Dec 31, 2010

Most popular and my favorite blog post from me in year 2010

Year is over and like everyone else, I'll do a short recap on my blogging. I got in to blogging this year and it's been lot of fun. It's been nice to see that there has been also increasing number of people coming to read my posts.

Here's recap which posts people have liked and which I like the most.

Quoted content
 Amazing stuff with using existing images in social 
By far most popular post in my blog.

The machine is changing us: YouTube and the politics of authenticity  
Personal favorite, this video really affected what I think about me (I mean anyone as themselves) in web when they write or communicate in anyways. If you haven't seen go and watch: 

My own content
Personal cloud services
Second most popular post of my blog.

Day my dad joined Facebook
Personal favorite, it was on that time shocking. Now I've got used to situation, but I have to admit I haven't really noticed my dad there. Maybe I got over it, but it was funny to read what I thought on that time.

Short book reviews of mine:
Who moved my cheese 
Most popular of these book reviews.

What Would Google Do
Personal favorite, not because what I wrote about it, but how refreshingly good the book itself was. I had expectations towards it, but it exceeded those by a mile.

Have a good new year!

Written by +Henri Hämäläinen

Dec 28, 2010

Wordle of my blog from 2010

Wordle with all the text I've blogged this year. I just realized I really need to start using less the words Really and Just.

Do you own in wordle. Share it using #wordle2010. Let's make visual recap to year of blogging.

Looking back - inspiring blogs and sites this year

Year is ending and I decided to join the club and make short recaps on my web life. This was the year I really realised how much great content and interesting people there are to enrich my life.

I'll start these recaps with listing couple of blogs I have enjoyed following this year:

It's inspiring to see new innovations everywhere around the world day after day. In some weird way it makes me happy that there are always room for good small innovations. It doesn't require a corporation to build something new and interesting.

Seth's blog
Being as popular as he is, he still keeps making surprisingly good observations about the world we live in. Quality of posts no one else have been able to achieve.

Stuff no one told me
Beautiful and inspiring cartoons from Alex Noriega.

Hawaiians do no blog
Amazingly stupid nonsense with twisted sense of humor. Best medicine to not to think yourself too much of an adult yet.

Ted talks
It's not exactly a blog, but there's so much great content I've enjoyed during the year that it had to make to the list.

There's many more I've followed and many of those have produced some brilliant posts. These are just the ones that have almost always made me feel more inspired or happy. That's the reason I think those are most relevant to me.
Written by +Henri Hämäläinen

Dec 25, 2010

Amazing stuff with using existing images in social

This is stuff that if someone would present this with decks it would look wow, but you wouldn't really believe that it can work. This is just amazing what these guys have done with images. Beginning part of the video is nice and it has some great ideas for webpapers in tablets for example.

But what made me really post this was the latter part. What had been done with existing flickr images was just beautiful. Soon you can really web travel to all popular location in the world and see all the details from your home already.

I really recommend to watch this Ted Talk:

And you can also try photosynth directly in here (requires silverlight):

It's just so nice to see what all social media, people sharing their photos and videos and all amazing technology will bring us in the future.

Written by +Henri Hämäläinen

Dec 18, 2010

Amazing app - translates text on the fly with phone camera

It's been a long time I've been totally amazed on some SW. I do follow lot that what's happening on application development aroung the world, but this totally blew me off, Check this out. It translates language on the fly with phone camera. It's the first time I've really thought that these augmented reality apps make lot of sense. It would be so cool to try this out.

App is from Word Lens from QuestVisual. Check the video out:

It's just so cool. And what shocks the most, it is really usefull.

Dec 15, 2010

Make a difference and give a loan -

Do you have any money on your bank account? Do you really need all of it during next year or so. If not, be a sport and lend it to people who really need it and want to help themselves and their families.

Go to and decide the people or group you want to loan some money and then give it a go. As small amount as 25 dollard you can make a difference.

Really think, these people really are wanting to make a difference to their live and living standards. They are not asking for charity. These are the people we in western countries can easily help.

And if you really carefully think, I'm sure you can think something you don't need right now, but can postpone bit later.

I just last week took my first step and now I'm challenging you to join me.

Kiva - Loans that change lives

P.S. I'm aware of critisism has got in the past, One story here and some more in here. They have acted on these and I at least still feel good when I can help the ones that want to help themselves, even those are  sold to me with colourfull stories

Written by +Henri Hämäläinen

Dec 9, 2010

Brilliant marketing and nice real life game in Stockholm with Mini

What a brilliant marketing from Mini. And also it seems like a quite interesting game. Maybe there could be some middle point prices or ways to disappear for some minutes to keep the interest for whole week. Or then I could have been wrong and people really played the whole week, not only first and last days.

It's always fun to see innovation like this in games and marketing. Check it out:

MINI Getaway Stockholm 2010.

Dec 8, 2010

Team dynamics - Can group of specialists be a good team?

Yesterday in Agile gathering we discussed about how teams work and how to get teams work more like a team. There was lot of talk about specialists and generalists and how to spread the information of specialists to other team members to make team more successful.

Afterwards I started to think sports. All sports, for example soccer, american football, basketball, you name it are full of specialists. Best teams have most suitable specialists working together to make even more value out of each other as a team. Team member knows each others strengths and use those to beat the opponents.

 Sport teams are bit different than the work ones. There's always games and opponents where teams are weighted. Most of the time is spent practicing. Teams have team practices and individuals practice their specialties. Also there's a playbook to follow. It gives guidelines for problems that arrive rapidly in the field to make decisions which the whole team knows about. Still there's always room for excellent individuals to make their own decisions to make a difference.

Does teams work best if everyone is equal and generalist? Maybe not. Some people are always better than others in some tasks. They should be allowed to come even better on their area to make the whole team better. Main task for line manager or scrum master or whomever is watching the team is to make sure that there's a possibility to learn. Everyone should have the possibility to learn from the more experienced ones. There will always be situations when these less experienced ones need to take the responsibility and tackle the situation.

I see playbooks as an interesting idea. Maybe teams in work life could also have a playbook. That would give guidance to tackle most commonly faced problems. It would give guidelines how to start looking for solutions, but it still would leave room for individuals to make their own decisions. These could be used in discussion, retrospectives and learning's. Maybe those can't be taken directly from sports, but the idea feels interesting to me.

Self directing teams are often said to be the most successful ones. Still in sports there no fully self directing teams. In some sports, like soccer and basketball, teams are more on the self directing side when they are on the field. Then in some others like american football, there's more guidance from the coaches all the time. Maybe this self directing thing is more of a motivational issue than performance issue. Worth to keep in mind still.

I know sports is not the same as work life. There's so many differences. Maybe still, there's something to learn in work life also.  

Written by +Henri Hämäläinen

Dec 3, 2010

My thoughts on One subject blogs becoming boring revisited

From the moment I blogged about one subject blogs becoming boring soon, I felt that something in my thinking isn't really right. There's TV series and books made on top of very narrow subject. So maybe the reason for blog becoming boring is not about the subject.

If I think myself back for couple of weeks, even a month, I just kept running back to similar post on similar subject about Agile. This got me in to impression that problems is the subject. That it isn't evolving in the speed blogging about it is.

Soon after my post, I run into two agile posts that got me convinced that it's just about taking new view points and connecting existing knowledge on a way that haven't been arranged before to make good posts. So it's still about the content and presentation skills. Not about the subject. Those two great posts by the way, where one form my colleague Vasco Duarte about Patterns of Agility and second was from Jurgen Appelo about there is no single truth about Agile and Lean.

How stupid I was. I've always hated people who jumps directly to conclusions and are not really analysing any reasons, and now it was me who did so. Obviously subject isn't the reason. It's like if you give 20 photographers a mug and table and ask them to shoot some amazing photos. You can get few really amazing from surprising angle and set and then the rest looks almost the same.

Maybe the main reason for my original post was to convince myself that I can post anything on this blog and people will continue to read it. Maybe I need to revisit on my thoughts on that one too.

I take myself credit of at least realizing my faulty thinking.

Dec 2, 2010

Book I read - What Would Google Do

I've been a fan of Google for long time already. Maybe that's why I expected book What Would Google Do to tell stories about Google. I was totally blown away how much more there actually is in this book than just Google. Actually this book isn't really about Google, but the way they think and how that thinking have changed the world already and will change for the future also.

I've never had so many ideas bursting to mind than reading this one. In every chapter in some point there came this realization, "hey this is how it could be done" or "OK, that's a brilliant way to look on this problem". Book covers so many different industries giving examples and ideas how this Googlethinking or Googlejuice as Jeff Jarvis puts it, that it makes it really interesting book for many.

Openness and trust are the key themes in this one. This book got me again one step towards being more open and direct. Jeff convinced me that there's much more benefits of being open than what are the risks of it. Of course you need to be aware of your privacy, share the things you want to. And I'm at least thinking that openness is your personal right, I'm not entitled to share too much data on my kids or my friends, but I'll let them decide themselves.

I have to say, that I didn't have a dull moment reading this one. Almost every book have this section which could be made shorter or more interesting, but with this one, nothing comes to my mind.

I really want to recommend this book to everyone who wants to understand how openness have changed and will continue to change the world we live in and how companies and organizations operate.

I'm sure this is one of the books I'll get back to over and over again. I at least enjoyed this one a lot and hope you would enjoy it too.

Next in line I have Dan Pink's Drive which I've waited to read for a long time. I'm excited to start that one.

Written by +Henri Hämäläinen