Friday, February 22, 2008

Recession vs Dot Bomb

The linkage for supportive data is fairly loose on this recent article from Dana at ZDNet. Because banks are borrowing money and Microsoft made a bid for Yahoo, the sky is falling ala "Dot Bomb 2.0"? and worse, that Open Source is at the core?

I completely agree that business models utilizing open source are still evolving. Yes, the "open source" tag has some of the caché reminiscent of the old "e-commerce" one - but let's not confuse Marketing with Finance.

Only a few OS companies are as yet publicly traded. Anybody in the tech sector these days looking to IPO will go thru a lengthy process, and I sincerely doubt we'll see the triple digit first day closings that made the news in 1999 - 2000.

This is an overall recession, not the birth pangs of another dot bomb. NASDAQ is not laden with over-valued OS companies.

In fact, the inherent value of new pricing models brought about by open source companies may actually *benefit* from a mild recession if executed properly.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Democratic Party Superdelegates - Be Advised

With few exceptions, I have voted in every election since age 18. My first vote was cast from a booth in Upstate NY - in my own High School. I believed in the system, but over the years that belief changed.

The last several years in particular always resulted in choosing the "lesser of two evils". Campaigns and candidates generated such a negative, divisive environment - that it became less about who to vote for, and more about who to vote against. I hated what our democratic process had become, and more importantly, how it increasingly fractured the electorate. We compromised our principles instead of compromising to unify as Americans.

That cycle finally broke for me in 2008 with Barack Obama.

I know exactly where he stands on the issues, how his campaign is (and is not) funded, and can see not just the momentum - but the positive affect he will have for us. Finally, for my first time in 20 years, a candidate to cast a solid vote *for*. Don't take away this opportunity for me, for the Party, and for the Country.

Restore us to the core values on which this nation was founded. Listen to your electorate. Nominate Barack Obama for President of the United States.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Open Calais - semantic web's first serious analysis engine

Reuters top-down metadata generation Calais service is now open for anyone to use (commercial and non-commercial). According to their FAQ:
The Calais initiative seeks to help make all the worlds content more accessible, interoperable and valuable via the automated generation of rich semantic metadata, the incorporation of user defined metadata, the transportation of those metadata resources throughout the content ecosystem and the extension of it’s capabilities by user-contributed components.
However, this is about more than just tagging and sets the stage nicely for the first serious analysis engine ala Semantic Web. Plus, it complements the recent Google Social Graph efforts built on XFN / FOAF via “bottom-up” metadata transport features.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

A Kodak moment for Microsoft

With all the noise around Microsoft / Yahoo, I can't help but think of parallels. Is this part of something truly transformative for the Redmond gang, or will they follow in the footsteps of Kodak? Defending your business is one thing -- always being on the defensive is another, and usually indicates disruptive innovation at work:

© 2008 DLTJ / Peter Murray
a. A disruptive innovation reaches the point where it can satisfy the least demanding customers; least demanding customers drop the established, higher performing option on the basis of other factors (cost, convenience, etc.).

b. The established product exceeds the needs of the most demanding customers; sustaining innovations now fuel “performance oversupply.”

c. The disruptive innovation meets the level of performance required by the most demanding customers; those customers drop the established option on the basis of other factors.
Forces such as Open Source and Social Networking are far more profound than a shiny new search engine and portal site. Google is clearly seen as a threat, but is Microsoft aiming at the right target?

Or will Redmond, WA transform into another Rochester, NY?

Friday, February 1, 2008

Transplanting the garden with Google's Social Graph API

Leave it to Brad Fitzpatrick and the gang at Google to finally come up with an API for this. His video is worth the 2 minute investment to get a sense of where they're taking things. According to the docs page:
The Social Graph API now makes information about the public connections between people on the Web, expressed by XFN and FOAF markup and other publicly declared connections, easily available and useful for developers.
Excellent start to externalizing the graph as well as keeping it fully decentralized. Kudos to all involved!

All that glitters is not Social (Apps)

An article by Chris Williams on "facebook fatigue" references some interesting metrics supplied by comScore
The average length of time users spend on all of the top three sites is on the slide. Bebo, MySpace and Facebook all took double-digit percentage hits in the last months of 2007.
Seems that the glitter might be waning a bit more quickly than even I had thought. Time to get back to basics.