Friday, June 30, 2006

Ta Da!--Say Hello to the New and Improved RSS Pundit

Sporting a new URL and a new blogging platform it's the new and improved RSS Pundit...

With two very full weeks worth of social media developments for the RSS Pundit, it took a little longer than the weekend, but the move is finally complete and almost ready for prime time.

The wait is over. Welcome to the new and improved RSS Pundit.

To access The new RSS Pundit, please point your browser to

Feeds for The RSS Pundit come in three flavors including:

RSS 2.0

Going forward, send e-mail for The RSS Pundit to

The journey continues...

Friday, June 16, 2006

Loss of a Friend—The RSS Pundit Bids Adieu to

Now that you’re reading, it’s really not as bad as it sounds…

They say that all good things must come to an end, and so it is with deciding to have The RSS Pundit and Blogger part ways.

In a sort of e-Mark Anthony quasi Shakespeare fashion, I would have you know ‘I come to praise Blogger, not to bury it.

It was a great first choice for me, so saying goodbye to Blogger is a little like losing a good friend. It gave me my first blog. It let me snip away at it as I learned. It let me make mistakes, and it almost never complained.

It strained a bit, but it did everything it could for me—and it did all of this for free.

As my feature and resource requirements have changed, it has become all too clear to me the time has come to say so long.

I’ll post the new URL on Monday when I officially unveil The RSS Pundit 2.0 (as it were) for your use and enjoyment. I’m very pleased with how the conversion has worked out, and can say that having is actually as good as wanting (so far).

I look forward to your thoughts, suggestions, and other feedback, so please come along.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Finding Nemo in the Blogosphere--Tools for Social Media Search

So you want to know what bloggers have to say about Taylor Hicks or The Omen? Here are the tools to take you beyond Google without the need for a lengthy swim across the Pacific Ocean of traditional search.

Editor’s note: This is not yet another Google bashing diatribe.

Let’s imagine for a moment you’re a National Spelling Bee fan interested in finding out more about the word ‘ursprache’ than just its definition. Let’s also imagine you’re more interested in seeing what the blogosphere alone has to say about it rather than wading through the almost 336,000 search results that a saunter along the Google shoreline yields.

Instead of general search gear like Google, Yahoo and MSN, there are some really good tools that make my ‘ranked short list’ for viewing what the blog/social media ecosystem has to say.

These include:

Google Blog Search

These vertical search tools for the blogosphere each offer their own advantages in terms of speed, freshness, quality of results, and ability to filter splog. IceRocket is very fast (Google Blog Search takes a close second), has a great interface (try typing to take it for a test drive), and Technorati’s blog profiles and tags are quite helpful.

While vertical search isn’t all that new--the fact is most vertical search tools will not survive the harsh realities of digital natural selection—there are some very cool seashells in the Internet Ocean to make your syndication life easier when it comes to search.

Give them a try; or, perhaps you could just keep swimming, swimming, swimming…

Monday, May 22, 2006

Business / Business Technology Blog Short List

Yet another list… However, it’s a very good list of business-related blogs.

The brother of a great friend and colleague of mine asked for reading recommendations for “business blogs.”

As such, here’s my short-list of business-related blogs that I find to be worth the time it takes to read (listed in alphabetical order):

Blogspotting (BusinessWeek)
Blogwrite for CEOs (Debbie Weil)
Business 2.0
BusinessWeek Online
Dealing with Darwin (Geoffrey Moore, of ‘Crossing the Chasm’ fame)
Fast Company Business News
Innoblog (Clayton Christentensen, of ‘The Innovator’s Dilemma’ fame)
Let the Good Times Roll (Guy Kawasaki, Father of Marketing Evangelism)
Life Beyond Code (Raj Setty)
Micro Persuasion (Steve Rubel, Edelman)
Moreover – Entrepreneur news
Official Google Blog – (John Furrier) Silicon Valley, Technology
Scobleizer (Robert Scoble, Microsoft Geek Blogger)
Seth Godin’s Blog
The Intuitive Live Business Blog (Dave Taylor)
The Long Tail (Chris Anderson, EIC Wired Magazine)
The Tom Peters Weblog

If you subscribe to any of them, please tell them I sent you!

Sunday, May 21, 2006

FeedBlitz--Meet The RSS Pundit

If navigating the blog doesn’t suit you, you can now read The RSS Pundit in HTML right from your e-mail inbox.

I told you I’d get this posted this week! Shame on skepticism...

Through the fine folks at Feedblitz you now have the option to read The RSS Pundit blog posts by e-mail.

Again, the blog is still here, and is still the best way to read and participate. But if you prefer, you can use your inbox instead.

The instructions for subscribing for updates by e-mail are as follows:

1. To subscribe to the blog and receive e-mail updates, look for the section in the upper right on the blog’s home page, and find the text that says:

“Don't Know How to Blog? Now you can receive The RSS Pundit by e-mail instead. Just enter your e-mail address in the box below, and press the 'Subscribe Me!' button, confirm your address, and you're done.”

2. Once you find this text, just enter your e-mail address in the entry box below this text, and click on the Subscribe Me! Button. You will be taken to the FeedBlitz page, and asked to subscribe to The RSS Pundit by checking your e-mail address, and typing some text from an image you are shown below (this is to stop Spammers from clogging up e-mail boxes with junk). The last step is to again click on the “Subscribe Me!” button. The screen will change and tell you that you must complete the registration process by clicking the link in the email just sent to you. You can close your web browser at this time.

3. You’ll soon (within seconds, actually) receive an e-mail message with the subject line:

[FeedBlitz] Confirm your registration to "The RSS Pundit"

You must respond to this message in order to finalize your subscription to The RSS Pundit by clicking on the highlighted, underlined text/link in the e-mail that says (and looks like):

Click this to confirm your registration now.

Your web browser will open again, and you’ll see the message:

“Welcome to FeedBlitz!”

4. Again, close your browser and you’ll start receiving e-mails whenever there is a new post to The RSS Pundit. If you want to comment by e-mail on any of the messages you receive, just choose the forward option in your e-mail, type in your question, and send it to my address ( Let me know if you want to include your name and e-mail address in case people want to contact you or discuss the issues with you via e-mail.

Of course, please feel free to share information about how to receive The RSS Pundit blog posts by e-mail with your friends and colleagues.

Thanks to those of you who are reading and commenting. If you have a syndication question, I would love for you to share it with me (anonymously or not—you choose), and we’ll address it on the blog.

I hope The RSS Pundit continues to be a useful syndication technology resource.

Monday, May 15, 2006

I’m Baack!!!—The Return of The RSS Pundit

Life came at me with a vengeance, but one job change later and it’s Life 2.0 for me. The posts will resume—even if you want them via e-mail...

In what can only be described as an act of social media suicide, I have been on an almost three-month hiatus from this syndication love affair of mine called The RSS Pundit.

There’s a great quote from Alvin Toffler that says: “It is better to err on the side of daring than the side of caution.”

Sound advice I should have taken six months ago, rather than one month ago.

So, with a job change behind me, and feeling energized and challenged all over again, the task before me of creating a syndication strategy at my new gig has me back at the keyboard.

While brewing up my next round of meaningful posts, let me point you to a very interesting site: FeedBlitz.

While chipping away at some civic duties and employing a blog to do so, I discovered the majority of the Republican contingent in Utah (Yes, in the spirit of transparency, I am a Republican—but one who doesn’t agree with the more bellicose Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, nor with the doctrine of pre-emption as instantiated by the likes of the Iraq War—but we’ll keep those discussions off this page, please.) is much more comfortable and adept at communicating through e-mail groups rather than blogs. They say numbers don’t lie, and both of those e-groups consistently receive substantially more participation than the blog.

While there is a clear argument the quality of the blog’s content is the reason for the difference (a fair criticism, but not the explanation, in my humble opinion), I have concluded people know more about e-mail, and are more comfortable using it than a blog as an avenue of expression and dialogue.

I lament this situation. Blogs are simply better suited to the organized and systematic review of material for the masses. Hunting through e-mail folders for a particular item is not an organized, systematic content management and review system for large quantities of information.

That said, all marketing professionals know that educating a market is an expensive and undesirable position in which to find yourself. So, FeedBlitz offers a great bridge that allows readers to receive blog posts by e-mail.

I will add it to The RSS Pundit this week, and let you know what it does to the numbers.

Of course, the blog is still here. It is still the best way to get the word out, and the best way for everyone to participate.

I hope you’ll welcome me back into your readers and inboxes. In return, I’ll continue my endeavor to make the ideas worthwhile and the words easy on the eyeballs.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Apple Syndicate--Are iTunes'-iPod's Best Days Ahead Because of Syndication?

Today iPods and iTunes rule the portable audio and video content world. But does Apple's majority reach into the consumer space hinge on syndication technology? I think so...

I was quoted in an 11 February 2006 article in The Salt Lake Tribune written by Bob Mims about the impact FLASH memory will have on companies manufacturing FLASH, and on the result for consumers. He also cited Dan Francisco of Micron, Celeste Crystal of IDC Research, Nam Hyung Kim of iSuppli, and Don Barnetson of Samsung.

Mims (also a blogger), a reporter noted for doing his research while covering "technology, biotech, fraud, profiles" for 'The Trib' posed two questions to me while writing the article.

Understanding that Mr. Mims has word count and column inch restrictions for his stories, yet knowing myself well enough to realize I never say in a paragraph what can be said in a page, I'm sharing with you my entire response to his questions.

First he asked for my "off the cuff reaction to (1) the possibility of higher-capacity chips giving the ability to store 10s of hours of video and hundreds of hours of audio, and being able to burn and or buy movies on flash chips by the end of the year."

To which I replied:

"If Apple maintains cost parity and adds benefits like better battery life, better reliability, and increased durability, NAND flash makes great sense for the iPod installed base looking to upgrade. Since I’m part of that installed base, this appeals to me to be sure.

"Offering consumers legally pre-installed content may just deliver the “revenue hockey stick” Apple (and it’s shareholders) are looking for. They could easily increase market access by making cool stuff available to users who are uncomfortable with the “hook it to a PC, go on-line and use iTunes” content delivery experience. Once these consumers get a taste of this new way to access content, their aversion and pain threshold for the on-line experience may be decreased. Either way it means more revenue for Apple.

"In short, this may be just the next move to secure Apple's market dominance while growing the size of the addressable market at the same time. It's a great strategy."

Second, he asked "how important is it to [iPod users] to stay on the cutting edge of such technology?"

And I said:

"This is a classic Apple question and challenge. Apple currently dominates the market because the iPod user experience is so buttoned up through Apple’s mastery of integration. As the technology building blocks for MP3 players (like NAND flash, displays, interface) improve and the interfaces for these building blocks standardize, the battle for Apple will shift from the technology in the device to the technology that distributes delivers content to the device. Apple (or should I say Jobs) seems to have anticipated this nicely with their content relationships with the recording industry and now the television industry. Content truly is king in this market.

"This is going to remain a really interesting market, and whatever happens the consumers are going to come out on top. What a rush!"

After giving my responses, I had this additional thought: As syndication is a big part of the iTunes delivery system (particularly when you “subscribe” to a podcast) and the iPod experience, I can't help but think this is where eventually hundreds of millions (rather than today's tens of millions) of users will come from, and they'll come subscribing.

The thought reminded me of one of my very first posts where I talked about the evolution of the web from browse to search to subscribe. I think the web evolution we call syndication is really tied to the long-term value proposition for iTunes and the iPod.

What do you think?

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