Mashup Camp fuled by Guiness


Mashups are fun, Guiness is good, Dublin is cool – combine them all and get Mashup Camp 5 in Dublin. The highlight of the Camp was too meet a lot of smart people and talk tech. Some of the highlights:

  • Chad Dickerson from Yahoo Developer Network talked about web site performance. According to Yahoo’s experience 80-90% of the performance of a web site is in the frontend and only 10-20% in the backend. I must say that that these are suprising numbers, but as the worlds number 1 web destination Yahoo should know. So improving the front end performance has a huge impact and Yahoo are listing 13 rules to help you do so, as well as the Firefox plugin YSlow to help you analyze a sites frontend performance. YSlow is already a critical part of my web toolkit, too bad that it is very depressing seeing YSlow’s reports on my websites, I have a lot of work to do! Chad also mentioned Yahoos GUI design patterns that can come in handy for anybodyworking with web design. His slides are on
  • Performance was also a subject for a later discussion where John Herren and others talked about improving backend performance. The two things that really stuck in my mind was to use a PHP Accelerator to precompile PHP code (instead of doing that on the fly for every request) and to use cookies as a light weight free client side cache.
  • There was an interesting discussion about how to find Mashups, especially in a near future when there are mashups built on mashups and the users are not developers but normal mortals. The Search Engines today help us answer the question “what is”, but searching for mashups or apps is more a question of “how do I”. The options discussed covered everything from ranking mashups based on popularity and meta data to using introspection to automatically figure out what the mashups are doing. It would be interesting to have a system that could track the interactions between APIs and Mashups in a way that a developer could take a mashup apart to reuse just the parts he is interested in. is the start of such a system, but it is still only built on the basis of that the mashup developers gives the right meta data about their mashups. Since John Musser from Programmableweb was part of the discussion I am hoping to see some of this implemented there soon 🙂
  • Speedgeeking was as always a part of Mashup Camp, it is basically like speed dating but for demos. 5 minute intervalls to demo your stuff for a new group, and it went on for an hour this time. I built openkapow robots on request and it went pretty well. Building one REST robot to an unknown site every 5 minutes was a risk, but most of them went very well (search for tag “mashupcamp” to find my creations). My Kapow collegue Benjamin demoed his cool Blackberry-LinkedIn-Xing Mashup (also using openkapow). The winner of speedgeeking was the Mashup Camp veteran John Herren and 2nd place as well as the Winner of IBM’s Business Mashup Challenge was Dennis Deery (congrats to you both). Check out one of the most pointless results of the speedgeeking at LOLCatService – the most pointless web service ever.

David Berlind, one of the organisers, have written a good summary of the camp on ZDNet if you want to read more. If you understand Swedish you can also listen to an interview with me from MashupCamp at

All in all it was a great Camp. Not a great number of participants, but the number is less important than the quality of the people. I learned a lot, met great people and came home with my head swirling with ideas. Next Camp is in Mountain View in March and I hope to see you there, if that is too far for you Mashup Camp is also coming back to Ireland next year.

Enterprise Mashup Infrastructure & Where are all the APIs and Web Services?


After some work the titles and descriptions for my presentations on the Web 2.0 Expo in Berlin and the Mashup Camp in Dublin during the coming weeks are now set, now it is just the small work of doing the acctual content left…

Enterprise Mashup Infrastructure: How Web 2.0 technologies are used inside Enterprises today
This is the Web 2.0 Expo presentation and it will be about how Mashups enable companies to solve problems quickly and efficiently, and also deal with problems that are impossible to figure out using traditional technologies. I will cover the basics of mashups and the technology behind them, real-life examples of how mashups are used within enterprises today and what the mashup infrastructure looks like.

In an enterprise environment, mashups can be seen as an extension and a compliment to SOA, and not just as simple Google Maps applications that are viewed on the web. This approach enables self-service IT that lets business users build the situational applications they need to solve the problems at hand. A key problem in enterprise mashup building is how to get access to abundance of unstructured data both inside and outside the company firewall. And, this is a problem that can now be solved in minutes rather than hours or days. How this is done will be shown in a short demonstration.

Where are all the APIs and Web Services? Build APIs to any web site in minutes using Kapow Mashup Server.
In this Mashup Camp presentation I will zoom in on one of the most forgotten parts of Mashups. There are many great tools available to build the user interface on a Mashup, but were are all the APIs and Web Services needed to feed the Mashup? These APIs will not appear magically and even if more APIs are created every day it is going quite slow. Using the Kapow Mashup Server and you can build an API to almost any web site in a matter of minutes. Suddenly you can use the whole internet as a structured data source to feed your mashups.

See you there!
If this is anything you like to hear about and happen to come to Berlin or Dublin then please drop by and hear me speak.

Going to Web 2.0 Expo or Mashup Camp


Soon it is time for me to have a couple of intense conferense weeks. November 5-8 I am going to Web 2.0 Expo in Berlin and then November 10-12 I am going to Mashup Camp in Dublin. It will be two widely different events I suspect, so I am looking forward to them both. Since I am going to have presentations on both of them I am busy with doing some power point programming about Mashups and Kapow right now.

If any of you reading this are going to either Web 2.0 Expo or Mashup Camp (especially any Swedes!) then please let me know and we can meet over some sponsored beer and discuss life, universe and ridicolus Facebook evaluations …

Impressions from Mashup Camp 4


Mashup Camp is an unconference about Mashups and everything related to Mashups. This was my second Mashup Camp, last Mashup Camp was in Boston in January and it was a brilliant event. I learned a lot, met a lot of great people and it opened my eyes in many ways. Last week Mashup Camp 4 was in Mountain View, California and again I meet great people and had some interesting discussions (check out some photos here) But something was off, maybe too few people, maybe not the right people, I am not sure. Maybe it was just my high expectations, maybe it was that I couldn’t attend more than the last day (Camp is 2 days, with a prequal 2 days of Mashup University) or maybe the competition of other events meant that not enough people attended. According to David Berlind (one of the organisers) they will go back to having the Camp early in the year, which I think is a good idea.

Some highlights stole the show in many ways. Joost and others are trying to create the next generation television experience, but I think they missed something extremely important, and that is all the content already available on the internet. You might have heard of a small site called YouTube, and there are also a few other video sites out there (and by a few I mean 1000s and 1000s). is a great site that allows you to watch all these videos without having to go around to all the different video sites and without having to load each individual video yourself. The videos are shown back to back creating a channel with continous content. Either use some of the premade channels or make your own by searching for whatever you are interested in from whatever site you are interested in. Definitly the coolest site I saw at the Camp, a brilliant use of all the videos available on the internet. They have built a great video site without having to host videos or have to worry about all the bandwidth the videos are eating up. Check it out, I am a total junkie already.

Some other highlights were

  • KarmaGeek – a try of leveraging all our Geek knowledge for the benefit of Non Profits. Still very early days (started at the last Mashup Camp), but it has real potential.
  • Google Mashup Editor – a cool mashup building tool aimed at developers. It requires some coding, but the results I saw where impressive and the coolest thing is the easy integration of other Google services such as Maps.
  • Apatar – a very interesting open source project building a way to create workflows between different applications and databases.

Early early days
It is really clear after this Camp that these are the really early days of Mashups. Even at Mashup Camp there are many people that are trying to figure out what this Mashup thing is all about. There are some attempts to do Mashup tools and frameworks of different kinds. BEA Pages and IBM QEDWiki are a couple from the big boys aimed at Enterprises, Google Mashup Editor, Teqlo and Bungee Labs are a couple aimed at the consumer market. I am happy to say that Kapow Technologies is in the forefront of the Mashup wave, a good place to work right now. We are spending a lot of time thinking about Mashups and where things are heading and so far we seem to be on the right track (f you haven’t checked out yet then please do so now). I am looking forward to following Mashups as they develop and as it starts to be accepted (and maybe even a requirement) inside big companies. It is clear that Mashups are growing up and are becoming more than just an excuse to use Google Maps (more about that in a later post).

Hope to see you in Dublin
Next Mashup Camp will be in Dublin in September. I hope I can go to that one, it will be really interesting to see what people will come to an European Camp (it will also mean a shorter flight and no jetlag for me, which would be nice for a change). A Camp fuled by Guniess should be fun!