Manas Kumar, Thinking out Loud

my thoughts & visions for technology

Archive for the ‘Social Networking’ Category

Wisdom of the crowd – democracy of social networks

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Google Rocks!

I know the title of this post is a mouthful, but I was struggling to actually come up with a title that justly headlines the content of this post. I need to warn you that this is by far the most technical post I’ve ever made on my blog. I must admit, I have my reservations about this particular post. I don’t expect this to be the bumper hit like my Tips for Social Networking post last month that attracted 17,000 views within 3 hours of posting. Anyway, it’s worth a try – don’t you reckon?

Well! This post is about introducing you to a mathematical beauty that has been known to science pretty much since the days of binary. I’ll spare you the jargonificaiton – what I’m trying to get at is the mathematical explaination behind the growth of companies like Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, You Tube and LinkedIn.

It’s called the Viral Expansion Loop, something I remember studying in my Math majoring days but only recently the concept was reignited by a business contact Dave Wild, from Smith & Wild who passed me a couple of articles on Forbes and Fast Company. Dave, this post is because of you – You’ve reignited my passion in this area even though it has been inside my head all this while, albeit dormant.

Now the Viral Expansion Loop (VEL) is not the same as Viral Marketing – quite different actually, both in concept and delivery. Viral Expantion Loop is what explains how a variant of the flu virus turns from an “interesting mutation” to an epidemic and then progresses along to become a pandemic. Read the rest of this entry »

Social Media for businesses: top 10 tips

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Social media, as I have mentioned in many of my previous posts, is no longer something reserved for the teen space. Over the past 18 months, social media has grown into a phenomenon that will either have a positive or negetive impact on your business (depending on how you use it).

To understand social media, you need to first understand the transition of the world wide web. You have probably heard the term “Web 2.0” – well in reality does it mean that the internet is in it’s second version? Not quite.

It’s more like the internet has moved onto it’s next level of influence.

You see, all this while the internet has been known to be the information super-highway. You type in a question in Google and out comes the answer. Very two dimensional, very mechanical not to mention how it can be manipulated for personal gain.

Enter Web 2.0 – Now you type a question, when you find the answer, you share it with your friends – your social community. The more answers are shared, the more powerful the community. Web 2.0 has not just given birth to a new era in social interaction, but it has also opened opportunities for taking the web to one level further. Read the rest of this entry »

Sentiment Analysis for social engineering

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Sentimentality - A bunch of smileys sourced from Google Images.

Sentimentality - A bunch of smileys sourced from Google Images.

Many of my readers may find this post rather confusing but I will try my best to keep it simple.

Sentiment analysis is a very new field that has emerged out of the Semantic Web or Web 3.0 as some refer to it. You’ve heard of Web 2.0 but what is Web 3.0?

There are several high level definitions on Google for Semantic Web – but here’s my definition of the semantic web in common English.

Semantic web is a new era in the life of the world wide web where the internet is no longer used as the information super highway or the social hangout space, it will now become an intelligent medium that translates, elaborates, communicates and most importantly moderates all your social interactions with anything via the web.

Remember the popular “the Machine is using us” video put together by social anthropologist Michael Wesch? Well that described how the web has evolved from being 1 dimensional (content only) to 2 dimensional (form Vs content) and now it’s about to become 3 dimensional (form, content and MEANING). Read the rest of this entry »

Latest Facebook Traffic Statistics

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$10 to anyone who can explain the equation in this graphic. Ill pay using PayPal

$10 to anyone who can explain the equation in this graphic. I'll pay using PayPal

Found some interesting traffic stats for Facebook

General Growth
More than 250 million active users
More than 120 million users log on to Facebook at least once each day
More than two-thirds of Facebook users are outside of college
The fastest growing demographic is those 35 years old and older

    User Engagement
    Average user has 120 friends on the site
    More than 5 billion minutes are spent on Facebook each day (worldwide)
    More than 30 million users update their statuses at least once each day
    More than 8 million users become fans of Pages each day Read the rest of this entry »

    Written by manaskumar

    August 7, 2009 at 10:45 am

    Posted in Facebook, Social Networking

    Tagged with

    How to use Facebook for Viral Marketing

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    There are many ways to do that, however, in this post, I am going to specifically talk about 1 way you can build your database using nothing but Facebook.

    Facebook has something called Facebook Connect – It’s a tool available only to advanced programmers who know how to manipulate the Facebook programming architecture to connect to it’s database and pull some specific information and use it in several ways.

    Now this is not hacking. Facebook has an API (Application Programming Interface, a bridge used to connect two or more disassociated applications) that allows developers to tap into it’s database and access certain information. Facebook preserves your privacy and does not share your email address with anyone. So you have nothing to worry about.

    So here’s a simple but effective recipe to virally grow your database through Facebook using the Facebook connect API. Read the rest of this entry »

    Written by manaskumar

    August 2, 2009 at 4:46 am

    Where to next with the Twitter phenomenon?

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    Here’s something interesting.

    The United Kingdom’s Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has produced a generic Twitter strategy for all government departments, despite the risk of “criticism of jumping on the bandwagon” and “pointless content”

    Did you know?

    When people working in the Empire State Building twittered that they were craving ice cream delivery, New York local chain Tasti D Lite was there to listen and meet their need. When electronics buyers look for good deals, the Dell Outlet Twitter account helps them save money with exclusive coupons. When Houston’s coffee drinkers decide where to get their daily dose, many choose Coffee Groundz, which lets them order via Twitter.

    Is that crazy or what? Full marks to companies that are proactive in spotting such opportunities and being there at the right place at the right time. Read the rest of this entry »

    Written by manaskumar

    July 28, 2009 at 8:36 am

    7 mistakes to avoid on Twitter

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    Found this one on Google. Nice eh?

    Found this one on Google. Nice eh?

    It seems like all of a sudden, everyone is talking about Twitter.

    For businesses that find out about Twitter from a news story or an article in your favourite business magazine, there’s almost a sense of urgency about getting onto Twitter and using it for growing your business.

    How many of you know that if you find out about the latest technology through the news, then it’s already too late – everyone has already caught onto it and the “ship has left the harbour”.

    Never mind. Let’s talk about Twitter. While many businesses I know are on Twitter, but only a handful are doing it right. Read the rest of this entry »

    Written by manaskumar

    July 22, 2009 at 12:42 pm