Interesting reads (weekly)

  • This analysis of Twitter’s shift from developer darling to standalone creator is a fascinating read. I remember the blog post alluded to in this article, and the shockwaves it caused about Twitter’s supposed retreat from openness, dev culture and the open web.
    Of course, Twitter has never pretended to be a charity; it employs people, and they need paying. It has offices, shareholders, expense accounts – it’s a company that exists to make money and grow. The Meerkats and Datasifts, that build businesses on someone else’s data, are always gong to be at risk. “Twitter’s story in many respects makes me think of Google: both companies started out benefiting greatly from openness and the power of both connecting users to what they were interested in and opening up powerful APIs to developers. The monetization model is even similar: note the AdSense reference above. Over time, though, Google has pulled more and more of its utility onto its own pages (and the revenue balance in the company has followed), just as Twitter focused on its own apps, and now Google is even starting to eat its best customers like travel websites and insurance agents (members-only), just like Twitter ate Datasift.”

    tags: Twitter api social+media

  • What is says on the tin.

    tags: video how-to

  • “what we have here are ignorant people (Vaynerchuk, Brogan, Kawasaki, and friends) telling big brands and agencies to dump their money into unproven platforms, or platforms with really shady metrics that they can totally fudge and claim their successful to journalists who don’t really know better. A tech blog may know to call out Vaynerchuk’s portfolio company, MeerKat, for spamming Twitter in order to grow their service, but other publications like AdAge won’t. And guess which one of those publications the brands and advertisers are reading? So the money continues to flow from the agencies and brands and that leads to VCs continuing to prop up these companies”OUCH

    tags: Google+ social media

  • I had no idea it was based on such an everyday annoyance as an unavailable name. Now, Flicker would just look weird. “We wanted Flicker, but the guy who had it wouldn’t sell,” says co-Founder Caterina Fake. “So I suggested to the team, ‘Let’s remove this “e” thing.’ They all said, ‘That’s too weird,’ but I finally ground everyone down. Then of course, it became THE thing and everyone started removing vowels right and left.””

    tags: flickr marketing

  • Where next? I like Google Glass and it’s been useful for our journalism, but the problem was it was made by developers, and really it’s a fashion accessory for most people. So, we’re expected to fit around the device, not vice versa. This piece on where wearables are headed is worth a read. “We’re at an interesting point with these devices that feel analogue but have a subtle digital participation. We are used to watches being so simple that making them into tiny phones on your wrist may prove interesting to some but will create a split between those designing for aesthetics and those designing for function.

    When you get ready in the morning it seems natural to use voice. I don’t often talk to my computer because it has a rich set of interfaces but you could imagine a talking mirror, a piece of furniture that would work. With wearables we are in a weird place because they are a mix of analogue things and digital devices so do I use a crown or do I talk and tap?  Apple has done both with Siri and double touch but they have also included the scroll wheel from 20 years ago.”

    tags: new york times NYT wearables Glass

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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About Alison Gow

I'm a journalist, particularly interested in story-telling, networks and digital innovation.
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One Response to Interesting reads (weekly)

  1. Re Flickr – in Vietnam it’s nearly always pronounced just as Flick. Twitter quite often as Tweet. Facebook is Facebook but often with a puffing out of the cheeks on the book bit – as certain vowel sounds are.

    Re wearables – hard for me to gauge the hype from the reality. But when I first came to Vietnam every giveaway prize was a Honda Dream motorbike. Ten years on – it was an iPad and that continues. Oddly despite the fact that no one has Apple accounts or credit cards to buy apps. The local dealer just set it up with all the usual games and a shit load of pirated music and handed it over.

    Samsung is investing massively in Vietnam and more and more of its phone will be built here but Apple remains the phone of choice.

    And everyone has a smart phone it appears – despite the relative poverty (you often see them with cracked screens). And yet – I’ve never seen a wearable. That might be because it’s in its infancy and it might be because you might not immediately notice. But I’ve never heard anyone want one. It occurs me to now that I wear a watch as I might jewellery – whereas before I wore one everyday. Now there’s always my phone if I want the time – or, more often than not – the corner of my computer screen. I think a watch may seem pretty old fashioned to the young population here.

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