Aquisitions & Web Journal Aug 11th – 14th, 2010

IBM buys Unica and Web Analytics Demystified has a post about it which adds to my own insights – what’s happening in the Web Analytics space is also happening in the Social Monitoring space as both types of tracking are seen as analytics firms and more and more, analytics firms are being acquired to beef up larger businesses – and that’s basically a good thing as in most cases, the analytic firm, social media or web analytics, provides value mostly when it’s combined with actual business data, but not so much, otherwise.

Heard the news yesterday that Oracle is Suing Google Over Patent Infringement Of Java Within Android- this refers to Oracle‘s acquisition of Sun Micro-systems and the patent for Java, which arose at Sun.   Since Oracle technically owns the patent and Google is using Java in Android – Oracle wants to be paid (big time).  I’m not sure how much this suit will come to as Google seems to always manage to have a “Teflon” persona – where hardly anything thrown at Google ends up sticking.  Still, I’m sure the lawyers at Google will be busier than usual for a while (which is probably a good thing for the lawyers – right?).   As Andy Beal best put it … Oracle’s Revenge on Google is a Dish Best Served Cold.

By the way, did you know that if you live in Indonesia your more than twice more likely to be using Twitter than if you live in …. the United States - according to Comscore – I got the info from Web Analytics World in a post on Twitter Penetration by Country:

Top 20 Markets by Twitter Penetration
June 2010
Total Audience, Age 15+ – Home & Work Locations*
Source: comScore Media Metrix
Location % Reach
Worldwide 7.4
Indonesia 20.8
Brazil 20.5
Venezuela 19.0
Netherlands 17.7
Japan 16.8
Philippines 14.8
Canada 13.5
Mexico 13.4
Singapore 13.3
Chile 13.2
United States 11.9
Turkey 11.0
United Kingdom 10.9
Argentina 10.5
Colombia 9.6
South Korea 9.3
Ireland 8.4
India 8.0
Malaysia 7.7
New Zealand 7.5

Talking about the world – did you know that China is  Moving to Dominate the Next Stage of the Web which comprises the Internet OF Things?

The Chinese municipality of Chongqing and telco giant China Unicom have announced a multi-billion dollar partnership of investment and tax breaks aimed to create as much as $7 billion in annual revenues within five years from what’s called the Internet of Things.

This seems almost as old news – but it’s really not – I remember a few years ago China was involved in building a Second Life Commerce System under the late Robert Lai (who I met in NY shortly before he died) – see China plans virtual world for commerce - the news was picked up by MSNBC almost three years ago

… China’s government is building a vast virtual world dubbed Beijing Cyber Recreation District, which founders say will help the manufacturing superpower evolve into an e-commerce juggernaut.

Some supply-chain experts say the project is impossibly grandiose in its goal to provide direct links between tens of thousands of Chinese manufacturers and millions of individual customers around the world.

Could it be that the Virtual world project has moved to another stage and become the “Internet of Things”?   And what happened to the Virtual Commerce System in the three years it’s had to evolve – did China go anywhere with it or is the Internet of Things in fact what China did?  I don’t know.

By the way, while we’re thinking about China and Europe wiring up the world of intelligent devices that talk to each other (which is exactly what Java was going to do 10 years ago – remember the refrigerator that was going to talk to the coffee maker?  I remember it – it was in 2003 – and even earlier all of the devices were going to use the power grid to talk to each other – but I don’t hear anything about that thesedays) consider that Chris Brogan is telling us that even if our devices may want to talk to each other – we, human beings, might be ready to chuck Social Media because we’re “overloaded”.. what do you think?  According to Brogan…

Human Math

  • If I talk to 100 people on twitter for 6 minutes each, that’s 10 hours.
  • If I respond personally to 120 of the 600 or so emails and contacts I get a day, that’s 2 hours.
  • If I call 10 people for six minutes each to “catch up,” that’s another hour.

100 small Twitter conversations.
120 emails.
10 phone calls.

13 hours.

That’s not work. That’s not necessarily business (though touch and networking aids business). That’s just contact.

13 hours a day on just that.

And that’s just 100 or so people.

Well …. here’s what I think – talking to 100 people via Twitter – might become what “the work” is – but if Chris Brogan is right we might be on the way to taking our “real world contacts” and friends and turning them into their Virtual equivalent – though Chris Brogan didn’t say it that way – here’s what he actually said:

In a world where the hyperconnected accept and understand “ambient connectivity,” but where the rest of our connections and friends from the “real world” don’t, what will that do to relationships of all kinds? How will that translate?

Is there a much more painful crash before us? A social crash?

To me, this is saying … our notions of friendship might change – but then… what else is new?

What makes you Tweet about a presentation?

But if you still want to stay connected and your a conference presenter (see the image above) – I know I’m jumping into another subject here - then you can  Drive Tweets With Your Presentations – and there’s a webinar on Aug 19th with Dan Zarrella of HubSpot (I should read his book and I’ll really try to make the webinar).   That takes me to Mitch Joel and his excellent post .. People Pay For Value – Their Value, Not Yours where Mitch tells us what people are willing to pay for …

In a world of more choices, the former 800-pound gorillas of their chosen industries now have to figure out how they are going to deliver real value. The kind of value that people are willing to pay for.

What have we really learned about value in the past few years?

  • People will pay for an individual song (and maybe an album), but they would like the choice.
  • People will pay for great writing – whether it’s in a magazine, newspaper, book or online. But, it has to be great (and not just your perception of great).
  • People will pay to see a movie – they just might not go to the theatre or to rent it from your physical store any more.
  • People will pay to be entertained.
  • People will pay to learn.
  • People will pay to be better connected.
  • People will pay for an exclusive experience.
  • People will pay for a premium experience.
  • People will pay for better access to customer service.
  • People will pay to avoid hassles.
  • People will pay to get things on their own time schedule (when they want it/how they want it).
  • People will pay for speed (whatever speed means in your industry).
  • People will pay for something that will give them more social clout.
  • People will pay for products that are virtual.
  • People will pay for information.
  • People will pay for more mobility.
  • People will pay for more flexibility.
  • People will pay for more comfort.

Also, I found out about a new search engine for trending topics in Facebook that looks really neat called Booshaka – Booshaka Indexes Trending Facebook Topics for Easy Trend Watching. I tried a few searches including one on Allergies and got some pretty good information that would help a person doing market research for PR.

Booshaka Indexes Trending Facebook Topics for Easy Trend Watching

If you’ve been underwhelmed with Facebook’s public search portal, Booshaka offers a better way to peek at trending topics on Facebook with ranking based on popularity, number of comments, and recent activity.

Booshaka offers the best of both worlds when it comes to Facebook search. You can search either with the basic Facebook search or with the supercharged Booshaka filter in place.

Finally – there’s a war going on with Geo-Location Services – one that rivals the interoperability issues and turf wars of the 1980’s according to Robert Scoble in a post on  how a Tour Scoble took of SimpleGeo reveals why location services can’t get along

1. Their databases describe locations differently, so matching databases is hard.
2. The companies they are building on top of, like Navtek, have contracts that forbid a lot of databases being built on top of them.
3. The really useful data, like real-time views into what restaurants your friends are eating at, is very valuable so companies tend to want to keep that to themselves.

Well, that’s it for a couple of days – there’s always more I could write about – interesting stuff that I read how it got me to think differently about the world around me.  I’ll end with this.

I was working out in a gym with a personal trainer and he told me that half of the battle in working out using an exercise program is maintaining the right form.   That got think about some difficult situations I’ve had pulling data for clients and presentation – and sometimes I find the data doesn’t feel ready to present – for a variety of reasons.

  1. the tools we have to work with (social media monitoring) aren’t mature enough to pull the data we need
  2. the requests are too vague and difficult to define and translate into queries that would generate desired results
  3. there’s not enough time to do the work well and comfortably report and gain insight from  the information – in addition, we might not have figured out why we need the information in the first place.

I have often felt uncomfortable reporting and explaining information that simply doesn’t add up – but the effort to get the data out of the tools (which I will leave nameless) left me so exhausted that I felt as if more space and less pressure would be needed for me to feel comfortable reporting on the results.

That’s when I remembered what the trainer said to me today – it all comes down to figuring out the right “form” when exercising – and perhaps that’s what I haven’t figured out, and what the field of social monitoring struggles with today.

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