Thursday, July 30, 2009

Myspace producing their own email service

TechCrunch is reporting that Myspace has it's own email service which will be integrated with users person Myspace page. I think this is a great idea because as reported Myspace has 130 million users which will convert as 130 million email users. Another major plus is that it will make Myspace more relevant in social networking. As I always preach, computer services are based on public perception, and changing that perception requires something drastic that will slingshot you into first place. Myspace mail could be great because your mail would let connect with your Myspace friends and your non-Myspace friends. Better yet, it could convert some non-Myspace users into new users. It's in beta testing now, so go ahead and take a peak

Source: http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/07/30/the-new-myspace-mail-quietly-emerges-as-a-big-time-email-competitor/
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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Microsoft and Yahoo Team Up

It's being reported that Microsoft and Yahoo are teaming up to try to take down Google's dominance of the search engine world. Google makes billions a year in advertising which all stems from those little boxes on the side of almost every web search that you do through Google. Yahoo, once the giant in web search is so far behind that they needed some sort of spark. As I've reported in the past, it's not necessarily the quality of the product, but the public perception. Bing will be powering Yahoo, and while I think Bing is great, it's going to take something more than this announcement to change people's habits of just typing in Google.com every time they want to do a search.

I have mentioned before that Google's biggest advantage to me is more than just a web search engine. They have the iGoogle page, the desktop app, a documents web page, a RSS reader. I can't tell you the last time I've even typed in Google.com in order to search for something. Google has made it where I can search for stuff on their site without ever going on their main site. If Microsoft or Yahoo want to be #1 they have to understand that the search engine is just a small part of the equation.

Some Information provided by: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/30/technology/companies/30soft.html?_r=1&hp
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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Firefox 4 Due Later This Year

Microsoft has Internet Explorer
Apple has Safari
Google has Chrome

Three computer giants. Three web browsers. When companies this huge with resources beyond our imaginations, it's hard to get motivated to compete, but Mozilla has been doing that for the last four years, and there is a lot of buzz building for their newest version of their Firefox web browser. Firefox 4 is rumored to be out later this year. Firefox boasts an open source experience which allows tons of customization.

While not much is known about the new version of Firefox, some screenshots show that they are taking a page from Chrome and they're really cleaning up their layout. Some people like a lot of buttons and gadgets on their web browser. Some people just want it really simple and not too cluttered. It's internet fung shui.Image:Mockup-4-0-Vista-(TabsTop)-(LocBarSearch).png

I'll report more information as it becomes available but you can already see how much simpler this browser looks compared to other ones on the market

Source: https://wiki.mozilla.org/Firefox/4.0_Windows_Theme_Mockups
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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Next Big Timekiller

Don't you hate when it's 1AM and instead of going to bed, you're searching the internet for fun things to do. Don't you hate when instead of doing fun things on the internet, you are looking and failing, thus making your night even more pointless. Let's be honest, procrastinating is a personality trait, so if you're going to procrastinate and waste time, you might as well enjoy it. StumbleUpon keeps that in mind by providing a random website based off a listing of your criteria. After making a username and giving all the appropriate information, you are then allowed to chose from a list of interests that will help decide which sites you are sent.

After that is taken care of the magic begins. All you do is just keep clicking on the "Stumble" button until you find something you like. It's a lot of fun. I found this really fun websites that allows you to create chords on a guitar and see how it would sound if you strum it. I also found a website that has a listing of free online books to read. That has to come in handy during these tough economic times.



Other features include a toolbar which I declined to download since I had the way they clutter your web browser. You can also share articles via email, make new friends or connect with current friends. This has some social networking opportunities because you can see everyone's favorite sites, and are given a compatibility rating. Since I am new it is too early to tell, but it's a great way to find people with similar interests.



So far I like what I see as this site is required for anyone who loves all of the knowledge and entertainment that the internet can bring. After all, It's free.


http://www.stumbleupon.com
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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

New Yahoo Page

The New York Times is reporting that tomorrow Yahoo will get an updated home page. I just have to say that it's way past due. I know it's easier said than done, but after Google takes their whole specialty and upgrades it, you have follow suit. Yahoo needs to do this bad because I can't think of the last time I decided to look something up on Yahoo. They'll still have the same problem that Bing will have, convincing and/or reminding the general public that they have a viable web search engine.

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/07/20/yahoo-is-revamping-its-home-page/
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Monday, July 20, 2009

TweetDeck

Here we are with Twitter battling for social networking supremacy against Facebook, but here's a program that helps them call a small truce. It's called TweetDeck. It's a free app that you can download on your computer or iPhone and it helps you keep track your Twitter and Facebook status updates as they come in. While someone who logs onto Facebook or Twitter once a week may not care, there are people who are a little more dedicated. This program works great for sending out staus messages as you can send out updates simultaneously from both services. Also, you have the option of customizing your TweetDeck into any color scheme that you desire. I happen to be partial to red.

Most people are finding Twitter as a great resource for trending topics, and TweetDeck keeps that in mind for you. You can create a box for any search that you want and TweetDeck will update you whenever someone Tweets about it.

As a warning, if you put up a really popular topic, then you might be getting Tweet updates all day. It could get a little overbearing.

Other than that, you can manage multiple Twitter accounts, but I don't think I'm ready for more than one. My only two negatives about TweetDeck is that you cannot reply to your friend's Facebook status messages, and you cannot change the size of the collumns. I would love to have a billion searches going on Tweet Deck at once, but I would have to scroll back and forth which is tedious. Nevertheless, if you have Twitter and Facebook (and are checking them all day) TweetDeck is worth a look as it's free.

http://www.tweetdeck.com
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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Microsoft to Open Retail Stores Right Next to Apple Stores

Wired is reporting that Microsoft chief operating officer Kevin Turner said at the Worldwide Partner Conference that Microsoft would be opening it's future retail stores right next to existing Apple Stores. I think while this seems petty to some, it is a good move. The Apple stores are extremely popular and are always very crowded with people getting computer help, buying ipods, or just checking their email for free. If Microsoft wants to make a nice chunk of money in their foray into retail, then they should do something that gives them maximum visability.

This isn't the first time two competitors have opened retail stores next to each other. Red Mango, a frozen yogurt company from Korea used this same technique when penetrating the American market by setting up shop near Pinkberry, a company already established in the US.

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2009/07/microsoft-to-open-retail-stores-next-to-apples/

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Bing vs. Google

In research after writing my ten minute review of Bing.com, I found this website called, bing-vs-google.com. Why settle with one web browser when someone made a site that gives you two at once. You enter whatever you want to look up as always and both browsers load up. Searching the web has never been so easy. I give Bing credit for looking a little cleaner, but I stick with Google since I'm so used to it.
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Google Reader and how I use it.



This Youtube video give a brief description of how to use Google Reader, a popular RSS, site. I can't say enough about Google Reader. It saves me so much time because instead of going to a billion websites everyday I can just go to my Google Reader and decide from there what to read. Another benefit of Google Reader is that I have a billion fun websites that I visit, and since I don't bookmark them, I forget about them forever. With Google Reader and Flock you can just click on the RSS button right next to the address bar and it will prompt you to add your page to Google Reader.

Some people have concerns about adding too much stuff to your Google Reader. My opinion is that there is never too much. If you organize all of your subscriptions into nice and neat folders, you will never have to worry about feeling cluttered.

Now I can just read my feed with all items included or I can click on individual topics.
Overall if you're overstimulated and need 20 things going at once, Google Reader is something that you should have been using 2 years ago. It's a time saver and a half, and easy to use.
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Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Bing Bing

Okay, here is the situation. I have really been trying hard to figure out what is the point of Microsoft Bing. I have asked around, heard people say they liked it, but gotten no concrete answers that I can write about. I have looked at the site, discovered little, and I wondered if I was trying hard enough.

I often find that Microsoft is all about state of the art technology, but without the passion and soul. Natal, Milo, rumors of touch screen desks sound great, but they're almost too sterile. There's a reason that people always buy ipods and iphones, and Zune's end up flooding Ebay on December 26th. Microsoft does not seem to embrace the human aspect with their products.

Nevertheless, I am a team player and I want to experiece Bing. I'm going to spend 10 minutes messing around with this thing and I'll tell you what I find.

Okay, 10 minutes are up, and I have to say, I found something useful for Bing.

I started out by logging in and going to the homepage. You get a nice picture to start, but unlike iGoogle, there is no customization feature for the site.

One thing I noticed is that Bing is pretty heavy on shopping and selling of goods. I am not saying that is a bad thing however. Many people love internet shopping. Why spend 20 minutes driving to the mall, 40 minutes walking around stores, 5 minutes on line, and 20 minutes driving home(after spending 10 trying to remember where you parked). Bing is holing up their end of retail by giving you options. This search for Charles Darwin gives a huge selection of options. It shows his books, prices, the publishing company link as well as other tidbits. You can find a selection of his interviews, quotes, and videos about him. There's a feature called Bing cashback which I didn not get to during my 10 minutes, but I would guess it's a sale price for shopping through Bing.

The travel section of Bing was also helpful. Instead of going to US Airways, Jet Blue, and every other airline's individual websites, you can do all of that on Bing. Here, I put in information for a trip to Charlotte, NC from NYC. If I was the jetsetting type, I would enjoy seeing the cheap last minute flights at the bottom of the page. After I put in the information I got a listing of flights that fit my criteria.Bing gave me a listing of all of the flights it found. The lowest price was $138 USD which I assume is for a roundtrip flight since I paid $200 for round trip on July 4th weekend. I also like the feature in the top left which gives a suggestion on if I should buy now or wait. When i was researching tickets for my previous trip I went to 5 different airline flights to compare prices, but this was much quicker. As a side note they also have info on booking a hotel as well, but with only 10 minutes, I had to keep the ball rolling.


As far as the basic purpose of Bing, a web search engine, it's good but not life altering.
I searched my favorite band, Dream Theater, and I got the standard links. The left column did show customized links for Dream Theater that would be helpful. Pictures, lyrics and concert tickets (Bing's always trying to make a buck) are all links that someone looking up the band might find useful. Also when you search a site, you can mouse over this little orange ball that gives you a quick description of the website.
It's nothing major, but these features could save you some time because you can figure out what websites have instead of wasting your time clicking on links that may not suit your needs.

The video feature on Bing is also a strong feature. After searching Michael Jackson, I had videos come up that I could actually watch on the site without having to go to another page.



General video searches also have value as they are well organized. You don't have to search through a billion videos to find full episodes of a television show as there are tabs to seperate everything.I did not get a chance to see everything that Bing has to offer, (I only gave myself 10 minutes) but I did see enough to feel that there is a market for this search engine. I think Bing's biggest problem will be getting people to get more comfortable with Bing then Google. Sometimes when things aren't broke you don't want to fix it. Bing just has to figure what is broken about Google and they might have a chance.
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Twitter Tutorial

http://calilewis.me/12-days-of-twitter

Cali Lewis, geek extrodinaire (and an inspiration), is writing a 12 part series about Twitter. I can't say enough good things about Twitter for recreation, promotion, and information. When Michael Jackson died, I did not find out through the New York Times website, I found out through Twitter. Cali explains all the terms that Twitter uses as well as all of the good things you can do through Twitter. My personal favorite feature is the ability to save searches on topics that you like. You save a search and you can see any public "Tweet" on that topic. Take a look.

Google to create a Operating System

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/08/technology/companies/08operate.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=google%20operating%20system&st=cse

Google apparently is not happy with innovating anything, now they want to innovate everything. Making a web browser is one thing, but an operating system is a huge undertaking. Not only does Google need a top of the line OS, but they also need software makers to support it. Nevertheless, the people of Truperior are loyal to quality, not a name brand, so if Google puts something out worth using, I'll be using it. Otherwise, this could be Google's first big failure.
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Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Michael Jackson Memorial Coverage

http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-10280634-93.html

There's plenty of places to see it if you're interested.
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10 Apple Essentials

http://www.maclife.com/article/feature/10_most_awesome_free_plugins_os_x_application_0

I don't use a Mac, but this list should help all of you that do.
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