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Archive for January, 2009

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Social Bookmarking seems to confuse new users…we want to save and share articles, websites, blogs and videos for future use or to share with friends and colleagues.

Here is how social bookmarking works!

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We all love Common Craft Videos….Simple Explanations in Plain English (made using wonderful stick figures).  Here is their explanation of Social Media.

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From Mashable

Dan Schawbel is the author of Me 2.0: Build a Powerful Brand to Achieve Career Success, and owner of the award winning Personal Branding Blog.

Brand monitoring has become an essential task for any individual or
corporation. Years ago, when people talked about our brands, it was
behind our backs and we almost never found out about it. Today, most of
these dialogues are right in front of our own eyes and the number of
locations where our brands may be cited is astronomical!

We must remember that conversations are being held on the web with
or without our consent. That means we can choose whether to be
observers, participants or outcasts. Before you select observer or
outcast, remember that these conversations can have a negative impact
on your brand. Also, when conversations start on the web, like a forest
fire, they travel very fast and wreak havoc along the way; what might
start out as a mere tweet, may turn into a blog post and then make
national news.

Here’s a basic reputation management system that I’ve been using, as
well as a list of the top 10 free tools you can start using today.


How to Begin


Depending on how popular and well-known your brand is, there may be
few or many people talking about it. If you’re looking to start a blog,
position yourself as an expert or start networking actively in your
desired topic area, then listening is an important research routine. As
you become more well-known, more conversations will be held around your
brand name, so you’ll spend more time listening and possibly responding
to blog posts, tweets, etc. If you’re a large and popular company, you
may need to hire someone to manage these monitoring tools daily.

The first thing you need to do is acquire a feed reader. I personally use Google reader because it’s easy to sort feeds, bookmark/favorite them and share (give value) them with your network.

I would also register for a Delicious account,
which can help you sort and organize blogs that mention your brand.
Think of Delicious as your own research and development plant. Once
you’ve set up these two accounts, the following tools will help you
locate articles that mention your brand, feed them right into your
central hub (Google reader) and allow you to manage them (Delicious).


1. Google


Google Alerts
are email updates of the latest relevant Google results based on your
choice of query or topic. You can subscribe to each alert through email
and RSS. The alerts track blog posts, news articles, videos and even
groups. Set a “comprehensive alert,” which will notify you of stories,
as they happen, for your name, your topic, and even your company. Yahoo! Pipes is also a good tool for aggregating and combining feeds into one central repository.


2. Blog Posts (more…)

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The Future of Web Apps: 7 Things Companies Must Do to Succeed

January 15, 2009 – 8:52 am PDT – by Monica OBrien 34 Comments

succeedMonica O’Brien writes about business and career advice at her blog, Twenty Set. You can also follow her on Twitter.

News Flash: Web 2.0 is so over, and nobody has made any money. Large social networking sites have yet to give brands a method of monetizing, and the tired business model of “get funded then get bought by Google” has been a bust for both the Googles and the startups (see Feedburner, YouTube, and DoubleClick).

So companies need to do something different, which means that we are on the frontier of a shift in online communication and activity. The first shift was when this little online bookstore called Amazon took over eCommerce, and the second shift was when a war between MySpace and Facebook became worthy of Wall Street Journal coverage.

The third shift is already starting to take place, and it’s likely that only the biggest companies (like Google and Facebook) are poised to make it, due to the resources web applications will soon require. Here is where the future of web applications is headed:


1. More automation


People are just plain tired of trying to keep up with social media. Or at least I am, and I work in social media! Web applications need to get more automated than they already are, and they need to do the obvious things I forget to do.

Like when I visit a website three times, I want my feed reader to automatically subscribe me to it. When I share posts, I want my feed reader to automatically publish those links to my Twitter account sporadically throughout the day, and a roundup of links to my blog every three days. When I comment on an article, I want my feed reader to automatically subscribe me to the comments.

As a former web software developer, I know this stuff isn’t difficult, so why aren’t companies doing enough of it?


2. Customized customizations


customizableMaybe you aren’t like me. Maybe you want to publish links from your feed reader to Twitter, but not to your blog. Maybe you want Twitter to get updated right when you share. Maybe you don’t care what anyone else has commented, you just want to share your opinion.

Companies: it takes simple if-then statements to manage these customizations and make everyone happy. It is so easy to create these settings; it baffles me why it isn’t done already. With the fast-paced creation of new web applications, your customers will find a solution to their unique problem. Make sure the solution comes from you.


(more…)

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Wired Magazine
By Michael Calore 12.30.08

Every year, we see scores of innovations trickle onto the web —
everything from new browser features to cool web apps to entire
programming languages. Some of these concepts just make us smile, then
we move on. Some completely blow our minds with their utility and
ingenuity — and become must-haves.

For this list, we’ve compiled the most truly life-altering nuggets
of brilliance to hit center stage in 2008: the ideas, products and
enhancements to the web experience so huge that they make us wonder how
we got along without them.

Nitpickers will notice that a couple of these technologies arrived
two or three years ago. Others aren’t even fully baked yet. But each
innovation on our list reached a level of maturity, hit the point of
critical mass, or stepped in to fill a burning need during 2008 that
resulted in it significantly changing the landscape of the web.

Here’s to the technologies currently making the web a better place than it was 12 months ago.

Identity Management

Few things carry more value than your digital identity, and yet most
web users have only a tenuous grasp of it. That’s because on the social
web, identity is no longer just who you are. It’s who you know, how you
know them and how much you want them to know about you. On the web,
your identity is explicitly tied to your relationships, both with your
friends and with the websites you visit.

Three great technologies came to fruition this year to help you manage these complex interdependencies: OpenID, Google Friend Connect and Facebook Connect.

These ID systems all offer a way to take control of your social
capital, that cache of “friend data” you carry with you as you sign up
for and use different web services. They also all offer a more tangible
advantage — an easy way to log in to any website using one set of
credentials. You get one virtual ID card that gives you access to
hundreds of websites. As a bonus, you don’t have to go through the
painful process of filling out a profile and adding or approving
friends on every new blog, community or social network you want to join.

The end of 2008 saw a flurry of activity around identity. Facebook
Connect, which currently lets you log in to a few dozen high-profile
websites using your Facebook ID, went live
the first week of December. Google’s Friend Connect and MySpace’s
MySpaceID, similar systems that aren’t yet as widely adopted, launched soon after it.

There’s a hitch, though. Facebook Connect, while elegant and easy to
use, is built on proprietary code and isn’t compatible with the
offerings from Google and MySpace, which are built using OpenID and
other open source standards.

We should expect this battle for your personal data play out over
the next year, maybe longer. But 2008 will be remembered as the year
that identity stepped into the spotlight.

HTML 5

One of the most important technologies on this list doesn’t fully
exist yet — HTML 5 — but in 2008, key features started to trickle out.

HTML 5
will eventually replace HTML 4.01, the dominant programming language
currently used to build web pages. But the governing bodies in charge
of the web are still drafting the details, and nobody expects HTML 5 to
fully emerge as the new standard for at least a few more years.

But HTML 5 is no vaporware. Many of the changes to the way the web
operates as outlined in early versions of the new specification are already being implemented
in the latest browsers, and some of the web’s more adventurous site
builders are already incorporating HTML 5’s magic into their pages.

HTML 5 will be great step forward, standardizing things like
dragging and dropping elements on web pages, in-line editing of text
and images on sites and new ways of drawing animations. There’s also
support for audio and video playback without plug-ins, a boon
for usability and a worrisome sign for Adobe’s Flash, Microsoft’s
Silverlight and Apple’s QuickTime. The language will also give a boost
to web apps, as there are new controls for storing web data offline on
your local machine.

Want Gmail on your desktop? HTML 5 makes it possible. Alas, the blink tag isn’t invited to the party.

Lifestreaming

A new breed of social app has arisen to help us manage the mess of information overload — the lifestream.

Not long ago, keeping track of your friends on the internet was
pretty easy. Everyone belonged to Friendster or MySpace and that was
it. Now, the web is littered with thousands of social sites, each with
its own special purpose — Flickr for photos, Last.fm for music, Twitter
for tweeting. Even the most rudimentary services are tied to the social
web. Renting a movie, buying a book or writing a blog post? Let all
your friends on Netflix, Amazon and Blogger know about it.

Keeping tabs on your friends now is all too easy and all too much, all at once.

Sites like FriendFeed, Plaxo Pulse and Digsby
serve as social-network-activity aggregators. They’re like virtual
funnels. Dump in all the notifications, feeds and updates from your
various networks, and the services will bring it all into one master
stream, relieving you of the responsibility of visiting a dozen or more
sites to learn what your friends are up to, what they’re listening to,
who they’re snogging and so on. Controls let you dial back the flow by
sorting and filtering the flow, pruning it down to only what matters
most.

Many such services have emerged, but FriendFeed, an elegant and simple site designed by a crew of ex-Googlers, is our favorite.

Oh, and don’t expect to be able to add Facebook to your lifestream.
The network lets all sorts of data in, but precious little out.

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