Walk over the grand canyon and look 4,000 feet down

A "skywalk" has been built above the Grand Canyon, allowing you to walk 70 feet out across the canyon and to look straight down 4,000 feet into it, above the river. This has to be one amazing and unmatched view.

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Promote K. B. SKOBAC Blog on your website, myspace, etc

Now you can add my blog directly to your home page, start page, blog, myspace page, or anything else:

For more widgets please visit www.yourminis.com

You can get the code or easily add it through YourMinis

Superdistribution and Product Evangelism

Fred Wilson defines superdistribution as "turning every consumer into a distribution partner...every person who
buys a record, a movie, reads a newspaper, a book, every person who
buys a Sonos or a Vespa becomes a retailer of that item." He's right - it should be easy for us all to become product evangelists for everything we care about, and in turn receive compensation for it. This is strengthened by two reasons:

  1. We usually care passionately about the products we buy and use
  2. We tend to trust each other more than we trust anonymous reviews
Weaving in a compensation model to the recommendation model only makes sense. After I bought my first Sony Cybershot five years ago, I heavily recommended it to family members, leading to four quick purchases. When I made the switch to Canon's Powershot IS line, so did the many people who trust my research and recommendation. When I moved to subscription based music with Rhapsody and started obsessing over Yottamusic, five people I work with did the same. Now if I go out this week and buy a Sandisk Sansa or Toshiba Gigabeat to sync with my Rhapsody service, you can bet a few of the people I work with will too.

Look at it either way you want - I should be incentivised to continue recommending good products or rewarded for leading to sales. It won't blindly lead to bad recommendations because the trust factor will ultimately come into play after someone poorly recommends me something I had to drop $300 - $400 on.

This should be done for everything - vacation spots, concerts, and more.

Facebook use

So in line with my post yesterday proposing that Facebook turn itself into a more full featured start page with search and customized news feeds, today there's discussion on Hitwise about social network site growth and Comscore on repeat visitors. You'll notice that Facebook is second in market share of social networks (February 2007), but it has the top spot in several important categories: the average user goes to Facebook 9.4 days a month, uses the site 23.6 times a month, and goes 2.5 times a day (MySpace is 8.6, 18.9, and 2.2 on these stats respectively). This speaks to a more loyal or addicted audience. What would be more interesting is to see the results when they aren't skewed by the once a month user or the initial sign up user - how often does the average person visit a social network if they're a consistent user, someone who goes for a few months consecutively. Ten times a day? 200 times a month?

A bigger suprise - Bebo time spent blows all other sites out of the water - the average user spends 302.7 minutes a month on Bebo, in only 12.2 visits monthly (as apposed to Facebook, which is next highest at 199.9 minutes over the 23.6 visits monthly).

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Twitter Life Blogging and the Facebook Wall

Is anyone using Twitter right now? I imagine most people aren't even familiar with it, but the basic idea is short form blogging (a few sentances) that can be subscribed to via RSS and SMS (tex messaging) so that people can make mass statements to their circle of friends. It's basically text messaging to a group, but integrated into RSS so it can be mixed with other messaging sources.

I'm playing around with it, subscribing to a few feeds, but I'm not sure how it can add value to the average person. I suppose if everyone got into it this could replace or supplement the Facebook wall, which people use to update their social circle on their life, but would join up with news and information sources.

In any case, the average person in my life doesn't have a phone they receive RSS feeds on, doesn't have a pocket pc phone that makes it easy to receive 10 text messages a minute for information purposes. Without the ability to easily manage and consume mass information via mobile, does Twitter make sense for the average audience?

Speaking of the Facebook wall - how easy would it be for Facebook to become the start page for millions of people? They already spin in advertising directly into the news feed; let us ad our own news sources to our news feed, ad a Google search box up top, and you have a customized start page that would attract most of the 18 - 24 audience. Think about it, this would be so easy for Facebook to implement, and it jump ahead of Google Personalized or Netvibes in a second.


Text Starbucks to Find the Closest One Nearby (And Free Coffee)

Starbucks launched a new text message campaign where you can send a text message with your zip code to "MYSBUX" and you'll be sent back the closest 3 Starbucks to your location. To promote the new program, they're offering a free cup of coffee to anyone who comes in on March 15th between 10 a.m. and Noon.

This would be more interesting if it was GPS enabled; there are probably plenty of zip codes that have more than 3 Starbucks in them, so do you really find out which is closest to you?

Courtesy of Gizmodo, some Starbucks facts:

  • Number of web searches for nearest Starbucks in 1/07 = 3 million
  • Number of locations in the US = 9,400
  • Number of new Starbucks stores opened every day = 4
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