Web Services Upend Old Ideas About the Little Guy’s Role

This is one of the first times I’ve used the article headline as my own blog headline, but this piece is really on the money. And I can feel the growth right in my own pocketbook. 😉 Actually, the full title is A Cyberfueled Growth Spurt Web Services Upend Old Ideas About the Little Guy’s Role. By acknowledging the growth of viable web development and “software as service” and its increasing role and viability — not only with enterprise, but for smaller organizations — this worthy NY Times Business perspective explains how the IT business is being turned upside down in favor of the “little guy.” Encouraging news and a view worth reading.

Your Portable Hot Spot: Wi-Fi hot spot in-a-box

Now you can create your own wi-fi hot spot on the road, on the run and on the fly. The NYTimes’ David Pogue explains and reviews the top three models of a device that’s still in search of its own name. The device is referred to as a “portable hot spot” or as a “cellular gateway” or as a “mobile router.” Some people are even using them instead of their DSL or cable modem so that they can take their connectivity with them and share it with others almost anywhere.

Good Laughs: Daily Show Meets MySpace Social Networking

IMHO, TV doesn’t get much better than John Stewart’s Daily Show on Comedy Central. I am frequently grateful for it as an antidote to the daily news. Now, Stewart’s “trendspotting” feature takes on “social networking” such as MySpace. It cracked me up. Nice that Google Video (and someone who uses it) has made it available online. Watch this Daily Show segment now.

Search Engine Market Share Stats

I get asked on a regular basis “How much of the search engine traffic comes from Google as compared to the others?” Well, the first point is that the traffic to a particular site varies depending on its audience and its keyword positions at various search engines. For example, my ComBridges.com site gets a higher percentage of its traffic than what’s shown here from Google, while my MediaMall.com site gets less. That said, here’s a chart from a eMarketer article comparing 2004 to 2005 searches from the “big three.” And, if you don’t pay close attention to the changes in this market, you can see that the 80-20 rule applies here with about 81% of the searches being done on what are now the three main search engines (Google, Yahoo! & MSN). The other 19% is spread across a large number of much smaller sites.

Breakthrough Productivity Apps: Basecamp & Backpack

Basecamp project management and collaborationIf you haven’t checked out these very impressive online applications (ASP’s), I couldn’t recommend them too highly. As a company, we’ve been experimenting with all kinds of virtual collaboration tools, project management applications, and such. To date, Basecamp is getting the job done like none other. The fact that it’s caused us to sort our projects into categories (we can see them more clearly this way… duh!) and the way that “milestones” are distributed in the calendar is extremely useful. The interface is clean and easy. We’re just getting into the messages component which I think is going to add a whole new level of virtual teamwork.

Backpack: Get Organized and Collaborate And then I started looking for a new way to sort out some of my more personal to-do’s and realized I might want to check out Basecamp’s “little brother,” Backpack. Way easy. Way flexible. I love the easy way that you can make a page public to anyone, or make it a one page collaboration environment with specific people. And again, the interface design is excellent.

I’ve even been getting value from the developing company, 37signals‘ blog: Signals vs Noise. They’ve got more kewl products to check out like “Ta-Da List” and more on the way. These folks and their apps are seriously worthy of your time and exploration. Some of the best stuff I’ve seen on the web in a long time. Thank you, 37signals! I’m a happy new customer of yours. And no wonder some geek called them “the best little web company of 2005.”

PS. Another thing that’s really impressive is the size of the community they’ve ignited, as illustrated by the number of comments to their blog posts… quite different from most blogs including this one 😉

The truth about Flash in Email

We do lots of Flash and lots of email newsletters, and I’ve always known that delivering Flash via email is problematic, although I’ve heard frequent claims from vendors who claim to have overcome the email client software compatibility issues. It appears I’m right (which I always like) and this article offers a quite comprehensive test. Verdict: don’t do it.