Genius – Your Pocket Guide to Human Culture

app_iphone_260x By Lauren Gutierrez

http://meta.genius.com/Genius-about-genius-annotated

Located in Brooklyn, New York and in the apps store of everyone’s iPhone, Genius started out as a rap lyrics database with an interactive community that gave meaning and extra breadth to their stanzas and verses. Now Genius has grown to encompass and incorporate that model of interaction to a slew of different music genres, literature, news, history, sports, and many more topics in between.

The fluidity of it’s structure allows contributors to collaborate and identify the most accurate interpretations of the text. Unlike other wiki’s, Genius rewards top contributors by giving them higher IQ points meaning their “Top Scholars” are given more power to edit, moderate, and regulate as they go. Collaborative aspects of the site that are noted right away are the propose an edit, leave a suggestion, improvement or correction options which also award IQ points. This makes the site a bit less susceptible to so-called internet trolls especially with the use of verified artist annotations which are made by authors or subjects of the original source.

Some of it’s Web 2.0 features include member accounts, forum participation, likes/dislikes, shares, and comments. An interesting feature is the ability to follow a contributor because they post the most knowledgeable content or are Top Scholars in a particular field. The account may also be linked to a Twitter or Facebook account to further promote the information on other social media platforms. It has a more contemporary and vibrant feel than other wiki sites which don’t have this kind of fun yet informative flavor to them.

iPhone 6 and 6 Plus

Apple has released two new iPhone models this year on September 19, 20014. Both new iPhones have bigger screens. the iPhone 6 with a 4.7 inch screen, and the iPhone 6 Plus with a 5.5 inch screen. Both sizes are the biggest that Apple has ever released in their phone models. And, of course, there are a lot of new features that come with these new phones.

Both phones have new processors that are faster and more productive. But there are a few differences between the two other than the size of the screens. The iPhone 6 Plus is able to do a few ore things than the regular iPhone 6. Such as, longer battery life, optical image stabilization, and a landscape mode like the iPad on the home screen. Also, the iPhone 6 is only 6.9mm think while the iPhone 6 Plus is 7.1mm thick. Not a huge difference, but a little bit.

One new pice of hardware that has been upgraded in both iPhones is the camera. The sensors were updated to better ones, and a new technology called ‘Focus Pixel’ helps the phone with autofocusing. This is used really well while filming and focusing on things up close then farther away. Now you can make those awesome “professional”  movies you’ve always wanted to make.

The new Retina HD Display is on both phones which really makes the picture on the phone crisp, bright, clear, and colorful. And the screen curves just a little bit on the edges to connect really well with the aluminum back, which is more like the iPad and iPod touch.

http://www.macrumors.com/roundup/iphone-6/

Up to Speed with Hyperlapse

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The camera is one of the most used applications we use on our phones in day to day activities. We are constantly snapping photos to remember something later or to show a friend something that reminded you of them. Needless to say, the camera has become an intimate part of our lives. Geek Wire chooses an application every week and names it “The App of the Week” this week it happened to be the new standalone app, Hyperlapse. This app allows the user to record a video and actually speed it up rather than watching it in real time allowing more video in a shorter time period. This article written by Blair Hanley Frank explains the versatility and ease of this new app but also points out the problems and flaws which make it frustrating for the user to share the actual videos. This app is a prime example of how Web 2.0 is flourishing and expanding literally at our fingertips, constantly.

The article discussed above can be found here: http://www.geekwire.com/2014/app-week-hyperlapse-makes-time-lapse-videos-smooth-butter/

e-Commerce Master Alibaba uses Web 2.0 concept of connection

e-Commerce Master Alibaba uses Web 2.0 concept of connection

by Michael Hawker

Sai Baba (1926-2011), the spiritual master from India, was reputed for magical abilities of healing, and for establishing a network of free hospitals, clinics, and schools for the poor. Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce giant, is becoming master of the online marketplace, having established the largest network of retailers and consumers in China.

In an All Things Considered news segment hosted by Melissa Block on NPR, guests Steve Henn, Hany Nada and Hana Halaburda talked about how Alibaba became so big. You think eBay or Amazon is big? Try Alibaba.

http://www.npr.org/v2/?i=349626271&m=349626275&t=audio

“Alibaba sells more stuff than Amazon and eBay combined,” says Ms. Block.

Alibaba sold $240 billion worth of product last year, a figure that tops Amazon and eBay if combined. Jack Ma, the diminutive former English teacher, started the company from his one bedroom apartment in 1999. The pioneer in internet trade in China is now a billionaire, remains as Alibaba’s chair and has 24,000 employees.

Today is historical for Alibaba—it began selling stock on the New York Stock Exchange. The initial public offering (IPO) almost topped the record of $22 billion through the first few trading hours. In 2008, Visa’s IPO reached $17.8 billion, and in 2012, Facebook’s IPO reached $16 billion. The record remains, however (at least for the moment), with Agricultural Bank of China when it raised $22 billion at its 2010 IPO in Hong Kong and Shanghai.

Mr. Henn likens Alibaba’s success to that of a super popular dating site because Alibaba was built on the tenet of bringing people together, creating connections between consumers and companies.

Ms. Halaburda, who researches large internet platforms, wrote about Alibaba while working at the Harvard business school, according to Henn.

“…it’s eHarmony, it’s eBay, it’s Amazon, [and now] Alibaba,” says Halaburda.

In the 1990’s in China, internet commerce was almost non-existent. Consumers did not know how to find manufacturers and “no one was hooking up” according to Henn. When Ma set up Alibaba, he did so by first attracting companies to join.

“When you start a dating site, you don’t start a dating site on empty,” says Halaburda.

Alibaba started out with a bunch of hottie businesses, making them attractive for consumers to establish a relationship, and now Alibaba is attracting a lot of international attention.

For the NPR story, follow: http://www.npr.org/2014/09/18/349626271/alibaba-found-success-by-acting-like-a-dating-site

For additional Alibaba information, follow: http://www.economist.com/news/briefing/21573980-alibaba-trailblazing-chinese-internet-giant-will-soon-go-public-worlds-greatest-bazaar

To see for yourself, visit www.alibaba.com

Making Friends With MyFitnessPal

By KellieAnn Halvorsen

Article: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2465763,00.asp

MyFitnessPal has become the go to app and website for individuals tracking their health and diet. It incorporates many web 2.0 elements in both it’s smartphone app and it’s web version including a critical social aspect that can help an individual stay on the path of good health through positive peer pressure.In PCmag.com’s article “What Can Fitness Apps Do For You? An Interview With Albert Lee,” Jill Duffy interviews the co-founder of the site in an effort to discover why the app has become so popular and how it is different from other fitness apps on the market.

The article begins with a basic overview of the growing digital health tracking industry, what MyFitnessPal is in that niche, the companies history, and who Albert Lee is in the company. The article is done in interview form with Duffy asking the questions and Lee providing the answers with little to no embellishments. They discuss where MyFitnessPal has gotten things right such as its massive amount of stored data (over 4 million foods calories and nutritional information has been stored in their system), the fact that their service has been integrated in so many different platforms and devices, and the crucial social component that has lead to the products success.

Over the course of the conversation they talk about competitors in the market, the future of the product/service, as well as health education and social outcomes of  people actually using the product. It is in interesting article on how niche market can lead to a popular success, not just for its creators, but the users of the product. Lee finishes the interview with this observation about the digital health industry as a whole, “One thing we’ve always believed is that digital health isn’t a niche segment. It’s really the future of health”

2.0 Scores An Increase of 76%

In a brief Technorati marketing study, Andre Bourque writes about how the Cloud can improve business-to-business marketing conversions in the article, B2B Inbound Marketing Study: Cloud company sees 76% increase in conversions.

As a self-acclaimed “social marketing fella,” Bourque’s article offers a rich overview that largely features interactive, multimedia communications over text, which I think reflects our 2.0 environment in general. I also believe the very idea of “social marketing” is a bi-product of 2.0.

Since a 76% increase is likely to capture any business-minded person’s attention, let the summary continue.

Bourque tells a tale of a Cloud security provider, FortyCloud’s online marketing scheme that generated inbound traffic by writing detailed security related content.

PROBLEM

However, FortyCloud was not converting (when a potential customer “signs on the dotted line,” buys something or responds favorably to an ad) enough anonymous site visitors into “leads” using a blend of premium and standard content, requiring contact information input.

SOLUTION

A 2.0 kind of company, FortyCloud, sought to increase conversion and engagement with those anonymous site visitors. Hoping to enhance their ROI (Return on Investment) FortyCloud chose BrightInfo, a 2.0 content recommendation and engagement engine to capture the errant stragglers, and it worked.

BrightInfo’s targeting algorithm (i.e., a filter used to reach consumers based on their traits and behaviors) “helped FortyCloud automatically recommend and serve up the most relevant available content to anonymous visitors.”

In the final outcome, Web 2.0 experience and ingenuity decreased FortyCloud’s bounce rate while content consumption increased.

Bourque advises that, typical B2B landing pages experience up-to 90% bounce rate, while converting only 1-4% of visitors. But with BrightInfo, customers achieve 6% higher click-through-rate on their landing pages and boost leads.

Important to note here is that an online company engaged users by giving them more 2.0 control, freedom and choices to make their own decisions relevant to why they were there in the first place.

Thanks for the heads-up, Andre!