All posts by gorogers

Snapchat – The next “core” App?

The six reasons why Snap chat has been so successful:

1. Snapchat is exclusively on mobile devices. The trend of late is to move towards mobile and tablet use as people constantly have them on their person. Where as computers are only used for being productive. Thus apps that are exclusive to mobile users are attractive to both to users as well as investors. The goal behind Snapchat is to make it a “core utility” that sits front and center on the main screen of mobile devices similar to a Phones texting feature.
2. User engagement, traction, growth curve, momentum. Snapchat users were sharing 20 million photos per day October 2012, 150 million photos per day April 2013, 200 million photos per day June 2013, 350 million per day September 2013. Snapchat won’t discuss the user counts but that number is clearly growing along with the photos shared.
3.Age of the audience and size of market. Snapchat users are a prime demographic for using the technology and attracting advertising dollars.
4. User Generated Network Effect. When a Snapchat user sends a photo to another user they have likely acquired another Snapchat user without the company having to spend to acquire the user.
5. Snapchat’s technology clearly adds value to what currently existed and does not require an intricate sell. Users can see the value of the technology without much of an explanation.
6. Regular user engagement. Snapchat’s technology is not a one-off fascination.

 

Think of the idea of Snapchat replacing texting as a whole, is it even possible? When it comes to the younger demographic the trend is very real, with Snapchat a person doesn’t have to worry about an image of them “getting out” or being leaked to the public. This is due to the core features of the app, which allows users to share a picture containing a short caption for a maximum of thirty seconds, then it’s gone. Furthermore the app actually notifies the sender of an image if a user screenshots it. Allowing them or their parents to know exactly who is keep a collection of their pictures. This idea of time sensitive pictures has made the platform much more casual and fun people of all ages. The “Dads” are even getting into it even if it’s only for a quick laugh.

Thus my question to you is two fold. First – Do you use Snapchat, and secondly if you do how many “snaps” do you send a day? Post your answers in the comment section below!

The Rise of Bitcoin

Over the past six months bit coins and lite coins have made quite a splash worldwide. As a seemingly new found currency exploding from a worth of .10 cents a coin to a value of $900 a piece, ans still steadily rising. Being that bit coin is a virtual currency, and can be transferred and acquired across the globe in a matter of seconds. People from every aspect of life are eyeing it’s potential, from the entrepreneur looking to make a quick buck to the FTC racking their brains no how the hell they can regulate the currency.

Due to the nature of virtual currencies, their ups and downs are able to balloon and crash quite easily. Thus the reason large investment firms are  doing anything they can to get their hands on a measurable percentage of the current market; which would inadvertently allow them to have some control over the rise and fall for their own benefit.

Over the last month 40 days the both the bit coin and lite coin have shot of from an average of ~$135 to just over $900 a piece. With an almost tenfold profit margin people with a mere one or two coins in their virtual wallets are rejoicing as they sit and watch their money build.  While others are kicking themselves for cashing out early due to the natural rise and falls of such an entity. It leaves many to wonder just why the sudden hike in value, and is it too late to invest themselves? Pertaining to my last post on the silkroad, an estimated 13-18 percent of the entire bit coin market was accumulated in onsite and other linked wallets. After the seizure of the site many have been weary of even logging in wondering if their passwords will be logged and their funds seized as has been the case with quite a few already decrypted wallets. Causing a slight shortage in a entity that was little known to the general public just a couple months ago.

Food for thought.

-Giles R.

 

 

The silkroad – FBI makes history with the first online drug seizure

http://www.forbes.com/sites/andygreenberg/2013/10/25/fbi-says-its-seized-20-million-in-bitcoins-from-ross-ulbricht-alleged-owner-of-silk-road/

Just two weeks ago The Silk road, the Internets most popular online black market was seized by the FBI. Along with the site seizure the owner/creator 29 year old Ross Ulbricht was taken into custody on charges of  engaging in a drug trafficking and money laundering conspiracy as well as computer hacking and attempted murder-for-hire. All of which were constant uses of eBay like site, with operations from your local neighborhood drug dealer to international arms dealers, basically if you need a job done, you can find the the person to do it on the silk road. Furthermore “dealers” and customers alike have a feedback system enabled on their profile allowing them to establish credibility in their market. With contract killers on the site, this obviously should be seen as rather sicking. Within 48 hours of the sites seizure The Silk Road 2.0 was up and running again, and hosted in a country where the FBI has no jurisdiction. Thus the ball keeps on rolling.

Personally I don’t feel that there should have been any action taken against the site in the first place. This is due to the fact that the idea will never die, in short once an idea is out there  I believe it’s almost impossible to kill it. What are your thoughts on The seizure and/or The Silk Road in general.

Motorola announces a partnership with Phonebloks

Motorola announces a partnership with Phonebloks

Concerning my previous post, which can be found by clicking the following link. 

https://mdst485class.wordpress.com/2013/09/26/phonebloks-a-phone-worth-keeping/

Motorola (part of the Google syndicate) has decided to take on this innovative new idea of a phone that is truly built to last. Due to the constant electronic waste we as people shelling out on phones alone, phones that a supposed to last us a couple years on contract but usually have a life time of half that. 

Though this project is still in its early stages and Motorola has yet to disclose the amount of money they’re going to put into this project it still seems to be quite promising. In that Hakken (the innovator behind Phonebloks) has hyped up the mobile manufacturing crowd by stating publicly that his partnership with Motorola is not exclusive, and that he is willing to work with anyone who work on the concept.

With our help, and continued interest as citizens of the world we pollute we could truly get this project off the ground, minimize global electronic waste, and have a phone that could be anything from a basic radio to a mini supercomputer in the palms of our hands.

Support this cause today by checking out Phonebloks – A phone worth keeping.

https://phonebloks.com/

 

Phonebloks – A phone worth keeping

The idea Phonebloks presents is a great alternative concept for a piece of technology almost everyone in the western world makes use of on a daily basis. It’s true that a vast majority of our technologies aren’t made to last. Is this more a problem of cost or simply the perpetual motion of the ever advancing technological field?

How I see it, any piece of technology is outdated after two years anyways. If you use it for more than Facebook and email that is.  How would it be any different with this phone? The components would be constantly become outdated, meaning people would be in constant a “keeping up with the Jones’s” mentality. Ultimately this would cause just as much, if not more electronic waste overtime. Because people always want the newest toy.

In theory this would eliminate the competitive drive companies have to best one another. Now is that truly a good thing, or would it simply create yet another monopoly holding conglomerate. In the video the idea is present that different companies would make their own specific bloks for public purchase, but in the world of business there is always the giants who run the market. For example– would people simply buy certain components because they contain the Apple logo because they’re considered reputable now? Lastly how would operating systems work/be doled out, and how would actually get control over the “app market”?

Though Phonebloks has a good idea/concept I don’t feel it would ever work in reality, nor with the current way capitalism and the western world choose to conduct business. Just like any other campaign they blow the positives out of proportions, and skirt the negatives.

A comparison on zombie movies – ([REC] vs Quarantine)

[REC] Trailer – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GAnbWCjmOkA

Quarantine Trailer – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KoBh5S_aWwk

Sets:
The sets from both films are practically identical. So there’s no noticeable differences/effects there.

Scare factor:
This is a rather subjective topic, though both films do a good job of making the viewer much more involved than the stereotypical horror films we’re so used to. Now you could say seeing Rec prior to Quarantine may have made it seem less scary one might experience while watching Quarantine, but the same can be said for the reverse scenario. Though Quarantine has added a few new scares to the mix. Another thing people seem to be constantly complaining about in Quarantine is the final “infected creature” wasn’t nearly as intimidating as the girl in Rec. But how they shoot that final ten minutes still has everyone’s heart pounding.

Gore:
Neither movie is tame when it comes to the graphic factor, but Quarantine is definitely more extreme. With the camera man mauling a zombie, and witnessing a dog in the elevator succumb to the same fate. The effects in both films are amazing, but if you’re simply  looking for bloodshed Quarantine spills  gallons more.

Characters:
First major difference: In Rec the cameraman never makes an appearance, where as in Quarantine the cameraman is seen at least partially multiple times. In both films, the relationship between the reporter (Angela) and the cameraman (Pablo/Scott) is very established. So in Quarantine the relationship isn’t soured the least bit by having Scott on screen from time to time as so many people say it does. In fact, one could say it adds more depth to their relationship.

Second: The two main firefighters (Manu and Alex in Rec, Jake and Fletcher in Quarantine) are quite different between the two films. In Rec, we are meet them and liking them is a given. But we’re not supposed to feel much sympathy for them. Where as in Quarantine gives us more face time with the two at the beginning at the fire station so we feel more of a loss when they’re taken out of the picture.

Third: The reporter (Angela) is somewhat likable in both films, but in Rec she has a bitchier, more career-oriented attitude. Where as in Quarantine, Angela is younger, less seasoned, and overall a nicer person. Both can characters play the lead role quite well, but Quarantine’s Angela seems to feel the impact of the situation and has a genuine fear. As shown in the scenes displaying her mental breakdown. Neither portrayal is better than the other, they are just two slightly different Angela’s.

Fourth: The residents differ slightly, but does it matter? Everyone dies in the end anyways! However in Quarantine the residents do play a larger role as the group slowly gets picked off.

Story:
From shot to shot, there isn’t much variation between the two films– but there are a few things one would notice on a second or third viewing. Such as added scenes and dialogue at the fire station in Quarantine to make us identify with the main group of characters further. There is also more creature set-pieces in Quarantine, to be more specific the old lady watching television scene, and the “infected” dog in the elevator scenes. One big change between the two is the origin of the infection. Which one is better is something you must decide for yourself.  Personally I lean in Rec’s because it’s the original. When viewing Quarantine be on the watch for the extra scenes as really do add that extra impact when it comes to character depth and relation.

Now on to the real question.
(Since you most likely just scrolled all the way through looking for a snip-it to reply /post your opinion on.)

Which film do you think was better, scared you more, or was more realistic? If you’ve seen both that is. Also how did you feel about Rec 2 and Quarantine 2?