Twitter’s So-Bad-It’s-Good Recruiting Video

At Twitter, The Future is You! is a funny recruiting video. It reminds me of Microsoft’s internal training videos.

This article also appears in The Adventures of Accordion Guy in the 21st Century.


One of Toronto’s Top Tweeters

joey devilla twitter page

I’m honoured and flattered to be among those listed in Saturday’s Globe and Mail article, T.O. Twitter Smackdown, as one of Toronto’s best tweeters. Thanks to author Lisan Jutras and the Globe for considering my Twitter account worthy!

Here’s how I got written up:

Name: Joey deVilla
Handle: AccordionGuy
No. of followers: 5,420
Natural habitat: Patios, karaoke bars
Topic: The funny

A self-described bon vivant, this developer is like the guy at the party everyone wants to talk to. He spreads joy in the form of amusing links (from a Bacon Space Kitty screensaver to an erotic falconry website) and funny updates. But don’t let his sunny disposition fool you: the man has clout. He’s got mad followers, and shows up at everything from Bombay Sapphire’s penthouse barbecue to Mesh U, Canada’s web conference. He’s also a rock ’n’ roll accordionist who left the Philippines during Marcos’s reign. Respect.

Sample tweet: We should let that World Cup octopus pick the method to stop the BP oil leak.

Also listed in the article:

Once again, my thanks to Lisan Jutras and the Globe!

This article also appears in The Adventures of Accordion Guy in the 21st Century.


Scott “UnMarketing” Stratten: “First Name and Email are Enough” and Other Thoughts on Online Interaction

Last night at a gathering of Toronto digital marketing and social media types held by TheBizMedia – I’m not sure I qualified for an invite, but hey, free beer!Scott Stratten, president of UnMarketing, gave a very entertaining, funny and insightful presentation in which he talked about the lessons he learned as an online marketer.

I shot a five-minute video snippet of his presentation, where he talked about:

  • First name and email address are often enough. When you need users to sign up for things like contests or surveys, do you really need to take up their valuable time by collecting information that you probably don’t need? (I know that at Microsoft, we ask for great gobs of information when you sign up for even the simplest of things. I do try to get them to tone it down.)
  • How to get people to take your surveys. Telling them that “your answers will help us” isn’t going to get them to take your surveys. Scott found that what works for him is offering a chance at a prize – even a $50 Amazon certificate – boosts the number of people who take survey by orders of magnitude.
  • Auto-DM replies on Twitter. Don’t. Just don’t.

You’ll probably want to turn up the volume on the video. Scott was speaking without a microphone, and as good a videocamera as the Flip Mino HD is, I would’ve had to get obnoxiously close to the stage to get better sound.

This article also appears in Canadian Developer Connection.


“I’m With @Stupid” T-Shirt

Here’s what happens when the 1970’s “I’m with Stupid” t-shirt gets a 21st century Twitter upgrade:

Grey t-shirt featuring a pointing finger with a Twitter bird on it: "I'm with @Stupid"

This article also appears in The Adventures of Accordion Guy in the 21st Century.


The Twitter Developers’ Checklist

Truth be told, I’d wish I’d come up with this list myself:

1. Create micro-bloggin network. 2. Call it something lame. 3. Let people have 1000s of followers. 4. Watch as they judge themselves against other people's follower-counts. 5. Wait...(until they're super-vulnerable).  6. Give them lists so they can exclude shitty people (and be excluded themselves). 7. Cash in on billions of $$.


TechDays: Bruce Johnson on “SOLIDify Your ASP.NET MVC Applications”, Assless Chaps, Twitter and Opportunities

bruce johnson 1

This morning’s sessions in TechDays’ Developing for the Microsoft-Based Platform focuses on both the ASP.NET MVC web app framework and recommended object-oriented programming practices, namely the Model-View-Controller pattern with Colin Bowern’s presentation earlier this morning and now (at the time of this writing) the SOLID principles in Bruce Johnson’s session, SOLIDify Your ASP.NET MVC Applications.

Assless Chaps + Twitter = Business Opportunity

You might remember Bruce from the “Assless Chaps” story. The story can be summarized in the three tweets shown below.

First came Bruce’s response to my article about CodeCamp back in April, in which I forgot to mention the session he was doing:


I tweeted him back and then decided to throw in a jokey reply:


My thinking was: Hey, this is a conference of Microsoft developers! Yes, they’re a bright and talented bunch, and I like them, but they’re an older, corporate, more buttoned-down crowd. They’d never go for renaming a session from “Data Binding” to “Data Bondage”.

But Bruce and the Toronto Code Camp organizers surprised me – he changed the name of his session very quickly:


And since he responded to my challenge, I had to fulfill my end of the bargain:



The “Assless Chaps” story doesn’t end there. Yesterday, while we were hanging out by the Windows 7 lounge and the “Assless Chaps” story came up. Bruce told me that our conversation on Twitter about the assless chaps actually landed his company, ObjectSharp, some business. A local developer got curious as to what the “assless chaps” business was all about in Bruce’s and my conversation on Twitter and the ensuing conversation got them talking about ObjectSharp’s services, which in turn became a contract.

The moral of the story: there’s actual business value in Twitter and assless chaps. I may have to go buy a pair (I rented the ones pictured above).

There’s a tamer version of this story in Canadian Developer Connection.


Social Software Venn Diagram

Yeah, that’s about right:


And better yet, it’s available as a T-shirt!


[Found via Kevin Kelly.]