Sharing Nicely

Month: February, 2006

lufthansa miles and more (from the "how-not-to-do-customer-support" department)

The Lufthansa miles and more website for frequent fliers let’s you send email to their support staff through an online interface…. What this tells me loud and clear is, “LH really does not want to hear from its frequent fliers who might have questions.”I also tried sending my reply message to info@, help@, postmaster@, webmaster@,, but all of them bounce …

carefully crafting a sarcastic or serious email? chances are the reader won't be able to tell which it is …

In a recent study of 30 undergraduate students, researchers from the University of Chicago and New York University said the tone of an email message was only correctly interpreted 50 per cent of the time…. The senders of the messages expected their partners to correctly interpret their tone nearly 80 per cent of the time, but in fact they only scored just over 50 per cent, said the report.

podfading …

But I agree that creating podcasts, even simple ones, takes considerable time and effort.FYI, I just recorded a brief interview with Luc Soete (Dutch site) about the merger of UNU-INTECH and MERIT, including some thoughts on the work we will do in the future, and implications for the PhD programme. It will go online later this month.WIRED article on “podfading” (,70171-0.html?tw=rss.index)Some snippets:Podcasting has drawn thousands on the premise that anyone can create an audio program, build an audience online and even vault to stardom.

D(ont)R(estrict)M(y rights)

Is this something to worry about or will the pressure of social norms (and the smarts of software developers worldwide) render these last efforts as useless as the chip that someone wanted to build into everyone’s TVs at one point …… And as Cory points out, you can use google search to find it.What this is really about is an incumbent industry’s desperate attempts to rescue an outdated business model.

throw off the bowlines, and start adopting open standards in public administration now

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do…. Catch the trade winds in your sails.

the lid is off the network – FON

This could have huge implication for telecommunications companies scrambling to keep the lid on open networks.Good description of how it works, by David Weinberger (who also sits on the board):The aim is to provide enough incentives, and make it easy enough technically, that thousands of people will start providing Fon hotspots…. You cannot roam the Fon network for free.If you’re an “Alien,” you register with Fon (for free) and then can use Fon hotspots wherever you find them for a rate far lower than you’re paying T-Mobile or Starbucks, etc. Fees have not been finalized, but it’s going to be way under the $6/hour typical in the US.More background on Martin Varsavsky’s (FON’s founder) blog.

why neoclassical airplanes don't fly – first UNU-MERIT podcast

It features three (long and academic) presentations by Giovanni Dosi, Luc Soete and Bart Verspagen.It was our first attempt at podcasting, and I don’t think the content is perfect, but we used it to set-up the basic infrastructure and will start doing more targeted (and editorial) recordings.Our basic set-up:- We record audio straight from the PA in our conference room onto my Apple laptop. The Apple PowerBook does have a mini line-in port, which allows me to use the line out from the amplifier.- I edit the files using Audacity (I use 1.3 beta), which is open source and comes free of license costs.