Awesome Google I/O Project Glass Demo

This was definitely a great product demo! A jump from a Zeppelin, mt. biking across a roof top with a jump, repelling down a building and mt. biking to the stage.  There was so much that could have gone wrong, but it went quite smoothly. Great work Sergey!

Do you think you’ll buy Google Glasses?

Hootsuite iPhone App Fails “Revokes” Access to Facebook and Twitter Accounts

Hootsuite recently changed their service plans and created a pro account. Since I use the application to manage client accounts. I decided to go Pro. One of the great features is the ability to sync accounts and streams with my iPhone. A couple of days ago they released a new update for their iPhone app. That’s where everything went terribly wrong. It started for me yesterday when I tried to check my Twitter account via the Hootsuite App on my iPhone.

When I started the app, as normal it started an update and attempted to refresh my streams. I soon received a message. That all accounts have been “revoked”. The App keeps crashing and is not syncing with the online version, etc. It has been over 24 hours since I realized there was a problem with mine. Other people are talking about it on Twitter, Facebook and the app store, but there doesn’t seem to be any response from Hootsuite at all.

Hootsuite, is no one monitoring any of your accounts? I understand it’s the weekend, but the lack of response is making you look really bad. Hopefully this will be resolved soon.

I’ll post updates here when I hear anything new.

Email is Dead… At Least According to Facebook

Facebook came out with it’s next step towards internet domination. With it’s new email or not email or social email platform, or whatever you want to call it. It all sounds very wavesque to me.

It sounds great. One place to go for all communication.
Facebook Logo IM, Facebook chat, SMS and yes, email. They don’t include Twitter, which I’m sure was by design. There are also a few things that aren’t very clear, and if you watched the announcement yesterday, you were probably left with more questions then answers. Here’s a few of the things that come to mind.

Zuckerberg and Bosworth discussed how you can have conversations with the people across multiple platforms, but even in the Q&A they didn’t really explain how it would be decided on which platform you message would be sent. It sure seemed like they were saying that Facebook would decide for you. But how?

Another thing is if I have contacts that I only communicate with via email, or phone or whatever. How much of my info. will they get? Will everyone be or have to be connected via Facebook friends? Will they be able to send messages to me on IM or SMS? Can I control that?

The big question, which nobody directly asked and Zuckerberg avoided is, what is happening with all my data? I.E. contact info. content of messages, contacts. Is Facebook going to mine this data. My guess is yes. So the next question, who are they going to share it with?

Is it an email killer? I doubt it. Yes it’s true that people are using IM, texting, Facebooking, etc. a lot more now. It is also true that many people, particularly the younger generation view email as cumbersome and slow, but I don’t think the Facebook option will replace corporate email anytime soon.

Facebook continues to find new ways to integrate the rest of our lives into the Facebook platform. Open graph brings data from around the internet back to Facebook and shares it with your friends as well as third parties. The new communication system will surely do the same.

What do you think? For now the service is invite only, will you use the new service? Do you see privacy issues? Let us know.

Watch the video of the press release below.

The Residential Phone Book Goes the Way of the Dodo Bird

It looks like the telephone companies have finally seen the writing on the wall… or online. The old “reach out and touch someone,” certainly isn’t happening through the whitepages anymore.

Dodo birdIn the past month alone, New York, Florida and Pennsylvania approved Verizon Communications Inc.’s request to quit distributing residential white pages and regulators are giving the approval for them to do so. Since 2007, states that have given the go ahead to stop quit printing whitepages or that have requests pending: Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and Wisconsin.

“Anybody who doesn’t have access to some kind of online way to look things up now is probably too old to be able to read the print in the white pages anyway,” joked Robert Thompson, a pop culture professor at Syracuse University.

Even Link Hoewing from Verizon understands;

“You probably have a better chance of finding a name quicker if you can just search for it in a database than try to look it up in the white pages.”

He’s also Verizon’s vice president of Internet and technology policy.

The phone companies argue that most people use the internet to find people. I think they’re right. Quotes from AP Article

After posing the question “When was the last time you used the yellow pages?” on Twitter, here are some of the responses I received:

@AdamChlan: over 5 years. mine goes directly from my front porch to the trash.
@Amyschnabi: Other than to prop things up?
@beckami: we take ours camping. Phonebooks make excellent kindling.
@Kmueller62: what’s interesting is the yellow pages are now focusing on their online version. I’m LESS likely to use that than the real thing

You can opt out of receiving the residential phone book. YellowPages Opt Out Thanks @AdamChlan for the link.

I also agree with KMueller62. When I search for something I want to see the result. I don’t want to have to go to another site where I have to search again or click through something else before I get my result.

Google also has phone number look up built into their search engine. Just type in one of the following before the name you are searching for:

bphonebook: search business listing
rphonebook: search residential listings
phonebook: search all phone listings

I really believe that the paper phone book is dead and the paper yellowpages is on it’s way out too. What do you think?

Do you need help transitioning your company from using the yellow pages to getting found online? We can help! Get a Free Quote

The Broadcast Industry: Is Their Catalyst Model Drying Up?

Broadcast Cable companiesThe cable industry has one of the best Catalyst Business Models out there. Is it finally drying up?

I’ve written about the book Catalyst Code before. It’s about how companies, like Visa, Amazon, Google and cable companies, have tapped into a catalyst model for their businesses and created thriving businesses.

The way it works is you create a platform or service that sites between two parts that want to do business with each other but may need a way or a more efficient way to do it. It’s like chemistry, water is the enables many chemical reactions to occur. So, the company becomes the catalyst for the two groups to do business.

The broadcast companies have been using this model for years and having great success. Essentially you have the people that want to watch TV on one side and the advertisers that want to reach the people that watch TV on the other. Both paying for their service.

Then came a long this thing called the interwebs and people were able to watch TV shows whenever and where ever they wanted. YouTube created big problems for the cable companies because anyone could upload recorded shows. The cable companies managed to fight off this advance, and sites like Hulu, Joost, and Veoh were created. Plus, more underground sites, such as Megavideo and Yidio sprung up.

The cable and TV Networks continued to work with Hulu because they were able to use advertisements when their shows were viewed on the Hulu platform. Slowly the networks such as NBC and the ComedyChannel started moving their videos back to their own sites where they controlled the whole experience and Hulu added a subscription service. (The service hasn’t taken off yet and they are supposedly lowering the price if they haven’t already.)

Now here’s the real kicker. I think the cable companies and networks really started getting worried when people (myself included) started dropping their cable subscriptions. Technology has made it so much easier to watch shows online that many people have decided that it was a waste of money to pay hundreds of dollars a year when they could watch it online more conveniently and for free!

So, what are the cable companies and networks doing? They are pulling back their shows and not showing them online.

“Broadcasters took a big step toward eliminating free TV shows on the Web after they blocked access to their programming online this month to enforce their demands to be paid.” *

This sound very similar don’t you think? First we had disruption in the music industry with Napster. The newspaper industry is on life support because you can find your news online for free. Murdoch blames Google for this one. Now the broadcast industry is taking their ball and going home.

In the end the networks and cable/broadcast companies are going to be in real trouble if they can’t figure out how to adapt to the internet world. People are tired of paying high prices for something that they can get for free elsewhere, and the more false barriers they put up to stop people from watching what they want will come back to haunt them. After all, you can find just about anything somewhere online if you know how to look.

* Quote from: Online TV spats mean fewer free shows on Web

Net neutrality: New Talks With the FCC, Google and Verizon

hares fighting obout net neutrality Net neutrality is very controversial pitting broadband providers against internet companies. The providers claim they are paying billions of dollars for networks that internet companies make money from and they should be able to control and charge fees for the type of data that travels over their networks.

I strongly believe in net neutrality. It is what the internet was build on and it should be looked at like a utility. The electric company doesn’t charge you more if you want to plug in a machine they didn’t make. The water company doesn’t charge you a different price depending on what you do with the water. The phone company doesn’t charge you various prices based on the language or words you use when you talk on the phone. You pay for their service/connection.

What do you think? Should broadband providers be allowed to regulate traffic?
Or should net neutrality prevail?

Read more about Net Neutrality: Source: Google, Verizon near net neutrality plan

Cable and Phone Companies Crying Like Babies.. Again

Just read an article put out by the associated press. “Summary Box: Broadband funds draw complaints

“THE COMPLAINTS: Some phone and cable companies complain that the money is sometimes being used to fund networks that will compete with services they already offer.”

So, the phone and cable companies complain that other company’s are using their networks to make money and they should be allowed to filter this traffic the way they see fit. Their argument is that they are building expensive networks and others are making money on their networks while they alone carry the burden of building and supporting the networks. But, really, this is a way they can filter out and kill their competition. Then they receive money from the government to support their “expensive networks”, but that’s not enough. Now they are whining that the money is creating competition for them. This just has the stink of monopoly all over it. Especially since many of the companies have regional monopolies or near monopolies.

Related articles:
Comcast vs. Net Neutrality: Why is Comcast So Scared?
Net Neutrality Takes a Blow
Net Neutrality — A Letter to US Senator Arlen Specter

Net Neutrality Takes a Blow

I just read an article about FCC’s battle for net neutrality. FCC loses key ruling on Internet `neutrality’
After reading the article, I’m again frustrated that so many people (apparently including some judges) don’t understand the severity of the issue.

Tuesday’s unanimous ruling by the three-judge panel was a setback for the FCC because it questioned the agency’s authority to regulate broadband. That could cause problems beyond the FCC’s effort to adopt official net neutrality regulations.

It baffles me that they don’t understand that the FCC is pushing an open system. The large ISPs are only looking out for themselves and instead of innovating they are trying to block other companies that have proven to be more innovative then they are. It’s like the kid on the playground that doesn’t get his way and says “I’m taking my ball and going home, so no one else can play.”

I’ve written about this a number of times. Below is my comment on the recent article. Plus check out these links for other posts on the subject:
Comcast vs. Net Neutrality: Why is Comcast So Scared?
Net Neutrality: A Letter to US Senator Arlen Specter

Comment:

It’s amazing to me to see how many people don’t understand what Net neutrality really is about. Comcast, Verizon and other ISPs want to be allowed to decide what types of data can travel over their networks. That’s would be like Ford saying well we helped build this road so we are only going to allow Fords to travel on it. Or the electric company saying you’re using our wires to power products that were built by some company we don’t like. Sorry you electric might work today.. maybe not though. Or the water company saying you’re using a Brita filter. Ok, then your water pressure is going to be a trickle. I could on, but what it really does is allows the ISPs to crush their competition. Let’s look at VOIP (voice over internet protocal) services or internet phones as an example. Where I am, I basically have two choices. Comcast or Verizon. Both companies offer VOIP. So if they were allowed to decide the speed and what data is allowed to travel across their networks they could crush companies like Vonage, or even Skype. Giving them an unfair advantage because they “own the pipes” Do you remember what phone prices were before Vonage and Skype? One of their biggest complaints is Google. First of all do you think Google is running off a dial up or pirated internet connection. You better believe they are paying to get into the network. Furthermore, look at all the free stuff they give away, and does anyone at Comcast. Or maybe they want to slow down Google’s data because they a deal with Yahoo for their search.

Bottom line allowing the ISPs to filter data on their networks is bad for everyone. Wake up people. The FCC is trying to help consumers. Stand up and let them know that you don’t want to be told what you can and can’t access online. The link below is to a letter I sent to my state senator Arlen Specter. After seeing this ruling I’m planning on sending it again. Here’s a quote from my letter:

“I commend the FCC for taking a stand with Comcast. Comcast is a huge business that in most areas operates almost as a monopoly, yet they continue to cry that their infrastructure is being unfairly used. They claim that companies and people are getting a free ride on their pipeline. I always get a kick out of how they try to justify the policy of slowing down different types of traffic just because that type is popular. One example is Google. They talked about implementing a way to slow traffic to companies such as Google and then charging them a higher fee so that the traffic will run at normal speeds. That sounds like a form of racketeering, which is not unlike what the mob does when they force people to pay for protection. ‘Protection from what?’, you ask. In actuality the money being paid is to protect the victims from the mob itself. “

Comcast vs. Net Neutrality: Why is Comcast So Scared?

Regional monopoly, continued increase in earnings, plus Bailout money from not enough for Comcast. I just read an article about how Comcast is continuing to fight the FCC on net neutrality and every time I hear about this it bugs me. Here’s an excerpt from the article:

In hearing a legal dispute between the agency and Comcast Corp., a three-judge federal appeals court panel questioned the commission’s authority to impose so-called “net neutrality” obligations on the nation’s largest cable TV and Internet operator. Those rules are intended to prevent broadband providers from abusing their control over the market for high-speed Internet access.

(full article:Comcast, FCC take net neutrality dispute to court)

In my opinion Comcast as well as other broadband providers have a very weak argument that they are “pouring billions of dollars into their networks, and they should be able to offer premium services to differentiate themselves from competitors and earn a healthy return on their investments.” In the example of Comcast, in many places they have a monopoly on cable TV and they continue to see increases in earnings as well. Plus, they also received bailout money from the government!

The real issue here is they are scared and unable to adapt to new technologies and companies that are taking their business. Their business model is being threatened and maybe it’s a lack of creativity, but they are trying to use their clout and dollars to force the government to let them run wild. If they are allowed to filter traffic as they please they can cut off any business that operates over the internet. A couple of major markets that they could cripple is legal online video streaming and VOIP.

You can see Comcast’s earning reports on their site: Earnings and Investor News

An example of the real threat to cable TV. I recently canceled my cable TV because I can watch everything I want to watch online through such legal portals as Hulu.com.

Back in August 2008, I sent a letter to PA Senator Arlen Specter about the importance of Net Neutrality: Net Neutrality — A Letter to US Senator Arlen Specter. Please, reach out to your senators and reps in congress and tell them that you don’t want your broadband provider to tell you what you can and can’t do online! Also check out the site www.savetheinternet.com to find out how you can help.

Remember When You Were a Kid? Entrepreneurs Do!

Do you remember the hope and faith that you could accomplish anything that you when you were a kid? Entrepreneurs do! Entrepreneurs around the world are using this attitude to tackle some of the worlds biggest problems.

Grasshoper.com created this great inspirational Viral Video which reminds us that we still have the potential to change the world. They offer services to help you stay in contact and reach the world. Check out the video below: