Archive for July, 2011

Evil Email from civin.org

TechCrunch‘s MG Siegler has been very open about his distaste/hatred of email in the past few weeks. Now he’s pulling out entirely as he announced on Twitter and in an article, “I’m Quitting Email” last night. He’s only signing off for the rest of July. But if we encourage him maybe he’ll be challenging Luis Suarez’s three years Living in a World Without Email (#lwwe) and counting.

In the meantime, IT World‘s Dan Tynan decided to answer every email in his inbox for a week and ended up in Seven Days In Email Hell!

I find Dan the more daring of the two. Yikes! I’d be replying to 150+ emails a day plus an equal amount of spam if I tried that — even after getting off of a bunch of mailing lists (thanks RSS) and the folks who read and followed the suggestions in my away message.

Google+ and writing about #noemail have probably taken up a lot of the time that I’ve reclaimed by doing #noemail — I say that as a joke but with some truth. I still need Freedom to get things done, but not as often.

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For several years, I’ve been claiming that the creation of vernacular videos for conversation and small audience sharing would become an important part of our lives. The playful use of video on YouTube and in increasing integration of video options into chat or personal communications exchanges are just two signs of this wave and change.

This week, we’ve seen the most ambitious bets placed on video communications in quite a while. First, Google Plus’ HangOut and today Facebook+Skype’s Video Calling. The two services are decidedly not equal. HangOut is more full featured while Facebook Video Chat has dropped many of the nice to have Skype features.

Feature Google + Skype (native) Facebook+Skype
Max. number of participants up to 10 pay for up to 10 one on one only
Sharing other feeds YouTube videos Screens, Documents etc nothing
Phone sharing Android devices now; iPhone app in process most smartphones not that I can see
IMishness while on video Gtalk yes in client Facebook Chat
Offer to connect* Active + Passive Active (call) + Passive (Skype Me) Active (message)
Architecture Hub and Spoke Point to point or Originator as hub Unclear at present
platforms Windows XP+, Mac OS X 10.5+, or Linux same 3 Ubuntu folks are complaining

*By “Passive”, I mean that you can declare a HangOut to any Circle of friends who can join in as they choose by clicking a button on their activity stream. By “Active”, I mean you call, message, or send an alert to someone in particular asking them to join you. I didn’t imagine that One On One would often be “Passive” but then I realized that “Skype Me” as a status might be considered a “Passive” invite.

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Leo Laporte of This Week in Tech hosts a This Week in Google on G+ with Google VP Bradley Horowitz, Vic Gundotra, Matt Cutts and other Googlers explaining the inside of the Google Plus development and decisions.

A great show that needs no comments (from me). But I can’t hold back saying that there are some very insightful remarks on video conferencing from Vic Gundotra and Bradley Horowitz. And they reveal that Sparks is just a placeholder from which other services will be added.

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