Trimming in Public – Part 6

Clearing out my RSS, 10 feeds at a time –



Let’s do this –

Creative Social Blog
It took me a good five minutes to work out how or why I was subscribed to this blog in the first place. I think it was back in Feb 2012 when I read about one of their events, ‘F*** that’s good‘. ‘This event looks ace!’ I thought, promptly buying two tickets for a friend and I. Mentioned as the very last item on this list, I really don’t think it’s good enough to stay.
Decision: Remove

Criterion Games
The blog of the developers behind one of the most epic run of racing games ever (read: the Burnout collection), Criterion Games don’t really update that much. Even less so since they were bought by EA and subsequently handed the keys to the Need for Speed franchise. However I really can’t bring myself to unsubscribe because a) they seem like an awesome bunch of guys and b) the Burnout Paradise 2 rumour mill has recently started churning and well, I’m staying tuned.
Decision: Keep

Dan’s Blog (2.0)
The blog of one Daniel K. Appelquist. Product Manager at BlueVia, founder of a whole ton of mobile-related good stuff, and generally one of the smartest mobile web-heads I know. My RSS has a fair sprinkling of big thinkers and Dan is one of them. This one is easy.
Decision: Keep

Darth Mojo
Man, this makes me sad. I looked up this link and thinking: ‘What’s this one?’ – arrived, saw that there’d been no updates since Nov ’11 and thought, ‘What the hell did I subscribe for?’. Then I clocked it: Mojo used to be the visual effects supervisor on Babylon 5, Star Trek: Voyager, and Battlestar Galactica – his blog is a GOLD MINE of awesome geeky stuff. But, as I said, alas he hasn’t posted since 2011 and well, that sucks.
Decision: Remove

Dear London Town
The blog of lovely american Kate Matlock. I like Kate so Kate’s blog can stay.
Decision: Keep

Design Idea
Interaction designer, ex-googler-now-at-Fjord-er, Rebecca Cottrell, has a unique way of looking at the world. You should see it some time.
Decision: Keep

design mind – business. technology. design.
I initially signed up to Frog’s blog purely to catch the occasional post from long-time industry hero of mine, Jan Chipchase. But now I just read it because it’s awesome. You should too.
Decision: Keep

(dot dot dot) Lies the Universal
The blog of the illustrator and writer Morgan Jeske. He’s not blogging here anymore, but hey! He’s on Twitter, so I guess that’s OK.
Decision: Remove

Eat Sleep Social – Mike Phillips
I like smart social people. Mike Phillips is a smart social plannery person. He gets to stay.
Hey Mike! Blog more, yeah?
Decision: Keep

Elise Pearce
I’m quite sad that Elise has stopped blogging (I haven’t seen her in AGES) but she’s an ACE photographer so go check her out on Flickr instead. I can’t remove it, just in case she makes a comeback. Maybe…
Decision: Keep


Part 7 coming soon (when I get ’round to it).

Trimming in Public – Part 5

Cleaning out my RSS, ten feeds at a time –

James Whatley / BW


Let’s do this –

blending the mix
The blog of northern digital/social specialist, Paul Fabretti – I think this may have been one of the first/earliest subscriptions back in the day and I’ve also had a the good fortune of getting to meet Paul from time to time too. He doesn’t blog that often (he’s a busy boy), but when he does – I always read it. If you’re into social media / digital and want to keep an eye on people doing things differently, Paul’s blog is one to read.
Decision: Keep 

Blog O HAI
I met Mark Burstiner at the Web 2.0 Expo in New York City about four years ago. We hit it off right away and basically had a blast the entire time we hung out. Back when I was ‘that Brit doing social media’, word got ’round pretty quick and a couple of days later, when Mark and I ran into each other again (this time at the Blog World Expo in Vegas) he made sure that I got to meet everyone and anyone he could introduce me to. From Gary V and Brett Petersel through Pistachio and Pete Cashmore, Mark intro’d me to them all - and it was awesome.

Back to the blogging bit – of late Mark has been working his ass off getting his (quite frankly, brilliant) gaming-based start up, ‘FTW‘,  off the ground so blogging hasn’t been his number one priority. Look, we chat enough over Twitter and Xbox mail as it is.
Decision: Remove

Brandflakes for Breakfast
Top five all time number one blogs to read for keeping up to date with the latest advertising, creative, innovation and online (viral) video. If you’re in the industry, you should be reading this. And if you’re launching something cool and you want the industry to know about, you should let these guys know too.
Decision: Keep

Brown Cardigan
There are a few things on this list that I have no explanation for. Brown Cardigan is one of them. It publishes far too much for my normal RSS reader liking, and by rights I should remove it. BUT… it’s everything that’s good and bad about the internet all together in one place and it’s where I go to LAUGH MY FACE OFF – and y’know what? I make no apologies for it. You have been warned. It’s staying because I LOVE LOVE LOVE the faces of the people on the tube in the mornings who happen to catch it over my shoulder.
Decision: Keep

Campaign Against Living Miserably
Suicide is the biggest killer of young men under 35 in the UK today. C.A.L.M. is a charity that’s been set up to help reduce that staggering statistic. Go. Read. Be inspired.
Decision: Keep

Chris Funderburg’s Place
I spoke about Chris back in part one. This blog isn’t around anymore, but the one in part one is. So that’s all decided then.
Decision: Remove
A great blogger and a great guy, if you’re thinking about doing anything blog related, be it business or personal, you could do a lot worse than spending a couple of days routing around in Chris’ archives. One of the good guys, I’ve always got time for Chris.
Decision: Keep

Ciaran’s Blog
God knows when Ciaran last blogged. It certainly wasn’t recently. I guess, being CTO of Skimlinks doesn’t allow for that kind of thing much these days. Damn shame. Still, lovely guy. Follow him on Twitter instead.
Decision: Remove

Colin Mercer On The Inter-Web
Used to work with Colin back at the ‘heads. He blogs fairly infrequently about Oxford Digital life and cricket. Two things that I don’t have much opinion on. If I’m being harsh on topics, I should remove… BUT he hasn’t blogged since June so that also weighs in against him too.
Decision: Remove

A fairly NSFW blog setup for the sole purpose of naming and shaming advertising ‘creatives’ who serve up yesterday’s YouTube fodder as tomorrow’s ‘big idea’. Honestly, it has to be seen to be believed. I love it, and it really doesn’t publish enough.
Decision: Keep


Part 6 when I get ’round to it.


Trimming in Public – Part 4

Cleaning out my RSS, ten feeds at a time –

Background + parts 1, 2 and 3 also available.

Shall we?

Anssi Mäkelä
Ex-client, but still a mate. Anssi hasn’t blogged in so long that his URL is now up for sale. We’re friends on Facebook, so what the hell?
Decision: Remove

atmaspheric | endeavor
Jonathan Greene is a) a great guy b) a smart chap and c) head of super smart stuff at R/GA NY. All of these things (especially ‘a’), make this one an easy choice.
Decision: Keep

A relative newcomer to the RSS reader, Austin Madison is an animator at Pixar and his blog is a BLAST. Case in point, this recent post about a Batman-related sketch game he played with a friend.

The output is awesome –

Decision: Keep

Babbling VC
I can’t remember how or why I came across Paul Jozefak, I think he was of SpinVox’s first German users and we got chatting over Twitter one day. Anyway, as the title suggests, Paul is a venture capitalist based in Hamburg and his blog is a great insight into the world of funding start ups. I like it, and I like him.
Decision: Keep

Bastian Lehmann
I used to work with Basti at Refresh Mobile, about six years ago(!!!), and we’ve always had a decent admiration for each other’s hair-brained approach to creativity and ideas… These days he’s working his backside off over in San Francisco, as founder and CEO of awesome quick delivery service, Postmates. Basti’s never been a big blogger, so it’s no surprise that his site is no longer active. Ah well, I’ll just stalk him on Twitter instead.
Decision: Remove

BBH Labs
This is one of those blogs that doesn’t publish often but, when it does, it pushes and challenges my own thinking virtually every single time. I can’t recommend it enough. Basically, if you’re not reading this, then you’re an idiot. The end.
Decision: Keep

Be Inspired
The blog of Mediavest’s EVP, Steven Wolfe Pereira, I literally have no idea whether to keep it or not. He’s nuts. Like proper mad as a box of frogs nuts. Mediaczar put me onto him yonks ago; some of his stuff I read, some of his stuff I skip over and never look back. Actually, the really good stuff is actually bloody great. So…
Decision: Keep 

Ben Ayers
I’ve known Ben through ‘the industry’ for fair few years now, first when he was doing social at ITV and now, as head of social media at Carat. He’s a good chap, but for some reason his blog no longer works. Rubbish. Sort it out Ben!
Decision: Remove 

Quite literally the best video blog I subscribe to.
Quite possibly the only video blog I subscribe to.
Quite definitely the best video blog in the world.
The end.
Decision: Keep 

Ben’s Posterous Blog
The posterous blog of one Ben Smith. Mobile-blogger (currently one third of the 361 Degrees Podcast), smart chap and long-time friend of mine, Ben’s blog is one of those things that I subscribe to and then kind of forget about [he doesn’t post that often – not here at least] but then get pleasantly surprised again when new content appears. Case in point, this rather blog post about London 2012. Check it.
Decision: Keep 


Part 4 is in the bag, part 5 when I get ’round to it.

Whatley out.



Trimming in Public – Part 3

Cleaning out my RSS, ten feeds at a time. Parts one (including an explanation of the exercise) and two are in the bag, so let’s crack on with part three –

Alec Baldwin
This is the feed from Alec Baldwin’s semi-regular column over at The Huffington Post. I don’t read the Huff, but I do read Alec Baldwin. Intelligent, witty, worldly, entertaining and overall a brilliant thought leader, Baldwin is one of those irregular posters who I get excited about every time I see the ‘(1) unread’ light up next to his name. Read this.
Decision: Keep

Alfred App
Vero Pepperrell (and her husband Andrew) designed the theme for this blog back when they were getting their business off the ground. One of their ‘side’ projects (which has since grown and grown and grown) is Alfred App, a Mac OSX Quicklaunch Application. This is their blog. I’ve got Alfred installed, and I’m a subscriber to their newsletter too so I don’t really need to be subscribed to the blog anymore. HOWEVER, if you’re looking for the defacto search app for Mac, then look at Alfred. He’s awesome.
Decision: Remove

All About Symbian – News
This is the first of non-full feeds that I’ve come across. I’ve explained RSS before, however, if RSS readers are hooks that pull in fresh content from websites across the world, then the non-full RSS feed is the equivalent of bagging an old leathery boot. Yeah, it feels like you’ve got a bite, but when it lands on the boat there’s only a soggy title and the first 90 or so words of the content. Rubbish.

There’ll be a fair few items that get thrown out for not being ‘full feed’, but All About Symbian isn’t one of them (yet). The authors of this site know their onions and, given that the Symbian platform is on its way out, I can’t see this lasting much longer. However, while it *is* here, I want to read it.
Decision: Keep (for now)

The blog of ex-Nokian marketing guru, Dan Goodall, ALL THAT IS GOOD is a though-provoking read. If you’re in creative strategy, and/or marketing activation around digital/social media and you have an interest in community building and content co-creation, then Dan’s blog is well worth a read. Yes, I just spewed forth a whole ton of social media garbage, but Dan knows his stuff and was creating online brand equity while you were still in nappies. He doesn’t blog too often, but when he does – you read it, and you pay attention. Got it? Good. All good.
Decision: Keep 

Allix: this is my brain on…
No updates since December 2009. I love you, Allix, but you’re crap at blogging.
Decision: Remove

Alone in the Dark
Well-written film reviews. Short, sharp and an enjoyable read.
Decision: Keep

Al’s Blog
My friend Alex Barclay blogs in fits and starts; sometimes going for months on end without an update, he’ll suddenly go daily for a two week period and then close up again, like nothing had ever happened. Alex and I used to tread the boards together (well, we did two plays) and, as a budding actor in Londontown, his blog can be an amusing read. I love him dearly and, better yet, he knows how to write too.
Decision: Keep

An International Smoothie
There isn’t much I can say about Sam Ismail. He disappeared a while back and, if there’s any truth to what went down, he’s going to stay that way for a very long time. Take care Sam, wherever you are.
Decision: Remove

Andrew Currie on WordPress
Dead blog. Andrew has since moved on (I’ll talk about how awesome he is when I get to his other RSS feed later on in ‘O’ – I’m sure).
Decision: Remove
The blog of 1000heads creative director (and one of my closest friends), Robbie Dale. Described as ‘a record of the beautiful, inspiring and constantly surprising world we live in’ – Robbie’s content is often as interesting as it is surprising. Not a bad insight into what makes creative people tick; take a look.
Decision: Keep


Part four, coming soon.

Whatley out.


Trimming in Public – Part 2

I’m publicly sorting through my RSS feed, ten feeds at a time.
Background (and part 1) posted last week.

Next ten, here we go –

501st TK Project
We’re into part two and we hit the first of my geeky/arty subscriptions that help connect things in a different way. The 501st TK Project is, believe it or not, an entire blog dedicated to Stormtrooper Helmet mods. No, no really. IT IS AWESOME. Well, it was. The last post went live on Christmas Eve 2010 and there hasn’t been one since. I’ve no idea why. Sad really. The blog is still live so you’re still able to check out the community submissions however, for the purpose of this exercise, it’s time to cut.
Decision: Remove 

Ha! Hilariously this is the ex-tumblr of one Stefan Constantinescu – the chap that originally inspired this series of posts (and someone with whom I’m now podcasting – more on that, later) God knows when he stopped tumbling, but it looks like the blog is dead. So… even though it started out well… it’s time to say goodbye.
Decision: Remove 

:: gia’s blog ::
Gia Milinovich is a lovely woman. I first met her at the original Tuttle club (or maybe perhaps through Seesmic, I forget) and the soft, warm american drawl had me at hello. These days, she’s known as Mrs Brian Cox (something she’s written about also) but having worked on everything from X-Files through to Indiana Jones (and a fair bit inbetween) her blog is quite frankly, excellent.
Decision: Keep

a binary life (aka ‘the typing monkey’)
The blog of my friend Ana Bee. Ana and I met on the now-defunct (but fondly remembered) Finnish social network, Jaiku. A former Londoner who now lives back in her native Poland, Ana’s distinct point of view on the world is one that I quite enjoy. That as well being quite bonkers means that her blog gets to stay.
Decision: Keep 

a Brilliant Blog
Brilliant by name, brilliant by nature – I met Jeb Brilliant at Mobile World Congress several years back. We’ve met up several times since then, even managing to work together on both Mobile Geeks of LA + Las Vegas, and he’s a great guy. A massive mobile head, like me, his opinions often jive with mine – so I like to read them.
Decision: Keep 

A smidge of what I fancy
I love Peter Hay. The end.
Decision: Keep

About Foursquare
When I was working at the ‘heads (and constantly getting my inner creative technologist on), being on top of the latest and greatest developments across multiple social networks was part of the game. About Foursquare, the unofficial source for all things related to the location-based service, was one of my tools (and it helped). Lately, it’s mainly been about badges and promotions but, that aside, it’s still a good way to keep an eye on what brands are doing in this space. It’s rare that anything gets missed, and on that basis alone, it stays.
Decision: Keep 

Adam Greenfield’s Speedbird
Futurologist, ex-Nokian and author (of the fantastic ‘Everyware: the dawning age of of ubiquitous computing’), Adam Greenfield is one helluva smart guy. I saw him speak once, at Nokia Open Labs 2008, where he discussed how the line between man and machine will continually blur over the coming years and used the humble contact lens as his example. While he doesn’t blog that much these days, he’s still an engaging writer and, when he does put e-pen to e-paper, I’m all ears / eyes.
Decision: Keep 

The blog of Saatchi & Saatchi strategy director, Richard Huntington. I like it.
Decision: Keep 

Creative inspiration from Darryl, Bill and Angela. I found this blog after following Darryl there after he left his switched from Brandflakes for Breakfast (another great source of interesting advertising stuff). There’s a whole bunch of cool stuff that gets chucked out several times a day. Good to keep an eye on what’s going on out in the industry. Especially good for ‘Yeah, been done’ conversations.
Decision: Keep 

Part two finished. Part three coming at some point in the future.
Meanwhile, while we’re sharing, do have any suggestions for blogs I should be reading?

Let me know.

Muchos gracias.


Trimming in Public – Part 1

Where do I start?

About three years ago, a good chap I know decided he’d ‘become a better blogger‘, by cleaning out his RSS reader in public. I can’t remember how far he got (Did you actually finish it, Stefan?), but I remember reading avidly.

For those that don’t know, RSS, is a really easy way to consume web-based content. Imagine every site you look at, every blog you read, has a hook attached to it. That’s its RSS feed. Every time new content gets published, a new hook is added. Simple. An RSS reader is your fishing rod; trawling the internet looking for new hooks. You add a website’s RSS feed to your reader and, whenever a new hook appears, the reader picks it up, and brings the content attached, to you. I use Google Reader, but other readers are available. Also, Stefan’s original post has a fairly decent guide to RSS as well.

Where was I? 

That’s right, I’m taking out the trash. Ever since Google Reader went from being awesome to just ‘OK’, my intake of cool stuff has dropped a fair bit. To continue curating and preening, I’m going to publicly air my laundry – aka ‘trimming in public’ – hopefully making some room for more feeds and generally sharing the wealth of content that I’ve picked up over the years.

As Stefan so eloquently puts it –

With 293 RSS feeds and only 24 hours in my day, I desperately need to trim this sucker down. I used to be able to “hit zero,” also known as reading all my RSS items, but lately it has been impossible. I could have done this in private, during my own time, but one man’s garbage is another man’s treasure. By going through my entire list of 293 RSS feeds, 10 feeds a day, I hope that I can point you to some new sites and services you may have never heard of. I also have a strong ethos regarding sharing. If I find something interesting, awesome or worthy of attention, I share it with my friends and with the world on my Twitter account. I expect people to do the same and at the end of the day we, as a people, will put an end to boredom.

And I’m all for it.

I’ve got 279 (so not too dissimilar).
10 feeds an episode (that’s around 28 blog posts).
Numbers through letters (1-Z).

Let’s do this.

1000heads | Socialcast Activity Stream
Back at the ‘heads, we used Socialcast as our internal social network of choice. Very similar to Facebook (and Jaiku, actually) it was a great way to share information across the company. I don’t work at 1000heads anymore, so the internal RSS feed of all goings on should definitely go.
Decision: Remove

1000heads: The Word of Mouth People
Still with the ‘heads as we make our way through the numbers, this is the blog of my former employer and, from time to time, it’s still a bloody good read. Molly, Riccardo, lately Patrick, and sometimes even Robbie, all (semi-)regularly contribute to pull different insights from in and around all things word of mouth. An interesting nexus of offline, online, social media and experiential ideas; this relationships agency blog is a keeper.
Decision: Keep

101 Things to Do in London
I met Ben Wallace back in April 2011, on the Transmongolian Railway – and I honestly could not have asked for a better travel buddy. There were four of us all thrown together that month, but Ben and I giggled and laughed like a couple of long lost best mates the whole way through (sometimes, with hats). 101 Things to Do in London is his attempt at trying to complete the Timeout 101 things to do in London before the Olympic games. Boldly assisted by his other half, Fliss, 101TTDIL is not only quite a fun read but also a handy guide to what is and what isn’t, worth your tourist money here in London town. Ben hasn’t got long left, so I’m staying tuned.
Decision: Keep

101 W*nkers
I am massively disappointed that this site has stopped publishing. From the looks of the page now, the URL hasn’t been renewed either (and has been bought by ads asking me if I’m into wife-swapping – ooer). What 101W used to be a catalogue of the insults and comments Guardian journalist, Dawn Foster, had shouted at her whilst riding her bike (the older and out of date 101W Tumblr site is still around, for reference purposes). I don’t know why she’s stopped writing, but now the site is gone I guess my choice is easy.
Decision: Remove

Martin Bryant is a smart chap. He’s sharp and I like his writing but I guess being Managing Editor at The Next Web is kind of a busy gig, as this blog hasn’t been updated since July 2009. Definitely time for some RSS house-keeping here… But, hang on, having a kick around Martin’s profile on TNW and I’ve found his new blog – Guess I’ll be subscribing to that then. In the meantime however, 14sandwiches can go.
Decision: Remove

25 lttrs n th alphbt
The blog of a senior planner bloke from advertising agency, DARE. This very occasionally updated blog provides rants, moans and sometimes even insights around all things advertisingy. That aside,  Nick Emmel is a lovely chap, and once wore my indian headress.
Decision: Keep

(365) Things That Make Me Happy

Back in my SpinVox days, Chris Funderberg was one of the badasses that worked down in the IT room. The man got stuff done, and rarely took any prisoners. I remember having a few interesting chats with him over the two years we spent working under the same roof together, on a myriad of subjects, and his tumblr blog is a definite fave. Initially setup as a 365 project (blog one thing that makes you happy, for every day in the year) he’s now dropped the 365 and has continued posting his happiness for a good couple of years. Great imagery, quotes and druidism.
Decision: Keep

Defunct blog of an ex-employer’s ex-client’s community.
Decision: Remove

4 Fuks Saké
A relatively new addition to my Google Reader, I’ve not read enough to make an informed decision. Although if Jim’s last post ‘Hey Guys, I’m A Bit Uncomfortable You Made A $1bn. Let’s Have A Diet Coke And Talk.‘ is anything to go by, it’s a keeper.
Decision: Keep

Without doubt the best Foursquare app to ever grace a Symbian mobile phone, 4squick is a gorgeous piece of software. Alas, a few things are working against it staying: First, the developers have a fair bit on their collective plates (babies and new jobs and all sorts), second, I no longer have a Symbian phone (that I use regularly) and third, the Symbian platform is on its way out.
Decision: Remove

Part one complete. Part two to come when I get ’round to it.