Friday, November 28, 2008

Techboard's No 1 Black Friday Gadget

As black friday kicks the holiday splurge (not) off today we thought we'd challenge ourselves to come up with the Techboard Numero Uno Christmas gadget. Assuming you can afford it.

Ta ta......

It's Apple's Macbook Air that takes the podium. It's thin, slim, light, packs a real punch (thanks to the latest release) and is truly design-driven. It even makes your iPhone look clunky. And, it points the way to the next generation of computing - 'not about the storage'. It's the cloud.

And Happy Thanksgiving. We thank all our readers wherever you are.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Umee Rocks .tv

We've stumbled across another neat UK tech company whimsically name umee - yep, you and me. Because their software helps you and me share rich media at social networking sites.

That means they trot along with their box of tricks to big media companies (I think mainly newspapers for now) and help them post and share their content to social networks so when we see something (media) we like we can share it with our mates.

umee then take a slice of the ad revenues. OK. So they could help shift more content around social networks, potentially increasing stickiness while enabling old media to get in on the social networking act that they royally missed or stuffed up by buying Friends Reunited.

Sounds reasonably cool. I have but one issue - the content better be hot or I'll be damned clogging share cred with my busy, media savvy mates. But maybe that's just me.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

KickApps Kicks Ass

KickApps has just raised $14 m which in these markets means they kick ass! And they probably do. They hit Ning head on with a more open and customizable/modular platform which can socialize your site with community, video, photo-sharing and blogging for mainstream media companies as well as one man shows.

A combination worth looking at is Wordpress with KickApps. And bingo a blogging/content platform with social networking and media apps on steroids. One for would-be digital media entrepreneurs.

Those seeking a total community networking platform out of the box, drag and drop, with no programming skills - stick with Ning.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

What Does Linkedin Search Point To?

Linkedin have been busy the last month - with a new app store and an advanced search service tweaked to help (nearly 33 million of you) network. Network? Apparently so.

And these technical developments also reveal where Linkedin is heading. Now that they have network mass - the next phase for the professionals networking site will be services. Services which help professionals find each other more effectively, discover partners more easily and scout for talent. Sorry Recruitment folk.

In the end though Linkedin is all about extending members existing network. For new relationships and partnerships other Web 2.0 sites should perform better. For jobs see For creatives b-uncut. For innovators i-Revolution. You get the picture.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Windows Live Search Moving to

Windows Live Search looks set to be rebranded Kumo @ Apparently its Japanese for cloud or spider - struggling to get that connection (but thanks CNET). Either way any branding that isn't Windows Live Search should help - that and the new dude they hired from Yahoo to run their search division.

Mind you given the hash Yahoo have made of it I'm not sure he'd be top of my list - unless of course task numero uno is integrating Yahoo search post an acquisition. Now we're talking...

Friday, November 21, 2008

Perperitus Pioneers with Performance Management Software

UK based Perperitus is a pioneer in the emerging performance management software space. They have a nifty online service with a subscription model that delivers best practice performance dashboards across desktops and throughout the organization.

Their approach looks quite revolutionary and we like the way they model top performers in your company and then build knowledge based systems and process templates around a nifty Web 2.0 dashboard to improve the performance of other employees. They started with a sales dashboard (mashing top sales performer approaches with sales methodologies, info and tools) and now have performance management solutions in place for many other functions too.

And it looks like later next year they'll be offering a full DIY platform over the Web for any organization large or very small to build and tailor their own solution in matters of hours. Performance management and employee productivity should be hot in this down and out downturn!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Blackberry Storm Misses

The first Blackberry Storm revues are in (see CNET) and it seems like it's, well, a bit clunky. Clunky? Well, at least, squidgy. And the keyboards too small. Other than that its great - right. I guess I'll stick with my Blackberry Bold for now. No great storm here.

And iPhone challenger? Not. Vodafone/Verizon miss again...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bebo Founders Focus on

I met with one of the Bebo founders yesterday and chatted about a few things. It seems that life post the deal with AOL has the Birch brothers a little more relaxed. Not.

And their attention is swinging to Which is a simple way for people to remember birthdays. Need that. In addition to birthday reminders, absent minded users can set holiday and anniversary reminders (people need reminding about holidays??), send animated eCards and invitations, play games, send flowers and vote for the next US President (joke).

Apparently BirthdayAlarm's technology was the foundation for Bebo - and BirthdayAlarm at its height had over 100 million users and revenues in the handful of $ millions. BirthdayAlarm was a semi-abandoned venture baby when Bebo took off but now has Birch magic finger attention again.

Let's see...

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Yahoo's Yang Dumped

Yahoo's Jerry Yang has chucked the towl in and resigned/er, been dumped as CEO of his cheer-leading, tree-hugging portal on steroids (once) - proving that even celeb founders can get promoted beyond their jock straps. He's handed the search for a new CEO to jobopz, I mean, Heidricks and is off on an ice skating trip. Nice if you can.

Eric Schmidt apologized profusely and simultaneously sniggered, while the Valley is hot with rumors over who will be the next poor dumb-founded Yahoo chief jock. Palin? The bankers desperately seeking an Xmas bonus are circling with a Facebook mandate in hand. After all the Facebook team fresh from trying to raise money in Dubai have just figured that a reverse into the Yahoo public not-quite shell may be less depressing.

What's the Future of Blogging?

Blogging's come a long way thanks to enthusiastic and dangerously prolific amateurs and citizen net-head junkie journalists. But what's the future of the worlds top 500 blogsites? Here goes:
- They'll become increasingly professional, staffed by journalists fallen out of shrinking traditional media outfits.
- Blogging platforms such as Typepad and Blogger will become ever more powerful replicating all but the best online news and media platforms - and,
- Voice blogs will grow as companies like Textic voice enable an increasing number of blogsites.

So for those out of work hacks - get blogging. Or check out new age job sites such as jobopz. I know what I'd do.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Spotify Challenges iTunes

The Swedes are at it again. This time they're taking on iTunes with a free, ad based streaming music service called Spotify that also has a premium, a la Real Networks, subscription service. It looks a bit like iTunes - with Web 2.0 bells on. 

Spotify have raised a bunch of money (which is no mean feat in this market), bought a ton of music rights and gone live in closed beta (i.e. give 'em your email address and they'll get back to you one day with a free login/code... Zzzzz...).

Their premium service looks a bit pricey, they need to let us know how big their archive is and they need to get beyond closed beta. Other than that it looks cool - check it out!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Jobs Go Social at

According to a brand new jobs site - - traditional job seeking sites are too static and controlling. Monster and Hotjobs have basically taken the agency model and applied it online. Time for something different.

So jobopz, a Web 2.0 startup, has decided that jobs should go 'social'. i.e. we should democratize the process by which we find jobs, employers, agencies etc. And communities should be built around careers, cool employers and even cool employees. Each helping the other in the age old cause of finding employ. is in beta and has decided to treat careers as a cause we can get behind together and help each other develop whether we are actively or passively seeking. Looks timely - check it.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

iPhone No1 Selling US Handset

The iPhone has just defied gravity - again. In October the iPhone overtook the Razr as the US' No1 selling mobile handset. And in one fell swoop the smartphone has stormed the fashion device. Proving that form and function is the new cellphone reality.

Does this mean that the smartphone category could grow to become half the size of the cellphone market in the Western world? Yep, could be. That rising tide will benefit Apple, Blackberry and Microsoft. And Google's hot on their heels. Nokia could prove a loser.

Apple, yet again, have demonstrated a canny knack for catalyzing consumer tech sectors. Time to hit the TV guys. Oh, and GM could do with just a little help. The iCar?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Travel Writers Launch Wandermelon

A group of four travel writers (some also photographers and film dudes) have just launched a brand new travel site called Wandermelon. Why not? It's a mouth watering trip down Internet lane allowing those of us too depressed about the world's collapse to join them (virtually) in ranches, canyons, beaches or any other planetary hideout. Ya.

The site looks like Tyepad on steroids (?) and could perhaps do with some more content and more visual entertainment and interactivity. But one definitely worth watching even if just to make us all realize that we're in the wrong job. We'll keep you posted on this one - site visit? Please.

Monday, November 10, 2008

How Obama should use Social Technology as President

Arianna Huffington at the Web 2.0 Summit talked about how effective Obama was in using social media and social networking (aka Web 2.0) to win the Presidential race.

But how should he use the Internet and social tools once in office? His approach should add to the press conference - which is fine for formal, state of the nation announcements and foreign dignitary visits (Zzzz...) - but for a more personal, regular dialogue they should use the Internet. 'On dude.

Twitter and Facebook for weekly updates on government achievements. The Web in general to garner and shape the nations input and feedback on specific policies. And the new tech tzar, kong duder should not only ensure that the US continues its technology leadership position worldwide, but that the administration uses the latest tools and technologies to dramatically alter and improve the way in which the President and his cabinet/teams dialogue and interact with their people.

Shove that in your pipe and smoke it Arianna.

Friday, November 07, 2008 - Social Networking for Artists launched last year with the improbable dream of becoming the social network and Web platform for artists around the world. A Facebook for creatives.

Well, it seems to be working. They're growing at a pace - collecting a handful of new artists every day. And some of them are good! Founded by artists, b-uncut allows their members to load artworks, rate each other through a simple yet nifty peer review system, build personal home pages, promote their upcoming shows, video's, playlists and more.

The coolest artists even get featured.

This is one to watch. So for you closet artists - sign on and get creative.

Will Facebook Connect Connect

Facebook are about to launch Facebook Connect. This is the beginning of their hub and spoke strategy so that Facebook users can connect their Facebook pages and content/apps to other sites. This is a smack in the chops to Google's approach but one that Facebook feels powerful enough to pull off.

It should work and make Facebook an increasingly important part of our lives. Just - how in dosh name do they plan to make money out of it? No answers form Facebook. Little surprise there - but apparently all's OK 'cos the Facebook CFO is off raising cash in Dubai - or is it Bahrain? Then they can finally kill all the rumors and buy Twitter who by the way have figured out how to make money - corporate twitters. 'Pub time'.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Yahoo Get Dumped Again!

The same geniuses @ Yahoo that jilted Microsoft a few sweet (not) months ago have just been dumped by Google. Der frigtards springs to mind. Microsoft they lost over price - $33 a share - which proved to poor for Yang and his mob. Given the markets today that now looks like a, duh, wild deal thrown away.

And now Google have been buzzed by the anti-trust cops which leaves Yahoo with a few less flattering options:
a. tail-between-leggit back to Microsoft,
b. merge with AOL (Aaah!),
c. frig an all share deal with Facebook - yeah right.

So I guess our money's on plan d - new management! Dudes.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Linkedin App Store Scores

The Linkedin app store is live n' kickin. It actually works quite well - even though I'm not sure they've thought hard enough about the design and usability of our page once we've loaded an app. Some of them can be annoyingly intrusive.

Features apps include Amamzon's Reading List, Huddle Workspaces, Slideshare, Blog Link and Company Buzz. Most work well and should do the job for the typical profile of a Linkedin user (Zzzzzz....). I can see the myriad of consultants on the site with a desire to soup up their Linkedin pages getting into this - but not busy execs.

Venture guys with time to sit on their hands (given the market) and fear of getting caught on the golf course might as well app doodle - at least it'll look like their working.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Textic Talks

We recently came across an innovative software company called Textic based out of little 'ol London - well, actually, Maidenhead.... which for our readers around the world is just left of Heathrow. Anyway, Textic do 'text-to-speech' (yep, talking Websites) in a catchy software-as-a-service wrapper squirted onto a Web server which instantly speech enables any Website - i.e. it yaps its content to you in real time!

They claim that 20% of the population have some kind of problem reading text on computer screens - whether it be sight issues, dyslexia or more and by Textic enabling your site you can support them. Quite a responsible statement. Could it be the Web's equivalent of wheelchair ramps?

Either way Textic are apparently running at a clip, looking at the US and thinking of going mobile. Now that's the future. We'll keep you posted.