Thursday, May 08, 2008
On Tuesday at the eMetrics Summit in San Francisco, our good friend John Marhsall, now with Market Motive, gave a mildly technical but extremely accessible talk on the ins and outs of RSS and feed metrics. The best part, frankly, was that (unlike some of the other analytics chatter), I actually understood it! His incontrovertible takeaway (one and only one key point) was: "Use Feedburner."
Fortunately, thanks to Cory Kleinschmidt and his technological alacrity, we installed that baby a few years ago, so I was able to dig into some stats. I discovered something that may not shock you. People do consistently subscribe to feeds, on a really nice ratio to the number that actually visit the site on a given day. My analysis shows that we get a good number of new signups with each "significant" post. A "significant" post might be a post that would be read by more people than usual. For example, one that gets quality link love from a popular site that explores Memes in Tech (for example), particularly on a Monday. End result: we think we should post a bit more often, on topics of substance. So the posting renaissance shall continue until further notice.
We may branch out a bit, though. You get tired of posting on all the same topics, so we'll try to get back to some reviews and comments on the hot features and apps owned by the major portal (type) companies, and our sense of the user response & growth trajectory of same. Now that the search wars are in some sense drawing to a close, maybe the real action really is in the rest of the stuff, like Flickr or Google Docs, that draws people into the portal company's general brand & functionality vortex. Come to think of it, there is so much more of that stuff going on now than in 2000 when we used to write about it... , that's probably why we don't write about it. Anyway, we'll try.
Just for fun. No promises. And don't worry about search being one-sided forever. We know some real competition in the search space is bound to heat up someday.
In other news, glancing at the Blogger ticker that shows recently updated blogs, I noticed a blog called "Beautiful Women Car Insurance." "Beautiful Women Car Insurance?," I asked myself. "I don't know what that is, but I think it should be something I should learn more about." Said learning did not go so well, however. It turns out the site was just another "splog," also known as "scraping SOB's," or "MFA Mofo's," depending on your regional dialect. An excerpt from the gripping dialogue completely unrelated to anything, let alone this idea whose time has clearly not yet come, "Beautiful Women Car Insurance":
"Comments cattle were real estate market in the status quo in the card-telephoto DC has the strongest 10x optical zoom capability, while supporting wide-angle 28 mm and OIS Optical Anti-Shake shooting, with 3-inch 230,000-pixel LCD. Property Tax: Logically property tax levy is essentially Jiefujipin move. However, the property tax against the property market speculation and excessive investment and consumption market is fully into the basic premise, once the market level is not high, the property tax in the fight against speculation and excessive investment and consumption, while also inhibit the normal pattern of the market / High-end consumer, leading to stabilize housing prices in the property market at the same time, a structural surplus, and perhaps one day people suddenly discovered that the market in full transition product, the property market instead of restricting a well-off one of the factors. Full competition in the industry, implementation of corporate real estate distributed welfare system. Customers considerable speculation the Group of public investment to consumption and cost, high-profit sectors to promote enterprise through a number of additional benefits in high-grade commercial housing for ordinary commercial houses and public consumption. Equity funds and real estate, real estate only with the ideal of stored-value"
Well, I think you get the gist. Can randomly chosen splog names actually result in new business ideas? I'm still trying to work out this Beautiful Woman Car Insurance angle, but I think it's going to be for men in luxury cars who total them looking at beautiful women. And this Infiniti lane departure warning technology had better not spread, or it's going to kill my whole business. That, or the optical zoom technology referenced in the above paragraph.
Labels: blogs, feed reader
Friday, February 09, 2007
Google's confirming publicly that they believe the current Internet may become choked by online video. This is related to a barrier to Google's growth -- one of the only serious ones -- that has been nagging at me for some time: globally, they don't own the pipes. Big utility monopolies still hold a lot of cards around the world. The smart money would likely partner with them. (We've noted in the past that this has been one of Microsoft's strategies globally -- taking stakes in utility companies.)
G's massive investment in infrastructure in the US is no doubt partly going to address this. It'll be fascinating to see how it unfolds. Net neutrality is at least a debate in the U.S. today. In some nations and economic zones, there are very different terms for the debate.
Meanwhile, Yahoo has released a mashup service extraordinaire, called Pipes. It's going to be worth a lot more study, but basically it provides an easy way for the layperson to pull disparate data sources into a web page -- like a smarter more agile feed reader? Kinda makes my head hurt: does it compete with Google Reader or supersede it? Some commenters are saying it's really nothing too new, and other products like RSS Bus would be better for those who are technically inclined. Stay tuned. (If you really know what you're doing: Jeremy Zawodny points to something called GData.)
And meanwhile meanwhile, over at Techcrunch, Arrington does something we apparently no longer make time to do: reviews and compares new Hotmail, new Yahoo Mail, and Gmail. All of these web 2.0 apps get the thumbs-up, but Google comes in at #1. That's about what I'd say. I actually use both old Yahoo Mail and Gmail, and don't particularly enjoy new Yahoo Mail. I'll likely consolidate everything in GMail, a decision I think you eventually have to make (one way or another, with Y or G) so you're using the same calendar and IM app and not confusing the hell out of yourself.
Mail, at least, we already use. Both Google's Co-Op and Yahoo's Pipes probably deserve weeks of our time, and here we are blogging about engagement rings and Ted Stevens. Time to tackle the to-do list. Also, posting will be light for the next week due to SES London.
Other random thoughts to wind up the week:
And Technorati's edgecraft: is it just me, or is calling a "buzz description" a "WTF" (as in "write a WTF for this query") pretty edgy? Edgy, I think. As I've told a few of you, my office building is owned by a commercial real estate company called WTF Group. Seeing that logo on the wall has gotten me through many a day.
Labels: feed reader, google, internet, net neutrality, online video, pipes, portals, readers, technorati, ted stevens, tubes
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