November 19, 2010

Google To Buy Groupon? Some Positives and Negatives [Rumor]

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Groupon - Google Acquisition Rumors

Every now and then a possible buyout of a big company is rumored to be underway at the offices of Google, a few months back it was a $2.5 billion buyout attempt of Twitter and today it’s the world’s largest social coupon sharing website Groupon.

According to Kara Swisher at AllThings Google is willing to pay above the $2 billion to $3 billion offered to the company by Yahoo. At this time the two company’s are not disclosing any details about the deal or for that matter if a deal is even in the works.

The move would be a big win for Google who could claim yet another dominance in local search, currently their services already allow mobile and other users to search for local businesses and other locations based on their location. The move would also give a big boost to the company’s Google Places interface by providing a comprehensive local deals system to uses on Google Places. Google could of course then make money from the Groupon system itself and through their ads based platform, allowing for extra revenue to be created for the newly purchased company.

With Google attempting to build out their Google Me social networking system, the Groupon acquisition could also provide a nice integration into their social networking attempt, which in turn could bring with it a loyal customer base that already spends nearly $50 million per month with the social coupon site. Groupon customers provide each other with a valuable social networking service, so why not bring them together to help form your new social community? read more

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November 18, 2010

Hootsuite Releases iPad App For Better Social Networking

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Hootsuite iPadHootSuite has finally taken their social media dashboard to the Apple iPad.

With HootSuite iPad users gain access to multiple Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare accounts monitoring, message scheduling for those times you want your messages to go out at a certain time, Twitter search capabilities, click statistics for your social networking messages and geo-location based services.

HootSuite users with existing accounts can sync their accounts to the iPad, allowing for seemless integration among various devices.

According to Mashable, the HuiteSuite application for iPad is free to download from Apple, however limitations on use are now imposed by the company’s newly minted freemium business model.

Here’s a closer look at the new HootSuite iPad Application: read more

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Should WordPress Rethink VideoPress?

Despite not being as popular as services like Akismet, VideoPress is nonetheless an excellent service from Automattic that allows users to upload videos upon their WP.com blogs (not to mention self hosted sites as well).

While VideoPress matches (if not exceeds) YouTube when it comes to playing back videos (especially on smartphones), I have not seen much adoption of the service outside of various local news networks as well as a few media bloggers.

Although Automattic is currently busy with numerous projects ranging from perfecting VaultPress to finalizing WordPress 3.1 features, the company may want to rethink its strategy when it comes to VideoPress in order to make the service more relevant. read more

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November 17, 2010

Disqus Goes Pro, Gives Me Another Reason To Switch

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Known mostly for their dead simple commenting system, Disqus has announced that they are launching premium services for their 1/2 million plus strong community.

Today, as part of the new Disqus, we’re introducing Add-ons. Add-ons are optional, premium tools and features that augment the core Disqus platform. They’re designed for growing communities that need the best tools and integration available from Disqus.

What are some add-ons? Analytics gives you a unique insight into your community and its growth. Single sign-on lets you seamlessly integrate Disqus with your existing authentication system. An advanced theme editor lets you craft your own custom theme for use with the Disqus platform. Moderation logging and reporting are tools that are invaluable for websites with multiple moderators or admins. (Official Disqus Blog)

Note: Emphasis theirs. read more

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Tiger Woods Cheats On Facebook With Twitter

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Tiger Woods Joins TwitterLet the social media image rebuilding begin. Tiger Woods on Wednesday morning sent his first official, non-promotion based tweet, it read: “What’s up everyone. Finally decided to try out twitter!”

The move comes after nearly a year of almost complete media silence from the former number one golfer. It should be noted that he did first tweet: Welcome to my new Twitter page at: www.twitter.com/TigerWoods on June 26th, 2009, while also sending tweets to check out his Facebook page and personal website, however he then stopped using the service and his newest tweet appears to be his first attempt of actually connecting with people rather than providing self-promotion.

The account is verified by Twitter and as of 12:58 ET he has 113,841 followers with hundreds more being added every minute.

Are you following Tiger Woods? I am just so I can see what masterful image building campaign he can weave together.

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November 16, 2010

Twitter For iPhone Embraces Push Notifications

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Twitter LogoAfter many months of waiting it looks like Twitter for iPhone will finally have a feature iOS users have been begging for without having to rely upon a third party service.

When you’re out and about, your phone probably isn’t always in front of you. It might be in your pocket or purse or on a table – perhaps with the screen off. We want to make sure you see important Tweets even when you’re not looking at Twitter at the moment. To help with that, today we’re launching push notifications for @mentions.

Whenever an account that you follow mentions you, you’ll immediately receive a notification. You’ll know who is talking to or about you on Twitter, and you’ll be able to continue the conversation in real-time. Notifications for @mentions will initially be available on SMS and on the latest version of Twitter for iPhone, which you can download today from the App Store. (Official Twitter Blog)

This feature will work for both direct messages as well standard mentions, although there is no word on whether Twitter will also send push notifications for retweets as well.

Previously users had to use a service like Boxcar in order to receive notifications, or tweet from a third party app like Echofon or Simply Tweet instead.

Twitter is promising to bring SMS as well as push notifications for fans using Android or Windows Phone 7 as well.

As far as Blackberry users go, they will have to reach out to RIM for support (if they do not have this feature already) as Twitter does not officially support Blackberry devices (despite the “officialness” of the name).

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Foursquare Debuts Trophy Case, Partner Badge Program

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Trophy Box - FoursquareFoursquare today debuted their new “Trophy Case” option, a portal that gives users a place to show off the various badges they’ve collected through the apps use.

The trophy case stores a users unlocked Foursquare badges. Users can then choose to view their Foursquare or Partner badges, while clicking on each badge brings up a description of each unlocked item.

The Trophy case also shows how the user earned their badge and which of their friends have also earned the same badge.

The official Foursquare blog also announced the launching of a Partner Badge program that can help various organizations engage their users at a higher level.

Ready to take advantage of your own company’s badge? Fill out this form to get started and Foursquare will get to work with you, however I have a feeling there might be a bottleneck for a little while.

In the meantime, here’s a biggest screenshot of the new Trophy Case option: read more

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Why Textpattern Should Choose Android Over iPhone

Despite the fact that every other major blogging platform boasts a presence upon the iPhone, the core developers of Textpattern have yet to show interest in the device, let alone provide the necessary code for third party developers to build one for Textpattern fans.

While having an official iPhone app would help Textpattern compete against rivals (like WordPress, ExpressionEngine and Joomla), it probably would be wiser for the community to combine their efforts and create an Android app instead.

Although skipping the iPhone entirely would be foolish (as Apple still has millions of loyal fans of the device), creating an Android app first could help convince the core developers that mobile blogging is not only needed, but relevant for the Textpattern community. read more

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November 15, 2010

Drupal 7 Re-Enters Beta?

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After months of beta testing, the team (plus an army of volunteers) have finally been able to reduce the number of critical bugs for Drupal 7 to zero which usually means that a CMS/blog platform is ready for prime time (after the release candidate anyways).

Instead of phasing the platform out of beta however, the team has decided to send Drupal for another round of testing.

As of today, Drupal 7′s critical issue queue has reached 0. A huge thanks to the tremendous effort of hundreds of people who have helped bring us to this momentous milestone!

By traditional definition, we should be entering release candidate phase. However, while we have been focused on smashing criticals, we have accumulated a “major” issue queue that’s currently 5 pages long, and have been neglecting to prepare for string freeze, which happens at RC1. (Official Drupal Blog) read more

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Facebook Announcement: It’s Not Email, But it is Messaging

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Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg

At a press conference in San Francisco this morning Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that the world’s largest social network company was preparing to launch a “modern messaging system.”

The move is a smart one for Facebook, as it was recently revealed that the number two app on the social network is Microsoft Live Messenger, despite nearly four billion messages passing through Facebook messaging each day.

According to Zuckerberg, the new system offers three parts that include seamless messaging, conversation history and a social inbox. The “social inbox” feature is “not email” but rather a way to sort what messages you see from friends.

While it’s “not email” Facebook is passing out Facebook.com email addresses to all of their users.  The idea is simple, users can receive messages through the system in email form (which kind of makes it email) but the main function will be to deliver seamless messaging. read more

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