RSS was the cutting bleeding edge in 2002, or at least it seemed to me. Few people knew what it was if you muttered it (well that has not changed), but very little of the things we are excited about now would have have their oomph without the underlying, humble glue, of RSS, ugly to the non techie eyes XML.

Today I did a brief, light speed, un-rehearsed overview of RSS for a small group- done via online service iVolcalize— this was at the request of Steve Gilbert, from the TLTGroup, and I have dodged Steve for almost 8 months. But he’s persistent, and in that time, he has managed to get himself into podcasting, a bit of RSS thinking, etc.


So today’s session was one of their “iVocalize Synchronous Sessions” on Feeds [RSS, et al.] & Aggregators Samples, Info, Tools, & Uses. I’ve not been i one of these, but they are pitched as more conversational online events, with smaller groups. I have not used iVocalize before, but it is very similar to Elluminate, in that it runs form a Java client. You have the push to talk audio exchange, a chat area, a white board, the whole 4 yards.

In a test, it seemed to work okay on my Mac OS X / Firefox, but launching into the session, the shared browsing is “not supported for your platform”. Gulp. So while Steve did intros, I restarted my MacBookPro into Windows XP. Oi, on the first attempt with the applet, it had to download something, a plugin, and it needed a reboot. More wait. Eventually (about 9 minutes into the session) I got there. And started blabbing.

I pretty much just blabbed too quickly about RSS– none of the participants had microphones, so it was hard to gauge the audience, though we got some questions via chat. It was, again, the firehose set loose.

As I said, little prep time, and spontaneous talking is my kind of presentation. I have no idea if it was fun for others 😉 For anyone who cares, and this is really nothing new under the RSS sun, I had cobbled some image only slides in (yes, the first time in years)… PowerPoint, since it imports into iVocalize available as a 2.9 Mb download. It’s not even worth it, especially since I used a fancy Font Very Few Others ikely Have (though it was a freebie), so I exported the slides as plain images, and quickly posted a list of a few links in a wikispace.

the coolest thing was playing around last night with Comic Life, the fun app that allows you to easily pluck images form iPhoto (or elsewhere) and create your own comics like I did above! It’s been out for web-eons, but this was the first time I launched it. It was a freebie with the new MacBookPro, and I spent about 4 minutes creating a silly graphic.

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An early 90s builder of the web and blogging Alan Levine barks at on web storytelling (#ds106 #4life), photography, bending WordPress, and serendipity in the infinite internet river. He thinks it's weird to write about himself in the third person.