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The blogged wandering of Robert W. Anderson

Blaine FriendFeed

I got a call from Steve Gillmor earlier today asking if I had seen his TechCrunch post, called Blame FriendFeed.  I hadn’t.

I just read it.  It had me laughing so hard I couldn’t read through the tears in my eyes.  It’s all classic Gillmor, but when you get about two thirds down, LOL:

Here’s my demo of the difference between FriendFeed and Twitter:

Twitter: Hi, I’m having Sugar Pops for breakfast.

Ten minutes later….

FriendFeed: Hi, I’m having Sugar Pops for breakfast.

And it just gets funnier.

BTW: I misheard Steve on the phone and thought his post was called Blaine FriendFeed, a reference to Blaine Cook.  Now that’s funny.

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Schonfeld wrong on why Microsoft adopted Flash Lite

Erick Schonfeld of TechCrunch reports that Microsoft Adopts Flash Lite For Windows Mobile As a Stopgap Measure.  For those not keeping track of this, Adobe stopped supporting flash on Windows Mobile some time back.  And now it looks like Microsoft has licensed the Flash Lite run time for Windows Mobile directly.

This is good news for Windows Mobile users, but Shonfeld is wrong about Microsoft’s reasons.  He says,

… for Microsoft, this is just a stopgap measure until it can gain more traction for Silverlight, its Flash-competitor. The mobile version of Sliverlight 2.0 does not ship until the second quarter. Making WinMo more capable won’t detract from Silverlight’s appeal. There is a desperate need to get a full Flash-like experience on a mobile device. Flash itself is supposedly too slow on mobile phones. That leaves an opening for Microsoft win over converts to Silverlight by bringing video, animation, and other rich-media experiences to mobile. Nokia is already on board.

Does he really think that Microsoft would get into bed with Adobe Flash just because the Silverlight runtime doesn’t ship for one more quarter?

No way.

Microsoft is licensing Flash because they realize that they are losing to the iPhone.  Simply put, Microsoft wants to make Windows Mobile better.  Only running Silverlight would be a limitation, not an advantage.  So they license Flash.  My guess is that they’ll have a pre-installed Java runtime too.

On a related note, licensing ActiveSync to Apple has been much debated.  Was is a good thing for Microsoft?  Yes, and it is consistent with Microsoft licensing Flash Lite.  Why?

  • I think Microsoft has made the decision that Windows Mobile has to compete on its own merits (and not because it is a part of a greater lock-in with Microsoft Office). 
  • Microsoft also wants to protect their back-office Exchange licensing; what better way to do that than to make it easier for mobile handsets to support Exchange?

Adopting Flash is a step in the right direction.  And licensing ActiveSync forces this point home.

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TechCrunch 5

Had a great time at Mike Arrington’s party last night, TechCrunch 5.

These parties are on an upward trajectory (I wrote about the previous one here). Last time there were boxes of pizza strewn about; this time there was catering — some of the food was quite good. Last time it was very cold in the backyard; this time there was a tent. Last time it was pretty full; this time it was absolutely packed. Next time, I think Mike is going to have to get an even bigger tent.
Anyway, thanks to Mike and Robert Scoble for the great time. I see in the pictures that Robert and Shel Israel took off their shirts for a photo (I missed that). Here are the Flickr photos. Even better, Robert’s Dad was there. And of course Patrick Scoble was also there. Robert’s dad must be very proud of his son / grandson.

Some people I talked to:

  • I ran into Nima Dilmaghani, a developer evangelist at Microsoft. I did a double-take when I saw him, because I don’t usually see Microsoft people at these events. He has the right approach to .NET evangelism: he doesn’t claim it is the right answer to every problem, but can knowledgably explain the relative benefits of the platform in an honest way. Note that link is to his empty WordPress blog — I’m hoping that will shame him into getting his blogging going 😉
  • I also talked with Ramana Kovi of ePlatform; look for their launch soon.
    Keep your eye on Kevin Burton’s Feed Blog. Word has it he was chasing a scoop last night; I don’t know what it was.
  • I talked a bit to Andrew Bunner, Director of Engineering of Rojo. He demonstrated some of the new features for me. I asked him about the AttentionTrust and its principles; particularly about principal #2, Mobility (we’re looking into that). In talking to him, though, I think that there is still a general misunderstanding about the AttentionTrust. It is about the 4 principles and the mission. That’s it. The ATX (attention recorder) allows you to store locally and / or provide data to services (one right now, ROOT). Using it isn’t in any way a requirement of the AttentionTrust’s principles.
  • I saw Zach Coelius again, his company Triggit is coming along. I realized he reminds me of my best man, David Shaw.

And many others, too. A splendid time for all, methinks.

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TechCrunch / Riya launch party

I attended the TechCrunch / Riya launch party last night. Pictures on Flickr are here. It was a good time — thanks to Michael Arrington for hosting the party.

Some people I met or reconnected with:

  • Steve Gillmor. We talked about the AttentionTrust a bit; I’ll blog more on that soon. Unfortunately I jokingly raised the “Office Dead” topic with him and Robert Scoble again and found myself in a minor repeat of the Geek Dinner / Parking Lot discussion (described here in a previous post).
  • Of course, Robert Scoble — he brought his son. Seems like a nice kid.
  • Zach Coelius of Triggit. Zach, it looks like you jumped on FeedBurner after our discussion!
  • Ramana Kovi of ePlatform. Robert Scoble first blogged about ePlatform here. I sat in on a demonstration that Ramana gave to Steve. Kind of a Web portal allowing parents to manage the whole family’s Internet experience. All on .NET, too.
  • Many of the Meetro guys. They all moved out here from Chicago a few weeks back to setup shop in the Valley.

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