Friday, April 21, 2006

Google, Miro, Slingbox, Red Sox - Many Questions

It's one of those days where I don't have much to say, and am quite busy fulfilling projects for my clients. So for today, I've just got some loose ends to share - but these stories raise some really interesting questions. In this Web 2.0 world, the ground at our feet is like sand - always shifting, and everyone leaves a different imprint.

First up, fellow Canadian/Bruins fan/gadget guy, Jim Courtney.

Jim has recently become a contributing editor for Skype Journal, so he's got a great high profile soapbox now. Loved his post yesterday about getting interviewed by CBC about Slingbox.

It's a great sign of the times when our #1 national TV broadcaster does a story about Slingbox, which was just launched in Canada at the end of March. For those who can watch CBC, the segment is supposed to air next Monday or Tuesday at 6:30 according to Jim. Hopefully this piece will help spread the word about Slingbox and what place shifting is all about. As Jim says, it would be even neater if they made the segment available on their website, which is really another form of place shifting. Great going Jim - will try to watch it.

Next item - Miro and Google. You've all seen it, right?


Have to admit, it's well done, and the intentions seemed right - to honor Joan Miro's birthday. Given how Google is everywhere these days, you just know something had to come from this. I don't think this had much to do with their great earnings numbers, but there doesn't seem to be much right now they can't do.

Anyhow, I'm too busy to get into the details now, and I'll steer you instead to today's post by Alec Saunders. It's a great read and touches on the kinds of questions that come to mind for me.

It has raised all kinds of issues around copyright, artistic license, and plagarism, and makes you really wonder what rules will ultimately prevail in the digital world. I don't think Google expected the response it got, especially from ARS - the Artists Rights Society. And as Alec points out, the Miro family is probably missing out on a wonderful opportunity for Google to actually bring Joan Miro's art to a broader audience. Talk about a different kind of mashup! Just another hat for Google to wear - goodwill ambassador for the arts. Maybe this is the start of a trend where we'll start seeing stylized logos from Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc. for other artists. The possibilities are endless and could create a whole new pot of gold for licensing logos to get treatments by other artists. No doubt Andy Warhol would just be loving this...

Finally, the Red Sox.

Am a bit anxious after last night's finale of their homestand. Should have swept TBay and gone 7-3, but we may be seeing an early Achilles Heel here - their inability to hit southpaws. Kazmir had them stoned, and Wakefield wasted another great outing. Go figure - he only gives up 1 hit through 6 innings - and is down 2-1. Huh???? Another passed ball cost us a run, and then the wheels came off in the 8th. Can we do something, please, to get Mirabelli back? At least Foulke pitched well, and the tying run did come up with only 1 out in the 9th. But it was not to be.

Well, I get to see the Sox for real tonight - no Slingbox for me this time, Jim! They're here to play the Jays, and I'm going with my 13 year old, Max - hope to post some pix and clips over the weekend. Jays took 2 of 3 at Fenway, so we'll be looking to get even. The big hope is that Manny hits very well at Rogers Center - nee SkyDome - and he's so due it isn't funny. And talk about a fab pitching matchup tonight - Beckett vs. Burnett - the 2 biggest off season pitcher signings. Should be a great game. Only a true fan can get this into a ball game so early in the season - can't help it....

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