Posts for Tag: facebook

What?! Facebook acquires Blue Bottle.

Lost in the news about Facebook acquiring Gowalla is the news that Facebook has bought the mini-San Francisco/Brooklyn coffee chain Blue Bottle.

Don't know how to take this. Blue Bottle is my current go-to coffee spot. I like them because 1) they make great coffee and 2) they are an Oakland based small business. Now that they only are one of these things (and I'm not sure if the other thing will continue or not), I'm not sure I want to support a mega-corp whose other service I don't 100% agree with.

Apple blows away earnings numbers ... but let's all take a chill pill

As expected, Apple destroyed it's Q3 2011 earnings forecasts. It seems like nothing can bring down this juggernaut. But 15 years ago a little company called Microsoft was doing the exact same thing. Year after year, nothing could stop Microsoft's dominance of the computer industry. Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer would high-five at analyst meetings where they reported billions upon billions in profits every quarter. Today, Microsoft is still reporting billions of dollars each quarter in profits but they're no longer the king of jungle. But remember, everything is a cycle. It is with absolute certainty that I say Apple will one day falter and another company will step up to claim the crown. Whether it's Microsoft, Google, Facebook or some new entry, somebody will take them down. Such is life in tech.

How Mark Ruffalo and coffee showed me the value of Twitter over Google

I went to grab a coffee this afternoon at Blue Bottle in Oakland and the barista let me know a celeb was in the area - Mark Ruffalo. I have no real opinion about him as an actor. I think I've seen two movies he was in and thought he didn't add nor took away from my enjoyment of said movies. However, I'm always curious when movies or TV shows shoot in Oakland (Moneyball, Matrix Reloaded, etc) so I went to rusty-trusty Google and typed in "Mark Ruffalo Oakland". Nothing remotely relevant came up. Tried a few variations, adjusted some search parameters (only searches within 24 hours - one week) but still nothing that explains why Mark Ruffalo was in Oakland. I then popped over to Twitter and typed in the same keywords "Mark Ruffalo" and got these results:

As you can see, the 5th result down mentioned Mark Ruffalo and Sungevity, a solar startup down the street. Clicked on the link and BAM!, Mark Ruffalo sitting in a Tesla Roadster wearing a Sungevity hat. Looks like he was in the area not to shoot a movie but to pop into Sungevity for something or other.

This brings up my second instance where Twitter succeeded where Google (and other methods) failed to solve a problem/query. Over the July 4th holiday, I wanted to know if Blue Bottle was open on Monday, the 4th. Calling their number didn't help because it was a standard phone greeting offering hours of service during normal weeks but not holidays. Same for their website and any search I did about Blue Bottle and the 4th of July yielded no mention of hours. I then went over to Twitter and found Blue Bottle's account and BAM!, there you go.

Now these are just two specific instances and of course, I still do most of my general search on Google but it's been a long time since I last found the answer to a query outside of Google. It's a death by a thousand cuts for them as Facebook, Twitter, and others start chipping away at their defenses. Google looked unassailable, much like Microsoft 10-15 years ago. Today, there's only one product of Microsoft's that I use, Office. I've switched from Windows to Mac for my hardware, Windows Mobile to iPhone for my cell, and even Exchange to Google Apps for my businesses. The endless cycle of rise and fall in tech is unrelenting and no one is immune.

My last post on Facebook

Over the past few months, I've slowly started feeling as if my privacy controls on Facebook have been slowly tinkered with. Maybe it's because I've started getting a lot more friend requests from folks or maybe the latest Zuckerberg news got me skittish but I went to my privacy settings and sure enough some of my settings (or new settings) had been changed to "Friends of Friends" or "Everyone" from "Friends Only". It seems I'm not the only one either. To clarify, I won't deactivate my Facebook profile as I think it's still a great way to connect with old friends. I just won't be updating any more photos, statuses (stati?) or posts. I'm sure my Facebook contacts will appreciate having one less thing to read in their ever growing feeds.

My 2 cents regarding why teens don't use Twitter. Plus why I'm the worst customer for Facebook.

A few articles came out today re: why teens don't use Twitter. You can read the articles for yourself and I think they raise some valid points. Most of the folks I follow (and who follow me) on Twitter are people of my age group or older. I only have a handful of people in their teens or early 20's category who I follow and vice versa - all of which are family. My own humble opinion on why teens don't use Twitter? They just don't have the bandwidth (mental not data) to deal with yet another social network. Facebook (and before them MySpace) came on the scene before Twitter and people jumped in and love it. I know people who spend hours a day on Facebook. Adding another social networking site that somewhat does the same thing is just extraneous.
Now, for the second part regarding why I think I'm the worst customer for Facebook. I post to Facebook often via Posterous. That means I'm posting updates, pictures, videos, etc. However, I rarely actually go to Facebook (about once a month, maybe). All that media takes up space and when people view it, that takes up bandwidth. But I've never clicked on a Facebook ad once and it's probably looking like I won't any time soon. I don't "interact" with the service in a way that might derive revenue for them. Who knows, maybe they've baked people like me into their model but I'm sure they would prefer it if I was spending more time on the site itself.