For a guy that I've never met face-to-face, Jeff Pulver sure has a strong influence on my thinking. He bought me (and the rest of the bar) drinks at PodCamp Boston last year and this is when he popped on my radar. When Chris Brogan began working for him I started paying even more attention to what he was doing and what he was up to. He's a successful guy who enjoys life. I respect the hell out of that.
This morning he was talking about his social media sunrise and how it has evolved as of late. Personally I've always referred to this time as my morning surf. What sites I go to and how I interact with people is in a constant state of change. Before RSS, I even had a folder for bookmarks called that which I'd step through one by one every morning. Getting on that list was highly selective. Now I just open up Firefox and tabs of gMail, Twitter, Bloglines and a few other pop up and are ready for me. I don't open up Skype until I'm ready to interact fully with the world.
I wonder who you have never met, but that influences you?
There are many other influencers in my life, but very few that I've never met. The only other that I can think of at the moment is P.W. Fenton who certainly has influence over me and yet we have yet to share a grill and a cold beer. I'm sure as soon as I post this, I'll think of someone else.