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Gartner Magic Quadrant; a dark horse closing up the outside fence…

Gartner Magic Quadrant: Social Software

Just been reading the Gartner Magic Quadrant: Social Software. Jive  come out as the clear leaders, closely followed by IBM and Microsoft (the latter featuring better on ability to execute). Other notables – Drupal, Telligent, SocialText and blueKiwi jostle with Google for the Visionary space. Gartner wonder if Google’s move into the enterprise is opportunistic. I think it’s strategic. Open Text and Atlassian feature as Challengers.

I think the horse racing up the outside fence as they close into the paddock will be Thought Farmer. Their biggest weakness is the fact they don’t have any big customers, a fact that their alliance with the Dachis group is bound to change! I enjoyed their latest blog too The Problem of the Intranet – so much so I actually read it on my iPod Touch! Touche to the Canadians!

n.b…Hmm, I wonder where WordPress will feature in future Magic Quadrants?

Enterprise 2.0

Google is after SharePoint

Another interesting move from Google spotted here by Rob Diana and following on from my points about their desktop notification API as an internal comms engine:

As Dion Hinchcliffe tweeted they’ve got some way to go but a clearer picture of their longer term strategy is getting a lot less fuzzy. In the long run, Google are after the market space of SharePoint


Subscribe to RSS via e-mail

This feed feature is now fixed. Just one niggle after Google took over Feedburner and removed the Feedburner ID.

Enterprise 2.0

Flock vs. Chrome : RSS

flockSo far Flock beats Chrome hands down when it comes to RSS reader. In fact Flock beats all players when it comes to RSS. Not sure what it is about Flock’s built in reader but it just seems to work so well. It runs as a sidebar amongst all the other social media functionality that Flock provides and the integration with the actual feeds and their web pages is as seamless as any I’ve seen. For me it’s the number one reason for using Flock as I’m underwhelmed by the rest of the social media apps it hosts – sometimes they work and other times they don’t and I’ve never got the WordPress one to function correctly.



chromeChrome’s RSS reader is completely web based and while it looks a bit like Flock’s it’s way off on functionality. In fact it looks a bit like a beta. This is a shame as I like Chrome’s slickness. Adding a feed and then making sure it’s added to the right place is much more difficult that Flock. Navigation both between feeds and in the feeds themselves is also a bit flakey. 

My vote is 8/10 for Flock and RSS with 4/10 for Chrome. A lot more work needed with Google’s offering.

Communications Enterprise 2.0

Every Cloud has a Chrome Lining

via-vietteYesterday I downloaded Microsoft’s Live Writer after Neville Hobson gave it a plus. Trouble is it downloaded not only the Blogging tool but a villain’s swag bag of other goodies too. I now need to find a new ’round-2it’ to unpack them and see what’s on offer. As the angel fish are looking fed up and after a big water change I don’t think this will happen soon.

Another big factor are all the WordPress Plugins I’m now using, especially the SEO and Tagging ones. These have now become key factors in my publishing as I try and increase readership and reach (OK get Google to find me) and ensure that my content is tagged right for Calais/SemanticProxy.

And then there’s RSS. The integration between Flock and RSS is the best I’ve seen. The fact I can flip from a side bar of feeds to my RSS summary pages is a big plus for me when I’m writing my Blog. It’s then a case of copying the quotes and URLs from that browser to Chrome. Well that would be OK if there wasn’t a big big problem here.

What I find is that if I run Chrome and Flock simultaneously then the old Dell box I’m using grinds to a halt. There seems to be some sort of resource hogging going on between them and Chrome loses the battle. Chrome is an app I like, but maybe it’s a bridge too far for Google. 

lego-googleInternetnews wonder this too and base this not on the fact that it makes an old dicky PC run so slow it’s in reverse, but on the fact that it is such a new app. Chrome they point out was in beta for just 4 months before going gold. ‘Why so rash for Google?’ they ponder and come up with the answer that Chrome is not only part of Google’s secret operating system, it’s the actual UI for the OS. And perhaps they wonder, perhaps…

Perhaps Google’s browser is a new UI to the cloud.

And they’re not alone here. PC Advisor advise us that Android is already an OS and that Chrome takes us nearer to…?well the cloud:

By so carefully binning the user agent string from its OS, Google has ensured that other, less sensitive data is retained. Or to put it another way, it’s the perfect security setup for an operating system based in the cloud.

chrome-girlWhat’s more…it’s all Free. Woo Yay for the ‘great unwashed’ say PC Advisor:

Users tend to be a great deal more forgiving of software that’s free, than that they’re forced to shell out a mint for.

CNET are of a like mind and point out that it complments Googles already impressive swathe of freebies. Add to that a canny observation from the Google Operating System Blog that Google are conducting a highly aggressive promo for Chrome. Now it’s out of beta so quickly they point out, it can be bundled with those other freebies that people want such as their toolbar or Google Earth. This distribution as we learned earlier could be done with some crafty fast caching

google-wallpaper1Thus in a jiffy, Google have set up all the means to distribute via a 2-tier fast-track, a spanking brand new OS, with a funky UI via the cloud and for the cloud.Let’s just hope it’s ready when they release it.

Communications Enterprise 2.0

ProBlogger’s top SEO Plugins

These are very good – Google is now picking up my site after a migration:

ProBlogger’s top SEO Plugins


Google’s Net Necessities

A lot written  following from The Wall Street Journal’s article on Google and net neutrality: Google Wants Its Own Fast Track on the Web. John Battelle for example, recalls his interview with Vint Cerf, Google’s net-neutrality guru and compares this with the WSJ news.  Over at CNET Declan McCullagh ponders the significance and the PoV:

…if there’s a bit of confusion here, that’s to be expected. Much like pornography is in the eye of the beholder, so is Net neutrality.

Google had lobbied vigorously against any attempt to create a ‘2-tier system’. The idea is that those with money, Google for example, might pay for a fast-track for their data. This concept stirred up fierce controversy, the likes of which have not been seen since a similar idea was proposed for Oxford Street pedestrians.

Google’s legal-beagle Richard Witt has called the Journal’s article ‘confused’ and explains that Google don’t really understand how the net works. It’s all about caching and colocation says Witt. Sympathy and credulity for such sentiments are voiced by industry sage Om Malik who nevertheless expresses concern (and mixed metaphors) over the possible outcome of any such move:

…this move will be like swinging the tiger by the tail. The carriers will start with a fraction of the revenues, but over a period of time they can increase their cut, and Google would have no way to put the genie back in the bottle.

Malik closes by admitting that while Google has noble do-no-evil principles, ultimately it’s just like any other monopoly. I tend to agree somewhat, but I’d also note this monopoly needs to contend with one salient fact namely that what it may or may not be toying with, is actually a minor fact, when compared to the network itself. They’re not in theory at least if the WSJ is right, proposing to alter traffic itself, just to slip ISPs a back or fore hander to speed up their own traffic.

When a monopoly starts to even look like it’s thinking of rigging the tills augmenting revenue streams, then its competitors in the wider market tend to start to profess their own innocence and at times, politick disinterest. Take for example Microsoft who the WSJ notes:

…appealed to Congress to save network neutrality just two years ago, has changed its position completely. “Network neutrality is a policy avenue the company is no longer pursuing,” Microsoft said in a statement. The Redmond, Wash., software giant now favors legislation to allow network operators to offer different tiers of service to content companies.

Whichever way this transpires, all in all though it’s small beer. Why so? Well if Google go ahead then they commodify traffic, which is a salient trait of all market relations and to which the internet is no escapee. But this is tinkering with the traffic. And nothing like say altering the shape and traffic of the network itself. Wouldn’t that be like allowing cycle louts onto the pavement?…

Enterprise 2.0

Cloudy thinking & clever data

Souce: Dion Hinchcliffe

I find the following worthy of a scribble so I don’t forget,

Amazon’s use of APIs is making its network traffic rocket 

Microsoft has lost a top data center nerd to Amazon

Amazon has launched an elastic cloud

Amazon is building a giant new datacenter near a big dam

Google already has one

Microsoft’s Azure is a service living in their data centers and on the net

There’s no standard OS for clouds

The code needs to live somewhere and that where has laws

It’s all hype

The Q for me though is this – what happens to clouds if the network itself gets a bit smarter?

Communications Enterprise 2.0

MySpaceID: Google 1, Microsoft 0

A great post from Rick Turoczy on readwriteweb on the ongoing format login scrap between Facebook and MySpace. Rick comes down firmly in favour of MySpace arguing that their way is more Open and favours interoperability. What’s more he says, MySpaceID:

fires a very real shot across Facebook’s bow. And continues to set the stage for the tag-team match between the more proprietary Facebook-Microsoft and the more open MySpace-Google. (source)

Over at cnet, Caroline McCarthy explains that MySpace are building on the open standards of ‘OpenSocial’ and ‘OpenID’ and says that MySpace are partnering with the giant European SP Vodafone and souped-up bespoke RSS factory Netvibes. I use both of these and like the service and reckon that this alliance might well be interesting.

Why so? Well Rick likens the MySpaceID move to the days of 1.0 when more adventurous ISPs opened the cracks in the walled gardens of AoL and Compuserve. This he says, led to the more open web we enjoy today. Thus the development from MySpace-Google also opens the way for a more open (and user-friendly) 2.0 web, which has to be a positive development. Add that to Vodafone’s reach and Netvibes’ personalised functional-funkiness and we’re also looking at some nicely synched up apps in future.


An intriguing quote from Charlene Li on the FT Tech Blog on this topic:

It’s not about one standard winning over the other, it’s not about Betamax versus VHS…At some point everything will connect, because the user will absolutely demand it.

We all will, but if one is closed and proprietary, hasn’t the battle been lost by then? As an alternative Richard Waters wonders if the primary sign-in app (i.e the winner) will define who/what we are online. And if Facebook is the winner, are we looking at 3.0 being a closed garden? I hope not…

Enterprise 2.0

Paper, Stone, Scissors, erm hold on…

Following on from my piece on Google’s Open Social – as I was sorting out read and unreads on my RSS feeds I noticed another posting today on Open Social and the rest at by Richard MacManus at – The Distributed Social Networking Puzzle: Putting The Pieces Together.

Richard’s article looks at the nitty gritty of what’s going on with DiSo / Noserub,and the “BigCo’s” Open Social from Google and Facebook’s Connect. He explains why it’s not quite hold your breath time:

There is confusion right now because all the commercial vendors are positioning themselves as open – yet they don’t necessarily connect to each other! […] So the fact that all of the main pieces of the distributed social networking puzzle are still in beta, goes some way to explaining why ordinary people can’t connect many of their profiles just yet.

Of note, the posting is getting a lot of replies and the question of ‘interoperabilty’ vs ‘open’ is coming up time and time again, not to mention the commercial interests at play.