The guys behind Maker Faire

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Here I shove my camera in the faces of Philip Torrone and Dale Dougherty. They are two of the names behind Make Magazine (very popular) and the Maker Faire (very popular and very cool). That was on the floor of Maker Faire and we talk about their plans for the future.

This is one of the only videos I didn’t start out by saying “who are you?” That’s because we didn’t plan on doing these interviews. We just ran into Philip while recording a photowalking. Totally unscripted and totally unplanned Maker Faire. What else could be better?

James Robertson asks “where’s the social networking value?”

In a good “can you please cut through the Scoble hype” post, James Robertson notes that he heard all the Twitter hype, then all the Jaiku hype, then all the Pownce hype, and now is hearing all the Facebook hype and wants to know what’s in it for him. The A.Connector podcast talks about the same thing and tells you what value he gets out of these things.

OK, let’s turn on the cynical hat for a moment and stop the hype.

First of all, let’s group Twitter/Jaiku/Pownce together. They are quite different from Facebook, even if there’s a component like those inside Facebook (and the Pownce Facebook app is working again).

Now, none of these things has ANY value if you don’t know anyone on them. They only have value if someone you care about interacting with are on them. I assume that James has friends/family/coworkers/etc who he wants to interact with.

On all of these it’s fun to chat with people. Over on Twitter I’ve been talking with a bunch of people. Plus lots of other people who don’t even know I’m listening posted funny videos.

So, what’s the value?

These things bring interesting things into my life.

Why one over the others?

1. More people you know are on one over the others.
2. You like the way one works better than the others (lately people have been saying Pownce is better in that department than the others).
3. You need a feature the others don’t have. Pownce lets you send music files to other members, for instance. Twitter has an API and was earlier, so it has lots of apps built on top of it. Jaiku is a better aggregator (you can bring in messages from the others, along with blogs and other RSS feeds).

Now, about Facebook, well, it has almost instantly replaced my business card collection AND my contacts over on Outlook. Now if I want to talk with someone I go to Facebook and look them up.

But then you add the application platform to Facebook and you have a whole new beast. That brings a LOT of value and an INCREASING set of values. Today, for instance, the Google Reader app was updated again. There’s nothing else like it on the Internet. So if you want to see what the most popular feed readers are, and what the most popular thing that they are reading, you gotta join Facebook. No alternatives.

Well, OK, the most popular thing in the past 12 hours? Read/Write Web’s list of 10 Facebook Apps for work.

My winner? Facebook. If you join only one that’s gotta be the one — you’ll get value out of that even if you don’t have any friends (and, if you read me, you’ll always have me as a friend). Then try out the others and see which one you like and/or if you get any value out of it.

UPDATE: Jim Long has a good post on this topic where he posits that social networks are the new TV.

UPDATE 2: Steve Rubel says we’re like a million monkeys. Is more interested in what people do with technology rather than the latest “shiny object.” Funny, that post is the culmination of a bunch of Twitter posts back and forth. Turns out that Facebook’s email really pisses Steve off. So, what am I going to do? Send him one, of course! 😉

UPDATE 3: Shaine Mata kept notes on this afternoon’s Twitter session between Rubel and me and others.

Secret SEO tricks behind TechCrunch

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Neil Patel’s company, ACS Consulting claims he doubled TechCrunch’s traffic through search engine optimization. Jennifer Jones interviewed Neil for her Marketing Voices show.

Tour Google with SJ Mercury News

Interesting video with San Jose Mercury News’ Dean Takahashi who gets a tour with Susan Wojcicki, of Google.

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Post to Pownce, Twitter, Jaiku, Tumblr at same time

I’ve been watching my friends and they have just been copying and pasting their messages between their various accounts. I don’t like that trend, cause it just means more noise. I must admit I’ve done it a few times when I wanted everyone to know about something.

At some point I’d like to go through my membership on all the above and see how many people are members of all of these (and add in Facebook for good measure). Based on a very cursory look there’s a LOT of overlap.

Anyway, Stan Schroeder shows how to post to all the above automatically.

I guess this is bound to happen because there’s so many of these new tools popping up.

What would really be great is if all of these had an API so we could use the tools themselves to decide where to send messages to.

Why I love Gnomedex…

Chris Pirillo is a great friend. So, take this post with a grain of salt.

But, here’s why I love Gnomedex:

1) Every attendee uses a laptop computer during the event. It still is one of the few events where I’ve seen that happen.
2) No press passes.
3) I haven’t been asked to speak since 2001. Heh. Not quite true, cause I was on a Gillmor Gang panel last year, but I don’t count that as speaking.
4) It’s geeky, but not developer geeky. User geeky.
5) It’s not over your head or over your pay grade like TED or PopTech.
6) It’s in Seattle in one of their two sunny months.
7) Ponzi. Ponzi. Ponzi.

I’m not speaking. But I’m going to do something fun in the lobby. Facebook fun. Pownce fun. Twitter fun. Jaiku fun. More to come.

UPDATE: maybe I’ll be wearing my iPhone Name Tag. 🙂

Did Digg link here?

I’m getting tons of abuse for comments I made about Jakob Nielsen. Now, usually I’d wonder if I really did something more lame than I usually do. But the comments are almost all from anonymous people who’ve never posted here before and the contain flames of the quality that usually come from Digg.

So, what’s up?

Well, Digg did link today. But that’s to the Google Reader thing and the comments are fairly erudite. For Digg’ers.

Coding Horror’s Jeff Atwood linked to me and told me off, but his readers are usually the kind that don’t get in the gutter with personal attacks.

So, not sure what’s up, but that post sure brought out the 14-year-old anonymous trolls in droves.

Anyway, because Jeff Atwood told me off, that tells me I went over the top with that post.

I’m sorry. Can someone pull off the 14-year-old attack dogs?

Maybe that’s what Jakob meant: write long, meaty posts, if you don’t want the trolls to come and visit you.

Oh, back to the Google Reader Shared Items Facebook application. It just got another major update. Now shows tags, and shows who linked to each post. It’s “Digg for the smart people.” About time.

UPDATE: that Digg link was worth about 21,000 views today. Interesting that Digg’s audience hasn’t grown much in the past year.