Tag Archives: Information

Where do You get Your Information?

When you need to learn about something, where do you turn? Dan sent me the following email:

Many people use the Web for learning new things and broadening their experience, but I’ve gotta be honest… I’m a total junkie for learning more about anything interesting (even if I’ve never heard of it before). Chris’s operation has helped me get my tech fix most of the time, but I continuously explore new sources for learning. I thought I might share some of what I’ve learned.

Here is Dan’s Top Five List of Free General Information Resources

  • Media Websites A lot of radio and TV stations are starting to put their content online. I don’t always have time to listen to NPR when its broadcast live, but the local talk radio station here has links to all the podcast versions of their programs. Of course, some people have become averse to old media, but for many they’re still a good source of current events and information.
  • Video and Podcast Websites Holding up the cutting edge of media creation, websites like Chris’s are VERY useful for specific interests (Chris is one of the best examples). There are individually run sites (like GeekBriefTV or Robert Krampf) which provide a stream of useful and specific information. There are also group sites (like Revision3 or KoldCast) that offer a collection of sources in one place.
  • YouTube and Google Video Everyone uses YouTube and Google, and there’s a surprising amount of useful and educational information available. Google video tends to have longer videos like full documentaries BUT the ‘@Google’ presentations are also fantastic sources of information. Check that YouTube channel out if you’re interested in learning more.
  • iTunes U Released recently, the iTunes store now has a section of entirely free courses and lectures from a variety of sources. I haven’t explored this source very much yet, but it has a great deal of potential.
  • The Ted Talks This source really is in a league of its own. The TED conference is an incredible compilation of knowledge from an unprecedented number of areas and experts. The talks range from shockingly informative to down-right awe-inspiring. There are lots of areas to choose from and they’re great to send to friends that you know would be interested.

How do You Deal with Information Overload?

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The problem today isn’t that there’s not enough information. There’s too much. It’s not there aren’t ways to publish content on the Internet – there are an abundance. A lot of noise comes with that signal. So we’ve got different problems than we used to have. Information used to be handed to us from “on high”, as recently as a decade ago. Nowadays, information is just literally everywhere. It’s overwhelming at times. It’s impossible for me to keep up with the news aggregator, the email, the social networks…

Where does it end? How do you keep up with this information overload? It’s gotten to the point where I’ve had to start actually closing my system down. I love information. I’m an information junkie! I love teaching, learning, consuming, producing… I love it all. Imagine billions of people like me, though. How do we deal with all of it? I received an email recently about this very subject:

As it relates to hardware, Moore’s law does a good job of explaining the limitation of transistors in relation to the exponential growth of such systems. Is there an equivalent to Moore’s law for searching and assembling all of the information that is found online? What are we to do when the content becomes so overwhelming that we may have to design better tools just for managing and viewing information?

Are we relying too much on the machine to figure out what’s good and what’s bad? I think we are, and that’s where information overload is getting to be overwhelming. A few years ago, I was able to deal with it much easier. I think that’s because the tools just weren’t as good at putting the information together for us. It gets bigger and bigger.. and worse and worse… every day.

I believe the future of information overload is to go back to classic mode: humans and machines. The Internet is the connection between us. If I have a question about something, I’ll turn to someone I know, and who will have the correct information. What’s the answer to all of this information overload then?

I’m interested in hearing your opinions on this. Leave me a follow-up comment here, or send me an email to chris@pirillo.com

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Windows Vista Stories


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http://live.pirillo.com/ – A few friends joined me live to discuss their opinions and thoughts about Windows Vista. We discuss issues, as well as what we each feel should be done to improve.

Four of my friends joined me for this discussion: Kat, SC_Thor, Wirelesspacket, and last but certainly not least… Datalore.

Everyone agrees that Vista was simply not ready for release when Microsoft let loose Vista on the general public. Unfortunately, we all also agree that it would take drastic overhauls to make Vista better.

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Adobe Flash Privacy Settings

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http://live.pirillo.com/ – If you’re watching this video, then you’re probably using Flash player. David wrote in wondering how to adjust the privacy settings, and whether his personal history is viewable by Adobe.

Adobe’s Flash Player is a widely used program that allows you to watch videos on any number of websites. It can also be used to play online games, as well.

You can easily check your Flash privacy settings by going to this video, or any online video, and right clicking on it. This will open up a small settings box, and from there you should click the “Advanced” tab. This will take you to Adobe’s site, where you can adjust your privacy settings, and view your history. On that page, it will straight out tell you that all information is stored locally… on YOUR machine… and not on their actual site. They do not access it for any reason, nor do they use it in any way, shape or form.

Instead of asking “who here uses Flash?”, the question of the day is… who doesn’t?

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Halo 3 Slayer


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http://live.pirillo.com/ – You’ve seen me review the new Halo 3, and play the Oddballs custom game. This time, GamerAndy and I are going to try Slayer.

I received an advance copy of Halo 3 hanks to my friends at Edelman PR. I’ve already done a review on the game, and played Oddball .

I asked Andy if he’s tried Forge yet… he indicated he hadn’t, but thought it would be boring. Dude! Hardly! How cool is it when you blow things up, record it, play it back and freeze frame it… then take screenshots!?

Again in Slayer… just like with everything else on Halo 3 thus far… the graphics are just WOW. I keep using the word “astounding” over and over, but it truly is.

At least with Slayer, I died in vibrant color and detail! Who says I can’t be a true gamer? For those of you asking if you should get a PS3 or an XBOX360… just watch these videos, and decide for yourself.

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Halo 3 Oddball


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http://live.pirillo.com/ – Watch as I play the custom game “Oddball” on my pre-release copy of Halo 3. I’m playing with my friend GamerAndy, and I got one point!

I received an advance copy of Halo 3 hanks to my friends at Edelman PR. I’ve already done a review on the game. Now I’m going to try out a couple of the custom games.

The active Camo is amazing. I continue to be astounded by the sheer beauty of the graphics in this game. Absolutely… amazing.

Oh yeah… and I didn’t lose!

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Halo 3 Sneak Peek


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http://live.pirillo.com/ – I was lucky to receive an advance copy of the new Halo 3 that is due out in a few days. I played it last night with some friends to test it out, and decided to do a short review today. In a nutshell, if you’re waiting for Halo 3, you won’t be disappointed.

Thanks to my friends at Edelman PR, I was able to get my hands on a perfectly legal advance copy of Halo 3. I know many people are anxious for the release, and will be standing in line for this game.

First, let me warn you that your disc may have a slight scratch on it like mine does. The little plastic thingie in the case doesn’t hold the disc in there very well. However, I am able to play the game with no problems at all.

Now… on to the good stuff! The graphics in this game are absolutely astounding!!! The detailing is amazing, and the “trash talk” on both sides is excellent. I have a feeling this will be the most popular Halo version yet.

I know, some of you want my gamertag. It’s Lockergnome. However… don’t waste your time. I’m more of a Tetris kind of guy. I enjoy playing this, I’m having a great time with the demo… but you can see me getting my rear kicked while I’m at it.

UPDATE ON SCRATCHED HALO 3 DISCS If you purchased a copy of Halo 3 and your disc is scratched, Microsoft will send you a free replacement .

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Ronni Bennett Live from Gnomedex


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http://live.pirillo.com/ – There are 35 million people in the US who are 65 and older. People don’t know or don’t pay attention to what elders need to use computers and the Internet. Ronni has set out to change that… and change it she has.

In 1995 Ronni was hired as the first editor of the CBS News Internet portal. She needed to talk to a writer one day and realized that she was the oldest person in the room, by decades. She was 55 at the time. At that point, she started researching what aging was all about – everything she found was about decline, debility, disease, and death.

A few years later she had a massive amount of material, and decided to start a blog about aging just to get the information she had collected organized. People started reading… a LOT of people.

During today’s session, Ronni asked for two volunteers. They had to put on gardening gloves and special glasses, and then get online. The point was to show the challenges facing older people who want to surf the Internet.

The issues that they had were difficulty typing, and vision was blurry. Dark colors on a black background was even more difficult than white text on black background.

Seniors are the fastest growing age segment online. Currently there are no more than 9,000 geriotricians in the US. Because there are so few of them, the challenge is figuring out how to take care of elders. If we can get enough elders online, we could monitor all their vitals over the Internet, which means much less trips to the doctor.

Many people 65 and older have never used a computer at work, and therefore end up teaching themselves how to use their computers. In Ronni’s own words:

“At first, Time Goes By was just a place to put my research and thoughts on aging. I had no further ambitions for it and no illusions that with such a loser topic, many people would want to read it. Four years after its inception, Time Goes By has become a complex mix of reporting on every aspect of aging: health and medical issues, ageism and age discrimination, media, technology, politics and public policy, cultural attitudes, marketing to elders, the important of language, love and sex, friendship, post-career careers, retirement, retirement living, family, the prospect of death and, certainly, humor.”

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