Archive for March, 2007

heart shaped peace sign

With all my heart, I wish everyone in the world, could hear this song, in their native language, close their eyes and hope for such a world and believe that it is possible.

Imagine by John Lennon

Imagine there’s no Heaven
It’s easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today

Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace

You may say that I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world

You may say that I’m a dreamer
But I’m not the only one
I hope someday you’ll join us
And the world will live as one

This moment brought to you in the spirit of Stop Cyberbullying Day March 30. Want to help? If you have a blog, post your support for this movement. Want to learn more? Check out Ning Stop Cyberbullying.

Peace Out.

There is an exciting article in the New York Times today on tagging, folksonomy and on line art collections. One Picture, 1,000 Tags.

What happens when you let the public tag art?

We would never say a work is mostly red, or instills a sense of ennui, or features a dog playing poker,” agreed Bruce Wyman, director of new technologies for the Denver Art Museum. “Tagging gives us a set of eyes we don’t have.”

“Our keywording was insufficient in a lot of ways,” said Effie Kapsalis, senior digital producer of the site. “There’s no taxonomic system that could cover the subjects of all these photographs. And we want a lot of tags for each image. So that’s why we turned to the public.”

“The results were staggering,” said Susan Chun, general manager for collections information planning at the Met. “There’s a huge semantic gap between museums and the public.”

I’m thrilled with the work that is happening around the steve.museum project. For example, explore the Powerhouse Museum’s online collection and see the ability to add keywords to any image.

Now I’m dreaming of how wonderful the world would be if we could have Google Art. I mean if Google can take on the concept of creating the digital library…why not do the same for the visual arts. Okay…so it is huge. But close your eyes and imagine if it were a reality. Imagine it was searchable, taggable, and helped you discover new artists you never knew about. Imagine if you could share your travel plans with GoogleArt and it could let you know about delicious small galleries you could visit on your next business trip. What if you could create an online digital collection and have it stream to your flatpanel TV screen…filling your living room with images of priceless art.

Does this cheapen art…or deepen your personal relationship with it? Does it make you never need to step foot in another museum…or does it make art and musuems so much a part of your everyday life that you find yourself drawn more and more to the physical galleries…because nothing, nothing is more powerful than standing in front of the original work of art?

(sigh)

Ready to make your Ajax fully accessible? Learn from the master, Derek Featherstone.

Real World Accessibility for Ajax and Web Apps May 7, 2007, The Alamo Drafthouse, Austin, Texas; Access U pre-conference workshop

This full-day workshop is designed for those that are building a modern web application that employs Ajax or JavaScript to enhance the user experience. The day will be filled with planning advice, practical examples, demonstrations of assistive technology, code samples and live walk-throughs of a variety of web applications – all to help you provide web applications that are both accessible and usable for as wide an audience as possible, regardless of their abilties.

The workshop will be great for those that are looking to use Ajax and heavy scripting to build accessible web applications but also has plenty of material for people that are involved in designing these applications without getting their hands on the complicated parts of the code.

We’re offering $100 off for anyone that is attending Access U. Seats in the workshop are limited, so register today!

See this event on upcoming.org

You can’t top this opportunity. A full day with Derek on Ajax followed by two days of the best Accessibility conference on the planet (AccessU).

Glenda and Rob. Photo taken by Rob Weychert

Sigh. Words cannot possibly describe the experience of SXSWi. It is true, this year’s event left me speechless (but smiling all the way to my heart). If you can’t imagine me at a loss for words, just ask Pixeldiva who saw me rendered speechless multiple times.

What is so magical about SX? Well…imagine…a place where there are no barriers to dreams, where ideas flow like a waterfall…drenching you with a creative fire so intense and pure that it feels like nirvana.

Moments of pure bliss for me this year include:

Delightful Discoveries

  • Meeting the wonderful Sue Clarke and taking a fieldtrip to Whole Foods with Money Lady and Malarkey.
  • Twitter and Dodgeball weren’t just noise. I experienced both of these tools connecting people. Filling in the spaces when physical distance can create barriers. Transforming an overwhelming large crowd into a network of friends.
  • Getting to meet the other Glenda!

Session Love

It would be impossible to tell you my favorite session…because everything was quite delicious. So…I’ll just mention a few that had me twittering “this is why I heart SXSW”:

  • Blogging Where Speech Isn’t Free – the work that global voices and Tor are doing to bring free speech via blogs to the people is momentous. I was inspired and humbled by the courage and resolve of these people.
  • Ajax Kung Fu Meets Accessibility Feng Shui – I was mesmerized by Neo Jeremy…he is indeed the Ajax Kung Fu Master. And Feather showed the way towards truly accessible Ajax. Heaven on earth.
  • WaSP Annual Meeting: Takin’ it to the Street – The WaSP is an amazing collection of passionate individuals who give their minds, hearts and souls to supporting efforts that help the web reach it’s full potential. Go WaSP!
  • The Influence of Art in Design – Yes…it is true. I was blown away by the other members of the panel. Even though we had met 5 times on skype and spent 2 hours together the day before playing in a museum…I still was moved and inspired by what my fellow panel members had to say. See our panel slides at theinfluenceofartindesign.com

IRL

What could possibly be the richest treasure of SX for me is turning virtual relationships into tangible ones. Spending quality time with Steph Troeth, Ralph Brandi and Kimberly Blessing (just to name a few) was priceless. The experience reminds me of how I describe art and technology. For me…the physical work of art is primary. Nothing is more sacred than the actual art object. When I add technology into the museum space my goal is to enhance your interaction with the object…but never to detract or get in your way. And indeed…I think of all my close friends as priceless works of art.

Best SXSW Ever

I echo what Craig Cook says about SXSWi2007. It was the best SXSW I’ve ever experienced. More meaningful connections. Deeper conversations. And over and over again I was struck by the fact that every person mattered. You would think that in the midst of this geek heaven…surrounded by thousands of brilliant minds…that you wouldn’t miss a friend or two who couldn’t be there this year. On the contrary…I personally felt a Hicks-sized hole in the event that not even FlatHicks could fill. And while we did our very best to virtually include everyone…it was good to know that no matter how amazing SX actual is…the event is truly about the people. So, to Hicks, Jessica, Kelly, John, Brothercake, Meri, Elly and everyone else who longed to be here…you were missed.

Once upon a time
there was a brilliant
(yet humble)
designer named Hicks.
His work was known
throughout the land.
He laughed often
and had won
the deep respect
of his peers.

Then, without warning
a very large
wheel of cheese
fell on Hicks.

THUMP

Suddenly,
Hicks was flat.

What in the world
will Flat Hicks do
in his two dimensional world?

Stayed tuned to find out!

The journey has begun toward SXSWi. You can see the city transform as an infusion of energy, ideas, brilliance and creativity pour in.

It is as though Austin is singing her siren song:

“Cut a path
across the blue skies.
Straight in a straight line
You can’t get here fast enough.
Run. – George Strait”

For a magical moment in time, SXSWi transforms Austin into a digital mecca.

Come thirsty.
Drink deeply.
Dream outside the lines.