“The Warkies”: New informal name for Wine Blogger Awards

I really appreciate the effort Tom Wark put into the creating and driving the Wine Blogger Awards.  I hope we can carry it out in a way that doesn’t disrespect what he started.

As a display of my appreciation, I will from now on be informally referring to the Wine Blogger Awards as “The Warkies”.  I hope you’ll all join me in working on continually improving The Warkies (yes, the criticism of the Warkies of the past have helped and will continue to help as well).

Tom Wark – Thank you for giving the community the Warkies!  Cheers!

Suggestion Box: Wine Blogger Award categories for 1 week

Lots came out of WBC09, one of the main things was a loose integration of the AWBAs with WBC09.

This year we’re going full boat!  Full integration of the Wine Blogger Awards with the WBC10 in Walla Walla, WA!

We’re also making a few changes.  First, allow me to explain my thinking on this.  Tom Wark passed the AWBA stewardship to OWC.  I am integrating that WBC10 because rather than fragmenting the wine blogger events I wanted to bring them together.  We’re already a pretty distributed community so common events are what bring us together.  This will also allow a WBC activity to extend to more parts of the year.

We started this integration idea by bringing together European Wine Bloggers Conferenc and the North American Wine Bloggers Conference.  Now its just Wine Bloggers Conference.  Now we’re bringing in the AWBAs.  While we haven’t formally announced it, the name WILL be changed to “Wine Blogger Awards” and drop the “American” from the title.

Now, about the Wine Blogger Awards itself.  I originally started down the path of making wholesale changes and creating a process for working the blogs outside North America.  Tom cautioned me on how difficult that would be and he was most certainly right.  To that end, we’ll be taking baby steps.  I am submitting that we’ll have an “International” category meaning non-english speaking blogs.  And for English blogs, we’ll add ANY english blog from ANYWHERE to EVERY category.

Beyond that category, we would like to add 1-2 more categories.  I believe the best suggestion we recieved at the WBC was a category for “Best NEW Blog” meaning a blog that was less than 1 year out of the gate.  Sort of a Rookie of the Year award.

Beyond that, I’m pretty open.  So below I am opening the “Suggestion Box” for 1 week to collect any other suggestions for new categories beyond “International” and “Rookie of the Year”.  Fire away!

I just geeked out on my DirecTV DVR! 1TB (150 HD hours) up and running!


I have to give props to “Hollyman” blog. I just expanded my DirecTV HD-DVR to 150+ hours of HD storage. I got sick of the constant inability to record HD football because my DVR was running out of space.

The solution? Pay $200+ for marginally more space (HR23 model) or take my HR21 and expand it with an unsupported feature – External hard drive.

I did the latter. And for $150, I expanded the drive from ~300GB to 1 TB (1000 GB)! It was literally plug and play.

For the basics, check out the post cited above from Hollyman. In it he’s expanding an HR20 to 1 TB. That’s incrementally more complicate (has to do with the drive transfer rate and changing the drive from 3GBps to 1.5Gbps. I don’t recommend that. If you have an HR20, it’ll take a little more electronics tinkering (using jumpers to “downshift” the drive).

If you have an HR21 (like me) just skip the step about down-shifting the speed of the drive and go for it! I followed his steps exactly, down to the exact equipment, and it works perfectly. I have a bunch of HD stuff recorded in the first couple days and its still at 97% empty! This rocks!

Wow, I’m a tool…but a tool with a HUGE DVR! 🙂

Sleep Talkin’ Man – This is awesome! A blog about what this dude says in his sleep.

Here is a clip of This Morning. It was such fun!

For those not in the UK, here’s a 3 minutes clip on youTube:

This is awesome! A blog about what this dude says in his sleep.

Google Docs now “GDrive” enabled…


Now this is convenient.  Google Docs allows you to upload any file now.  That makes transporting much easier.  Its not a GDrive (or MobileMe competitor) yet because its not like it syncs the folders.  But I think there are apps for that (I was trying one that work OK, just wish it was a native function).

Either way, convenient way to keep important files handy.

The Original Wine 2.0 site is BACK!

A few years ago I created a Digg.com social news like site for wine dubbed “Wine Life Today”.  Its served bloggers well but at that time there weren’t many bloggers to speak of.  It actually drove traffic and good wine news got “voted up” while other stories just lingered.  I never decided whether or not to add RSS feed, it started off with a couple but I ended that.

Well, now there is a new incarnation.  There is an App that I was able to integrate with the OWC site that allows community submitted news to be added and voted on for the whole community.  When its added, the activity will appear in the OWC’s “Activity Feed”.

I’d like to get some testers.  Its possible, if this works, that Wine Life Today could expand back into a fully featured news community like I had originally imagined but didn’t have the time or resources to build out.

Please have a look and submit some stories and let me know what you think.