I’ve seen a lot of mashups in the past couple of years, but the Google Maps, Twitter, and Twittervision thing is one of the greatest I’ve seen. Not only does it seem to work very well – but the mix of live results and individual reactions is simply wonderful. And the presentation of the results (on the left of the screen) is a model of simple, clean, effective design. Not super-pretty, but more effective than all the bells and whistles generally seen at the Networks’ sites.
Archives for 2008
The big news this morning is that Microsoft has offered $44.6B to buy Yahoo, the figure representing a 62% premium on the share price at yesterday’s market close. It’s very unclear at this point what will come of this, but as a user I find it hard to see how such a tie-up could be beneficial to me. From my perspective, although MS has done some interesting things on the net, none of their initiatives have been focused on delivering the best quality of user experience or even innovation – their plays have seemed to by cynically based on scaling up so-so experiences and hoping that the brute force of that scale can make them important. What we learn from Google, however, is that though scale is important, it is deeply related to quality and innovation in a way that consumer software never was.
Late last week Shel Israel wrote an An Open Letter to the Twitter Guys. He’s right on, and his post stands in stark contrast to the chatter a couple of weeks ago that Twitter proves that the only important thing is to aggregate users – leaving aside a biz plan for later.
No one seems to care about mobile Twitter (which seems insane to me), but my 250/week limit was reached in the early evening today – Tuesday. The limit is simply a cost-cutting measure by a company bleeding money on every tweet. The problem for Twitter is that I can easily defect – everyone I get messages from (more or less) is on Facebook, and I can subscribe to their status updates on my mobile – half the time they come from Twitter anyhow.
Part of the problem may be that US companies are backed by US VC – and so they focus primarily on US adoption and usage. The social networking world in general makes that a very dangerous position to take – social network adoption rates are generally lower in the US than most other “rich” countries. A company that is primarily concerned with US results for a US exit will throw the rest of us under the bus pretty quickly.
Standout Jobs is all about providing companies with advanced tools to use for recruiting. Companies can use Standout Jobs to easily build customized recruiting micro-sites to publicize their openings and provide a rich experience for prospective employees, enhancing their ability to land the best candidates. As well, their backend gives companies enhanced tools to get their job postings out to a variety of different job sites. (More information at Mashable).
I think Standout Jobs is going to do very well both at DEMO and with customers. It addresses a real pain point for small and medium size businesses and I am sure it will pay for itself after one or two good hires. Congratulations to the whole team!
Alec Saunders has written a great post about the increasing backlash Facebook App developers are facing recently: F8ce the music. I know for my part I have been drastically reducing my adds of Facebook apps and have removed and blocked ones that don’t offer me something fun or interesting in a way that I consider fair or ethical.
Alec also points out that in the dev forums, “suggestions that developers build useful or richer applications are scoffed at by those who view Facebook as solely an entertainment platform for college students.” In fact this may point to the most important problem with the app platform at this time. Developers with that attitude are completely missing the boat. They don’t understand Facebook, the value proposition that it represents, and are ignorant of the demographics of Facebook. The idea that Facebook is just or even primarily for college students is factually incorrect, and a developer who assumes that to be the case will and should fail.