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FaceBook Places, watch out

Facebook is rolling out a new feature called "Places", this is very much like the Foursquare and Gowalla check-ins.

This is a neat feature, but, and it's a big BUT, you better check your settings.

The big one is the option to allow others to check you in. This can be very, very bad. As I posted on my FaceBook status, you need to disable this option. This will keep folks from pranking you by checking you in to some, let's say, not so nice places. Such as, adult bookstore, strip club, the drug corner down the street. Obviously you wouldn't want to check in there, especially if you are supposed to be somewhere else.

Also, I set the option on who can see my places to only friends and friends of friends. Although I use foursquare, I am selective on where I check in. And those places I could care two shits if anyone finds out about it.

Also, check out this non-option


So remember, your privacy is yours to control. Sadly, FaceBook made this an Opt-out option for overall Places control. You can find that in your privacy settings. So if you don't want to play in Places, you have to tell Facebook that. I'm sure this will change when the pressure hits. 

UPDATE : Apparently the option to participate in places may or may not be on by default. I checked my account and my twins accounts and they were already enabled. For my wife, her's was set to OFF. Be curious as to what yours was set to when you checked.

Opt-In /Opt-Out


Color Spash

Harlan after a little Color Spash iPhone app treatment. This is what happens when one can't sleep, you play with photos and apps.


Social Graph Search

I was doing a little googling today and came across another beta from Google. This one was a bit hidden but seems to show where search is going. Before Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube and the like, we went to a search page and took the results for what they were. Now that we have all these virtual contacts and outlets, we would use what our friends (Virtual and Real) would say over some random bot. 

So this new setting from Google is a move in that direction from what I can tell. You can see what it looks like below. This is from a google search of Georgia Bulldogs.Social Graph Search

I may have missed this in the past, so this may be old new, but let me know what you think about this.


The End of Cellular Minutes

via Flickr ( by ecerverab)As we move to a more mobile and digital world, the value of cellular minutes will be coming to an end. Just think about your plan 10 years ago vs this past year. I know for me, I got the lowest number of minutes with the highest data plan this year. In the past it was all about the minutes.

With services such as Skype and the new Apple FaceTime, where your call is just 1's and 0's, the need for a minute begins to lose it's value. It's all about the data. Ars Technica had an article regarding data usage on Skype vs minutes. Yes using Skype saves minutes, but it eats your data. But you can see where this is going. 

Another example of this is the rumor that Apple will give FaceTime to the iPod Touch. This is a Wi-Fi only unit, so it's all about the data not the minutes. So seeing this in a phone with just 3G or 4G for just data handling is not that hard to believe (see the iPad 3G). 

How do you select your plan, are you going low minutes and high data. I'm willing to bet you are. I'm also sure you are sucking down the data bytes as fast as you can. Do you think in a few years, that your minutes will continue to drop and your data usage goes up. I'm betting yes.

If you don't think the carriers aren't aware of this, just look at the pricing tiers. They are already beginning to use the subsets of data usage. They also are not promoting the 1000 Minutes or unlimited minutes. Because they know, people don't use the phone for a minutes phone. Another reason in that is almost all carrier to same carrier calls don't count against minutes. So the fact that they allow this goes to show, that they know they are not going to make their money off of minutes anymore. 

What are your thoughts, I would love to hear them. 


Recap - Countdown to Kickoff 2010

Brandon Boykin and MeWell the Countdown to Kickoff has come and gone. This only means that we are that much closer to kickoff this fall. Players will soon be reporting to camp and the fans will begin to get their tailgate gear in order. 

If you have not made it out to the Countdown before, this is a great chance to meet some players without the huge lines. It also has some activities for the kids. Turns out, my kids and it appears Bernie's Kids liked the rides and the games. The Cheerleaders, the Redcoats and Hairy Dawg all stopped by. 

The Event was hosted by David Greene and the Stinchcomb brothers (Matt and Jon). I did get to see Jon's ring from the Super Bowl, I'll add a few more pics to the Flickr Page when I get them uploaded. 

Thanks to Bulldawg Illustrated for the hook-up. If you have not stopped by their site or picked up the magazine, do so. It's a good read.

So here are a few of the sites and sounds from Fan Day 2010. Enjoy. 







Touch is the now and future

For those that don't have touch devices, this may not ring true on your mind, but please read on.

For touch device, I'm talking about a computer or device that is just a screen. No keyboard attached, no mouse, just a screen.

Why do I say touch is the now, well if you have seen the iPhone/itouch or iPad, you have seen the latest in touch. For years others have had touch devices, but they never hit mainstream. For whatever reason, this time it took. Apple has put this touch technology in the hands of millions and it's rubbing off to other devices.

Just last night, my wife was using her netbook, the kids had her iPad, to show me some iPhone cases. The first thing she did was to reach up to the screen to make it scroll, followed by a tap to select. This didn't work, so we were back at the keyboard.

So with this touch technology already taking hold in the way we want to operate with our computers, can it be said that in the near future your laptop or desktop may have touch screens. I sure can see it.

Now, to be honest, I don't think the desktop will see the screen touch anytime soon. Many have that 24 inch or larger screen. So it's just not practical to touch it. Could it have a touch/virtual keyboard that implies touch, yes.

As for laptops, this is a no brainer. You could have a touch screen and a touch keyboard. The keyboard would have to have feedback or else the mainstream may not take to it. I know it took me a while to get use to the touch keypad, but now I can fly through typing. This is especially true on my iPad.

So when can we expect these new touch devices. I would say not now. The cost is too much, but within just a year or two, expect to see models coming out. The key will be the interface. It will have to be smooth and fast. Has to be zero learning curve or a rather small learning curve. And it has to be the full time computer. Today the Apple touch devices can not be used without a computer at some point during the day. Although the apps are there for all day use, sometimes it's nice to go back to the real computer. This new device has to be that real computer is power and function.

So, what do you think. Also let me know if you have ever reached up to your laptop or desktop to select something on-screen with your finger.


USC, Do The Right Thing

With the sanctions that have been handed down by the NCAA upon the USC football team, USC needs to do the right thing and expand on the release of players.

Under the current rules, players with two years or less of eligible playing time left can transfer with a release without having to sit out a year. So USC should grant any request of other players to leave as well. The NCAA, should also allow those kids to play without having to sit out a year.

With USC being hit with a two year ban of post-season play, the loss of ten scholarships a year for 3 years and the loss of wins, what kid that didn't already have ties or a love for USC would want to stay.

If USC did the right thing, I could even allow restrictions on where they could go. For example, I could see them restricting UCLA from the list of schools they could transfer to.

On a side note, this hits USC at a bad time. With the Pac-10 expanding and the possible championship game that would come along with this, you know USC was just hoping to win the first one and expand on their recent controlling of the Pac-10.

PS: wow I got post happy the last two days