I tried IntenseDebate for a couple of months. It Sucks. Badly. I've seen comments vanish, disappear, make all sorts of odd things.
I've seen comments going to ID but not to the blog and viceversa.
As a result I decided to deactivate the doomed thing today. And I lost a lot of comments thanks to that dreaded 2 decisions.
I'm really pissed. But, what can you do. I'll look at ways of recovering those comments.
There has been a lot of buzz around the real time web lately. And the main responsible for that buzz has been, without a doubt, twitter. Some have gone to the extent of saying that Google is afraid of twitter.
Well, hum, I don’t think so, clearly the mountain-view gang is worried about other stuff, not twitter. Twitter does not overlap with what google does. Yet it does open the door to something somewhat novel.
One of the main differences of twitter with “chat” as we knew it is that the content is stored, indexed, and publicly available in the form of webpages. IRC, for instance (or Messenger, or Yahoo! IM) uses its own protocol to transfer, store and access information which, in most cases is not publicly available either.
The so-called “real time web” then is actually “almost real time web”. This makes a small difference to the human interactions (things happen as fast as we can assimilate them) but has huge implications from a technological and indexing point of view.
This is where google comes into play, why they shouldn’t worry and why this rumor about big G’s plans to launch microblogging search makes perfect sense.
Let me explain.
Twitter is endogamy. It is a self-contained universe. Fair enough, its API allows all sorts of interactions with the outside world and extensibility through other services and programs, but it all orbits around the same. Google, on the other hand has always been an outside-looking company and set of services.
Google’s basic premise is to crawl what others generate in order to allow people to find that content. That premise does not have to change with the so-called real-time web. That is what makes companies such as google so interesting, the fundamentals are so simple that they can adapt to changes without having to change them. As a matter of fact what google needs is other real time content-generation sites and services to proliferate.
How so? since most people use Twitter it makes perfect sense to use Twitter’s native search when looking for the latest. But what would happen if there were another big player in the scene? You’d end up using a search engine that indexes them both. That is if such two things existed. It does not make sense for google to buy Twitter, but it makes perfect sense for google to foster and help new players to enter that market.
A lot has been said about how important(sic) Twitter is in news-spreading. I remain skeptic.
I plan to blog about the Iran-Twitter affair soon (and I know most people won’t like that post), but a quick lesson learnt from the entire thing is that Twitter is neither a good nor reliable news source. It is a good alert system, granted, but if you need in-depth information, background or analysis you better seek some place else.
In what seems to be the trend with every new wave of web technologies (scrape the term technologies, this is not technology, call it “usage”) the signal to noise radio decreases. If you watch the entire river of tweets you’ll only spot a very tiny percentage that are meaningful in any way. Yet, I think enough has been said about the amount of rubbish going on in twitter all of the time.
Bottom line is: Would I buy Twitter stock? Probably not for the long run. Do I think Real time web is here to stay? yes it is, we’ve only seen the tip of the iceberg.