Reshared text: It's interesting how different the first hour's experience is with this as compared to Google Buzz. On Google Buzz I really didn't find anything well done (and that opinion hasn't found a reason to change since). But on here? Nearly everything is well done. I haven't yet seen something "magical" that goes way beyond, but everything solid here and that is different than the last few things I've seen Google try with Social.
What do I mean by that? Well, can you tell Google+ to do something like these actions:
* Remove all items with posts in them. (I might only want to see real status messages, without the pollution of people pimping their blogs or other info outside of G+). * Remove all items with videos in them. (There should be a separate tab for those, just like there is for photos). * Show me only items with at least five +1's. (That would show me only popular items). * Show me only items from people with at least 100 followers. (That should show me items from only popular people). * Show me only items that have been +1'd by a certain group, like my tech press group (this would show me only items that were popular with a group). * Show me only items that have been shared from Mountain View (if a plane crashed in Mountain View this morning, that would let me limit news items to people who have a high liklihood of actually being a witness to the event).
2. There isn't a strong affordance for what it's for, after you've built your social graph. Here's some things I'm thinking about:
* A lot of people are posting photos of their kids. Does that mean it's going to be used like Facebook, where it's friends and family sharing funny moments in their lives? * Other people are pimping their blogs. Does that mean it will be used like Twitter, as a way to promote things you're interested in, or that you've produced?
To fix this, I wish Google+ gave readers a role to play here. Imagine if we could play a little "curation game" and help put things in various buckets. IE, why can't we tag other people's items with what kind of items they actually are?
In other words, can I mark your kids' photos as belonging to the "cute kids photos" bucket? That would let people who don't care about kids photos filter them out, which would make the news feed dramatically more useful for everyone!
Same for "tech news bucket." People like me would religiously read that bucket, but other people would say "meh" and would be able to filter those out of their feed.
Same for "photos of personal items." I just saw a photo of someone's Mercedes. That's totally noise to me, but maybe someone really loves those photos. Well, let me play a game (give me points for doing good curation!) and let me help make everyone else's feed better! Plus, this will help people see a stronger affordance for what G+ actually is for.
3. I want to add typographical hints. Look at how Quora lets me bold text, or break it out. Much nicer than G+.
Is it to just get followers? Is it to collect the most comments or +1s? That seems to be the major game here.
It's clear Google didn't think out what kind of game they wanted us to play here (and if you don't think Facebook, Twitter, Quora are games, you really haven't done advanced thinking of social behavior).
For instance, if Google+ is going to be about posting your cute kids photos, who can post the BEST cute kids photo out there? If you do that, do you win some sort of badge or recognition from the community?
Here's another way to look at it. Over on Quora if I put the best answer in the wine topic, my answer shows up on the top of that question. It rewards me for putting effort into my answer. But here every answer is treated the same. Worse, the ones that "stick out" are those that have lots of +1s. Let's talk about what that means to the game here:
If the only game to play here is to get +1s, well, then, we'll do more content that gets more +1s. You'll see more bombastic content (that gets engagement and fans will +1). You'll see more celebrity content (Steve Jobs and Ashton Kutcher will get +1s on their content just because of who they are). You'll see more content pandering to the masses (the masses are asses) and less content pandering to the few. Remember, my iPhone 4 photo was viewed 300,000 times. So, if I am pandering to the +1 game, I will post more Apple news here, and less stuff about something that you really need to know. Big Macs outsell brussels sprouts.
For the next major version, I'm hoping Google really hires some superstar gamification people and think through this question in a much deeper way: What is the game Google wants us to play here?
I wish Google+ had the ability to start a food fight. You know, are you Android or iOS kind of thing? Imagine you had polls, or, even better, two side-by-side streams. One stream is for people who are iOS fans. The other stream is for Android fans.
RESHARE: I argued with Maryam for 45 minutes before she finally gave in and posted this to Google+. It's amazingly difficult to get people who are addicted to Facebook to come here. Are you finding the same?
I really want to love my new Google Chrome Samsung Book, but the trackpad does suck. It thinks I'm right clicking when I'm not and is hardly what I'd call responsive. Drat, everything else about it is cute and nice.
It's too bad that Google didn't let us mix our interest graphs with our social graphs. What do I mean by that?
Well, quick, find a way to build a circle where you will ONLY see friends of yours talking about Skiing, for instance. Not possible to build in Google+ yet.
Skiing is the interest graph. Friends are the social graph.
Google+ has nailed the social graph part of this, but doesn't even try to do interest graph (well, except for "Sparks" but they aren't for stuff being shared inside Google+ yet).
I'm looking forward to seeing what Google does to mix Google Groups (interest graph) into Google+ (social graph).
This is why I say I wish Google+ got in bed with Quora and made a baby. Quora is mostly about interest graph, while Google+ is mostly about social graph.
By the way, this is also what I mean when I say that Google+ has poor noise control. If you can't find items you want based on your interest graph then you can't get rid of items you don't want (say my cute baby photos).
RESHARE: Cool, Google is working on the "Scoble virus" problem. See Kelly's note here.
Reshared text: Pro tip. Right now your stream is ordered by most-recent comment. We're working hard on improving this, but in the mean time, if you're tired of seeing the same post come up near the top of your stream, you can click on the little arrow and select "Mute this post." This is useful for those Scoble updates...
By far the worst new feature is "share." It is causing a HUGE amount of duplication noise. Why didn't Google+ team look at the new Twitter retweet? That does NOT cause duplication noise as people push an item to their followers.
Who are the best developers hanging out here and how would you prove that? Feel free to pimp yourself. I'll nominate +Andy Hertzfeld who was Apple's first software developer and helped do a lot of the cool stuff here. Many of the people I respect in Silicon Valley say he's the best programmer alive. Who would you nominate?
RESHARE: Why popping items to the top of your feed is good (content producers get their best (or worst) stuff seen more often and engaged on for a longer time. See Edd's note here:
Reshared text: I can't verify this for sure, but it seems to me that posts on Google+ have a longer lifespan. I'm still getting comment and engagement on a post half a day to a day later. I never experience this on Twitter, which suffers from a steep tail-off after initial interest.
I would guess this is a side effect of the promotion that happens to a post every time it is commented on.
RESHARE: Awesome to see fast iteration by the Google+ team!
Reshared text: The sharing changes +Kelly Ellis mentioned earlier today are starting to roll out:
1) The next time you share something, you'll see a dialog explaining how to edit or delete your post, or disable comments or reshares.
2) When you try to share a limited post, you'll see a friendly reminder to be thoughtful about who you're sharing with.
3) You can't share limited posts publicly. (You can still share limited posts with other individuals and circles.)
And just to reiterate: as the author you always have the option of disabling reshares entirely on a given post. Just click the triangle menu at the top right of your post, and select "Disable reshare."
To the people who say I follow too many people. I say hogwash for two reasons. One, I use circles, most of which only have a few people in them. They are very followable. Two, my home feed is a lot of fun to watch and engage with and I can see patterns other people simply are not able to see (which is why I see the noise problem here in higher resolution than anyone else).
The Google+ mobile experience on web is quite nice. I am using Google+ this weekend exclusively this weekend on Safari on iPhone. Yes, it is missing lots like I dont see a way to upload photos. But the UI and your posts are great looking.
I still like Twitter more on mobile. Why? Speed. Tweets come over mobile much faster than G+ posts over web. Part of that will be fixed when a native app and API ship. Hopefully soon!
This week I will be using G+ on Android, which is a lot better.
Only one thing really sucks so far: I can't figure out how to scroll to the top of my stream. They broke Apple's UI of clicking on top menu to do that.
Well done first effort, though. Can't wait for the app!
How popular is Google+? Well, in less than a week I will have more followers here than I have on Facebook despite being on Facebook for more than three years. Wow. Not sure what that means, but here's some theories.
1. Google+ is far more popular with geeks than Facebook is. 2. I have a "tribe" of folks who follow me on Twitter, but won't follow me to Facebook, but will follow me here and on Quora (I have more followers there, too). 3. Something about Google+ makes me more discoverable here than on Facebook (I wonder if I'm popping up on everyone's suggested users list here, where on Facebook I'm not).
The question is, will this be like Quora (growth has slowed there. Most of my followers there happened in late December and January) or will it continue to see growth over time? (My gut instinct is that growth here will die down until Google releases another set of features. Of course, it seems like Google is iterating faster than Quora or other social networks).
Some other notes:
1. I'm getting more engagement here than anywhere else. 2. The team and execs at Google are far more active here than any other exec team in social media. I've seen all sorts of Googlers hang out and comment on a wide variety of posts and show up in all sorts of video hangouts. When has an exec at Twitter or Facebook done that in a very public way? I can't remember. 3. I think this shows that Google has tapped into some existing boredom of a group of people who haven't been served by other social networks. 4. The speed of notifications and new items here doesn't match Twitter, yet, but blows away Facebook's speed, even adjusting for the numbers of people I'm following (and, if I adjust for Twitter's numbers -- I'm following 32,000 there -- I think that per user we're seeing more posts here than there).
Anyway you look at this I think the first five days of Google+ have been quite successful. Can't wait to see the next five! (I'll be using an Android phone to post live updates from the Shuttle launch and will be visiting Bill Gross' Idealab to get his thoughts on Google+ too).
Thanks for following and this is a fun experiment to be part of together.
Today as I drove through Napa I was thinking about "what is freedom?" After all, the Fourth of July is a good time to think about that (USA's birthday is July 4th).
Freedom is the ability to do what you want without worrying about what other people think. My friend +Jesse Stay has written about religious persecution (he's a Mormon, an organization that has faced its share of such) and I am glad me and him have the ability to believe any damn thing we want without facing too much persecution.
It is freedom to love whoever you want. In some countries my wife would be stoned to death for hanging out with a geek like me (she grew up in Tehran, Iran, and it isn't a very good decision to marry outside of their state-sponsored religion).
I'm so excited that some of my friends in the tech press have gotten new freedoms in the past year thanks to New York lawmakers who had guts to stand up for freedom.
It is the freedom to work for who you want (or, even, work for yourself!) In lots of places in the world there are many people who don't have that freedom.
It is the freedom to be able to say our President is a butthead and not face state-sponsored consequences. My wife's family moved her here after she was threatened by military personel in Iran for simply laughing. "Why are you laughing in a time of war?" they asked her.
It is the freedom for you to vote for someone I think is an idiot (and the freedom to be able to state such here on Google+). I'd die to protect that freedom, because that means I can vote for an idiot too.
It is the freedom to decide whether or not to serve your country. Nearly every day I pass by this memorial grounds and thank my lucky stars I never was forced into making the ultimate sacrifice for my country and I revere those who DO make that choice (my brothers both served and so did my dad).
Anyway, I keep worrying about my country. It is pretty damn messed up and some of our freedoms have been taken away (just try to fly on a plane and go through a TSA line to see a very clear example of that) but after driving through Napa today I was just very thankful that I had the freedom to visit one of the best wine regions in the world.
Thank you to everyone who has helped protect my freedoms. Happy birthday America.
If I put a photo into Google+ it is always my own photos, UNLESS I give a photo credit.
One thing you might not know: I've donated all my photos at http://flickr.com/scobleizer to the public domain. This means you can use them anytime without giving me credit or giving me compensation or without asking me for permission to reprint them. This is even true of my "famous" photos. For instance, I have photos of John Edwards and his mistress which have been used all over the world in professional press and on CNN.
Why do I do that? Because I love sharing and hope more people share their work that way.
That said, if you give me credit, I greatly appreciate it.
Bug report: Um, I blocked someone and I still see him show up on other people's comments. So, in effect, block doesn't work here and that's a bug. Yes, I'm sending that to "Send feedback." But I thought you should know, just in case you expect never to see someone you block here again.
Even with all of its noise, Google+'s feed is 600x more interesting than my Google Buzz feed. Why? No Tweets. All organically added stuff.
It's also interesting that in six days I've gotten more followers here than I ever got on Google Buzz. That's just totally amazing to me and shows that this is resonating with people in a way that Google Buzz never did.
Is anyone else seeing this? Google+ sometimes removes me from following someone that I know I already followed. This has happened dozens of times now, so I think it's a bug but I haven't figured out a pattern to it. Anyone else seeing this problem?
Myself, I think Yishan got close to something deeply wrong here, but he got lost in the privacy weeds.
The real problem? Noise control. Facebook does noise control much better than Google+ does and until Google+ figures out how to do noise control most average users will try this for a while to see what the hype is about and then leave when they don't see anything interesting to them.
The thing is Google has nailed almost everything else, so many first users aren't getting what either I nor Yishan are talking about. That's what I mean by the "new car smell here is very strong."
When that wears off, I will be interested in seeing what happens to engagement numbers (average time spent on site, etc) and viral coefficients (how many people each user pulls in every month).
One thing Yishan isn't including in his analysis is that Google can fix many of these problems very quickly by incorporating both authority ranking like what Quora has as well as newsfeed features so we can filter the feeds.
It's funny that Gmail has awesome filters, but Google+ hasn't included them yet. When they do it'll be interesting to see Yishan's thoughts then.
It's all about noise control. That's where most of the innovation is gonna be over next few years and whoever does it better wins and wins big.
Exclusive to Google +: first look at Dudamobile. Everyone is complaining that Google+'ers are only talking about Google+. So, for the next few hours I won't post this on Twitter or Facebook or my blog. What is it? First look at Dudamobile, a really cool service that makes building mobile websites very easy. Oh, and yeah, you'll see some comments from folks hanging out on a Google+ hangout. :-)
RESHARE: I'm sitting with Bill Gross, founder of IdeaLab. You might know him as the guy who runs UberMedia, a whole group of Twitter clients. He's very excited by Google+. He's someone you should follow and tell him what you think of Google+ and where he should take his client family next. ;-)
Reshared text: "Last night a chat room changed my life" Jenna Wortham of the New York Times
RESHARE: I used to autofollow on Twitter (I don't anymore, three years ago I deleted everyone I was following and started over) and it was the stupidest thing I ever did. Now when I follow you you know I'm actually interested in you and I actually -- at minimum -- clicked the follow button.
Same thing here. While I follow large numbers (I follow lots of early adopters and geeks to see patterns) everyone I'm following here I'm interested in engaging with. No spammers, and my home feed is very interesting to me.
Ask yourself, would you rather be followed by a robot? Or a human being?
Reshared text: When people follow you, do you follow back? Some thoughts (some of which came from you HERE on Google+) - http://ow.ly/5xMiC
I'm on my way to Florida today to see the last Space Shuttle launch. This photo is one that +Rocky Barbanica (my producer) took at STS-133. I'll be hanging out with a ton of great people, including the awesome photographer +Trey Ratcliff (you should check out his feed) at the NASA Tweetup (which happens Thursday and Friday). On Saturday I'm getting a tour of Walt Disney World (unless the Shuttle launch gets delayed, which is very possible).
I'll be posting photos and videos from there, and am really looking forward to a magical week. That said, you'll notice I'm a lot quieter here this week than I was last week. Now you know why.
When I was in Junior High, my dad took us to a family science day at NASA Ames in Mountain View. He worked at Lockheed, which was right next door, so they did joint family days. I remember at one place a scientist was talking about this super new material that could protect against high heat. He asked me "would you like to hold a piece of hot history?" Of course I said yes. He had an oven that could heat things up to thousands of degrees. He said "carefully hold it by the corners."
It was glowing red it was so hot.
But it didn't burn my hands.
Of course he was letting me hold one of the tiles of material that would eventually protect the space shuttle. It was that day that I fell in love with geeks who make stuff and in love with the Shuttle program itself.
I've gotten close to seeing a launch. This will be my second visit to Cape Canaveral. The previous visit fell short, as the Shuttle's launch that year (back in 2002, if I remember right) was delayed several days due to weather. But I always wanted to see a launch. This week is looking no less lucky. Weather reports are saying that there's only a 30% chance that it will go off on Friday. Either way, tonight I'm giddy and can't sleep.
It is a weird world, when the Shuttle first launched in 1981 Mark Zuckerberg had not yet been born. I was lucky enough to be alive when the space program first got to the moon. Some of my earliest memories are of sitting around a TV with my parents watching as Buzz Aldrin and team walked the surface of the moon the first time.
In other words, NASA has inspired me with images and video my entire life.
Tomorrow I will be getting a pretty damn exclusive tour. Not many NASA employees get this treatment (see the agenda below). I will try my best to bring Google+ exclusive content and bring you along. Yeah, this is called a Tweetup, but I can't Tweet as much stuff as I'm hoping to over the next few days.
Why do it?
Because I am living out a childhood dream in a way few humans will get the chance to do. Millions are expected to look to the sky and say goodbye to the Shuttle on Friday. But millions more are like me. Just a boy who was asked to dream big dreams and hold a piece of hot history in his hands.
So, come and dream with me and help me congratulate all the people who've worked on this program for years for a job well done.
9:00 a.m. – Welcome by @NASA team member John Yembrick 9:05 a.m. – Meet the tweeps 10:00 a.m. – Break 10:30 a.m. – Bill Gerstenmaier, associate administrator for Space Operations Mission Directorate, NASA Headquarters (NASA TV starts http://www.ustream.tv/nasatelevision) 10:50 a.m. – Elmo, Sesame Street (@SesameStreet) interacts with STS-109 and STS-125 Astronaut Mike Massimino (@Astro_Mike) 11:10 a.m. – Massimino answers questions from the participants 11:30 a.m. – Tracy Thumm (@ISS_Research) and Justin Kuglerm (@ISS_NatLab), International Space Station Program, NASA's Johnson Space Center
11:50 a.m. – Angie Brewer, space shuttle Atlantis' flow director, Kennedy Space Center
12:10 p.m. – Conclusion
12:15 p.m. – Lunch break (on your own or a visit to the cafeteria)
12:15 p.m. -- Elsie Wiegel and Trent Perrotto escort tweeps to the cafeteria 12:20 p.m. -- Beth Beck and Sarah DeWitt escort tweeps to the cafeteria 12:25 p.m. -- Jason Townsend and Samone Faulkner escort tweeps to the cafeteria 1:15 p.m. – Board buses for Launch Pad 39A to view the retraction of the Rotating Service Structure at 2 p.m. You may get on any of the four buses to begin with but then need to remain on the same bus throughout the afternoon. Please check in with your Tweetup leader each time you board the bus. 3:15 p.m. – Tour of NASA's Kennedy Space Center, including visits to the Apollo Saturn V Center and the Vehicle Assembly Building and a drive by the Launch Control Center, Mobile Launch Platform and Orbiter Processing Facility. 6:00 p.m. – Return to the press site
RESHARE: Good set of people to follow if you don't have any friends here yet. Put them in a circle so you can delete them later if they get too noisy or your real friends show up and you get tired of them (I'm one of them).
Reshared text: Lots of new people joining Google+, so I figure now is a good time to update my list of follow recommendations! Add some (or all) of these public(ish) figures to your Following circle, and Google+ won't feel so much like a ghost town. (Please note: The following people may work for certain companies, but that does not mean they will always post about those companies. It certainly doesn't mean that they speak for those companies in any way at all - unless, of course, they do.)
For everyone who SHOULD be on this list but isn't, I'm sorry if I forgot you! Some of you I probably haven't found yet, others just slipped my mind. If you know of other interesting or helpful people who aren't on this list but should be, please add them in the comments below. All contributions are welcome!
I shared this video with ONLY Google+ yesterday morning. So far it's been viewed 979 times.
I think I'll be doing this more soon! Maybe even tonight.
By the way, my average video, after getting posted to my blog, my Twitter account (190,000 followers) and my Facebook account, usually only gets a few thousand views. On a good day 10,000. So, the traffic that Google+ is bringing content producers is pretty damn special already.
This one is with Solidfire who are bringing screaming fast solid state servers to datacenters. Why is this important? Well, datacenters built with their technology will be much faster than others. That means cloud computing systems will be able to have a lot more features. Definitely something a datacenter wonk like me is gonna wanna keep up to date on.
Heh. I unblocked a bunch of people I had blocked over on Google Buzz for trolling and being jerks. One guy already started trolling and being a jerk. Blocked again! Some people just can't help themselves, I guess. But you are in charge of who engages with you here and my time on earth is too short to put up with jerks.
I'm at the NASAtweetup. The wifi is rocking. Steve Wozniak is here along with 200 great people from around the world. More to come, NASA will be streaming live video shortly, watch the https://twitter.com/#!/nasatweetup account for more info.
I felt quite a bit of emotion while driving toward this building this morning. We're gonna get a tour shortly and learn what happens inside.
eBay just bought Zong for $240 million in cash. Here's the press release (something else I can't do on Twitter).
SAN JOSE and MENLO PARK, Calif. – July 7, 2011 – eBay Inc. (NASDAQ: EBAY) announced today that it has agreed to acquire Zong, a leading provider of payments through mobile carrier billing, for total consideration of approximately $240 million in cash. Zong leverages connections with more than 250 mobile network operators around the world, offering localized, secure and easy-to-use payments capabilities for digital goods and services in 21 languages and 45 countries. Combined with PayPal’s leading global payment platform serving 100 million active accounts worldwide, the company expects that Zong will add complementary technology and talent that helps strengthen PayPal’s leadership position in mobile payments and digital goods.
Zong allows consumers to easily pay for purchases from their mobile phones or computers through direct carrier billing. Consumers simply enter their mobile phone numbers. Then, in a matter of seconds, Zong verifies that number and clears the payment on the customer’s existing wireless service account.
With Zong, PayPal will have greater ability to offer consumers even more choices in how they want to pay – virtually anytime, anywhere. Both Zong and PayPal help to enable digital goods merchants to increase conversion, because they offer a faster, easier way for consumers to pay without leaving the merchant’s site. “Commerce is changing. With mobile phones, we walk around with a mall in our pockets. PayPal helps to make money work better for customers in this new commerce reality – no matter how they want to pay or what device they’re using,” said Scott Thompson, president of PayPal. “We believe that Zong will strengthen this value by helping us reach the more than 4 billion people who have mobile phones, giving them more choice and security when they pay.”
“Our customers love the convenience of paying with their mobile numbers – a number they know by heart, and a device that they always have with them,” said David Marcus, CEO of Zong. “We look forward to extending our services to PayPal’s more than 9 million merchants around the world. And we’re committed to working with carriers and merchants to help them drive more sales across devices.”
PayPal is an industry leader in mobile payments and digital goods. PayPal expects to transact more than $3 billion in mobile payments in 2011. Currently, more than 8 million customers are making purchases on their mobile phones through PayPal, driving up to $10 million in mobile payments per day. PayPal offers Mobile Express Checkout for merchants, PayPal Mobile Payments Library for developers, PayPal payment apps for iPhone, Android, Nokia and Blackberry, and location-based shopping with Where.
Earlier this year, PayPal launched PayPal for Digital Goods, a new product that lets buyers pay in two clicks without leaving their gaming experience or content site. In 2010, PayPal processed $3.4 billion in payments for digital goods.
eBay Inc. does not expect the acquisition of Zong to have a material impact on its financial guidance as issued in conjunction with its first quarter earnings release on April 27, 2011. The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approval, and is expected to close in the third quarter of 2011.
About eBay Inc. Founded in 1995 in San Jose, Calif., eBay Inc. (NASDAQ:EBAY) connects millions of buyers and sellers globally on a daily basis through eBay, the world’s largest online marketplace, and PayPal, which enables individuals and businesses to securely, easily and quickly send and receive online payments. We also reach millions through specialized marketplaces such as StubHub, the world’s largest ticket marketplace, and eBay classifieds sites, which together have a presence in more than 1,000 cities around the world. For more information about the company and its global portfolio of online brands, visit www.ebayinc.com.
About PayPal PayPal is the faster, safer way to pay and get paid online. The service allows members to send money without sharing financial information, with the flexibility to pay using their account balances, bank accounts, credit cards or promotional financing. With 100 million active accounts in 190 markets and 25 currencies around the world, PayPal enables global commerce. PayPal is an eBay (Nasdaq:EBAY) company. PayPal is headquartered in San Jose, Calif. and its international headquarters is located in Singapore. More information about the company can be found at PayPal.com.
About Zong Zong is a leading mobile payments platform for sellers of digital goods and services. Zong leverages direct connections with mobile network operators around the world to provide a secure payment solution with best-in-class connectivity and service quality. Zong is a mobile payment provider for Facebook Credits and is also accepted at over a thousand digital merchant sites. Reaching 3.2 billion mobile users through over 250 carrier connections, Zong provides localized payment capabilities in 21 languages and 45 countries. Zong is based in Menlo Park with offices in Geneva, Paris and Dusseldorf, and is backed by Matrix Partners, Advent Venture Partners and Newbury Ventures. For more information, please visit www.zong.com.
Forward-Looking Statements This announcement contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, and actual results could differ materially from those discussed. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include, but are not limited to, the receipt and timing of regulatory approval for the transaction, the possibility that the transaction may not close, the reaction to the transaction of Zong’s customers and merchant and carrier partners, PayPal’s plans for Zong, the future growth of Zong’s and PayPal’s businesses, the reaction of competitors to the transaction and the possibility that integration following the transaction may be more difficult than expected. More information about potential factors which could affect our business and results is included in eBay's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2010, its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, its Current Reports on Form 8-K, and other periodic filings. All forward-looking statements are based on information available to eBay on the date hereof, and eBay assumes no obligation to update such statements.
Reshared text: People who whargarble about NASA's pitiful budget need a reality check. We saw a highly trained team with a few helicopters and a box of bullets do what the world's most powerful military couldn't manage in a decade.
That's no criticism of the people--they did their jobs as well as they could. But we know now, with plenty of evidence, that high technology and specialists are better for much of what our military is built to do.
The next time your representatives talk about building a billion-dollar plane, ask if it would be better spent on the tech and science that benefits every sector of the economy, from military to IT.
The US is the richest country in the world in talent and technology. We can afford to send robots to space, colonize other worlds, find new ones, and protect ourselves inexpensively. Space vs. military vs. big global problems is not a choice we need to make if we handle them intelligently.
Happy Birthday +Trey Ratcliff Here's an audio interview I did with him a few minutes ago at the NASATweetup. He tells me about getting a chance to set up cameras right next to the Space Shuttle this morning. By the way, it's Trey's 40th birthday. I think that deserves a +1. Anyway, he's a great photographer and I'm looking to learn a lot from him over the next couple of days: http://cinch.fm/scobleizer/254647 <<-- listen to the audio.
You have seen +Trey Ratcliff 's photo this morning of the Countdown Clock at the Kennedy Space Center. Here's that same clock right now. It is POURING and thundering. They won't let us out of the tent, either, due to lightening threat.
NBC's cameraman Jim Long dropped by and he doesn't think the Shuttle will launch tomorrow. It's looking less and less likely.
The Space Shuttle launch is still on, although over the next four hours there's still a 70% chance that the launch will be delayed until tomorrow due to weather. Here's the astronauts as they drove by the Tweetup Participants.
RESHARE: Trey is the man! Join him live and talk about some great photos.
Reshared text: Join me for a LIVE video hangout today from the Space Shuttle Launch at exactly 11:15 AM EST. I'll be broadcasting live from my laptop, which will be set up behind my tripod, as close as security allows to the shuttle itself.
I like this photo of +Trey Ratcliff before he shot the Space Shuttle launch. He is about to go collect his other cameras, which are still sitting right next to the launch pad (three miles away over Trey's right shoulder). I can't wait to see what he gets. He is holding off posting anything, says "I only can upload one photo and it has to be the best. People don't follow me for speed." Absolutely right! They make photographers wait two to three hours before they can go collect their cameras, so we'll be waiting a few hours for that really awesome shot.
I'm going to be joining Gillmor Gang in 20 minutes from Kennedy Space Center at http://www.building43.com/realtime/ Join us (and share this with your geeky friends) at 1:05. Live geek chat. I will be joining via Facetime, so I can't join the live chat, but it should be fun, hope to give you an interesting tour around Kennedy Space Center.
My wife deleted her Google+ account. Why? She was getting too many inbound requests, and saw too much noise here and not enough signal. She also says that the engagement I drew to her was too much, too quickly.
Those who say that Google+ is going to beat Facebook are just not facing this reality. For many Facebook is better than Google+.
I will be honest, I would block myself on Google+ like Techcrunch's guest commented just did http://t.co/Wiy7Azl but just wait until the brands get here. Think Redbull isn't going to cause conversation storms or Disney?
I am at Disneyworld hanging out with geeks and doing audio interviews. Here is one with an app developer http://icin.ch/5H9Nc Now onto Epcot. Be there shortly. More interviews to come like this one with Disney expert Lou Mongello: http://icin.ch/5H7Vc
RESHARE: If +Rakesh Agrawal actually did block me, why am I allowed to see his posts and share them with other people? By the way, blocking seems to be a pretty harsh way to hack around Google's bugs (and it IS a bug for Google to keep suggesting people they don't want to see suggested) because, if block actually worked well, would keep me from sharing with other people.
Since I have 30,000 followers here I'm sure Rakesh won't mind getting more eyes on his work and I certainly know Techcrunch likes the additional visits to work published there (they make money everytime someone reads a Techcrunch page).