Follow me on Twitter

I have caved in to micro-blogging. I’m on Twitter, which I keep mis-typing as Twister (Brain fail). You can follow me at http://twitter.com/justinno.

I remember when I was first told about twitter a couple years ago by @MatthewKrivanek. At the time, I couldn’t understand why anyone would be willing to blog about the mini-events of their day-to-day lives. It seemed a bit vain. The name “twitter” put me off, too — after all, “twit” doesn’t have the greatest of connotations.

A long while later I stumbled upon Mobog, which is a photosharing site that users can link up to their cell phones either via MMS or email (I use the latter as I have a Blackberry Curve and unlimited data). Mobog made sense to me almost immediately as it took a tool most people have, cameraphones, and enables individuals to take snapshots of their lives. I used mobog a great deal when I was traveling in India. My family thought it was great because they could follow along with me on my travels as they were happening. That may not seem like a big deal, but traveling is an inherently spontaneous adventure, by live-blogging it with pictures, family/friends can vicariously travel with you. You can even ask them from around the world if they would like some item at a store you’re at (I.e. bangles in Baroda).

In short, live-blogging via photos has been a lot of fun. Twitter is simply live-blogging with words or photos (via twitpic.com).

You’re still not convinced? Why the fuss? And isn’t this vain?

The fuss is simple. Full-on blogging serves a purpose, but takes a more concerted effort of time and energy. The cost of traditional blogging is not insignificant. The cost of micro-blogging via services like mobog or twitter, on the other hand, is next-to-nothing. I can quickly fire off a photo with a 100 character blurb on a dish I just made. I can micro-blog a sentence on a movie I just watched. It’s simple to fire off an email (or SMS). Since the expectation (nay limitation) on twitter is 140 characters, you can blog life that would otherwise fall through the cracks. Really, much of life is the stuff of tweets, where you go, what you see, what you eat or do — the stuff that stretches between the big events and big ideas you can blog 500+ words on.

Micro-blogging fills in the space between, thereby capturing much of the stuff of life.

Is it vain? Maybe but it is useful vanity. It keeps you plugged into your friends. In a way, it encourages you to be more active and do more interesting things. After all, if you’re only tweeting “just watched tv” for the umpteenth time, it won’t be long before you realize that a) no one cares and b) your life is kinda boring (not that I don’t watch tv).

Of course, getting your friends and family plugged in and using a service like twitter isn’t easy. But twitter is free and simple to set up. So give it a try and see if you aren’t surprised to find yourself a little addicted to micro-blogging.

You can follow my latest tweets either on twitter.com or at this site’s home page.

Admin Note: Now that I have twitter set up, I might discontinue mobog as it seems a bit redundant. Just FYI if you see my mobog disappear.

Mobogging India

In case you didn’t follow along, when my Blackberry was connected in India, I was frequently sending live pictures to my Mobog.

Connectivity plus photo-sharing (Admitting that cameraphone shots are poor quality) equals a great way to keep in touch with the folks you left back home. Examples:

Basically, camera-photo blogging while traveling makes for a lot of fun, and is much more efficient (a picture is worth a thousand words) than recanting your experiences over mass emails to friends/family.

I see a lot of potential for camera-phones being used in a blogging capacity. Snapping a quick photo and sending off an email on a Blackberry is just too easy and too quick.

Expect to see more adopt Mobog-like technology in the coming months and years.

Mobog

You might notice a new little ditty on the sidebar I’ve titled “Mobile JNO”. This is a widget from Mobog, which is a service whereby you can email (or MMS) pictures to Mobog to be published for the world to see (Here is my directory). Moboggers can comment on the photos, etc.

What’s the point? Mobog enables me to snap live-action shots on my Blackberry 8320 (Curve) and insta-post them to the ‘net, which then propagates seamlessly to the blog widget to the right.

We all see funny, bizarre or interesting stuff that we’d like to share with others. Mobog drastically reduces the cost of everyday photo-sharing by eliminating the hassle of getting a photo off your phone, up to a server, and onto your site. It’s easy.

Uses I could see for this service?

  • meal-blogging — its fun to share your home-cooked dishes with others, particularly others who are following somewhat unconventional diets.
  • exercise blogging — I could see some live-action photos a la Crossfit, Vibram Five Fingers in action, mountain biking snapshots, walks, etc.
  • economic happenings — with the economy imploding, shots from the frontlines might be interesting.
  • life’s little oddities — you know, the stuff like the “Please stand in line here” sign at the DMV — the line to take a number (I have this photo).
  • other ideas?

Mobog is a little thing, I know, but the little things give this site dimension, so I’m going to give it a try.