Mike's iPhone

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I was over meeting with the CEO of Atlassian, Mike Cannon-Brookes, today about something else (they have some cool news coming soon) but when I got there Mike was showing off his new iPhone and it had a bunch of icons that aren’t on the “Steve Jobs approved” version. So, I had to start up my Nokia to show you what he’s using. Here’s a good description of how to load apps on your iPhone.Isn’t that ironic? I have to carry two cell phones: one to surf the Web on (the iPhone is a lot better at that than the Nokia), among other things, and one to do video. Hmmm.

Anyway, if you look at the other shows on my channel today you’ll see these videos, all done from my cell phone:

1. My favorite beach.
2. A brief tour of Atlassian’s tech support department where you meet the top architect too.
3. The guy behind Wikipatterns.com.
4. A brief video of BluePulse’s CEO, Ben Keighran, who is getting ready to announce some killer mobile phone stuff at CTIA next week). Interesting fact is that their office is in the original YouTube office.

Oh, and coming soon on ScobleShow.com is the full robotic helicopter video.

How many people use RSS anyway?

One of the slams I saw yesterday after we started posting Google Reader’s feed numbers is that “nobody reads RSS.”

Today, Erick Schonfeld at TechCrunch, gave us some more numbers so we can extrapolate out just how many people actually are using RSS.

First, let’s start with the BBC. That’s the #1 most subscribed to feed on Google Reader that I can find.

Google Reader is reporting that 1,387,559 are subscribed to the News Front Page and another 824784 are subscribed to the UK Edition.

Let’s just call that two million people. Yeah, I know that many people are probably subscribed to both feeds, but let’s just go with it to make the math simple.

Now let’s make an assumption. Let’s say that half of all Google Readers are subscribed to the BBC. That means about four million people are using Google Reader.

Using the data from TechCrunch we see that Google counts for about 38% of all people using a feed reader. Let’s just round that to 40%. That means about 10 million people use RSS. Or probably less if my assumptions above prove to be too liberal.

So, why so small? And why does the world care about the behaviors of only 10 million people (out of six billion).

A few reasons.

First, getting 10 million users isn’t too shabby.

Second, I never expected RSS to get as popular as Paris Hilton.

Third, what’s the real power of RSS? The news influencers use it. So, if you want to reach the Paris Hilton crowd you’ve probably gotta go through someone who uses an RSS aggregator. Most of the journalists and almost all of the bloggers I know use RSS.

But, anyway, is 10 million a good or bad number? Why?

UPDATE: Alex Barrera says he asked FeedBurner reported to him that they have 65.6 million subscribers.

Higher quality information

It’s 8 a.m.

I started reading feeds at 6:45 a.m.

So far this morning I’ve dug through 1,174 posts, including about 300 press releases on PR Newswire, across 891 feeds.

I’ve shared 27 of those items on my link blog.

I’ve been challenged to think different by Tim O’Reilly.
I found two new kickass videos by the Digital Ethnography crew at Kansas State.
Got 20 search engine marketing tools.
And a whole lot more.

But, back to Tim O’Reilly. He writes about how the top bloggers get more audience while everyone else goes lacking. He explains that he looks for ideas in different places than just the obvious places. That’s a great explanation of why I read so many feeds. I find so much high quality stuff in my feeds that never makes it to TechMeme or gets linked to by any other blogger.

But, back to the videos. Here’s a vision of students today from Kansas State. This class just is so cool but the kids make me so sad — it costs about $80 an hour to sit in class in a modern University. It’s amazing that kids spend so much resources just to goof off. I shouldn’t talk, though. Reading feeds isn’t exactly what I’m getting paid to do. 🙂

One PR teacher I met recently told me how she’s frustrated by her students because they’d rather read up on Paris Hilton or Lindsay Lohan than apply themselves and study about something that would actually change the world. But, that does lead to certain marketing opportunities. Here the NYTimes has an article about a new celebrity TV show that’s getting big ratings.

On the other hand, what a joy a great teacher is and this Kansas class certainly has a good one.

Thanks everyone for the higher quality information.

Google Reader numbers changed overnight

This morning this comment was left in my last post:

We’ve now posted on the Reader blog with more details about this:


The post mentions that the counts were slightly off until this morning, so keep that in mind when looking at lists that may be using older numbers.

Mihai Parparita
Google Reader Engineer

He isn’t kidding. The numbers changed pretty dramatically. I don’t have time to do a new list today, but yesterday’s list isn’t very accurate anymore.