Archive for the ‘technology’ Category

Live Jaiku/Twittering from Net Visionary Awards tonight

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

Best of luck to everyone. I just paid 120 quid on RENTing a tux for the night. Crazy price. All just to keep y’all updated. Very best of luck to the bloggers nominated: Grandad, Denise Cox and Krishna De.

Also best of luck to Eamon McGrane and Ciara O’Brien for the Journalist Award.

Science Week Competition Day 3 – What’s the next gadget that you want to buy?

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

Next question, next chance to win a Wii. Get blogging on what’s the next gadget that you want to buy? And g’wan, go into florid detail as to why. Funny pictures too. Maybe even make a video and do a song. Earn that Wii!

Simon says a keyfob.

Suzy says a Jawbone.

Cian wants a wallet/keys/phone combo device.

David wants a bookmark.

Gerry wants Shades.

Seán wants an OpenMoko phone.

Liam wants a Three Skypephone.

Treasa wants an ipod Shuffle.

Sinéad wants a creative Zen.

Simon McGarr says he wants an Internet Radio.

Kevin still hasn’t found what he’s looking for.

Tensare wants a Chinook.

Johnny K wants an Energy Monitor.

Joe wants a GPS device.

Pedro wants Lego Mindstorm.

Bernie says a Free Ride Pen.

Conor says a hybrid Nokia.

Joe says a home cinema system.

Adam says the Zoom H4.

Don’t buy a cow, buy an OLPC

Thursday, November 15th, 2007

Because it’s more selfish and god knows people in Africa need a laptop over a cow. I wonder are African charties and other groups going to suffer because of geeks getting into charity? I’d be supporting Bóthar, had I a social conscience.

Some Facebook ads that have started showing up

Wednesday, November 14th, 2007

Rob mentioned recently the dodgy ads he was getting in Facebook. So with their new highly targeted ad system, here’s the type of ads I’m getting on Facebook.

Facebook Ads
This seems just to be targeted to Ireland

facebook ad
Same with this, nowhere did I say I was into guys. Targeted to all males in Ireland?

Facebook ad
Seems like this is targeted just to Cork? Though they have a Dublin office too.

Facebook ad
Targeted to all of Ireland?

Science Week Ireland blogging competition Day 1 entries

Tuesday, November 13th, 2007

Simon on a torch.

Conor on the ZX Spectrum.

David on books.

Catherine on calculators.

Joe on Lego.

Kevin on K’Nex.

Other Joe on Mario Kart.

Paul on the Acorn.

Ken on the tape.

Seán on the Internet.

Will on speed dial and transformers!

Cian on the Playstation.

Red Mum on the rubicks cube.

Simon McGarr – The Calculator.

Darran on VHS.

Bernie on the phone.

Sinéad on Hotmail.

Suzy on Simon.

Treasa remembers the Etch-a-sketch.

You have til midnight to talk about your fav invention. The odds are fantastic to win a Wii! Get blogging. Also keep in mind the topics for the next few days.

Science Week Ireland blogging competition – Win a Nintendo Wii each day this week

Tuesday, November 13th, 2007

In case you didn’t know it, Science Week is on this week and they’ve gone all blogger friendly by having a competition each day for the rest of the week.

Here’s their spiel:

This year Science Week Ireland explores this theme and illustrates just how much science surrounds us every day. We are constantly surrounded by science, technology and engineering in the modern world. We are woken by talking alarm clocks, dress in man-made fibres, check the TV weather, listen to radio news or traffic reports, use electricity to make our breakfast. And all that is before we have even left the house.

We would like you to tell us a little bit about the role science plays in your everyday lives. We are inviting you to answer each of the following questions:

  • Tuesday – Q What was the favourite invention from your childhood?
  • Wednesday – Q What invention do you want to see most in the future?
  • Thursday – Q What’s the next gadget that you want to buy?
  • Friday – Q Which invention has helped you most with your working life?
  • Saturday – Q In your opinion what was the best invention in 2007?

Easy pickings really! C’mon and get blogging. Link to the Science Week website so they can track entries or link back here. I’m not sure will Science Week allow this, but if people read this blog, don’t have their own blog but want to contribute, I’ll happily allow them to guest post here. I’ll check with the Science Week folks about this.

Also see this other competition from them.

MashupCamp – Do we deserve it to come back?

Monday, November 12th, 2007

MashupCamp Ireland. David Berlind, Doug Gold and everyone else (apologies I don’t know your names yet folks) have put a wonderful International event together and they honoured Ireland by bringing it here. The turnout has been healthy enough and hopefully we’ll see more people on Monday. Maybe even more Irish people because from what I’ve seen there’s been more International people than locals here.

MashupCamp is a very important event with some high-powered people from the biggest companies in the world showing how to make new services and products using their APIs. Mashup Camp could have chosen anywhere in Europe and they chose Dublin. It’s nice to see people from these tech companies fly in to share a lot of information with everyone that turns up.

I would have expected to see more of the people that go to the various Open Coffees to turn up, or more of the Paddy’s Valley people, especially as they’re getting pitching training tomorrow. I.B.M. had a great presence and Microsoft have been there at every single talk over the weekend, mixing and networking and even writing summaries of some of the talks. No official Google presence to show people how to use their APIs yet they have some of the most used APIs about. Good to see an unofficial presence though.

I also would have expected the likes of Enterprise Ireland to have had a large presence or any presence at the event. They’re a sponsor too. Out of interest how many Enterprise Ireland D.A.s rang tech companies on their books and told them about MashupCamp? S.F.A. I reckon. I gave the organisers a small bit of help getting the word out yet the locals here in Ireland should have been clawing to get to Mashup Camp without having to be begged and prodded. Universities should have been aware of the event and telling their students get here and should have gone themselves. E.I. and their grant drawing clients should have been there in force. Any tech startup should have been at the event to mix with the “big boys” and just see how they work and learn about the way they work.

For me, I see MashupCamp as being like a multi-national company wanting to come here and set up. The same way politicians, councils, chambers’ of commerce and I.D.A./E.I. fall over themselves to court these big companies, so should they do the same for events like Mashup Camp. If E.I. and Unis and all the others cannot see a few steps ahead and that Mashup Camp creates the potential for new jobs and enterprises then we really are sunk. We’ve been given a fantastic opportunity with MashupCamp and I don’t think we’ve honoured it enough by the lack of support from the tech community in Ireland. We need way more events like this in Ireland from people more experienced than us but if they come looking at having events here, what can we show to them for us to deserve it? Remember, they can go to India or China where they’ll be treated like gods. Or London or Berlin where they’ll pack many halls and probably make a profit.

Despite all of this I hope to see enough good feedback from the event that the organisers will come back again and maybe next time we can see a queue of Irish people wanting to get in. Well done MashupCamp organisers! Thanks for the event so far. It’s great.

Analysis: New Facebook Ad System – faux-permission marketing to your friends? (Twitter finds a revenue stream)

Wednesday, November 7th, 2007

But before I give my opinion on this: Microsoft have no input into this at all. Holy Cow. This is a competing ad platform to the existing one running on Facebook that Microsoft manages. While the 240 Million dollars is small change for Microsoft, bloody hell, all they got was access to banner advertising while Facebook has control of a more highly targeted system?

Thanks to the analysis of Jeremiah Owyang on his blog I was able to make some kind of sense of what this ad system actually does.

Executive summary

To me this system appears to be the start of Vendor Relationship Marketing though in a kludgy manner. The new Facebook system allows a company or individual to basically create a profile or group for their brand or product. Instead of “friending” this brand, a person “Fans” this profile and it is listed under their friends listing. The profile owner though can serve ads on your profile. They can also show ads on your news feed when you interact with them on their profile. Also external sites can advertise in your feed when you interact with them e.g. Your feed will say you bought a book from Amazon and under it Amazon might offer you 5% off the same book OR a book that is more tailored to your preferences as with the ad system it caters to your profile. The last bit has the most potential.

The new Facebook Ad Platform is broken into four areas: Social Ads, Facebook Pages, Facebook Beacon and Facebook Insights

Facebook Social Ads:

Very much just an iteration on Facebook Flyers but they allow you to drill down and be even more specific who you can target, age, sex, workplace, college, likes and dislikes etc. Quite targeted but these via Facebook Pages and outside webpages allow you to place ads in the News Feeds of people. They do this by showing ads under the actions of what friends have done with facebook Pages or Facebook Partner websites.

facebook ads 3

This is pretty much your friend giving permission for you to put an ad on their friend’s News Feed. Not permission marketing as such is it? How many friends will you dump on Facebook when this kicks in wholesale?

Facebook pages:

These are profiles for companies or products. People “friend” or rather “fan” your Facebook Page. It works very much like a profile with a few exceptions. When you add a Facebook Page it goes into the Fan section on your own profile.

This is the screenshot of adding Jeremiah’s Facebook page:
facebook ads 1

And this is how it looks on my Facebook profile:
facebook ads 2

All your friends also see this add in their news feed. This is now called a “social story”. When you interact with the Facebook Page by leaving comments and uploading photos and all that, that too goes into your news feed. Just like interacting with a friend. Each of the “social stories” has a link back to the Facebook Page so it is a handy way of increasing traffic to a profile. Then the Social Ads kick in. So you see this on the News Feed and under it is an ad for whatever that brand is BUT it is also tailored, almost sniper-like to your Facebook profile. So people in Ireland might see a different ad to someone in the UK or men see different ones to women.

Facebook Beacon

This is clever. I like this. This is for external websites who want to get a foot in the door of Facebook. Like the example above. Buy a book from Amazon and it gets listed in the news feed of that Facebook member and you can attach an ad to it. Want 5% off the book John just bought? This is good in that to start with it won’t get astroturfed. It will allow us nosey human beings to see what people bought or what they did with external websites while that site can pique your interest with an offer. And that offer is tailored to your demographic.

Facebook Insights

This is just the stats part of the ad system. Seems basic enough for now but bound to change.

Things unanswered for now

Groups: Why isn’t this offered to existing groups? C’mon Facebook people, with millions in some groups you could actually make more cash by allowing those group owners to do the same. Switch it on for them. Allow group members to opt in.

An ad network inside an ad network
If you build up your brand (Hey, remember Ze Frank is a brand) on Facebook and put a lot of hard work building it up, why not be able to make money by selling ads for other people and do it in some kind of automated fashion. If I have 100k followers, it would make me and Facebook money if I can allow some other people to send targeted ads to my subscribers without this advertiser going off and creating their own page and build up a following. Right now it only seems that I can spend money on Social Ads, not make money. Facebook people, yu do remember something called AdSense, right? Allow people to make money from their Facebook pages. Go on!

Where’s my kickback?
If my friends are reading my lifestream and seeing ads built around what I’ve purchased and done. What do I get back? I want a kickback

Will others rip this idea off?
You friggin bet. Now I sound American! Tumblr just got their revenue stream if they hadn’t already thought of this. Twitter too. I think we’ll also see RSS feeds of purchases become standard on all websites and people encouraged to stick them in their lifestreams via some kind of points thing. Get 5 points every time someone clicks on an item you’ve purchased etc. etc.

The future

This will get people and advertisers next to the next step in advertising. Vendor Relationship Management. A post on that another time.

Gadget Lust – ASUS Eee PC 701

Tuesday, November 6th, 2007


Asus EEPCShips in 6 days. I want. Once I get it running with a 3G USB modem that is.

• Display : 7″
• CPU & Chipset : Intel Mobile CPU & chipset
• Operating System : Linux System/ Hardware Compatible with Windows XP
• Communication : 10/100 Mbps Ethernet
• WLAN : WiFi 802.11b/g
• Memory : 512MB, DDR2
• Storage : 4GB S.S.D. (Solid-State Disk)
• Web-Cam : 0.3 Mega Pixel Video camera
• Audio : Hi-Definition audio CODEC, Built-in stereo speaker, Built-in microphone
• Keyboard : Qwerty UK keyboard
• Expansion: 3 x USB ports
• Battery Life : 3 hrs (4 cells)
• Dimension & Weight : 22.5 x 16.4 x 2.15~3.5 cm, less than 1kg

Bebo releases Bebo Nation – Million Dollar homepage esque idea

Monday, November 5th, 2007

Congrats to Adam for his work on Bebo Nation. The Max Bebo can make from selling the 10×10 pixel slots is €25k so I assume there’ll be more island a la Second Life.