Twes we can

August 30, 2009 | 2 comments

Oxford Twestival is a night of musical entertainment, comedy and more in aid of Oxfam’s water sanitation project in Mali. We’ve got some great musicians lined up, there will be prizes on the night and the venue is pretty cool – anyone remember the old Point, above the Cape of Good Hope? That’s where we’re holding the event.

Here’s the details you’ll need to remember, complete with handy link to get a discount on your ticket if you buy in advance:

Oxford Twestival: September 13, 2009
The Cape of Good Hope (upstairs)

£5 in advance / £8 on the door

Okay, Twitter skeptics, so it’s got a kind of annoying name, but you don’t need to be a member of Twitter to attend, and the crowd promises to be a great mix of local artistic talent and professionals from around the area.

Every penny goes towards that Oxfam project, so not only will it be lots of fun, but you’ll also project the warm, fuzzy glow of someone who knows they’ve helped make a real difference in someone’s life.

There’s been a bit of bad publicity surrounding Twestival’s San Francisco incarnation, who kind of screwed around the DNA Lounge. Each Twestival is organized independently, and those shenanigans, while irresponsible, were unique; here’s the main Twestival response. I’m pleased to say that the Oxford Twestival’s organization has been very responsibly managed by Sylwia Presley.

Twitter DoS and single points of failure

August 6, 2009 | 9 comments

Twitter went down today at the hand of a denial of service attack (alongside Facebook and Livejournal; the latter has also reported an attack). In the old days, you’d shrug it off and go and look at something else. Today, Twitter is such an integral part of the landscape, and some people’s businesses, that it made BBC News and was commented on all over the Internet.

The headlines are highly strung to say the least:

The stress of it all made TechCrunch come over all Mr Humphries:

Meanwhile, away from the hilarity, Dave Winer’s developing rssCloud and people are beginning to talk about Laconi.ca. The only model that makes sense is a distributed one: it’s a fundamentally harder problem to bring down a decentralized network, because there isn’t a single point of failure. So far, for example, DNS has remained pretty robust. As regular readers will know, I strongly believe there are very solid business and development reasons for going decentralized, too.

The web is becoming social, and those conversations are becoming more and more important. A malicious user or group shouldn’t be able to take down our conversation platform – or have the ability to dictate its direction. It’s time to think about a better way to build the social web.