Category Archives: Design

WordCamp Sydney 2012

Joe presenting in a lecture theatre at WordCamp Sydney 2012

©Neil Guanlao

Last week I had the pleasure of attending WordCamp Sydney 2012 and presented for the first time in a while. It was on a subject near to my heart, inclusive design. The biggest thrill for me was being able to present early and against someone I though would claim the entire crowd, Kimanzi T Constable who was following the keynote in the larger lecture hall. I still had a decent and enthusiastic crowd who posed some good questions. It was great to get  the preso over at the start of the conference so I could relax and enjoy the rest of the conference, which I did, thoroughly.

The entire event is archived at Eventifier, which is well worth investigating in itself, as it collects public traces of your event through the content shared on twitter via hashtags, and there are better writers than I who chose to write about the presentations they saw there.

Kiva published this video a few days ago showing how their funds travel through the world.
from only 620000 Lenders, over 200 million dolars have funded 615000 entrepreneurs in developing nations.

Intercontinental Ballistic Microfinance from Kiva Microfunds on Vimeo.

Think about giving a brother or sister out there a helping hand, and contributing to the Technicolour flow.

Some things of great beauty take time

Thanks to @stachio for the link to this post by: neilio

Some quick things often take time to appreciate.

NIDA Teaching Session

Updated: 05/9/09

Cultural Antropology

An antropological introduction to YouTube

mwesch you tube channel

Copyright and Neworking

Creative Commons Australia

Free technologies

WordPress resources:

Slideshow plugins

shadowbox JS

Free wordpress themes

Some Photo-blogging themes

Standards compliance

Domain registrars

Hosting companies

Coders, Templates, HTML from PSD

Money where your site is

The web began as a communication and collaboration tool but soon evolved into much more when someone sorted out how to pay for stuff through it. A secure protocol and security certificates helped make it happen but ultimately it was coders and credit card companies who put payment processes online.

Today the most well known payment process is undeniably PayPal, helped in no small part by the boom of eBay a few years back. I generally had no problem with paypal so long as I kept feeding it money to use for me and people happily paid for my eBay stuff through it. However, problems started when I migrated to Australia from the UK and both eBay and Paypal failed to move with me. Perhaps because Americans think no-one leaves the USA by choice, to move countries permanently, and their view is a world view, that this was not something worth catering for. I have to say it was easier to open a new bank account in my adopted country than to get paypal or eBay to acknowledge my move. I was told that i could change my address, of course, just not to another country.  Neither would accept that I should be able to keep my account open but update it with new address and payment information for another country.

The only answer was to open up a new account in my new country (with a new email address I might add since email is a unique identifier, of course). So goodbye eBay history and PayPay previous payments, and hello newborn newbie accounts. I suffered through the awkward separation and divorce and settled into newly-wedded bliss. Problem was though, my old relationships kept popping out through the cracks like a horror film zombie, to haunt my new babe with my past discretions.

This manifested itself in occasional top level domain redirection ( from the .com or I originally typed) or the refusal to buy an item restricted to aus addresses, even though my address and ip address clearly show Aussie-ness.

It would have been OK if the excuse I received made any sense, that it is to avoid international money laundering. That would suggest the system is incapable of managing a decent log of transactions or monitor accounts opening and closing rapidly. But confusingly for me, I don’t understand why it is incapable of understanding a person’s history online is important to them and in many ways, their own property.

Hopefully it’s not an excuse to increase the account count.

So even though it may be off topic, these are the kinds of questions I will be asking at the PayPal Developer Day in Sydney on Monday.

Basically, what is changing in the pay pal interface to make it easier and better for humans to get their tasks done?

It’s the little things

I remember a Charles Bukowski poem, The Shoelace (AUDIO or TEXT), I may have mentioned it here before, but it’s the little things that drive people crazy, make them mad beyond the scope of the little thing. There’s no reason your broken shoelace drives you crazy but it does. Listen to people talk on the morning bus or evening after work drink. Before the personal stuff there is usually a story of how some meaningless inconsequential event, a late train, a missed call, a broken accessory, a lost earring, made their day that much more unpleasant.

I remembered this when I got my morning coffee today, lazy; didn’t make my own.

The coffee shop give out loyalty cards, you know the ones, buy ten, get one free; that sort of thing. Great! I said! Thanks!

But it won’t fit in the space wallets have for credit cards.

I stood there while the steam gushed through the ground coffee, smelling my morning Javanese fix getting closer and I was forced to think up new places to put this card, away from other loyalty cards, bus ticket, etc. Find a new place to keep the thing that was meant to make me feel better. You made me have to think about you when I was busy thinking about me.

My morning started with a problem, when I am on my way trying to solve big problems for other people that is worth a lot of money for them. The coffee was supposed to make me feel good, but I had a problem even before I plopped at my desk.

OK, it was a small thing but your small things shouldn’t get in the way of my enjoying your company, because it’s the small things that drive us crazy.