(Belated) NotCon Roundup


I should probably get around to mentioning NotCon, if only to remind me that I was actually there (just in case the ubiquitous digital photography isn’t enough. Great, a permanent record of my pastry-eating mannerisms!). Also nice to see that Tom Gilbert, who I know indirectly but have never met, was standing right behind me. Like Lost Highway.

As for the talks, Brewster Kahle skips effortlessly between his inspirational vision of a public archive of all recorded human knowledge and the financial practicalities of filling a rack with commodity hardware. I don’t think I’d registered quite how much stuff the Internet Archive was hosting these days. Fugazi shows! (Repeater deserves your attention.) Speed runs!

Danny O’Brien’s Life Hacks is apparently making its steady journey towards actuality. In summary: automate things, use scripts, use RSS, use SSH, every day, in every way. There’s some excellent anthropology here, so it’s going to be interesting to see what the result is.

Richard Jones gave a good précis of Audioscrobbler. Yes, lots of people like Radiohead, but he can prove with data, and facts, and statistics, that this is probably because they manage to bridge the ‘indie’ and ‘rock/metal’ genre clusters. In my experience, people listen mainly to Hoobastank and Usher. It’s hard to know what kind of skew the self-selecting nature of the userbase causes – I’m certainly hesitant to sign up for something that would publish the music I really listen to.

Congratulations all round to everyone involved. Now, without sounding ungrateful: what’s next?

(Music: Fugazi, “Blueprint”)
(More from this year, or the front page? [K])