NNW on Ars

Congrats to Brent and Sheila for their 9 out of 10 Ars Technica review. NNW would have to be my favourite app and I recommend it to anyone on Mac OS X looking to get into RSS reading. Ars Technica, for those that don’t know of it, is a geek news/review/forum site that is highly regarded in the net world. So a 9 out of 10 is a very high accolade indeed.

Worn again

Treehugger: Born Again – More Than Just Funky Footwear:

Worn Again take materials like charity store coats, ex-military parachutes, prison blankets, car seat scrap leather, old towels and recycled rubber, crafting them into some funky looking trainers (that’s British for sports shoe).

Looks interesting, except for one chink in the armour: “They openly tell you a factory in China will make them, but one that honours international standards of social accountability, quality and environmental management.”

I’m extremely sceptical of such claims. But credit for being so up-front about it. My question would be – does the factory allow snap inspections by third-parties to verify/audit their operations? Somehow, given the Chinese political climate, I doubt it.

Forgetting feature requests

37signals: Getting Real: Forget feature requests. [via Seth Godin]

How do you track all these requests? You don’t. Read them and then throw them away.

Yup, read them and throw them away. The ones that are really important will keep bubbling up. And those are the ones you’ll remember. Those are the important ones. You don’t need to track or remember everything – let your customers be your memory. They’ll remind you.

My experience matches what Jason describes. The tough part, for sure, is working out how to keep things simple as you add more to a product. In the case of NETaccounts, I think the balance has been lost to a degree with the recent 4.0 launch, which introduces the single most requested feature – item-based invoicing.

It’s kind of like the difference between XML-RPC/SOAP or RSS/Atom – one does the job because it doesn’t do everything, the other has it’s uses, but uptake/usability is limited.

Senate sold…

Senator Andrew Bartlett: Telstra Sold – Senate Sold Out:

I can’t think of a single example in all my experience [over 15 years] where such total arrogance and contempt for the Parliamentary process was displayed. Of course, the one thing that is different now than at any other time in the last 24 years is that the Government has a majority in its own right in the Senate.

Any hope that the Liberal and National parties might not use this smallest of majorities to trash the entire purpose and role of the Senate was obviously forlorn.

Make Poverty History

BrandChannel: Make Poverty History – Passion statement:

“Brand” and “charity” — many people still feel uncomfortable uttering these words in the same breath. Some of the members that make up Make Poverty History’s coalition still feel uneasy about combining the two. But as Live8 (a worldwide series of concerts staged to focus the world’s attention on decisions being made at the G8 summit) proved in July, Make Poverty History is a brand, and a powerful one at that.

Mmmm… cookies…

John Udell: Lessons from the cookie laboratory:

Striking a balance between an architecture of participation and an architecture of control is a central concern for all kinds of product development.

Jon links a couple of interesting perspectives on open source software development. I remember hearing an IT Conversations podcast, from the Open Source Business conference if I remember correctly (unfortunately I can’t remember who the speaker was), making a similar point.