Everything is amazing, nobody is happy...

Louis CK appearance on Conan O'Brien's 03.18.2009 show viral video on YouTube

Enjoy...hopefully this video won't be removed from YouTube by DMCA



Thomas Edison's Automatic Telegraph at the 1872 Centennial Expedition
First keyboard of The Victorian Internet

For those of us born smack in the middle of the Baby Boom, the advances in communications, medicine, transportation and social norms is staggering. We're fortunate to live in a period of history when advances equivalent to those in the Renaissance have occurred at lightning speeds in a mere few generations. The Dark Ages lasted from the fall of Rome in the 5th century until the Renaissance began in the 14th...centuries of decline in culture and no progress, generations where life never changed and knowledge stood still, secreted away.


POTUS LBJ and Obama: Early Adopters of Communications Tools

...Presidential Electronic Trendsetters in footsteps of Lincoln.

"President Johnson believed in using the telephone, and his staff saw to it that he was never more than two minutes from one no matter where he was."

From The Heritage of Time: The People and Times of GTE Southwest 1876-1988, by Larry Johnson. (1990)

LBJ on phone in Oval Office.
Notice the large PBX console,
speakerphone box and
thick cable connecting the console.

President Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) was an early adopter of complex telecommunications to stay in constant communication wherever he went. Through this method he was able to keep tabs on a volatile social political environment he wanted to control. He advanced the use of telecommunications in the Office of the President and the White House, paving the way for a 21st century President Obama to use a Blackberry device.

When he was elected Vice President in 1960 LBJ's "telephone mania" was kicked into high gear and he required even more telephone equipment at the LBJ Ranch . The ranch was served by the Independent Telco Southwestern States Telephone and the high level communication needs in ranch country required a complex arrangement between them and the nearby local Bell System company, Southwestern Bell in Austin.

The assassination of President Kennedy meant an immediate increased demand for instant communications at the ranch by the "always on" new President. On Privateline.com in Telephones at the LBJ Ranch the story of how sudden communications needs were met at the LBJ Ranch, during that national emergency, is recounted from the out of print Good Connections: A Century of Service by the Men and Women of Southwestern Bell by David Park Jr. It is a study in how the regulated wireline telecommunications infrastructure stepped up to meet the needs of a President demanding instant communications in a manner that gives every indication he would make use of wireless devices and the internet today. Also in that section is Don Kimberlin's brush with LBJ's telephone mania and experience with POTUS setup for President Richard M. Nixon.

Going Mobile
LBJ's console
underdesk pullout
Air Force One

President Johnson pushed the envelop of available telecommunications for instant messaging through electronic communications in the 1960s and that included personal involvement in the conducting of a war. A century earlier, President Abraham Lincoln pressed boundaries of available electronic technology by extensive use of the telegraph for instant messaging.

President Abraham Lincoln is a hero of President Barack Obama and Mr. Lincoln's T-Mails: How Abraham Lincoln Used the Telegraph to Win the Civil War by Tom Wheeler (2006) is a friendly read on how President Lincoln combined his skill as a writer with use of the telegraph for effective immediate electronic communication to win the Civil War. Tom Wheeler plays a role and is influential in President Obama's telecommunications policy. It is helpful in understanding how electronic communications that advance in one President's administration permanently changes social communication in the Office of the President .

Blackberry President

President Obama's Air Force One Phone


"Oh Doctor please, some more of these, outside the door..."

JFK 1963 Phone Call requesting "a little extra medication" sent up


White House Operators 1970


Another Google Fail? Gary Busey on Business! GotVMail?

Longtime GrandCentral users unable to upgrade to Google Voice

I started using GrandCentral before they were bought by Google and they put it into beta. Actually I ended up with two numbers, one from an invitation sent to me after Google took over.

How I solved my "one-number" problem, a different way a long time ago, is another story. There is some over-complicated reinvention of the wheel with these web dashboard VoIP virtual phone services for solving an old problem. Considering that for most people who call me, these days area code is irrelevant, as are long distance charges. I live in a 10 digit dialing mandated city and also in mind. There are a lot of people who live and work here with out of state or oustate area codes and it's become irrelevant for voice. If I'm somewhere else it becomes more irrelevant. Cell phones with national plans and plenty of minutes but data plans that are a killer. Skype is also a viable option, with webcam and especially for international calls.

My main purpose for using GrandCentral is that it provides a phone number in another city, where I have a lot of contacts, to easily reach me. I like having control over programming the direction of calls, messages, announcements, blocking. Additionally I can also control these features other than on GrandCentral's web page by a widget on a web page or through my phone.

London Faraday International Control Centre
(Overseas Operators) cord switchboard ca 1977

This morning I logged into GrandCentral and was excited to see the message offering me the chance upgrade to Google Voice as was ballyhooed announced. My plan was to blog today about how the upgrade went and the new features. Now I'll leave that to the bloggers who were able to continue with the upgrade.

My plans changed when my welcome page with the upgrade notification suddenly became "Your account is not yet ready to be upgraded. Please check back shortly." While the Twitterverse is fluttering madly over Google Voice or some decrying the same fate as myself, I'm instead blogging now about why that gave me pause to re-think why am I using GrandCentral at all or upgrading to Google Voice. Just pondering while waiting...

Do I really want to use another Google service? Do I want all my stuff on their cloud? I recognize that data collection in the cloud is largely unavoidable but I'll split mine up amongst clouds. I'm thinking of diversified financial investing as a concept for web services, although the choices are narrowing for diversity.

The new Google Voice Features, even the voicemail transcriptions, are not unique. The question is how great is the assembly and do they actually reliably function? I don't know yet.

Larry Majid of CNET gushes "Google Voice: Flawed but still awesome." TelephonyOnline's Rich Karpinski writes a good "Analysis: Google Voice versus...everybody?"

RingCentral and Ribbit from BT, GotVMail, OneBox and others provide similar services and don't count telcos and cable providers out yet. Then there's the re-invention of the home phone sparked off by the Verizon Wireless Hub, a tempting alternative for growing microbusinesses to downshifting home office professionals and entrepreneurs. Google still doesn't seem sure what to do with YouTube after major missteps and then there's Gmail...

Amazon is in the cloud, Paypal and Skype are still alive and Twitter is underestimated for it's capabilities beyond 140 character messages. Yahoo isn't dead and there's Mozilla...

Google's Eric Schmidt thinks Twitter is a "poor man's email" while in the same interview conceding the economy is "pretty dire." So how many people will be buying into rich man's email (Gmail?) in an extended recession? Google Voice as a rich man's...phone service?

Inside the Entrepreneutrial Mind of the Inimitable Gary Busey

GotVMail is like a Mullet or Mohawk, by Gary Busey

Subscribe to
garybuseyonbusiness on YouTube. Get the embed code to put the "Gary on Business" video on your site by going to Gary Busey on Business on the GotVMail site!



The revoked upgrade caused me to think about what I had been putting off, how to better simplify and integrate the few phone numbers I'm now down to, with better messaging. The GrandCentral platform number works reasonably well and when they do eventually offer Google Voice to me, I'll upgrade and use one number as long as it's free.

Realistically, if "Google is going to revolutionize the telecom business" it can't remain free to customers forever, much less in our lifetime. Charging is inevitable, after the teaser, because advertising alone cannot support the type of network and traffic it will take to "revolutionize telecom", even with billions in your pocket, eventually you must turn a profit. Customers will have "one number for life" if they pay for it in addition to being tracked by Google.

There's a fundamental shift here: the person using a service like Google Voice is a "user" and not a "customer" in the sense a telco or cable provider views it.

I can accomplish what Google Voice does much simpler, for less cost and trouble in the long run, another way right now. In the near future I see a need for some of the services of web based VoIP service with feature control and will now start looking in advance at the options, to be prepared for when the time is right. Who knows what else may develop by then?

Does anyone want to purchase a GrandCentral 602 Phoenix Arizona number?


Amazon Kindle 2 Unboxing

Jon Rettinger of jon4lakers.com gives a good overview in this video

I really want an Amazon Kindle 2 and it is on my short list of must have items. Upcoming blogs will be about devices and applications I use (or plan to use) and how I try to Keep It Simple Stupid with my use of technology.

Twitter has been an example of my experimenting with a subversive technology going mainstream and I'm still exploring it every day. More comment on that to come also.

The underlying philosophy I operate with, before I adopt and use any technology, is it must integrate with my organic real offline life easily and improve my life without distracting from it.




Evan Williams on social networking and Twitter.com

Evan Williams on social networking


Evan Williams on Twitter.com

"twitter is an asynchronous relationship model"

"Twitter is over capacity"

This is the status of Twitter at this moment...

the site has been slow to respond all day.

Twitter is over capacity.
Too many tweets! Please wait a moment and try again.


I've only been using it a few weeks and already I miss it when it's down!