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In case you haven't heard Facebook's 26-year-old founder Mark Zuckerberg is Time's Person of the Year. Only 25-year-old Charles Lindbergh, Time's first Man of the Year 83 years ago was younger. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, the popular choice, lost out mainly because he's a destroyer and Zuckerberg's a builder, according to what Time's managing editor Rich Stengel said on CNBC Wednesday morning when the magazine's choice was unveiled. Zuckerberg's official citation reads "for connecting more than half a billion people [a tenth of the world's population] and mapping the social relations among them (something that has never been done before); for creating a new system of exchanging information that has become both indispensable and sometimes a little scary; and finally, for changing how we all live our lives in ways that are innovative and even optimistic." Zuc... (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)

Cloud Expo Silicon Valley: Zero to Empire in 89 Days

Slide Deck: Zero to Empire in 89 Days Check your misconceptions about Social Media at the door.  Forget about "buzz" and "awareness": Social Media can be - and should be - a huge revenue channel for your organization. In his session at the 13th International Cloud Expo®, Hollis Tibbetts, Director for Global Marketing Operations for Dell Software Group, reviewed the strategies, techniques, tools, "dos & don'ts" that will help you - whether you're an entrepreneur or a multi-national corporation - create practical and actionable plans for turning Social Media into a reliable and measurable revenue machine. This session is based on the presenter's real-life experiences and "lesson's learned" from the practical applications of Social Media as both an entrepreneur and as part of a Fortune 100 corporation. Explore Cloud Expo® Sponsorship & Exhibit Opportunities ! Speaker... (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)

Will Office 365 Redefine Enterprise Applications?

There is a of excitement in the air about Microsoft's Office 365 offering. Apart from the traditional view of reduction in licensing cost and no Upgrade issues which the SaaS basically offers, we can also derive some enterprise benefits from it if all the partners and ISV support the same. This one is one such pattern. Office 365 Office 365 provides anywhere access to email, documents, contacts, and calendars so you're always up-to-date. From scheduling to interactive online meetings to sharing files, you're uniting cloud-based services with the productivity tools people use every day. At this time , Office 365 will be Microsoft's flagship SaaS offering with : Office Professional Plus Exchange Online Sharepoint Online Lync Online Windows Azure The Windows Azure platform is poised to radically change the way Microsoft architects and developers think about building and ... (more)

Reach for the Cloud - Toronto

My 'day job' is to help IT service providers master the new Cloud Computing age, to create and sell a portfolio of next generation products that the technology enables. Although this is a very technical area, it's actually the theme of this site, of Social Innovation, that actually provides the best context for how to do this. Cloud-enabled Innovation One of the most basic but important functions of marketing new technologies is that you align to the business needs of your customers, not just the IT folks. In the case of government this means focusing more on policies and political challenges and less on virtualization. To this end the most relevant government policy area is 'Open Government' - This technology goes hand in hand with enabling new open source methods of working and thinking, and provides the most compelling benefits for its adoption. A recent white ... (more)

IDC Predicts Cloud Services to Create a New Mainstream for the IT Industry

Transformation has been a recurring theme in the annual International Data Corporation (IDC) Predictions over the past several years. During this time, a wave of disruptive technologies has emerged and evolved, forged by the pressures of a global economic recession. In 2011, and certainly beyond, IDC expects these technologies - cloud services, mobile computing, and social networking - to mature and coalesce into a new mainstream platform for both the IT industry and the industries it serves. "In 2011, we expect to see these transformative technologies make the critical transition from early adopter status to early mainstream adoption," said Frank Gens, senior vice president and chief analyst at IDC. "As a result, we'll see the IT industry revolving more and more around the build-out and adoption of this next dominant platform, characterized by mobility, cloud-base... (more)

Facebook Buys Beluga, But Has Bigger Fish to Fry

Facebook - which evidently imagines itself eventually replacing corporate web sites, according to a piece by CNET quoting the commercial director of Facebook UK who spoke at a Technology for Marketing and Advertising conference in London - has acquired mobile messaging start-up Beluga. It said so on Beluga's web site, scotching the possibility of Google buying the venture-backed GroupMe-rival. Financial details weren't disclosed. Founded by three ex-Google people, Beluga lets groups of friends communicate in private using smartphones via a so-called pod. Its six-month-old application is free for iPhones and Android-based smartphones. At least for the moment. Users can share text and pictures. ... (more)

HP Offers Products & Services to Deal with Mobile Computing & Social Media

HP this week announced a suite of products and services aimed at overcoming the challenges presented by the convergence of some of today's hottest business trends, mobile computing and social media. The four software products and three services are designed to help enterprises leverage traditional systems of record, while creating an improved and extended presence and engaging better with customers, partners, and even employees. IT-driven systems of record, while they serve up useful information, are usually commodities and in themselves don't create business differentiation. The new offerings, however, provide systems of engagement, which change the way enterprises interact with those people now using tablets and smartphones in increasing numbers, as well as through social media. [Disclosure: HP is a sponsor of BriefingsDirect podcasts.] "Unless we worry about a syst... (more)

Facebook’s Pied Piper IPO Supposedly Priced at $28-$35

The great Facebook IPO is supposed to happen on Friday May 18. The company's big investor-pitching pre-IPO roadshow is supposed to kick off this Monday and only see some appearances by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, according to the Wall Street Journal. CFO David Ebersman and COO Sheryl Sandberg will reportedly handle the bulk of the meetings. Initial East Coast meetings are supposed to be stuffed to the gills. But you can see the video now (http://facebook.retailroadshow.com/launch.html). Real pricing never happens until the night before an IPO. But it claimed in a regulatory filing late Thursday that it's shooting for $28-$35 a share, a relatively broad range that values the joint at $96 billion under the magical $100 billion, leading the smart money to think it and its underwriters are aiming for a pop. There'll be at least 337.4 million shares on offer. And t... (more)

Facebook’s IPO: A View From The West

I remember the hype going into the Facebook IPO and how people were literally drooling over what was to be the seminal event to reinvigorate our financial markets, create wealth for thousands and cement Facebook as the success story of this generation. Well two out of three ain’t bad. Many thought of this as a “must buy” and “can’t miss” opportunity to make money. Some were focused on long term capital gains but others looked for the fast IPO flip. The reasoning for the latter was “if LinkedIn took flight the first day then I can’t wait for Facebook! Its going to take off!” But it didn’t. Not even, close. In fact the dirty little secret of the 3rd largest IPO and largest technology offering in the US is that Facebook is barely trading at the IPO price. Up less than 1% from the initial offering price. While some are running victory laps over the “perfect pricing” of ... (more)