TEDxManitoba 2012 Technical Report

I’ve been quite busy over the past few weeks wrangling all the technical aspects of TEDxManitoba 2012, which took place this past February 9th. Being a part of the steering committee for the event was an incredible experience, as was working with my crew in my position as technical lead. I was also fortunate to make a number of new connections and friends through the experience — as well as, of course, hearing some fantastic ideas worth spreading. After the event went so well, I wanted to write up a quick overview of how we pulled off the day’s technical aspects so I could give credit where credit is due. (Lost? Read up on TEDx Events.)

Apple is Bigger than Jesus… or the Beatles.

It’s being noticed that Apple’s (AAPL) market cap has shot up to the stratosphere, and suggested by some that it’s Only A Matter Of Time Until Apple’s Market Cap Is Bigger Than Microsoft I say don’t hold your breath for it to get — or stay — there. Paul Kedrosky wrote yesterday about Apple, Wal-mart, and the “Market Capitalization Bigger Than” Thing, concluding “When we press our noses against the market glass and ‘oooh’ and ‘aaah’ at a company’s market capitalization exceeding something it shouldn’t … let’s just say bad things tend to happen. Eventually.”

I agree — just take a look at the context he gives it. Do you really think that Apple is worth over $200 Billion today?

Thinking Differently about the Virtual/Natural World Intersection (TED Talk by Pranav Mistry)

As good as most of them are it’s a rare TED video that makes you want to stand and applaud with the crowd even though you’re only streaming a recording of a past event. But this TED Talk by Pranav Mistry has some truly jaw-dropping stuff, particularly for those who haven’t much considered the extent to which we could be interfacing our digital world our the natural one. Some of this looks like genuine science fiction. Haven’t heard of him? I hadn’t either. “Pranav Mistry is a PhD student in the Fluid Interfaces Group at MIT’s Media Lab. Before his studies at MIT, he worked with Microsoft as a UX researcher; he’s a graduate of IIT. Mistry is passionate about integrating the digital informational experience with our real-world interactions.” He is also the inventor of SixthSense.

AT&T dumps celebrity hacker: Can't secure his account

Kevin Mitnick kevin-mitnick-card has been dumped by his web host and cell carrier because they can’t keep crackers and script kiddies out. Their solution — rather than dealing with the security implications — is to dump the customer. Mitnick is a $20,000-a-year for AT&T because of his roaming charges, and could help them find a solution. But no… evidently it’s best to just ditch the customer. Maybe they didn’t realize we could all do the math… your AT&T data is no more safer than his.

Think Differently: Electrical Outlets

My friend John La Grou johnlagrou of Millennia Media and SafePlug is an inventor and an entrepreneur, to name just two of the bullets on his resumé. As readers here will know, I’m big on thinking differently — not an easy trick, but one which gives you the fresh perspective to break out of assumed molds. It’s a skill that is necessary both to inventors and to entrepreneurs. At the most recent TED conference, John gave a very brief TED Talk on one of the inventions he’s worked on, a new kind of “smart” power outlet that reduces the risk of fire considerably more than GFI plugs and standard circuit breakers could hope to do. It’s an idea he and some friends arrived at by thinking differently.

Preparing for a Linux Desktop Migration: Practical Advice

Linux Mascot:  Tux I recently commented on a discussion about a planned migration to Linux in order to avoid having to deal with Windows Vista. It seems that it takes more searching than one should expect if one is attempting to find positive reviews. Some companies are electing to not to make the switch at all, waiting instead to see what the next version will bring.  Vista is easily the biggest flop in the product line since Windows Me. When I purchased a new HP laptop last year, I received a coupon for an upgrade from Windows XP to Vista (the unit shipped with XP), I didn’t bother to redeem it. My laptop is running Mandriva, and though it still dual-boots to XP, I haven’t used the option in more than a year now. The recent discussion got me thinking about my own migration from Windows 2000 to Linux, and what advice I might offer.