Have some blog payola

The Valleywag figured us out. We’re controlling bloggers just by flying them to Redmond. Your mind is under our control. (Insert evil laugh here). Oh, sorry, got a little out of control. Blame it on the payola I just got. Hanging out here with about 10 geeks. I’m well pickled. Sat in the hot tub for more than an hour. My fingers are all wrinkly.

Anyway, I’m under Laurent’s mind control. Oh, now Euan Semple, who works for the BBC is trying to control my mind (he’s sitting on the floor right in front of me and writes a blog titled “the obvious”). Resist! Resist! There is no way I’m gonna do the “four things” thing. No way. No how. Heh.

At least not until someone gives me some of that blog payola!! Heck, I even had to carry my own bag into this shindig. Heh. And while sitting in a hot tub in the moonlight with five other geeks is a spiritual experience you still gotta run across the snow back to the house. Damn that’s cold.

Hello from the wifi hot tub

We’re not quite in it yet, but will be in a few minutes. Here Pierre Devos is warming up the hot tub. That should be an experience. Five geeks all sitting in a tub. Sorry, we have a pact: no photos. 🙂

The skiing here is awesome. I’m so out of shape, though. Here’s a picture down the slope at Villars where Laurent Haug took me to.

I hear the founder of IKEA lives directly beneath these slopes. I can see why. Stunning natural beauty. That’s Geneva in the background under the blanket of fog.

Oh, and the chalet we’re staying in? It’s 400 years old and has a weblog built into the house. Seriously. There’s a timber that has writings on it going back hundreds of years in a reverse-chronilogical format. No RSS feed, though. 🙂

Thanks to Pierre (a friend of Laurent’s) for inviting us up to his Chalet. Sometimes I get to have remarkable experiences. Today is one of those days. Thanks to both Laurent and Pierre! The view off of his porch is stunning.

Going skiing today…

I’m going skiing today with the folks who planned the Lift conference (which was a lot of fun). Ellen Wallace said some nice things about my talk on her blog. I appreciate that. I probably won’t post much between now and Tuesday. I’ll be skiing today and tomorrow and not sure I’ll have access to the Internet (Laurent is kidnapping me and taking me to some chalet in the alps). On Monday I’ll be traveling back to Seattle most of the day.

Some real quick things. Toronto will get naked on March 6 (er, my coauthor is having a blogger dinner there).

One person I wanted to call out that I met this week is Steph Booth. She’s a seventh-grade teacher in Switzerland. Really cool person and opened my eyes to a lot of the European blogging community.  She also taught me a lesson. Don’t get drunk with a model and let people take pictures! Yes, I’m gonna make you look for the good photos. Let’s just say that Thursday night was a little too much fun! She taught us how to do “ghost photography” too. It’s a wild world I’m in. Goof around, get Flickr’ed, and now everyone knows I played jedi with Hugh Macleod.

Transparency, is it a good thing when you’re partying? Hmmm.

Dave worries about Microsoft

Dave Winer is worried that Microsoft is going to throw its weight around when it comes to RSS. I worry about that too. A lot.

I agree, too, that things have changed. For one, Microsoft is far more transparent than it used to be. If we do something evil you know who to call. I have the head of Internet Explorer team, Dean Hachamovitch on IM and have his cell phone number.

Also, I am here at the Lift conference. During the last session I stood in the back and watched how people were sharing information. Blogs. IM. Email. All live. People are so connected now. If we do something evil it spreads around the world within an hour. Or even faster.

Finally, it takes minutes for this connected world to figure out whether something is good or not. If it isn’t you’ll know and know in a violent manner.

What does this mean? First, if we don’t work with the community we’ll fail. Second, if we don’t have the best products and services, we’ll fail. Third, if we take too long to react to market demands we’ll be left out of the conversation and rendered irrelevant.

Hint: I am using Dave Winer’s aggregator. That said, I wish Dave’s aggregator told the RSS platform when I read a post so that other RSS reading apps on the system (I have several) will know that I read an item already.