Archive for the ‘Mashup’ Category

I didn’t make CES this year so, I’m doing a bit of “web watching” and trying to stay current on the events.  

One keynote I sat through was the live webcast of Intel’s CEO Paul Otellini, eJamming’s Alan Jay Glueckman and front man Steve Harwell of SmashMouth.  This was an interesting and entertaining demo. 

As a musician I admire what eJaming software is all about.  They are enabling musicians to play together in real-time as if in the same room, but in actuality they could be across the world from each other.  The power of today’s PC’s and the internet make it all possible.  While there was some notable sync delays in the band being remote while Harwell sang on the CES stage — it was cool.  

This technology will only get better and truly encourages creativity, teaching options for kids and will expand the community of musicians. 

There were a couple of references to SmashMouth playing at the Intel party tonight…sorry I’ll miss that one. 

Note: Picture courtesy Intel webcast.

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ISEF Winner Hacks iPhone

HotzDid you hear about the student George Hotz, 17, Glen Rock, New Jersey who was awarded “Best of Category” and received a $5,000 Intel scholarship and an Intel® Centrino® Duo Mobile Technology-based notebook? 

He spent the summer trying to successfully unlock the iPhone  Hotz runs a blog and you can find all the information on how-to there. 

In the picture (right), Hotz was a 2005 – Intel ISEF finalist when he was 15 and showed off his project titled, “The Googler”. 

ISEF is sponsored by Intel and has been administered by Science Service since its inception in 1950. Science Service is a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the understanding and appreciation of science among people of all ages. 

After Hotz unlocked the iPhone he put it up on eBay and was getting a lot of bids over $10K.  However this morning on his blog site he states the iPhone has been traded.  It seems that Terry Daidone, the founder of Certicell contacted Hotz and offered to make a trade for the iPhone. Hotz traded it for a Nissan 350Z and three 8GB iPhones. Hotz is sending the iPhones, unlocked if they wish, to jpetrie(the first donater), gray(the reversing genius), and iProof(who is truly amazing at finding stuff online).

Hotz left for school yesterday, presumably going fast in a 350Z…don’t all 17 year olds drive fast?!  Sort of beats my “What I did this summer?” story… 

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Israel Web 2.0Many of my RSS feeds and blogs I read there is technology and innovation coming out of Israel in a big way. It’s difficult to keep up with the reports on technologies, acquisitions and new startup companies that seem to happen there weekly. What’s the deal? I did a little research to look behind the scenes and try and understand the incredible start-up success rate in this country.

Here’s a bit of info on technology in Israel:

  • Motorola’s commercial cell phone was developed in Israel. Motorola has its largest development center in Israel
  • Intel has four major development centers in Israel.
  • Israel has one of the highest percentages of computers and cell phones per capita in the world.
  • Israeli Universities are known worldwide for their extraordinary professionalism in science and engineering fields.
  • In proportion to its population, Israel has the largest number of startup companies in the world. In absolute terms, Israel has the largest number of startup companies than any other country in the world, except the US (3,500 hi-tech companies).
  • Outside the United States and Canada, Israel has the largest number of NASDAQ listed companies.
  • Microsoft has one of its three “strategic development centers” outside the US in Israel. It is based on several startup companies that Microsoft has acquired in Israel, which are now part of this development center. Most of Windows NT technology was developed in Israel.
  • SAP AG, the enterprise software leader, has its larger development center outside Germany in Raanana, Israel. This center, called “SAP Labs Israel”, is also based on several startup companies that SAP acquired in Israel.
  • Checkpoint, the world’s leader in internet security and firewalls is an Israeli company.
  • Israel is ranked #2 in the world for venture capital funds right behind the US.
  • Israel has the third highest rate of entrepreneurship – and the highest rate among women and among people over 55 – in the world.
  • Voice mail technology was developed in Israel by Comverse.
  • The AOL Instant Messenger was developed in 1996 by four young Israelis.
  • Given Imaging, an Israeli company, developed the first ingestible pill-sized video camera, used for medical diagnostic without the need of an invasive operation.
  • The Israeli company M-Systems developed the USB-Flash Drives, used for portable storage all over the world. The company was recently bought by SanDisk, an American company, the world’s leader in the flash storage market, established by an Israeli.
  • IBM, Kodak, Cisco, HP, Google, Novell and many others, also have large scale research and development centers in Israel.
  • Israel is a major player in the high tech world. The R&D centers and talent have produced some amazing technological achievements…more than any other place in the world with the exception of Silicon Valley.

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    When it comes to real estate technology, you are helped out by mashups everyday and may not even realize it. What’s a mashup? Basically, it’s a combination of Web applications that are “mashed” together to do something totally different. In the real estate industry, mashups are most prominent in map form, such as integrating housing databases and MLS listings with maps. One of the original examples of this in the real estate industry is HousingMaps.com.

    Real estate mashups not only make agents more attractive to clients, but they can also help your business, allowing to streamline functions and work more efficiently. Now comes mashups with social networks like Facebook.

    * Adds over 100,000 users per day
    * Currently >1130 discrete apps on the F8 Platform which was release in May 2007 (~95 apps a week!).
    * Current user base over 24 Million (growing at a rate of 3% per week since opening network to the public in fall 2006)
    * Expected to reach 50 Million active users by end of 2007
    * 50% of users not in college, by end of year estimated to be 75% not in college
    * 25 and older is the fastest growing demographic
    * 50% of users use Facebook everyday (including yours truly)
    * Recently passed eBay in daily traffic, and working on passing Google
    * Number one photo sharing application on the ‘Net despite lacking features of others like Photobucket
    * Facebook’s Events application more used than Evite
    * Significant growth, but as yet has not rolled out a serious monetization model beyond simple ads-page.

    If you’re in the real estate biz you look at this “pool” of potential candidates and drool because some of those 24M active users are likely interested in renting, buying or selling a home, right? With the new F8 platform Facebook opened up an opportunity for developers to take advantage of powerful social media and the software distribution model of the social network.

    The first Real Estate application called Neighborhoods byPoint2 NLS just released a new application that allows you to identify the neighborhood you live in and see others that live around you. You can also upload community announcements and photos of your area and see all of the Point2 listings in your neighborhood, city or area.

    Who is Point2 Technologies Inc.? They create software for the heavy equipment and real estate industries. They operate the internet real estate listing marketplace organized by neighborhood, Point2 Homes. They’ve developed applications that help real estate agents use the web effectively to solicit, sell and buy property in your neighborhood.

    The Point2 Neighborhoods application shows you who lives close to you, what they’re up to, and what is happening in your neighborhood. In scary detail I might add so, make sure you’ve got our privacy settings appropriately set and get to know your neighbors.

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    Flippingpad_LogoRan across a new social network for those involved in real estate, at pretty much every level of involvement. Called the Flipping Pad.

    In this community are areas to post properties for sale or others that are of commercial interest in one way or another. You can create a user profile, find other members to conduct business with, or join in a forums discussion to share thoughts about the industry.

    The listings seem to be the key elements of the site, and comments and ratings are left for each listing. The “pads” listed have accompanying icons indicating if the property is a case study listing, if it’s looking for partners, if it’s a potential bargain, and if it’s actively for sale.

    As you might imagine, a large amount of the user interaction takes place around these listings.

    User profiles will also display their listings as well as their forums comments, and in the forums, there is the ability to subscribe to a particular user’s thread if you’d like to keep up with them. There’s no way to send direct messages between users, or add them as friends.

    The Flipping Pad founders have a blog on the site, which is a good overlay of editorial content, sometimes even good advice for others in the industry.

    There’s no way, however, to subscribe to this via RSS yet.

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    I’m sure you’ve heard about Justin — and Justin.tv — he’s 23 and been wearing a video camera and webcasting his life live on the web for the past couple months. Everything he does is broadcast live — similar to the Hollywood movie The Truman Show.

    Justin’s 24/7 reality online TV show has turned into a bit of a mini-phenomenon. His apartment was raided by the police, and they were later evicted by their landlord. They were on the Today Show. Justin was hanging out with famous rappers. A month ago, he was apparently on a date — the camera is stuffed into the curly locks of some blond. Everyone was wondering if this is the girl from the other night that some are thinking he “got lucky” with. This is “spicy” stuff! It all seems intimate and after wearing the camera gear for six months in prep for the go live web site, he likely doesn’t even think that the camera is there. The site is way successful.

    Justin has big plans. He wants a lot of people doing the same thing in the future — so you could essentially flip through “life channels” of various people across the planet. Perfect for the bored at work generation…I could see people letting each other know what’s going on in “so and so” life at any moment.

    Admit it…you’ve always wanted to start your own real-life television show? Now you can because Justin.tv is launching its own network to allow users to create and publish their own shows. Or, if you prefer just sit back and snoop/peek into other people’s lives — as they stream themselves live on the web.

    Here is the ultimate Ustream.tv mash-up. Your computer screen will be turned into the security room of a local K-Mart or a Las Vegas Casino with all these live cameras.

    Enjoy peeping…

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    I ran across a cool website mention in the local paper today and decided to give it a look. I’m a visual person and making things visual always gets my attention. IBM’s Visual Communication Lab enables anyone to upload all kinds of data and turn them into graphs, maps, tag clouds and other visuals.

    For example, want to convert the rhetoric over Iraq into something you can see or visualize? A user did just that by taking the text of the British House of Commons debate on the Iraq war and then converted the text into a tag cloud that displays heavily used words in larger type and little used words in little type.

    See the IBM site here or click on the image:

    Enjoy those visuals…

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    Scooters R Us

    Intel Corporation is celebrating 30 years in the embedded business. They must have contracted the Teutul boyz (Doug Davis (left:Intel GM), founder Paul Teutul with sons Paul, Jr. (‘Paulie’) middle and Mikey, on the right) of Orange County Chopper (OCC) and American Chopper/Discovery television fame. The high-definition TV show has become popular in the US as this (sometimes comical) family business yell’s, shouts and throw’s things at each other while making one-off customized motorcycles. The photo is courtesy of the embedded conference keynote where the bike was displayed.

    I like to drink beer from a Mason jar while listening to Dwight Yoakam as much as the next guy, but just don’t get trying to ride one of these spuds. It’s akin to driving one of the Rose Bowl floats in normal traffic. People will stare and you might believe people think you are cool, but really they are wondering how the hell that thing ended up stuck between your legs after you escaped the parade.

    Corporate America** seems star struck using the OCC crew anytime they need to inspire PR ratings, perspire “cool-ness” or boost news coverage. I ride a simple and plain Harley, but have to think that eventually this whole $mega$-custom-chopper fad is going to burn out like a hunk of magnesium thrown in the camp fire during a guys drunken weekend hunting party.

    The real question is…if I knew what will be the next must have for the extra cash burdened set…I wouldn’t be writing this blog now would I!

    **Hewlett-Packard ran a commercial during the forth quarter of the Super Bowl. The 30-second spot featured OCC — as one of the world’s leading makers of custom motorcycles and how it uses the HP xw8400 Workstation. HP also had a bike build off for a business event on March 28, 2007 seen HERE.

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    Be careful out there. I often register at Web 2.0 sites as part of my function in life to sketch, discuss, “hot-glue”, mashup, hack, build and think toward a more innovative future.

    Most recently in reviewing “Mommy” sites I’ve been posing as a 35 year-old mom (Carmen – likes Cars and Men – get it?) with 4 kids. My oldest son, Ricky, is 16 so he’s taking care of Tabitha, 6, and Billy, 4. My youngest, Jeremy, 3 months, is somewhere around here. He’ll turn up. He usually does.

    In looking around some of these sites and they’re disturbing to say the least. The type of information being shared is pretty scary. You often see detailed information about the person and their family, holiday photos of the kids including geo-tags of their house and other content that could be used to identify them. Some of the things parents post makes them look completely clueless or like they are sitting at the computer writing a blog while their kid festers in a dirty diaper. Are parents really this stupid these days? As far as I’m concerned, parents posting too much information aren’t fit to be parents because they put their families at risk at the very worst and at the very best look like they are wasting time on the computer when they could be doing something better. With their kids!

    In the backwaters of my online watch, I’ve heard that unemployed guys spend half their time trolling blog comments and the other half trying to pick up middle-aged women on the “Mommy” social networks.

    As Carman the 35 year-old mom, I like that my profile is public. It’s good knowing that a lot of guys scour these sites looking for hot single (and not so single) moms to pick up on. I posted my pics from before I had my 4 kids and before the crank took my teeth so, I look pretty good in my profile. Just got an email from a used car salesman in New Jersey. He could be the one! And as long as they’re still collecting unemployment benefits bring them on! After I log off MommyBuzz I’ll head over to CafeMom and see if anybody can recommend the best online dating site. Still looking for a real man to take care of my kids. My welfare check arrives on Friday’s and I can’t wait to buy a new Alienware computer. My games are going to be so hot with the NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTX graphics card!

    The list of social networks for moms is growing: they include MomJunction, Maya’s Mom, MothersClick, MommyBuzz, MTV’s ParentsConnect, Famster, Minti, RaisingThem, Cingo and CafeMom. To be candid, I’m not sure which or how all these sites will survive, but surely the market can’t support them all.

    Have to go now. Billy can’t find Jeremy. He’s probably stuck behind the furnace again. *Sigh* Do I have to do everything around here?

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    Looking in the mirror at just what objects did appear closer as the year comes to a close, I suspect a key question on your mind is: What is Mac’s prognostication of digital home and general usage trends next year…?

    1. Music is THE Application for Mobile Phones

    CD-quality music is going to be on more than half the entry-level cell phones used around the world by year-end. Music will be THE application on cell phones measured by consumer use and revenue-generated by handset makers and wireless service providers. Apple proved people will pay for good-sounding music, including hundreds of their favorite songs, easily accessed by simply pressing a button. And these music cell phones will store hundreds and late in the year thousands of songs, which is plenty for the average music fan.

    But what about video or Mobile TV adoption? Mobile TV will continue to develop, but will be challenged to win market acceptance because of the small size of cell phone screens. Battery limitations and the small screens make long-term, non-stop viewing unappealing, not a good user experience. The most likely mobile TV applications will be people checking sports scores and updates; cartoons, videos, standup comedy etc., and/or general news. All these will need to fit in about a 3-to-15 minute time frame, according to most industry experts. Many people won’t watch TV on a cell phone for much longer than that, except for some special, out-of-the-mainstream reasons. Mobile TV’s early adopters are expected to be mass transit commuters, primarily Asian and European adults. Look for those countries to be early adopters.

    2. Apple iTunes Remains Dominate

    Apple will see their iPod market share erode in ’07 from increased competition thanks to Microsoft (Zune), the increased availability of independent video subscriptions (studio’s, broadcasters, news organizations etc.,), and the MTV URGE marketing juggernaut of VH1, MTV and CMT.

    The “Leopard” version of the OS will extend Apple MSS to 8% and the FrontRow: media access embedded in the OS along with iTV is what the digital home needs in an interface device. The OS and device will be hugely successful with Apple retail stores able to promoting a compelling value proposition for consuming video content on your schedule…on any device… any time and keep those “buying eye-balls” on iTunes.

    The increase in content sources and video quality of the iPod will drive demand for portable video players and subsequently on demand video content. The standard drive size for an iPod will be 100GB by year end. Flash models will ship with 8GB standard and upper end units with 15GB.

    The Apple iPhone (Cell phone) will have few new features, but will become big sellers. It won’t be introduced at MacWorld rather it will be mid-year.

    3. IPTV Over-Hyped and HDTV Prices Drop as Demand Increases.

    The first sub-$500 27-inch LCD HDTV will hit the market. The dramatic price drops are causing consumers to not only upgrade living room sets, but buy additional units for different rooms in the house.

    IPTV adoption and speculation will continue to be rampant and over-hyped. Industry pundits will continue to state that it’s right around the corner and that the deals are ramping the industry. New mega-revenue streams don’t exist. There are opportunities for the industry, including programming for non-traditional platforms, but 2007 will not be the year for broad adoption.

    4. Blu-Ray and HD-DVD Sales Stall

    With no HD-DVD standard concluded, format wars will continue to confuse the consumer and retail is unable to position the differences. Touted as the second coming of the DVD, it’s starting to look a lot like the second coming of the Laserdisc. The inclusion of 1080p support in Playstation 3 (PS3) won’t matter to consumers because there is very little content available and it’s at a premium price.

    Speaking of Sony — they will stumble over backwards compatibility with PS2 games and lack of an interactive strategy. Gamers will become further addicted to Xbox 360 combined with Xbox Live, where points and ratings offer a direct comparison of skills against other Xbox Live members, which leaves PlayStation 3 out in the cold. For the console market, 2006 will be game over at Sony.

    5. Generation C (Content) Mind Share

    In three years, people born between 1980 and 2000, will outnumber Baby Boomers and Gen-Xers. They will be a consumer sector of tremendous importance to the media & entertainment industry. Not only are they big, but they will be fragmented and difficult to reach. The increasing number of media channels – instant messaging, email, social networks, iPods, mobile phones, Tivo, P2P networks, handhelds, video games, etc., – through which this group communicates and consumes media & entertainment, makes them a very elusive target for us to market to them. The characteristics of this generation – one embracing a pervasively digital world – and the implications for media, entertainment, and advertising is going to drive everyone nutty.

    Social networking services will morph into something even less useful, like social shopper with coupons and we’ll see sites provide buying recommendations triggered by your profile data.

    6. Microsoft Success

    Late-February they issue a Press Release proclaiming that “Windows Vista is the best selling operating system ever.” Consumers will love the Vista Media Center Edition with Xbox 360 connectivity in large scale. Adoption rates of Vista with XP customers will be very slow due to computational and memory requirements.

    Frustrated with Apple’s market power, the music industry will move aggressively closer to Microsoft. It won’t matter, as the Zune will be deemed the most underwhelming product Microsoft has ever made. And afraid of Microsoft’s market power, the movie industry will try to cozy up to Washington.

    Groove collaboration software will ship in the Office suite for the first time. It won’t matter as more significant desktop apps will move to an Ajax/server-based design like Zoho.

    7. MPAA Supports Consumer Content Value Chain (When Pigs Fly!)

    We buy a title, not a particular file for a title (so, we buy video once, for all devices)

    “Stop, pause, resume, buy, rent, etc.” all work across platforms, devices, and service providers/retailers

    Content transcoding is a job for the professionals and the serious hobbyists and the MPEG, H.264, video compression codec’s…whatever, is banned from everyday consumer vernacular

    We need to know as much about DRM as we need to know about locks in our bank safety deposit vault

    Content (purchased and our own creations) are as safe as credit cards (Meaning we should be angry when someone rips the content that we had to pay for)

    I left off the ever important legal prediction…there will be a felony conviction in the U.S. for a crime committed entirely in a virtual world and for the Wiki people, the word “mashup” will be the most overused word in 2007!

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