OoTheNigerian

sometimes, I make a lot of sense.

Tag Archives for: Google

Why The Internet Has To Be Censored And Regulated.

28 November 2012 by Oo

I wrote this during the fight against SOPA. However, like many other posts, I did not get around to publishing it. I recently came across Google’s take action campaign that is against the plot by governments to sign new treaties this December that will regulate the Internet more.

Mind you, I did not say should be but ‘has to be’ from the view of the political class. I certainly do not want the Internet censored or more regulated.

A few thousand years ago, when the first structures of society where being put in place, the deal struck to prevent a physical society with anarchy was to centralize ‘power’ with the state (largest independent political unit) and then have representatives of the people run the state.

Fast forward a few centuries, a couple of wars, commerce, etc and the state became bigger, much bigger. Nations were born. The centralized power became greater. The chance to represent the Nation became smaller and the stakes became higher.

A bigger state meant a massive population which would be harder to control therefore it became necessary to control what they knew and how they could operate. Books, TV, Telephone, Radio, International travel etc came along and tried to scuttle the status quo. But the political class was smart enough to take advantage of it early and used it as a tool to control on a larger scale.

Then the Internet ‘happened’.

It was ignored, then ridiculed and before anyone could say “facebook”, societies of 1 Billion (the third largest in the world, certainly the most diverse) got formed. Information began moving overground (Twitter) and underground (BBM,WhatsApp). Internet companies started knowing more about citizens that the nations who gave them their passports. Transactions and currencies that could not be monitored started springing up

It is ‘obvious’ this new power and control is too dangerous/important to be left to ‘ordinary’ people. The political class have to take it back.

So they’ve come first by passing the laws that will enable them covertly take back power. Countries like North Korea, Iran, China are being straightforward about it. America is  trying to be smarter, they’re waving the copyright flag, child porn flag, the terrorism flag, then they will raise the victory flag.
Shall we let them win?

PS:
I know my post might sound incongruous. you may do yourself a favour and read The Fundamentals of Political Philosophy then watch The century of Self

Random prediction: In the next decade, the political structure of society will start changing fundamentally. Corporations will own the state and the national ‘borders’ will become more digital, dynamic and I dare say, collapse. Currency will become much more deregulated

This Internet thing has really fucked things up.

I’m happy :)

Please forgive typos…

4 comments | Categories: Politics, Technology | Tags: , , , , ,

Dear Larry, Before You Buy AirTime, Lets Talk About Google +

11 April 2012 by Oo

Dear Larry,

I will start with a very short story.

When two cousins of mine were about 5 and 2 years of age, the one that was 2 was crying and their mother (my aunt) was trying to console him. The one that was 5 came around and inquired, “What’s happening mummy? Why is baby crying?”. The mum responded “Baby does not want to relax”. The 5 year old looked at the little baby with concern, then began to shake him violently “RELAX! RELAX!! RELAX!!!” he commanded.

Larry, that is what you are doing to us with Google Plus. “HAVE FUN HERE!!! HAVE FUN HERE!!” You are commanding. You are integrating the plus button everywhere, from the browser to every search result. I am afraid, it is not going to work that way. There are some activities that just cannot be forced. Having fun is one of them.

Google Plus had it’s chance though but did not take it. While you were forcing us to have fun, you were not listening. The baby could not speak, but we can, we did, but you did not listen. For instance, here is a little thing that might have made a lot of difference. You know that annoying red notification thing on the right? It prevented me from properly curating my circles. I just got into the habit of ignoring all. Friends and foes alike.

However, all is not lost. You will now see why AirTime is mentioned in the title of this post. Larry, Google Hangout is a KILLER feature or product of G+. EVERYONE says it. Why don’t you guys pivot and center Google Plus around instant and synchronous communication (Chat + Video). I argued this with the Googlers I met in Nigeria and from my interaction, I got the message “No negotiations. Larry wants it this way, and this way it shall be”.

Anyway, Sean Parker’s AirTime is launching soon and I am sure it will be centered around what I have been saying to you. You have it, but do not recognise it.  It is interesting that even the big boys prefer the thing of others. So before you attempt buying AirTime, maybe you could just give Google Plus a chance. If I were to give you one guiding advice, it would be this let it flow.

PS: I wrote this about a week ago but decided to publish now after seeing Google needing to ‘host’ Nigerian celebrities to push the uptake of Google +. If you have to pay so much for your product to be used, then.. *sigh*. Instagram rebuffed compensation demand from Justin Bieber’s people when he started using their app. His response? He used it anyway. It was/is that good.

4 comments | Categories: Digital Media, Startups | Tags: , , ,

Is Google To Blame For The Android Fork Up?

10 October 2011 by Oo

Recently, Amazon launched the Kindle fire . Also confirmed is that the kindle Fire would be running Amazon’s own version of Android which will be fully customised to integrate with Amazon’s services. And of course – their own App Store.

Dear friends, Jeff Bezo’s Amazon has just forked Android! Amazon is not the only company forking with Android, Baidu is too. I think that is a big blow to Google’s mobile strategy,

A little background

In the early days of Android, companies like Motorola and Samsung bet their future on Android, in return for getting a ‘free’ OS which would compete with the iPhone’s. In return for the free OS they distributed Google’s services around the globe. Note: You cannot use an Android phone without a Google email account and all the services that come with it.

When the Android OS alliance was launched, Eric Schimdt said

"this will be the first fully-integrated software stack, including an operating system and middleware, being made available under the most liberal open-source license ever given to mobile operators and handset makers"

Although looking back, that statement seems technically correct (most liberal does not necessarily mean liberal, but relatively more/most liberal), handset manufacturers were soon to find out Android is not really that open.

I have always been skeptical of Google’s selfless and open initiatives. Google has this strategy (a very good one I concede) of making things free (read: lowering competitiveness of their opponents) only when they are behind. Here is an idea Larry and Sergey about being really open, can we open source the Google search algorithm? :)

This time around Android, I think this strategy has backfired.

The Android Fork up.

As time progressed, big hardware manufacturers realised that Android is open in a different way. It is only after a new version of Android has launched that you would have a chance to peek in. That might be ok for entities like Cyanogen mod, but not for companies that want to be at the bleeding edge, when you have companies like Apple pacing away.

Of recent, Google Android and some of its partners have been getting challenged quite a bit with patent issues. HTC is fighting Apple in various courts around the world while Samsung cannot sell their 10.1 tablet in Europe.

In the spirit of "protecting Android", Google has had to fork out (pun intended) $12.5 billion to buy the Mobile arm of Motorola, inadvertently competing directly with their partners. The CEO’s of their partner companies were so pleased with this move that they said the same thing when it was announced.

(Side Note: If Android was open why didn’t contributors and beneficiaries pool their patents? Why is it left to Google to foot the entire bill of the ‘Android defense? I guess they are really nice guys)

Now with Amazon and Baidu opening the way, I predict other companies will start forking Android left, right and center. I tip Samsung to be the next.

What this fork up might mean:

For Google: Initially, the ‘Free and Open’ strategy made sense. They could offset the cost of developing the Android OS with the money from ad’s (getting people to use Google services and displaying ad’s there) however, these forks have messed that plan up. Both Baidu and Amazon are stripping the OS from those Google applications that normally come with the Android phone. Now Google may have to pay if they want to have their search and other apps default. In the case of Baidu a search engine, the response will be LOLZ .

For Developers and Users: Presently, It seems the same Android apps run on all the different forks of Android, however, How long will it last? I predict that by a maximum of 3 versions away we would start seeing serious compatibility problems with apps. Which inadvertently means different OS’s

I am guessing this gives Microsoft an edge the down the line, to be the second most reliable OS to develop for after Apple’s. Overall, I think the good that might come out of these forking problems is that the web would be the most reliable platform for the delivery of web application services via HTML5.

So is Google’s Chrome a fall back strategy? The Gmail Chome App is done pretty well and Chrome Remote Desktop gives a glimpse of what the Chome OS can be.

Those smart chaps!

Thanks to June for helping me edit this post.

36 comments | Categories: Technology | Tags: , , , , ,

Dear Google Plus, Facebook has Struck Back. It May Be Over!

15 September 2011 by Oo

Earlier today, I was reading comments on Hacker News discussing the decline of traffic on Google Plus. When Google Plus launched, people (including myself) thought it would give Facebook a really though time considering it had many vital features missing from face book Facebook.

  • An Easy way to filter and separate what you share and what is shared with you
  • The One way follow. i.e you could accumulate a large following without the burden of having to accept them as ‘friends’ and in return get lots of ‘news’ polluting your feed
  • The ability to distribute every type of item including text updates.

Rather than build up momentum on what they had started by updating features (linking the mobile Huddle to GTalk) and letting more people in, Google was more concerned about getting the real names of people and punishing people on Gmail for offenses committed on Google Plus.

While Google was busy doing that, Facebook was thinking of different ways to regain momentum. They released Messages, the Skype integration and I said ‘meh’. Yesterday, I heard they released a feature that allows you to subscribe to people. I was not too impressed because ‘unresponded’ friend request acted as subscription. And my settings is such that non-friends can comment on my status. So to me it was not a big deal.

Then I saw this.

Being able to re-share text is such a big deal that you will not understand its implication. In simple terms, your ‘witty words’ can spread far beyond you. That is the single thing that made Twitter VERY powerful. Making words go viral. The only difference is that unlike in Twitter and Google plus, you do not need to struggle to get a following.

So as it is, Gaddafi has a greater chance for a comeback than Google Plus. Difficult? yes. Impossible? No

Two things Facebook might do which will be ‘finishing moves’ (those that played mortal kombat will understand) to Twitter and Google Plus

  1. Create a dedicated app for sharing text only.
  2. Allow people to post updates that can be read without logging in.

But hey, it is rumored that the aim of Google plus is to force Facebook open. If that is the case, Google might be happy with Facebook’s ‘progress’

Note:

  • To activate subscription on your profile, check the bottom of your profile picture. you can only see it on the web version on Facebook.
  • The share button is not activated for everyone yet.
  • Go ahead and see if you can see the subscribe button on the top right corner of my profile
  • After this will there be a need for popular living individuals to have Fan pages?

7 comments | Categories: Technology | Tags: , ,

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