Author Archives: lorenzo grandi

Welcome to Google Now!

Google Now a new feature in Jelly Bean designed to make it easier to search for certain kinds of information. But thanks to XDA-Developers, you can try out Google Now!

Here is how it is described:

Google Now gets you just the right information at just the right time. It tells you today’s weather before you start your day, how much traffic to expect before you leave for work, when the next train will arrive as you’re standing on the platform, or your favorite team’s score while they’re playing. And the best part? All of this happens automatically. Cards appear throughout the day at the moment you need them. Appointments, commute time to work and back, flight data, sports, and a frighteningly accurate voice search functionality are just some of the “cards” you can scroll through inside of Google Now to find just what you need.

The XDA forum thread has full instructions, but be careful: you’ll have to root your Android device, modify system files, and reboot your phone a couple of times, so it’s at least annoying. Browse the forum thread before you make any changes, and be aware that in some cases it has caused apps to force-close randomly.

But finally, what are Google Now and Siri aiming at?


A Twitter with no replies

Don’t you think it’s annoying to read all the reply tweets on a Twitter profile? Yes, I do too. And guys at Twitter as well. When you visit a Twitter user’s profile, you may want to read original content rather than conversations.

Since June 2012, when you visit some verified profiles, you’ll see their tweets without replies. That is, you won’t see tweets that begin with a @username. But you can always switch to all tweets.

By the way, tweets beginning with a @username are only seen by people who follow both the tweet author and the @username at the beginning of the tweet. Let’s hope we’ll see this features on every profile then!


Be Social like the Vice industries #PWES3

What can we learn about Social Media from alcohol, drugs and porn industries? Like, a lot. Here is a little consideration by Alekone at the #PWES3 Social Media event.

First of all, players in these markets can’t use the regular advertising on Google or Facebook, but they still have a lot of money to spend. So what do they do? Innovation.

In the Eighties VHS beat Betamax because the porn industry chose the former and not the latter. Some recent innovations by these industries are: video live streaming, mobile payments, on-demand video, live video chat, long tail marketing. Chris Anderson‘s Long Tail theory fits perfectly the porn industry: for instance, where else would you find Japanese girls licking door knobs?

More interesting things:

  • Great numbers on these sites – Youporn makes 2% of Internet traffic by itself, Xvideos is the third most visited site in the world.
  • Marketing strategies of drugs sites – Follow them on Twitter and get a free joint

Finally we have:

fewer marketing tools = more innovation.

More community engagement, more tailored contents, more micro-targeting.

Here is the complete presentation. All the presentations from #PWES3 are here. Let’s communicate like the vice industries do!


Our dark side on Social Media

A few days ago I found this picture shared by an Italian musician on Facebook.

It’s a newspaper article about the systematic killing of stray dogs in Ukraine. Because of the European soccer championship, the journalist says, the Ukrainian government ordered the massacre of 30.000 stray dogs. The origin is the work of the photographer Andrea Cisternino.

What I find extremely interesting is not the fact itself. Take a look at some reactions on Facebook.

What am I supposed to think? That animal lovers are racist?

I think that we do not consider that what we write online is public for anyone to read. I think that what we may say in a moment of rage shouldn’t be something your aunt and your employer can read two years from now. I also think that we have the pointless tendency to blame the easiest target available. I hope these people don’t really believe in what they wrote.

Besides, I wonder whether this kind of stuff is related to the Social Media platforms or not. Is Facebook made to show the dark side of people? 

Who uploaded the picture said that Facebook is a great way to make information. I see people distorting this information in any way they like. Is there something wrong in this process? The whole conversation is online here.


New Twitter pages for events

Twitter launched its first TV commercial about a new hashtag-related page. Here it is.

In Mashable’s words: “Twitter explained in an email that the hashtag event page, launched for Sunday’s 2012 Pocono 400 NASCAR race, was aimed at detailing the race experience and not the NASCAR brand“.

By the way, Nascar had no editorial control over what was displayed on the #NASCAR hashtag page. This may confirm that these pages are not for brands.

The hashtag page collected content from fans, but also drivers, their families, commentators, pit crews, celebs and media. Twitter said they plan to continue using the page for future races. I guess more examples of these pages will show up as long as this first experiment proved to be successful.


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