Facebook’s Like Button does what the Share Button does, Duh!

Facebook has made a change to the way their Like button works. It now acts as a Share button. So, if you hit Like, which necessarily means you approve of the information shared by your friends or a particular site, Like will display a picture, a headline and a little blurb, along with the option to comment. This is exactly what the Share button does.

What will happen to the Share button?

There are several versions of what could happen to it. Official Facebook update was to continue to support the Share button. They say that strengthening the Like is just a pilot phase, and decision regarding what could be done post this phase is company secret as of now. If it’s a test phase, I wonder why it has been rolled out to everyone? Why not pick some, and do what they did for the new Facebook profile? Some questions are best answered when it comes from the horses’ mouth!

Here’s another version – Inside Facebook reports that the Share button has been removed from developers’ documentation. Developers always had the option of pushing content to Facebook as they wanted – a share button, a simple, comment-less like, and a recommend-with-comment option. The current change will enforce full details to be pushed to Facebook and not just pieces. Maybe it’s a good thing after all!

85% Employees (Under 25) in IT Organizations Use Gmail for Official Communication

This may come as a surprise for many employees, especially those working in IT. A survey conducted by e-mail management company Mimecast concludes that around 85% of the sample aged under 25 years used Gmail for their official communication.

The sample size chosen was fairly small at 2400. The biggest concern that the employees who fell within the 85% complained was the minute file attachment limit employed in IT organizations – especially when their jobs demand them to share data rapidly. It is a well known fact that many IT companies restrict users to much smaller attachment sizes compared to Gmail and other free email service providers.

Using personal emails is high risk for the company, and could end up with clients moving away as far as possible. Many multi-national corporations have enforced curfews using softwares such as websense which ensure that websites such as Gmail, Yahoo amongst others that are potentially unsafe, are on the ban list.

Mimecast’s chief scientist Nathaniel Borenstein has a sympathizing take on the situation – “The results show that workers frustrated with corporate restrictions are using personal email accounts in order to maintain productivity.”

Another interesting fact that was revealed in this survey was the use of file sharing websites such as Megaupload.

To me, it looks like the IT management isn’t supporting the needs of their employees effectively in order to be productive. I believe it is time to free up the space, and let all data flow within the office network. These things could have adverse effects if the company goes for an ISO27K1 certification.

A solution that one of my previous organizations implemented was a file sharing website such as Megaupload, but access controlled to company employees only. It worked pretty well, and it mainly prevented choking the email servers when large attachments have to be shared across a huge chunk.

Another simple solution would be to implement MS SharePoint, or any other similar portals. This would put the load on the file server, and not on the database. And, the load may not come up at the same instant as in a mail system.

Google Adds Recipe Search Feature

Google has added a new feature in the United States and Japan earlier yesterday, which provides users the filters to search recipes across the net.

The new feature is christened recipe view.

To access this view, go to google.com, and type the name of a dish. In the example chosen here, it is vegetable biryani, seasoned rice from North India. On the left, select Recipes to enable recipe view. Here, you can filter recipes based on ingredients, calories, cooking time, format (video or text) amongst others.

The search result displays some key information to help the user make a choice whether to click on a link. It provides rating on five, number of reviews and the cooking time – pretty slick.

The recipe view feature is currently in pilot phase, and if (when) successful, will find home in other countries sometime down the line.

.ly Domain on the Verge of Shutdown?

The impact of total internet shutdown in Libya is causing tremors around the globe, and it gravely threatens the .ly domain shutdown.

Libya’s top level domain, .ly, is commonly used for url shortener websites, the biggest being bit.ly.

John Borthwick, CEO of bit.ly allayed all fears – “For .ly domains to be unresolvable the five .ly root servers that are authoritative *all* have to be offline, or responding with empty responses. Of the five root nameservers for the .ly TLD: two are based in Oregon, one is in the Netherlands and two are in Libya. ”

The .ly registry lies within Libya, and Kim Davies rightly states that despite having servers outside Libya will not help, as the updates should flow in through the registry.

So, the big question is whether a country top level domain be controlled within a geography?

I think this is something we should look at closely. Countries must be able to provide guidelines, and put rules around the block for registering country TLD. But, once an address is allocated, the presence of the url should not come under the purview of any nation, but directly under ICANN. This will ensure that politics within a country does not affect the rest of the world.

What are your thoughts on resolving this issue?

Nokia Switches to Microsoft Bandwagon

In what could change the turn of history for future to admire (or admonish), the biggest mobile phone giant has partnered with perhaps the most hated mobile phone operating system. Nokia and (say what!) Windows. But, the OS that will sit on Nokia hardware is the under performing Windows Phone 7 OS. Is this a strategy to grow or to disappear into oblivion for the Finnish mobile giant?

Read Windows phone 7 OS review here

This is definitely a shocker of a news if you are a cellphone freak, especially if you own a high end Nokia phone. The new partnership will signal the end of Symbian operating system for starters, and all the development of applications that go around it. So, if you are in the market for a cellphone, don’t buy Nokia! At least for now.

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, an ex-Microsoft executive had hinted at a strategic move that the company would take in his employee communication last week, but the turn of events that unfolded today would have sent shock waves (literally) across the Nokia cubicles. On the other hand, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer would be pleased to get WP7 off the runway, but at the end of the day, for Microsoft, it is business – nothing more.

So, what are the changes a Nokia fanatic (if left to endure) can expect?

- WP7 will sit on Nokia smartphones.

- Nokia will be involved in the future development of this operating system, and they would contribute its expertise on hardware design and language support.

- Microsoft’s search engine Bing will be exclusively used on Nokia devices and Microsoft adCenter would provide search advertising services on Nokia’s line of devices and services.

- In exchange for Bing, Microsoft will do away with their MS Maps and take Nokia Maps onboard.

- Nokia’s content and application store would be integrated with Microsoft Marketplace.

- Nokia will provide Microsoft revenue opportunity. Cell phone users can purchase from MS Marketplace through their Nokia phone, and the cell phone provider would append the charges to the monthly bill.

In retrospect, I am beginning to wonder if this strategy is just what Nokia was looking for in the smartphone business. Their smartphones are outclassed and outnumbered by the iPhones and HTCs. Their market depth is shallow, and adding a powerful OS to their smartphone shoal will definitely count to a resurrection of sorts.

The coming months will clearly indicate how the market would react to this unholy marriage. Unholy may not always mean non-profitable!

press release