Webometric Thoughts

May 9, 2009

What comes after the business card?

Filed under: business cards,moo cards — admin @ 9:09 am

I have reached a point in my life when I should get some sort of business card. A lot of my time is spent ‘networking’, and telling people to “just google me” isn’t very professional (especially as I may not appear until page 5 or 6 of the results). However, the business card is a flawed technology in an age when the ways you are contacted are constantly changing. Surely there is an alternative to passing around little bits of card with all our details on.

Unfortunately the business card is actually having a resurgence. Moo cards are now considered the essential accessory for anyone involved in the creative industries or social media. In fact this blog post is in response to the arrival of my girlfriend’s moo cards this morning (to go with her new web site):

The main reason for the continuing success of the business card is the seeming lack of an alternative universal technological solution. If I want to share my details via bluetooth or sms, or in a QR code, or using RFID, I rely on the recipient both having necessary device and being able to use it; whilst mobile phones increasingly include the necessary technology, this isn’t being accompanied by the necessary knowledge. There is also element of acknowledgement in the business card. People have a limited number of business cards, and have to select who is going to get a card, and who is not going to get a card.

For a lot of people, however, the web may be considered a universal technology; those without Internet access are unlikely to be getting one of my business cards anyway. Therefore all we actually need to do is find a way of sharing a URL rather than all our contact details…which suddenly opens up a whole host of different alternatives to business cards, especially as they don’t have to exist once the recipent has accessed the web.

However finding interesting ways to share your details can will be a bit of a balancing act. Do you really want to be able to contact me or are you just wanting to eat my chocolate?

May 8, 2009

Google Trends: Where is the API?

Filed under: Google Trends — admin @ 12:49 pm

I rarely use Google Trends, prefering instead the advanced features of Google Insights for Search. I returned to the site, however, as Google announced a Google Trends Widget.

Whilst interesting, it’s a far cry from the Application Programming Interface we were assured was coming back in 2007!

I often get annoyed at the state of APIs (e.g., here and here), but to promise an API and then 18 months later roll out a crappy little widget is just annoying.

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