Daily Roundup for 2008-04-14

  • Yahoo’s resistance to a takeover by Microsoft looks foolhardy to some investors and Wall Street analysts. But the push-back may prove effective in the end—at least by forcing the suitor to cough up a few more bucks a share.  Executives from Yahoo (YHOO) on Apr. 7 reiterated the reasons for their opposition. The $31-a-share offer, made public Feb. 1, "substantially undervalues" Yahoo, and its stock component is even less attractive in light of Microsoft’s (MSFT) slumping share price. "We have continued to launch new products and to take actions which leverage our scale, technology, people, and platforms as we execute on the strategy we publicly articulated," Yahoo Chief Executive Jerry Yang and Chairman Roy Bostock wrote.
  • Microsoft (MSFT) just dropped the bomb on Yahoo (YHOO). Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer on Apr. 5 sent a letter giving Yahoo’s board three weeks before it initiates a proxy fight, including nomination of a new slate of directors likely to approve the deal.

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Daily Roundup for 2008-04-08

  • Is it just me or has Google gone into overdrive? As a professional full-time online marketer I have to keep my mind firmly placed on what Google is doing. As much as I try not to because Google has probably driven more people around the bend than Chrysler and Mercedes-Benz put together. Like any professional marketer, I monitor my numerous keywords on a daily basis – especially my major targeted keyword phrases that bring in the most sales and subscribers. For years now, I have had top rankings in Google for my chosen phrases; they move up and down, but mostly they don’t leave the first page.
  • Recognizing that it is not much fun to watch movies on a tiny cell phone, a number of companies are racing to develop gadgets that project what’s playing on the small screen onto walls, table cloths and other handy surfaces. ”Pico projectors” that are small enough to carry around in a shirt pocket are expected on the market later this year. Eventually, the technology will be tiny enough to be built into phones and portable media players, the companies say.

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Daily Roundup for 2008-04-07

  • Of the many blogs born last May, Patent Troll Tracker seemed as innocuous as any. Its focus: the obscure but controversial subject of "patent trolls," a derogatory term used to describe businesses that make money by purchasing patents and then suing big companies for infringement. The author was clearly no fan of the practice, but his or her identity was a mystery. The "about me" section of the blog noted that the writer was simply "a patent lawyer trying to gather and organize information about patent litigation."  Through regular, copious posts, Troll Tracker quickly drew a devoted following in patent law circles, even among those who disagreed with its point of view. What readers didn’t know, however, was that the blogger was Rick Frenkel, in-house patent counsel at Cisco Systems (CSCO), the Internet infrastructure giant.
  • Ad spending on newspaper Web sites increased to $3.2 billion in 2007, up 18.8% over 2006, according to preliminary estimates released by the Newspaper Association of America (NAA) in late March.  The trade group said that online ad spending accounted for 7.5% of all newspaper ad spending in 2007, up from 5.7% in 2006.

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Daily Roundup for 2008-04-04

  • Can fewer clicks on its search ads lead to more revenue for Google? That is the question investors, analysts, and the company itself are trying to answer. The debate was launched after a Mar. 26 report from researcher comScore (SCOR) showed a decline in the number of clicks from the prior month on Google’s search-related ads. According to the research firm, clicks on ads declined 3% in February from the prior month and were up just 3% compared to last year. Some analysts cautioned investors against buying additional Google (GOOG) shares; Google’s stock declined 3% on Mar. 27, to $444.
  • Mashups–online applications that combine data and tools from different websites–are becoming increasingly useful. Although they started out as simple consumer programs, such as a tool that placed housing listings from Craigslist onto Google Maps, mashups have grown in complexity and are becoming popular with corporations, too. As a growing number of tools are released to help people easily build mashups, experts are also taking a look at how to head off the security risks.

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Google TiSP – A FREE in-home wireless broadband service!

Google launches new services with astonishing speed, and today’s announcement is no exception.  The latest Google invention is designed to help budget in these challenging economic times.

Starting today (4/1/08), you can sign up for Google TiSP. With Google TiSP, you’ll get a speedy broadband connection for free! You can also pay extra for a faster connection.

Of course, there are a few fine print details to Google’s TiSP service. For example, you’ll need to install TiSP yourself. So read the details carefully. Obviously, you will want to understand what rights you’re giving away when you use the TiSP service.

Google’s TiSP only works with Windows. But Google promises that support for the Mac is coming soon.

Learn more about the Google TiSP (BETA), a FREE in-home wireless broadband service>>

Daily Roundup for 2008-03-08

  • The U.S. Presidential race has reached a critical juncture. The Republicans have a confirmed nominee in John McCain; as for the Democrats, Hillary Clinton has bounced back, while Barack Obama retains a marginal lead in terms of delegates. How the presidential race evolves will be shaped in part by the increasingly worrisome state of the U.S. economy. Consumer prices are rising, oil has crossed $103 a barrel and gold is nudging $1,000 an ounce — suggesting that the economy could be entering a phase of 1970s-style stagflation. Fed chairman Ben Bernanke, however, told Congress last week that he doesn’t anticipate stagflation, and he continues to indicate his willingness to keep cutting interest rates. What lies ahead for the U.S. and world economies? Knowledge@Wharton discussed these questions and more with finance professor Jeremy Siegel, author of The Future for Investors.
  • Last month I talked about blogging platforms and the value blogging can bring to ecommerce sites. When a website makes the decision to begin a blog and decides upon a blogging platform, it will then have to decide who will blog and how often. Time allotted to blogging is also a relative issue, as is subject matter. So why bother at all?  Relative to static ecommerce sites, search engines consider blogs more real and trusted because blogs tend to have fresh content and there is a less financial, more informational link between a blog and its readers. An ecommerce site should take advantage of this tendency by adding a blog to augment the overall site.

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Daily Roundup for 2008-03-01

  • Google is launching Web-based collaboration software that aims to make it easy for groups to share and edit materials such as documents, photos, video and spreadsheets on a single site. Easy enough, Google hopes, to make selling software applications to enterprises a bit harder for the likes of IBM and Microsoft.
  • It’s called "Google hacking" – a slick data-mining technique used by the Internet’s cops and crooks alike to unearth sensitive material mistakenly posted to public Web sites.  And it’s just gotten easier, thanks to a program that automates what has typically been painstaking manual labor. The program’s authors say they hope it will "screw a large Internet search engine and make the Web a safer place."

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