FAQ

by Volker Weber

"Why do you publish this website?"

Because it pleases me.

"Doesn't it take a lot of effort?"

Yes, it does. But it still pleases me.

"I want to give something back to you."

That's very kind of you. Pick anything from this list.

"How do you find all this stuff?"

I read a lot. People send me links.

"I have this really cool video. Do you want it?"

No.

"Why not?"

I probably have received it already a few dozen times.

"But it's really cool. And it's brand new. Never seen it before!"

If you received it by mail, so did I. If you found it on the net, send me a link. Do not send the file.

"I have this really funny Powerpoint file."

[Yawn]

"I would like to comment, but my english is terrible."

Write a comment. I don't care if your english is terrible. It will only get better if you use it. If you can better express yourself in german, then use german. I understand both. Don't be concerned that others might not be able to understand german. They can learn if they want.

"You deleted my comment."

Hmmh. It may have been spam, but then you would not complain. Or your comment was just fine, but you failed to enter your full name or your email address. If it looks funky like junk@mail.com you may have triggered my nervous delete finger.

"You deleted my comment again."

See above. I make no exceptions. No, "G.W.Bush" is not good enough. Save ourselves some work and don't try to force your way through.

"You deleted my comment again."

Maybe you just pissed me off. Hey, this is my site. I live here.

"This is censorship."

No, it isn't. Stop being a happy troll.

"But you are sooo wrong."

Go to bed. There is always somebody wrong on the Internet.

"I can't get video chat to work between Mac and PC. Will you help me?"

No. Call AOL.

"It's almost working. I can see the other person, but I can't hear him/her."

Call AOL.

"They won't answer my call."

Hire me. My rate would be onehundredandfifty an hour. Plus VAT and expenses. Four hours minimum. Dollars for small problems, Euros for big problems. British Pounds for management problems.

"You don't reply to my instant messages."

Do I know you?

"The link you posted is not safe for work."

That depends on your standards. In my world, people without clothes are OK, and violence is not. If your world is different, consider this site not safe for work.

"I have this really cool product. Will you write about it?

No.

"But it's really great."

Ok. Send one to my address.

"When do you send it back?"

That depends.

"Depends on what?"

If it is really crappy, you can have it back any time.

"But it isn't. It's really great."

In that case it may have won the editor-refuses-to-give-it-back award. Consider yourself warned.

"Can I have one of the products you don't need any more?"

No, you can't. They are all returned eventually.

"I have really exciting news. Do you want to take a look?"

Sure.

"I can, if you sign this non-disclosure agreement."

Forget it. I don't buy a cat in a bag.

"But I cannot show you, if you do not sign the agreement."

How is that my problem?

"Our lawyers don't trust you."

That sounds like a mutual problem. I don't trust them either.

"How can I trust you?"

Look at my track record. I have never revealed a source, never quoted anybody without asking first, and never broken a promise.

"But that's not how it works."

Maybe not for you. But certainly for me.

"Will you beta test my product?"

No.

"Why not?"

No.

"Why not?"

Which word is it, that you don't understand?

What does this mean: "Ceci n'est pas un blog"

It's french for "This is not a blog".

But it is.

If you say so. ;-)

No, seriously, what does it mean?

It's a reference to a Belgian surrealist artist, René François Ghislain Magritte and his famous painting.

I don't get it.

Again, how is that my problem? Just another hint. What are you seeing? A pipe, a painting of a pipe, a computer screen with a painting of a pipe?

But you are a blogger.

No, I am not.

But you are a reporter.

No, I am not.

An analyst?

No, I am not.

Then what are you?

If you need to put me in a box, I would be an author. I create stuff. Text, images, photos, drawings, screenshots. Some of it you can see here, some of it in magazines and other websites, some of it only if you are my client. Depending on what you see, you may view it as blogger, reporter, analyst. If you ask me, I am an author. I have some experience, with user interfaces, web sites, portals, communication software, even operating systems.

Will you speak at our conference?

No.

Why not?

That would be too expensive.

No, it won't. I will give you a free pass.

I meant too expensive for you. If I speak, you pay me.

I see. But exactly how expensive?

Well, that depends on what I should be speaking about. I take this very seriously. Just assume I need to work 20 hours on a talk. See above for my rates.

Anything else?

Yes. You cannot record my talk. You can't take photos. You will find the slides completely useless if you have not been present. And you will see that I am really really good at this.

[to be continued]

Disclaimer: No amimals were harmed during the making of this FAQ. Batteries not included. Void where prohibited.

Ceci n'est pas un blog

vowe.net is a personal website published by Volker Weber a.k.a. vowe. I am an author, consultant and systems architect based in Darmstadt, Germany.

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