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Friday, November 19, 2010

Trimming The Fat On Social

A new social network, like we haven't heard that before, has emerged that aims to trim your friends list to a mere 50 people. Imagine!

Path is the brainchild of former Facebook executive Dave Morin and is "a photo-centric social hub that limits the number of friends you can have to 50."

The number is in fact based on an Oxford University Professor's research. Professor Robin Dunbar suggests that 150 is the maximum number of social connections that the human brain can sustain and that 50 is roughly the outer limit for our personal networks.

The average Facebook user has 130 connections but very active users, with very fragile egos, can have an average of 1,000 "friends".

"Facebook set out to be a social network of the real world full of friends and acquaintances together," said Mr Morin.

"Facebook is about society and I think the need we are seeing at Path is that people still want to share more and share more openly with the people they trust the most and that is why we put this 50 limit on the service."

Path's vice president of business development Matt Van Horn says "Networks have grown to become too large in scale and that means people start sharing with people they might not trust or truly know. That influences their sharing behaviour and changes entirely what they are willing to post and share online"

Check out the BBC article, Path seems to have a lot of heavy weight investors and former Facebook players. The beauty is it seems to be centered around mobile as opposed to a website that supports mobile. iPhone is supported now and the company plans to release android and Blackberry versions soon.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

More Free Wi-Fi On The Horizon?

A few weeks ago I made a couple of hour journey for a shopping trip out of Province. During my shopping I found myself in a Costco wondering the aisles in search of Christmas gifts when I happened upon a display for the flip video minoHD priced at $99.00 Canadian. Double take ensued and I whipped out my smartphone and waited patiently as my cell provider pulled down the website... $207.00 Canadian... sold!

I didn't really need the camera, I owned a flip Ultra and my Canon S5-IS takes wonderful video, not HD but very good non the less. My point, I would not have made this purchase had I not known that the manufacturer's site was selling this very product for more than twice the price of the camera within my very grasp.

To that end, here is an interesting article in the Globe and Mail regarding retailers and their thoughts on Wi-Fi.

Love the minoHD by the way. It's smaller, lighter, and has a built in rechargeable battery. I carry it with me all the time and the output is really quite good. I mean for $99.00 I just couldn't walk past!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

As Expected...

Facebook as expected announced "Facebook Messages" yesterday, a service meant to consolidate all of your online communications into one place and provide you with a more social communication platform. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook's co-founder and Cheif Executive Officer, says he got the idea after talking to high school students a few years ago. Claims are that young people have e-mail accounts but don't use them very often and while I'll buy that, having two teens myself, I don't see business rushing to Facebook to host their corporate e-mail, nor do I trust Facebook with my serious communications. Sure I use the site, as do a reported 499,999,999 others, but let's face it, Facebook has a less than stellar reputation with keeping our data personal and I don't see this as an e-mail killer as stated by some analysts.
“They just made it so much more compelling to center my communications on Facebook rather than anywhere else,” said Charlene Li, an analyst with the Altimeter Group. “Google, Microsoft, Yahoo should all be worried.”
Really Ms. Li? You truly believe that we all want to dump Gmail in favor of a site that now will let us send our most important communications and play Farmville... btw, I'm glad I didn't invest in all of the 'great' ideas had by high school students. But then again, I'm no Mark Zuckerberg and time will tell whether Facebook Messages compels us to waste more time on his site and push Facebook's user base to greater heights.

Read more about the launch at

Monday, November 15, 2010

Facebook To Announce Gmail Rival?

Facebook is hosting a "special event" today in San Francisco, and much of the speculation is pointing to an e-mail service to compete with Google's Gmail. The two companies have been at odds lately with Google banning Facebook from importing G-mail users contact lists after Facebook refused to allow the export of it's user's friends and contacts.

According to TechCrunch Facebook's new project codenamed "Project Titan" is being called the "Gmail killer".

With so little regard for personal data Facebook will not be my choice of web based mail providers, Gmail is quite simply the best. That said, with half a billion users Facebook is bound to get the less technical amongst them to drink the kool-ade and jump on board. 

Source: BBC

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Lunch On Wheels Fueled By Tweets

There was a time when mobile caterers rolled up to a spot and wailed on the horn to bring out the customers, now they tweet their whereabouts and let the cash box fill up. Wired has compiled a few of the more notable "Tweetcarts" like the original @kogibbq. I love to see businesses use technology in new ways to rack up sales... now if only these mobile businesses would start using community-based digital signage  :)