Sunday, December 29, 2013

Restarting, Reclaiming the Out of Context Experience

I have things I want to say.

This blog was originally conceived, back in 2006, as a personal adjunct to the main corporate blog over at FeedBlitz, the company I founded and am still, incredibly, joyously, running as CEO.

Running the company has taken much from me and this blog was never really touched since it was created. It's lain fallow for the best part of seven years.

No more.

I need to write. I need to do work - of the difficult, challenging, internal mental, spiritual and emotional kind - and writing about my journey is going to be part of how I deal with what's been going on this last year and change, and where I'm going.

The Out of Context Experience (OOCE) is therefore going to be extremely, unapologetically, and unabashedly personal. It will be raw. It will be, I expect, at times painful to write, and I'm doing this for me, not you, so you come here at your own risk and I've no idea what it's going to be like to read. More to the point, I'm not going to worry about how it is to read. I'm writing for my benefit, not yours. You're welcome to read and to follow, but you're not my concern. Sucks to be you, huh? Deal with it.

It will also be, at times, NSFW. I'm not saying it's going to be all doom and gloom, fuck this and shit that, by any means. One of my weaknesses is that I like to please people, to make them happy. So I'll probably try to make some of this shit funny or at best wryly amusing when I can.

Why write here? Well, as some of my friends will attest, I like to talk. A lot. The things I'm thinking about, working on, feeling about are completely inappropriate for the corporate blog, and are far, far too long for Facebook.

Which is a long way of saying, if for some ungodly reason you are subscribed to this blog from however many moons ago, you might want to consider unsubscribing. The change of direction is happening as of now. This is about to get a whole lot of real; don't say you weren't warned.

So, then, why now?

I have things I want to say.

It's time I said them.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Introducing the Out of Context Experience

Following our new investment I now have more time to focus on FeedBlitz, and so (with a certain degree of inevitability) I'm starting a new blog. This blog, "Out of Context Experience" (or OOCE for short), is where I will from time to time comment on the evolution of FeedBlitz, its (and my) trials and successes as we move forward, as well as using the blog as a forum for, um, well, whatever seems appropriate. I'm not sure what those items might be, so for the moment I'll fall back to the "I'll know it when I see it" criteria.

Meanwhile, the current "FeedBlitz News" blog will continue, serving as the place to go for updates on the site and service itself. If you're a FeedBlitz subscriber or publisher, I thoroughly recommend subscribing to that blog.

So, what is an "Out of Context Experience"? It's a little of what I'm experiencing now - running a startup, taking investment: all these things are new to me, even though they are built on all my previous technology and business experience. So hence the name. The title also relates to the "Out of Context Problem" (OCP) articulated by my favorite science fiction author, Iain M. Banks. (Nobody would describe me as having a penchant for the classics...). Now, I don't want to name my blog as a "problem," but I believe that "web 2.0" technologies, of which FeedBlitz is a growing part, do provide an out of context problem for legacy technology businesses. So the association seems powerful. And an OCP? Here's how Banks wrote about it in his novel "Excession":

"An Outside Context Problem was the sort of thing most civilisations encountered just once, and which they tended to encounter rather in the same way a sentence encountered a full stop. The usual example given to illustrate an Outside Context Problem was imagining you were a tribe on a largish, fertile island; you'd tamed the land, invented the wheel or writing or whatever, the neighbours were cooperative or enslaved but at any rate peaceful and you were busy raising temples to yourself with all the excess productive capacity you had, you were in a position of near-absolute power and control which your hallowed ancestors could hardly have dreamed of and the whole situation was just running along nicely like a canoe on wet grass... when suddenly this bristling lump of iron appears sailless and trailing steam in the bay and these guys carrying long funny-looking sticks come ashore and announce you've just been discovered, you're all subjects of the Emperor now, he's keen on presents called tax and these bright-eyed holy men would like a word with your priests."