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My Google+ Anecdote: Engagement Gone Missing

Google+Google+ launched nearly a year ago, and I remember it vividly. It seemed like such a cool concept: an answer to all the annoyances that were found throughout Facebook. I got in on the action early, before the wider unveiling. And I found myself meeting new people and engaging in fascinating conversations.

The Google+ crowd was savvy and smart. Granted, much of the conversation initially was pretty meta. We were using a new tool to discuss how cool it was to be using a new tool to discuss how we were using it… that sort of thing.

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A Tale of Two Cautious Entrepreneurs

Google+Back in 2008, I was finishing up my MBA at Purdue University when an opportunity presented itself. I was the teaching assistant to Scott Jones (yes, that Scott Jones) who was, at the time, teaching an entrepreneurship capstone course.

A PhD student approached me with a demo of patent pending technology that had already received $50,000 of funding and asked if I’d be interested in putting together a business plan. I said yes. We entered three competitions in the area and placed first in one and third in the other two.

Here’s the first paragraph from that business plan (from March 2008, unchanged): Continue Reading »

Defining Success of [Tech] Companies

Let’s face it: we all love making comparisons. It’s an easy way to simplify a point. The problem, though, lies in the implicit assumptions and interpretations that go along with a comparison. Meaning, as soon as you make your comparison, it’s as if you’re holding all else equal while at the same time elevating your comparison to a higher level of credibility as compared to any of the unspoken alternative comparisons involving the two things you’re comparing.

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Silicon Alley Insider Embellishes WSJ Headline In Attempt to Steal Page Views

How do you like my title? It came from a Wall Street Journal article entitled “Microsoft Plans Shake Up” which Henry Blodget of Silicon Alley Insider linked to, added an intro that added nothing new, and then added quite the Google-bait headline of “Microsoft Shaking Up Entertainment Group In Desperate Attempt To Catch Apple And Google”.

Now, full disclosure, I work for Microsoft but not in this division. And I have nothing to do with whatever this story is about. It seems like an interesting scoop for the WSJ, but Blodget’s title is tricking Techmeme into thinking it should be the leader story. So as a fellow blogger, I thought I’d one up Mr. Blodget with an equally exciting title of my own and a piece of advice:

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Nice Job, Bing: Android Now Less Interesting to Me

The Bing team today unveiled turn-by-turn directions for Windows Phones. Now for those that know me, you may know that I currently am using an Android phone (yeah, yeah, I work for Microsoft and use an Android phone; it happens). And one of the reasons specifically was for the free GPS app available via Google.

Having a phone with this kind of app makes my life less complicated, as it removes one more gadget from my life that I’d just as soon not have separately. But lately my Android phone has felt sluggish (it’s a G1), and with this announcement, I think it’s safe to say that I’m looking at getting myself a nice new Windows Phone 7 this holiday season. Anyone else making a major phone change soon?

Practically Ideal Episode 2: Politics, Tech, & Movies

podcastLogan and I are at it again with another episode of our new podcast: Practically Ideal (get episode 2 here, right-click and select “Save Link As…”). This week we’re discussing progressivism (general Democrat views) vs. conservatism (general Republican views) and figuring out if/where we fit in.

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Complainers Now Praising Microsoft

microsoft_logo_2It’s a slow news day (should be, it’s Sunday) and good ol’ Mini-Microsoft has taken the top spot over at Techmeme. For those unfamiliar, Mini-Microsoft is an anonymous blogger and Microsoft employee who has been calling for radical change to happen at Microsoft for years. He (she?) has been quiet since the last round of layoffs but decided to share some praise today in a post titled “Microsoft Has Turned The Corner.”

From Mini’s blog:

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It’s official: I now use Bing instead of Google

bingI know what you’re thinking: I work for Microsoft, so of course I’m going to use Bing! The truth is, though, that I’ve been using Google as my default search engine up until Bing was released two weeks ago. Previously, I just didn’t find any compelling reason to use Microsoft’s search engine(s). I like to think of myself as someone who doesn’t change habits just because he works for a company. Rather, I need to want to change a habit, if that makes sense.

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