December 09, 2006
What If Bob Lefsetz Ranted on Web 2.0I love Bob Lefsetz and his Lefsetz Letter. It's some of the best, most consistently amusing and interesting writing on the Net. He's insane, and his ravings on the music industry are brilliant, incisive, hilarious, outrageous, offensive, and often true. I particularly love it when he tears the music sales charts to shreds, like he does here and here, for starters.
What if Bob took a turn ranting about Web 2.0 like he does the sales charts?
Perhaps it might look like this:
December 08, 2006
A Cry of Help, or, The Recommendation Engine That Couldn'tOver the years, Netflix has given me a hard time. Probably because I've likewise given the Netflix site a hard time, by rating vast swaths of films, clicking away with glee on literally thousands of "Not Interested" buttons hoping against hope that the system would one day wake up and realize I don't have any interest in the television category, the sports category, kids cartoons category, and on and on. Now, my Netflix account looks like this:
20,133 ratings, 209 items in my queue, and Netflix still can't think of anything to recommend to me . . . except a single movie. One measly title. Out of how many tens of thousands, probably close to or exceeding 100,000 titles, just one. For me. All Netflix can do is find a SINGLE movie to recommend to me. Think about it. I've fed its recommendation engine enough information that it ought to be able to write a disseration and get a Ph.D. not to mention recommend to me every movie I would like and every movie I wouldn't, for the rest of time. Netflix should be an absolute friggin' expert on me by now.
So, you can imagine I was quite curious to see which movie, which SINGLE FILM, in the entire vast infinite library that is Netflix, it was going to recommend me based on my 20,133 ratings and the 209 films I had selected to place in my queue.
With a mixture of great trepidation, excitement, and curiosity, I clicked on the "1 Recommendation" link.
Here is what I found:
As Charlie Brown would say, "good grief."
Of course, I couldn't resist, and clicked "Not interested". And how did Netflix respond?
It now has 0 recommendations for me.
Seymour PapertBest wishes for a speedy recovery to Seymour Papert, who, it was reported this week, was severly injured in a traffic accident in Hanoi where he was attending an international conference. Here's a more detailed news report.
San Diego News10 coverage of Eventful
More details here...
December 06, 2006
Filo or Audience?Paul Kedrosky thinks the big deal about the Yahoo reorg press release is its lack of mention of Dave Filo.
I disagree. I think the big deal is the the 11 mentions of the word "audience" (singular or plural). It's significant that Yahoo thinks of its user community as an audience -- particularly in the web 2.0 age. Audiences receive. Audiences are broadcasted to. Audiences usually do not participate.
The shift of focus from "community" to "audience" is a change that makes me wonder what Yahoo is going to morph into. More video and audio, I bet. After all, that's what audiences do. Watch and listen.
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