Welcome to Ghost

Welcome to Ghost

With the introduction of Squarespace Seven the Squarespace editor, unfortunately, became much more WYSIWYG oriented almost to the point that it reminded me of Macromedia (now Adobe) Dreamweaver.

I made a post about Ghost vs Squarespace earlier this year and at that time I decided to go with Squarespace even though it lacked a good Markdown editor, and with the new Squarespace Seven it became even more apparent that I should try out Ghost with a more distraction free and text focused editor.

After setting up on the hosted Ghost(Pro) service and starting a couple of drafts in the editor I’m pretty happy with the decision to go with Ghost, though there are a couple of features that I’m missing that I hope will be add over time.

Feature wish list for Ghost

  • Scheduled posts – Have posts queued up is pretty convenient
  • Contact form – I’m using Wufoo for now
  • Menu support – Currently done via the templates

None of the things on the whish list are deal breakers, but it sure would be nice to have those features supported on the platform going forward. For now Ghost is the best fit for me and trying new tools is always great fun! :)

Image by hover

The next billion

The next billion

The above image is from the reddit discussion ”After seeing a recent post about the population of Indonesia, this occurred to me” and is a powerful illustration of where the next billion people coming online will reside.

With much of the western world already online, over 80% according to the The World Bank, the next billion will come from other geographies centered on people dense areas in Eastern Asia and South East Asia due to scale and cost of connectivity.

This will have great implications on online product and services going ahead both in terms of user behavior and product monetization, with a heavy slant towards mobile and new types of payment solutions.

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Image by reddit user valeriepieris

The value of mobile

The value of mobile

The age old question of ”Feature, Product, Company” is more complex on mobile then on the desktop, on desktop platforms product were usually a suite of feature, but on mobile a feature can be a product with the home screen or launcher being the suite that contains the features.

This wave of atomization of products to features is clear in term of the current number of apps on iOS and Android, both hitting over the one millon mark a while back.

This perspective gives a starting point for how to determinate where the value of mobile lies, for now it seems that the value does not reside in the networks that dominanted on the desktop where your identity and attention was tied to you online logon, as with the case of Facebook Login, instead your identity and attention seems centera round either the device or portable open identifier like phone number.

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Image by flickr user GBPublic_PR under CC BY-NC 2.0

The PayPal Mafia

The PayPal Mafia

Much of the first generation of Internet businesses blew up in the Dot-com bubble back in early two thousands, while there were much crticism in mass media, a few books like eBoys by Randall Stross has given some interesting accounts of events leading up to the bubble bursting.

Even though the fall out of the Dot-com bubble was pretty nasty, a handfull of companies did survive to become multi billion businesses, one of them was PayPal which back in 2002 became a part of eBay.

Even more impressive is how a handfull of the (many) founders of PayPal went on start even more amazing companies within the technology space, to such an extent that the term PayPal Mafia was coined, with several parallels to the Fairchildren who seeded much of the semi-conductor revolution in Silicon Valley.

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Image by flickr user sacks08 under CC BY 2.0

Monetization of mobile

Monetization of mobile

The dust is settling from the Facebook and WhatsApp deal and the massive price tag has sunk in somewhat, still there are a lot of questions on how Facebook will get a return on the $19 billion acquisition.

In desktop computing environments the online advertising modell has been very successful in terms of monetization. But for mobile computing the limitations of hardware and connectivity creates a different set of cognitive limitations that influences the monetization opportunities thru ads.

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Image by flickr user Tsahi Levent-Levi under CC BY 2.0

Innovation lives everywhere

Innovation lives everywhere

There are many misconceptions about innovation in general and few have studied the subject in-depth as professor Clayton Christensen at Harvard Business School. In Christensen’s research he makes a difference between sustaining and disruptive innovation with the latter being what many people consider innovations per se.

Further more there is the common misperception that manufacturing, many times done in South East Asia, is nothing more then basic assembly lines with little value and even less room for innovation, something that even Steve Jobs disagrees with in the Isaacson book.

With sustaining innovation well on the way in manufacturing economies, mainly in China and South America, we are seeing more innovations when it comes to their respective services industries.

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Image by flickr user Prachatai under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Facebook and WhatsApp

Facebook and WhatsApp

On February 19th Facebook announce that they will acquire WhatsApp for $19 billion, making the deal the largest acquisition ever for venture-backed company, the deal sure raised some eyebrows.

Given that Facebook’s business is mainly selling ads towards its users, there was an initial worry that user data from WhatsApp would be offered to Facebook partners, but the messaging from the WhatsApp team has been clear; that it would not happen (for the time being at least).

Given the strong position the WhatsApp founder has taken against having ads and collecting user data for monetization, some early tries of other interesting means of monetization has been tested by WhatsApp and their partners.

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Image and video by Bloomberg