Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Ebay Desktop

I found this on Download Squad.

Ebay just released Ebay desktop, a sweet program that lets you manage do everything you can on the Ebay site from your desktop. It also includes feeds and notifications when you are outbid, among other things. This is definately going to make Ebay easier. You can get it here for Windows or Mac.

Monday, February 25, 2008

EA-Land.... The Sims Online: Let's try this again

I found this on Kotaku today.

To summary, EA is bringing The Sims Online back, making it free, and calling it EA-Land. They are also adding connections with Facebook and enabling user-generated content, among many other improvements.

Here is the EA-Land official site.

With the addition of user-generated content and the ability to buy simioleans (currency) with real dollars, it seems to me that EA wants to create a competitor to the popular Second Life. I'm just confused as to why they decided to use the architecture from The Sims Online but not leverage the "Sims" brand in the name.

Who is behind Facebook?

This piece about who put the money behind Facebook raises a number of interesting questions.

The CIA, through In-Q-Tel, has a large investment in Facebook. Does this mean that the CIA is actively using Facebook to spy on US citizens? Why else would they be interested in such a tool?

I know some people that don't use Facebook because of questions like these. But seriously folks, what could the government do knowing that your favorite movie is "Grease 2"? Besides laugh, of course. Nothing. Thats why I'm not worried.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Most Anticipated of 2008

After seeing a number of lists about the most anticipated movies and videogames of 2008, I decided to make my my own. Here we go....

My most anticipated video games of 2008:
10. Project Origin (PC, PS3, 360)
9. Resident Evil 5 (PS3, 360)
8. Spore (PC)
7. Battlefield Heroes (PC)
6. Quake Zero (PC)
5. Mario Kart (Wii)
4. Street Fighter 4 (TBA)
3. Left 4 Dead (PC, 360)
2. Starcraft II (PC)
1. Fallout 3 (PC, 360, PS3)

My most anticipated films of 2008:
10. Zack and Miri Make a Porno
9. BrĂ¼no
8. Forgetting Sarah Marshall
7. Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist
6. Wanted
5. The Incredible Hulk
4. Hellboy 2: The Golden Army
3. Quantum of Solace
2. Iron Man
1. The Dark Knight

Let me know what you think!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Second Life

I plan on starting my Second Life adventure soon and I really don't know what to expect. Mainly, I have no idea idea whether or not its going to be fun. Most of the online games I have played involve shooting guns and/or slaying monsters. I've never played an online game that did not have a clearly defined objective.

Is Second Life even a game? It certainly looks like one. You control a 3D avatar in a virtual enviroment, similar to many games I've played. Or is Second Life just an extremely embellished social tool? Maybe its both.

A big issue I have with Second Life is that spending real money to buy fake money. I've never really liked the idea of buying virtual dollars, it seems like a waste to me.

We'll see how it pans out once I enter the world. I already created my avatar (Roland Schuttelanz) and completed the tutorial, but I haven't done anything beyond that.

Friday, February 15, 2008


This is a little off topic, but an amazing computer game was released today. Its called Audiosurf. The best way to describe it would be that its puzzle racing game that makes its tracks from your music. You select a song and a character that determines the style of game you want to play, and the game creates a track for you to play along with the song. You have to try it. You can grab the demo on Steam right here. If don't you want to use Steam to try the game out, you can download a standalone demo here.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

iReport Update

Just a couple days after I last wrote about I-Report, CNN has relaunched the initiative and rebranded it iReport. This time, none of the content is filtered or approved by CNN. It should be interesting to see how big this gets. Check it out at iReport.com

Monday, February 11, 2008

YouTube and Video Posting

Broadband connections have made video easy to share on the web and YouTube has become a model for an entire generation of websites. It seems that everybody with a domain name is starting up a video site. Myspace has a YouTube clone called MyspaceTV. There's also Dailymotion, another clone of YouTube.

Besides these blatant YouTube clones, a number of web sites are doing something new and creative with video posting. Gamers have long been recording there virtual accomplishments and uploading them to the internet. A new website called WeGame lets gamers record videos of gameplay and then automatically upload it to the website with their software.

Also many traditional web sites have added the ability to upload video and other user generated content. CNN.com has I-Report, where users can submit their own news reports.

I see web video continuing to grow in popularity and, hopefully, there will be more unique websites than YouTube clones.

Monday, February 4, 2008


If you live on a college campus or in a trendy part of town, chances are that you've seen a Threadless t-shirt. Threadless.com is website where anyone can design a t-shirt and submit it on the website. After submitting a design, it gets voted on by the site's community. If the submission does well, anyone can purchase it on the website.

Threadless is a breath of fresh air when it comes to t-shirt sites. Rather than the lame movie references and stupid jokes that fill most other sites designs, you can really find something unique on Threadless. What makes the site genius is that the submission and voting process allows the consumer to be involved in the entire design process.

I think that this kind of business-consumer, collaborative, marketing is the future. This Business Week article describes how Nike is letting its customers design shoes in-store and then purchase them. I expect more and more companies to roll out similar initiatives.

BTW, I'm crossing my fingers that this design goes into production soon.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Microsoft bids $44.6 Billion for Yahoo!

Read the WSJ.com article here.

According to that article, one of the main reasons Microsoft wants to acquire Yahoo! is help them complete with Google in the online ad market. Besides that, I really don't see ANY reason for Microsoft to do this. Theres little synergy between the online services that Microsoft and Yahoo provide. They both have IM, mail, maps, a web portal, search, an online music store, and many other overlapping services. It appears that Microsoft wants to strengthen their "Live" online services, a brand that doesn't come close to living up to its origonator, Xbox Live. Another thing to consider is that "Yahoo!" is a much stronger brand than "Live."

So here's what I see happening if this goes through: They combine their ad services. Everything else stays seperate. Would Microsoft waste the "Yahoo!" brand. No. Would Microsoft throw away everything they have done with "Live"? I doubt it.

Even it does work out, they still won't be able to dethrone Google.