October 2011

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I need help debugging this.

word bugThe image on the left is a screenshot of Word 2011 bug effects that are standing in the path of a book am finishing. If you click on it you’ll go to a larger image with mouse-over notes explaining the problem, which I’ll detail here in slightly greater length.

While the Print view looks fine, and clicking on any text shows the correct style in the Styles toolbox, the Outline view has big problems. Lines of normal text, regardless of formatting, show up in the Outline view as Level 1. They also show up as Level 1 or 2 in the Document Map Pane sidebar, which is the pane on the left.

“The Comity of the Commons” is Heading 2. So is “Agency,” though it shows up as something between Level 2 and 3. The other items flush-left are all normal text that Word has elevated to Heading 1, even though they are not.

I use this pane to navigate around the book, which is close to 300 pages and over 80,000 words. Having so many illegitimate Heading 1′s and Heading 2′s makes navigating nearly impossible using the Document Map Pane sidebar.

I can very temporarily fix the problem by clicking on the line of text incorrectly seen by word as Heading 1 or 2, clearing the formatting, and re-formatting it if necessary. But that takes me about an hour each time this happens, and it’s a huge PITA. And then it goes back to this state anyway.

Word’s AutoRecovery works rarely, and when it does, the AutoRecovered file has the same problem. FWIW, I don’t use any fancy formatting, instead relying on Word’s own default Headings and other styles.

Bonus problem: If I view and save in Outline view, ALL TEXT gets turned into Level 1, and the document is hosed. I just have to go back to the last good copy.

I have wasted my time on the phone already with Microsoft support, which was useless.

I have invested some time with Craig Burton on the phone. He opened one of my screwed-up book drafts in his Windows version of Word 2011, and the doc was screwed up in exactly the same way.

So the docs (.docx) are being screwed up, somehow. It’s not a display issue. It’s embedded in the file itself. And unscrewing the problem doesn’t help, because the file screws up again anyway. The document doesn’t appear to be screwed in Print view; but in Outline view, and in the Document View Pane sidebar, it is screwed. So, as it’s going now, I’ll be turning in a document that can only be used in Print view.

Any clues or help you can provide would be greatly appreciated. And please don’t tell me not to use Word. I wish I didn’t have to; but it’s a requirement if I want to get this book finished and in.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give.

[Later...] Autoflowering, below, gave me an answer I tried before — saving the file as a .doc instead of a .docx — and seeing if that worked. It didn’t the first time, but it did this time, and has been working for more than a day now. I’m not convinced that the file isn’t still corrupted in some way, but it seems to work fine. So, thanks to everybody for your help.

So I’m writing about financialization. Kevin Phillips‘ prophetic book on the subject, Bad Money, is open on my desk. (He published it in early 2007, in advance of The Crash.) But it doesn’t contain the definitional quote that I need. So I turn to Wikipedia. There, in the Financialization entry, we are treated to this quote:

Financialization may be defined as: “the increasing dominance of the finance industry in the sum total of economic activity, of financial controllers in the management of corporations, of financial assets among total assets, of marketised securities and particularly equities among financial assets, of the stock market as a market for corporate control in determining corporate strategies, and of fluctuations in the stock market as a determinant of business cycles” (Dore 2002)

Nice, but there is no citation for Dore; just some “further reading”:

Dore, R (2000). Stock Market Capitalism: Welfare Capitalism: Japan and Germany vs. the Anglo-Saxons. Oxford: Oxford University PressISBN 0-19-924061-2.

So I go look that up, find it on Amazon, and look inside. I choose to search for “determinant,” a fairly rare word, and get five results. None are what’s quoted in Wikipedia. But, since Ronald Dore is a scholar, I figure he must have written that definition somewhere. But when I go to look, the results are a cascade of Wikipedia citations. Not the original Dore.

This drives me just as nuts as I get when I go to look up, say, a geographical feature and get pages of commercial businesses associated with the feature, but not the feature itself. Google Maps is one offender here. Look up “Comb Ridge”, and you get this: http://g.co/maps/syspr. (Here are my own many shots of Comb Ridge.) The difference in this case is that I can still find Comb Ridge, while the provenance of the original Dore quote remains a mystery to me.

And, since I want to finish my book today, I’m not going to fool around any more with it. I’ll find some other definition. Still, I need to gripe a bit. Sloppy citing is a curse that keeps on cursing. Or causing it, anyway.

CRM and IIW

It just occurred to me that everything being worked on at IIW is meaningful to CRM. I had been thinking that only the VRM stuff was meaningful, but I realize now that all the IIW stuff is, because — from a CRM perspective — it’s all about customer empowerment. And empowered customers are entities that CRM will welcome, sooner or later.

Here’s the list of IIW topics on the IIW home page:

  • Open Standards that have been born and developed at IIW – OpenID, OAuth, Activity Streams, Portable Contacts, Salmon Protocol, SCIM, UMA ….
  • The Federated Social Web
  • Vendor Relationship Management
  • Personal Data Services -  collection, storage and value generation
  • Anonymity Pseudonymity and Reputation Online (think google+ controversy)
  • Legal Innovation including, Information Sharing Agreements, Data Ownership Agreements and the development of “trust” frameworks.
  • NSTIC – the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (it uses the term “user-centric identity” 4 times & “citizen-centric identity” once)
  • Cloud Identity and the intersection of enterprise ID and people (consumer) ID

With this in mind we (a bunch of VRM and IIW people) decided that Wednesday afternoon is when we’ll have the VRM+CRM session, although we can have CRM sessions anytime, because the whole workshop is an unconference and participants choose the topics. But if you’re into the future of CRM, that afternoon session will be a good one to hit.

There is also the whole next day, currently thus described:

Thursday is Yukon Day: One of the longtime themes of IIW is how identity and personal data intersect.  Many important discussions about Vendor Relationship Management (VRM) have also taken place at IIW.  In recognition of how personal data and identity are intertwined, the third day of the IIW, will be designated “IIW + Yukon” and will stress the emerging personal data economy.  The primary theme will be personal data control and leverage, where the individual controls and drives the use of their own data, and data about them held by other parties.

This isn’t social. It’s personal.  This day you can expext open-space style discuss ions of personal data stores (PDS), PDS ecosystems, and VRM.  One purpose of Yukon is to start to focus on business models and value propositions, so we will specifically be reaching out to angels and VC’s who are interested in personal data economy plays and inviting them to attend.

Yukon” is a play on “You Control.”

So, if CRM is your thing, IIW would be a good place to see what’s coming in CRM’s direction.

Look forward to seeing some of ya’ll there.

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I was in the midst of late edits on The Intention Economy this afternoon, wondering if I should refer to Steve Jobs in the past tense. I didn’t want to, but I knew he’d be gone by the time the book comes out next April, if he wasn’t gone already. So I decided to make the changes, and stopped cold before the first one. I just couldn’t go there.

Then the bad news came a few minutes ago, through an AP notification on my iPhone. Tonight we all have to go there.

Thirteen years, one month and one day ago, I wrote an email to Dave Winer, in response to a DaveNet post on Steve’s decision to kill off Apple’s clones. (Dave had also posted notes from an interview with Steve himself.) Dave published the email. Here’s the part that matters:

So Steve Jobs just shot the cloners in the head, indirectly doing the same to the growing percentage of Mac users who prefered cloned Mac systems to Apple’s own. So his message to everybody was no different than it was at Day One: all I want from the rest of you is your money and your appreciation for my Art.

It was a nasty move, but bless his ass: Steve’s art has always been first class, and priced accordingly. There was nothing ordinary about it. The Mac “ecosystem” Steve talks about is one that rises from that Art, not from market demand or other more obvious forces. And that art has no more to do with developers, customers and users than Van Gogh’s has to do with Sotheby’s, Christie’s and art collectors.

See, Steve is an elitist and an innovator, and damn good at both. His greatest achievements are novel works of beauty and style. The Apple I and II were Works of Woz; but Lisa, Macintosh, NeXT and Pixar were all Works of Jobs. Regardless of their market impact (which in the cases of Lisa and NeXT were disappointing), all four were remarkable artistic achievements. They were also inventions intended to mother necessity — and reasonably so. That’s how all radical innovations work. (Less forward marketers, including Bill Gates, wait for necessity to mother invention, and the best of those invent and implement beautifully, even though that beauty is rarely appreciated.)

To Steve, clones are the drag of the ordinary on the innovative. All that crap about cloners not sharing the cost of R&D is just rationalization. Steve puts enormous value on the engines of innovation. Killing off the cloners just eliminates a drag on his own R&D, as well as a way to reposition Apple as something closer to what he would have made the company if he had been in charge through the intervening years.

The simple fact is that Apple always was Steve’s company, even when he wasn’t there. The force that allowed Apple to survive more than a decade of bad leadership, cluelessness and constant mistakes was the legacy of Steve’s original Art. That legacy was not just an OS that was 10 years ahead of the rest of the world, but a Cause that induced a righteousness of purpose centered around a will to innovate — to perpetuate the original artistic achievements. And in Steve’s absence Apple did some righeous innovation too. Eventually, though, the flywheels lost mass and the engine wore out.

In the end, by when too many of the innovative spirts first animated by Steve had moved on to WebTV and Microsoft, all that remained was that righteousness, and Apple looked and worked like what it was: a church wracked by petty politics and a pointless yet deeply felt spirituality.

Now Steve is back, and gradually renovating his old company. He’ll do it his way, and it will once again express his Art.

These things I can guarantee about whatever Apple makes from this point forward:

  1. It will be original.
  2. It will be innovative.
  3. It will be exclusive.
  4. It will be expensive.
  5. It’s aesthetics will be impeccable.
  6. The influence of developers, even influential developers like you, will be minimal. The influence of customers and users will be held in even higher contempt.
  7. The influence of fellow business artisans such as Larry Ellison (and even Larry’s nemesis, Bill Gates) will be significant, though secondary at best to Steve’s own muse.

Turns out Steve’s muse was the best in the history of business. No one-hit wonders. We’re talking about world-changing stuff. Again and again and again.

Watch this clip from Robert X. Cringeley’s “Triumph of the Nerds” public TV special, filmed back when Steve was still running NeXT. This one too. Then look at what Steve did after coming back. Not just the iPod, iPhone, iPad, Pixar and the laptops we see with glowing apples all over the place. Look at the Apple Stores. I’ve been told that Apple Stores are top-grossing retail shops in every mall they occupy. Even if that’s not true, it’s believable.

I’ve also been told that Apple Stores were Steve’s idea. I don’t know if that’s true either, but it makes sense, because they succeeded where nearly every other attempt at the same thing failed. To get there, Steve and Apple had to look past the smoking corpses of Gateway, Circuit City, Computerland, Radio Shack and all the other computer stores that had failed, and do something very different and much better. And they did.

I was wrong about one thing in my list above. I don’t think Steve regarded customers and users with contempt, except in the sense that he believed he knew better than they did. As an elitist, he also knew that calling the smartest and most employable Apple users “geniuses” was great bait for employment serving customers at Apple Stores.

There is no shortage of quotes by and about Steve Jobs tonight. But the best quote is the one he uttered so long ago I can’t find a source for it (maybe one of ya’ll can): The journey is the reward.

His first hit, the Apple II, was “The computer for the rest of us.” So now is his legacy.

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I just ran across some research I did in December 2008, while working on the 10th Anniversary edition of The Cluetrain Manifesto:

  • Google Book Search results for cluetrain — 666[1]
  • Google Book Search results for markets are conversations — 2610
  • Google Web Search results for cluetrain — 394,000
  • Results for Web searches for markets are conversations — 626,000

[1] Increasing at more than one per day. The numbers were 647 on November 15, 2008 and 666 on December 1, 2008. Results passed 600 on September 30, 2008.

Here are the results today:

I added two more, with quotes, because I’m not sure if I used quotes the first time or not, for that phrase. I would like to have the exact URLs for the earlier searches too, but I don’t. To get useful, non-crufty URLs this time, I needed to fire up a virgin browser and scrape out everything not tied to the search itself (e.g. the browser name, prior searches, other context-related jive irrelevant to this post).

Of course, Google guesses about most of this stuff. (Though possibly not for the first item: a word in a book). Not sure how much any of it matters. I just thought it was interesting to share before I wander off and forget where I found these few bits of sort-of-historical data.

Bonus link (found via a Twitter search for #cluetrain): Jonathan Levi‘s The Cluetrain Manifesto — Manifested Today.