How Do I Know that Google+ is Brilliant? Well It Just Ate My Weekend!

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jul 4, 2011 in Tech


As an old time BBS user I tend to be cynical about every new site that comes along, but not only did Google+ impress me — but it passed the ultimate test: It just ate most of my weekend. On the surface the program seems like a slightly updated version of Facebook, but as you begin to explore and really live with the program you start to realize that it’s so much more than that. Read more…

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Mixi Makes Manga New Year’s Cards

Posted by Michael Pinto on Nov 29, 2010 in Comic Books, Tech

Mixi Manga New Year's Cards - Nodame Cantabile

Pity us poor anime and manga fans who have to settle for mere Facebook for in Japan the social media service Mixi will be rolling out a series of premium manga themed new year’s cards for 2011. Included in the series is Nodame Cantabile (shown above) and Moyashimon (shown below). By the way sadly for us Gaijin signing up Mixi requires a Japanese cell phone.

Mixi Manga New Year's Cards - Moyashimon Read more…

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How Digg Became Unsocial: A Potential History of How It Happened

Posted by Michael Pinto on Aug 26, 2010 in Tech

reddit vs digg

Digg Logo

After many years of joy today was a sad day for me: My ranking as a power user on the website Digg has killed. I didn’t do too badly as I was in the top 300 — although since the elimination of shouts on the site I found my interest in Digg going down hill. And today the nail in my coffin was the launch of version 4 of the formaly social news website. Many power users have now been given a online version of a fatal dose of Kryptonite, so for my own sake I’ve attempted to reverse engineer why Digg ditched their community once and for all: Read more…

Tags: , Proof That Hollywood Doesn’t Get Social Media

Posted by Michael Pinto on Mar 5, 2010 in Star Trek, Tech

At first your reaction to which is a social networking site for sci fi fans might be that it was lifted from the pages of The Onion, but alas this is no parody. And what breaks my heart is that because J.J. Abrams didn’t give William Shatner a well deserved cameo in the last film is that now he’s been forced to get involved in second rate projects like this one. Read more…

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Google Buzz: A Deft Analysis from Digg’s Kevin Rose

Posted by Michael Pinto on Feb 12, 2010 in Tech

google-buzz-iconKevin Rose is famous for Digg, which has lost a bit of steam to Google when it comes to breaking news. However any illusions one might have had that Rose was on a siesta can’t be dispelled when you watch his take on why Google integrated Buzz into Gmail. To sum up Rose has the following interesting insights: Read more…

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Emoticon Sushi Rolls to Replace Twitter

Posted by Michael Pinto on Feb 11, 2010 in Fandom, Japanese TV, Tech

EmoticonSure everybody is making a fuss over Google Buzz, but the minute I watched this Emoticon Sushi Roll video by vlogger Taro I knew that I was looking at the next big thing in social media. When he’s not reinventing web 2.0 Taro has a YouTube channel which introduces folks to Japanese cooking. Being an artist my favorite dish is his Edvard Munch tribute: Read more…

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How To Kill Serial Retweeters

Posted by Michael Pinto on Nov 22, 2009 in Tech

How to Kill Retweets

Anyone who uses the Twitter retweet functionality to do anything but share something of value is spamming your tweetstream. In fact I’d even go further and say that anyone who retweets more than once a day is a spammer. But sadly there are so many newbies on Twitter that common sense can be lacking, so here’s my tutorial on how to shut off serial retweeters: Read more…

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Viral Video Maker Mocked by His Apathetic Cat

Posted by Michael Pinto on Nov 2, 2009 in Tech

Keyboard CatNo I didn’t swipe that headline from The Onion: The subtle genius of this video is that it’s the perfect “man bites dog story” and speaks volumes about social media — if you’re willing to look under the surface. I’m a big believer that humor actually can sometimes tell us more about what’s going on than a straight news story: And this is why I always make it a point to never ignore what Loren Feldman has to say about the tech scene. Read more…



Twitter Invades Comic Books!

Posted by Michael Pinto on Oct 7, 2009 in Comic Books, Tech

Forgetless #1 (Of 5) features Tweets!

Twitter IconEventually life imitates art, or is it the other way around? The first issue of Forgetless by Image Comics features Twitter tweets on the first page intermixed with the rest of the action. This ties into the story which starts out at a nightclub in New York City and features a struggling model turned professional killer (although that sounds more like the type of stalker you’d meet on MySpace). Here’s the page from the issue: Read more…

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{ twitter } What are ‘Curly Brackets’ and when to use them?

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jul 3, 2009 in Tech

{ social media } Introducing #curlybrackets a typographical technique for twitter

Having previously used several social media websites I faced a dilemma when I first started using Twitter: My problem was that several unique groups of people who had very different focuses were following me on Twitter. And Added to that is that I’m a linkaholic who loves to share breaking news and offbeat stories. Read more…

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Is Cable News Twittering Past the Graveyard? A Little Birdie Told Me…

Posted by Michael Pinto on Apr 17, 2009 in Tech

The JFK assassination was the point when newspapers stopped breaking news...

On November 22, 1963 along with President Kennedy newspapers received their first fatal wound and they’ve been slowly fading ever since. Most people learned of the assassination of JFK via their TV set or radio — and ever since then newspapers have broken less-and-less news each year. Smugly watching this death march has been broadcast and later cable television news. At a certain point the money, power and glamour shifted from print to the small screen and along with that came a certain sense of hubris that we see today. Read more…

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Deciphering Digg: Itchy Trigger Finger and the DiggBar

Posted by Michael Pinto on Apr 4, 2009 in Tech

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Disclaimer: Reverse engineering the mechanisms of Digg is always a guessing game — and a hard one because Digg is always changing the rules of that game to stay one step ahead of spammers. So everything in this article is just my speculation — it’s not a “how-to get to the front page” methodology.

Digg LogoNot too long ago (around February) Digg cracked down on power users by limiting the number of diggs in a 24 hour period. Now this isn’t a science but after 150 or so diggs a user would be greeted by the warning “Whoa there cowboy! Itchy trigger finger? Digging fast is so lame. How about reading some stories instead?” Now notice that last line about “reading some stories instead” — it’s always been my theory that while Digg never prints a rulebook that they always give your humorous hints as to how to succeed on Digg in their interface design. Read more…

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Something is Technically Wrong: That’s Not a Bug, It’s a Feature!

Posted by Michael Pinto on Mar 24, 2009 in Tech

Twitter: Something is Technically Wrong — Retro Doom Edition

Twitter: Something Is Technically Wrong - that cute robot we all hateBeing on Twitter every day I’m always reminded of the web 2.0 mantra that software should always be in beta — so being creative I started to wonder “why not take this to the next level and turn a bug into a feature?” Having some game design experience I know that having fun negative payoff can be much more entertaining than actually winning a game sometimes. So I applied this logic to the now familiar “Something is Technically Wrong” illustration and have come up with a series of customized versions which I propose that Twitter adapt right away. Sadly knowing that Twitter is now mainstream I’ve designed these screens to appeal to original core audience of geeks who may feel abandoned as every brain dead TV presenter boasts of their account on the air:

Twitter: Something is Technically Wrong — The Shining Edition Read more…

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Grandma Just Added You! Boomers Invade Social Media…

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jan 29, 2009 in Tech

Absolutely Fabulous! Boomers to invade social media...

If you’re a geek and you’re reading this, to you social media is old news — which is why it’s now mainstream (and about to get worse). But first a history lesson: The real story behind the sucess of MySpace and Facebook is that they were sites NOT aimed at geeks — unlike so many Web 1.0 hubs the real appeal of this first generation of these Web 2.0 sites is that they allowed a younger demographic to organize their real world activities. As an example MySpace empowered Gen Y to see their favorite band or to meet their classmates before moving into the form on Facebook. Yet there was still a generational barrier in place that has only slowly been crumbling lead by elder techies and creatives. Read more…



Social Media “Experts” are the Cancer of Twitter (and Must Be Stopped)

Posted by Michael Pinto on Jan 20, 2009 in Tech

Night of the Living Dead (1968)

Nearly a day goes by on Twitter without yet another social media “expert” choosing to stalk me. At first it started innocently — back in the day (about a year ago) various techie friends started to declare themselves social media gurus because they decided to hang out on Twitter and Facebook all day. And now an army of their offspring monitor Summize in search of human flesh. Read more…

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