From My Head to the Web. Tools I Use: MindMeister

I’m one of those people who has far more going on in his head than I’m able to share. I plan to post videos. I’m formulating “New Marketing University.” And so much more. The name I’ve made up for my productivity efforts to move all of these ideas into online action is “From my head to the Web.”

The most effective tool that I’ve found so far that successfully facilitates this process is the mind-mapping web-based, Web 2.0 oriented, application MindMeister. I’ve started sketching out a variety of information flows from the new service level agreements for ComBridges to the ingredients and intended results for the New Marketing University enterprise to ideas and types of future blog posts.

A simple example is below. When I think about what I call The Grand Canyon Gap between people and technology, it’s clear to me that there are a variety of people at various stages of “crossing” the Gap as well as a variety of approaches to creating communication “bridges” across. Here is the current state of my thoughts on this as captured in MindMeister:

Of course, this is a simple example. There are many more complex examples, many enabled by MindMeister’s Web 2.0 style sharing functionalities, including valuable resources like MindMeister maps that attempt to provide a comprehensive view of the best online collaboration tools of all types and recent attendees of the TEDxAmsterdam conference used MindMeister to mind map the thought-leaders presenters.

I hope this is useful to you. Do you use MindMeister or another mind-mapping tool? What helps you get your ideas from your head to the web?

My Virtual CES Report

No, I didn’t go to CES (the consumer electronics mega-convention) in Las Vegas, but here are a few tidbits from the web that I’ve found worthy:

Scoble‘s doing Qik videos direct from his cell phone including this interview with the guys from YouTube:

And CNET picked this astoundingly innovative and open source BugLabs platform as its CES Awards winner for “emerging technologies.” I even like their video. Cool.

Johnny Chung Lee: My New Procrasteering, Low-Cost Electronic Whiteboard-Inventing Hero


After I discovered the YouTube video on 3-D virtual reality using Nintendo Wii hardware posted below by Johnny (Chung) Lee, I started digging deeper.

First, I discovered the YouTube video posted below about building a low-cost electronic whiteboard using the same Nintendo Wii hardware and custom software that he is giving away. Way cool!

Now, I’ve learned that Johnny has named his blog after a term I’ve never heard before and which I presume he invented, “procrastineering” which he says means “giving into productive distractions.” I can totally relate. I presume he means like me blogging right now instead of working, right? Johnny’s blog is http://procrastineering.blogspot.com/

And then (yes, there’s more), I found out that way back in 2000, he invented a $14 steadicam for videographers replacing that expensive piece of equipment that every semi-serious video camera person needs these days, but many cannot afford. He’ll even put one together for you and sell it for about $54 including shipping!

This guy’s so cool that he’s even put out a call for Mac developers to help him develop a Mac version of the Wiimote Whiteboard.

Johnny, I’m officially your fan. We even have the same “JL” initials. 😉 Great stuff.

The Rapid Demise & Eminent Death of Music DRM


Digital Rights Management (or DRM) has been a controversial subject against which I have pontificated for years, starting with the whole Napster thing in 2000. Ironically, in that article, I slammed Edgar Bronfman Jr. who is quoted prominently in this new Businessweek article about Sony BMG being “The last major label (to) throw in the towel on digital rights management…” Thanks for the link to this article goes to the TechCrunch postmortem, “Ding, Dong, The Music DRM Witch is Dead.”

I have to admit that the death of DRM is coming even more quickly than I expected, but we can all be glad that she is dying (and, I guess, that Bronfman is waking up).

If you really want to understand this subject, I highly recommend Free Culture: The Nature and Future of Creativity by the wise and articulate Lawrence Lessig.

Revolutionary gPC is a $200 Web-facing Computer with no “Microsoft tax”

This makes so much sense it’s scary. A $200 computer, by Google, on sale NOW at WalMart that leverages the power of the Internet with browser-based and open source software (thus no “Microsoft tax”).

I might just be geeky enough to go out and buy one. We’ll see. Meanwhile, click here for details of the Everex gPC as covered by John Biggs in the NYTimes.

This kind of “webtop” computer has been a long time coming, but frankly I’m a bit surprised that it’s finally here. That said, in the world of the Web, surprises never cease. Bottom line, I agree with TechCrunch‘s comment, “The Webtop is going to be a classic disruptive technology, starting out cheap and at the margins, but slowly working its way up the food chain.

Digital Photographer Transcends Parkinson’s Disease

A buddy of mine just got written up in our local paper for his talented transcendence of what others view as a disability. In fact, he’s dealing successfully with nothing less than Parkinson’s disease. Why aren’t your photos in a gallery? Read Clear vision, shaky lens: Fairfax photographer hasn’t let Parkinson’s slow him down and be inspired by the “Movement Disorder, Tremor Enhanced Photography” of Alan Babbitt.

Obama’s Grassroots Support Shown in Web Traffic & more

If you use website traffic (rather than polls which are probably more scientific) as an indication of voter interest, then the latest Hitwise statistics show Barack Obama well ahead of his Democratic competition.

Like the rest, he’s also using YouTube, among other online grassroots techniques. For example, it’s an indication of the word-of-mouth impact that many of his traffic referrals come from email systems (which translates as individuals forwarding links.)

Along those lines, this video clip references his huge crowds as evidence of something more meaningful. Frankly, I’m encouraged. Maybe it really can be different this time? What do you think?

Steve Jobs & Bill Gates Together, The Complete Coverage


I don’t think there are two better visionaries on the planet (of course, I’m partial to Steve Jobs), and while their joint appearance with Wall Street Journal’s Walt Mossberg was covered in the news, I just discovered the complete coverage including transcripts and video clips (an edit of video excerpts is included below). Good stuff!

Special thanks to Dr. Mac, Bob LeVitus for this link via his most-excellent Mac e-newsletter. You can subscribe here: http://www.boblevitus.com/

Here’s the video highlight reel:

Windows on the Mac Making Moves Toward Totally Transparent Integration

ParallelsMacs with Intel chips have been progressing toward total two-platform (Windows and Mac OS) integration on one desktop. Unfortunately, Apple’s BootCamp requires you to reboot.

Parallels Desktop 3.0 for Mac is just released and offers significant new features that really seem to enable a legitimate, simultaneous two-platform environment. Way cool! Now I just need to time to buy and install Windows XP on my Intel Mac and then to get Parallels going. As I like to say, “Time, not space, is the final frontier.” 😉

Anyway, The NYTimes’ David Pogue has written a pretty definitive review of the new version of Parallels Desktop for Mac including tests using powerful Windows voice recognition software. Bottom line, use Windows XP, not Vista!

Google Audio Ads Ramps Up Radio’s Reach

It’s been widely understood and acknowledged (ever since Google’s January 2006 acquisition of dMarc Advertising) that Google would be launching an interface to sell radio advertising based on it’s widely popular Google AdWords platform.

Well, the wait is over. It’s here. Now, anyone with an AdWords account can buy targeted radio advertising via a new tab at the top of their AdWords interface.

The impact of this innovation on the radio advertising industry cannot be overstated. Google facilitates the production of the spot as well as its placement (you can pick radio stations by audience demographic as well as geographic location, etc.). Thus this new service is truly revolutionary because it makes the whole process of advertising on local radio a whole lot easier and far more accessible than ever before.