Archive: About This Blog
Posted at 5:00 AM ET, 10/19/2006
I.T. Begins Now
Used to be, technology and culture wouldn't be seen with each other.
Consider a big broadcast television network, like CBS. For years, it was a pretty low-tech, low-brow operation -- over-the-air signal to your TV. Ed Sullivan and game shows. Culture was opera; it looked down on the "idiot box." End of story.
But now, CBS is sending video sports highlights to your smart phone. It's putting clips from "CSI: Miami" on YouTube. It has created whole story arcs for its TV shows that can be seen only on the Internet. Oh, yeah: CBS still has television shows, which now come over-the-air in digital high-definition or via cable and satellite.
Today, pop culture is the culture; it cannot survive without technology.
And that's the beginning of our story.
Welcome to Post I.T., a blog by the technology and media staff of the Business section of The Washington Post.
I'm Frank Ahrens. I'll be writing daily.
You'll also be hearing from assistant technology editor Sam Diaz, as well as tech reporters Sara Kehaulani Goo, Mike Musgrove, Yuki Noguchi, Alan Sipress and who knows who else eventually. Each reporter has their own beats, and their own voice, and each will bring you dispatches and smart takes from the intersection of technology and culture.
Today, we're all techies, even if we consider ourselves Luddites. Even if you take pride in not having cable TV (which, by the way, I don't understand, especially if you're a journalist, but that's a conversation for another day), I bet you have a cell phone or a BlackBerry. Or both. Even if you can't figure out how to put toner in the office copier, you might be a whiz at programming your TiVo. Even if you have only a clock radio in your bedroom, I bet you noticed the satellite radio in your last rental car or bought your kid an iPod.
The point is, this century is all about the Great Interface.
This blog will not only examine how hardware interfaces with software, but more importantly, how the whole shebang interfaces with wetware -- our brains. We invent technology. In turn, it changes us, in ways both gross and subtle. Fewer things are more fascinating -- and befuddling and overwhelming and even scary - than the collision of humans and technology.
Which is why you need a User's Guide to the 21st Century.
Here, you will find news and analysis, guidance and refuge, provocation and challenge.
When you're talking about us to your friends, you can call us Post I.T.
But we like nicknames. Better yet, nicknames of nicknames. So you can call us the User's Guide. Or the YouGee, or just Ugi. Work with us. To make this thing fly, we'll need your input - your comments, your complaints, your observations. Tell us some stories about You v. Technology.
Want to stay smart? Amaze and astound your friends? Get better-looking and thinner?
Well, you're on your own on that last one. For the rest, check in here several times a day. You won't want to miss I.T.
-- Frank Ahrens
Posted at 1:00 PM ET, 10/18/2006
About This Blog
Who needs another blog? Not you.
What you need is a user's guide to the 21st century.
"Post I.T." will report from the crossroads of technology and culture, telling you what you need to know. Even -- and especially -- if you think of yourself as a Luddite, this is the place for you.
We'll make sense of the daily assault of gizmos and weird-sounding words, from TiVo to YouTube, from iPods to ID theft. And we'll have a lot of fun. So will you.
Posted at 12:00 AM ET, 10/16/2006
FAQ: Saving and Sharing Links
This blog links to services that offer different ways to save, share and recommend its contents -- tools to help you keep the conversation going online and connect with other readers who are interested in the same things you are.
Each of the services is free, but some form of user registration is required to use each of them.
Here's a brief description of each of the services, information on how to use them and links you can follow to register and find out more about the sites:
At its most basic level, del.icio.us allows users to save their bookmarks online.
Del.icio.us also gives users the ability to "tag" their bookmarks with descriptive category names. For example, someone who has bookmarked multiple Web pages that deal with the Washington Nationals baseball team could tag those links with any terms they want, like "baseball," "nationals," "natsfan," etc.
As members of a "social bookmarking" community, del.icio.us sers can also see how many other people have bookmarked the same pages, and they can look at those users' bookmark collections to find other interesting online content.
To register, go to: http://del.icio.us/register
For more information about Del.icio.us, go to http://del.icio.us/about/
On Digg, users share intersting online content by submitting links to the site. At that point, the Digg audience can vote on whether or not they think it is interesting. Articles with lots of votes, or "diggs," rise up higher on the site's main page and topical subsection pages.
Another form of social sharing, this site also lets users categorize the content they are submitting to Digg and label it with descriptions of up to 350 characters. Digg users can also submit comments on each content item submitted to the site.
To register, go to: http://digg.com/register
For more information about Digg, go to http://digg.com/about
Technorati is a blog search engine. You can click the links in this blog to see if other blogs are linking to particular posts. The site also lets users track blogs that deal with specific topics.
Get more information on Technorati: www.technorati.com
Posted at 12:22 PM ET, 06/12/2006
About This Blog
Over the course of a year, Washington Post and washingtonpost.com journalists travel to a number of conferences, conventions and expositions. At these events, the luminaries of the technology industry display, demonstrate and discuss their visions of the future, from upcoming products to far-reaching trends. Whenever we decide to cover those events with live blogging, this is where you'll find it.
Our inaugural event was the 2006 E3 video game expo in Los Angeles, at which six different bloggers posted more than 100 times over a five-day period. We'll alert readers to future rounds of coverage both in this blog and on our main Technology page.
Business and Technology Editor, washingtonpost.com