Home Weekly Wrapup: Facebook Overtakes MySpace, OpenID Success, Kindle 2, And More…

Weekly Wrapup: Facebook Overtakes MySpace, OpenID Success, Kindle 2, And More…

In this edition of the Weekly Wrapup, our newsletter summarising the top stories of the week, we look at the latest social networking statistics showing that Facebook has overtaken MySpace, review a product that’s had great success using OpenID, continue our series on recommendation engines, check out the new version of Amazon’s Kindle e-book reader, review 4 innovative location-based apps, and more. Also check out the highlights from our Enterprise Channel and Jobwire, ReadWriteWeb’s new product which tracks hires in tech and new media.

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Web Trends

MySpace’s Former Owner: Facebook Will Win – for Now

Brett Brewer, who co-founded InterMix Media – the company that developed MySpace – and turned a tidy profit when that company and MySpace were sold to NewsCorp for $580 million, says MySpace’s ongoing battle for social network supremacy with Facebook won’t last much longer. In his opinion, Facebook has already won – but it won’t remain a winner for long.

See also: MySpace: User Engagement Up, Unique Users Flat

25 Random Things Meme Is a Boon for Facebook

According to the latest data from Compete, the ’25 Random Things About Me’ meme has not only given us access to a plethora of random facts about people we barely know, but this digital fad has also been good for Facebook. According to the latest data from Compete, four times more people than usual visited the ‘Notes’ section on Facebook in January. Compete estimates that close to 20 million users used ‘Notes’ in January, while only about 4 million used it in October 2008.

Comcast Property Sees 92% Success Rate With New OpenID Method

The most-watched geek event of the week may have been the OpenID UX (User Experience) Summit, hosted at the Facebook headquaters. The most discussed moment of the day will surely be the presentation by Comcast’s Plaxo team.

Plaxo and Google have collaborated on an OpenID method that may represent the solution to OpenID’s biggest problems: it’s too unknown, it’s too complicated and it’s too arduous. Today at the User Experience Summit, Plaxo announced that early tests of its new OpenID login system had a 92% success rate – unheard of in the industry. OpenID’s usability problems appear closer than ever to being solved for good.

A-Team Update: Series A Funding Growth Is Strong

We first reported on VC Series A deals in the web-tech sector in October 2008, following the financial meltdown, and we updated our coverage in November, reporting some improvement. Now it is time for the good news from December and January. The amount invested by VCs in Series A deals for web-tech ventures went up from $19.1 million in November to $28.8 million in December, and up another notch to $30.3 million in January. Looking very good.

Craig Newmark’s Keynote Unlocks the Secrets to Building a Community

In an era where user generated content is changing our entire culture, rare is the company that can successfully harness the collective creativeness of its community, cultivate loyalty, make money consistently, and continue to flourish. Enter Craigslist. Listed as the tenth top site in America on Alexa and with close to 50 million unique visitors a month according to Compete, Craigslist is one of the few companies that appears to have worked it out. This week at the User Generated Conference in San Jose, CA, founder Craig Newmark gave us an insight into what has and what hasn’t worked for the privately held company.


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Obama Names Former Bush Aide to Review US Cybersecurity Efforts

Former Bush administration official Melissa Hathaway has been named by President Obama to lead a 60-day review of the government’s cybersecurity efforts. Hathaway was named acting Senior Director for Cyberspace for the National Security Council as well as the Homeland Security Council. While with the Bush administration she was “credited with helping to develop a multibillion-dollar classified initiative aimed at better securing federal systems and critical-infrastructure networks against online threats”.


Web Products

richrelevance: Is its Adaptive Recommender System the Next Generation?

Last week we looked at Baynote, a recommendations company that focuses on real-time community behavior instead of personalization. This week we looked at a company that takes a broader approach: richrelevance uses personalization extensively, plus the wisdom of the crowds when relevant. richrelevance claims that its approach is “adaptive AI” and that customers such as Sears and KMart are using its technology. We spoke to richrelevance founder and CEO David Selinger (ex-Amazon), to find out more about the product and what makes it different to Baynote and others.

See other posts in ReadWriteWeb’s special series on Recommendation Engines

Amazon’s Kindle Gets an Update, But Doesn’t Wow

This week Amazon announced a new version of its highly successful Kindle eBook reader. The new Kindle now features 2GB of memory, and a new 5-way controller for easier navigation. Amazon has also upgraded the screen, which can now show sixteen shades of gray instead of just four, and the battery, which now lasts about 25% longer. The old retro look of the Kindle 1 has given away to a far sleeker, more high-tech looking device, but nothing about the new Kindle is really more than an minor evolutionary step forward. Even the price ($359) has stayed the same.

Beyond Latitude: 4 Innovative Location-Based Apps

Google’s new geo-aware mobile application Latitude which lets you share your location with friends may have received all the hype, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best or the most innovative app out there. We’ve recently come across some smaller, lesser-known services that could give Google a run for their money – that is, if anyone knew they existed.

New Tweetdeck Out, Here’s What It Includes

Popular Twitter desktop app Tweetdeck released a new version this week and we’re pretty excited about what’s been added. If you’ve never used Tweetdeck, it’s the most powerful application available for sending and receiving Twitter messages. In the new version there is language translation, StockTwits integration, forwarding by email, switching to one column view and extensive support for conversation topics by hashtag. It’s quite an impressive upgrade for an already very feature-rich application.

The iPhone Becomes a Web Server

When those Apple advertisements tout “there’s an app for just about anything,” they aren’t kidding. The latest example? A new iPhone application which just debuted in Japan’s App Store transforms the handheld into a full-blown web server. Called “ServersMan@iPhone”, the application allows your iPhone to appear just like any other web server on the internet.



Kashflow vs Sage: SaaS Battles in the Tornado

If you sell SaaS, security is the big concern you have to deal with. Get past that one and you’ll draw serious attention from potential customers. Stumble on the issue and you’re in deep doo-doo. That is ever truer when money is involved. Who wants a leak in their accounting data? When a big vendor slips up with security, David is given a clear shot at Goliath. And when a market is in the “tornado” growth phase, vendors do what it takes to highlight their competitors’ weaknesses. This is the story behind the emerging battle between two UK accounting vendors, Kashflow and Sage.

Email us if you’re interested in writing for ReadWriteWeb’s Enterprise Channel.


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

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

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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