Nokia, yes the smartphone maker with 40% of mobile handsets worldwide, has slithered along the past couple years consuming some excellent location services and folding their technology and expertise into the mix. I personally see the possibility of Nokia to explode on the scene with the possibility of an amazing location and time based social network and friend finder service it would have many moving to that platform. Let's peek at the purchases:
- 2006 - Gate5 is purchased. They provided wireless mapping, routing and navigation
- 2007 - Navteq is purchased for an amazing $8 billion giving them an edge on location data as a service
- 2008 - Plazes, from Berlin, is purchased adds another 13 people to the team. I personally have utilized Plazes since early beta and they layer GPS, MAC address and wifi access points to pinpoint your location. They also allow you to post where you will be, not just where you are or have been. A swift move by Nokia. This added hundreds of thousands of locations (per news articles) to the Nokia location landscape.
- 2009 - Dopplr is now purchased. Before TripIt and some others, this was the go to site for road warriors. There is history on restaurants, hotels and many other venue types already built into the system. Timelines were established and sharing your trips was easy. There is already an iPhone application which adds an interesting twist, but I don't see that vanishing. Why not expand the userbase as far as possible?
In my opinion, all of this bases around the fact that Nokia needs a major stake in application services to compete with Apple and the iPhone. The Ovi Store
, the Nokia answer to the AppStore, is where you go to load and find your applications for their smartphone. Having a device that runs numerous apps but is the leader in location services is a wave that young professionals and youth would quickly purchase if it means locating friends and planning events easier. Integration into the address book would be a simple click to select someone, select a highly rated restaurant, make the reservation and hook them into the invitation in a few clicks. When I walk down the street my phone tells me that Bob is only two blocks over at a local pub. When I land in London it tells me that 4 business contacts are in the area or have plans to be near me based on my upcoming itinerary.
Taking location services and turning it into face-to-face contact is the next move in this type of social networking
Last year I made an OPML of the Top 150
social media blogs, and just this last week Evan Carmichael
posted his listing of the 2009 Top 50 Social Media bloggers. A great collection. But once again I needed it for my feedreader and so do you!
So I present the OPML file for you to place into any feedreader, including Google Reader. We should also connect on GOogle Reader to share interesting news feeds. Feel free to add me idoNotes at gmail
Click here for the file
It has been a couple months since I had another VGS
posting in the series, I need to address all the publisher's of random content just to blog, serve a feed or tweek a twitter. With the introduction of both aggregation and lifestreaming (definitions here Link
) sites that pop up like a high schooler's acne, we are drawn to learn every infinitesimal detail about someone. People that start strong with business purpose and a particular topic in mind are soon flung into VGS where they must tell us when they wake, how many times they put spoon to mouth with cereal and then how bad traffic is. I am not saying that for extreme and funny stories this is not appropriate, but everyday? When do you realize that you are no longer lifestreaming and are minutia-streaming? I don't need to know you cat took a nap (mine does), I don't need to know how long it took you to drive to work today (34 minutes), I don't need to know how many spoonfuls of cereal you had (large spoon and half bowl so I guess 35?) nor do I want to know your location information on every block corner as you walk to lunch (10th and Washington).
How much time do you now lose daily not only putting out as much content as you can, but sucking it down from others like it is the life giving superstitious water only found in movies. Can you quantify the return you get from the amount you publish? Is there value in the information you are serving? Do you lose followers based on specific types of postings? If this is a yes, admit your VGS and fight it.
Learn how to rationalize what needs to be lifestreamed, what is quality content and what should go to friends only. You know it is possible to maintain more than one account that pulls different information right? Don't fall into the grips of VGS where you are not only the consumer but the server of immediate data into each other's lives. Be strong in the drive to push the screen on the iPhone, spin the ball on the Blackberry and for damn sakes, stop learng how 2 shrtn each wrd to fit n2 SMS screens.
Since you need something more to read for your VGS, here you can see all the previous postings:
| ||Created ||Subject |
| ||09/18/2008 ||Virtual Gratification Syndrome (VGS) - Social Stalking |
| ||06/23/2008 ||Virtual Gratification Syndrome (VGS) - Forcing Temporary Remission |
| ||05/12/2008 ||Virtual Gratification Syndrome (VGS) - Profile of a Social Networker |
| ||05/08/2008 ||Virtual Gratification Syndrome (VGS) - the dosage issue |
| ||04/14/2008 ||Tweeting in the bathroom - the new social crime |
| ||04/07/2008 ||Virtual Gratification Syndrome (VGS) - the variance |
| ||03/11/2008 ||Virtual Gratification Syndrome (VGS) - you have it|
Downloadable OPML file
I saw the link today
for a list compiled of the top 150 Social Media Blogs. I liked it but was disappointed to see that it was not in OPML. It was far easier to add the feeds and then whittle them down if I didn't like them. So I went ahead and did it myself as a gift to all of you
Here is the OPML file, just download it and import into your favorite feed reader! And once again, if you are not sharing links with me on Google Reader
, get at me! add IdoNotes gmail com on google chat and get to sharing!
Downloadable OPML file
This idea of using a private, open-source microblog service for reporting and alerts intrigued me. I was posting some tweets and received a response from @DomiNoYesMaybe. What I found was that they had configured Laconi.ca for their company but went far beyond normal communication channels. They had found out that their 'engineers' (for lack of me knowing a better word) had the daunting task of watching production machines on the shop floor. They had to check how they were performing as well as the current status of all sorts of variables. What they also discovered is that the software running on the machines was able to product a HTTP post/get command ability. Before I describe, this was the outcome:
@IR_CK1_001 #data Temp:146 Hum:4.36% Yield:98.6%
What they have done is enabled each machine with it's own Laconi.ca account covering 20 plants in 10 countries in the range of 600-700 machines. I am sharing this since his twitter feed is not private nor was this a DM. In essence, the engineers now can run a client and subscribe, or follow, all of the machines across the globe to get a constant flow of performance. Not only are they able to see a trend coming, but they can get to repairs and downed machines faster. While letting the machines themselves cry out for help.
Take that to all the pundits that say there is no benefit in this type of microblogging technology
Let's get right to the figure they state for the market between the years of 2008 and 2012:
The Radicati Group forecasts the overall Enterprise 2.0 Software market to reach $842 million by 2012
You must be kidding me? The report looked at more than a handful of leading vendors and compiled the enterprise software market as:
- social bookmarking
- social networks
- "and more"
With the push to get more of this ability into the enterprise, I cannot see why this number is so low and it totally eliminates all the smaller vendors making inroads into the companies. When you only look at a few leading names, there must be an account for the consumer push and adoption rate of getting tools to broaden employee knowledge and expanding the sharing of ideas and hidden content that has always been stored in email and chats.
Software development is expanding at an incredible rate and it is bringing all the data and thoughts that people have during the day to the top like cream, being surfaced through Enterprise 2.0 applications. When the CIO goes home and gets him or herself on Facebook or MySpace, you can bet that the company will soon be doing the same.
It has been a couple months since I had a VGS
posting in the series, but this one was quite due. Social Stalking
is becoming a reality. The ability to watch and learn infinite information about people without them really knowing you are watching is a scary thought. I used to revel in the ease of usage at sites like Spokeo
, that I even interviewed in this podcast
. Creating Imaginary Friends
is a highlight of the software. All of this opens the door to Social Stalking
How does Social Stalking work? It begins with someone that gets so over zealous with knowing everything you do, every post you make and every thought you have, they first try to join every network you are on. From there they attempt to be your friend. If there is no meaningful dialog ensuing between you, you naturally raise an eyebrow. When they show up unexpectedly at a coffee shop that you sent via Twitter
or FireEagle, they step over any boundary set. It quickly escalates as Louis Gray found out by getting constant phone calls, emails and other communication from someone. I am taking all of this past your point of reason. There is ways to glean personal information from most of these networks without the person every knowing it.
But who is to blame?
1. You are first to blame for not securing your information. Next for even directly sharing all your information to anyone that wants to look
2. The stalker themselves fall right after yourself since they are the ones in pursuit. If they are spending the time to track your every move and thought, there is a much larger and looming issue than simple privacy
3. The software is not to blame under any circumstance in this list. It only posts what you provide and shares how you have enabled security
After some analyzing of the sites themselves that offer the services, none have a policy in place to address this concern. Most stand aside from offering such a service to not get themselves in the line of fire of editing or user mediation. I will say that many sites have cyber-bullying rules, but it stops there. Simply following someone is not part of bullying.
I have a first line of attack in mind that is taking quick shape.
P.S. (Oct 21 2008) there is a great feedback posting you can find right here
by Erin McMahon
When you see one of the previous engineers from Google search, that also happened to invent a search technology that Google bought, state they went out on their own and made a better one, you jump to try it. Apparently no one said that when I jumped there was no safety net. Incredibly disappointing to start. You cannot make such a large boast, open your doors and have empty shelves in the store Cuil (pronounced 'cool')
is currently, appropriately named. As it is not hot, nor does it give better results so far. It just opened today for processing searches. I get that much. But I did not expect the disappointment I received after reading this:
For starters, Cuil's search index spans 120 billion Web pages.
Patterson believes that's at least three times the size of Google's index, although there is no way to know for certain. Google stopped publicly quantifying its index's breadth nearly three years ago when the catalog spanned 8.2 billion Web pages.
Cuil won't divulge the formula it has developed to cover a wider swath of the Web with far fewer computers than Google. And Google isn't ceding the point: Spokeswoman Katie Watson said her company still believes its index is the largest.
After getting inquiries about Cuil, Google asserted on its blog Friday that it regularly scans through 1 trillion unique Web links. But Google said it doesn't index them all because they either point to similar content or would diminish the quality of its search results in some other way. The posting didn't quantify the size of Google's index.
While I still have hopes that the results will get strong as they finish cleaning and updating, for now you are still getting better results elsewhere. This is a hard start for anyone wishing to challenge Google in searching. I did appreciate the limited filter to attempt to provide a clean filter, mainly when doing demos and such on stage and don't like Google surprises. While not perfect, it did a decent job.
The suggestions of alternate searches was also very welcome and did pen some doors to sites I might have missed with my query. It was not clear that is what the site did until I clicked around the top some when I first tried searches.
The results are shown in blocks (much like Alltop and any other widget looking site) instead of one long column. This leads you to see things a bit easier, yet the actual results were highly scattered or missing. Simple searches for my own names (TheSocialNetworker and IdoNotes) returned some hits, but not even the pages of the sites themselves. Give it a shot, since I know you will.
RSS has become such a high flow, nay a waterfall of information, we are always on the hunt for the better, bigger, stronger feed reader. I have no intention of specifying, recommending or telling you which to get. I will make a bunch of links for options at the end. Instead, I wanted to direct you into what you should look for in your reader and what feedback we need to give the readers developers. The overall theme is I want to spend the minimalist amount of time managing my reader, make it do the work for me to the best possible outcome. Do this from anywhere and be fast at it. A big list, but it can be done
The ability to give more feeds higher importance is a key factor and quite the limiting one at that in selecting a reader. Most of the readers simply let you import, add and watch RSS feeds, no matter what kind they are. But how do I always get the most important ones to the top? A finely tuned ranking system will let you specify particular authors, topics, keywords and postings that should move their way to some form of alternate and pronounced notification. This could be highlighted, always sitting at the top of your reader or it simply moves it's way there. Alphabetical is a nice option when you have a few feeds, but when you reach maximum capacity, it is unacceptable as the only way to view them. Even folders have the same effect, so don't attempt to go there with me.
Now in saying that, ranking needs to be coupled with locating, that I talk about below. A proper reader will take my keywords and add that to not only the weight I manually assign, but make it stronger in ranking when it includes a keyword. Heck, even MarshallK on Twitter liked the fact he could see his feeds by how often he clicked to read more of the feed item. That is taking ranking up a notch if it did the rest.
This is quite simply the easiest portion. I want the same feeds to show as read/unread across multiple machines and devices. Web, mobile and desktop. Let me control how often you expire older entries out in a main profile and then case by case basis. From there, possibly archive them in the same structure I had them for searchable reference. It is just text for gosh sakes all to the same sources. You just need to store my preferences and markings. Make the reader easy on the eyes, transformed for mobility and minimal clicks to get things done lilke sharing, marking, commenting and storing.
Allow for me to specify certain authors, keywords and sites from ever showing. A blacklisting of sorts for my reader. I love this site YY, but never want a posting on ZZ to show in the stream. Not a difficult concept is it?
I hit on this above in rankings and should expand more. Simply forcing me to go and find more feeds in todays massive waterfall is unacceptable. Make the software work for me, not just with me. Let it go find me content based on items I tag the most, read the most or simply specify. Bring me information instead of me having to forage my way and click to add feeds to my readers.
So you may have even one or two more items that are required for your daily ability to keep up. I would love to hear about them. Comment on here or send me a Tweet.
Some choices that I have played with or use.. in no order nor even closely inclusive at all.
for even more, see my Diigo bookmarks right here for another dozen or so..
A recent search against my blog prompted me to actually define the profile of a social networker with VGS
(click to view the entire series) With the complexity of the affliction, who rightfully falls under the category "Social Networker" ?
Could you point them out in a crowd? Are they required to wear little widgets on their clothes showing their affiliation with specific sites? Would a t-shirt with the words
help the process of identification?
Let's explore some.
An immediate warning sign of an overindulger might be one of the following as the Person in Question does the following:
- has accounts on most major social network sites
- has accounts on most unknown social network sites
- must get access to all beta programs on social network sites
- runs social networking standalone apps (such as Twihrl and Facebook chat clients)
- has added numerous plug-ins to browsers to make accessing social network sites in mass easier
- loaded an application like Flock to attempt bringing sites into one interface
Any of the above alone might make you think you have strongly identified a social networker. But, that really doesn't define a profile of one now does it? It describes behavior and attempt through actions instead.
A true profile is:
- a person with an underlying need to be part of a larger community, either through virtualization or in real life
- Some go so far as to bring the two together by meeting with the virtual community in places such as conferences or gatherings at local bars and Panera's Bread locations
- This person finds themselves knowing more about strangers than family, even with some of the information being falsely presented
- The profile allows some variance for those that actual Google another person to gather as much information to verify what is being told. Others take the word of referrers as a voucher for someone they want as part of their community
- This person finds a fixed set of tools that must be running at all times, even on mobile devices
Another part of the profile is:
- the unwillingness to not be online to keep up with the never ending flow of information presented
- This person will spend hours each day going back through the history of sites to catch up where they went to bed the night or even days before
An advanced profile shows:
- those with higher than average technical skills able to create RSS feeds and Yahoo pipes to stream the information in a cleansed format.
- the ability to bring interaction into web, chat and widgets
- any attempt to find a single tool that not only allows blacklisting of specific information (such as Facebook birthdays), but postings on when someone drinks coffee
As you can see, this is only the beginning of a true serial profile creation process. As the social networker role emerges, we will be able to fully define and point these people out in a crowd. Shirt or no shirt
I have highlighted, defined and explored VGS
the past month or so. Apparently it is an Internet phenomenon with the number of links back and chatter on the pull of Virtual Gratification Syndrome. However, dosage has become the most recent issue. Normally you would get your minimum intake from your news readers and some chat services. More often than not, you would overdose to the point you had to turn some of them off entirely. I watched Scoble do this today when he turned off Twitter and FriendFeed but was soon posting on both again anyway.
Here is how dosage is being affected. With the splitting of content across services, you either have to be on them all, or watch your VGS flare up since you no longer can get everything you want in one place. Cases in point:
- People aren't commenting on blogs as much, they comment on blogs in FriendFeed
- People don't blog as much, they Twitter
- Bookmark services now add up to over 200, which one do you think I use?
- RSS readers are numerous and offer alternate abilities, some just for feeds (a la my Google shared), some for friends and some for social networking around feeds
- People don't send files over email, Drop.io and Pownce are trying to take that market.
So how do you cope? Where do you turn? When you start to get the VGS shakes, do you fire up 17 browser windows, a Twitter client and a multi chat interface (Digsby or Trillian)?
As each new service comes along, a small percentage of poeple move over. Not always because it is new, that is for immediate testing, but the value of the service. Then you have a few choices:
- Create a mega feed as I did in Jaiku long ago
- Pull as many friends with you as you can to the new service and start again
- Leave everyone behind to find you if they want
- Move to the new service and push everything back into it, as I did with Facebook.
So VGS dosage not only comes from the amount of time and energy you put into getting your fix, but the scattering of your suppliers. Do you drive to every new intersection to pick up your fix? Hope a central supplier comes in? Or find new ones where you were before when someone leaves?
Tell me, where is your daily dosage?
I find myself overwhelmed like many of you with enormous amounts of feeds, news and sites that I wish I could absorb in one sitting. I have recently taken a different approach to get back some of my time and allow for exploring more. Let's go into it.
First, there is the news reader dilemma. I know there is specific content I always want to see and topics I wish I could find more on. News readers like Particls
take care of this for me. I not only give it all my feeds to go and find, it also takes key word searches, and key word rankings, to go out and explore and find more articles based on my interests. If I find I am not liking something, I can deny more on that topic, source or even blacklist it all together. THink about this. A newsreader that takes a topic and finds content and feeds instead of specifying feeds and hoping for content (much like you hope from me all the time). Timesaving and absorbing new knowledge is the key here. I have found some online readers that are trying to learn from you and they do ok. But ok is not enough unless you can plug a feeder into my head at night while I sleep. I need finely tuned, cleansed and accurate feeds in a timely basis.
Second there is self built alerts from items like Google and TweetScan. Unless you can watch the public Twitter stream, you miss tons of good links and conversations. Using such tools as TweetScan
, I configure a listing of items to watch and each day it delivers me those Tweets. I can then scan quick and see if I want to comment or even follow that person. Not only have I sparked good conversations, I find new people to follow based on topics they write about. Instead of waiting for people to find me to follow back.
Social aggregators, or alligators. Whatever you want to call them. The large mouth of conversation as people tell us all about their entire life. I did a nice piece comparing aggregation versus lifestreaming a while ago here
. My point is, people control what they put into the stream,. not you deciding. So even with all the good stuff, as soon as someone inserts a site in their stream you don't like, you get the crud too. We need an aggregation service which a person lists all their stuff and then let me pick from there. A tuned and tailored information feed of poeple I want to follow.
Attention profiles. Do they exist in the true sense? How do they know what you attention is? Are things you look at required for work or for outside learning? Attention profiles are a new area I am exploring so my opinion is lopsided right now. I will refrain since I admit I need more practice before I speak.
While reading Twitter today, SheGeeks
asked the question, what is the difference? There is a symbiotic relationship between the two, while still maintaining differences. The current sites out there do not reflect true aggregation, while many are attempting to do lifestreaming (like Profilactic
The mere definition is the pulling together of disparate information to be available at once place. FriendFeed
is a form of aggregation, as well as Spokeo
. I go to one place to find the information. LDAP services give a good example. I can federate, or look everywhere for the information, or collect all of you together in aggregation to look in one place. I can force federation through some of the social products, or I can let you aggregate all of your information into a social profile that gives one output. So what you end up with is little pockets of aggregation by person, but not for me in consumability. For true aggregation to occur and be functional in social networking, each person must aggregate, or better yet have a single source for their data (a la DataPortability.org
and my posting previously
) and then allow me to further aggregate all of that single information into a sole place I get it all. From RSS feeds, to friend updates, to instant messaging. The whole ball of wax as the saying goes. Lifestreaming
Lifestreaming is the first step in people trying to pull every facet of information they post, every profile they maintain, every instant message they send, every song they listen to, every favorite everything they make a list from and somehow put it into a clean interface. This in turn becomes an aggregation point for that single person, yet not for everyone else. You now need an aggregator tool on top of the lifestreaming to make it usable by any one person. Sure, if I had one friend, then this would solve it. But people are watching hundreds of Twitters, hundreds of blogs, hundreds of newsfeeds and still trying to entertain themselves on the Internet. Have you seen one yet that accurately also gets all my IM's across all the networks added in there? Not a chance. Does everyone use presence awareness coupled with location awareness? That means not only am I online and available, but where am I in the world (Plazes
So where does that leave you and I? Busy finding just the right mix of consolidating our daily Internet presence and finding sites that pull enough of our friends stuff, we keep up. Forget news feeds and any other meaningful site. The recent TWIT podcast stated this well, that we naturally crave for information and it is coming to us at a rate faster than we can absorb. All of us top line bloggers and Internet presence enthusiasts are blasting away, while many can't keep up with the river coming at them.
No single site is yet the golden ticket that gets us to see Willy Wonka. Wait, is he online right now to ask?
I came across the link to the blog posting by Nitin
on "Data Property Rights, Not Portability" referred by Chris Brogan. One little part from his posting:
...is not whether web app vendors "allow" me to take my data and go play elsewhere, but whether they "play fair" with my data when it's in the web app.
I agree overwhelmingly with this portion. However, he goes on to speak of exit and moving our data. I think that is too far out. Let me try.
I have an approach in my head, and it is one of the reasons I am part of the Data Portability working group. The ownership of data should always lay in the hands of the person, not the vendor. Here is the basis of my thought.
We spend far too much time populating profiles on numerous sites. Then along came the profile aggregators that I have reviewed
many times on this site. So they attempt to pull all your meta-data or APML or whatever form into one interface for people to follow.
So here is my theory:
- We should have one central, standardized, loose object (pics, videos, meta data, profiles, etc) storage facility
- It should be a blackbox data storage where everyone dumps their info
- Then vendors build frameworks around this same data store to pull data
- We authorize the vendors to access certain data parts as we see fit
- They all pick some centralized authentication mechanism like OpenID (don't scream it is an example)
- We then allow and disallow the who's and what's centrally
What is the added bonus for vendors? Well what they wrap it with and offer as services around my data. If I do not like what the vendor does with data or what services they offer, I don't spend time making another profile to find out. Or I do get involved and they change their path. No need to remove content I spent tons of time on, I simply remove their authorization and they cannot pull the data to make the interface for me any longer.
I know this simplifies things greatly, but we have to take a different approach then all the social network sites that pop up and try to be the next big thing. My data is the big thing and centralizing it is the mission.
As this and my other podcast are listed on iTunes and numerous other directories, some always ask what my Yahoo podcast link is. So I jumped over today to get the link and found this banner on the top of the page:
We apologize that we are shutting it down? That looks like a link to more information, but no it isn't. They just underlined it. One more strike for Yahoo in shrinking their value to users. 3600
bombed, Yahoo Mash I already talked about
and now another move to get people away form coming to their sites. What next?
was much more than I thought when I first read the specs on it. A tool to store stuff from your phone onto the server. Interesting. Sounds like a plan to start texting your friends like Twitter after they grab your address book. Well wait a second. You can not only store them, but assign another of the 100+ types of phones to your account and then sync back down? Whoa! All of the basic features for free, for now it says. Not such how they plan on making money if they don't have some sort of paid service coming up. Note what thought I had at the end of this posting
I looked up Blackberry and sure enough, 2 models (Pearl and 8700) were supported for mail, contacts and calendar. Here is what the site says in the description:
What is Zyb?
Zyb is an easy way to store your phone's contacts, pictures, text messages and calendar events online. ZYB also lets you connect with people you know and makes sure you always have their updated contact details on your phone. As most of your real life friends are already on your phone, ZYB gives some additional social features like photo tagging and content sharing with the people you know.
How Does ZYB work?
ZYB lets you sync your phone's contents, over-the-air, with our server and allows you to control it online. Each time you add or change data on your phone or on ZYB, and sync, your ZYB account is copied onto your phone and vice versa.
So let me give this a shot and try and out. This actually sounded like a new way to do moving data from one cell to another.
Apparently Sprite launched it's site over in China for cell phone users only. Now, they are opening it to the US. Sprite Yard
will be a cell phone access only social networking site.
Sprite Yard, to be introduced in the United States this month, will look a lot like the social networking sites that have become popular on the Internet. Consumers will be able to set up personal profiles, share photos and chat online with friends, all using cell phones rather than computer screens
I am not sure how much full blogging and profiling I would do through the nice tiny screens. Jaiku and Twitter are made for the SMS world until full mobile browsers get in the hands of everyone.
Before I get into block quoting the newsletter for you, let me make my peace. Half the items are things they didn't do. Nowhere does it address the outages. How can one complain about a free service? Really you can't. But the whining is all over the
Internet when they are down
. It does appear they are looking for more developers. I take this to mean making the code better and more features. But where is the listing for more infrastructure and architect positions? This is where many of the social netowrking teamsd fall flat. They build excellent products, but do not think bandwidth and scaling appropriately. Continue Reading here" Twitter sends a newsletter with all their 'changes' listed" »