Everybody loves links, so here are my links of the (last few) weeks. As usual, newer links are on top.
Me: Here’s an early look at some stunningly-beautiful apps created using WPF and Silverlight together with Facebook’s OpenStreams API. My favorite app is the Facebook Photo Cloud. Check it out!
Me: An interesting new Forrester report on the five eras of the social web. Too bad it’s not a free report, and you can only get a summarized version here.
Money Quote: One thing I notice: there’s no technological substitute for some old-fashioned realities of public safety. Vine offers a handy wallet-sized card, to print out and clip – yes kids, it’s an actual physical artifact! And I spy with my little eye a reassuring caveat in the fine print on every page of the Vine demo, down there with the legal notice: “In case of an emergency dial 911.”
Me: The next time you decide not to finish your food, please remember this video.
Money Quote: Those who download “free” music from P2P networks are more likely to spend money on legit downloads than those who are squeaky clean, according to a new report out of Norway. The music labels, however, aren’t quite buying that data.
Me: Yet another brilliant comic from xkcd. Usual masterful blend of geekery and humor in daily life.
Money Quote: The defense put it to the judge that he had folded under intense political pressure. The judge denied this stating that the court made its decision based on the case presented.
Money Quote: Everyone knows that print newspapers are our generation’s horse-and-buggy; in the most wired cities, they’ve been pummeled by competition from the Web. But it might surprise you to learn that one of the largest and most-celebrated new-media ventures is burning through cash at a rate that makes newspapers look like wise investments.
Charles Barkley (paraphrased): Twitter users are a bunch of losers.
Me: Right… what about compulsive gamblers and people busted for DUI because they can’t wait to receive oral sex?
Money Quote: The Internet echo chamber, which is conditioned to run at the speed of Twitter, assumes that any tech product is a failure if it doesn’t achieve world domination in 30 days or less. Businesses, especially large enterprises, move at much more deliberate speeds. I’ve written about Windows adoption rates before (and in fact drew the data for XP adoption rates from that earlier post). Businesses need a year or so after a new Windows version is released to test their in-house software for compatibility and to plan a thoughtful migration strategy. When nearly half of IT pros in large businesses say they are willing to begin migrating to Windows 7 within months of its release, that is a profound indicator of its potential for success.
Money Quote: If web 2.0 was all about democratizing publishing, then the next stage of the web may well be based on democratizing data mining of all that content that’s getting published.
Money Quote: Implementing a social media marketing program without optimizing content is leaving money on the table. Useful social content (blog, video, images, audio) that cannot be discovered via search is a lost opportunity to reach an audience that is looking.
Me: I agree that Google Reader is a fantastic product and a wonderful piece of software engineering. So it’s not all that surprising to me that Google Reader is the leading news reader today.
DeepZoomPix enables you to explore and share photos in a new and interactive way.
The Microsoft Translator web page widget allows you to bring real-time, in-place translations to your web site. Users can see your pages in their own language, without having to go to a separate translation web site, and share your page with friends in multiple languages.
Money Quote: So yes, absurd as it may sound, fighting over whitespace characters and other seemingly trivial issues of code layout is actually justified. Within reason of course — when done openly, in a fair and concensus building way, and without stabbing your teammates in the face along the way.
Choose tabs, choose spaces, choose whatever layout conventions make sense to you and your team. It doesn’t actually matter which coding styles you pick. What does matter is that you, and everyone else on your team, sticks with those conventions and uses them consistently.
That said, only a moron would use tabs to format their code.
Me: What is interesting to me is that the New York Times is *supposed* to be from a backwards, old-school industry that doesn’t really understand online and social media. Well, apparently, this old-school company also happen to be one of the most progressive in the web space in opening up their content and data to new business models.
Money Quote: In the past, we have advocated for a hybrid solution to cloud computing. It is perfectly okay and reasonable (even expected!) for companies to leverage the cloud. Economically, it allows them to go crazy at building the business and focusing resources. In a down economy, the economics behind the Cloud over physical hardware is a no-brainer. However, we continue to advocate for a failover plan that will help an agile company dodge the effects of downtime. A hybrid environment is also attractive as well, allowing companies to directly manage and control critical operational systems and benefit from the infinite possibilities of scale.
Me: I think the Googlers just have too much free time on their hands…
Money Quote: There’s a common saying: build your site for visitors, not for search engines. A famous Google webmaster guideline asks the question: “Does this help my users? Would I do this if search engines didn’t exist?” It’s actually quite a challenge: Pretend search engines don’t exist. How can you grow your website, get visitors and make lots of money?
Me: This is just ingenious. And cute. You get to learn about AI, human psychology, robotics, the uncanny valley – all in the same article. A must read.
Money Quote: Several sites, however, are now looking to snatch their traffic back from Google by letting consumers easily execute searches from and curate content on the fly, all from the address bar. Three such sites include AOL’s newly relaunched Love.com, ESPN and IceRocket. The goal is to make it easy to search from the address bar by tacking on a word to the domain.
Money Quote: To promote the premiere of “Deadliest Catch” tomorrow night, Discovery will take over MSN.com, MSNBC and Fox Sports, the first time those sites have devoted so much space to a single advertiser.
I may leave out certain links from my feed if I feel the stories have already been covered ad nauseam this week.