Sprague Word

The future and more from Richard Sprague

Archive for August, 2010

iBook and the future of publishing

Posted by sprague on August 31, 2010

We are only a few years away from a time when most people read books online, a transformation as important to publishing as it was to, say, film cameras ten years ago. I’ve been playing with iBook and iTunes Connect (the entry point to people selling stuff on iTunes) and getting excited about how things will change when normal people have the ability to create and distribute book-length content as easily as they create podcasts today.

Yes, we’ll get a lot of crap.  How many amateur podcasts are really worth listening to?   But think of the amazing new content that previously didn’t see the light of day because it was too hard to distribute:

  • Teachers: lesson plans, supplemental materials
  • Religious organizations
  • Family histories: diaries, old letters, and other information of appeal to a tiny number of people
  • Kids: student newspapers, yearbooks.

Amazon has a similar system in place for Kindle, but that’s a proprietary format. iBook uses the ePUB standard that lets anyone at all go crazy publishing.

I can’t wait.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Posted by sprague on August 29, 2010

Lunch at Hard Rock Cafe Beijing. 50% discount because last time we tried to come, they were closed for a wedding. Best burger in Beijing.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Testing, testing

Posted by sprague on August 29, 2010

Is this thing on? Photo on 2010-08-28 at 15.11.jpg One unfortunate part about switching to Mac last year is that I’ve been unable to use the excellent Windows Live Writer blogging software (cuz it’s Windows only). Everyone says I need to get MarsEdit — the standard for Mac blogging — so finally today I downloaded it and am taking it for a spin.

Tried it on my main blog and my Tumblr blog too.

What do you think?

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Testing, testing

Posted by sprague on August 28, 2010

The greatest joy for a man is to defeat his enemies, to drive them before him, to take from them all they possess, to see those they love in tears, to ride their horses, and to hold their wives and daughters in his arms.

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/gnxp/2010/08/1-in-200-men-direct-descendants-of-genghis-khan/

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

MarsEdit publishing to Tumblr

Posted by sprague on August 28, 2010

Tumblr is a wonderful blogging platform: great for quick, spontaneous posting, but what good is it if you can’t post using Windows Live Writer?  Fortunately, there’s no such problem on the Mac, which lets you easily post with MarsEdit.

Maybe a little too easy.  Here’s a random guy who saw me with a camera the other day at the Shanghai Expo and he didn’t like me taking photos of the police intervening in a dispute among some other people standing in line.

Hey! Don’t post this picture!

Shanghai Expo 2010

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

How to make a long tweet text

Posted by sprague on August 14, 2010

1. Substitute whatever you want into the “LONG_TWEET_TEXT” on this link: http://twitter.com/share?text=&url=LONG_TWEET_TEXT

2. Hit return and Twitter will give you back a short-form URL.

3. Tweet that URL. On the web version of Twitter, it will be expanded as a full item.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Why China is more free than America

Posted by sprague on August 6, 2010

America’s a nice place — my favorite in the world. But there are so many regulations and restrictions that it’s losing its title as “the home of the free.”  Contrast it with China, where not only are you free to sell food without displaying the calorie counts, you can also do many other things without the Nanny State interfering:

   * You can smoke in a bar.

   * Your children can go to a grocery store and buy some beer for you.

   * You can ride your bike or motorcycle without a helmet.

   * I don’t know for sure, but I bet you can perform an appendectomy on a friend.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Getting squeezed by 140 chars. Time to Tumblr

Posted by sprague on August 5, 2010

Getting squeezed by 140 chars. Time to Tumblr

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »

Only old people should have tattoos

Posted by sprague on August 5, 2010

What happens when young people get tired of their tattoos?  And it must happen a LOT.

You change your mind like a girl changes clothes – Katy Perry

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »