Chris Thile mini-review

Chris Thile mini-review: I could have written a review in advance of last night’s concert by Chris Thile’s and his “new” band at the Belcourt theatre in Nashville. All the superlatives I anticipated that I’d use are, sure enough, the ones I would use. However, I would not have known that Thile’s band called “How to Grow a Band” would not have the guitarist featured on his soon-to-be-released CD and on his MySpace site, but, rather Bryan Sutton would be playing guitar. (Now that I look back at it, I should have noticed that was Bryan playing on the YouTube video of them practicing.) Four years ago, I mentioned on this blog a rather remarkable time I was able to hear Chris and Bryan play together. If you ever get the chance (like tonight in Boulder, Colo.) to hear them, do it. When Chris Thile’s new CD comes out on September 12, I will review it and the concert in more detail. I’m thinking it should be a podcast.

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Second Life virtual state delegates up for grab

Second Life virtual state delegates up for grab: Forget Iowa. Now potential presidential candidates are heading to Second Life to campaign. I think campaigning on Second Life is right up there with doing an interview with Steven Colbert. High risk, questionable reward and lots of accolades from people who rarely vote. Don’t get me wrong. I think appearing on Second Life is very appropriate for politicians. Many I observe live permanently in make-believe worlds.

Update: rexblog’s peephole into the world of Second Life, Eric Rice, has posted a screen shot from the “event.”

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Pushed Flash 2.0, or what the heck is MySI?

Pushed Flash 2.0, or what the heck is MySI? Is SI.com‘s new screensaver thing any good? I wouldn’t know. It doesn’t work on a Mac.

From their FAQ:

Q. What operating system do I need to run mySI?
A. mySI will run on Windows 2000 and Windows XP systems.

Of course, Mac users are not known for being influential (as this photo from a recent conference of “citizen journalists” held at Harvard University displays) so I can completely understand why the brilliant marketers at SI.com would launch a Windows-only version. (Note for any humorless Cult of Mac member that may drive by this post: That was irony.)

Since I can’t try it out, I’ll trust my friend Staci Kramer at Paidcontent.org, who says, “it makes eye-catching use of one of Sports Illustrated’s greatest assets: its photography.”

Again, I can’t try this out, but this sure sounds like some type of “son of Pointcast” product to me. (Push Technology 2.0?) If you don’t recall Pointcast, the concept was similar: a screensaver with syndicated content that was periodically updated. Advertisers loved it because it was like TV (they thought) and the idea of having their logos flying around people’s computer screens was extremely compelling to them. The problem with Pointcast (Push Technology 1.0) however, was that limited bandwidth and processing power ten years ago meant that your computer would suddenly slow down to a crawl whenever Pointcast started downloading something in the background. After a few times of that happening, you’d set it to update manually and then soon, you’d forget that you had it. Oh, yeah. And the other thing: People don’t want advertisements flying around their computer desktops. Really, they don’t. I can’t believe it, but I think it’s a scientific fact.

MySI is an advertising-supported screensaver from a company called MercurySports Network that has some cool-looking son-of-Pointcast things it calls Screenservers (that’s Screenservers® for you registered trademark buffs). According to the MecurySports site, there will be a Mac OS X version soon. When that happens, I’ll download this specific Screenserver® from the Tennessee® Titans® and try it out. Who knows? Now that broadband is universally available, maybe pushed flash can work. But if it has ads flying around my desktop, I’m thinking probably not.

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