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Monday, October 15, 2007

Moving forward

It's been, again, quite a lot time since my last post, but this time I have a pretty good excuse: most of this time I've been working on setting up my new web site:, and it is finally alive and kicking....

And, now that I have my own house, it's time to move all my content, spread over different web sites, there. So this is going to be my last post on blogger; from now own, you can follow my posts in my blog People, places, technology, and such....

I hope to see you there!!!

Friday, August 31, 2007

It's that time of the year again

Yes, summer vacation is slowly dragging to an end (at least in the part of the northern hemisphere where I've spent most of my time lately). It is time to start thinking on what to do with these few months left until the end of the year, new projects to start this fall,....

And today it's also BlogDay. This year, O should have prepared this a little bit more, but I have not. Preparing your blog list for BlogDay is like preparing your the gift list for Xmas time, you always want to do it in advance, with lots of time to carefully think about what you put in the list, but at the end you end up doing it in a rush in the last minute....

Anyway, this is my list of five blogs for this year:
  • Pasta and Vinegar: I don't know where the name of this blog comes from, but it is a very interesting blog about design and technology and its interaction with space and society. It is in the line of Jan Chipchase's Future Perfect (which I cannot list it today because I already did last year...)
  • Barcelona Photobloggers: BlogDay is about blogs you have discovered lately. Well, since I came back to Barcelona, I' ve started to get more involved in photoblogging, and I've discovered quite a lot of good local photobloggers. Since I cannot list all of them, I link to the blogger's blog. It is in Spanish, and it includes lots of local interest information, such as photo exhibitions and competitions, but even if you don't speak much Spanish, take some time to look at the photoblog links to see some of the stuff that local photobloggers are doing....
    (Barcelona Photobloggers is, also, the organization through which, if everything works OK, I'm going to have one of my photos exhibited in a museum. Even if it is only for a few days and as part of a visual projection, it's a way to start...)
  • Space and culture: another interesting blog that touches the topic of the interaction between space, culture. society and technology
  • Streetpulse: as you can see from some of my latest posts and how this list is evolving, I'm getting more and more interested on urban spaces and street photography. This blog kind of combines both interests.
  • Metroblogging in Rio: There's no Barcelona Metroblog yet (I'm registered to start writing as soon as there are four more bloggers from BCN, but it seems that there is not much interest in metroblogging from Barcelona...), and I think that last year I already listed Bangalore's, so for the time being, lets read the blog from one of the coolest cities on earth....
An this is it for this year.

Happy BlogDay to everybody

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Love is in the ....

Saying that in Paris, love is in the air sounds like a big and banal cliche. What I guess is not so normal to hear, but it is true, is that in Paris, love (l´amour) is in the ground...

Seen on a street (I literally mean on a street) in the Quartier Latin

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

(More) space invaders

First seen in the streets of London, then in Paris, where next?

Update on august 30: I found in the Internet the map of cities that have been/are being invaded...

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Color coding

Using color is a typical way to differentiate between slightly different usages of otherwise similar artifacts. Be it garbage recycling containers in Barcelona...

Recycling colors
... or mailboxes in Bangalore...

Mail colors, Ulsoor, Bangalore
As widespread as it is the use of color coding, it remains quite a local thing in many occasions. The meaning and associations attributed to different colors varies a lot in different cultures and societies, so color codes are constantly being invented to be used in specific situations and locations. Some of them may evolve to be fully global, maybe trough a formal standardization process, but in lot of cases they remain local, or are reinterpreted (translated) when moved to different situations and cultural environments....

A small test: what different type of garbage do you think you should throw in each container?, what type of letters would you put in each mailbox? (try to answer the question without reading the small print in the photographs...)

Monday, July 30, 2007

Writing about India

I've been back to Bangalore for a couple of weeks on a business trip.

I usually get quite a lot of questions about India when I get back from these trips. India is second only to China on attracting attention of business people and the public in general; but usually, the knowledge about the country and its economical, political, and social conditions is heavily mediated by the media news.

A couple of weeks ago, I read a blog entry from India about how western media usually approach the economic and social evolution of India in the last years, linked to the growth in IT and IT enabled services, and the stereotypes and cliches that are common in this type of analysis.

The authors description of a typical article about India seems to apply only to the English business oriented media. In Spain, in the last month and a half, there have been only two news bits about India in El PaĆ­s (my preferred local newspaper, and, discounting its political prefernces, a quite reliable source of information). One of them was quite a lengthly article about sati, the ancient practice of widow inmolation in the husband's funeral pyre. The article headline talked about the survival of this practice in today's India, and only when you got into the fine print you read that two cases have happened in the last couple of years and, in total, since independence in 1947, about 40 cases have been registered (remember that we are talking about a country with a population of more than 1 billion). The other was a short clip about the election of a woman as the country president, the first one to occupy the highest (but with very little real power) political position since the country independence in 1947.

The common thread of the stereotypical article about Indian economic growth and the Spanish generalist media coverage about India is the focus on what makes the country different, while downplaying any development that may approach it somehow, even if it is just a little bit, to the concept of developed countries.

However, those development and changes exist, and even if they are small steps, the huge size of the Indian population male them very relevant. For example, in terms of technology evolution, the widespread diffusion of mobile phones usage has open lots of possibilities for new applications and use models that very few companies seem to be tapping in (the major exception I know about is the work that Nokia is doing to understand mobile phone usage in developing countries and that Jan Chipchase captures in his blog).

A few years ago, C. K. Prahalad popularized the concept of The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid. Maybe we should also start talking about the Future Innovations at the bottom of the pyramid...

Back to blogging

It's been more than a month since my last post, and it has been a busy month!!: business meetings, travel, even some minor renovation in my apartment..., have kept me away from the blog. I've been a little bit more active on my photoblog, but I guess that is easier to grab some old photos, write a title and post them than writing a blog entry that makes some sense (as if my other blog posts made some sense...)

Anyway, enough excuses and lets get back to blogging....