Blog Archive

December 22, 2008
Mobile Commons Legislative Lookup Tool

In building technology for campaigns -- electoral and otherwise -- one of the most difficult tasks is determining which congressional district you're working in. The databases which hold such information are generally out of date, proprietary or without APIs. Worst of all, they're tied only to existing voters and their addresses, versus a specific location on a map. This means that it's next to impossible to target unregistered voters with relevant campaign information.

December 4, 2008
p @tipjoy $

Over the summer, I posted a well distributed article called "How Twitter Will be Worth $1.5 Billion by Next Year." Go read it. I outlined the schema where one would send money to friends via Twitter using the format "p innonate $5" much like people "d" for a direct message. Today, my friends at TipJoy realized this vision by announcing the exact* functionality. Hip hip hooray! *When I say exact, there's a big nuance to remember.

June 30, 2008
How Twitter Will be Worth $1.5 Billion by Next Year

Twitter's not going to make their money with advertising. So how can they be a Billion Dollar Company in a year? By listening to me. Twitter should take full advantage of their messaging platform, user base and user disposition to lead in the P2P mobile payments space. They can become the next PayPal, and are more poised to become that than PayPal itself. Let's rewind for a second. Last year, I wrote an in depth analysis about mobile payments and concluded that, in order to move forward:

December 31, 2007
My iPhone should be a MacPhone too

I bought an iPhone a month ago and I love it. Let's start with that. But don't anyone think for a moment that I'm not keeping tabs on the pluses and minuses. The first big, big minus I have to share is the fact that there's no interface on my computer to use the phone while it's plugged in. The real inconvenience here is that I only have two ears and hate switching headphones between my phone and my computer.

November 27, 2007
Open Phones: Apple is why Verizon is opening up

The Silicon Alley Insider is reporting that Verizon is opening their network to all CDMA phones and any apps which want to run on those phones. Not to brag, but this is what I called when I wrote "The Carrier Coup" back in June. In that post, I explained that "Safari as the iPhone SDK" was a revolutionary win not just for Apple, but for the whole industry. I noted:

October 11, 2007
Twitter "Tips" Might Not be for Ads

UPDATE: I just got another “tip” to “Invite your friends! Send ‘invite 212-555-1212’”. These tips are just tips. A few days ago I was rocketed to TechCrunch and CNET fame when Charlie O’Donnell posted a screenshot (here and below) of a message from Caroline McCarthy to me about our “vaporband” TheSAC (Silicon Alley Cats). But that’s not important. What’s important is that Charlie’s post seemed to suggest that these “Tips” coming in on our SMS “Tweets” were signs that Twitter would soon be sending contextual ads with out messages and finally (thank G-d) monetizing their “Asynchronous Ambience as a Service” (AAaS/messaging) platform.

September 6, 2007
What's up with Twitter? Problems, problems.

I would have Twittered this question, but it seems as though good ol' Twitter is having troubles today. 500 and 404 messages all over the place. Anyone know what's up?

July 6, 2007
How many days to unlock an iPhone?

5 days to find three ways to unlock the iPhone. moconews has the round-up here. I'm most interested the 4th, not yet successful way: -- The fourth one, from UK, where Belfast, U.K.-based Uniquephones says its engineers are working around the clock in several countries andare close to cracking the complex security system. They even have a site and a blog set up. The key to unlocking the phone is breaking the encryption process that protects the token sent through the iTunes activation process to an iPhone's firmware, the company says.

June 27, 2007
The Carrier Coup – Why the iPhone is actually such a big deal

Some people are doing a fantastic job explaining the iPhone hype, but I think there's a huge piece missing in all this analysis (otherwise, I'd stay shut-up on the exhausted matter). The iPhone is a big deal because of the Safari as the SDK announcement. Until now, carriers ruled their devices with tyrannical control, stifling innovation at any turn. If a third-party wanted to get software on a device, they had to go through the carriers.

June 2, 2007
What Wireless Carriers Could Learn From Facebook

I'm spending my Saturday night reviewing a WAP development proposal for one of my clients, and any such work gets me thinking about how screwy the whole mobile system is here in the USA, much to the fault of the carriers. But as I sit here watching ESPN, I see a commercial for their ESPN mobile app/service on Verizon (announced in mid-May). This gets me thinking. The advertised service is basically a mirror of their ESPN Mobile MVNO service, but hosted on the "