Friday, November 30, 2007

Location Based Services

Here we are on earth: we live, work, travel where we choose. You are right here, right now, and maybe at this moment you need something or someone to help you accomplish what you are trying to do. You rub your magic lamp, out pops a genie, and grants you your wish.

Your lamp: it is actually your cellphone or computer...
Your genie: most likely works for Google, but possibly Yahoo, Microsoft? Altavista?? AskJeeves???
Your wish: if you are lucky is the top result of your search query....

Location Based Services, is a concept of providing you with relevant information based on where you currently are. Google recently released a beta update to their mobile Google Maps application which triangulates your approximate location using cell-phone tower information. Based on that information, you can easily imagine where they could be heading with this... Looking for the closest gas station? T-stop? Pizza shop? Done. Take it one more level further, the closest/cheapest gas-station, the train station with an incoming train any minute, the best slice of pizza around... This is where we are heading, and we will get there quicker than you can imagine...

The problems won't be technical, but more security and ethical in nature....

Saturday, November 03, 2007

open social, developers love reusability.

Not so long ago, Facebook released a public API and developers went crazy, marketers drooled, anyone with any interest in reaching the youth demographic started to rethink about how they can bring their products through this channel. A new type of web application was now available, a plugin to your existing Facebook account.
The problem?
Facebook controls the language, their own proprietary/new syntax FBML, they tended to break deployed code with their security/feature improvements, they control which applications users can browse and see/add. Worst of all, your 'Facebook applications' code could not be re-used easily.

Open social, Google and the rest of the gang answer... Trys to learn from some of Facebooks lessons.. and of course, one up them whenvever possible. Its still a plugin model, but if you know HTML/Javascript, you know how it works out of the box. You want to deploy the same application on multiple social networks? Ok. You want to maintain one set of code for your application? Who doesn't. Time will tell where open social goes -- but my guess would be further than FB's API.... And if Microsoft didn't now have a stake of Facebook, FB would maybe consider supporting it sooner.

Developers buy some coffee beans and grab a few cases of your favorite caffeinated soda -- It's going to be a wild next few months.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Bostons Best

This post will be about Boston, and why I love my home city. Typing on my cellphone wont cut it, so for now i leave you with a picture of the eve!

Update: (Few months later...)
Well, it's a bit colder now... but being an avid snowboarding fiend sort of makes this cold weather make me feel like I am in my element.. Well I was born up in Maine. Boston in the winter is cold, you dress for it, and just deal with it -- The train gets you into the city quickly, I can hop out on the commuter rail to enjoy a nice evening at the beach in Gloucester... or if I'm working late, just hop over a few stops within Boston. Driving in, I guess is a different story... I've done it once, and that was enough to not do it again... On the train, the time is yours to read, think, write, or just zone out to some of your favorite music. Not to mention the environmental impact and cost of commuting by car.... Once you are in town, getting around is quick. Being frugal, Taxi/Limo are not usually the norm. Walking preferred, but sometimes wind up using my monthly T pass to get around a bit further quickly... Coffee, get your fresh beans at your favorite shop. Restaurants, I have a good one for each day of the week, or even month to try out... I bring in left-overs whenever possible, but it allows for the occasional lunchtime splurge (hey, after-all mantinee 's are cheaper than primetime). Fridays vegetable market deals, Northends Ernesto pizza, Chinatown's Pho Pasteur's noodle soup, West Ends Vivo Burritos, Downtowns Al's subs, Artu's of Charles St's prosciutto mozzarella, Scollay's squares Beacon Hill elegance -- Ok, I guess I can go on about food for a while... Amante amare, no?

I think I save the rest of the city's great characteristics for a future post, I'm now feeling pretty hungry...