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Showing posts from January, 2008

Impromptu Free Conference Calls

A few weeks ago I started Tweeting my cell phone number as I drive home for an opportunity to use the time to chat with my Social Media friends. it wasn't a roaring sucess yet on the days I got caller the conversation was interesting. Topics-Help choose a blog platform, Social Media spheres and many other topics. -Today inspired by the cell phone tweet @gotbob got a nice idea about using . is a free service to make conference calls. You pay only if you want to use a Toll Free number. You can set up conferences for up to 150 people and can have it be presentations, Q&A sessions. I tried it an its so easy to setup . I took a 45 minute slot, setup the meeting online and then dialed the number. It has very few prompts and you can join the conf in 1 or 2 clicks and the voice quality is good. I tried it and it was awesome. This service is used by the podcampDC team for the Thursday conference calls to keep the orga

Did you really think email is dead?

Marketers Say eMail Strongest Performing Media Buy I just got an email Research Brief for Wednesday, January 30, 2008: which had some interesting facts that proves to me that email is not dead. Datran Media recently released the results of its second annual survey of over 2000 online marketing professionals, finding that 82 percent of the marketers surveyed indicated that they plan to increase their use of email marketing in 2008, and 55 percent of the respondents cite that they expect ROI from email to be higher than any other channel. The reports says that the survey results are consistent with the Direct Marketing Association's recent report, which found that email ROI will hit $45.65 for every dollar spent in 2008, more than twice the ROI of other mediums including search and display. In addition to increased use of email as a media and lead generation channel, the Datran Media survey found: 80 percent of respondents indicat

New Submission Tool for DC tech Events

I met by Ross Karchner again yesterday at the Social MatchBox event yesterday. Ross' Blog - A journal of technology, media, and culture in and around DC and home of DC Tech Events Weekly features DC area events. I have been sending him the events that I hear about like the event on Super Tuesday . He may very well have got tired of me emailing him that he sat through the night to automate the submission of DC tech events . ( of course I am lying it must have tken him just 4 minutes and 27 seconds to create this submission feature :) ) So the good news is anyone who is organizing a DC area tech event ot know about one please submit the event details at Ross Karchner's Blog

Guess What is the Back cover ?

Guess What is the Back cover ? Originally uploaded by shashiBellamkonda Please comment and tell me : a) What do you guess is the back cover of these magazines? b) What is common to these magazines? Answer Here

ComScore - Top Search Engine Rankings - Dec 2007

COmscore released analysis of the search marketplace . December U.S. Core Search Rankings - Americans generally searched less and the report attributes it as holiday season. - Yahoo sites market share increased. I wonder if Yahoo's successful sites like FLickr are helping this rise. In December, Google Sites’ share of core searches stood at 58.4 percent. Yahoo! Sites ranked second with 22.9 percent, followed by Microsoft Sites (9.8 percent), Time Warner Network (4.6 percent), and Ask Network (4.3 percent). Yahoo! Sites experienced the most significant market share increase, gaining 0.5 share points versus the previous month. Americans conducted 9.6 billion searches at the core search engines, representing a 3.9-percent decline versus November. With many Americans traveling and spending time away from home during the holidays, search activity typically experiences a seasonal decline during December. Google Sites saw 5.6 billion core searches during the month, while Yahoo! Sites re

Want to Read Upside Down -uʍop ǝpısdn pɐǝɹ oʇ ʇuɐʍ

Twitter gives you a chance to try a lot of new stuff. A few days ago I saw DigitalMaverick ( Drew Buddie )Tweet a link and using that link you can turn text upside down . ƃuıʇıɹʍ ɹnoʎ dılɟ oʇ ʎɐʍ looɔ ɐ sı sıɥʇ = this is a cool way to flip your writing. The Website is . You just enter the text in one box and it automatically flips the text. Pretty cool . I have not found a real good reason to use it. May be its useful for printing signs on the back of your car for those following you to read? Anyway a lot of cool things on the Internet may not have a apparent utility value but who knows.

New CEO at Network Solutions – Roy Dunbar

Network Solutions is getting a new CEO W. Roy Dunbar, Champ will continue to be the Chairman. Roy is coming from MasterCard Incorporated, where he was President of Global Technology and Operations. What does one do when you hear about a change in the company? I did what everyone nowadays does – Looked him up on Google. Anyone who has met the Dalai Lama twice in my books is a good guy and I look forward to meeting him and shaking hands with him soon. He met the senior execs at a meeting and a lot of my friends in that group told me they are extremely impressed. Anyone want to bet where I will meet him first? Here are some extracts from articles on Google that that you won’t find in our press release and are very interesting to me: Source :;903685644;fp;4;fpid;4 Dunbar says MasterCard has plenty of good ideas; the question is knowing which ones to pick. Dunbar joined MasterCard two years ago after more than a decade at Eli Lilly. One of the main c

Who is watching Jonny's Par-tay

Yesterday I watched Jonny's Par-tay with this buddy of mine( pic on the left) who showed his appreciation  by saying "Jonny" every 2 seconds. . Jonny had 2 guests and he chose the guests very well because they complimented them selves very well. Ann Bernard the CEO of and Shana Glickfiled (Oops ! I was not supposed to reveal the name a la Valerie Starr style ) who goes by the nom de plume DCConcierge . Both these people are carrying social networking a step further and helping people with their offline lives. WhyGoSolo helps like minded people network and meet even when they travel to different cities and my description is just the iceberg of the depth of what WhyGoSolo does. It just launched as a beta so its a good time to go and become a free member. Jonny also had a guest Arhu (Chinese Violin) performance by Jonny’s house guest Lillian who just flew in from China. The music from this instrument was awesome. DCConcierge helps newcomers and vi

Review of Rockville Crab Place in the Washington post

I am not sure if I am blogging this the wrong blog, but todays review of Rockville Crab Place in the town center was awesome, they make French fries that takes two days to prepare that reminds me of my time as a chef. You should read the Washington post section on the Rockville Town House Crab Place. listen Powered by Jott This was posted on the wrong blog by me using Jott. i should have set it up to go to My Food and restaurant review blog I could setup Jott to post to any blog so I must change the settings now for each blog that I write. Jott is a great service that lets you blog or send emails from your phone by just speaking and the words get transcribed. Chris Pirillo has a great video on Digital Transcription on his blog /

Cruxy- MUX Video Converter

This is a quick post to write about a discovery that is new to me. Very often I struggle when Seesmic asks me to upload videos bit only in flash. On Twitter today @jeffbarr tweeted about Cruxy It seems to be the ideal web based program for converting videos between different formats.

Small Business Technology Summit - Feb 11th New York

I am attending the Small business Tecnology summit in New York on Feb 11th. It is a one day conference. I attended the one last year and the amount of energy at the conference amazed me. A lot of the attendees are small business owners. I met a lot of interesting people. Developed a great friendship with Ramon Ray who is a Small Biz Technology blogger and expert and a contributor to magazines like Entrepreuner. The Small Business Tech Summit Agenda includes keynote by Karen Quintos - Dell Inc.Vice President of Marketing for Small & Medium Business and a lot of panels throughout the day. Its usually so full that you have a Keynote even during lunch :-Bounce! The Path to True Business ConfidenceBarry Moltz, Entrepreneurial Expert, Author, Speaker and Angel Investor. Unless there is a meetup or other reason to stay I am planning to take the Amtrak train the same day and back. Between Dc and NYC its better to take the train. I know because Ihave had to stay overnight twice due to f

Interesting Links for week ending Jan 18th 2008

Blog About Unnecessary Quotation Marks with Pictures Correct Punctuation : Local Political Blogs By State Free weekly podcast/internet radio show about learning and learning disabilities Recipe for Maryland Cream of Crab Soup Local Blog About the Metro Grosvenor Stop on the red line The Coolest Business Cards - Use of Cool Shapes, Textures, Creativity, & Talent Relationship in the Internet World

Movement online to raise funds for the Cancer Society

A few weeks ago I met a local hero Susan Reynolds who is a breast cancer survivor. Susan Reynolds had breast cancer and underwent a mastectomy Dec. 21 followed by reconstructive surgery. Her blog ( ) started a mini movement online and raised funds for the cancer Society ( ). If you like this guy's appeal please donate to the Frozen Peas Fund (In full disclosure the hero in this film is related to me- he is my son ! ): Click on the Donate button at and donate the price of a couple of bags of frozen peas to the American Cancer Society. Make a difference in breast cancer research. The full story in the Washington Post . I think this will make a great story for any local and national media organization and also raise money for a good cause - American Cancer Society. The volunteer press contact for this new organization that sprang up entirely through online friends is : Erin Koteck

Sun buys MySQL

Didn't see that one coming. Blog contains details to what this could mean for both companies. May as well be one of the most important takeovers of 2008 already! Sun has a unenviable position of having their software being used in millions of applications but they are not a Wall Street fav. Wonder what this does to their share price.Disclosure: I have a few (less than 101 shares of SUN) read more | digg story

Good news ! - Network Solutions is getting better

It’s nice to see at least a few positive statements from our well meaning critic. Jay Westerdal has a good word and titles his latest post “ Network Solutions is getting better ”. Let me take this opportunity and reiterate some of the enhancements we have made: No domain searched in the WHOIS page is reserved. Only Domains searched on the homepage and domain product page will be reserved. Additional customer notification has been added to the homepage. Reserved domains are not publicly available in the zone file (thanks for confirming Jay!) Word from us - We will continue to monitor and make enhancements and we are listening to feedback. Along with Jay we have received feedback on Blogs, privately and other Social media channels and in comments on this blog. Thank you very much everyone for joining the conversation. If you care to Digg – direct link to DIGG : .

Dec Energy Bill - Congress bans incandescent bulbs- But do not drop CFL bulbs

I did hear that the Energy Bill passed in Dec and I was estatic that such a positive bill was passed well before the holidays. Today during my downtime I was very preturbed to read Steve Forbes Article in the latest issue if Forbes (Jan 28th) " Each CFL bulb contains about 5 milligrams of mercury, a highly toxic and indestructible substance. It's like bulbs with asbestos. Billions of these bulbs will be everywhere. If one drops and breaks, you've got a problem, especially if you have small kids or pets roaming around." Forbes also asks "if CFLs are so great, why do we need a law to force us to buy 'em?" While researching this issue I saw this article that Forbes Refers to in his article . Brandy Bridges a resident of Maine was given an estimate of $2000 to clean up the increased mercury levels due to a broken CFL bulb. The website of EnergyStar gives the following instructions if a CFL breaks: How should I clean up a broken fluorescent bulb? The

NPR and Music Website

NPR has a seemingly new website NPRMusic that has a amazingly large number of music and podcasts. Marc Fisher wrote about it in the Washington Post today. When I conducted an unofficial poll on Twitter about listening to NPR an amazing 78% listen to NPR. I just atarted following Jeff @goOrange on Twitter who says " I'm a huge fan of NPR, and a fan of podcasts. has 596 podcasts linked on their site. Ack! Information overload" Time will tell. But its a great initiative from NPR. Congratulations !

Teens and Social Media: PEW Internet Report

I have a great respect for the Pew Internet & American Life Project. They do great surveys and their research results are usually available for free. The latest report in the Series : Family Friends & Community - Teens & Social Media talks about the teens activity in the Social media. Read the full report for details. Some interesting points in the report : 64% of online teenagers ( ages 12 to 17 ) engaging in at least one type of content creation online. Girls Blog more : Some 35% of all teen girls blog, compared with 20% of online boys Photos: 54% of wired girls post photos online compared with 40% of online boys Boys lead in Posting Videos: teen boys are nearly twice as likely as online girls (19% vs. 10%) to have posted a video online Super Communicators: There is a subset of teens who are super-communicators -- teens who have a host of technology options for dealing with family and friends, including traditional landline phones, cell phones, texting, social netw

Listening to the Conversation

I used my personal blog yesterday to open a line of communication and also to collect feedback. Thanks to everyone who chipped in. Never thought I would be called colorful names in some comments. All the social media gurus told me that becoming a blogger means you are totally out in the open. I believe that now. I want to, however, take a step back and clear the confusion on a few terms: - Whois is a service available with reputed registrars and people use that to search for information on who owns a domain. Network Solutions doesn’t provide the only access to this info. Wikipedia link: - Price: Network Solutions regular price for a domain is $34.99 for one year’s registration. The domains we are protecting from front runners are available for purchase at that regular price -- not for any inflated prices as falsely reported. - - Advice to people registering domains. Wherever you search - register the name, as soon as you see the name is available.

Clarifying Changes in Network Solutions Domain Search

I saw @andybobs post on Twitter this morning and want to make sure he gets some answers. I met with some internal folks to find out what was happening. Andy’s post said: “Hey I think NETWORK SOLUTIONS, LLC. are registering domains typed into their website !!! “ I found out that we have started protecting all domain name searches at Network Solutions by holding the searched domains for our customers for a short period of time before releasing them. This gives our customers the opportunity to register names later without fear that the name will be registered by a “Front Runner.”(Have posted some background info on ” Front Running “ below). We did this because we heard customers complain that queried domain names are being snatched up by other people as soon as they searched. Network Solutions makes sure its search data is secure and we do not sell it any third party. I know that Network Solutions has no intention of keeping any searched domain or monetizing it. Over this past weekend I

Cell phone charged & a 45 min commute ahead. Anyone want to call?

I have met some amazing people on Twitter and many from the DC area both online and offline. Social Media seems to be a nation of people who will connect and help. I enjoy conversations and got his idea from Chris Brogan who I spoke to when he posted his "Call Chris" Twitter. I must say I admired his bravado putting his phone number out in public. He explains his "Call Chris: post on his blog - A conversation with a Community about Digital Relationships . Three weeks ago I saw @ikepigott do the same and called him. Ike is with the Red Cross and is mentioned in the book Now is Gone . I have a 45 minute commute and decided today to try it myself . Linda Sherman called and I spoke to her and her husband Ray Gordon.  Did you know Linda worked in Japan for a long time and has had a great variety of experience internationally. They live in the beautiful island of Kauai. Linda is Singelringen agent for North America, and I posted my curios

Tweetup with Susan Reynolds in Herndon Thu 10th Jan 6.30 p.m

This was kind of spontaneous from Saturday. We have always been thinking of meeting and we were Twittering about meeting in Herndon between @SusanReynolds @Jeffhibbard and the choice was Jimmy's Tavern . The meetup announcement attracted several offers of attendance . Either it was due to Susan Reynolds celebrity as Second Life Expert and expert in the power of viral web marketing / communications. Jeff Hibbard's great enthusiasm & possibly owning the first " vlog truck " or Jimmy's Tavern reputation as a great watering hole. Jimmy Critto is a member of the Bar Tender magazine's Hall of Fame. We now have 21 possible attendees. Thanks everyone, look forward to seeing you there. By the way Jeff Hibbard is coordinating all the arrangements at Jimmy's - Thanks - Jeff. Susan is undergoing treatment for cancer and blogged about it . That brave gesture got everyone to rally around her using text, voice, images, video and form the Frozen Pea Fund which ra

Twitter is a awesome tool for conversation

Twitter has a lot of following - over 700k users. I get asked about "Twitter" and want to provide some basic info. As I was looking for resources I found a lot of people have written awesome twitter guides. You can skip the next few paragraphs and go directly to the links below for Twitter guides. Twitter if free. You to to and signup. Most people have a picture a URL to their website or blog and 160 characters worth of information about themselves. A first time user of Twitter will find it difficult to understand Twitter and may give up easily as the Public Timeline will not make sense at a glance. If you walk into a large room where there are several conversations going on simultaneously the feeling is the same. How to you join the party? Just like you would in the real world. Find a conversation that interests you and follow it. As you look at more and more "Tweets" ( The updates you make on Twitter which are limited to 140 characters) you will f

Crazy Eight for ‘08 - 8 things about me Meme

I got tagged for "Eight Things You Didn't Know About Me" Meme by Geoff Livingston . It is interesting to read the other posts about Crazy Eight for '08 Meme. I blame Geoff for making me spill the beans! 1. I was born in India . I went back to my ancestral village this year to connect with my roots again. In school and college I edited the student magazine and organized festivals. 2. I lived in Russia for 3 years . It was funny that I went to the USSR /Soviet union in 1989 and came back from Russia in 1992. 3. I used to be a chef in my previous life.I wrote recipe columns for several newspapers.I was featured several times on a radio show Radio Maximum "Moscow in the Morning " Chef's corner hosted by Cami McCormick one of the first English-language radio hosts. ( Very few have seen this picture previously:) ) Cami works for CBS in New York now and is currently reporting from Pakistan on assignment. My dream is to one day start a company for