Monthly archive

August 2005 - page 2

Slowed to a (Google) crawl

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I’ve been a long-time fan of the Google Desktop app, and quickly installed the new release this morning. Since much of the language in their individually customized news service had a lot of similarity to ours (although ours will be limited to activity within our suite of services), I spent more time playing with today it than I should have.

I’m no software geek, but there’s one piece of the package that is annoying as the worst adware, and seems to be pointless (at least to me as the end user).

The program slows up my computer pretty badly. Or perhaps I should say one aspect of it does– there is a .exe file called GoogleDesktopCrawl that uses up the bulk of my CPU. (See screenshot in continuation.)

What’s interesting is that you can quit the process without the rest of the program ceasing to work.

What’s even more interesting is that the screenshot below tells me that Google apparently expected people like me to figure this out and try to remove it.
Crawl2_1

So, gearheads, what is the purpose of that app? I would have guessed indexing, but this still occurs even though my whole system is indexed.

Keep Reading

The real difference

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This Vin Crosbie post has been kicking around in my queue for awhile. It’s a must-read from one of the industry’s new media pioneers, reflecting some of the wisdom of one of his mentors, Ben Compaine.

Crosbie unknowingly hits upon the thing that separates what we’re doing from other open (or at least semi-permeable) media efforts:

I believe this to be natural and ineluctible evolution for media
technologies. Today, most people have to satisfy their individual mix
by
visiting a number of websites, TV channels, publications,
blogs, podcasts, etc.. Yet, I believe that as more individualized
(i.e., ‘personalized’) media appear in the future, their individual
mixes will be delivered to them. The role of media.

Why the revolution always happens outside the walls

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Another Jeff Jarvis post, this one on Bubble Generation, gives some insight as to why companies like ours come onto the market, and why incremental change just ain’t enough.

From the book BubbleGeneration blog:

Sometimes, when industries are being disrupted by radical
innovations, you have to rely on intuition – and have the confidence to
build analysis on it.

Like media: looking at the innovation
landscape, and seeing Blogger, Technorati, podcasing, OurMedia,
Wikipedia, OhMyNews, etc, it’s not exactly following a risky hunch to
understand that micromedia is going to fundamentally reshape media
economics in simple ways (namely, that supply explodes relative to
demand, and so media deflation is an almost unavoidable short-term
consequence). What’s far riskier, if you ask me, is relying on metrics
that read obsolete industry economics – metrics that are themselves
about to be disrupted.

Hmm. Metrics like circulation? Like readership? Like pageviews?

Jarvis sums it up:


It’s not just that you get distracted by the cash but you also get misled by measuring success and failure by old metrics.

Changing ad patterns

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Yesterday, as a result of a minor car repair turned major, April and I found ourselves outside our neighborhood with a couple hours to kill. Being that said car repair made shopping sound like folly, and it is Dallas in August, we decided the best thing to do was to hole up in an air conditioned movie theater.

Fortunately, we had a newspaper in the backseat. I picked it up to find the movie listing for the United Artists Theater that I knew was around the corner.

No ad. No listing.

I wasn’t completely shocked– I’d talked to the owner of a suburban theater chain who doesn’t run in the paper because he’s found that more of his customers use online services for movie info.

Via Jeff Jarvis, this looks to be another tidal wave about to hit the traditional media.

One broken media business about to jettison another. Something inherently not ironic about that, isn’t there?

Live better here(And that's an order!)

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Those who read yesterday’s post on our short-form business plan might pick up today’s DMN and think we’ve been co-opted. There’s a nice big friendly colorful insert about how the DMN is going to make you "Live better here."

It all starts with a letter from Jim Moroney detailing the vision: New localized Metro; More Neighbors sections; a High School Sports Section; Lifestyle Magazines and a revamped, seemingly daily GuideLive. It all wraps with the line:

And the changes? They’ll come with your paper.

There’s nothing apparent on their website about the changes. A search for "Live Better Here" on dallasnews.com delivers the following result:

500 Servlet Exception

The business card test

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I’ve often heard people say that one test of the clarity of a business vision is whether or not you can summarize the whole proposition on the back of a business card. (I personally prefer the cocktail napkin approach.)

Along with our new logo, we’re getting new business cards that actually have a physical address, phone number, etc. And, we endeavored to explain this whole ambitious plan on the back.

How’d we do?

Bizcard_back_2

Asking the right questions

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Relevance has become the new theme of all of our propaganda (and hopefully our product). It’s on other minds too.

In the midst of the pissing match between Yahoo! and Google over search size, Danny Sullivan at Search Engine Watch challenges the behemoths to report instead on relevancy:

I cannot believe we’re
going through this again. This is Search Engine Size Wars VI, by my
count. It’s absurd. It’s annoying. It’s a friggin’ waste of time.
Instead of advancing to a commonly accepted relevancy figure, the
search engines want to keep us mired in the mud of who’s biggest.

Who’s biggest really
doesn’t matter, as I and others have written so, so, so, so, so many
times before. Reasons? There are many. How about…

  • You need the whole haystack! Here, if I dump it all on your head, can you find the needle now?
  • If you have lots of documents but they are all near duplicates of each other, is that good?
  • How much of a document have you indexed — 101K, 500K, 1MB?

Linkprops to the always relevant Fred Wilson.

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