Tim O’Reilly had an interesting thought in his weblog:all software should be network aware. All software on your computer should be able to talk with the networks, either as Client or as Server (source or sink). This will certainly be an interesting development and can have far-reaching consequences. Already some possibilities do exist with WebDAV, P2P-networks and Apple’s Rendez-Vous standard. Good development of this field al depends on the use of open standards, so that all software can talk to each other.
Very interesting, need some time to chew on this.
Yesterday I added a commenting service to the Blueblog. This commenting service is offered by Haloscan.com. I do not know whether this is the best Service Provider, but it is a good first try.
The Commenting service allows readers to add comments to postings I make on the Blueblog. A comment consists of a reader name, an email address, an URL and the comments. The comments can be seen under the the Blueblog postings as a short line “Comments (6)”, in case there are 6 comments. Clicking on comments brings the reader to a special comments page. This page can be tweaked by me, by changing a css-file. As an owner of the Blueblog and the comments, I am able to delete comments, which I do not want to be there.
Of course this Comments-service, is also interesting from an Online Service perspective. I, as owner (and Service Provider) of the Blueblog offer now a commenting-service to the readers of the Bueblog. This service is a Communications Tele-Service, as it allows readers and me to communicate. It is a Store&Forward Communications Tele-Service, as the communication is first stored and then read later. More specifically it is a Discussion Store&Forward Communication Tele-Service, as it allows discussion (not a good word) between multiple users. The discussion presents itself as a linear thread around a single post in the blog. Probably I will be able to subdivide further, but I will figure that out later.
The Service Provider (Haloscan.com) offers owners of Weblogs a facility to add a commenting-service to their weblog. This is an Enabling Service. You can call this a Discussion Store&Forward Communication Teleservice Enabling Service.
Finally I discovered the RSS-standard. I was willing to check it out for a long time, but I only found the time recently. RSS allows authors to publish information in a standard way based on XML (I guess?). These RSS-files can subsequently be picked by publishers to paste it in their website.
Another possibility is to use an RSS Aggregator client (I use NetNewsWire created by Ranchero Software) to view these RSS-files. It is very similar to Usenet-viewers: you subscribe to certain RSS_files (feeds) and the software checks whether new items have been published. You see in your client that you have not yet read them.
Is this interesting?
- No, because it is very similar to Usenet. It does not seem very innovative. It is just a file, which the end-user can grab through the HTTP-protocol and do with it whatever he wants;
- Yes, it is very interesting (I bought my client), because it is a very convenient way to check news, blogs, etc. You do not have to check out each website to see whether something is new or not. The client aggregates everything into a single viewer, thus within one view you can see all the news. In this sense it does remind me again of Usenet, which I found much more useful than the Web until the onset of spam in the Usenet-groups.
But is it interesting from an Online Services point of view? It belongs to the category Publishing. As end-users can read the RSS-files, it belongs to the Tele-Publishing category. If you however use a RSS_file to add content to your web-page, then your re-using content (syndication) and the service belongs to the Enabling Category, subcategory Publishing Tele-Services. Probably a specific subcategory should be created due to the standard that has been used behind the service.
By the way I found already an annoying item in the use of RSS. Some authors only publish the header and the first sentence of a news-item. If you want to read the story you have to go to the web-site anyway. I rather see the news right away, but I understand why they do it (view the ads).
Well so much for first impressions. Now I have to read up on this subject to see whether there is more to it. Also I want to know what all the fuss is about the standards.
Google just released a new toolbar (still in beta) for WorldWideWeb-browsers. One of the new features is the BlogThis-button. This button allows the user to paste the current URL into a new blog-item created at Blogger. It sounds like a useful feature (I am not able to test it). It offers the user a service: “take URL, open new web page and put URL into the form”. These are all client side actions. There seems to be no online service involved.
A funny story appeared on Wired News:
While hundreds of thousands of Americans rush to sign up for the Federal Trade Commission’s new do-not-call service, many Yahoo users are left wondering why they haven’t received their registration confirmation. The reason? Yahoo’s spam filter doesn’t like the FTC’s onslaught of e-mail.
It seems that legal spam does exist, but the spam-filers trigger on it. But then maybe I should not call it spam. It shows that you can noyt always define a spam filtering rule which applies to all users.
Gizmodo mentioned an interesting service created by the Aalborg zoo in Denmark. It is an advanced combination of three mobile / wireless technologies (bluetooth, wireless LAN and GSM (SMS)). In combination it offers a tracking services, with notification by SMS
Base stations scattered around a site detect nearby bluetooth tags worn by kids and relay their location to a central database via wireless LAN (local area network). Parents register their cell phones with the system and can get an update on their progeny’s position within 20 seconds of sending a query text message.
Adam Curry reported a funny website (Mobile Asses), which started me to wonder about the services behind the mobile camera. What is the service behind taking a picture and sending it to someone or submitiing it to a site?
Basically the service is very simple, i.e. it is email with an embedded or attached image file. However the mobile phone, the embedded camera and the client software around camera and phone, make the service more intriguing. To the user of this package (phone, camera and client0 the service is the combination of these three item. To him taking and sending and image is the service offered by the service provider of the mobile phone.
It however depends very much how the software works on the phone. Are taking picture and sending it, two steps for the user of is it integrated? In the first case it a “take and picture email service” and in the latter case just a “picture email service”. And maybe the word mobile or wireless should be added to the service name.
My guess is that it is just an email service for most picture phones, as the user might be offered more options apart from emailing a picture.
The most intriguing part remains the influence of the capabilities of the client on the service
I have been busy with entering my site ([url=http://www.sivas.com]http://www.sivas.com[/url]) on one of the holiday directories ([url=http://www.vakantielinks.nl]http://www.vakantielinks.nl[/url]). This kind of service is pretty new to me, so worthwhile to discuss in this log.
The Service Provider offers services to two kind of users: the holiday information seeker and the holiday site provider.
The information seeker sees a list of sites (with a link, information and sometimes a banner), all related to holidays. The sites are ranked on some kind of popularity measure, i.e. the number of times the service was reached from a link on the site of the holiday site provider. Also the outgoing hits are counted, but not used in the ranking. The ranking is thus a measure of the most popular advert of [url=http://www.vakantielinks.nl]http://www.vakantielinks.nl[/url] on the holiday information site provider. Is this good measure of the holiday site’s popularity? The counters are by the way reset every two weeks. Sites which do not get enough traffic will not appear on the list of the SP. Note that the end-user can only search by scrolling through the entire list.
The service to the holiday site provider (HSP) is of offering an entry in the list. And the HSP can edit his information if needed.
First of all we have to discuss what kind of service is provided by [url=http://www.vakantielinks.nl]http://www.vakantielinks.nl[/url] The service is primarily targeted to end-users, i.e. the holiday information seeker. The service provides to this user a single functionality: searching. Thus [url=http://www.vakantielinks.nl]http://www.vakantielinks.nl[/url] is part of the Tele-Service category (end-user, single functionality) and specificaly the part of the Tele-Searching sub-category. But more details of the service are available, as the search realm is limited to sites with a single purpose; holiday information. Maybe this should be called Limited Tele-Searching or better Tele-Directory with only a single category. Also important is the ranking provided by the Service Provider based on some popularity measure, i.e. a Ranked Tele-Directory.
The service provided to the HSP is very simple, i.e. a marketing tool for his business. It is an Enabling Service for his CRM Marketing process and offers a Advertising tool. Thus it is a Enabling CRM Marketing Advertising service. Probably this can be specified even further.