Your old Google Buzz data is coming to Google Drive

google buzz logoOut of the blue I received an email from Google Buzz support which, needless to say, was a surprise. In fact, I felt like a time traveler when I saw it land in my inbox — the service began mercifully shutting down back in October 2011. Well, it is not officially dead yet, it seems, but life-support is about to be disconnected.

The email informs former customers that all of their old Buzz data is heading for Google Drive and will be arriving this summer. “On or after July 17th, 2013, Google will take the last step in the shutdown and will save a copy of your Buzz posts to your Google Drive, a service for storing files online”, the  message reads.

It goes on to inform users that two types of files will be stored:

  1. The first type of file will be private, only accessible to you, containing a snapshot of the Google Buzz public and private posts you authored.
  2. The second type of file will contain a copy of only your Google Buzz public posts. By default it will be viewable by anyone with the link, and may appear in search results and on your Google Profile (if you’ve linked to your Buzz posts). Note,any existing links to your Google Buzz content will redirect users to this file.

If you left comments on the posts of other users, then those will only be stored in the files of that customer. Comments that were deleted will not be saved. The files will be treated as all others in your Drive — you can share them, keep them private or simply delete them. For now, you can view the Google Buzz posts you have authored here.

Busy Week at Instagram

Social photo service Instagram just had a big week, although not as big as the week of the billion dollar buyout, but it’s all relative.  This week the mobile app company released a slew of updates, including ones to their Android and iOS apps, as well as to their web site.  There were bug fixes and new features for everyone, and with the power and financial backing of Facebook behind them, they will likely be moving even faster with their updates and upgrades.

Updates to the android app included:

  • Improved search functionality
  • Support for location data taken from Gallery images when geotag is selected
  • Fix for HTC Sensation 4G freezing using tilt shift
  • Improved support and bugfixes for devices using the Instagram advanced camera
  • Addresses tilt shift issues on lower resolution images

iOS users can expect similar improvements.

  • Revamped profile tab
  • Search for users and tags in the Explore tab
  • Improvements to commenting
  • User search autocompletes based on people you follow
  • Visual improvements
  • Speed optimizations
  • Optionally share likes to Facebook (enable in your Profile > Sharing Settings > Facebook)

If you want to access the service from a computer then you got the biggest update of all.  Instagram has finally allows you to follow, comment and like from your web browser.

Instagram, now a property of Facebook, is the number one photo sharing service right now and they continue update and innovate in an effort to stay relevant in today’s ever-changing tech world.   Like other social networks, it’s free to use.

Jolicloud Launches Public Profiles

Cloud storage hub Jolicloud today announced the launch of their new Public Profiles for users.  If you aren’t familiar with Jolicloud, it’s a service that grabs all of your various data from different social services like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, Picasa, and Tumblr and places the data into neat files in one single location that users can then easily scan.  For instance, you’ll find all of the photos you posted on different networks all grouped together in a convenient Photos folder.  The same for music, links, videos, and documents.

The new Public Profiles allows users to more easily share content with friends straight from Jolicloud.  Users can invite and follow friends and give them access to your media stored there.  Jolicloud only shares the data users have made public.  The new update is for both the web and iOS versions, but they hinted that Android would be coming next week, possibly with even more features.  Their official annoucement stated, “We’ve heard a lot of feedback about Jolicloud over the last few weeks, and now we’ve decided to bring some of the most requested features to you with an update to our iPhone and web apps.”  They went on to hint that, “Rumors among robots mention a major event for next week.  But you know, those are only rumors..”

Jolicloud is still officially in beta, but the service is stable and so far seems secure.  It’s also free to use, and there are mobile apps for both iOS and Android.  You can get a view of the main screen below.

The New Bing Not Ready for Primetime

Bing I was sent an email invitation to try the new Bing this morning. My default search engine is Google, but I am willing to try something different if it is better. So I clicked on the Try the new Bing. First in order to get the full Bing experience you have to sign in either by using your Windows Live or your Xbox Rewards account and you also have to connect Facebook. I signed in with my Windows Live account and connected Facebook. Now when I search for something using Bing on the left hand side of the window is a grey tab which shows if any of my friends on Facebook have posted anything on the subject on Facebook. It will only show likes, post and photos that they posted publicly. You can also send a question to your friends on Facebook from the same tab.

To be honest the new Bing is a little disappointing, since it only connects to Facebook directly. If you do a search and your friends don’t use Facebook than none of their suggestions show up. There is a limited connection to Twitter, but not surprising there is no connection to Google Plus If you do a general search for movies, then you get two sections Friends who might Know and People who Know. Under People who Know you see tweets from people like Roger Ebert on the subject. So far the subject movies is the only search that has brought up People Who Know section. I hope that is just a temporary situation, because I am more interested in what Roger Ebert thinks about a specific movie rather than what he thinks of movies in general. This would be true of any subject and expert. Most other searches I tried have been fairly weak on the social connections. Part of the problem I will admit is I don’t have a lot of connections on Facebook, however based on my reading I am not the only one that ran into this problem.

The new Bing does have somethings going for it, first the social interaction is to the side and it doesn’t interfere with normal search. Second you can close or open the search column by hitting the arrow on the top right side. I suspect despite these good points, I will continue using Google as my main search engine.

Peel Recommends TV Shows For You

Peel on iOS and AndroidIn the “old days” finding enjoyable TV programmes relied on three sources – in programme advertising for another show, flicking through the channels or your friends saying, “Did you watch xxxx last night? It’s brilliant!” At CES, Andy and Courtney discover Peel, a fourth way of discovering great new TV shows.

Peel is an iPhone and Android app which offers show recommendations based on your viewing habits and the shows that your friends and family are watching.

The app offers “Top picks” based on what you watch and you can rate shows as favourites or as “guilty pleasures” – I think we all know what that means! The app also gives “Friends’ favourites”, the shows that everyone else is watching, so you can catchup with what’s hot.

It’s not clear whether Peel is US-centric or not, but it’s a free app, so there’s nothing to lose.

Interview by Andy McCaskey and Courtney Wallin of SDR News and RV News Net.

Support our Show Sponsor:
30% off your new order @ GoDaddy: gnc30
1.49 .com New or Renewal geek149
$1.00 / mo WordPress Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: press4
$1.00 / mo Economy Hosting with a free domain! Promo Code: geeks12
GoDaddy Promo Codes always save you money, check out my Promo Codes Today
PlayPlay

Quirky – Social Product Development

I love these entrepreneurial websites such as Kickstarter. It’s a vicarious pleasure in seeing other people’s ideas and helping these people succeed by investing in their products. I found a new one today – Quirky – which I think takes the idea development to the next level. Quirky refer to it as a “A Socially Developed Product (TM)” and they help you take a product from the idea through product development to production and sales.

Here’s Quirky’s product development process.

The Quirky Process (courtesy of Quirky)

What seems to be unique about Quirky (and to be fair, I haven’t exhaustively researched the topic) is that part of the process is to encourage feedback from Quirky members to improve the product. They call it “community curation”. It’s a great idea especially if it leads to better products.

Taking it further, Quirky has this notion of influence. You earn influence by submitting ideas or commenting on products, and influence converts into a proportion of the profit from those objects that you worked on. The explanation is a bit opaque in places and I’d be interested to see what sort of money people make but it seems to be way to reward everyone who helped make the product a success.

There are some really interesting products on the site and the one that currently has my eye is the Converge docking station. It’s probably less docking station and more charging station but it looks great and solves a problem that many of us have.

The Converge is in pre-sale and so far it looks like it has garnered only 69 orders out of the 1300 needed to put it into production, so I don’t know how many products actually make it from pre-sale to production.

Overall, I like the idea and I’ll be following along but with all of these things, exercise caution. If you’ve got a great idea, it might be an excellent place to get a product into the market. But you need to read the small print and understand ownership of the intellectual property and design, your portion of the profit and so on – I haven’t delved into any of these things yet. If you aren’t happy, walk away.

Smyle Social Collaboration App

James Sim and Ilya Braude discuss the debut of a new social collaboration app for Android and the web called Smyle, enabling users to form collaborative groups. Features include chat, location sharing, white boarding and image exchange.

Interview by Todd Cochrane of Geek News Central and Tom Newman of The Fogview Podcast.

Please Support our CES 2011 Sponsors.

Save 25% on 4GH Hosting 1yr Subscriptions Save 25% Promo Code CES2.

Flixwagon Mobile Video Broadcast and Social Networking Platform

Arie Offner and Roy Ginat present Flixwagon (http://www.flixwagon.com/), a mobile video broadcast and social networking platform. The product is aimed at business and corporate users. Verizon will be soon launching the Flixwagon Android application for selected Verizon Android phones.

Interview by Esbjorn Larsen of MrNetCast.com and Jeffrey Powers of Geekazine.Com.

Please Support our CES 2011 Sponsors.

Save 25% on 4GH Hosting 1yr Subscriptions Save 25% Promo Code CES2.

[flowplayer src='http://blip.tv/file/get/Techpodcasts-CES2011LiveFlixwagon361.m4v' width=480 height=270 splash=http://www.geeknewscentral.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/02/flixwagon.png]

A Review of GetGlue

GetGlue is a social sharing service that is available through the web, Iphone, Ipad and Android. It allows you to share not only what your watching or listening too, but also what your reading, thinking about, eating. The first thing you do when you join GetGlue is you have the opportunity to rate various categories including movies, music, actor, artist, books. Based on how you rate things Glue offers you suggestions of things that you might like. Getting suggestion from Getglue is especially useful when you first join and you don’t have many followers. As you get more followers the suggestions get better and more accurate. Also when you rate and review things you can win actual physical badges.

It is fun to see what other people think of the things that you like and also what you didn’t like. Sometimes when you watch or read something and your view of it is different then what the majority of the web seems to think, it makes you feel bad as of you are missing something. With Getglue you find people who think like you and see things the same way you do. I like reading those reviews and seeing what other people think. There are other programs like GetGlue one that I also use is Miso. However with Miso you can only review videos, and there are no way to rate them. Also with Miso you don’t get suggestions based on what you have rated. I will admit I don’t use Miso that much, unlike Getglue I am not really getting anything out of it.

Geek News Central Research Analyst Carissa Caramanis O’Brien looked into how Getglue is doing and found an article from Crunchbase that said that in October Getglue reached the milestone of 10 million checkins in October. It is also starting to offer not only badges but also discounts through its partnership with HBO. If you subscribe to HBO this great, however for those of us who are not HBO subscribers it’s interesting but not useful. Hopefully GetGlue can make more arrangements with other providers such as Itunes or Amazon. I would especially love to see it make an arrangement with Amazon, which would allow everyone to use it no matter how they view or get their media. Do you use Getglue, if you do you can follow me I am listed as klandwehr. If you don’t, I would recommend that you try it. It is free and it is great way to find new things.


My First Look at RockMelt

RockMelt a new browser came out this week to a lot of fan fare from the main stream tech media.Robert Scoble did a good interviews with the creators of the browser which can be found on YouTube. The newest Net@Nite which should be available for download tomorrow (Nov 10, 2010) interviewed the cofounder and they asked some questions about how much personal information the company was caching and their security. Their basic answer was we’re not interested in personal information and they take security serious. Once the episode is available I would recommend watching it. I was lucky to receive a beta-invite yesterday afternoon and have been trying it out since then. There are a couple of things that I really like about Rockmelt, On the right hand side of the browser there is a side bar where you can put your favorite sites and as they update a ticker number goes up. If you click on the icon. A stream comes up showing the latest updates and you can key down through the updates. If you find something you like you simple click on it and the page pops up. If you want to share a site there is an icon at the top to share it on Twitter or Facebook . You can add sites manually or Rockmelt will nudge you if you visit a site a lot to add it. If you search for something and you use the RockMelt search pane a preview of the searches will come up and as you arrow down through them the pages on your browser windows change to the corresponding page. On the left hand side you see your Facebook connections, which you can arrange either by who is online or by your favorite contacts. If the person is online the dot next to their avatar will turn green. If you want to chat with the person you simply click on their avatar and a chat window comes up. If you want to share a link with someone, you can simply drag the link to their avatar and drop it.

There are a couple of negatives about RockMelt, the first is when you open up the browser you have to sign into Facebook. So if you are not into Facebook or Twitter this is definitely not the browser for you. Most extensions available in Chrome will work, however they are still having problems with some extensions like Lastpass and 1password. They are working to fix those problems as they are being reported. The one thing that is a little annoying is when you share something thru the RockMelt sharing app the number indicator on the icon goes up. I don’t really need to know that I just posted something. The browser did crash once today, but came back up right away other then that I haven’t had any technical problem that I am aware of.

So far I do like the browser, the connection to your social site is great and easy to use. I am not sure though how successful this will be in the long run, after all a social browser has been tried before, think Flock. If you already using a browser that you are happy with, is the integrated social media enough to change, I am not sure it is. However if you are into Facebook or Twitter I would recommend trying it. If you are interested in trying RockMelt I do have two invites available.