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…

Cayley – an open-source graph inspired by the graph database behind Freebase and Google’s Knowledge Graph. Its goal is to be a part of the developer’s toolbox where Linked Data and graph-shaped data (semantic webs, social networks, etc) in general are concerned.

cayley

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:

Twitter Is Not Dying

Twitter is not a social network. Not primarily, anyway. It’s better described as a social media platform, with the emphasis on “media platform.” And media platforms should not be judged by the same metrics as social networks.

Social networks connect people with one another. Those connections tend to be reciprocal. Facebook even checks in on you now and then to make sure you’ve actually met the folks who are sending you friend requests. As a social network, its chief function is to help friends, family, and acquaintances keep in touch.

Media platforms, by contrast, connect publishers with their public. Those connections tend not to be reciprocal.

11 ways you can tweet better

  1. Use a hashtag to drive the conversation.
  2. Organize a live event using Twitter.
  3. Tweet the past as if it were the present.
  4. Have a celebrity take over your account.
  5. Join the conversation where it takes place.
  6. You ask the questions.
  7. Live-tweet a breaking news event.
  8. Team up with the co-stars and use hashtags to drive fans to a TV show.
  9. Use Vine videos.
  10. Use a custom timeline to curate the best content.
  11. Voting and displaying on air

Ekisto – visualizing online habitats

Slashdot is linking to Ekisto – a project to visualize online communities like if they were cities.  So far there are only GitHub, StackOverflow and Friendfeed (really? Friendfeed?).  I’ve seen plenty of data visualization, especially for GitHub, but I have to say that this is one of the most interesting ones ever.

github visualization

 

Here is a quote from the About page that explains how it works:

Ekisto comes from ekistics, the science of human settlements.

Ekisto is an interactive visualization of three online communities: StackOverflow, Github and Friendfeed. Ekisto tries to imagine and map our online habitats using graph algorithms and the city as a metaphor.

A graph layout algorithm arranges users in 2D space based on their similarity. Cosine similarity is computed based on the users’ network (Friendfeed), collaborate, watch, fork and follow relationships (Github), or based on the tags of posts contributed by users (StackOverflow). The height of each user represents the normalized value of the user’s Pagerank (Github, Friendfeed) or their reputation points (StackOverflow).

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.