Home Weekly Wrapup, 25-29 August 2008

Weekly Wrapup, 25-29 August 2008

It’s the weekend, so time to review the Web tech news, reviews and analysis we brought you this week on ReadWriteWeb. On the product side we reported on Facebook hitting 100 million users, checked out 10 great web apps for school, looked at the state of online accounting, and reviewed the latest in lifestreaming. On the trends side we did a special podcast on online music trends, investigated RSS news from Google and Friendfeed, reported on Facebook being used in the US elections, and analyzed YouTube’s business.

Web Products

Facebook Hits 100 Million Users

Fast growing social network Facebook has hit the 100 million users mark, according to a statement this week by Dave Morin, the company’s Senior Platform Manager.

How does that compare to MySpace’s ascent? A guy named Rick appears to have become MySpace’s 100 millionth registered user in 2006. MySpace took 3 years after launch to hit that magic number; for Facebook it took 4 years and 6 months.

Back to School: 10 Great Web Apps for College Students

For a lot of college students, the new semester is just around the corner. Last year, we created a long list of great Web 2.0 tools that we thought would be helpful for college students.

But given how fast things develop on the web, we thought we would revisit this topic again this year and look at some of the most useful Web 2.0 tools that have the potential to help students do better in school, collaborate with their fellow students, and save them time.

Online Accounting: State of the Market

Accounting software for small business and personal use is increasingly moving from the desktop to online. However, compared to other office software, this transition to online has been relatively slow. Partly that’s due to user reticence: writing a document online and sharing it with others (via Google Docs, Office Live, Zoho, or whatever you use) is one thing. Entering sensitive financial information into your browser is harder to adjust to.

So what is the state of online accounting software? In this post we tell you about our awkward experiences trying out different packages. Also do check out the comments, because there’s a lot of new info there.

Jaiku Returns With Unlimited Invites

When Google acquired the microblogging service Jaiku in October of last year, many people had high hopes for Jaiku’s future. Would a Google-flavored Twitter soon show up everywhere from iGoogle to the upcoming Android handset, we wondered? Instead, news from the company slowed to a trickle and the doors stayed locked to newcomers – signs that many took to mean Google had essentially abandoned the service. But this week, things are happening at Jaiku once again – most notably, unlimited invites are now available. Is Jaiku poised to make a comeback?

Sweetcron: Your Lifestream on Your Server

We were pretty excited when we first heard about Sweetcron, a self-hosted lifestreaming application developed by Yongfook. This week, after a bit of a delay, Sweetcron has finally released its software and we immediately downloaded and installed it ourselves. While it is still pretty barebone, Sweetcron represents a great solution for those who don’t necessarily want to participate in the discussions on Friendfeed, but still would like to set up a lifestream.


Web Trends

RWW Live: Online Music (Special Guests From Imeem, Yahoo Music, Rhapsody)

In this week’s episode of RWW Live, our live podcast show, our topic was online music and we had 3 very special guests on the show: Dalton Caldwell, founder and CEO of Imeem; Lucas Gonze, founder of Webjay and until recently a senior member of the Yahoo Music team; and Rob Williams, Senior VP of Music Software at RealNetworks. Also on the show were Sean Ammirati (host), Richard MacManus and Marshall Kirkpatrick. The audio is archived below for your listening pleasure.

The show included many interesting factoids about Imeem, Yahoo Music and Rhapsody. But more importantly there was a lot of fascinating discussion of online music trends and where the music industry is headed.

You can listen to the entire show here (select Episode 6):

Along with the podcast show, we also ran a poll: What are your favorite online music streaming services? See the results below, and vote for your favorites:

Google Moves to Mainstream RSS With A Simple Name Change

For all its supposed simplicity, Really Simple Syndication or RSS has continued to confuse and intimidate millions of people online years after its introduction. What can be done to make RSS more mainstream? Google plans to roll out a small but simple feature that could go a long way. We wouldn’t be surprised to see every blog publishing service follow suit.

“Follow this blog” is a clear call to action and those words will soon grace the header of every blog on Blogger.com around the web. When users click that link they’ll be taken to either a tab on their Blogger dashboard, presumably if they have an account and are logged in, or be introduced to Google Reader, the company’s RSS reader. It’s a simple, brilliant plan and we wonder what took so long.

See also: Speed Up RSS? FriendFeed’s Going to Try

“Facebook Helped Me Win,” Claims Politician

In Tampa, Florida, a local politician is giving credit to Facebook for his recent win in the primaries for the local County Commission. On Facebook, the crowd is still very young, with an average age of 22.96 as of this February. Typically, the youth vote, although coveted, could not be counted on thanks to low turnout of young voters at the polls. However, this small time local election may prove to be one of the first examples of the huge impact Gen Y can have on the political process.

Everything You Thought You Knew About the Business of YouTube Was Wrong

Have you turned up your nose at YouTube for being born from low quality, financially unsustainable, pirated content? If you’ve made that argument in conversation before (and we know many people do) – new claims from YouTube itself now indicate that you’d be wrong. Google claims that 90% of the owners of copyrighted content are now advertising against pirated video they own, when they find it using YouTube’s new content ID technology. The news upends many long held beliefs about the site.


That’s a wrap for another week! Enjoy your weekend everyone.

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The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

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