Blellow: More Than Just Another Name for the Color Green (Or, Show Me The Green)

Seriously now, do we need another on-line social network? Apparently we do. Frustrated with LinkedIn’s almost stationary pace? Fed up with the noise on Twitter? Try Blellow, a social network that groups similarly-situated professionals for purposes of collaboration, cross-communiction and commiseration. The idea behind the site is that users can group themselves with other users of a similar ilk and can then exchange ideas in a format similar to Twitter, secure expert information on a task, and possibly even secure work opportunities. Of course, there is the ever-present networking opportunity as well. Send messages to other Blellow group members or, like in the old tried-and-try bulletin board or listserv vein, ask questions to the general group and get tips and feedback from your peers. When you “thank” your responders, they gain value in the system. This can make them more visible to potential employers or clients, which in turn encourages members to respond to questions with rich answers. The site also offers peer document sharing, with up to 10 gb of storage space for $10 per month.

Blellow really does offer a unique combination of features and is getting closer to what I would envision to be a true, value-added professional social network. Unfortunately, a search of the site revealed only a patent lawyer and an 8 member law group. But, if you are an intrepid pioneer, perhaps you can go over and join this group and be in on the ground floor, or even form your own. Blellow is still in beta so it is expected the scope is not fully developed. With Blellow, the possibilities seem broader than Twitter and more focused and dynamic than LinkedIn.

Check out the video below for more detail and an example:

Blellow How It Works

Hat tip to Techcrunch

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Real-Time, Deep Web People Search

123people search is a search engine that digs deep to find a breadth of public information from a variety of web researches in real time. It mines social networks such as Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Zing, Friendster, HiFive, Flickr, Bebo, Bloglines, Blogger and others, web links, tag clouds, biographies, email, phone numbers, news, images and video. Previously available in the U.S., Austria, Germany, and Switzerland, 123people is now available for British, German, Austrian, French, Swiss and Spanish sites too.

Check out the U.S. version here. You never know what you might find.

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iPhone Copy & Paste? Merry Christmas!!!!!!!

As we all anxiously await (yes, I know you are too) the news tomorrow about iPhone 3.0, the leaks are starting to seep through the cracks. Kevin Purdy at Lifehacker reports that Digg founder Kevin Rose spilled some beans about …. COPY & PASTE!!!!! It’s like the Red Cross coming to rescue my battle-worn fingers beleaguered and besieged by the iPhone touchscreen keyboard!

It seems the user will be able to pinch and drag two quote icons to create copy boundaries and then be able to select from a dialog cut, copy, or paste-in the copied text. LifeHacker has a video – please hit the jump above if you are interested in viewing it.

Purdy asks how pinch-able copy and paste sounds to readers. I say IT SOUNDS LIKE CHRISTMAS IN MARCH!

[of course, you can get copy and paste, video, turn-by-turn voice directions and a host of other features in your iPhone if you were interested in jail-breaking the poor dear. Not that I would advocate illegal or illicit behavior here in the Studio. I’m just sayin’, is all.]

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Is it a Tablet? Is it an eReader? Apple Is Dangling the Fruit

Image by The Pug Father via Flickr

Last week was all aflutter about whether Apple’s large order of 10-inch touch screens from a Taiwanese manufacturer was intended for a tablet / netbook, with mock-ups of what was thought to be the end result. Then, someone started positing that the screens were meant for an eReader to go head to head (or toe to toe) with the Kindle. CNET published a story on this “about face” last Thursday. The rumor started with Apple writer Andy Ihnatko postulating that he had heard from someone else that someone else had seen truckloads of books (“actual, real, honest-to-goodness-paper-bound books) being delivered to Cupertino. The idea is that these books are being scanned for an eReader library. Ihnatko wouldn’t even rank his information as a “rumor” but merely “an interesting story.”

Interesting tale, given that Kindle and the iPhone have recently teamed up to offer a reader app.

Mea culpa – I am one of “those” rehashing this “interesting story” cum “rumor” soon to be “complete and honest truth” about the eReader, a phenomenon I have seen happen time and again on the Web. Like a telphone tag game on steroids, no one really knows what will actually happen at Apple within the next year or two, including people at Apple. Nonetheless, we, the audience are hungry for the next big thing and Apple never fails to disappoint.

Whatever the future holds, I am sure we will soon be treated to another interesting and innovative product from Apple that costs way too much money.

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WordPerfect 5.1 Still Getting Some Love

Image via Wikipedia

The Advocate loves all things tech, especially new and cool tech, but there are just some things that stand tall in the evolutionary process and pass the test of time with flying colors. I was, still am and always will be a fan of WordPerfect. Ross Kodner at Ross Ipsa Loquitur talks about how there are still legals out there using this “venerable and venerated” word processor. Kodner notes that the stripped down processor works just fine with XP and even with Vista operating systems. He includes a link to a site offering updates allowing it to run under these systems. He also believes that the “soothing blue background” hoists him over his writer’s block and unlocks the precious flow of argument or prose. All you need is a floppy disc and a drive to bring back the magic.

I remember how much I resented when I changed employers and had to switch from WordPerfect to Word. I was so unhappy that I was thrust into a program that didn’t afford an ability to get behind the scenes in my document and easily modify its structure. And Kodner has a point: the more bells and whistles word processing programs get, the more stumbling blocks stand in the way of the writing process. There is something to be said for simplicity. Even paper and pen have their place in the modern practice – remember, once upon a time these tools were considered high tech too.

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