A year without Google Reader

Mashable reminds us that it’s been a year since Google Reader has been decommissioned.  They are also doing a survey to find out if people use more of RSS feeds now or less, what they’ve substituted it with and which tools people are using now to follow their favorite feeds.

I’ve completed the survey, but without any visible results just yet, I thought I’d talk about my situation here.  In the last year my use of RSS has decreased significantly.   Even though the actual number of the feeds I am subscribed to has increased, I read them less.  I share less.  I bookmark and blog about less.  And it’ nothing but the tool’s fault.  Even though Feedly is an excellent tool – fast, flexible, with mobile support, and aesthetically pleasing, it simply is not Google Reader, which I was practically embed into.  I’ve looked around for Google Reader alternatives, I tried a few.  Feedly is the best of the bunch for my taste, but it’s different.

So, with that in mind, what happened to all that free time that I used to spend in Google Reader?  Sadly, I have to admit that I’m much more on Facebook now.  Quality-wise, that’s a huge drop.  Instead of following my favorite writers, keeping in touch with all kinds of technology advances, and learning new things, I am now participating in flaming comment wars about nothing, and watching videos of cute kittens and bouncing boobs.  Cheap entertainment swallowed me and spat me out.  It’s exactly like never switching a television set was in the last century.  And it’s a pity.

And the saddest part is that I knew it would happen.  And if I knew, Google definitely knew that too.  And they killed Google Reader anyway.  And it’ll be a long time until I let it go…

Facebook is dead

facebook is dead

Now that’s something you don’t see every day: the whole of Facebook is down – the website, the APIs, the social buttons, etc.

Oh, and I think they need to update the copyright year on this page.

Jokes from the office folks:

How many “f*cks” per second do you think one could hear in the Facebook office right now?

The productivity of the whole world just spiked!

Fun stuff from Twitter:

We have deployed TLS at a large scale using both hardware and software load balancers. We have found that modern software-based TLS implementations running on commodity CPUs are fast enough to handle heavy HTTPS traffic load without needing to resort to dedicated cryptographic hardware. We serve all of our HTTPS traffic using software running on commodity hardware.

Doug Beaver, Facebook
HTTP2 Expression of Interest

Facebook and the Linux kernel

Within Facebook, anyone can look at and change the code in its source repositories. The facebook.com site has its code updated twice daily, he said, so the barrier to getting new code in the hands of users is low. Those changes can be fixes or new features.

As an example, he noted that the “Look Back” videos, which were created by Facebook for each user and reviewed all of their posts to the service, added a huge amount of data and required a lot more network bandwidth. The process of creating and serving all of those videos was the topic of a Facebook engineering blog post. In all 720 million videos were created, which required an additional 11 petabytes of storage, as well as consuming 450 Gb/second of peak network bandwidth for people viewing the videos. The Look Back feature was conceived, provisioned, and deployed in only 30 days, he said.

10 (not so) surprising social media statistics

Fast Company shares the 10 surprising social media statistics that will make you rethink your social strategy.  I wouldn’t go as far as saying that all of them are really all that surprising, but they are mostly interesting.  Here they are in a nutshell:

  1. The fastest growing demographic on Twitter is the 55-64 year age bracket.
  2. 189 million of Facebook’s users are “mobile only”.
  3. YouTube reaches more US adults aged 18-34 than any cable network.
  4. Every second two new members join LinkedIn.
  5. Social media has overtaken port as #1 activity on the web.
  6. LinkedIn has a lower percentage of active users than Pinterest, Google+, Twitter and Facebook.
  7. 93% of marketers use social media for business.
  8. 25% of smartphone owners ages 18-44 say they can’t recall the last time their smartphone wasn’t next to them.
  9. Even though 62% of marketers blog or plan to blog in 2013, only 9% of US marketing companies employ a full-time blogger.
  10. 25% of Facebook users don’t bother with privacy settings.

Read the whole thing for more details, links, stats, visualization, and ideas on how to utilize this information.

Social Fixer – improved Facebook experience

Enhance Facebook And Remove Annoyances!

Social Fixer for Facebook plugs into your browser and improves the existing Facebook.com web site. You get to pick which features you want to use:

  • Filter your news feed by keyword, author, and more
  • Tabbed news feed organizes posts by games, apps, etc
  • Hide parts of the page you don’t want to see
  • Don’t show posts you’ve already read
  • Auto-switch to the Most Recent news feed
  • Add some style with custom themes
  • And much more! See the List of Features.