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December 2007

25 posts from November 2007

If you aren't reading Chris Brogan's blog, why not?

200711301315Catching up on some blog reading I came across Chris Brogan's great post "Consider Your Media-as-Business Strategy" and yesterday's "Three Untapped Values of Social Networks". If you are working with social media (or thinking about it...) and aren't reading Chris's blog, I would strongly suggest you give it a chance. He's a great writer with great insight.

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Next week - Internet Identity Workshop 2007B in Mountain View, CA

200711301235As I've written here (and on Disruptive Telephony) in the past about the need for improved management of our online identity, I'm looking forward to seeing what comes out of the Internet Identity Workshop on Monday - Wednesday of next week in Mountain View, California. We need to get it right. If you are out there in the area and can attend, I'd highly recommend it. (I won't be there as I'll be up in Vancouver at IETF 70.)

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Open Web Awards - What sites would you nominate for "Niche and Miscellaneous Social Networks"?

200711281322What sites would you nominate for "Niche and Miscellaneous Social Networks" for the Open Web Awards? As I described earlier, this site is one of the places you can nominate candidate sites. Please do so by leaving a comment with the word "NOMINATE" at the beginning followed by a dash and the site name. For instance "NOMINATE - Facebook.com".

Mashable.com doesn't yet have a post out with specific guidance, but in the information that they have sent to us to date they have indicated that this is basically "anything else"... social networking sites for communications professionals, anyone? hobbyists? specific fan sites?

Feel free to nominate any kinds of social networking sites that you think might fit this broad category. Please feel free to make multiple nominations - and if someone else has already nominated your site, please feel free to leave another comment with the same nomination. (Mashable.com has asked us to pass along the number of nominations we receive for each site.

Let the nominating begin! (Nominations will be closed at 11:59PM Pacific time on Tuesday, December 4th)

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Open Web Awards - What sites would you nominate for "Social Search"?

200711281322What sites would you nominate for "Social Search" for the Open Web Awards? As I described earlier, this site is one of the places you can nominate candidate sites. Please do so by leaving a comment with the word "NOMINATE" at the beginning followed by a dash and the site name. For instance "NOMINATE - Facebook.com".

As noted in the Mashable.com post on this category:

Despite the never-ending barrage of Google news and the dominant market share of the top four search engines, dozens of startups think they can do a better job at helping you query the Web. In fact, we rounded up a list of more than 40 of them a few months ago, and I personally test drove six so-called “people search engines” back in July. After checking out our prior coverage and maybe giving a few social search sites a try of your own, pick your favorite and make a nomination!

What sites and services do you like best? Please feel free to make multiple nominations - and if someone else has already nominated your site, please feel free to leave another comment with the same nomination. (Mashable.com has asked us to pass along the number of nominations we receive for each site.

Let the nominating begin! (Nominations will be closed at 11:59PM Pacific time on Tuesday, December 4th)

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Open Web Awards - What sites would you nominate for "Social News and Bookmarking"?

200711281322What sites would you nominate for "Applications and Widgets" for the Open Web Awards? As I described earlier, this site is one of the places you can nominate candidate sites. Please do so by leaving a comment with the word "NOMINATE" at the beginning followed by a dash and the site name. For instance "NOMINATE - Facebook.com".

As noted in the Mashable.com post on this topic:

We see a lot of startups enter the social bookmarking scene on a regular basis, many of which are never to be heard from again. But a few new interesting entrants have emerged this year in the battle to take on the likes of Digg, Del.icio.us, and Reddit. A few notables include Mixx, who offers a pretty neat social news/start page mashup, Thoof, who takes a collaborative approach to social news, and Streamy, who has garnered a lot of attention for its flashy Digg rival, though still in private beta. Meanwhile, anyone can now quickly and easily create their own social bookmarking sites using services like Pligg and coRank. Are any of these worthy of an Open Web Award, or are the big boys still the best?

What sites and services do you like best? Please feel free to make multiple nominations - and if someone else has already nominated your site, please feel free to leave another comment with the same nomination. (Mashable.com has asked us to pass along the number of nominations we receive for each site.

Let the nominating begin! (Nominations will be closed at 11:59PM Pacific time on Tuesday, December 4th)

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Open Web Awards - What sites would you nominate for "Applications and Widgets"?

200711281322What sites would you nominate for "Applications and Widgets" for the Open Web Awards? As I described earlier, this site is one of the places you can nominate candidate sites. Please do so by leaving a comment with the word "NOMINATE" at the beginning followed by a dash and the site name. For instance "NOMINATE - Facebook.com".

This category is by far my favorite and I'm looking forward to seeing what sites people nominate. As noted in the Mashable.com post:

Late last year, Newsweek predicted that 2007 would be the year of the widget. Boy, were they right! Aside from the usual buzz that surrounds the likes of Google, Facebook, and MySpace, this year was dominated by stories of companies coming out of nowhere with distributed applications to become household (well, at least Web 2.0 household) names. In fact, even USA Today has caught on to the trend, highlighting the rise of companies like iLike, Slide, and RockYou in today’s edition.

While flash widgets for things like slideshows and scrapbooks were the big success story in the first half of the year, much of the focus in the space shifted to Facebook applications this summer, with developers building tools ranging from the trivial to attempts to turn the social network into a serious business tool. Then, just last month Google threw its hat in the ring with the announcement of OpenSocial, an effort to align virtually all of the other major social networks against Facebook in application development.

In short, this should be a wide open category with dozens if not hundreds of companies that feed into the social networking ecosystem to consider nominating.

What applications and widgets do you like best? Please feel free to make multiple nominations - and if someone else has already nominated your site, please feel free to leave another comment with the same nomination. (Mashable.com has asked us to pass along the number of nominations we receive for each site.

Let the nominating begin! (Nominations will be closed at 11:59PM Pacific time on Tuesday, December 4th)

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Open Web Awards - What sites would you nominate for "Mainstream and Large Scale Networks"?

200711281322What sites would you nominate for "Mainstream and Large Scale Networks" for the Open Web Awards? As I described earlier, this site is one of the places you can nominate candidate sites. Please do so by leaving a comment with the word "NOMINATE" at the beginning followed by a dash and the site name. For instance "NOMINATE - Facebook.com".

As described in this post on Mashable.com, this category is for the large networks:

In last year’s social networking awards, Pete wrote “… we think that Facebook will continue to grow strongly in 2007.” That has certainly been the case, as the network has exploded in popularity since opening up to everyone that wants to join and launching a developer platform. However, recent concerns over its new advertising system and privacy issues have critics questioning the long-term prospects of the site. Meanwhile, MySpace remains #1 in terms of traffic, with other network such as Bebo, Hi5, and LinkedIn all sporting impressive growth in the past year.

Who do you like best? Facebook? LinkedIn? MySpace? Others? Please feel free to make multiple nominations - and if someone else has already nominated your site, please feel free to leave another comment with the same nomination. (Mashable.com has asked us to pass along the number of nominations we receive for each site.

Let the nominating begin! (Nominations will be closed at 11:59PM Pacific time on Tuesday, December 4th)

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Joining in the Open Web Awards - nominate your candidates in the posts that follow...

200711281322As readers are aware, I've been writing both here and over on my Disruptive Telephony blog about "mashups" and how the future of communication belongs to application platforms, open standards and such. Mashable.com has long been one of the main sites I've followed to stay up on what is happening in the rapidly evolving world of mashups and applications and so when they announced the creation of the OpenWeb Awards I thought I'd join in helping promote the awards. There are now 30 blogs joining in, including many that are much more popular than I am and whom I read all the time! As the site indicates, the Open Web Awards are about:

The Open Web Awards, hosted by Mashable.com, are the first ever online, open collaboration awards event, to recognize the best online communities representing web 2.0. This unique approach to an online event is about communities, so we've taken a collaborative approach to finding a winner, enabling other blogs and websites to take part.

I have committed to soliciting nominations and votes for the following categories (FOLLOW THE LINKS to nominate a site in a particular category):

1. Mainstream and Large Scale Networks
2. Applications and Widgets
3. Social News and Social Bookmarking
4. Social Search
13. Niche and Miscellaneous Social Networks

And I will shortly be posting notes about each of those soliciting nominations. PLEASE POST YOUR NOMINATIONS IN THE POSTS FOR THE INDIVIDUAL CATEGORIES so that the Mashable folks can easily find the nominations.

Thanks for your participation and assistance.

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FIR Book Review: "WordPress for Dummies" - November 27, 2007

Earlier today I participated in a audio book review of "WordPress for Dummies" with FIR co-host Neville Hobson (I am a weekly "correspondent" into the FIR podcast). The podcast is now online on the FIR site and I will also be cross-posting the podcast notice below as well. It was fun to do the interview with Neville and overall we both were very positive about the new book. (You'll hear my one main point of criticism, which was not so much with the content but with the way it was presented.) If you are working with WordPress - or thinking about it - I would definitely recommend you check out this book.

NOTE: Neville cross-posted the podcast notice on his blog and the book author has responded with a comment.


WordPress for DummiesOne of the most popular platforms for creating and managing a blog is WordPress. From its origins in 2003, WordPress has grown to be the largest self-hosted blogging tool in the world, used on hundreds of thousands of sites and seen by tens of millions of people every day.

A new book, WordPress For Dummies, has just been published, with explanations in plain English about WordPress and how to use it.

Written by Lisa Sabin-Wilson, WordPress for Dummies covers blogging basics, choosing a hosting solution or setting up a host, developing blog content, syndicating blog posts with RSS, launching a specialized blog (including podcasting, photoblogging, mobile blogging, and videoblogging), and even earning revenue. It includes help on every aspect of installing and using WordPress, illustrations from real-world WordPress blogs, step-by-step tutorials on key topics, and insights from bloggers who use WordPress.

FIR co-host Neville Hobson and FIR correspondent Dan York discuss their take on the new book, looking at various aspects of the overall content, and concluding with their recommendation about the book.

download for immediate release podcast

Download the review here (MP3, 12.6MB, 27mins 37 secs), or sign up for the FIR Book Reviews RSS feed to get it and future reviews automatically. To receive all For Immediate Release podcasts including the twice-weekly Hobson & Holtz Report, sign up for the full RSS feed.

Listen to this podcast now:

Voxeo
If you have comments or questions about this podcast, or suggestions for future interviews, email us at fircomments@gmail.com; or call the Comment Line at +1 206 222 2803 (North America) or +44 20 8133 9844 (Europe); or Skype: fircomments; or comment at Twitter: twitter.com/FIR; or at Jaiku: fir.jaiku.com. You can email your comments, questions and suggestions as MP3 file attachments, if you wish (max. 3 minutes / 5Mb attachment, please!). We’ll be happy to see how we can include your audio contribution in a show.

Podsafe intro music - On A Podcast Instrumental Mix (MP3, 5Mb) by Cruisebox.

WordPress for Dummies by Lisa Sabin-Wilson
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Inc
Paperback, 384 pages
Published in November 2007
ISBN: 978-0-470-14946-1
Available online now from Amazon.com and other outlets.

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Blogging has been a bit light here recently... but that should be changing...

Longtime readers may have noticed that my pace of blogging has decreased of late. Don't worry.. I'm not fading out. I've just been sucked into the vortex of the WordPress MU implementation I'm doing for my new employer, Voxeo. The good news is that there is light at the end of the tunnel... and it's not an oncoming train! Seriously, the implementation has gone very well and soon I'll be able to provide some links to what I've been doing.

I'll also finally be able to get back to doing a bit more writing... my queue right now of posts to right is incredibly huge!