Monthly Archive for June, 2006

Social Networking Differentiator

Greg Narain has an interesting article on his blog concerning Social Networking sites. In it he talks about the crop of current socail networking sites and what will be the difference between the survivors and the vanquished…

“But something deeper inside the wave is forming beyond social networking infused products multiplying like mice.Some of this gelled for me during a meeting with Fred Krueger and Evan Rifkin of TagWorld. The startup is building a comprehensive communications and media platform, not just a social networking site with profiles, buddy lists and
photo sharing. Krueger says his goal is to allow users to easily build complex Web sites with sharing and a social network as the underlying fabric.The so-called architecture of participation is slowly gestating in the bellies of hundreds of startups and established players, and the social Web, made by humans for humans, is taking shape on top of the grid. Sharing and collaboration is not an afterthought bolted onto email or deployed in a separate server for workflow.” – Dan Farber

Continue reading ‘Social Networking Differentiator’

Apollo screenshots

The transparency is nice and the travel app looks thorough, but what I really want to know is whether we can skin up iTunes and tap into the machine’s graphics card ;o)

Apollo screenshots


Threadless – great T-shirts… Continue reading ‘Threadless…’

Ambient audio contextual content

When something sounds sinister it usually is sinister.

Everyone’s favourite search engine has come up with a way of picking up the ambient sound in the location where you’re surfing the net and return contextual advertising. Essentially, this is shazam but on a much bigger scale.

If you’re not familiar, shazam offers a service whereby you call a number and place the phone next to some music you’re listening to. It then sends you a text message, normally within seconds, detailing the artist and song title of the track you played it.

Google has come up with a way to do this for ambient sound, stuff like the TV playing in the background etc. Imagine you’re watching TwentyFour whilst your other half is surfing on the net. More than likely she’ll see ads offering her a special price on the DVD Box set of the previous season.

I’m not going to bother getting into the privacy implications becasue they’re just too damn obvious, but contextual advertising that’s that quick is frightening and shows how much of a threat that cutesy, cuddly search engine will be in the future – persoanlly it gives me the creeps.

Videoblogs – channels of the future

Heard of Robert Scoble? No, I hadn’t either until yesterday. He was a Microsoft employee who was responsible for much of the positive press around Microsoft. Through his blog he managed to carve a human face for Microsoft and did much to get people to take a new look at the long hated company.

He has now resigned and gone to work for Heard of them? No I hadn’t either (do you see a theme forming??). is a site which, until recently, was run by a husband & wife team in their spare time. I say recently because they’ve both just quit their jobs in order to dedicate all their time to podcasting/videocasting because they’re raking in $85,000 a week in advertising revenue.

Now just off the bat, that’s alot of money to be making, and it’s clearly not sustainable, but it does emphasis what I’m seeing more and more with the clients I work with. There is a clear shift away from traditional media advertising towards niche markets where advertiser’s money can be shown to have a greater effect and increase sales. Obvious, I know, but a tipping point which creates bubbles…

Continous Integration in Flex 2

Continous Integration in Flex 2
This ain’t something I’m going to try until Flex launches properly – I’ve already gone to hell and back with all the class path ‘tweaks’ Adobe keep implementing into their builds. Having said that, for the project I’m currently working on the ability to cut daily builds would have been a lifesaver and I’m caught in fire fight as a result of not being able to implement something like this in Flash using ARP.

For the first time I understand why you’d bother investing time in ANT. Until now the whole thing just seemed like overkill on so many different levels. Fitting Flash into a large scale production flow has become a necessity and this solution goes a long way to providing a means for Flex to fit into the production flow most Technologists are used to. It also highlights the key differences between Flex and Flash…sure you can build anything in Flash that you can in Flex – until it comes to enterprise level applications, then it’s just pain….unadulterated pain.

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