News, views and what I choose to dos



Author Archives: Kieren

Domainpulse in Vienna

I am going to have to make a determined effort to update this blog more often. I always feel better when I am writing. Anyway, just as an update: I am currently in New Delhi in the Maurya Hotel following a busy conference week. I’ll be heading to the airport soon to go to Paris, where I hope to meet up with various folk that are integral to the next two conferences coming up both in June: the OECD ministerial in Seoul, followed immediately afterwards by the next ICANN meeting in Paris.

But in between, and for Thursday and Friday this week, I will be at Domainpulse in Vienna giving a talk partly about my book, Sex.com, and partly about the history of making money from domain names. You can see the full programme here. It should be interesting: Wolfgang Kleinwachter, Peter van Roste, Sabine Dolderer, Patrik Faltström, Daniel Karrenberg plus a number of people I have yet to meet and look forward to doing so. If you’re going, see you there.

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Hey, ho, Delhi here we go

I’m writing this in that neverworld of an airport waiting for a slightly delayed plane.

And, of course, as it always is, that airport is Heathrow. I hate Heathrow. I’ve always hated Heathrow. Even as a kid, I remember the sensation of life ebbing away from you as you sit in uncomfortable chairs next to grumpy people, eat dreadful food and get annoyed with snooty staff. It’s Heathrow, it’s British Airways, it’s delayed, and I’m flying economy, seat 49J, which means no sleep, cramped legs, and an incredibly frustrating effort trying to do work on my laptop for the next nine hours.

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Too much bloody work

It’s been six weeks since I last posted here. That can’t be good. And I have a ton of stuff to get out of my mind through my fingers. The one-day trivia brain of Los Angelenos; the US presidential election process; the insane bureaucracy and mind-control of this peculiar and remarkable country. Plus, lots of pics – some with world famous stars of the screen. And the tale of trying to get hold of my possessions after 16 weeks now.

Why is this material still in my brain and not on the page? Because of work. Too much work. Far too much work. This job is a constant invitation to burn-out. I think it is the three international meetings a year that is what really makes the workload impossible: there is never more than a week in which you can get on with all those things that need quiet periods to get done. I thank god that the cycle ride home (along the beach – it’s nice, even in crap weather) is 35 minutes. It’s the one conscious hour of the day I can’t be at my laptop. Although I did take two phonecalls on my way in this morning. How long before I’m balancing the Dell on my handlebars, trying to pick up WiFi signals from the beach houses?

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Can someone please get to the ebook reader before Apple

Amazon's KindleI’m quite excited about the fact that Amazon has brought out a new ebook reader that it calls the Kindle. I haven’t seen one in the real world but I am assuming with the effort they’ve put behind it that the screen technology is what it claims to be – easy to read without straining your eyes.

I believe ebooks are the inevitable future. It’s just another step along the digital revolution. But – and what a but – have you seen the state of the “Kindle”? It looks like a prototype. A prototype designed by 18-year-old students back in the 1980s. Here is good technology and big demand with crappy design – i.e. the perfect opportunity for Apple.

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Saturday night pub fight; Sunday morning huge change dawning

I am having a tough day today. A very painful goodbye at Oxford station, a long walk along the river, and now I am sat in my half-empty flat feeling hollow and a little lost.

My possessions are strewn about. They need to be divided into take-with, put in shipping container, and chucked away. I have nowhere to sit. My chairs are covered in boxes; the sofa’s is in pieces in a recycling skip; the bed I sold last night for £75 to a nice student who loaded it into a large people taxi and drove off. My Mazda was driven off the day before.

I keep feeling hungry but it’s only 11.50am and I know it’s not hunger but stomach knots as the depth of my move, my emigration sinks in. And I keep welling up. Occasionally one manages to break through and pulls with it a few drops down my face. They don’t have enough momentum to get past the cheek ridge so stop there and dry.

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The participative web – follow my Web2.0 ramblings at the OECD meeting

For those interested in Internet things – and in this case the sexy side of the Internet, Facebook and all that stuff – there is an interesting conference due to start in two hours in Ottawa, Canada.

I know because I’m here and I’m on of two official bloggers. See can see the full agenda here, and the front page to the blog, which I will be updating all day can be found here.

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Review of Sex.com by Kev Murphy

Kevin Murphy, a British IT journo based in the US, has done a review of my Sex.com book on his blog.

He likes it. Which is nice since he is one of roughly three journalists in the world who understand the domain name system and its history. You can read it all here.

I like the opening line: “This is easily the funnest tech industry book I’ve read in a long time.”

I’m still don’t know where things are at with the US publisher, or this bloke in New York was interested in making a screenplay out of the book, or if I’m ever going to make any money from the book. Still, what does it matter in the wider scheme of things? I managed to write a book and people seem to enjoy it.

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The New Seven Wonders of the World

About nine months ago, I wrote a post about there being an effort by UNESCO to decide a new set of Seven Wonders of the World. Well, the results are in.

And, by popular vote, they are:

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Amazon.com now selling my book

This has to be good – I note that Amazon.com is now selling my book – Sex.com.

Unfortunately there is still a four to six-week delivery date on it, which leads me to conclude that my publishers have yet to strike a deal with a US publisher. I also note on a quick perusal of the Net that the Sydney Morning Herald and ran a whole extract in its edition today – Chapter 3, I believe. And I’m pleased to see that Techworld – where I was news ed – ran an extract last week. Alot has happened since I’ve been away.

I’ve also got a lovely review on Amazon.com. Although this doesn’t appeared to have helped my ranking much – it’s still way down at book no 186,461. Anyway, the review:

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