Side Project #1 – A&E Attendance Figures in Ireland

Public data and public information interests us a lot in Electric Mill. A good reason for this is that you will often find that government agencies, departments and other public bodies – while they may publish information – will normally do so in formats which while fulfilling duty, are not exactly easy to read, interpret or compare.

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Resolution of a CSS styling issue running PHP5 on IIS

A small piece of development work that we completed for a client in December 2007 threw up an unexpected problem.

We developed a small PHP based application to enable staff to easily import and validate data from a Lotus Notes system through an administration console, while at the same time enabling the public to easily search and view the same data.

Things were slightly complicated by the fact that the application was to seamlessly integrate with an existing ASP.Net CMS application – particularly with regard to the overall look and feel. the illusion to be created was of one system.

It would not be the first time that PHP has been asked to co-exist on an IIS server. We did our research, developed the system, did test Read more

Are viral internet marketing campaigns just pot luck?

This paragraph, deep down in a Fast Company article questioning the fundamental reasonings behind The Tipping Point summed up the argument nicely :

Perhaps the problem with viral marketing is that the disease metaphor is misleading. Watts thinks trends are more like forest fires: There are thousands a year, but only a few become roaring monsters. That’s because in those rare situations, the landscape was ripe: sparse rain, dry woods, badly equipped fire departments. If these conditions exist, any old match will do. “And nobody,” Watts says wryly, “will go around talking about the exceptional properties of the spark that started the fire.”

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Notes from Web2Expo Conference

The following notes were taken from talks I attended this morning. The content has also syndicated to Web2Ireland.

Business Models for Web 2.0 Companies

Christian Leybold of BV Capital provided a good overview of business models (all advertising) and statistics – sites used as examples during the presentation are BV investment companies)

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Workshop Day at Web2Expo Berlin

Have spent the morning and early afternoon so far – flitting between the various workshops. Stowe Boyd unsurprisingly – had a full house for his pitch – likewise, Kathy Sierra’s session on creating passionate users.

Have met up with some of the Irish contingent – Brian O’Malley and Jonathan from EI, Benjamin Mosse of AP in New York and James Galvin.

Wifi access has only now started to cope with demand – my attempts to microblog to Twitter or Jaiku via my Nokia 770 might have been successful early on as I managed to corral one of the hens teeth-like IP addresses – but I was then cruelly thwarted by problems with actually using “Post” on Jaiku, or actually even logging using Twitter.

Travelling to Web2Expo Berlin

I’m travelling to the Web2Expo Conference in Berlin today thanks to the guys in Web2Ireland. Fours days was just too much for me though – I travel back to Ireland on Wednesday afternoon. I’m currently in the airport, reviewing the lineup and deciding what I can or cannot get to – should be fun.Of course, I will probably also use the occasion of the event to finally drop the wraps on some stuff I’ve been working on over the past number of weeks – part skunworks, part public good – a bit of a combination.

Another by product should be more insight for a paper I am presenting at the HISI conference later this month entitled “Web2.0 and Healthcare : Avoiding Hype, Reaping Benefits”. More information over on the blog I maintain which discusses the use of IT and Technology in Healthcare – I’ve thrown out an invitation to ask people for items that I should cover and discuss in the presentation.