Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Shameless Plug: Checkout NewsQB.com

Visit http://www.newsqb.com if you get a moment.

This is a new football news and fan networking site that some of us here at Rokland are involved in. We have been working on some software initiatives and this is one of them. It is powered by Pligg, and is a fun site for any football fan.

The site is currently in open beta. As you know we love sites like Digg, and I know there are some out there that think the voting system used in Digg should not be duplicated on other sites ("COPYCATS!!!"), but I disagree. I think the "Digg" style of content rated by users is a step forward in content management and distribution, similar to the way blogs took online journals to a new level. I read a lot of sports news sites and found that even though they were very informative, I missed a lot of stuff from a lot of good publications around the country and the world.

The idea behind NewsQB.com is to bring content diversification (sorry for the buzzword but it fit perfectly, lol) to football fans and also let them choose what should be displayed at the top of category pages and on the home page by way of voting for their favorite articles.

There is a section for NFL, college division I, division II, high school, and also a separate section for video which is my favorite. But what I like most about the site thus far is how we have incorporated the aspects of a cooperative blog into it. This means that you aren't limited to submitting content from other web sites. You can also write your own articles or editorials and post them where others can vote on them. The discussion area that each submission has, along with the ability to add friends and view their submissions via RSS feed gives the site more of a community aspect than a typical sports news web site.

Check it out and let us know what you think.

Review of Yahoo Mash Beta

I had a chance to check out Yahoo Mash beta (if you want your own beta account, check our previous post for instructions on how to receive an invite) and it is a pretty cool service. It is extremely easy to setup, I really see the interface as possibly leading the way of future web design. That may be a bit much of course, but I do like how easy it is to update your page (and your friends' pages if they allow for friends to make updates on them).

That said, I am not sure how well this project from Yahoo will do. I am not a hardcore social networking site user and really have not gotten into all the MySpace, Facebook, etc. hoopla. Not because I don't think they aren't cool or aren't worth the time, but I myself just have not really had the time to spend updating my profiles and staying "social". So I may not be the best judge of the service. I did notice that many of the folks who requested beta invitations from us have really gotten into the service, adding pictures and graphics, articles from their blogs, and more. So people do seem to want to use Mash. I will most likely be observing from the sidelines as I don't plan to get into it too heavily. Will be interesting to watch though.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Want a Yahoo Mash Beta Invitation?

Update 3:15 PM 9/17: You need to have a Yahoo account in order to claim the beta invitation we will send you. If you don't have one you will need to create one at Yahoo.

Our Yahoo Mash beta account gives us the ability to invite other people to the service. I saw some other folks on Digg offering free invitations to the service so thought I would share the wealth. If you would like one, we just need your name and email address. You can post in the comments section, but if you post your email make sure to use userATserviceDOTcom to avoid those web spam crawlers. Also, if you post your email I should note our comments section will be visible by others. If you don't want to post it, just send us an email to salesATroklandDOTcom (note rokland is spelled without a C) and make your subject line Yahoo Mash Request and put your first name in the message body and we will send you an invitation. We don't mind doing this for people until we get tired of doing it, or unless Yahoo tells beta users to stop open invitations.

Update on Yahoo Mash Beta

Just managed to secure an invitation to Yahoo Mash Beta...at first glance nothing blows me away but I haven't tried to use any of the features yet. Will try to get around to it and maybe write about it here tomorrow.

Yahoo's Launches Mash, Where's the Hype?

Update 3:07PM 9/17: Found out why invitations aren't on eBay and probably won't be- unlike Google which restricted invitations to just a few per beta user, apparently Yahoo Mash beta users can send out unlimited invitations...

Yahoo has announced a beta launch of their new social networking service to compete with Facebook, MySpace, Pownce, etc. (oh goody, another one!). I can understand why Yahoo wants to get into the social networking game, and to those who say the world doesn't need another site like this (myself included), you might be right but don't forget how late Google got into the email game with their Gmail service. When they did, many were singing the same tune about not needing a new email service. Yet Google has done very well with Gmail. So I get why Yahoo wants to enter the social networking game, especially considering they already have millions of registered Yahoo users they can provide with a free account.

What is interesting about Yahoo's service though is that just like with Gmail, the beta is invitation only, meaning you have to know somebody to get an account. But Google launched their beta with much anticipation and buzz from users who coveted an account, so much so that accounts were being sold for over $100.00 each on eBay. The Yahoo Mash beta has only been open a very short period of time, but as of today no accounts are being auctioned off on eBay at all. Simply put, the hype for Mash is nowhere near what is was for Google's Gmail launch.

We'll see where Mash is in a few months before we judge it though (we haven't yet secured a beta account, but if we do we will discuss it some more here).

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Comments on Wired.com Interview With SCO Group CEO Darl McBride

This comes from Wired.com via a Digg post from user moojj:


The SCO Group case is one I have written about before, and it is interesting (amusing in some cases) to read responses from SCO's CEO Darl McBride regarding questions to which many people have long wanted answers.

McBride defends himself as a fighter for what is right, someone attempting to defend his company's property despite the unpopularity he knew it would garner.

While I have followed the case somewhat closely, I have not followed it in enough detail to give specific legal arguments about whether SCO's case had any legal merits. Noting that most of my friends in the Linux community don't believe it did, I will say (and have said before) that regardless of the legal issues at hand, the measures SCO took were simply losing ones. SCO was attempting to do what any business does, and that is make money. But they went about it the wrong way. Even had the most recent court decision gone the other way, and SCO ultimately prevailed on legal grounds, it would have been a short term victory. They would have made some money off licenses, but the Linux community would have found a way to develop future versions of the software which required no payments to SCO. When licensing fees ultimately dropped to zero and SCO attempted to shift to other projects for revenue, they would have had the displeasure of carrying a tarnished brand and reputation with them- one of a company that bullies its potential customer base rather than allying and cooperating with it.

Put simply, in the long run SCO could never have succeeded. McBride's attempts were shortsighted, and to add insult to injury, SCO won't even be profitable in the short term- the day after the most recent court decision, their stock lost 75% of its value.