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Location Based Apps Taking Off and I’m Finally Getting On Board March 16, 2010

Posted by Nick in social media.
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With SXSW taking place right now, the location wars are in full swing and Foursquare and Gowalla are going at it. With the wars heating up I thought I’d give it a shot also and I’ve started checking in on Foursquare, Gowalla and also occasionally on Yelp! in order to check out these systems. So far, Foursquare and Gowalla are very similar and it seems like they are both getting heavy usage down in Austin this week. The one feature I like about Gowalla right now is that it uses GPS data to guarantee a person’s location and not allow false check-ins. This keeps someone from checking in at places they have never been and getting a bunch of undeserved mayorships. I’m not really sure the intrinsic value of checking-in yet, that’s still something I’m trying to figure out. However, I have noticed that I’ve been finding some good deals from bars, restaurants, etc. for people who have checked in. I’m also waiting for these companies to start making more money, they have certainly started with major partnerships starting to line up-I’m just curious to see if these are lasting and continue to expand. Not to mention will these services continue to be successful if Facebook and Twitter roll-out similar location based services…why add another app if you can just do the same thing on Facebook. If location services are implemented similarly on Facebook or Twitter, either of these platforms may be able to seriously damage the traction of Foursquare and Gowalla…I guess we will see.


Professors on the Hotseat November 5, 2009

Posted by Nick in education, social media.
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Hotseat is an awesome “new” way to integrate social media into the classroom and boost class participation and engagement at the same time.

Hotseat is a new app in development that uses Twitter, Facebook, text message, and a web interface to allow students to comment or ask questions on what is happening in class in real time. Two classes with a total of 600 students are currently testing the application at Purdue University about 75% have used Hotseat to ask questions, critique the professor, or vote on topics to be covered.

The real question is: Is it useful? One professor testing it says it does exactly what it is designed to, increases participation. Really, with the popularity of social media on the university campus, I think it is certainly a useful tool and an interesting way to engage students.

Check out the article at Mashable as well.

Ochocinco launching news network October 25, 2009

Posted by Nick in social media, technology.
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Chad Ochocinco is a twitter fanatic, it has actually gotten him in trouble with the Bengals and the NFL a few times, and he has even launched his own iPhone app. He has also been talking about flying twitter users out to games to watch him play. But now, he has gone one step further and saying that through a partnership with Motorola he will be launching a twitter news network called the Ochocinco News Network, with the slogan, “If I break it, you might as well believe it.”

Though there isn’t really much in the way of news yet, the supposed plan is that Ochocinco will provide other players with Motorola phones and have them break news before major networks find out and get the chance.

It is likely that this move by 8-5 will just piss off the NFL even more, but it will entertain and delight us (especially if it works).

CIA getting in on the social media game October 20, 2009

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spy computer

According to Wired, In-Q-Tel, the technology division of the CIA, recently invested an undisclosed amount of money in Visible Technologies. Visible Technologies is a firm that does social media monitoring for major companies including Microsoft, Dell, and Verizon.

Wired tells us that this is part of a movement to better incorporate publicly available information that is often hidden into their intelligence gathering. With the CIA coming into the game it should be clear that the power of social media isn’t going away any time soon. So careful what you tweet because now the CIA is reading it all.