thinking

The Reason Larry Page Doesn’t Want Googlers Thinking About The Competition Is Pretty Inspiring (GOOG)

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/the-reason-larry-page-doesnt-want-googlers-thinking-about-the-competition-is-pretty-inspiring-2012-12

larry page

During an interview with Fortune’s Miguel Helft, Google CEO Larry Page is transparently reluctant to talk about who he thinks is Google’s competition.

Helft asks him: “Is it Siri? Is it Amazon or commercial queries?”

Page tries to dodge the question, saying: “I don’t really think about it that way.”

Helf presses: “Because you don’t think about competition?”

And then Page drops this doozy, which is pretty inspirational for people in the tech industry:

“Obviously we think about competition to some extent.”

“But I feel my job is mostly getting people not to think about our competition. In general I think there’s a tendency for people to think about the things that exist. Our job is to think of the thing you haven’t thought of yet that you really need. And by definition, if our competitors knew that thing, they wouldn’t tell it to us or anybody else. I think just our strengths, our weaknesses, our opportunities are different than any other company.”

(Of course the truth is that lots of Googlers do think about the competition, and when they do, it’s mostly about Amazon lately. The reason: Google makes its money from commercial web searches, and increasingly people are just going straight to Amazon.com for that.)

SEE ALSO: 12 Quotes That Reveal How Larry Page Built Google Into The World’s Most Important Internet Company

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Tuesday, December 11th, 2012 news No Comments

Amazon launches Glacier archiving service, a cheap way to put your files on ice

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/08/21/amazon-launches-glacier-archiving-service/

Amazon launches 'Glacier' archiving service, a cheap way to put your files on ice

Amazon’s S3 cloud service has proved a popular proposition, with many large web enterprises happily depending on it (most of the time) to serve up its content. Now, the internet retail giant is offering a similar product, aimed squarely at archives, called Glacier. The idea seems pretty simple, starting from a penny, you can store 1GB of data on the firm’s servers for one month. You’ll only pay for what you store, and there are no upfront costs. Thinking this sounds like a cheap way to host your website? Well, maybe not, as retrieval requests are sent to a queue, and won’t be available to download for a few hours. There’s no limit on the amount of data you can store though, which is not surprising, but each individual archive does have a 40TB limit — so those DNA back-ups are off the menu. Retrieval is priced differently, with 5 percent of your storage (pro rata) downloadable for free, but beyond that you’ll have to pay. The service is available from today, with storage locations in the US, Europe and Japan. Full details of pricing can be found via the source.

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Amazon launches Glacier archiving service, a cheap way to put your files on ice originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 21 Aug 2012 22:37:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use! of feed s.

Permalink Techmeme  |  sourceAmazon Web Services Blog  | Email this | Comments

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Tuesday, August 21st, 2012 news No Comments

The Scariest Thing For Anyone Thinking About Buying The Facebook IPO

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/facebook-revenue-growth-ahead-of-ipo-2012-4

Here’s the scariest thing to come out of Facebook’s updated financials yesterday: The company’s growth is rapidly decelerating.

Last quarter it was only up 45%. The quarter before that it was 55%, and the quarter before that it was 104%. 45% is good for most companies, but for a company that’s supposed to be a hot IPO it’s underwhelming, as is the growth trend.

chart of the day, facebook revenue growth ahead of ipo, april 2012

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Tuesday, April 24th, 2012 news No Comments

We Love Facebook Because It Tricks Us Into Thinking We’re Doing Something Important [Science]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5883160/study-we-love-facebook-because-it-tricks-us-into-thinking-were-doing-something-important

Study: We Love Facebook Because It Tricks Us Into Thinking We're Doing Something ImportantWhen you’re perusing your Facebook account, your brain might be fooling you into thinking you’re doing something incredibly creative and productive that will improve your life. If only that were true!

Scientists in Milan and at M.I.T. examined the various physiological states of 30 people using Facebook compared to when they were relaxing looking at natural panoramas or taking a math test. They measured physical and psychological responses including breathing rate, brain activation, and pupil dilation, and found that only while looking at Facebook (not while looking at nature pics or doing math), the study subjects were transported into a “core flow state,” which is that thing that people often call, simply, flow. It’s what you might experience when you’re practicing an instrument, or if you’re writing and feeling like everything is just, well, flowing. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi describes it wonderfully in this TED talk.

We already know Facebook is harder to resist than cigarettes and alcohol. So it’s not all that surprising that Facebook is enjoyable. Cocaine is enjoyable! But like an addictive drug, the results suggest the social network might have a sinister effect: Facebook makes you think you’re being productive when really you’re probably just telling everyone how delicious your lunch was and discovering that your best friend’s cousin’s baby just ate squash.

That’s why perhaps it’s important to keep in mind what Harvard’s Daniel Gulati said: over time, Facebook is making us miserable. Everyone is a shiny happy person on Facebook. Very few people share their insecurities, misgivings, evenings spent alone in the fetal position. And if you experience any of that you might feel very much alone if your visiting Facebook often. In which case maybe consider playing your favorite instrument, hanging out with your kids, working on that novel, or doing something else that leads to actual flow. [Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking]

Image: Shutterstock/PressureUA

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Tuesday, February 7th, 2012 Uncategorized No Comments

I Read 21 Books About The Financial Crisis And They Explained Nothing

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/andrew-lo-21-books-financial-crisis-2012-2


andrew lo

Ever thought you would have to read 21 books to get to the bottom of what caused the financial crisis?

Andrew Lo, an economist at MIT, has some bad news: it’s going to take at least 22.

Lo, a leading expert on hedge funds and financial engineering, has written a paper (h/t NPR) for the Journal of Economic Literature describing his experience reading 21 books on the crisis — nine by journalists, 11 by academics and one by a former Treasury Secretary.

His conclusion: In a field that prides itself on its scientific rigor (however dismal), the books reveal that alarmingly few facts about the crisis have been agreed upon. Was there too little or too much regulation? How much of a factor were low interest rates? No one’s been able to say conclusively.

“After each book, I felt like I knew less,” Lo told NPR’s Planet Money.

Economics, he says, has fallen well short of that standard when it comes to understanding the crisis:

“Many of us like to think of financial economics as a science, but complex events like the financial crisis suggest that this conceit may be more wishful thinking than reality.”

Read Andrew Lo’s Reading About the Financial Crisis: A 21-Book Review >

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Monday, February 6th, 2012 news No Comments

Comcast’s extra ads ruin NFC championship game conclusion in some areas

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/01/23/comcast-xfinity-ads-interrupt-nfc-championship/

It wasn’t just RIM that had designs on the limelight during the football action last night. Comcast commercials appeared over the NFC Championship game last night, thoughtfully playing over the climax of the match ‘twixt the Giants and the 49ers. Frustrated fans who missed out on parts of the fourth quarter and overtime promptly began voicing dissent on the company’s support forums. The Washington Post has a quote from spokesperson Amiee Metrick indicating the problems were due to a possible “equipment failure” at a local Fox affiliate, WTTG, resulting in the ill-timed ads reported in Washington D.C. We’ve heard that of customers receiving a $10 credit and an apology, but it seems unlikely to soothe the brow of those — like the person who recorded video of the incident you can see after the break — thinking of switching to FiOS.

Update: We’ve received a response from Comcast (included after the break), and updated the post to clarify the apparent breakdown was at local Fox affiliate WTTG.

[Thanks, John]

Continue reading Comcast’s extra ads ruin NFC championship game conclusion in some areas

Comcast’s extra ads ruin NFC championship game conclusion in some areas originally appeared on Engadget on Mon, 23 Jan 2012 15:22:00 EDT. P! lease se e our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink   |  sourceComcast forums, Washington Post  | Email this | Comments


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Tuesday, January 24th, 2012 news No Comments

Tumblr Blows Past 15 Billion Pageviews Per Month, Thumbing Nose At Old Media Thinking As It Goes

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/tumblr-blows-past-15-billion-pageviews-per-month-2012-1


david%20karp%20wallstrip

The latest social-media phenomenon, Tumblr, continues to post astounding traffic metrics.

Founder and CEO David Karp spoke at the DLD conference in Munich this morning, where he reiterated some of the company’s recent milestones:

  • 100+ million uniques per month
  • 15+ billion pageviews per month

Tumblr, which is basically halfway between a blogging platform and Twitter, allows users to post photos, videos, and text. Critically, it also allows users to “follow” each other and “re-blog” the posts of others.

The latter concepts, which Twitter has also capitalized on with amazing success (through “following” and “re-tweets”), inserts reblogged posts into each user’s timeline stream. Thus, anyone who “follows” a user, also sees the re-blogged posts.

This turns Tumblr users into editors and curators in addition to content creators. The sharing functionality allows posts to spread rapidly, just as links and headlines do on Facebook and Twitter. In Tumblr’s case, though, the whole post is shared, not just the headline and link.

It’s worth noting that this whole concept makes a mockery of the idea of traditional content “theft.” If someone “re-blogged” a traditional newspaper story, inserting it into their own site, the newspaper would probably scream bloody murder and sic lawyers on them. And yet, on Tumblr, those whose posts are “re-blogged” feel nothing but gratitude and pride (thanks for sharing my work!).

Some other stats from David Karp’s talk this morning (as tweeted by idealab founder Bill Gross and digital journalism guru Jeff Jarvis):

  • The average post is “re-blogged” 9 times
  • 90% of the posts on Tumblr are reblogs or groups (curation). 10% are original content creation.

In another DLD panel, Glam Media CEO Samir Arora remarked that the “old version of media was that you needed editors that work for you. In new era they don’t.”

Nowhere is that more clear than at Tumblr.

SEE ALSO: Check Out Tumblr’s Amazing New York Headquarters, Where All Those Pageviews Are Made

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Monday, January 23rd, 2012 news No Comments

Tumblr Blows Past 15 Billion Pageviews Per Month, Thumbing Nose At Old Media Thinking As It Goes

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/tumblr-blows-past-15-billion-pageviews-per-month-2012-1


david%20karp%20wallstrip

The latest social-media phenomenon, Tumblr, continues to post astounding traffic metrics.

Founder and CEO David Karp spoke at the DLD conference in Munich this morning, where he reiterated some of the company’s recent milestones:

  • 100+ million uniques per month
  • 15+ billion pageviews per month

Tumblr, which is basically halfway between a blogging platform and Twitter, allows users to post photos, videos, and text. Critically, it also allows users to “follow” each other and “re-blog” the posts of others.

The latter concepts, which Twitter has also capitalized on with amazing success (through “following” and “re-tweets”), inserts reblogged posts into each user’s timeline stream. Thus, anyone who “follows” a user, also sees the re-blogged posts.

This turns Tumblr users into editors and curators in addition to content creators. The sharing functionality allows posts to spread rapidly, just as links and headlines do on Facebook and Twitter. In Tumblr’s case, though, the whole post is shared, not just the headline and link.

It’s worth noting that this whole concept makes a mockery of the idea of traditional content “theft.” If someone “re-blogged” a traditional newspaper story, inserting it into their own site, the newspaper would probably scream bloody murder and sic lawyers on them. And yet, on Tumblr, those whose posts are “re-blogged” feel nothing but gratitude and pride (thanks for sharing my work!).

Some other stats from David Karp’s talk this morning (as tweeted by idealab founder Bill Gross and digital journalism guru Jeff Jarvis):

  • The average post is “re-blogged” 9 times
  • 90% of the posts on Tumblr are reblogs or groups (curation). 10% are original content creation.

In another DLD panel, Glam Media CEO Samir Arora remarked that the “old version of media was that you needed editors that work for you. In new era they don’t.”

Nowhere is that more clear than at Tumblr.

SEE ALSO: Check Out Tumblr’s Amazing New York Headquarters, Where All Those Pageviews Are Made

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Monday, January 23rd, 2012 news No Comments

Why Google Is The Grinch Who Stole Your Business

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/the-grinch-who-stole-your-business-2011-12


Google Sign

It’s that time of year when we all reflect on the past, search our souls and determine what we want for the next year. I’ve been reflecting on what it means to work with a company that controls so much of the market, provides such a broad set of capabilities and delivers such a large percentage of monthly revenues to publishers. Of course, I’m thinking of Google and what their dominance in the ad market means for a publisher’s future and its ability to remain relevant to marketers.

What do we know about Google? They are this great company that gives consumers some of the best digital products available on the Web: search, email, maps, Android, apps and more. This has catapulted Google to the rank of second most valuable brand, behind only Apple, according to Millward Brown. This seems to be great for consumers, but what about the businesses who are now reliant on Google for search and display revenue, advertising technology and various business applications like Google docs, Android OS, Chrome, etc.?

Many of the businesses I meet with hold Google in high regard because of the products they represent and the amount of revenue they provide. However, these businesses are equally concerned about Google’s consumer stranglehold, their influence over the ad ecosystem and their focus on automation, all of which lessens the publishers’ worth in the value chain as a whole. Google’s market dominance stretches well beyond search, which in itself is obviously enormous. This expansive dominance should be alarming for every marketing-related business, including publishers, advertisers and agency and marketing services technologies.  Here are a few stats on Google by category that will likely frighten even the largest of these businesses:

  • 65.38% Share of Search, Oct-11 Hitwise
  • 44.1% Share of Ad revenue, Oct-11 PCMag
  • 43.8% Share for Video, Oct-11 Comsccore
  • 30.03% Share for Travel, Oct-11 Comscore
  • 22.38% Share for Automotive, Oct-11 Comscore
  • 18.69% Share for Shopping, Oct-11 Comscore
  • 16.29% Share for Health, Oct-11 Comscore

If these stats weren’t enough to dampen your holiday spirit, Google now is even prioritizing their own products above the paid search listings on their search engine. This creates a major conflict for the advertisers that have made Google what it is today and may force those clients to pay even more if their advertising is to remain competitive in this new bidding landscape. Google clearly is leveraging its position of power with consumers to launch new products and ensure their own success. The latest example of this is the promotion of their Chrome browser on the Google homepage. As you can see from the chart below, Chrome is rocketing to the position of #1 browser, a rank it is projected to achieve by June 2012.

Google is now a major threat to every business in the publishing and advertising marketplace. In the short term, while they may appear to be a superior partner that provides revenue and marketing innovation, I believe that over the long term they are eroding the value of each and every business in the media sales and publishing value chain. And, worst of all, they are charging heavily for the privilege. I’d estimate that for every dollar spent by an advertiser in the media buying process, Google captures upwards of 25% in tolls (via their various ad services, DFA, Invite, DFP, AdX, Motif, Admeld, etc.), thereby minimizing revenue and profits for publishers and other vendors along the way

So as you reflect on 2011 and consider whom you want to partner with in 2012, give some thought to the short versus the long term. What is your value proposition to clients? And who do you ultimately want to run your business … the Grinch or You?

Have a great holiday and Happy New Year!

The views expressed here reflect the views of the author alone, and do not necessarily reflect the views of 24/7 Real Media, its affiliates, subsidiaries or its parent company, WPP plc

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Tuesday, December 27th, 2011 news No Comments

Will Groupon Thrive Or Tank In Q4? This Chart Holds The Key (GRPN)

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/this-chart-tells-you-whether-groupon-will-thrive-or-tank-in-q4-2011-12


groupon girl

Groupon’s Q4 2011 couldn’t be more crucial: Will it see the revenue bump it needs from holiday shoppers to justify its business model? Or will sales collapse following CEO Andrew Mason’s promised pullback on marketing and customer acquisition spending?

The Wall Street Journal reports that gross billings at the company rose just 1.5 percent from September to October, and not 22 percent as previously estimated.

Has the company reached a plateau before falling of a cliff? Or is it merely taking a pre-Thanksgiving breather before continuing its climb up the Christmas sales ladder?

The company could go either way. Until recently, the company has been dependent on a cash float (and the money it raised in its IPO, of course) to stay in business. Groupon generally makes a loss each quarter. It funds its operations by taking revenues from customers’ credit cards immediately and then delaying for 30 days or so the share of those sales it owes to the merchants who made the offers. As long as there is a greater amount of new money coming in than old money owed, Groupon continues to function.

But what happens if Groupon enters a period in which its revenues decline? At most companies that isn’t too problematic — management can cut expenses to remain profitable. But at Groupon the company’s marketing and customer acquisition expenses are closely related to its revenues. It is not at all clear whether Groupon’s revenues will continue to rise if Mason cuts costs. ! Here’s a chart showing Groupon’s net revenues plotted against its total operating expenses:

groupon

As you can see, in Q3 Mason pulled back on expenses (the green line) in hopes of seeing a profit, but revenue growth (the red line) began to lose steam. The WSJ report suggests it hasn’t regained momentum since, but the October sales period doesn’t include the Christmas run-up.

In Q4, this chart is all you will need to understand whether Groupon can mature into a business that isn’t funded by stock sales. If Mason can get the red line above the green line, or if he can keep the red line moving upward, then he should be congratulated.

If he cannot, then the company — and its investors — will need to do some serious thinking about whether their daily deal business model is viable or not.

SEE ALSO: Groupon Allegedly Hacked Merchant’s Email To Alter Contract

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Monday, December 12th, 2011 news No Comments

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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