Archive for Internet

The Impact of Microblogging

twitter

Micro blogging allows it’s users to post quick bytes of information on the internet and lets people share information with the whole internet. The most popular micro blogging platform is obviously twitter, and has made a major change on how people can get information all around the world.

Not only do individuals utilize micro blogging for announcments and personal messages, but, many businesses use it for marketing and public relations because it is a direct link to potential customers. In fact, many companies use iot for support so people can ask questions and get answers all over micro blogging. People can use micro blogging anywhere from computrs, cell phones and PDAs so it allows people to send information from anywhere in the world. This makes micro blogging a universal communication method that can spread information anywhere and everywhere! This makes it an extremly powerful tool because it is extremly flexible and I believe it will be crucial for sharing information and spreading news of major events like natural disasters. In fact, during the last tsunami, in Southeast Asia, one of the first ways people got word of  the tragic evennt. This will be a rising trend in the future because major news outlets are evn using Twitter asnd other services to blast news headlines.

In conclusion, because of how micro blogging can be accessed and updated from anywhere in the world, and from a wide variety of platforms, it will be a new major part of how people gain informaztion and can become a great early response system because posts are instant and can be viewed by millions of users.

Is Streaming Music The Future?

There are numerous websites that allow a user to stream music over the internet and listen to more music than the azverage listener owns. However, with the current technology we have I do not think this will become a standard method of listening because most people like to own their songs and albulms.

This new model would allow people to listen to as much new music as they want for a flat fee. However, what if people are somewhere whee they cannot get online then they are without music and that does not work for me. The issue is that the iunternet is not accessible  everywhere yet so there are places where people would not be able to access their music, making this subscription model not feasible right now. For now the subscription model only works if you are infront of a computer or connected to WiFi. I believe the only way that this could work is if music players havebuilt-in cellular radios that allow them to access the internet over cell phone towers however, there would be latency and buffering so, buying music is still the best method and makes listening to music simple and enjoyable

General-Purpose Forums are No Longer Viable

In the early days of the computer and the internet, before the emergance of instant messaging, blogs and socail networks there were fourms, where people could discuss  anything the want with anyone in the world. It was a great consept because people could help each other,  share ideas and have a discussions with people around the world! However in this new web 2.0 world these general-use, are no longer the best method of communicating with people on the internet.

In these modern times,  people use social networks to communicate and micoblogging. For example, if I wanted to know what program I should use for Twitter on my Mac, I could just put it out on my Twitter feed and then assign a hash tag #twitterappmac and then search and find everyone’s results. This is much better than having an additional web account, and  having to go through a confusing forum interface. People now live on social networks that allow you to do many things and make them think forums are no longer worthwhile.

The only type of forum that I believe still has some merit is a forum with a very specific purpose, like a specific piece of technology or a specirfic operating system. This is in fact how the Linux community communicates because development of Linux is very community driven and it also serves as community-driven support because they allow users to help each other troubleshoot. One of the best forums is Internet Tablet Talk which is a forum all about the Maemo Internet Tablets made by Nokia. This is a thriving community of Maemo users and still keeps itself viable.

The forums that let you talk about what ever you want are now a thing of the past and the only type of forum that will be able to become sucessful is one that focuses on a single product and because of that has a very focused topic and has more potential of getting a dedicated user-base because they are using it to learn not just for simple entertainment.  Forums for the most part are no longer valid and are better replaced by social networks.

Web Services I Cannot Live Without!

With all the amazing web services available now there are some that I do not think I can function without now and these are the services that I need to continue to remain productive online:

Gmail:

Gmail is probably my primary web tool because I live in my email and gmail makes it very easy to check all my various email accounts with ease!

Google Calendar:

Google Calendar is not only what I use to organize my life but, also what I use to organize my blog posts and I have it sync to my Nokia N800 because it keeps my busy schedule organized.

Facebook:

Although Facebook is much more of a fun network, I find it to be very userful to communicate with friends and kep in touch with people far away!

AIM:

AIM is a great instant messenger and makes chatting great and a major communication asset.

Flickr:

Since I have been taking so many pictures recently and I want to share them with my friends and family Flickr is the best site to share pictures over the internet and Flickr Pro is an even better service!

Google Docs/Spreadsheet:

Google Docs is a great basic Wordprocessor, Spreadsheet and Presnetation tool all based in the clouds and lets you collaborate with other users. Although it is as not as powerful as Microsoft Word, which I use for more formal purposes, it is great for planning with people and planning out projects.

Google Reader:

Google Reader is my favorite way to read all my RSS feeds and get news. It provides a nice “River  of News” that makes reading news anytime easy and elegant.

Twitter:

Twitter is a great social tool that I use not only to keep my friends up-to-date with what I am doing but, I also use it to market website I am workingon and it is an extremly valuable marketing tool.

If any of these services went down I would have to make major augmentations to make web life and adapt to live without them but it will certainly not be easy.

The Best Sites to Buy Technology

Technology has become more and more crucial to people’s daily lifestyles however; buying gadgets can be expensive if you do not know what sites give you the best deals. In this post, I will list you the websites that give the best deals online which also happen to be the sites that I check whenever, I am in the market to buy a new gadget. I buy the majority of my gadgets by ordering them over then Internet because I can save a lot of money as long as I don’t need it right away. For example, I ordered a 16 Gigabyte SDHC memory card and it was only $30 from Newegg while if I went to a retail store with the same $30 I would only be able to buy a 4 GB memory card. I find it ridiculous that I get ¼ the capacity for the same price just because it is slightly more convenient.

It is for this reason that I recommend buying technology online because as long as you do not need it immediately, you can get an amazing deal and maybe get even more for less money! The following websites are the websites that I personally use when I want to buy a new gadget:

1.    Newegg
Newegg.com is usually my first stop because they usually have the best deals and they have a wide variety of products. In addition, they have great customer service and their deliveries usually arrive within three days! Newegg also has bargain deals and a recommendation engine that recommends products based on what you bought and what you looked at.
2.    Tiger Direct
Tiger Direct is usually my second choice and although the prices are not as affordable, they are still better than most retail stores. Tiger Direct has most of the same features that Newegg does and is a great option if Newegg does not have the product you want or you are looking to see if the price you found is the best option.
3.    Amazon
Amazon.com is one of the biggest online marketplaces and not only sells their own products but, also allows anyone to sell their own property. It has the same features but, because of the fees vendors usually need to increase the cost of products because they want to make a profit and cover their fees.

The process that I usually take is I look for the product on all three sites and then buy from the website that has the best price. I hope that everyone who read this article uses my suggestions and get better prices on the technology you want.

Why Firefox is the Best Web Browser

There are so many web browsers available but, there is on that is significantly better than all the rest. Mozilla Firefox is the greatest Web Browser currently available. Firefox has so many advantages over other browsers from it’s extendibility with the thousands of add-ons available to get the most out of Firefox, to it’s superior speed to other browsers, Internet Explorer, Opera, Safari, Netscape and all other browsers are blown away!

First of all, Firefox is free and open source so if there are any problems, they can be fixed by anyone who knows how to code and can be submitted for approval to be released to all other users. In addition, users can type: about:config and tweak the internal settings of Firefox and optimize the browser. I would like to warn you all, that if you make a mistake with those settings it may make Firefox crash or just stop working so only make these modifications if you know what your doing. But, even without tweaking it, Firefox is still much faster than any other browser!

Another amazing part of Firefox is add-ons, which allows you to choose and install additional programs that extend the functionality of Firefox. This is my favorite part of using Firefox because I can integrate additional services into my browsing experience and makes using Firefox even better!

Similarly, Themes allow you to install different color schemes and icons schemes for Firefox and lets you make your browser your own! It makes you feel more at-home using a browser that has colors that you like.

With all these options and advantages it makes Firefox my sole web browser on all computers I use because of it’s flexibility.  Firefox allows the user utilize it to get what they want done.

There are too Many Social Networks

Myspace, Facebook, Stumbleupon, LinkedIn, Flickr, Digg, Friendster, Youtube, and Twitter are just some of the many Social networks on the Internet open for membership. The problem is that because of the growth of social networking there are so many amazing services available online, and it makes it too difficult to keep all these services up-to-date. I, like many other people, have a habit of signing up for new social networks as soon as I can. Then, after a while, I can’t keep up with all my social profiles and certain accounts become dormant since I could not keep track of all the profiles.

Since the dawn of the Web 2.0 bubble, social networks spring up all over the Internet. Some are improvements of other services while others, are all new innovative services.  There is already such an excess of web services and it is hard to tell which is the best and even worse there are so many general-use social networks like Myspace and Facebook and it is very hard for users to connect with all their friends who use a variety of services. The inconvenience of having all these networks to keep up-to-date defeats any benefits of using the services in the first place. There also many single-purpose services like Flickr and Twitter, that do only one thing and in some cases they do that service extraordinarily well, like Flickr.     Meanwhile, there are many other services that are not that great and are not worth getting an account with.  The other problem, is that certain types of social networks like video networks are a dime a dozen, and many of them are just not as good as others.  But, even with all these services, they still each have their own separate account and cannot integrate with one-another for the most part. Facebook, has recently added applications that allows integration with other web services and allows you to merge accounts without actually merging them.

General-purpose networks like Facebook have the functions of many other services like, video, photos and chat. However, Facebook photo does not offer nearly as many features as Flickr as an example. I use many social networks, but, for my general purpose social profile, I use Facebook, because it simply has the best features and with Applications, it allows you to integrate you Facebook profile with many other social networks.

My recommendation to anyone who is considering creating a social network, is to only develop it if it is an original idea or if it has major advantages over existing services of a similar nature.  Even then, if the service already exists, it will be white noise to most people because they already have an account with that service.

I believe that for social networks to continue to thrive, they need to utilize more syndication of content, between networks and make APIs for developers to be able to make the best connection tools. I also think technologies like, OpenID that allow you to use one single login to access many services.

Is Snail Mail Still Necessary?

With as many people who use email as their primary communication tool, I think that delivered postal mail better known online as “Snail Mail” is no longer necessary. I cannot remember the last time that I sent a written letter, while I send at least 2 e-mails everyday! Even important mail like bills can now be paid online with a credit card! The Internet can be used to send both card and share pictures, which are, even more things that do not need to be sent by postal mail. Money can be transferred or gifted via Paypal or any other similar service. The other advantage of communicating over the internet is that messages are received instantly while, postal mail takes at least 2 days to be received.

One service that needs to continue is for physical packages because that cannot be done any other way currently.  But, that will have to continue still!

Can Retail Stores Compete with E-Commerce?

As I mentioned in my Best Sites to buy Tech article, I buy as much as I can online because the prices are so much more reasonable and as long as I can wait for it to be delivered it is a much better deal. The problem is, now that E-commerce has become so prevalent, less people buy from retail stores and buy more online and makes it much harder for retailers to stay in business. E-commerce offers almost anything you need and for lower prices because they do not need to pay rent to keep a physical store or pay people to operate the store.

In my opinion is that in order to keep people from buying most of their goods from the Internet and support retail stores, the stores need to reduce their profit and cut back so that they can stay competitive with the online retailers. The other change they need to make is to offer more options because online retailers offer hundreds of thumb drives and provide a wide range of pricing options. Meanwhile, retail stores might only have 3 to 5 options and a much more limited price range.

Retail stores that I think will survive are places like pharmacies that cannot operate online due to the risk of people fraudulently attempting to get pills. I also think that retail stores that are more experiences and not just walk-in and buy. The best example is the Apple store, which is a great environment to try out and buy products. I also think stores that have day-to-day necessities like food, clothing and shelter will remain open because people do not want to wait 3-5 days for a carton of milk. All-in-all retail stores need to make a major change in order for them to compete with online retailers.

Why I got Flickr Pro and why you Might Consider It

Originally, I did not see why people would spend $25/year for Flickr Pro just to post pictures online. That was of course, before I began using Flickr originally as a Free user and discovered how powerful it was and how enjoyable and simple it was to share your pictures!

At first I decided I could try Flickr out at first and use a free account and see if it would be necessary for me to pay for the Pro account.  However, because I had a free account I was limited to only uploading 100 Megabytes each month and because of that I would have to stagger the pictures that I upload to get the best pictures online and hold off on the lower-quality images until the next month. I also could only make 3 sets, which group pictures from similar events or similar subject matter. This was not too much of a problem until I got my new Cannon Powershot 1100IS, which takes much higher resolution, pictures to significantly larger, file sizes. These two factors were huge in my decision to get Flickr Pro.  Sets were essential for me because I like to have everything organized and easy to find.  I thought about if for a long time but, then I realized it was totally worthwhile for me with as many pictures I take and would like to share with my friends and family.

For anyone who is considering getting Flickr Pro I recommend trying the Free account first and see if you want the extra features and if you do then go ahead and buy Flickr Pro.  For $25 /year you get unlimited picture storage which I think is an unbelievable value to you.  Flickr is great for casual photographers and if you are a more serious photographer, then you are probably better off with paying for Flickr Pro!

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