Josh represented Microsoft during OpenCamp recently. People were quite confused as to why Microsoft would be interested in Open Source products. While Windows and Linux may be competitors, much of the Open Source applications are not. They run really well in Windows.
The IIS team is making sure that open source software runs better on Windows than it does on Linux. Microsoft is very supportive of the people making these applications, and attends a lot of conferences to help them in every way they can.
To anyone who feels that Microsoft hates Open Source, Josh asks them to take a new look at the Redmond team. They compete hard where they have a product that may be similar, such as the operating system and Microsoft Office. However, when it comes to everything else – keep your eyes open and let Microsoft work with you to make the best application you can produce.
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I was asked to discuss ways to become a successful blogger for my recent OpenCa.mp presentation. When deciding how best to approach this subject, I knew I had to dig all the way back to my beginnings. I needed to reconnect with where I started from… specifically the feelings of inspiration I had from the moment I sent my first email. Having done this Internet thing for so many years now, I’ve learned a trick or three. Most people will tell you that having good content is the key to becoming a successful blogger. I’m here to tell you that that is only 1/3 of the equation.
Community. Content. Commerce.
You don’t have to be perfect to start doing something. The tools are out there to help you get going. Don’t worry about fancy setups or expensive equipment. It’s not about that. If that’s what’s holding you back then you’re holding yourself back. It’s NOT the technology’s fault.
I’ve long explained that community is inside of each of you. Your interests are wherever you go. Your blog could be an extension of that. Community, though, is not separate from commerce and content. They all flow together. If you lose focus on any of the three, there’s a larger chance you will fail.
There are definitely times you should listen to your community, but you are ultimately in control of your direction. The people who follow you will tell you when something isn’t working right, trust me on this. They will be quite loud about it. If you listen carefully, though, they’ll also tell you when you’re doing things right. They will tell you simply by retweeting your links, by commenting on your posts and by just communicating with each other.
You WILL have detractors. Screw them, though. Think of it this way – for every person who hates what you’re doing, there will be hundreds or thousands of others who love things just the way they are. Don’t let that naysayer stop you from being YOU. Don’t live your life (not even on your blog or social media outlets) for someone else.
One of the key things to remember when you are creating content that it doesn’t really matter what you’re saying, or what your intentions are. It’s all about how people react to what you’ve done, and how they project themselves onto you. You need to keep that in your head at all times. If someone becomes upset over something you have shared with them, that’s on them. Your content is only genuine if YOU are genuine.
Your blog is your nexus point. Every piece of content you create should flow directly back there. I consider Leo Laporte to be a good friend. I admire the work he does, and think that he’s extremely smart. However, I had to shake my head in amazement recently. He wrote a blog post talking about how Google Buzz had let him down. Content he had created was just – gone. It was no longer anywhere to be found. He commented that he should go “back to the blog.” My counter to that is simple “Why did you ever stop?” Your blog is yours. You own that. You own the content you create. No matter how many other sites you belong to and create content for, it has to come together into one central place. That nexus should be your blog.
You are already a success. How you measure your success is up to you.
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While at Openca.mp last weekend, I couldn’t help but ham it up for Ian Aberle’s camera. Your task is to caption these pictures, either here in the blog comments or directly on Flickr. Let’s see how much more hilarious you can make these shots by adding your words.
I personally think that one of these should become my new profile picture… but which one?
My name is Chris and I am afraid of heights. I’m not talking about the type of fear where you sweat a little bit. I’m talking the kind where you warn an entire state that they may see yellow “rain” in the very near future. This is the stuff that movies are made of, and doctors get paid big bucks to cure. However, I’m also the type of person who cannot walk away from a dare and is willing to try almost anything once.
Thanks to my stupidity willingness to meet a new challenge head-on, I jumped out of an airplane today. Lucky for me, @gkmikett has done this a couple of times in the past and did not let me die. I have a feeling that I held on a little too tight at times. My hands didn’t want to unclench themselves even after we were safely on the ground.
I have to admit, though… it was pretty damn awesome. There is no other way to describe it. Even being afraid of heights… it was the single most exhilarating experience of my life. Would I do it again? Let’s not push your luck.
I have to thank Cali Lewis and the OpenCamp team for convincing me to give this a try. The US Army Golden Knights were hilarious dudes to work with. If you’re going to risk your life, there’s no one better to do so with than any of these guys: @gkmikett @gkjoe and @gjdave – follow them now!
Even hours after we landed, I was still flying high during dinner at the May Dragon Chinese Restaurant.