Friday, September 16, 2005

Moving RSS Off the Desktop

RSS is a great technology. If you're a regular reader, you know about my love for the Google Toolbar. And Charlene Li agrees with me.

RSS is a great technology, but everything I'm seeing keeps it connected to a computer desktop. Charlie Wood is working on some interesting tools that take enterprise information and make it portable. I corresponded with him a bit via email and there seems to be plenty more coming down the pike in this direction. Great stuff, but these still use traditional "geek" tools, like computers and handheld devices like Blackberries.

Why do these things need to be tied to the desktop? At the Blog Business Summit I heard someone talk about a watch that would receive information to tell you if your meeting location had been moved. That's great!

I would love to see people developing things that take advantage of advancements like home wireless networks along with RSS. I envision devices like a digital picture frame that pulls information from a pictures folder, so I can update the picture frame in my parent's house by just adding or removing photos from something like Shutterfly. Or, imagine a wallet-sized frame that updates whenever it detects a network, so I can have pictures of my kids with me no matter where I am, and they're always updated. If I'm on a trip and they do something cute that my wife catches with our ubiquitious digital camera, I will see that the next time I take out my little "frame."

Another tool I'd love to see is a dial on my office wall that can easily be configured to show me how slow traffic is moving along my home commute.

The trick is to make such tools work with minimal configuration.

Hey, while we're at it, why not a clock that shows me where all my children are! Fit them with a GPS system (or a GPS cell phone), feed it through to my clock and whamo! It's one of those clocks that Ron's mom has in Harry Potter.

Though, I could do without the setting that says "mortal danger."

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