Friday, December 30, 2011

My Favourite Webslinger Posts of 2011

As the old year is almost over, I have a tradition of recalling my favourite blog posts from the preceding year.

Here are my favourite posts from the past year. The provide a snapshot of my evolving interests in online topics and my personal past-times.

Chicago Is My Kind of Town
To celebrate a milestone birthday of mine, my wife took me on a trip to Chicago. I was greatly impressed by the city's cool use of digital media.

Pondering Effects of Foursquare
After eagerly adopting (and blogging about) the geosocial location-based mobile service, Foursquare I cooled off to its use. I've resumed using it in late 2011 as it is has become the prime LBS and perhaps only one to hit critical mass. This post recounts how I uses it and my hopes for it to offer richer experiences.

IPTV - TV over the Internet with Bell Fibe
After years of using rabbit ears, I got my family cable TV for Christmas last year. I got Bell's new Fibe service, which is delivered over the Internet. The blog post details some of its pros and cons. But recently Bell Fibe launched some great new apps, including Facebook and Twitter - so I'm liking it even more now.

Types of Geotargetted Information
My doctoral research this year has been laying down ground work on on central concepts for location-based services. This posts looks into the nature of various forms of geotargetted information.

Elegy for Yahoo
When I first started using the Internet - first email, calendars and web searching, then photo sharing, blogging, and folksonomies it was all via Yahoo. But when Yahoo "updated" their services and didn't support syncing with my BlackBerry I sadly had to quit using them.  I believe my experience is indicative of Yahoo's overall fate.

TEDx LibrariansTO - An Idea Worth Spreading
I'm not a fan of the elitism of TED conferences, but I think their format for presentations is highly effective. This posts recaps what I found particularly effective about the TED format, as I experienced at a TEDx event.

A good month so I have two favourites:

McLuhan Centenary
2011 was the hundredth anniversary of Toronto's media visionary Marshall McLuhan. His program is now housed at the Faculty of Information (iSchool) at the University of Toronto (where I'm studying).  There were lots of events to mark his centennary and this posts highlights some of McLuhan's bon mots on media.

Good Things Grow in Ontario
Foodland Ontario ran one of the most fun and effective social media campaigns that I've heard of (and I don't just say that as my kid entered).

August and September
- No posts; on vacation to Alaska and Whistler and then back to iSchool.

Locative Media Innovation Day
Location based services and locative media are the subject of my doctoral research, so I was really excited to attend a local conference on the subject on Toronto's new premier conference venue, TIFF.

Blogging is History
iSchool often has great speakers. This blog post captured a public lecture on archiving considerations for bloggers. I was surprised by how many important considerations I - and I'm sure many other bloggers - was missing.

The Top 15 Canadians in Digital Media
I particularly like this post on an article I wrote for Backbone Magazine for a few reasons. For one, I I think it is important to honour Canadians making significant contributions to the digital media sphere, and I think this article highlights 15 incredible Canadians. But also, this article began as a blog post I wrote for Canada Day in 2008. It's great to see something that started here evolve into something more prominent.

2011 also saw the loss of my mentor and digital pioneer, Liz Metcalfe. Canada's online scene is not the same without her and we greatly miss her.

I blogged more in 2011 than I have in years. But I missed a post for September 29th of 2011 which was the five year anniversary of Webslinger. What began as an experiment in blogging - and despite occasional neglect and even considerations of abandonment - has become a vital part of my academic and personal life.

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