Random Links on a Tuesday

Here comes one of those link posts, comprised of topics that are interesting to me, but not enough to write more than a few words.

Facebook launches Graph Search

Wired has the full story of how Graph Search came to be. I bemoaned Facebook’s lost search opportunity years ago, and apparently, I wasn’t alone, given that they snapped up Lars Rasmussen and put him on the task. Yes, the same Lars Rasmussen who hit with Google Maps and missed with Google Wave.

Graph Search looks very compelling, and Facebook has been careful to differentiate it from traditional web search. I expect Graph Search to cause mass panic before it eventually shows value, assuming Facebook sticks to its guns in the face of pressure from users. The biggest problem for Graph Search will be educating its users to use it instead of the Google. Messing with workflow is always precarious.

Graph Search is launching slowly and only indexing profiles, not status, at least not yet. Update your privacy settings accordingly.

Larry Page speaks

I don’t usually read interviews, but this one that Wired did with Larry Page has some interesting nuggets.

Hacking your home, in a bad way

Internet of Things, which is slowly being rebranded M2M, has awesome potential. If you read here, you know I’m a big fan. Troy Hunt has a cautionary post about how connecting all those things to the internets could put you at risk. It’s worth a read, and he covers many of the points that make me nervous about going all-in on IoT.

IoT needs a WC3-type spec and soon. There’s probably one out there, but I haven’t heard of anything gaining momentum yet. Give it 18 months and few high-profile hacks.

Rapidly evolving personal assistants

Expect Labs is pushing the envelope of what device-based personal assistants can do with MindMeld. For now, MindMeld is iOS-only, which seems odd, and focuses on conversations with Facebook friends, also odd, but it shows some pretty interesting technology.

Devices get smarter because, yay, apps!

One big theme from CES was apps for your car, e.g. Ford AppLink, which has opened for developers. I can’t wait to see what comes from that effort, and given that any car with apps will need connectivity, at least intermittently, I hope to see cool projects spawn from the connected car, e.g. using a wireless mesh network of connected cars to improve traffic information and prevent accidents.

Years ago, I saw a proposal for metro wifi based on connected cars. If I remember correctly, it proposed that densely-populated cities could build a meshed network using cars as access points. Crazy, but possible in theory.

You could be another device getting smarter because of apps, if you have a Nike FuelBand. They’ve finally opened up their APIs, something Noel (@noelportugal) has been eagerly awaiting since he bought a FuelBand at SXSW last year.

Yay, apps!

Java vs. Javascript

This one is for all the people you support. Make sure you let them know that Java and JavaScript are two very different things. It happened to me; it can happen to you too.

Find the comments.




  1. I think digital assistants have huge promise for the enterprise and is one to watch. Check out this story: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/22/siri-do-engine-apple-iphone_n_2499165.html The apps in cars thing is interesting too. Suddenly the Google driverless cars in the context of Google Maps combined with an app development community seems close (hackathon soon). Not new though: CEMEX in Mexico have been using wired trucks for years effectively! http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/5.07/cemex.html Nice collection of fluffy links though.

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