Introducing Bottlenose

Article first published as Intoducing Bottlenose on Technorati.

Dashboard
Dashboard

Without a doubt, the king of search engines doesn’t need to be introduced. It has become a verb and even an adjective. Google has been top innovation for quite a while now. This said, it also bases search results on keyword relevance and geolocation, among other very important factors. However, a new search engine is starting out with a similar notion, yet it has concocted a recipe with social media and crowdsourcing as its main ingredients: Bottlenose.

Unlike Google, you need to set up an account with Bottlenose so it can shape your search results based on your social media accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Linked in and others). It also provides you with a remote posting service for all of your linked accounts.

As for search results, it gives you the option to save them to your dashboard so you can review them later. It also gives you a list of trending topics and trending people which with one clic you can browse everything about that subject. With all the saved results, trends and a summary of all the publications and articles you follow, you can review topics as if they were an electronic newspaper.

To play the devil’s advocate, this is not 100% new. There are plenty of other services that can come up with a summary of your favorite publications, just like Rockmelt, Percolate, or Flipboard. As for search results combined with Social Media, Google had iGoogle which was recently shut down.

However, this little video might walk you through this new product and if you find it convenient enough, you can always sign up, and of course, it’s for free.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LUCcxGDzZDs&feature=youtu.be]

After a $500,000 Price Tag, Digg is no More

Digg- Sold
Digg- Sold

Article first published as After a $500,000 Price Tag, Digg is no More on Technorati.

After being born in 2004 as a very promising start up, and taking over $45 million dollars in rounds of investment, Digg has finally come to a halt. It has been sold for merely $500,000 by New York startup incubator Betaworks.

Betaworks reports Digg will go back to being a small start up with News.me building it back up. Mashable also reports that a series of troubles have hindered Digg as a company, going from poor traffic, changes in management and overall staff, including Kevin Rose’s departure back in 2011.
Digg was a great place for link building, news sharing and community creation. However, similar companies stepped in to make room for competition like Reddit. This is also the other side of the technological story: companies might grow exponentially, but they also can plummet with the same speed.

Today we have other social networks that focus more on visual aids and rich media rather than just text in order to succeed. Take Pinterest as an example: it has become the third most important social network almost overnight, all thanks to its image & video curation. Facebook has also taken upon itself to evolve into a more rich media related network by purchasing Instagram.

Some others have chosen niche markets in order to survive, just like MySpace. We can only hope that Digg does come back into something stronger.

The Economic Machine Finally Flourishing

After entire eras of being blocked from the world with internal ideologies and economic systems, China started the greatest economic growth ever recorded in history. It wasn’t long ago when foreigners turned to look at the Red Dragon for business opportunities. Entire Western educational systems have been shaped around this focus. As more and more foreigners visited the country and many of them decided to call China “home”, there was a clear product consumption difference between locals and foreigners.

While foreigners looked for products that reminded them of home or were internationally trusted labels, locals remained with their traditions and seldom did they choose something else in lieu of. I myself witnessed such a consumer behavior. Even at restaurants, bars or night clubs; the places were full of foreigners and few Chinese citizens to be seen in those places. Perhaps it was I who unknowingly chose those places?

Well it turns out that after four years, my then-roommate went back for another visit to the Red Dragon. This curious division was at last forgotten about. Foreigners started consuming more and more local products, and locals were consuming more international brands in more public places. What made them change?

Although many can speculate the possible reason, perhaps it must have something to do with information consumption and locals’ economic growth. The more you get to know a product and inform yourself about it, the more likely you are to consume it. More importantly, if you have the purchasing power to feed on that curiosity, then the sky is the limit.

So the long standing and rapidly developing economic plans in China have been doing terrific good to its people. So much so, that not only is local consumption being more internationalized, but locals are spending their holidays in other countries. In fact, this 2012 is a marked trend that all major touristic places around the world will be receiving a large flock of Chinese tourism.

Despite the controversial website blockage in China, plenty of Internet development is still occurring. They might not approve of the Internet giants like Facebook, Twitter or Google, but it doesn’t mean they came up with their own versions of these services.

Other than individuals’ economic growth and local IT, what will China do next then? Where will their machine-like economic plan take them?

How do you Make the Leader follow You?

It’s been a while since I’ve written about the big elephant in Tech World: Google + vs Facebook. In fact, it’s been a while since I’ve written an entry on this blog for that matter. But over the course of the last article, what have we learned as social networkers? You can always make the leader follow you and turn things around in the blink of an eye.

Facebook was getting a fat belly sitting on its throne for a while now. There was no social network out there that could even make it stand up and do a little work out. Now it seems breaking a sweat doesn’t even begin to describe this situation. Let’s look at some fact before and after G+ made its “plus” sign the scarlett letter on Facebook’s forehead.

Before

Facebook did a few changes on its network: First apps came pouring like a hurricane. People started complaining and so the network cut back on spammy apps. Only Zynga came across as a worthy side kick to a lot of people. (Who could forget all those Farmville invites?).

One of the most talked about issues was security and privacy policies. Although people were endlessly complaining, Facebook didn’t really do much about it but band-aid the situation. Truth be told, even if you restricted you profile so that only certain people could see things, the process was too complicated and sometimes unreliable.

After

Since G+ came into the scene, it has been nothing but a ghost chase for Zuckerberg’s network. Privacy settings were remastered by G+, in fact, presented in an entirely different model. Simple and easy as to placing people in different, drag and drop circles. More importantly, it’s effective.

G+’s interface is cleaner, more understandable and can be integrated with other Google family products like YouTube. You can simultaneously watch a video with dozens of people over the Hangouts feature.

What’s Facebook reaction? Exactly that, a reaction. Instead of innovating on their own, trying to come up with new, different and improved features, Facebook has done nothing but imitate G+ in any way possible. The interphase has changed, privacy settings can be chosen from the publication box and other things.

But here’s the interesting part: not only is Facebook falling behind and following G+ like a lost puppy, it’s making its own network a lot more confusing and cluttered. There are so many mixed features, it’s hard for the public to keep up with them and to even notice that they can do something useful for them.

So there it is. It’s not quite the David vs Goliath situation, is more like a Godzilla vs King Kong deal. We can all figure out who’s who in that scene. Let’s see if in truth those 700 million users can get a change of hearts.

Facebook vs Google + Becomes the New Mac vs PC

Article first published as Facebook vs Google + Becomes the New Mac vs PC on Technorati.

Remember the video clips featuring two actors representing Mac and PC? It was a great representation of what still goes on between both brands. Although the videos were made to promote Mac over PC, they still coexist. Even with Mac only having a 15% of the pie in the US, rest assured Mac computers aren’t going anywhere; if anything, they’re growing every day.

Same thing seems to be happening on the newborn battle between Facebook and Google +. With 750 million users Facebook has world domination up until this point. They should definitely take care of their own share, that’s for sure. Just last week CNBC reported Facebook Stock to be in Jeopardy.  It’s no wonder when despite Facebook’s attempt to “wow” their audience with their Skype add-in launch, Google+ is still growing and it still represents a direct threat.

Google+ isn’t going anywhere either, except further growth. To be honest, it’s comforting as a user to finally see some healthy competition as far as social networks go. With Twitter as King of micro-blogging and Facebook as King of overall social networks, there didn’t seem to be much hope for anyone else to bring more innovation to the table.

G+ has brought a much needed push in the industry where in order to be better, brands need to come up with improvements. For example, just this week Facebook launched Business exclusive profiles to counter Google +’s business approach. It is a subsite that will not interfere with personal profiles and make it easier for companies to stop impersonating an individual.

This shoulder to shoulder race is representative of what true competition needs: countering with new products and services, so that in the end the true benefitiary is the consumer. Hopefully both Facebook and Google + can stay in the game to continue this benefit. Which actors will be chosen to impersonate the social giants should there be a “Mac vs PC”-like video?

Read more: http://technorati.com/technology/article/facebook-vs-google-becomes-the-new/#ixzz1TWUZaBsc

Whatever Happened to Phones?

No, really, whatever happened to phones? When was the last time you used your home phone or even your office phone? Unless you really are a telemarketer or talk to your relatives via prepaid card on the phone, I’m willing to bet that was a really long time ago.

Everyone uses either Skype for much cheaper calls or their cell phones — which by the way aren’t used to make a lot of calls anymore–. Granted, there are still a couple of dozen calls to be made from the portable little devices, but as you may have figured out by now, you check your e-mail, social updates and somewhat still text. All those, even if singled out, out match voice calls by far.

Even preteens abuse their cellphones typing away text messages as if they were given candy for every one they send out. Gossip-Girlying it out by taking pictures and uploading them to Facebook or some other online community.

Alexander Graham-Bell may be didn’t even remotely imagine eventually his work would be nearly obsolete. It was though, a major stepping stone to something bigger, more global, and much more practical. So type away people, we’re getting good at typing on small keyboards (we even keep our nails tightly cut to get faster at it!).