Trend for 2008: Geeks doing Good?

I really hope this is a trend in 2008. Jeremy Toeman is one of those guys who inspires me to do better. Yesterday’s volunteering at the San Francisco Foodbank was a lot of fun. Not just because we helped out our local community, either. But because people from Yahoo, Google, Wired Magazine, Mahalo, AOL, AdBrite, and quite a few other tech companies came and pitched in. This was a KILLER way to network. Certainly better than going to one of those parties where you just consume alcohol and trade cards. We got a demo of the OLPC from a geek who already is hacking it and we learned a lot about the needs in the local San Francisco community from a great tour (Part I, and Part II) — this is why you should empower your employees to talk on your behalf. Imagine if George, the warehouse supervisor, had to check with PR like most employees at big companies do. Remember, this was a weekend and that was above and beyond — it’s the kind of testimony that reminds us that some people don’t just have jobs, they have callings.

The audio with Qik is too scratchy to use for serious stuff like this, though. I gotta find another way to stream video with my cell phone.

Comments

  1. Thanks to you and all the other Geeks. I’m proud of you.

    Better than Qik?
    I keep coming back to Roi’s review of FlixWagon on Techcrunch:
    “I had a chance to see FlixWagon in action on a few occasions and was impressed by video that came out on the Web clearer than I expected. I also saw videos uploaded using the same mobile handset to both Qik and FlixWagon. Subjectively speaking, I felt that FlixWagon was superior.”
    http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/12/18/flixwagon-jumps-on-the-live-mobile-video-bandwagon/

  2. Thanks to you and all the other Geeks. I’m proud of you.

    Better than Qik?
    I keep coming back to Roi’s review of FlixWagon on Techcrunch:
    “I had a chance to see FlixWagon in action on a few occasions and was impressed by video that came out on the Web clearer than I expected. I also saw videos uploaded using the same mobile handset to both Qik and FlixWagon. Subjectively speaking, I felt that FlixWagon was superior.”
    http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/12/18/flixwagon-jumps-on-the-live-mobile-video-bandwagon/

  3. Thanks for the feedback! It really helps us to make the right decisions in finding the best balance between “live” and “high quality” as the closed alpha continues. Some background info…

    The Qik app currently makes a lot of quality decisions based upon a few varying factors:
    - “live” or “buffered” chosen in the settings
    - cell network bandwidth and signal strength at the current location
    - some hidden settings that we’re working on getting exposed in the main UI, where appropriate, or building into the app as defaults

    Since the needs vary so greatly between live and recorded video, choosing “live” will cause the client to evaluate outgoing quality in order to allow realtime interaction. There are some ways to greatly improve audio and/or video quality even under poor network conditions, if required. Choosing “buffered” is the quickest fix — it may cause some buffering delays in the live stream, but the quality will be significantly higher.

    For going beyond that (obtaining settings for production quality streams, for example) give us a yell at support@qik.com and we’ll see what we can do :). And stay tuned for some upcoming features that will raise the performance bar even higher.

  4. Thanks for the feedback! It really helps us to make the right decisions in finding the best balance between “live” and “high quality” as the closed alpha continues. Some background info…

    The Qik app currently makes a lot of quality decisions based upon a few varying factors:
    - “live” or “buffered” chosen in the settings
    - cell network bandwidth and signal strength at the current location
    - some hidden settings that we’re working on getting exposed in the main UI, where appropriate, or building into the app as defaults

    Since the needs vary so greatly between live and recorded video, choosing “live” will cause the client to evaluate outgoing quality in order to allow realtime interaction. There are some ways to greatly improve audio and/or video quality even under poor network conditions, if required. Choosing “buffered” is the quickest fix — it may cause some buffering delays in the live stream, but the quality will be significantly higher.

    For going beyond that (obtaining settings for production quality streams, for example) give us a yell at support@qik.com and we’ll see what we can do :). And stay tuned for some upcoming features that will raise the performance bar even higher.

  5. I know you mean well and write without thinking, but seeing things in terms of “killer networking” when helping out the down and out, is well, pretty crass. Not everything is one big social networking experience.

  6. I know you mean well and write without thinking, but seeing things in terms of “killer networking” when helping out the down and out, is well, pretty crass. Not everything is one big social networking experience.

  7. Christopher: it might be crass, but who the hell cares WHAT the motivation is if the work gets done? The Food Bank didn’t care why we were there, they just needed 44,000 lbs of food sorted.

    So, if we get more geeks to join us at the foodbank instead of the next Web 2.0 party isn’t that a good thing? Or, I guess, in your world you’d rather have them go and drink the alcohol while networking.

    Geesshhh.

    Personally I found that doing this kind of work while talking to geeks made the work a LOT more fun. Sorry that you don’t look for ways to make doing good fun. I’ve never seen YOU write about helping out, or finding ways to make helping out more fun.

  8. Christopher: it might be crass, but who the hell cares WHAT the motivation is if the work gets done? The Food Bank didn’t care why we were there, they just needed 44,000 lbs of food sorted.

    So, if we get more geeks to join us at the foodbank instead of the next Web 2.0 party isn’t that a good thing? Or, I guess, in your world you’d rather have them go and drink the alcohol while networking.

    Geesshhh.

    Personally I found that doing this kind of work while talking to geeks made the work a LOT more fun. Sorry that you don’t look for ways to make doing good fun. I’ve never seen YOU write about helping out, or finding ways to make helping out more fun.

  9. Robert – I agree with you that it was a heck of a lot of fun to have all the geeks around (except for my mom who was assigned to the boxmaking station with a dozen high school kids). I think the comments that Christopher and Steven are making is that your phrasing in this post makes it sound like the *major* reason to do it is for the networking.

    Personally I share your mindset in that ANY way we get more people to volunteer makes the world a better place. In my opinion deeds win over motives every time. I just don’t think I’d use the phrase “killer networking” again in the same situation. ;)

    Thanks again for coming, and to the distractors: you have fair points. Can’t wait to see you SHOW UP at the next event.

  10. Robert – I agree with you that it was a heck of a lot of fun to have all the geeks around (except for my mom who was assigned to the boxmaking station with a dozen high school kids). I think the comments that Christopher and Steven are making is that your phrasing in this post makes it sound like the *major* reason to do it is for the networking.

    Personally I share your mindset in that ANY way we get more people to volunteer makes the world a better place. In my opinion deeds win over motives every time. I just don’t think I’d use the phrase “killer networking” again in the same situation. ;)

    Thanks again for coming, and to the distractors: you have fair points. Can’t wait to see you SHOW UP at the next event.

  11. Great post! I just got my OLPC laptop, and it looks like a truly great learning tool that could really change the prospects for the children that receive them.

  12. Great post! I just got my OLPC laptop, and it looks like a truly great learning tool that could really change the prospects for the children that receive them.