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"We are the nation that put cars in driveways and computers in offices; the nation of Edison and the Wright brothers; of Google and Facebook. In America, innovation doesn’t just change our lives. It’s how we make a living." With this one sentence, spoken Tuesday during his State of the Union address, President Barack Obama ushered in once and for all the Age of Sociotechnology, the age that recognizes the importance of the interaction between people and technology in both workplaces and society. Obama recognizes perhaps better than anyone in America the extent to which technology nowadays is socially constructed and society is technically constructed. "We are the nation...of Google and Facebook" - those eight words may well go on to become the most significant President Obama has ever uttered to date. For better or for worse, it would seem that the destiny of the U.S.... (more)

Microsoft Invests in Foursquare to Add Data to Services, Bing

Foursquare is getting some help from Microsoft as it seeks to turn its location-based mobile app into a sustainable business. Microsoft has invested $15 million and agreed to a strategic partnership with the New York-based startup, Chief Executive Dennis Crowley said in an interview. The investment will be added to the $35 million investment round Foursquare announced last December and which valued the company at about $650 million. In addition to an equity investment, Microsoft has signed a multi-year contract to license Foursquare data in services such as its mobile operating system and Bing search engine. With that deal, Microsoft becomes Foursquare’s single biggest data licensee, though Crowley declined to specify how much the contract is worth. Foursquare has collected a trove of data about more than 60 million restaurants, shops and other points of interest wi... (more)

Smartling Named One of the Top Marketing Tools of 2014 by Smart Selling Tools

NEW YORK, Sept. 2, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Smartling today announced its inclusion in Smart Selling Tools' Top Marketing Tools of 2014 eBook, which recognizes the best marketing tools to drive revenue in business-to-business (B2B) sales. Smart Selling Tools is a nationally recognized consulting firm dedicated to helping marketers and sellers apply processes and technology to drive revenue. The Top Marketing Tools eBook targets B2B marketers seeking increased lead conversions and higher revenue contribution. With a goal of enabling modern marketing strategies, the guide features tools that identify, prioritize and nurture leads; quickly generate more sales-ready leads; and deliver rich content that converts prospects into leads and leads into buyers. "Smartling has been recognized as one of the Top Marketing Tools of 2014 because it offers tremendous benefit to innovati... (more)

Top 50 Bloggers on Cloud Computing

Ever since I first published here my tentative list of Top Players in the Cloud Computing Ecosystem - now expanded to a list of 250 and growing daily thanks to community feedback via my Twitter account (@jg21) and a very kind mention by ReadWriteWeb - there have been suggestions that another prism through which to view cloud computing might be that of people rather than companies. Now Michael Sheehan has encouraged me to Just Do It, so let me get started...as per the previous Top Cloud Players list, this list will a work-in-progress and is totally porous, so don't hesitate to ping or tweet me if there are folks I have missed. In particular if you are a journalist whose "beat" is Cloud Computing, please let's be hearing from you, and we can maybe widen this list from Cloud Bloggers to Cloud Commentators. For now though let's get started. In alphabetical order - to av... (more)

Social Login: The Right Solution for Your Business?

What have you done online today - checked LinkedIn? Facebook? Twitter? Opened and sent business emails? Used business apps? Every business employee also has a private life - and it's becoming increasingly difficult to keep the two separate. Rather than ignoring the growing role of social media in your customers' and employees' lives, many businesses are starting to take advantage of it. One way to do this is through social login. Social login is a way to use social network credentials to create accounts on other sites or applications. From a business perspective, you may decide to offer social login to your customers. For this discussion, we'll call this the business-to-customer or B2C use case. There are also good reasons for offering employees the ability to access business applications using a social login. We'll call this the business-to-employee or B2E use case.... (more)

Facebook, Google, and the Near-Term Future of the USA

On the day when the Dow Jones Industrial Average topped 12,000 for the first time since June 2008, it was impossible not to correlate the eloquence and optimism of President Obama's "State of the Union" speech on Tuesday night with the restoration of a sense of perspective and hope in the USA about the future. Obama grasped the nettle full-on. "We are poised for progress," he declared, adding: "Two years after the worst recession most of us have ever known, the stock market has come roaring back. Corporate profits are up. The economy is growing." As one blogger expressed it, though - and he is a former Goldman Sachs trader called Tyler Durden, so he ought to know wheref he speaks: "There was a massive pink elephant in the room called reality though." Durden's gripe is with what he deems to be the unreality of Obama's praising Google and Facebook so highly in an Ameri... (more)

Exclusive Q&A with Mike Vernal of Facebook

More than a thousand sites are using Facebook Connect, says Mike Vernal, a member of the Facebook Platform engineering team, in this Exclusive Q&A with SYS-CON's Web 2.0 Journal. Some prominent examples Vernal mentions include Citysearch for local reviews, Joost and Vimeo for video sharing, and a number of blogs, including TechCrunch and Gawker. Web 2.0 Journal: You’ve been closely involved with developing and launching Facebook Connect. How would you summarize the chief strategic benefit of this service for Facebook’s 150M or so users? Mike Vernal: I think the answer is twofold. First, Facebook Connect allows users to take their Facebook profile and friends with them to any site on the Web. This is pretty powerful, in that it saves users the hassle of creating another username and password, filling out their profile information, and running a contact importer on ev... (more)

Are We Tweeting Ourselves To Poverty?

So James Franco has declared that 'Social Media Is Over' and done the unthinkable...he has shut down his Twitter account. Will the world stop spinning? Is this the end of western civilization? What next, will people stop asking questions on Quora, will they cease to publish photos on Facebook, will we see the end of Skype-messaging? Worst of all, might the long-awaited Godot known as "Enterprise 2.0" now never turn up? Well I have news for us all: Franco may be righter than he knows. It is not that Social Media Is Dead, however. It is that "Social Media" itself is too fanciful a term, right up there with "Social Shopping." Personally I am not convinced that Twitter is primarily a social medium, I see it more as a collaboration tool that has been momentarily sidelined and become stereotyped in its usage despite its infinite applicability. But then that is the curse of "Soci... (more)

Why Blogging is Not a True Co-Technology

Speaking Thursday in Tokyo at The New Context Conference 2010, the founder of Twitter, Biz Stone (pictured), put onto the record two sentences that will stand the test of time in the era of social computing: "Twitter isn't a triumph of technology it's a triumph of humanity. A more connected world leads to a more empathic world." Interestingly, Stone makes this observation in the self-same week that saw the sale of TechCrunch, Inc. to New York-based AOL - triggering a spate of commentaries along the lines of This Is the Death of Independent Blogging. Is this an inflexion point? Hell, yes. And a big one. This week is also the week in which, as Guy Kawasaki reminds us, that Twitter's traffic overtook that of MySpace. So what is going on? Why is independent blogging being characterized as dying at the very moment that tweeting is becoming as natural a part of the interconn... (more)

Opinion: Is This the #Jan25 Uprising?

First came Tunisia's "Jasmine Revolution" and now we have the "#Jan25 Uprising" - the world's first revolution named for a Twitter hash tag. Calling it the "Twitter Revolution" misses the beauty of the hash tag itself, and besides what would one then call the upcoming social unrest in other Arab States? So-called "hashtag dates" are already being planned for the Arab world: Sudan #Jan30, Yemen #Feb3, Syria #Feb5, Algeria #Feb12 and Bahrain #Feb14. Photo by Arabist, via TwitPic I am not the only one who argues that "Twitter Revolution" is not the right term. Ulyses Mejias has written vehemently that "...[I]t is [absurd] to refer to events in Iran, Tunisia, Egypt and elsewhere as the Twitter Revolution, the Facebook Revolution, and so on." And he is right. Let me quickly just give the floor to Mejias, since he in turn is generous enough to note that things can sometime... (more)

A Twitter Epiphany? The Power of a Hash Tag (#jan25)

As America - on the East Coast anyway, including in Washington, DC - tucks up in bed, the sun is rising on Egypt. Which seems an appropriate time for @jg21 to briefly explain what I had in mind when resolving for the past 12 hours or so to re-Tweet as many of the comments and links flying around via Twitter as I found meaningful, informative, and (often) inspiring. The Twitter hash tag I have been laser-focused on is #jan25, named for the day on which the country-wide demonstrations in Egypt began. "Freedom of expression is a human right," blogged Twitter co-founder Biz Stone Friday, on Day Four of the blockage by the Egyptian government of Twitter and Facebook. And this was not mere opportunism by Stone, because it is the exact same thing that he said four months ago. Here is what he said already in September: "Twitter isn't a triumph of technology it's a triumph of hu... (more)