Software Articles

Experiment with GOOG-411

Google recently released their new Voice Local Search in beta, also known as “GOOG-411″, and I thought I’d kick the tires a bit. They also mentioned it on their new Google Lat Long Blog.

Microsoft, Clinton Make Green Software, Services

Google’s well known for its environmentally friendly leanings, and Yahoo launched a “Be a Better Planet” campaign just last week.  Now Microsoft has joined the usual suspects by launching its own endeavor; oddly enough, former president Bill Clinton was also involved.

Software Piracy Rate At 35 Percent?

A study by the Business Software Alliance is estimating global software piracy at 35% of all software installed last year, coming out to $40 billion in lost revenue for software makers, with 15% more losses since 2005, $5 billion not going to the people who created the software.

Open Source: It’s The Service, Silly

While the stock market has minted a few tech people as billionaires, including the richest geek on the planet, the most successful in the open source movement probably won’t touch the same level of wealth.

Extradited Software Pirate Pleads Guilty

The leader of one of the oldest and most well known Internet software piracy groups, Hew Raymond Griffiths has pleaded guilty to criminal copyright infringement charges, in one of the first extraditions for an intellectual property offense.

Griffiths, a British national living in Bateau Bay, Australia was extradited in February 2007 to face charges in U.S. District Court.

Demo of Google’s Powerpoint-like Tool
Tonic Systems has a demo of their TonicPoint presentations software, the software Google has just purchased to become its presentations software. Enjoy!

Google Drinks Tonic, Readies Presentations

Google added another piece to their Frankenstein-ish productivity suite by acquiring Tonic Systems for its technology, which will allow Google to add a PowerPoint competitor to its Docs & Spreadsheets product.

Running Up to Web 2.0 Expo with Coghead

Had a great conversation on Friday with CEO Paul McNamara and Sarah Franklin from Coghead as a run-up to Web 2.0 Expo this week. (Disclosure: Coghead is a customer.) Some key bits they shared:

Wall On the Web in 5 Years

In 5 years the web will not look like it does now. 5 years ago cheesy thin topical directories were linkworthy and serious webmasters voted for them. If your competitors are outranking you based on

  • having a more well known brand
  • earlier market entry

don’t think that you are going to catch them and beat them and STAY RELEVANT by only replicating their links and doing what they are doing. 

EBay Pirate Locked Down By DOJ

An Indiana man was sentenced to over two years in prison for selling over $700,000 worth of counterfeit software on eBay, the US Department of Justice announced.

Courtney Smith, 36, of Anderson, Ind., was sentenced in US District Court to 27 months in prison, a two-year supervised release, and will face fines and restitution in excess of $7,000. That’s a pretty stiff penalty considering he only made $4,000 from the sale of pirated Rockwell Automation software.

How Not To Give Your Software Away For Free

If you are a startup entrepreneur, at some point, you will need to make a decision regarding your business model.  Many software startups have a strategy to build early market traction by giving away their offering for free with some plan to monetize at a later date.  I’m not going to make a strong argument against this.  So, for purposes of this article, lets assume for a moment that as a software startup, you actually *want* to charge money for your software someday. 

Business Rules & the Rational Process

Periodically I get asked about bringing business rules into the Rational Unified Process or RUP. RUP and the Enterprise Unified Process are designed to apply UML and best practices in a formal way.

WordPress – Extra Text Editing

A client asked me today for more control in their Wordpress control panel. Specifically, when posting they wanted to control the font sizes, colors and do a bit more. As a designer I always freak at that question as I think the code is going to be filled with massive amounts of font tags and out of order strong tags and ohhh the madness. But, then again, maybe I’m overreacting.

ELGG – Social Technology Software

If you want to build out your own DIY social network, then you need to check out ELGG.

ELGG is a new open source social network software package that is available on source forge. We spent the last day and a half installing the software and playing with some of the mods and other goodies that come with the software.

Good parts about this is that it is fairly easy to install, there are some mods we had to make to the SuSe Linux that we were installing it on.

What PPC Agencies Don’t Want You to Know

I just published a new article, called "The 5 Secrets PPC Agencies Don’t Want You to Know". This article is part of  Search Engine Land’s new Strictly Business column, which covers topics related to B2B search marketing.

Another Thing CIOs Should Know About Requirements

I saw this article on CIO magazine  – Five Things CIOs Should Know About Software Requirements. It seems to me that there is one more thing (at least) that they need to know about requirements:

Business rules are NOT requirements

Rumors of Google Phone

The “Google Phone” is a totally unverified but interesting rumor. Someone at a mobile phone forum claims he was exposed to information on a potential Google Phone via a paid-survey website. Garett Rogers has a copy of the screenshot and some of the specs this user saw. Garett quotes from the design specs which were visible on the screenshot:

Affiliate Software to Track Your Ads

Many people think of affiliates as an added sales channel and affiliate ads as offering a branding bonus (how many text link ads affiliate banner ads have you seen?) but there are numerous benefits to running an affiliate program that many people never consider.

Exclusive Partnerships:

You do not have to let people know that you have an affiliate program unless it makes sense to. You can chose what partners to allow when special occasions come up, without risking watering down your brand equity and perceived value by chasing large distribution deals.

How Rowse Can Convince Internet Marketers to Blog

In today’s post, Darren Rowse at Problogger asks:

“If you had the attention of 400 internet marketers for an hour and were given the brief to talk to them about blogging – where would you take the session?”

It’s a great question, and a great opportunity to lay some important points out on the table. And why should you listen to me? Because I am a professional blog consultant who works with Alliance Software, a company whose clients are almost exclusively high-performance internet marketers. (We’re talking “gun” entrepreneurs running highly-leveraged businesses turning over millions per annum off online sales.) I am therefore in both worlds all the time, and never sure whether to call myself a blog guy or an internet marketing guy!

Perhaps Entrepreneurs Can Stay East After All

A little while I ago, I wrote an article on this blog titled

Newspaper Software

The New York Times Reader, a piece of software you can download to read the NYT on your PC, came out in beta last fall and I immediately downloaded it for a few reasons — including the fact that I am a geek, a newspaper journalist and a big NYT fan. And I have to admit that it was (and is) pretty slick. Thanks to Microsoft’s presentation software, it replicates the look of a newspaper, but updates itself when connected to the Web, etc.

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