links for 2010-06-11

  • Safari Reader: the Readability crew speaks up in their own defense. Danny Sullivan of searchengineland has a problem with this approach.
  • Interesting approach to "day in the life" coverage of a place
  • "Yesterday, two stories from Aol’s DailyFinance appeared in the Sunday print edition of the Daily Telegram, a newspaper in southern Michigan. These stories appeared on a business page that would otherwise have been produced almost entirely with stories from the Associated Press. The Daily Telegram got permission to publish these Aol stories not through a big corporate content deal, but directly through a peer-to-peer relationship — The Daily Telegram simply subscribed to DailyFinance’s newswire in Publish2’s News Exchange.

    "Now I’m going to tell you why what you see on this page of the Daily Telegram could play a decisive role in the race between Aol, Demand Media, and Yahoo to win the prize of big brand advertising on the web, and why it is also pivotal to the future of news."

  • "If your users are using a third-party product to make your product usable, you are doing something wrong.

    Activating Safari Reader has a cognitive cost. If your users are activating Safari Reader on your site, this means that the default user experience of your site is so bad that your users first consciously notice that they have trouble reading an article on your site, then remember that they might be able to fix it using Safari Reader, and then actually activate that feature.

    The one thing you can immediately influence is whether your users are able to easily read your articles. If they are not, then perhaps Safari Reader is not the problem, but merely a symptom of your actual problem.

    "If people don’t feel the need to use Safari Reader anymore, everybody wins. Don’t fight Safari Reader. Instead, make it obsolete."

  • "This isn’t good news for link shorteners like bit.ly, but it isn’t necessarily their death knell either. Goldman says that bit.ly’s value-added services, like analytics and custom shortened domains, will still work properly with t.co, and users can obviously still use bit.ly for more general link shortening purposes. Thing is, most people sharing links through services like bit.ly are doing it because it’s what their Twitter clients do by default — they don’t need analytics or custom domains. For these users there’s now no obvious reason to use these services, because Twitter will be handling the shortened links itself."
  • "But the bad news is that – in this iteration at least – the iPad is a conflicted machine. It's a media consumption device, and if it's just that it's an expensive one. Not that Steve Jobs is likely to go broke by selling expensive toys, as the sales figures remind us. But alongside this it has a capability as a productivity tool, and it's here that the problems start to tumble out. That doesn't mean it doesn't have a value there, but it does mean that it has considerable potential to become an infuriating device to use.

    "So let's look at the infuriation: exchanging files, the iTunes tether, and the iPad's status as a big iPhone that can't make phone calls. These are all related. Apple won't let you anywhere near the iPad file system, and each app on the iPad has its own storage space. So if you've been using a file with one app, there's no way you can use it with another app without exporting it and then importing it into the other app. And how do you import and export?"

  • "As promised, Google.com, the big page, the heart of the whole operation, looks different today. The company announced this a while ago. Instead of a plain white background, there is a fancy art photography background and you can also customize it with pictures of your own. Personally I hate this. I’m going to look for a photograph of plain whiteness so it can go back to how it used to look."
  • REALLY mobile media: Internet in your car
    (tags: CNNblog mobile)
  • "Whether on a lunch break, riding the train, or simply kicking back on the couch with a post-work beer, why not read something awesome. CellStories brings a new story, every day to your phone or iPad. Free and surprising, we strives to bring you writing that's unexpected. Like all good stories, some are true, some are not, and many fall in that wonderful grey area between.

    "Have a phone that can read QR Codes? Just zap this one, and start reading!"

  • "Just as the US has the world’s most advanced economy, military, and technology, we also have its most advanced oligarchy."
  • Must-listen audio podcast by the author of "13 Bankers"

    "We invaded Iraq because our political leaders wanted to invade Iraq, and our Congress voted for it because they did not want to be seen as voting against a war in the run-up to an election, and that’s all there is to it.

    And with the financial crisis: I’m not saying that bankers wanted the financial crisis, but they engineered it. They engineered a climate of deregulation and non-regulation that allowed them to invent whatever products they wanted to, sell them to anyone they wanted to, increase their leverage so that they could make larger and larger profits, and they engineered that consciously. This was the product of intention, and it was bound to blow up. And it finally blew up. And that is the message that Wall Street does not want people to hear. They want people to think it was all a colossal mistake made by well-meaning people who had mistakes in their models. That is not what happened."

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