Influential People

Last update : July 23, 2013

Social media are changing at such a pace that attracting vast numbers of likes and followers are no longer enough to stand out from the crowd. The challenge is now to identify key influential people.

Time : 100 Influential People

Time : 100 Influential People

First published in 1999, Time publishes since 2008 each year the 100 most influential people in the world (see Wikipedia). The books that inspired the Tech’s most influential people are listed on the web site Business Insider. 55 Speeches by Influential People of the 21st Century are collected on the Trendhunter web site. The 20 Most Influential People in Social Media are presented on Income Diary. Forbes published the Top 50 Social Media Power Influencers in 2013. Tom’s Hardware listed the 10 most influential people in IT of 2011. And there are more and more such lists.

Klout (The standard for Influence) aims to quantify social media presence and makes its own list of influential people. Kred Influence Measurement, or Kred, is a similar tool launched by Jodee Rich (see Wikipedia).

The following list shows links to websites with statistics about the top users of social networks :

More informations about social influence are available at the web sites listed below :

Readability Metrics

Last update : July 17, 2013

Readability metrics are used to evaluate the ease in which text can be read and understood. Legibility is a measure of how easily individual letters or characters can be distinguished from each other.

Easy reading helps learning and enjoyment. There are different ways to test the readability of texts : text leveling, vocabulary frequency lists, affixes, readability metrics. In 1948, Rudolf Flesch published his Reading Ease formula which became one of the most widely used. In 1975, in a project sponsored by the U.S. Navy, the Reading Ease formula was recalculated to give a grade-level score and is now called the Flesch–Kincaid Grade-Level formula.

Readability Metrics

Fry Graph Readability Metrics

There are other readability metrics : Dale–Chall, Gunning Fog Index, Coleman-Liau Index, McLaughlin’s SMOG Index, Fry metrics, FORCAST, …

Clear, succinct writing designed to ensure the reader understands as quickly and completely as possible is called plain language. Using excess of words is called verbosity. A list of plain English words and phrases which have been recommended in United States guides to writing is available at Wikipedia.

Readability tests are often integrated in word processing applications and blog editors. A few links to online readability calculators are listed below :

Twitter Widget

Today I created the following Twitter timeline widget and downloaded an offline archive of my Tweets for test purposes.

ThinkQuest Library

ThinkQuest is a complete online learning environment for primary and secondary schools that helps students develop important 21st century skills, including communication, critical thinking, and technology skills.

ThinkQuest includes:

  • ThinkQuest Projects: A project environment that supports collaborative learning
  • ThinkQuest Competition: Technology competitions that challenge students to solve real-world problems
  • ThinkQuest Library: The world’s largest online repository of student-developed learning projects. Featuring over 8,000 websites, the ThinkQuest Library is visited by over 30 million web learners each year.
  • ThinkQuest Professional Development: Professional development for educators

Talking Tom Cat and friends

 

Talking Tom Cat

Talking Tom Cat app

Talking Tom Cat is a free app for phones and tablets that shows a cartoon cat onscreen that repeats whatever you say into the device in a funny voice. Talking Tom Cat also responds to pokes and strokes of the screen. You can pet the cat and hear him purr. You can pour him a glass of milk and watch him drink it. Talking Tom Cat has incredible attraction for kids.

Talking Tom Cat  was created by Outfit7, a startup founded in October 2009 in Slovenia by Samo Login. The company moved its headquarters to Limassol, Cyprus in 2011. Outfit7 is known for its creation of the popular Talking Friends collection of about 20 mobile apps which have been downloaded more than 400 million times. Tom Cat is the most popular Talking Friend which has been downloaded more than 40 million times. Other characters are Gina the Giraffe, Pierre Parrot, Ben the Dog, Rex the Dinosaur, Larry the Bird, Baby Hippo, the cats Ginger and Angela and others.

In 2012 Tom Cat and his friends appeared in TV shows and music videos.

The company generates revenue through a combination of paid app downloads, in-app payments for virtual items and advertising. Tom Cat and the Talking Friends are also available as plush toys. The Talking Friend Superstars bring the apps to life and can even talk with the apps.

Language localization with Poedit

Language localization differs from translation, because it involves a comprehensive study of the target culture in order to correctly adapt the product to local needs. Poedit is a free, open source and cross-platform gettext catalog editor to aid in the process of language localization. Poedit provides compact view of data and very effective UI. Poedit is developed by Vaclav Slavik. The latest version is 1.5.5. released on February 4, 2013. The sources are available at Github.

Social music-making applications

Smule Products

A social music network, connecting users across the globe through music and enabling people to uniquely express themselves, has been created by Smule, a company founded in 2008 by Jeff Smith and Ge Wang.

The products of Smule for Apple iOS devices are :

In December 1, 2011, Smule acquired Khush, an intelligent music app developer and creator of popular apps, Songify and LaDiDa™.

On October 3, 2012, during an Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders Seminar at the Standford’s Entrepreneurship Corner, co-founders Ge Wang and Jeff Smith, shared how their passion for music and technology discovered its full voice in the founding of Smule, whose applications seek to liberate the musician in everyone. Wang emphasized how technology should enable human connection and reaction, and Smith shared insights on the mobile space and the importance of product focus.

See the video of this lecture, a Startup in Harmony.

Free Software and Open Source Software

Free software is software that gives you the user the freedom to share, study and modify it. Free software has become the foundation of a learning society where we share our knowledge in a way that others can build upon and enjoy.

GNU logo

The free software movement was started in 1983 by computer scientist Richard M. Stallman, when he launched a project called GNU, which stands for “GNU is Not UNIX”, to provide a replacement for the UNIX operating system. Then in 1985, Stallman started the Free Software Foundation, a nonprofit organization with the mission of advocating and educating on behalf of computer users around the world.

In 1998, a part of the free software community splintered off and began campaigning in the name of open source. Nearly all open source software is free software. The two terms describe almost the same category of software, but they stand for views based on fundamentally different values.

Open source is a development methodology; free software is a social movement.

Read the statement of Richard Stallman “Why Open Source misses the point of Free Software”.

SEO marketing and SERPs

Last update : June 29, 2013
SEO (Search engine optimization) is the process of improving the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s natural search results (natural = un-paid, organic, algorithmic). A SERP (search engine results page) is the listing of results returned by a search engine in response to a keyword query.

For WordPress, the leading content management system for blogs, there are number of performant plugins that make it easy to optimize your posts.

The deliberate manipulation of search engine indexes is called spamdexing. Common spamdexing techniques can be classified into two broad classes : content spam and link spam. See the related post for informations about pagerank, content farms, search quality and black hat SEO.

More informations about SEO and related topics are available at the following links :

Internet and computer slang

On Internet (websites, Twitter, chat rooms, blogs, SMS, forums ) you often find terms, acronyms or abbreviations that are not widely understood. They belong to a group of Internet and computer slang words.

Some often used slang terms are listed below :

  • AFAIK : as far as I know
  • IMO : in my opinion
  • TL;DR : too long, did’nt read

The website Internet Slang provides an Internet dictionary with more than 7.800 acronyms of the most commonly slang terms used today.