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Xumii Blog is Born

Seconds after birth Originally uploaded by dhgoodman I just started working with Xumii and as a part of it, we launched their blog this morning. Very exciting. Why is it exciting? Well, it’s certainly not my first. I’m estimating that I’ve started more than 50 blogs in my life. Blogs are easier to prepare than hot breakfasts thanks to great tools like WordPress. But as opposed to hot breakfasts, blogs have life. They grow, they evolve, they meander. They intersect different people’s and company’s lives and they are the time capsule. (One of my first blog posts from 2003) So I always get a little excited with a new blog. Where is going to go? What is it going to look like in 5 years? Will it have a personality all it’s own? Funnily enough, today I ran into a guy that helped me build a content management system back in 1998. It had parent child relationships and we eventually opened it up for multiple authors to write news publicly. It was basically a blogging platform, but we didn’t know it at the time. We (stupidly) thought it was a news story writer and when we stopped doing news, we let it go. I love what blogs have brought to […]

App Review: Social Median

Saw an invite for

AppRev4: Slice The Pie

(New screencast software+Viddler makes a better application review!) Video review of Slice the Pie. An app where you can participate in the music industry. I only tested one part, but I made 3 pence (UK) which was great.   Verdict: Slice of the Pie 6/10   Actually the UK Pounds thing is probably a mistake. US Dollars is still the central currency, but maybe they are going to roll out other sites for each geography. Otherwise, I think it could be a good business if the Gen Y’ers and music lovers get on board. Next step – building a base.

AppRev3: Quamut

Barnes and Noble have launched a “how-to” application called Quamut. (Video review has been removed until I can find a better screencast app…) First thing to note is that I’m not sure how to pronounce the name. Not a great start. Then they have a clever but equally mystifying tag line (which appears to be trademarked) – “The Go-To How To”. They must have missed the simplicity memo. The biggest mistake they make is assuming that everyone will get what it is. And they needed to. It presents like a portal from the late 90’s and even when you click through the information is not exactly structured in a clear way. It looks like they have hedged their bets between an information source and a online version of Dummies guides. I also didn’t think their search was that great. Just a headline and the text in the page. ‘How-To’ is a big subject area and I need to find stuff quickly or else I’m out of there. You compete against Wikipedia and just emailing all my friends. Nothing to blog/write home about.

AppRev2: Restyleme

Quick review of Hot or Not extension Restyleme (via Killerstartups). Basically you upload a picture and people give you the thumbs up or thumbs down across a range of categories like hair, accessories and smile. So it’s not saving the planet, but it is a little bit of fun and you might get some honest advice about those jeans you’ve been wearing for 3 years. Simple application with quick pick up and easy concept. They had a couple of usability issues around mystery meat links and also some confusing terms. Plus they yelled pretty loudly that I needed to login but didn’t give me an option to do it or to join. Social elements are pretty weak. A sign of all web apps these days thinking they should have social. Actually, this would work amazingly as a Facebook app. Dump a Facebook picture in and my friends can rate it. On the monetization side, they do have some reasonable advertising options by upselling you the things that people tell you need some work. They may also get into dating like Hot or Not did. 1 Minute Video Review of (takes a minute to load, and doesn’t fit quite well, I’m working on it…)

AppRev1: Digital Footprint Calculator

I’m going to start trying to do an application review each day. I found a cool way I can use Skitch and Jing to put myself in the video and still make it a quick screencast. Here is my first one; EMC Digital Footprint Calculator Screencast¬† – (warning, old screencasts app used, so it’s a bit ugly…) EMC Digital Footprint Calculator Website (video size isn’t quite right yet, but I’m getting there. Plus, this one is less a review, more a walk through, but it’s a start)

Workshop: How To Use Web 2.0 Tools

charade #16 answer Originally uploaded by ndrwfgg (Note: If you are one of my really geeky friends, you can probably click away, but you’re friends might be interested.) Recently I did a workshop for Government people who wanted to know the basics about web 2.0 applications (blogs, micro, wiki’s, etc). It was good fun and there was lots of interest. Some of the attendees said that they’d try and have a go at using the tools, but were still a bit unsure. So with the Slattery IT group, I’ve put together a workshop on how to use the various web 2.0 applications and tools. A small group of 5-10 people, in a nice, friendly computer classroom. We’ll slowly walk through all the applications and give you a real, hands on experience. You’ll setup and use; * A blog. * A wiki. * Twitter for micro blogging. * LinkedIn for business networking. * Facebook for social networking and it’s “advanced” features. * Forums. * Photo sharing. You might want to do this because: * You want to see what the fuss is about. * You need to use the tools at work. * You want to use the tools at home. * You need to recruit Generation Y people. If you’re […]

The Fuss About Friend Feed & Video Review

There is a big of buzz around FriendFeed right now and lots of people as asking why. I did a quick video review of FriendFeed here if you want to see what it’s about. Follow Mick Liubinskas on FriendFeed here.¬† Basically it let’s you aggregate your the feeds of different applications and networks and show them in one stream. So I can see my Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and YouTube all together. You can also add friends and see what they are talking about, and have a stream of all your friends feeds. Hence, Friendfeed. It’s picking up pace, but I’m curious to see whether this will become something people visit once and don’t come back, visit occasionally, or use regularly? Also, do you want it all in one place, or do you prefer to be able to roam around and have different ‘tastes’ depending on your mood? Let me know your thoughts.

Commoncraft of Twitter: Beauty

I just saw the Commoncraft video of Twitter in plain English as shown below. It’s beautiful in so many ways. Firstly, it’s just a pleasure to watch. It’s fun and light and easy. Secondly, it tells the story to the point and with a lovely light layer of interestingness (Van Halen Rawks!). Thirdly, Twitter was able to be told like a skit with plain English and little cartoons. This says so much about your application. If you can’t get someone interested in it in 30 seconds and understanding it in 2 minutes, then go back, cut it in half and try again. Please reread this last point. Tragically, that last point is something I know is true but know is hard. And it gets harder as you go along. Without further ado, here is the Beauty;

AllTop is RSS for Masses

I disagree with Mike from TechCrunch’s conclusion that Guy Kawasaki’s AllTop is lame. RSS is still only known and used by the geeks and the time is coming where the average netizen wants to read more stuff they are interested in. Right now they go to a few news sites and maybe search to find blogs, but would never bookmark them, let alone subscribe to the RSS. AllTop picks a bunch of subject and then gives you the most recent five stories from the top bloggers on that area. You can mouse over to get an OK abstract of the story. Here is a quick video review; (Sorry about size, I’m using and Jing and the resizing is eluding me right now) Why do I think it’s got a chance? Because I can see my wife and even my dad using it. They are now both looking for stuff to read and are ready to venture outside of the news sits they know, but they are not quite sure where to start. The big challenge is how do you reach them? You’re not going to do it via search engines because you’re too broad. You could try and advertise on the newspapers but I’m pretty sure they’d reject you. […]