October 29th, 2013 Benjamin Horst
My team and I recently launched a new web project by the name of Recourser. It’s a web directory of online courses and MOOCs, to help people find courses and even careers that fit their interests.
We’re building something that we think will be fun and useful for many people and we’re quite excited about it.
The site is new (and very beta) and will have some bugs and missing pieces but we’d love to share it and hear folks’ input. Please take a look around and let us know what you think and where we can improve. All of your ideas and feedback are welcome!
January 24th, 2010 Benjamin Horst
Wishler is our new social wishlist sharing service. Using a bookmarklet, Wishler users can add items from any online store to their wishlists, and share them with friends. Our current site is a beta and we plan to continue adding features and improving the interface with community feedback, so please let me know what you think of the site: www.wishler.com
November 22nd, 2009 Benjamin Horst
My team recently created a demonstration site to promote Six Apart’s new Motion platform and provide a space for OpenOffice.org community members and fans to share with each other at Share OpenOffice.org.
The site is ideal to quickly post questions, links, and images and to embed videos and spark conversations within the community.
Still to come is custom design work and an ongoing promotional campaign to introduce the site to the broader community of OpenOffice.org and open source fans.
June 26th, 2008 Benjamin Horst
Quick note: I’ll be getting married on Saturday, and will be traveling to Istanbul and the Turkish coast for the following 12 days.
I may get the chance to post here, or perhaps not, but I should be back in New York City on July 12. See you then!
March 6th, 2008 Benjamin Horst
My friend and former intern Matt Leung hosts a weekly radio show on Vassar’s WVKR radio station called “The Technology Beat.”
He interviewed me recently to discuss open source software for musicians and students, and we discussed applications including OpenOffice.org, Firefox, Miro, Jokosher and others. (See the site above to listen online, or download an MP3 of the interview here.)
Matt’s show has focused on open source software and Creative Commons licensing for creating and sharing music. I’m the first interviewee who is not a musician, so check out some of the other shows to hear a lot of great songs from smart bands, including my friends Dave Michalak and Jay Olin’s band “Toxic Waste.”
January 18th, 2008 Benjamin Horst
Today at the Googleplex in Silicon Valley is the largest day of presentations and meetings for the KDE 4.0 Release Party.
We flew in from New York to participate in the conference sessions, invited to help cement the collaboration efforts between many projects around the ODF standard. (Used by OpenOffice and KOffice, among many others, ODF provides a shared meeting ground for many open source communities, as well as corporate entities.)
Aaron Seigo’s presentation gave us an overview of the new additions to KDE. One of the features that I was most interested in learning about is the cross-platform capability of KDE 4.0 applications. With 4.0, Mac and Windows users will be able to run KDE applications natively on their platforms. Demos of Marble, KStar and a few other apps really impressed me–and I’m very much looking forward to using KOffice on my MacBook in the near future.
Memory footprint is also much more efficient in KDE 4.0. The Eee PC, with 512 MB of RAM and a 1 Ghz processor, can run KDE 4.0 with all the visual extras turned on. Aaron said many applications will run with 30-40% less RAM using KDE 4 than they did with KDE 3.
KDE 4.0 is targeted primarily at early adopters, distributions, testers and developers. KDE 4.1, scheduled for the middle of this year, will focus on end users and is clearly going to be a watershed in the global move to open source.
September 20th, 2007 Benjamin Horst
Louis Suarez-Potts and Hu Caiyong started the first day of the OpenOffice.org Conference (Wednesday) with two consecutive keynote presentations.
Louis spoke about the future of OOo in “OpenOffice.org 3.0 and Beyond” (3.0 is scheduled for release in mid-2008 and will include a large batch of new features, including the long-awaited PIM users have been demanding).
Hu Xiansheng discussed the role his company (RedFlag 2000) has taken within the OpenOffice.org ecosystem. They have developed RedOffice, an OOo-derivative with user interface and document format specifically tailored to the Chinese market. (Consisting of 80 million current users, and projected to grow by 20 million per year for the next half-decade.)
These talks and the rest of the conference are being videoed and will be available on the Kiberpipa OpenOffice.org Conference website as soon as they are ready.
My own presentation, “Case Study: OpenOffice.org Guerrilla Advertising in the New York Metro Newspaper,” took place at 4:30 local time in the amazing “Paranimf” room. About 25 attendees joined me, and came up with some interesting follow-up questions at the end. (Download my slides in ODF here.)
I’m also blogging the conference for CenterNetworks. My first post discussed the opening Native Language Confederation party on Tuesday night.
January 23rd, 2007 Benjamin Horst
Wikis have been one of my key interests for more than four years now, because they bring a new level of interactivity to websites and web-based communities.
My own hands-on project in the world of wikis is Wikipages, a wiki-based local business directory that currently focuses on New York City.
Over the past year, Wikipages traffic has grown steadily as it has been linked to by bloggers and bookmarking sites. Its listings have grown to include hundreds of businesses in the city, with a preponderance of restaurants and bars, but also realtors, chiropractors, photo labs, and even the occasional copy shop. But we’re also happy to list parks and museums and to include neighborhoods and special districts like Stone Street, at the heart of downtown Manhattan.
Wikipages should grow very quickly in 2007, and more contributors are always welcome!
July 31st, 2006 Benjamin Horst
The OpenOffice.org Metro ad is running today in New York City. I saw many people holding Metro papers on the subway, and the ad is clearly visible on the back page! It looks really good.
You can download a PDF. (Click on July 31 in the calendar, then press the “Get Your Metro” button, and it’ll download for you.)
July 26th, 2006 Benjamin Horst
This past weekend saw the successful conclusion of the fundraising campaign, and the date for the OpenOffice.org Metro Ad is set for Monday, July 31.
Many thanks to John Kakoulides, who designed the ad (which looks great), as well as to all the donors and others who helped promote the effort.
Next step: to get other media interested in the process so that a ripple effect develops around the initial ad placement…