This cool Quicktime movie threadlinked above comes in via Russell and features a vision of what the future could hold for real world barcode hyperlinks - where everything has a barcode that can be snapped by your mobile to take you directly to it's associated info.
Opera's new beta download, which will become the next major release is voice enabled. Meaning that you can have your web pages read to you and navigate by voice control - how cool is that?
You can Download it here Win only :(
"We were preparing for the 7.60 release, but as work progressed and we kept adding improvements and functionality, it became very evident that we now have a browser that is so powerful, secure, and easy to use that it exceeds the next logical version number and warrants a major release," says Jon S. von Tetzchner, CEO, Opera Software, and adds that all those who have licensed Opera 7 will, of course, receive free upgrades. "The new Opera version has dramatic improvements under the hood, in addition to some very helpful new features to welcome more and more users to take advantage of browsing the Internet in a fast, safe, and customizable way."
Opera is the first browser to prepare for a future of Web sites offering interactive, voice-enabled shopping and booking systems. You can also browse the Web using spoken commands, such as "Opera next link", "Opera back", or "Opera speak". The latter command will make Opera read Web page content and e-mail messages to you aloud, adding usability as either a screen reader or advanced dictionary.
There are a whole bunch of other improvements including improved RSS handling and more. If they manage to get a Linux version out I may well have to give it a whirl, it'd make my life a lot easier if it actually worked...
In this thread, Shawn Collins shares his predictions about affiliate marketing in 2005 from an article he wrote for iMediaConnection. He touches on adware, cookie stuffing, affiliate blogs and the persistent rumor about the coming Google/Affiliat/Adwords changes that may be on the horizon.
"Changes in 2005 will result from cogent business decisions, reaction to litigation and following trends.
As we bid farewell to this year’s model of affiliate marketing and embark upon 2005, I’ve got to wonder what sorts of changes we are in for next year.
2004 was something of a turbulent year for affiliate marketers. The year kicked off with nervous and confused affiliate marketers trying to cope with CAN-SPAM, and throughout the year, a number of issues became industry lightning rods.
There were sagas about everything from search arbitrage, whether adware is badware, cookie stuffing, the use of trademarked terms, and more?"
Read the rest here, then come back to discuss it.
""His forte has never been as the grown-up running the company," he said. "He's the unpredictable mad genius behind Oracle. His life is an adventure, and Oracle is part of the adventure -- but not the whole thing. It's an old joke that they used to call it an Elvis sighting when Larry was actually in Redwood Shores. It's understood he's the company visionary and an itinerant CEO."
MocoNews threadlinked above point out that the W3C's Device Independence Working Group are up in arms about the proposed .mobi TLD. They argue that it goes against the core principles of the Internet: That the web should be device agnostic.
A consortium of mobile players led by Nokia have proposed the addition of .mobi to the top level domain space so that users and application/site owners can specify that something.mobi is for mobile devices, such as cell phones or PDA's. The W3C argue that this is harmful to the web:
This domain will have a drastically detrimental effect on the Web. By partitioning the HTTP information space into parts designed for access from mobile access and parts designed (presumably) not for such access, an essential property of the Web is destroyed.
It is true that to to optimize the use of any device, an awareness on the part of the server allows it to customize the content and the whole layout of a site. However, the domain name is perhaps the worst possible way of communicating information about the device. Devices vary in many ways, including:
Network bandwidth at the time,
Screen size and resolution,
Intermittent or continuous connectivity,
and so on. While with the current technology, the phrase "Mobile" may equate roughly in many minds to "something like a cell phone", it is naive -- and pessimistic -- to imagine that this one style of device will be the combination that will endure for any length of time. Just as concepts such as the "Network PC" and the "Multimedia PC" which defined profiles of device capability were swept away in the onrush of technology, so will an attempt to divide devices, users and content into two groups.
Google working on video search
In a recent interview with Mats Carduner (general manager of Google France) he revealed Google was working on Google Video search
Dodgy translated version:
For the multi-media one, the mission of Google remains to organize information and to make it available. One aims at the Web in all his forms: the text, images and tomorrow the audio-visual one. Googles Labs work besides on this concept of indexing of the video.
Revenue Assurance for Mobile Content
As the market for mobile content grows the potential for revenue leakage does aswell. Threadlinked above is a look at the problems facing mobile content providers outlining the major business aspects and potential pitfalls for revenue leakage in an emerging industry:
he Yankee Group predicts that the U.S. mobile data market alone will represent $15.6 billion by 2008. QPass, for one, has seen tremendous growth in mobile content usage among its customers. The average transaction value for subscribers of QPass customer providers is $2.28. In September, QPass mobile operator customers achieved an average of $7.55 per purchasing subscriber, with an average spend of $36 to $42 per year for mobile content services.
To remain competitive, mobile operators often will roll out these content services before they are able to bill for them. When one U.K. mobile operator decided to roll out MMS, it offered the service free as a customer promotion, according to Megisto Chief Technology Officer Joel Halpern, but the promotion was free simply because the operator didn't know how to charge for it.
By far, mismanaging the relationships between all of the various entities is one of the greatest leakage points for mobile content. The process of revenue sharing and settling with third parties increases the need to accurately track revenue, and it only heightens the impact of potential leakage for both the content provider and mobile operator.
Just determining who is actually suffering the leakage—the mobile operator or the content provider—is a challenge. Often, neither player has the visibility needed to manage the transaction from start to finish.
It's a fairly detailed article but a skim through the key points gives a good overview of the industry itself and some of the problems it currently faces.
Paint.NET v2.0 is ready for download!
I'd never heard of Paint.net, the Washington State University's free graphics tool (threadlinked above) until today, but it's quite the app by all accounts. And could prove a worthy rival for GIMP, it's *nix based older brother.
Although Paint.NET does not sport a GNU license like the GIMP (graphical image manipulation program) it does grant permission for you to do pretty much the same stuff:
Permission is hereby granted, free of charge, to any person obtaining a copy of this software and associated documentation files (the "Software"), to deal in the Software without restriction, including without limitation the rights to use, copy, modify, merge, publish, distribute, sublicense, and/or sell copies of the Software, and to permit persons to whom the Software is furnished to do so, subject to the following conditions:
It's only been around since Spring this year, it started out as a senior design project at WSU but with v2.0 pronounced fit for download it's already causing a stir at Slashdot
The GIMP on the other hand has been around for ever, it started life as a similar project at Berkeley the mid 90's (the first full version was released in 1997) and has been used professionally by hollywood effects companies and more regular designers alike.
Sanctamonious Trumped up Drivel Red Alert!
This piffle really does have to be read to be believed: pj fucso makes a debut appearance at the Clicz article threadlinked above pointed out by Danny
It's nothing short of a sad advertisement using scare tactics and negative marketing (aimed at the whole industry except ms fucso it seems) to further the authors ego.
Unless you're at a loose end, dont bother. For those with nothing better to do (that would be me right at this moment heh..) here's a few choice snippets:
As a corporate SEM specialist, I've been directly involved with firing several SEM firms that have spammed the search engines.
Ok, i can live with that, though i doubt it's that many...
When I discover an SEM firm practices questionable SEM tactics, there's only one thing to do: Fire it. Although my penalty for an SEM firm that spams the search engines is completely consistent, how I actually go about firing them varies according to the degree of their spam tactics.
Ok, you're the big cheese huh? Im duly impressed...
Many SEM firms will agree to work on a month-by-month basis. It's usually not worth my time or energy to confront the firm in question about its spam-like ways. If the transgression is minor, I simply allow the contract to lapse and find an SEM firm that better suits my company's needs.
Doesn't seem very practical to me. Seems like you should have spent some time with the firm before hand making sure they understood what was required of them. In essense, your saying that you either a) dont spend anytime talking to the companies you hire about what you want from them or b) talk to them, but ignore them going against your stated wishes and have to start developing a good working relationship (if that's the case at all) with the next poor firm that happens accros you. Way to go...
What was hot in the blogosphere in 2004?
Blogpulse have taken a years worth of blog posts and calculated a whole bunch of mind numbingly naff, but curiously interesting blog trivia for your delectation.
How did BlogPulse compile this data? Top Web sites, blogs, blog posts, media sources, media stories, books, movies, and products were tabulated by counting the number of times bloggers linked to them during 2004. Top people, actors, and actresses were found by counting the number of times those names, including common variations, appeared in posts.
SEW member cryptblade raises an excellent point regarding Google Adwords in the threadlink above: Try a search for conflict diamonds and, untlill just now you would have got a whole bunch of adwords ads with dynamic titles like "buy conflict diamonds" etc.
Im assuming Google have seen the thread and taken steps as when i tried it just a moment ago all i got was two very relevant results.
It does raise an interesting question about automation in general though. With Google News making headlines in recent months over innapropriate news stories we now hear similar complaints/observations about Adwords.
I'd be at a loss as to what to suggest what, if anything, could be done to eliminate either problem but surely Google need far greater human intervention and a way of allowing the public to notify them of such things?
WTF is Going on at SEW?
Grab yer popcorn fight fans, yours truly is taking a hammering over at SEW :-)
The thread, started by me, was in complaint over an odd occurance with the user rep system. I took a hit, which in itself is no biggie as when i posted there regularly bad rep was an almost daily occurance aswell as good - some people like what i post, some dont - it's all good. The problem was more due to continued harrasment by one mod (which started when Threadwatch was born?)
Moving on from that, as it's not really the star of the show, have a read: The thread meanders all over the place, focusing mainly on SEW forum policy with intermittent sniping for my benefit.
Now, dont feel you have to take sides heh.. (in fact, have a pop here if you feel like it), this is just a heads up on a great thread that also includes a fair bit of pot shotting at renagade moderator Sebastian who had posted earlier taking a swipe at pretty much everything but highlighting what he sees as some burning problems with the SEW forum - when the mods start to rumble, it's worth paying attention to IMO - here's a quote:
sick of "me too" posts here at SEW. it's gettin' worse towards xmas and waaay worse after SES sessions
and from the threadlinked post:
it's crap. this place should be about search discussion. open and expressive. ...like it was at launch. now a couple of entrepreneurial people have done well for themselves in this professional space and they dominate discussion.
if you spend so much time learning and researching and producing for clients, how can you be on SEW forums all day, every day???
Much of both posts have been <snip>'d out and i beleive he refered to WMW not SES but it's still a corker.
From the original threadlinked Nick takes a Kickin' post, rcjordan writes:
Mark Fletcher: Boing Boing, Bloglines and Google
This is a blog post with some interesting information about the impact Bloglines can have on referrals:
"Nutshell: Bloglines is the 3rd largest source of referring pageviews on BoingBoing, and the largest generator of referring hits to BoingBoing content, larger than Yahoo! and Google -- and all other search engines -- combined. Bloglines generates 30% of all referring hits to BoingBoing."
Interesting to see some real life referral figures about how RSS and and aggregator can cut the SE's out of the traffic loop.
Lots of interesting links and data in that blog post.
Yahoo! European president Chappaz in shock departure
Seems we pick up on every little news item on Google but not nearly as much with Yahoo.
Few recent news stories on Yahoo!
Yahoo! European president Chappaz in shock departure
LONDON - Yahoo! Europe has been rocked by the departure of president Pierre Chappaz, who has quit after just two months in the role.
Yahoo! raises the stakes in China
BEIJING Yahoo, which operates the world's second most-used Web search engine, at the end of this month will offer China's 27 million broadband subscribers the company's first service to combine mail and instant messaging as it tries to win market share in the nation.
Yahoo! Europe pre-installs icons
Yahoo! Europe is pre-installing the icons for Y! homepage, Yahoo! Messenger and Yahoo! Personals on Sony VAIO notebooks and desktops in a distribution agreement with Sony Europe. The
Yahoo! Unveils Local Job Search
Yahoo! Inc. on Tuesday launched a local job search for people unwilling to move, or for companies looking for talent close to their facilities.
The new service is in response to Yahoo's experience that more than half of all businesses prefer to only look for job candidates that live nearby and know their business, the Sunnyvale, Calif., Internet portal giant said. The job-advertising service will cost companies between $39 and $275 per listing, depending on geography and the number of listings purchased.
Microsoft to Offer a Media-Player-Free Version of Windows by January
Microsoft have been forced by a European court to provide a media player free version of Windows that will be available in Janurary according to Mary Jo Foley threadlinked above.
Talking of the Judge in question she said:
He denied Microsoft's request that the ordered remedies (including the unbundling of Windows Media Player from Windows) be postponed. Whether or not Microsoft appeals his denial, the Redmond software giant said it will deliver to European OEMs starting in January a Windows-Media-Player-free version of Windows. Microsoft also will publish communications protocols, including some heretofore-unpublished Windows Server ones, as part of the judge's order.
I'd like to know what protocols those are if anyone knows? And does this mean what i think it means, in that M$ are only required to have a version available that's playerless or that all versions should come without the player?