Facebook and the Future

My guess is that in ten years from now, Facebook will still be around, but with a different purpose. It will be just like telephone books used to be a few years ago: A register with the most important contact information of all of us. Though the conversations will take place on different channels.

Why should that happen? I suppose that being listed at a stock exchange will put pressure on Mark to get money from the data he has on his servers. A result will be that people are more careful with what kind of information they give to Facebook. That’s just a feeling and time might prove me right.

Where could conversation take place? I really like the idea of Diaspora, that everyone is owner of his data. The problem right now is that most of the people don’t own a server. That is why I ask myself: Why not offer a server plus Diaspora account for one Euro per month and one month for free for every friend you recruit? Already today but even more in future being disposer of one’s data might be worth some money.

Bloomberg Businessweek about Diaspora (in an article worth reading):

In 2011 the company earned $5.11 per user, primarily by serving up targeted ads.

[…]

They kept talking about where to go, how to be more product-focused, and how Diaspora’s decentralized structure makes it different. Without knowing it, Diaspora was starting to play around with the ideas that had been percolating at other startups. When you own your own data, new possibilities open up: You can learn from it and profit from it. Startups are trying to see if those added benefits can shake users out of their complacency.

One model getting attention is so-called personal data lockers, which let people aggregate their data and selectively share them with businesses they trust. A new startup, Personal, has $7.6 million from funders including Steve Case’s Revolution venture fund and another locker, Singly, recently closed a $7 million round. Swift (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication), the global cooperative that processes wire transfers between banks, plans to start testing its own locker.

Instagram

This is a typical instagram picture, I would say. I went to the movies and enjoyed the atmosphere there but with the angle of my iPhone there was no change to capture it. So I just shot the curtain and thought „Let’s see what instagram can make out of that.“

This already shows one of the main reasons why the company is incredibly successful right now: The algorithm of the filter improve the quality of pictures tremendously and it just takes a few clicks. You push the button without thinking because you know what the software can do. Some people say, that the pics looks like coming out of a 70s polaroid, but they are wrong. Of course, you cannot do as many adjustments as with other programs, but this is an advantage. The app is about easy sharing and therefore the post- production has to be fast. Fast uploads is the third reason for their success. What I like about the company is that they always stick to these functions and nothing else. They did not add something nobody would use, rather lead to confusion. That is why they have so few employees but nevertheless thirty million users.

With this increase of quality an interesting problem is rising up: There is a danger that we will be lavished by great picture with the consequence that every single picture is not that valuable. We cannot be surprised anymore which takes away the possibility to provoke something with a picture.

You cannot blame the founders to sell their company especially for this amount of money. But still it’s sad that the big five internet companies won’t permit any new competitor. Now it is the turn of new start ups to beat the grown ups, or for flickr to get back on their feet. You could argue that instagram is twitter with photos and it would be great if twitter would decide to establish a competitor.

I recommend to read this article and to watch this interview.

Berlin

Mit fünf Tagen war mein Aufenthalt in Berlin nicht besonders lang, doch lang genug, um ein paar tolle Orte zu finden und sie zur Erinnerung zu notieren. Eine Art Reiseführer. Version 1.

Berlin weiterlesen

Google…

Daring Fireball dazu:

Google’s transition into the new Microsoft is now complete: fancy-pants sci-fi concept video to promote stunningly awkward augmented reality glasses.

Joe Stracci on Project Glass:

There’s some incredible Orwellian doublespeak at work here, e.g., technology that “helps you explore and share your world, putting you back in the moment.” As far as I can tell, it doesn’t help you to explore your world at all. It helps Google to explore your world.

Right. Let’s pretend Google could actually build and ship something exactly like what they show in their concept video. Think about the data Google is collecting about the video’s protagonist.

More realistic version of Google’s concept video for Glass:

Zeitumstellung

Die Zeitumstellung am letzten Wochenende war die erste, die ich total verschlief. Also nicht in dem Sinn, dass ich zum Bäcker ging, und er hatte schon seit einer Stunde geschlossen, sondern dass mein Leben weiter funktionierte, weil sich mein Handy von allein umgestellt hatte. Es war, als hätte es die Zeitverschiebung gar nicht gegeben. Erst heute, Tage später also, erfuhr ich davon. Wenn ich mir das so überlege: Ganz schön krass, oder?

iPad

Langsam haben wir uns dran gewöhnt: Jährt sich die Einführung eines Apple Produkts, kocht erst die Gerüchteküche hoch und präsentiert viele Vermutungen, was der Neue alles können könnte. Dann tauchen nach und nach Bilder von Zulieferfirmen auf, die nahelegen: Viel ändern wird sich nicht. Nach der Präsentation ist bei einigen trotzdem die Enttäuschung groß. Sie wissen zwar nicht, was sie sich gewünscht hätten, aber ein bisschen toller hätte es schon sein müssen. Wo blieb denn die große Überraschung, bitte? Der Apple- Verachter bekommt also sein Argumentationsmaterial, der Fan ist trotzdem begeistert. Standard.

Diesmal war die größte Überraschung, dass die Zahl nach dem Namen verschwand. Meiner Meinung nach will Apple damit nur eines sagen: Bei dem iPad wird sich nicht mehr viel ändern. Mit der Nummer eins war das Produkt definiert, jetzt wird es nur immer besser, und das ist auch okay. MacBooks werden ja auch nicht weiter durchnummeriert. Und ganz ehrlich, im Moment gibt es doch nichts, was dem Ding fehlt. Revolutionäre Produkte tauchen auf, wenn niemand sie erwartet.