Sunday, November 23, 2008

Digital newsagents the way forward for b2b?

There have been recent moves by WH Smith and now Asda to launch online "newsagents" - online stores offering digital editions of magazines on subscription. Is this a way for the b2b magazines which been squeezed out of retail outlets in recent years, to get back onto a general retail platform? Or is the digital magazine itself only an irrelevant way-station on the road from paper to the web? What do you think?

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Monday, November 17, 2008

The case for the Euro

Will Hutton  in The Observer raised the (taboo) question over the weekend of Britain's adoption of the euro. The debate seems to have dropped right off the political radar, but Hutton thinks now is the time to refocus on the issue:

It might be politically toxic - but we must join the euro now.

He argues that there are only three fully convertible currencies in the world right now - the dollar, euro and yen - and that joining the Euro now is right thing to do.

The best time to begin negotiations is now, rather than in the middle of an economic rout.

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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Google change of heart

Computer Weekly reports that Google has quietly dropped Sun's Star Office productivity app from Google Pack - its suite of bundled software. Does this presage a marketing push for its own rapidly developing Google Apps? Time will tell...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

LinkedIn journalists

LinkedIn, the hyperactive social network for business, has just added a feature targeting journalists.

Get the “in” side scoop. Find and research the people and information that will make the story.

says the strap-line; the site then goes on to explain how journalists can overcome some familiar "pain-points".

Monday, November 10, 2008

The world according to Schmidt

McKinsey Quarterly has an insightful multi-media interview with Google's Eric Schmidt where he talks about changing competition, the long tail, making money, evolving management, the nature of innovation and the political challenges to the global internet. Well worth a watch.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Another milestone for Flickr

My favourite photo-sharing site Flickr just reached another milestone - according to Techcrunch they just passed the three billion photo mark! Not bad for a site that launched in 2004. Still, they trail Facebook which now has an incredible 10 billion.

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Android fillip for Telegraph

According to a piece in Mobile Industry Review 5,000 people have downloaded the Telegraph's new Android app. I was up at the Telegraph as a guest of CIO Paul Cheesbrough last month and he told me that the Telegraph was going to be the first content provider to produce an such an app. Great to see the innovation rewarded by so many downloads.

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Riding out the downturn, Silicon Valley Style

Techcrunch has managed to get hold of the PowerPoint pep talk Sequoia Capital gave the start-ups it had invested in. You can flick through the doom-laden deck here. The main thing seems to be: cut costs; get more capital if you can; sell out to anyone who will buy you quickly.

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Saturday, November 08, 2008

The world according to Meeker

(Via Techcrunch) Legendary internet analyst Mary Meeker used her slot at O'Reilly's Web 2.0 Summit to whizz through her views on the outlook for the tech industry in the impending downturn. Not too many answers but a hell of a lot of data, which I'm sure will make it's way into many presentations over the coming gloomy months.

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Thursday, November 06, 2008

Walk of shame

Malcolm Coles has a great list of some high profile sites who don't play fair with links - either by using the "no follow" tag indiscriminately, or by badly designed or convoluted internal redirects. Names like BBC, YouTube and MySpace are probably a bit of a surprise; Wikipedia is famous for it's no-follow policy.

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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

US election online

This US election will be the most online, real-time election in history, without a doubt. There's a Flickr show with pictures tagged with "election08", countless blogs and all the online news sources, of course. But perhaps the most interesting example of the new social technologies at work is Twitter. You can see a stream of people voting on Twitter search and the tag #votereport has been used to allow citizens to report on conditions on the ground at the polling station. If there are irregularities in voting in any parts of the country, I wouldn't mind betting it will be Twitter blowing the whistle.

Replacing the newspaper

Jeff Jarvis is following up from his New Business Models for News Summit at CUNY with a thoughtful post outlining the way forward for local news organisations. It sets out the framework very well, I think. The comments add some real insight, too, so do read it...

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Salesforce links with Amazon and Facebook

Salesforce, the software-as-a-service customer relationship management platform, has announced integration with both the Facebook platform and Amazon's on-demand cloud computing services, reports MacWorld.

The Facebook development will allows developers on the "Force" platform to build applications which operate within Facebook. An example might be a recruiting app which allows Facebook users to recruit from among their social network.

The connection with Amazon is particularly interesting, though, as it apparently makes Amazon's on-demand storage and computing available from within the Force platform. One of the criticisms I've heard of Force is that it's data storage costs are relatively high, so giving access to Amazon's cloud should be a welcome development.

Monday, November 03, 2008

APIs galore

Techcrunch has some interesting charts showing the development of web APIs, based on the sterling work done by ProgrammableWeb, has been tracking the development of APIs for over three years. The total tracked has now climbed to over 1,000, which shows just how mainstream the mash-up is becoming. The ProgrammableWeb site is a great resource for those looking for functionality to plug in.

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