John Edwards is the first presidential candidate to go carbon neutral. Not only has the campaign taken steps to offset its carbon footprint and conserve energy, they have also launched ReduceYourCarbon.com a site that lets people pledge to reduce carbon emissions through concrete steps like changing incandescents to fluorescents, adjust the thermostat, improve fuel economy through reducing driving or keeping tires inflated.
So what do I do on the weekends to get away from the office?
Went out for a fun session yesterday with Hampig. Beautiful blue skies, clear water and just a slight sideshore breeze. We paddled down from Kaimana beach across to pops and then back along the shore. I tried to snag a wave at Canoe's but waaay too many people all over the place. I went over to Queens and quickly hopped onto a wave no one wanted. Caught a nice right, and with the paddle was able to get ahead of the section and zip along the reform inside. I realized I needed to wax the nose of my board as I tried to cross step for a hang five. We then hugged the shoreline to get out of the headwind and caught another wave at Publics. I tried to get Hampig to come out to Old Man's with me, but a decent set sent her back into the channel for turning practice. I caught a couple of waves before my feet started to cramp up. All in all, another fantastic day in the water. Saw several other SUP boards launching when we left. They are going to need traffic control soon with all these boards around ;)
Stand up paddle surfing is an aspect of surfing that has seen a recent resurgence in the Hawaiian Islands. For those that are not familiar with the sport, it entails standing on a large longboard and propelling yourself with essentially a canoe paddle. It is a sport practiced at one time by the beach boys of Waikiki with roots that likely trace back even further. Recently, it has been picked up by watermen as an alternative way to ride surf and as a means of staying in shape. The level of surfing on stand up paddle boards has sky rocketed in the last few years with feats such as Archie Kalepa's crossing between Molokai and Oahu and Laird Hamilton's recent foray out at Jaws on a stand up paddle board.
If you’re still playing the old single Web site game, aren’t using syndication strategically, and haven’t leveraged the entire Web as a platform for your content and services, changes are that you’re at a significant competitive disadvantage. Even the page views/advertising issues aren’t as big as expected. Widgets actually don’t take away from business models based on advertising, and in fact, can complement advertising viewership significantly.
M&M just released a pretty fun little WOM brand site at http://www.becomeanmm.com/ where you can create your own M&M character. Pretty fun stuff and a good showcase of where brands are taking their message. Good article in USA Today
Check out my captain:
Techpresident is a great new site tracking presidential candidates and their influence online, particularly via social network. You can see stats on the number of Myspace friends, new items, spending on keywords, etc. Check it.
Box.net released a killer new widget today. I can't for some reason copy the code using firefox on my Mac, but I sent them an email to see what they have to say.
So why is this widget so cool? Well, it’s a music player. It’s a photo sharing tool. It’s a way to distribute large files. In other words, it’s just an incredibly useful tool with numerous applications.
Beyond its utility, there are a couple of other things to note.
I have not seen a widget that does a better job of enabling new sign-ups (and logins) through the body of the widget. To date, services that require registration have had a real hard time making effective use of widgets. Opening up a new browser window and forcing someone to join or sign in is just so ….. clunky. It sort of defeats the whole point of being a distributed service.
Box.net does an extremely elegant job of making new sign ups fast, easy, and painless – all within the body of the widget. Anybody who has been grappling with how to reconcile forced registrations with widgets should definitely take a few minutes to try out Box.net’s solution. You might learn something – I know that I did.
So what are the implications of this? Let’s say that I’m reading a blog and there’s a music track that I like being shared via a Box.net widget. Without ever leaving the blog, I can grab the music track, join Box.net, and set up my own Box.net widget pre-loaded with that music track. And of course, it doesn’t have to be a music track. It could be a photo, a presentation, a whitepaper. It’s easy to imagine Box.net enabling a rapid spread of files around the Web.
The other thing that I love about this widget is how it fits into Box.net’s business model. Box.net makes money by charging folks for file storage. They give you up to 1GB of file storage for free, and up to 5GB for $4.99 per month. What the widget does is to sign up people for the free trial version of the service, all within the user experience of the widget publisher site.
By providing a one click “Share in my Box” functionality, Box.net is effectively leveraging the content of the widget publisher to propagate its widgets - and more importantly, sell its file storage service. The beauty is that folks don’t even know they’re signing up for a free trial of a file storage service – they are just grabbing a piece of media that they like for their blog. It’s brilliant. From a business model perspective, it’s far more intuitive than say, YouTube’s widget strategy.
So while the debate continues about whether widgets can ever make money, Box.net has quietly built a widget that will drive qualified lead after qualified lead to their revenue engine. c