Archive for the ‘Blogs and Blogging’ Category

Facebook & Its Apps

May 3, 2008

One of the TechMeme stories now is about most of Facebook’s apps being useless & the consequences of it. Nick O’Neil at allfacebook writes,

I’ve been wondering myself if Facebook would eventually start removing inactive applications and more spammy applications from the application directory. In my own opinion this would provide for a better user experience given that navigating 22,000 applications is not very feasible.

Do you think Facebook should start removing spammy applications from the platform? What changes do you think should be made?

Facebook apps are in a way similar to blog sites & their relationship with Google Adsense. Just like Facebook’s most apps being ‘fun’ ones, so are most of the long tail blogs – either splogs or scrapper sites, are inactive or have very few visitors. But as Google needs to keep these blogs for maximizing its returns, so does Facebook have to keep as many apps as possible. Tough rope to walk then for Facebook to clean up apps, be friendly with as many developers as possible and at the same time give its users a good user experience.

Vasanth Sridharan at Silicon Alley Insider,

Who benefits? “Good” app-makers and app-marketers, obviously, as well as Facebook, which gets to unclog its system. Oh, and it’s good for Facebook users. Because with 23,000+ apps on the site, it’s hard to find ones you want to use, whether or not they’re actually useful.

But this is most beneficial for app factories like Slide and RockYou, who should be able to consolidate their already substantial lead.

If we apply Pareto’s rule, the top apps belonging to Slide & RockYou already should be taking in most of the traffic. Slimming down the 22,000 apps will increase their share marginally. So, while the cutting down of apps will definitely benefit Facebook users, it’s a dilemma now for Facebook itself. My prediction : they may cut just a few very spammy ones.

Facebook should be providing a default set of best apps from across categories to choose from when a new user joins (not sure whether it is already there), something similar to what Netvibes (modules) or Bloglines (feeds) does. Give more importance to productivity boosting apps and such. And encourage top app providers like Slide & RockYou to produce really useful apps in categories other than ‘fun’.


Issue with Google Blogger Captcha

March 13, 2007

Dunno whether it is only me but am having trouble with Blogger’s captcha. I have just been getting the words ‘Visual Verification’ and not the captcha image in a couple of blogs I wanted to comment.

Blogger Captcha Error

One of the blog posts where I had wanted to comment. See whether you are able to see the captcha there. Is Google aware of this issue or am I the only one facing this issue?

Wikicamp is on

February 25, 2007

So, the big day is here. We are here at TIDEL Park, Chennai and the event’s just started. Along with Syed, Kiruba does the usual intro talk. Jimmy Wales is getting ready with his preso. Here he is. Starts straightaway – how large Wikipedia is, how most of the internet is powered by open technologies, how/why his previous idea for wikipedia failed in 1999, his vision for his new projects – Wikia, Wikia Search.

Will be trying to live blog the event & upload photos as and when possible. Have created a wiki at Zoho Wiki as well – Will try updating the page as well.

Comment spam from !@#^%$

February 13, 2007

I’m seeing the below comment or a variation of it in many of the blogs I visited in the last one month or so.

Have you seen the new India search engine !@#^%$ they added all the cool features of popular products like MySpace, YouTube, Ebay, Craigslist, etc. all for free to use and specifically for India. Anyone else try this yet?

!@#^%$ First to Blend Search, Social Network, Video Sharing and Auctions Into One Seamless Product for Indian Internet Users. Have you seen the new India search engine !@#^%$ they added all the cool features of popular products like MySpace, YouTube, Ebay, Craigslist, etc. all for free to use and specifically for India. Anyone else try this yet?

!@#^%$ First to Blend Search, Social Network, Video Sharing and Auctions Into One Seamless Product for Indian Internet Users.

Reminds me of a similar episode sometime back. Haven’t seen bloggers taking this up as an issue this time around (could find just this one). Fed up with comment spam, I suppose.

Chicken & egg, did anyone say ‘problem’?

November 17, 2006

Got this from Seth Godin :

The quick background is that chicken and egg is a cliche for a (false) conundrum: which came first? [it’s false because the egg came first… the only thing a chicken can come out of is a chicken egg, while something that’s not quite a chicken yet could lay a real chicken egg…

WordPress not a worthy Blogger competitor?

October 15, 2006

PCWorld had an article about the recent troubles that Google’s Blogger platform is having. The article talked about the features competitors long had, listed “Yahoo, Microsoft, AOL, Six Apart and others” as competitors but there was no mention of WordPress! Lft me very much surprised.

Google Blogger’s comments setting sucks

October 6, 2006

Blogger’s comment setting option sucks. The default setting is ‘Only Registered Users’ meaning only those who have blogspot blogs can comment.

This is so mean and very much a trouble for bloggers as it expects a commenter to have a account. And which in turn leads to reduced reader comments as folks having blogs in other blog platforms or who haven’t got a blog cannot comment. And imagine someone who isn’t tech savvy or who is new to blogging. Will he/she visit the comments setting page & do the change?

Even the upcoming Blogger Beta has the same default setting. Are the people concerned at Google Blogger listening?

Custom search engines

October 5, 2006

Techcrunch had an article recently about the various things being done at Google. One is a Rollyo-type custom search engine which will allow you to restrict your search to a few sites of your choice. I liked the idea of Rollyo very much but couldn’t get to use it as the base search engine is Yahoo’s. It would be great if Google had two versions – one based on the regular Google search engine & the other on Google Blog Search engine.

BlogCamp : Some personal disappointment/displeasure towards the end

September 10, 2006

Got a chance to speak on ‘Blogs & Zoho’. My presentation was about how blogs have helped Zoho & how Zoho is helping bloggers by providing easier widgets. Started off with how we track the blogs mentioning Zoho – like using Technorati, Google Blog Search & Feedster – and how we are quick to respond to blogger comments, catering to their needs. Then went on to give some examples of how we link to bloggers who write about Zoho in Zoho blogs, how the bloggers are pleased due to such gestures & how this creates a ripple effect. As specific examples, I used Robin Good making a superb video out of our mute screencast on Zoho Projects & putting it on YouTube, how links from Scoble & TechCrunch sent our traffic soaring, how we got dugg once we got TechCrunched etc. Then gave the examples of the Indian bloggers noticing us when Zoho got mentioned as one of the most innovative companies outside Silicon Valley by Business 2.0.

All this was said in the good spirit of how other corporates can benefit from such practices. Hmm, my point was how important it was for companies to listen to the blogosphere & how Zoho can be seen as a successful case study as a company reaching out to bloggers. But the audience thought I was promoting the Zoho brand & that put a premature end to my presentation. May be, Zoho being one of the BlogCamp sponsors made things more murkier.

I have put my side of it. Your take?

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Session on Corporate Blogging

September 10, 2006

Suman Kumar just finished his talk about ‘Intranet Blogging’. We at AdventNet have a successful intranet blog for quite some time now (infact my blog there was sort of a predecessor to my current one at Zoho Blogs) & it was nice hearing someone talk on the subject.

Nidhi Dewan of Web Chutney is talking now.

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