Early adopter, entrepreneur, leader interested in software, the Internet, mobile telephony and computing, and VoIP. Founder or senior management with The Personal Bee, Orb Networks, CallTrex, Borland (BORL), The Dr. Spock Company, Neta4, WhoWhere?, CMP Media, and IT Solutions.

Today's Buzz:

Friday, December 02, 2005

Evolving Content Model Online

I was intrigued by the comments on Paid Content regarding the current Digital Magazine conference --

Digital Magazine Forum: 'Compete With Google' class="nav">[by Dorian] [by Dorian Benkoil] Michael Loeb, the CEO of Synapse Group, the largest seller of magazine subscriptions in the US and now owned by Time-Warner, recommended in a Q session of his keynote address that the magazine industry come up "with a competitive response" to Google and keep them from "getting the information for free."

PaidContent.org: December 01, 2005 Archives

Dorian goes on to talk of her interaction in the forum with the speaker, in particular when he denigrated Blogs (like PaidContent, which does a great job by the way).

To me the interesting question that magazines should be asking is how consumers actually want to receive their content and how do they stay relevant in an Internet focused consumption model. These are questions that cannot be answered from the perspective of traditional publishing models, as one needs to rethink the relationship between author, editor, publisher, and reader in order to envision a new ecosystem...

Focusing on Google getting "information for free" entirely misses the boat...

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

The new plaze to find the technorati

That is technorati like glitterati, not like the blog search engine... Lately I have been playing with Plazes more and more and having fun seeing who is on line and who is nearby... I just discovered this list of top users:


1. Tantek Technorati add Friend 389/15 **********
2. harmen Steele Hacienda add Friend 159/3 *******
3. falloutboy - add Friend 138/9 *******
4. Joi - add Friend 121/13 *******
5. cyprien - add Friend 119/7 *******

I am not surprised that Tantek and Joi are in the top 5 -- an interesting collection of early adopters... I am going to have to get busy if I want to be in this august company... over 50 combined Plazes discovered and invitations accepted just to make the top 20...

And is that really THE Michael Moore as #20?

No profile online, so its hard to say...

Monday, November 28, 2005

Additional Prius Complaints

Also worth noting that a number of drivers complain that the Prius doesn't perform anything like advertised... Here are some articles at Consumer Affairs...



For the record, our VW Golf diesel performs as advertised - over 40 MPG

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Should you get a Prius?

A friend recently asked me if I thought he should lease a Prius for a few years. I wrote a detailed email back to him and he made the suggestion that I post the answer here on my blog for others to read... so here goes!

It really depends upon your objective -- are you interested in good gas mileage? are you interested in reducing greenhouse gas emissions?

The Prius really isn't the best at any of these. I think the only thing the Prius DOES have going for it is that it is universally associated with the idea of hybrids and thus, by extension, with environment friendliness...

The basic problem with hybrids today is that it is a closed loop -- the gas engine recharges the batteries. So in general terms total energy efficiency is necessarily lower than if you just burned the gas straight away -- that is, there is necessary energy loss in the storage and reuse... So the entire "efficiency" of hybrids comes at one place - the stoplight. Gas vehicles burn away gas at the stoplight without any gain. Hybrids shut off the motor altogether, thus "saving" the energy otherwise lost at stoplights. So if you do a lot of stop and go city driving, a Hybrid could save gas and reduce pollutants... Now, if Hybrid manufacturers allowed you to plug the car into the grid at night you could avoid using gas to recharge the batteries (at least for short trips)... but for marketing reasons they won't do this -- consumers in their view are fearful of having to plug in their cars...

But if you do a lot of freeway driving, you have better options. Check:


First look at Hybrids from Toyota vs. Honda:

Toyota Prius:
City: 60 Hwy: 51 Tons of greenhouse gases/yr: 3.50

Honda Insight (Manual) Hybrid:
City: 60 Hwy: 66 Tons of greenhouse gases/yr: 3.10
*The insight does better in Hwy driving due to its aerodynamic design. You choose a manual transmission over an automatic because it weighs significantly less...

But then compare to the diesel VW Golf:
City: 38 Hwy: 46 Tons of greenhouse gases/yr: 5.2
The reason that Hwy is better than city here, as with most cars, is that the city driving MPG is hurt by all of that stop and go driving.

One thing that the "greenhouse gas" calculation on the US Gov website does not take into consideration is that diesel produces a different mix of gases than burning gasoline -- but leave that aside for the moment and look at the greenhouse gas number though in the context of using biodiesel instead of gas:




While Nitrous Oxide increases by about 10% at 100% biodiesel, the key greenhouse gases - CO and HC are reduced by 50% and 70% respectively - far outweighing the increased fuel efficiency of gas-hybrid cars.

What we really need is a biodiesel-hybrid car that you can plug into the grid... OK what we really need is hydrogen cars with personal refueling stations powered by rooftop solar energy...

In the meantime though, your best bet for gas is a manual transmission Honda Insight. Best bet for reducing greenhouse gases (and dependency on the middle east) is a VW Golf Diesel.

Lest you think that finding biodiesel is hard, here is a guide to finding a refueling station in the bay area:


OK... only three stations right now... but its growing! :-)

Here is a nationwide map:


You might also be interested in this new book, Biodiesel America: How to Achieve Energy Security, Free America from Middle-East Oil Dependence and Make Money Growing Fuel


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"Bulls**t Bingo"

A friend sent the rules this morning -- always handy...

Do you keep falling asleep in meetings and seminars? What about those long and boring conference calls?

Here's a way to change all of that.

  1. Before (or during) your next meeting, seminar, or conference call, prepare yourself by drawing a square. (I find that 5" x 5" is a good size.)
  2. Divide the card into columns - five across and five down. That will give you 25 one-inch blocks.
  3. Write one of the following words/phrases in each block:synergy
    • strategic fit
    • core competences
    • best practice
    • bottom line
    • revisit
    • expeditious
    • to tell you the truth (or "the truth is")
    • 24/7
    • out of the loop
    • benchmark
    • value-added
    • pro-active
    • win-win
    • think outside the box
    • fast track
    • result-driven
    • empower (or empowerment)
    • knowledge base
    • at the end of the day
    • touch base
    • mind-set
    • client focus(ed)
    • paradigm
    • game plan
    • leverage
  4. Check off the appropriate block when you hear one of those words/phrases.
  5. When you get five blocks horizontally, vertically, or diagonally, stand up and shout "BULLSHIT!"

Testimonials from satisfied "Bullshit Bingo" players:

"I had been in the meeting for only five minutes when I won." - Adam, Atlanta

"My attention span at meetings has improved dramatically." - David, Florida

"What a gas! Meetings will never be the same for me after my first win." -Dan, New York City

"The atmosphere was tense in the last process meeting as 14 of us waited for the fifth box." - Ben, Denver

"The speaker was stunned as eight of us screamed 'BULLSHIT!' for the third time in two hours." - Paul, Cleveland

"When I won and yelled "BULLSHIT!" the woman sleeping next to me slid off her chair!" - Joseph, Los Angeles

and of course there are great web resources:


Generate your own Bingo card:


And in German:


Fun, fun fun!

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Sunday, November 27, 2005

Internet Ad Revenue

Analysts have just reported that Internet advertising has hit an all time high of over $3 Billion for the third quarter of 2005. This is the first time that total Internet ad spending has been this high:

Internet advertising hit its last similar milestone -- $2 billion in revenues -- back in the second quarter of 2000, right before the dot-com bubble burst.

Internet Ad Revenues Exceed $3B/Quarter

Total ad revenue for 2005 is now projected to top $12 Billion... well ahead of analysts projections. Remember those bad old days in the depths of the bust, say back in 2003:
For the full year, the Internet advertising industry took in $6.0 billion in revenue in 2002, a 16 percent slide from the year before.

Online Ad Rebound Underway

Now to put this in perspective, US newspaper advertising in the third quarter of 2005 was over $11 Billion and U.S. total advertising spending will be $277.5 billion for the year. Check out the table here:


So it is safe to say that Internet advertising has a lot of room to grow...

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