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Not Sure Which Twitter Lists To Follow? Listorious Has A Directory Of The Best Ones October 30, 2009

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Twitter Lists are rolling out today (although the feature is not quite turned on for everyone yet). The new feature lets users make lists of interesting people on Twitter, grouped together so that they are easy to follow.

But how do you find the best lists? Already, there is an independent directory service which is launching in tandem with Twitter Lists called Listorious. (Warning: it only fully works for people who have Twitter Lists enabled). Listorious offers a curated collection of lists across various categories such as media, humor, marketing, finance, and food. You can see the most popular lists, ranked by how many people follow them. It is also possible to search by tags, or just search lists in general.

So what are some lists you might want to check out? There’s Robert Scoble’s Most Influential In Tech list and another overlapping Tech Pundits list. I like this list of Venture Capitalists on Twitter. And of course, don’t miss out on following the entire TechCrunch Team with one click.

Listorious was developed by Gregory Galant, who is the man behind the Shorty Awards, which goes out to the “best producers of short content.” It is part of his company, Sawhorse Media.

via Not Sure Which Twitter Lists To Follow? Listorious Has A Directory Of The Best Ones.

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Official Google Blog: Surf’s up Wednesday: Google Wave update September 29, 2009

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Starting Wednesday, September 30 we’ll be sending out more than 100,000 invitations to preview Google Wave to:

We’ll ask some of these early users to nominate people they know also to receive early invitations — Google Wave is a lot more useful if your friends, family and colleagues have it too. This, of course, will just be the beginning. If all goes well we will soon be inviting many more to try out Google Wave.

Some of you have asked what we mean by preview. This just means that Google Wave isn’t quite ready for prime time. Not yet, anyway. Since first unveiling the project back in May, we’ve focused almost exclusively on scalability, stability, speed and usability. Yet, you will still experience the occasional downtime, a crash every now and then, part of the system being a bit sluggish and some of the user interface being, well, quirky.

There are also still key features of Google Wave that we have yet to fully implement. For example, you can’t yet remove a participant from a wave or define groups of users, draft mode is still missing and you can’t configure the permissions of users on a wave. We’ll be rolling out these and other features as soon as they are ready — over the next few months.

Despite all this, we believe you will find that Google Wave has the potential for making you more productive when communicating and collaborating. Even when you’re just having fun! We use it ourselves everyday for everything from planning pub crawls to sharing photos, managing release processes and debating features to writing design documents. In fact, we collaborated on this very blog post with several colleagues in Google Wave.

Speaking of ways you could potentially use Google Wave, we’re intrigued by the many detailed ones people have taken the time to describe. To mention just a few: journalist Andy Ihnatko on producing his Chicago Sun-Times column, filmmaker Jonathan Poritsky on streamlining the movie-making process, scientist Cameron Neylon on academic papers and lab work, Alexander Dreiling and his SAP research team on collaborative business process modelling, and ZDNet’s Dion Hincliffe on a host of enterprise use cases.[…]

Finally, a big shoutout to the thousands of developers who have patiently taken part in our ongoing developer preview. It has been great fun to see the cool extensions already built or being planned and incredibly instructive to get their help planning the future of our APIs. To get a taste for what some of these creative developers have been working on, and to learn more about the ways we hope to make it even easier for developers to build new extensions, check out this post on our developer blog.

via Official Google Blog: Surf’s up Wednesday: Google Wave update.

Google Sites now works with third-party applications | VentureBeat September 26, 2009

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Google Sites, a tool for creating internal websites where your company can collaborate, can now work with the rest of your business software, Google says. The search giant is releasing an application programming interface (API) that lets applications move data in and out of the Sites service.

This follows other announcements by Google to make its applications, such as Gmail, compatible with outside software. In some cases, like the ability to synchronize Google Apps with Microsoft Outlook, the goal is to ease the transition to Google from other products. In others, like the Sites API, the point is to make Google work better with the other tools businesses use. It also means that the data you store in Google Sites isn’t locked-in if you decide to switch to different software.

Here are some ways the company says you could use the API:

  • Update Google Sites from third-party applications – e.g. your sales team’s Google Sites pages can update automatically when new leads are added to your customer relationship management system.
  • Migrate files and content from workspace applications like Microsoft SharePoint and Lotus Notes to Google Sites.
  • Export Google Sites pages, edit them offline, and re-import the updated content.
  • Export your sites, including every page revision, for backup.
  • Easily monitor changes across your important internal and public sites, all from a single gadget.
  • Push new content like changes to employee policies or a new corporate logo to any site on your domain, even sites created by individual employees.

Of course, not every one of Google Apps’s 175 million customers (such as VentureBeat) has the interest or resources to build their own applications using this API. But you might use applications built by other companies, such as LTech’s application for moving data from Microsoft Sharepoint to Google Sites.

via Google Sites now works with third-party applications | VentureBeat.

The TechCrunch50 List: the presenting startups | VentureBeat September 14, 2009

Posted by hruf in Enterprise 2.0, Internet & Communities, Mobile & Gadgets, Multimedia.
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TechCrunch50, which showcases 50 yet-unlaunched startups, kicks off today. Here’s a partial list of the companies that are demoing throughout today and tomorrow. There are a few ones that are still unreleased:

via The TechCrunch50 List: the presenting startups | VentureBeat.

Adobe kills low-end Photoshop, urges users online August 8, 2009

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Adobe Systems is discontinuing Photoshop Album Starter Edition, the lowest rung on its ladder of image-editing software products, and the company is nudging its users toward the online Photoshop.com site.

Adobe launched Photoshop Album Starter Edition in 2003 as a free, bare-bones image cataloging and editing package. Adobe discontinued the line, though, and support for it ended June 30.

So what’s the alternative? In a customer note, Adobe puts its online service front and center.

“As part of our commitment to providing customers with a free photo-editing solution, we have created Photoshop.com, an exciting new online service that lets you upload, organize, edit, store (up to 2GB free), and share your photos,” the note said. Afterward is a list of steps for exporting photos from the software to the Web site.

The move reflects the growing importance of Web-based applications even for software powerhouses such as Adobe. [..]

It should be noted that Adobe’s note also encourages customers to “consider an upgrade to Adobe Photoshop Elements 7,” the consumer-oriented software that right now costs about $37 including a $20 rebate on Amazon. Adobe also sells the combination of Photoshop Elements 7 and a one-year Photoshop.com Plus membership for $90. The Plus membership offers subscribers up to 20GB of storage, tutorials, album templates, and “creativity-inspiring ideas.”

via Adobe kills low-end Photoshop, urges users online | Underexposed – CNET News.

Google buys videotech firm On2, but YouTube costs aren’t as high as rumored August 5, 2009

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Google’s YouTube division is a victim of its own success. A source inside the company told TechCrunch that YouTube streams close to 1.5 billion video clips every day. That makes sense, if you think of it as everyone on the Internet watching one clip daily.

Google CFO Patrick Pichette told Fortune that the company now collects ad revenue on 13 percent of the clips it serves. Still, streaming videos to customers costs money. Video content on YouTube can run up to 100 megabytes per clip. YouTube has another bandwidth-eater: Its search engine, the company told Fortune, is now the second busiest on the Net after Google. (Customers upload 20 minutes’ worth of video to YouTube every minute, but that’s nowhere near the amount of outbound traffic.)

This is why Google has agreed to buy video bandwidth reducer On2 for about $106 million. On2’s main product is video compression technology for the Adobe Flash player YouTube uses to play videos. Compression technology analyzes a video stream and figures out how to reduce its size without losing video and audio quality.

For customers, On2’s tech may speed up the download time before a clip starts and reduce the total network traffic eaten up by watching lots of YouTube. For Google, On2’s big value add will be reducing the costs of serving a couple of billion clips a day by reducing the amount of network capacity required to transmit the video to customers.

On2’s technology could reduce network costs for YouTube enough to bring profitability in reach.

via Google buys videotech firm On2, but YouTube costs aren’t as high as rumored | VentureBeat.

Google adds layers to its mobile maps; multiple search capabilities July 23, 2009

Posted by hruf in Internet & Communities, Mobile & Gadgets.
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Google Maps’ mobile phone experience is becoming a richer experience with the addition of layers that you see public transit, Wikipedia entries or your friends’ location on Latitude. For example when coming to a new town, you can turn on a Wikipedia layer that lets you learn about notable sites nearby. Or you can turn on local search results to pull up restaurant or bar listings on your phone while you’re meandering around a neigborhood. To use it, load the Google Maps mobile application and hit the “2″ key or click “Layers” in the menu and you can turn various layers on and off.

In a separate development, Google Maps added the ability to do multiple searches so you can find gas stations or restaurants while looking for driving directions. Performing multiple searches can be time consuming if you’re looking for how to get to a destination but also stop at other places along the way. This functionality lets you turn on layers showing nearby eateries or supermarkets.

via Google adds layers to its mobile maps; multiple search capabilities | VentureBeat.

FriendFeed Blog: FriendFeed API v2: Real-time, OAuth, file attachments, and more July 20, 2009

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Next social network provider, which extends his open API:

Today we are launching version 2 of the FriendFeed API for beta testing. We focused on making the API simpler to use, and we added number of compelling new features:

* Real-time APIs – utilize long polling to get feeds in real-time, including search!

* Flexible sharing options – Direct message users. Share to multiple feeds.

* File attachments – Attach images, pdfs, spreadsheets, etc.

* OAuth support – Register your application now.

* Simplified response format – Your application doesn’t need to know the difference between a users and groups, how “friend of friend” works, or deal with hidden entries until you want to. We provide the HTML for representing entries so you don’t have to construct it. Authenticated responses include a list of possible commands on every feed, entry, and comment so you don’t have to do the detective work. […]

via FriendFeed Blog: FriendFeed API v2: Real-time, OAuth, file attachments, and more.

Startup 101: Introducing Our Serialized “How to Build a Startup” Book July 19, 2009

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ReadWriteStart is writting an interesting series about startups:

“Startup 101” is a serialized book about the thrills and spills of starting a Web technology venture. It will be a regular feature in our new channel ReadWriteStart, dedicated to profiling startups and entrepreneurs. Startup 101 is for first-time entrepreneurs who want to go through the whole startup life cycle – including raising money, building a valuable business, and making a lot of money by selling the venture or taking it public.[…]

This series is designed for Web technology startups. But if you are building a clean tech, bio tech, outsourcing, hardware, or other type of technology venture, we hope some of Startup 101 will be useful to you, too.[…]

The chapters/posts we have planned are as follows. In line with the iterative/agile model of the Web, we reserve the right to change the order and to add, delete, and alter chapters as we progress on this journey.

  1. 10 things to be clear about before you start
  2. Are you really an entrepreneur?
  3. How first-time entrepreneurs can work well with investors
  4. Creating your vision, mission, strategy, and plan
  5. Finding the right wave to ride (secular trends)
  6. Working booms and busts to your advantage (cyclical trends)
  7. Building your team pre-financing
  8. Building an advisory board
  9. Finding a URL and company name
  10. Company registration choices
  11. The Capital-Raising Ladder
  12. How to pitch to a VC or angel
  13. How not to get screwed by VCs
  14. Understand the scale vs. profitability trade-off
  15. Build an insanely great Web service
  16. Learn to negotiate and close
  17. How to be an effective executive
  18. How to hire an A-Team
  19. How to fire non-performers
  20. How to hit your numbers
  21. How to build age-appropriate processes
  22. Steps in building a brand
  23. How to scale without losing your shirt
  24. Maintaining focus, health, and passion during the grind-it-out phase
  25. How to build an effective board
  26. Planning your exit
  27. When and how founders should hire a professional CEO
  28. Read some great books for inspiration
  29. Negotiating your exit
  30. Congratulations! What’s next?

via Startup 101: Introducing Our Serialized “How to Build a Startup” Book – ReadWriteStart.

Guzzle.it: A Personalized News Dashboard for Any & All Topics You Love July 19, 2009

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Another day, another way to find, sort, and digest the firehose of online content. Right?

This time, we bring you something very exciting. Guzzle.it is one of the cleanest, coolest, most intuitive, most customizable news dashboards we’ve seen. It’s lightning fast to set up and makes finding and reading news and blog posts that are hyper-relevant very easy, indeed. It reminds us of a more personalized Alltop or one of the nifty, custom-built dashboards a tech journalist might have. Best of all, it allows for multiple fields of interest and creative layouts. Guzzle.it just might change how you read the Internet. […]

For example, I decided to sign up for news on tech, design, and rock & roll. I dragged, dropped, and renamed the topics and separators until I had the page layout that I thought would suit me best.

The initial page design I got was scannable, legible, digestible. Within seconds, I’d found out that Robert Plant was knighted, a whole bunch of really great fonts were available free on one website, and a post I wrote about startups was topping the charts for articles on entrepreneurs.

Awesome so far, no? But it gets even better.

via Guzzle.it: A Personalized News Dashboard for Any & All Topics You Love – ReadWriteStart.