Audio: The Battle Over Books
I wanted to watch The Battle Over Books at the New York Public Library. I was sad when I forgot about it and missed it but have been eagerly awaiting the video which has been slow to show up.
The audio is up now though certain parts of it are a little jumpy. From my point of veiw the The Authors Guild seems to just be saying the same thing over an over again. Being the geek I am I will most likely watch the video once that come out as well.
Problem Solved: TiVo records audio but no video
I recently had a very interesting TiVo problem. Nothing in the FAQ was helpful and I was eve given the run around in the help forums. I was trying to record survivor and was getting audio only and no video. All the connections were correct and everything had power and it was not a local outage.
What happened? As it turned out TiVo was recording the High Definition channel. I do not have HiDef but it seems that Comcast was nice enough to give me the listings and let me listen to the audio. The show was on the same time but just a different channel.
If you are getting great audio and no video be sure you’re not recording the High Definition channel by accident.
Google Analytics will not crush Mint or Measure Map
Well Google Analytics is out and now every other stat counter is doomed. Right? Who can stand up to google? I refuse to believe any of this is true and that Google’s entrance in to stats will make little impact with Mint or Measure Map.
Who has made the claim that google will crush all and have actually used Analytics? Wow it’s complicated. There are so many menus and half the time I have no idea what the graph is even representing. A large portion of the interface is also devoted to adwords campaigns and detailed study of how people move though your website. More then 50% of Analytics is devoted to stat tracking that 90% of the people using it for free will have little use for.
Is google making a mistake? No of course not. Google is just not trying to get me to use their software. What they are really looking for is a way for people to get more out of adwords and spend more money with google. This will be good for corporate or high volume websites that advertise through adwords but few others. Google is going after the fortune 500 companies who will dump tons of money in to adwords. That is who their site is optimised for.
Now lets look at Mint and Measure Map. Who are they optimised for? While I have not used Mint there are some very glaring things that show it might not be for everyone. For one it only works in Firefox and Safari. Second it’s biggest focus is on referrers and how people came to your site and less on what they did when they actually got there. That alone shows that this is not a stat tracker for every one and Sean Inman has always been forward about that. He’s not trying to compete with Google. His market is the small web site owner who wants to know hoe people are coming to his site. Google offers the same functionality but it’s berried in adwords specific jargon and other tracking that most sites have no need for.
Measure Map is even another step down. It’s stats in it’s most simplistic form. It gives you exactly what you want to know and no more. Even my grandmother would understand the stats that Measure Map is putting out. Another things no one is pointing out is that Measure Map is blog specific. If you don’t have a blog you can’t even use Measure Map. This is not a site wide solution and there is no reason to be. I’ve only used it for a couple of days and I’m amazed how such a clean and simple interface can display so much information. Websites like this help remind me that graphic artists like Sean Inman, Jeffrey Veen, and myself need to be more involved in web startups.
I actually plan of dropping Analytics in the near future. It’s not giving me anything I can’t get anywhere else. Measure Map has shown me data in a way I have not seen before and has helped me see my blog in a new light. Google’s Analytics will be bigger then Mint or Measure Map but they will not own the market. Mint and Measure Map provide uniquely distinct stats in a way google can’t and in that light they have already won.
Building my own personal search engine
I have yet to jump on the personal search engine thing. Rollyo looks awesome but I’ve just been unexcited about building my own search. And finally I think I’ve figured out why. Rollyo is trying to make me act like Yahoo. I don’t want to take the time to make a comprehensive web designer search or any kind of search for a category.
What I would like is to be able to comprehensively search my web history. Del.icio.us has a good start by letting you bookmark pages. I don’t know about you but I have not been putting in descriptions for for each link and some times I even skimp on tags just because I don’t want to put that much effort into it.
The less meta information I put in to del.icio.us the less useful del.icio.us is. What I really need is a way to easily search the sites, not the links, that I’ve entered in to del.icio.us.
The is where Rollyo’s limitations become more apparent. There is no way to mass upload links with any import function. On top of that who would really want to keep having to go back to Rollyo to re-upload links? What Rollyo needs (Or any site that would like to build this) is a way to create a search engine that subscribes to an RSS feed like my del.icio.us feed.
Another problem with Rollyo is how they treat your uploaded links:
Rollyo searches entire sites such as www.cnn.com or support.apple.com, but not parts of sites, such as www.cnn.com/politics/.
While the way Rollyo is set up that makes the most sense. But if it’s working off of my del.icio.us links then I most likely don’t want to search entire site and would instead like to just search the page I linked to. While I’m not sure about that assertion for every one I would like the ability to toggle between searching the entire site and the specified link.
Combining a custom search engine with an RSS feed of links would make a powerful search tool that could access your search history on a much deeper layer then del.icio.us allows. It might also encourage me to bookmark more sites that I wouldn’t bother with other wise. Then I could bookmark things with out worrying what the meta data is because I could just search for it later.
As far as I know there is no other site that comes close to this type of service and I think it would be interesting to see some one build something like this out.