To be or not to be on Facebook Timeline

According to Facebook statistics, there are over 800 million people on Facebook. The average user is “connected to 80 community pages, groups, and events” and “on average, more than 250 million photos are uploaded per day.”

To say that Facebook is a social phenomenon is an understatement, and yet Facebook strives to get people more and  more involved with its ever-webbing social network.

Facebook Timeline is the latest endeavor to fuse real with online as users’ life stories are told though the network they spend so much time on. According to PCMAG.com’s Jill Duffy, Facebook Timeline “is a section of a Facebook user’s account that replaces the Profile and Wall pages, and merges them together.” It’s like a blog in that as you scroll down, you get older Facebook actions and posts. It also groups your apps together, so that it automatically posts in Timeline any activities you do with your apps. The aim is to make all Facebook-associated actions into a chronological timeline that essentially is the user’s life story.

Facebook’s understanding behind this move is to improve upon its already extensive interaction with its users. Timeline does this by rewarding people who are more active on Facebook. The more active users are the ones who post more frequently, and since active users have more active news feeds, it’s difficult to access older posts that may be buried under hundreds of other posts. According to Facebook, Timeline solves this problem by letting active users “rediscover the things you shared, and collect all your best moments in a single place.”

Now, while Facebook may see Timeline as a reward to its users, not everyone is happy. While users can access Timeline now, it will soon be mandatory for all Facebook users to have it. News organizations like NPR point out that many don’t want “to experience the joy of oversharing.” Opening your all past actions on Facebook to the world draws warranted privacy concerns that all Facebook users will be subjected to.

In an effort to address these concerns, Facebook has instituted a seven-day trial period, from the day the user gets Timeline to the day the user’s Timeline goes public, to review and edit their timeline and privacy settings to their liking. After the seven-day trial period, the user cannot opt out of Facebook Timeline, and a timeline cannot be unpublished. The Timeline will replace a user’s wall, but the newsfeed will remain as it was before. At any point in time, users can delete or edit their timeline in addition to adding new events.

Facebook has not said at what date Timeline will become mandatory, but it is rumored to be February or early March 2012. At that time, Facebook users will have to decide whether to accept the mandatory feature or discontinue their relationship with Facebook.

Advertisements

Facebook Creep Factor

Where is the line? How far is Facebook allowed to go before its users decide enough is enough? It’s no doubt that age has its place with how users are concerned with their data being collected and saved. The younger generations of users has grown up in the data driven environment and are willing to sell their information, likes and interests for constant communication with ones friends. At what point do the users decide how their information is being used or collected as creepy? This is very important for the social media outlets to discover, because its necessary to determine at what point is it TOO much.

According to an Ad Age article, Facebook made up 52% of sharing in 2011. In fact, the new Facebook Timeline feature (which will be mandatory for the millions of users) will issue information more publicly to allow users to share their information easier, according to a Fox News article by John Quain. Quain even makes the point that “so if it’s illegal for the government to secretly track you, consumers should ask themselves, why isn’t illegal for businesses to do it?“ How convenient and nice of Facebook!

The Take This Lollipop video provides a creepy, fictional account that strikes fear in many who can see the negative aspects of social media. However, it’s these type of fictional portrayal of “social media gone wrong” can turn off the older crowd of users deeming social media as too public or creepy.

Located within the Facebook Privacy Policy is all the necessary information to realize what Facebook does with users data. This puts users at a decision point. Should users continue to allow the creepy activity of taking their information and posts, but continue to utilize the social connection with their friends or risk leaving the social network. Older generations fearing what COULD happen with their information being leaked are more likely to dump the account out.

While Facebook is working to continue to utilize the information posted by its users, it will also monitor how to stay just close enough to the “creep” line and collecting the information of its users, but not too close to drive the traffic away. This line is most important in determine how to keep the interest and “trust” of the younger generations of users. Sure, they might lose some older generation users, but they are not the future. It’s most important to keep in good relations with the younger generation users.

A study by Goldfarb and Tucker, According to Technology, Age and Privacy Concerns, shows patterns of how age is tied in with privacy concerns. This study took  over 3 million surveys conducted by a market research group over an 8 year period to develop their findings. Goldfarb and Tucker found that people refusing to reveal private information online has risen over time and that older individuals are less likely to reveal information than younger generations out of privacy concerns.

A Nielsen blog post shows the relation between phone application use and the concern of privacy by age.

An article in The Joplin Globe, Consumer Confidential: Facebook shows how privacy is passe, shows how privacy issues are divided amongst the generations. The younger generations “…can’t get enough social-media sauce on their cyber-sandwich. They view this technology not as an intrusion but as a life enhancement”. While the older generations, 30 and older, are more likely to pay close attention to privacy settings and what is put out into the open. This article shows the generational divide of how Facebook users react to the “creep” factor and bolster up the privacy settings.

According to a Wall Street Journal article, Facebook in Privacy Breach,

“the information being transmitted is one of Facebook’s basic building blocks: the unique “Facebook ID” number assigned to every user on the site. Since a Facebook user ID is a public part of any Facebook profile, anyone can use an ID number to look up a person’s name, using a standard Web browser, even if that person has set all of his or her Facebook information to be private. For other users, the Facebook ID reveals information they have set to share with “everyone,” including age, residence, occupation and photos.” The full details of the Facebook Privacy Policy is shown below.

So, with facebook’s new privacy policies, timeline features and amount of information ALWAYS made public, how does this fit in with the creep factor? Knowing your information is out on the web, does this creep you out? Surely, not enough to actually deactivate your account. Right?


Google+ – All Your Social Media in One Neat, Little Package

What is Google+? If you’re like me, you probably think that it’s a Facebook rip off. If that’s what you think, you’re mostly right. Google+ is Google’s latest attempt in hopping on the social media bandwagon. Google’s goal is to make the things that we already do easier.

Have you ever posted a status about your crazy night out on Facebook, only to get a call from Grandma? Well, Google+ tries to eliminate that embarrassing mishap. It allows its members and users to group your friends together in “circles” such as family, work, college, etc. By creating these “circles,” you can share information with the appropriate group of people.

Google+ also has a system that sends the user content that it thinks you would like based on the “add interest” button. It basically is like the Facebook “like” button, except that information is used to send you content that you might find interesting.

Google+ also came up with a modern day chat room, you know, the infamous rooms that AOL created? Google+’s version of these rooms is called “huddles” and is an expansion on Facebook messaging.

The goal of Google+ is to make what you already do easier by not making you go to 10 different sites. Basically, Google+ allows you to text, Skype, Tweet, send a photo and arrange a party all in one site.

In theory it makes sense. Who wouldn’t want a one-stop shop for everything social media? The problem with this is that I think Google+ was a little late to the party. People become really “brand” or “website” loyal when it comes their social media and it takes a lot to get them to switch. A review of Google+ said “I kept running into the same problem – there was no one in the sandbox but me.” Google+ is having a little trouble populating its social media network because Facebook and Skype are already so intertwined in our lives.

As I perused reviews of Google+, I kept getting the same information. I kept reading that people that it was a neat idea, could be helpful and that Google is really on the right track, but that they just don’t think the general public is ready for it yet.

I agree with that. I think Google is on the threshold of something great, but they need the public to get on board. I’ll give my opinion on this. I think that once there are too many things for people to work with, they will start moving toward using Google+. The idea makes sense. Put all of the stuff I use daily (or hourly, whatever) in one neat little package and let me go from there. The problem is that I am not annoyed that I have to go to Twitter, Facebook and Skype to get my social networking done. When I do, I would think about moving to Google+.


metrics [ME-triks] -noun

metrics [ME-triks] -noun

  • the application of statistics and mathematical analysis to a field of study.
  • a combining form with the meaning “the science of measuring,” that specified by the initial element: biometrics; econometrics.

It sounds like a science, but it is really an art.

Often times, when we are discussing metrics (or web analytics) we are talking about more than just numbers, raw measurement or statistics. Metrics involve the interpretation of of data.

Look at google analytics and you will see the type of data that most people think of when you say [web] “metrics:” Visits, Unique Visitors, Pageviews, Pages/Visit, Avg. Time on Site, Bounce Rate, New Visits, Location, Language, Network, Traffic Sources, Site Speed, Searches, Sales, etc.

This type of information can be helpful on its own, but it is largely one-dimensional. Raw statistics loose significance without context. Good metrics are defined in terms of strategy. What is our goal and what kind of specific statistics indicate success? A statistic like unique visits may be less important than net sales for a business like CustomInk.com that is a totally online operation. The opposite may be true if you are Coca-Cola and your website is more for branding purposes, not sales.

To add dimension to the numbers, metrics can also be constructed in the form of an equation or an aggregation of data. These analytics express valuable but subjective concepts such as loyalty, engagement, and virality. Take Facebook Insights relatively recent introduction of two new metrics: Weekly Total Reach and People Talking About This Total reach refers to the number of unique individuals who saw any content related to your page. People Talking About This combines all likes, posts, check-ins, mentions, etc.

These simplified metrics reflect data that Facebook considers important. However, it is always important to dig deeper in order avoid “measurement inversion.” This is when metrics seem to emphasize what organizations find immediately measurable — even if those are low value — and tend to ignore high value measurements simply because they seem harder to measure (whether they are or not). For example, while Facebook is more interested in measuing the overall “conversation” surrounding a given page, an individual business may be more interested in investigating a particular element, such as check-ins, if that metrics relates to an ongoing promotion.

Today, metrics are evolving quickly. Batch metrics (collected daily, hourly, etc.) were once the standard. Now, many companies demand real-time metrics, especially when it comes to social media. Advertising metrics that drive much of the value online are constantly being tweaked in an attempt to more accurately reflect the true worth of a given ad. Code metrics that calculate how efficient a program or script is running can get very complicated but are essential for optimizing web performance.

For our purposes, we will most likely be dealing with metrics in the social graph. You can think of it as metrics 2.0 [or, even 3.0] . The key distinction between basic web analytics and metics in the social graph are relationships. How are things (both “individuals” and “objects”) related to one another ? These types of interrelationships can be conceptualized by sociograms and emphasize choices and preferences.

Social network analysis software (SNA software) facilitates both quantitative and qualitative analysis of social networks by describing features of a network, either through numerical or visual representation. We now have much more data than we know what to do with. Creatively identifying how to interpret the information is the tricky part. This is why we often see larger, more established internet companies buying up analytics start-ups who have an interesting twist on interpreting different types of data.

The first step for each of our companies is to identify a goal. Next, we must find out what data is available and investigate what types of relationships can indicate success.

And always remember, if you don’t measure it, you cannot optimize it.


Facebook Apps Privacy Settings History

Since facebook started gaining all of its massive popularity in the last few years, its privacy settings have changed to “reflect society’s trends toward becoming more open,” according to AllFacebook, the unofficial facebook resource. When third-party applications started being utilized on facebook, apps such as “When will I get married?” and Pandora, these apps asked permission to access your account. This permission, if granted, gave the application access to ANY of the information on your facebook, or information on other people’s facebook pages about you. Facebook previously stated that it does, in no way, screen or approve Platform Developers, and does not control what information these apps get or how they use it. Basically, facebook took no responsibility for the apps that it allows to be hosted on its’ website. However, facebook has been sued numerous times for violating privacy laws, and has since changed the privacy settings for apps. They have not changed it in a big way, mostly just the language of how the settings are phrased, because the apps still access your information. The privacy policy concerning third-party applications now says that “In order to provide you with useful social experiences off of Facebook, we occasionally need to provide General Information about you to pre-approved third party websites and applications that use Platform at the time you visit them (if you are still logged in to Facebook). Similarly, when one of your friends visits a pre-approved website or application, it will receive General Information about you so you and your friend can be connected on that website as well (if you also have an account with that website). In these cases we require these websites and applications to go through an approval process, and to enter into separate agreements designed to protect your privacy…You can disable instant personalization on all pre-approved websites and applications using your Applications and Websites privacy setting. You can also block a particular pre-approved website or application by clicking “No Thanks” in the blue bar when you visit that application or website. In addition, if you log out of Facebook before visiting a pre-approved application or website, it will not be able to access your information.” Oh great. Facebook was supposed to update the privacy policy to protect user’s information, but it seems that all they’ve done is change the wording of the policy, because it still collects my information, as well as my friends’ information.

Facebook explains away why it is important to have access to your information and you friends list, to “make your experience more social.” But the truth is, these apps, that you have no idea who created them or for what reason, have you and your friends information. Apps request your permission before you can use them, and sometimes allow you to choose what information you share with them, but the majority of these apps do not let you choose, or require that you provide all of your info.

Facebook does now give the option to turn off all applications, but if you’re addicted to Farmville, this may be a problem. Users like facebook because they can experience a variety of apps for free, and app developers like using this idea to their advantage. And why should they not use this information? If people are putting it out there, we might as well find good uses for it. I am sure that not all the apps on facebook are using our information for good, but Really Gets Me is here to save the day and find ways for clients to really get the most out of being creepy. We have to embrace the fact that facebook and its posse access our information, because really, what is private anymore these days? Also, below is a history of how facebook’s privacy settings have changed since 2005.

 

Facebook Privacy History Infographic


Google Search Plus Your World

To ‘Google’ something is now common lexicon.  Some of us remember the time there was no such thing as Google searching – I’m not one of those people.  And I’m usually not on the cutting edge of information technology, or else I’d own boedeker@gmail.com or even jboedeker@gmail.com. But that’s about to change, Google Search Plus Your World (SPYW)  is the next step beyond your traditional search, and I’m fully cognizant of it. Google SPYW determines what is relevant in search queries influenced by a person’s groups, friends, and past searches. The company aims to personalize your results by including more Google+ Profiles, business pages, posts and Google+ and Picasa Photos. You must be signed in with Google Plus to use SPYW.  Therefore, if you’re not fond of Google+, tough luck, your search results will not be personalized.

So basically, as of now, Google has worked rather methodically in its algorithms of crawling the web during web searches. With Google SPYW, there is no longer a wide net.  There is a proxy of YOU crawling and grabbing and dodging trillions of words and photos and videos that are and aren’t relevant.  It does this by surfacing content that has been shared with you on Google+, as well as public information from its social networking site, and integrates this data into typical Web search results.

With SPYW, your friends’ online experiences are more relevant to your personal search results than links and domain authority. However, if your search results end up not being relevant, you may have your friends to unthank, unlike, or un+.  Google+ has a new feature that not only helps you make new friends with similar tastes and ideas, but also ones that will help you search the web. Yep, a twofer.  The feature allows searchers to start a conversation directly from search results, with their friends, and contribute to the conversation through Google+ stream.

There are three types of Google+ data that will show up in your SPYW results:

  • -Personal results: includes data from your own photos and posts, as well as Google+ data that has been shared with you.
  • -Profiles in search: more Google+ profiles appearing in your search results.
  • -Profiles and Pages: results from Google+ business pages and notable Google+users.

I hear the libertarians marching!  Put those torches and pitchforks down – no one will know what your searching for and what phrase you used (well except for you and Google, at least for now – they donʼt wanna creep us out too quickly). I guess after writing that, you can keep only the torches lit, and use them only for nonviolent castle wandering.  With SPYW your results are hidden behind http:// and no keywords will be linked to your search in any analytics program. If you are super creeped by this, or feel your personal liberties are being violated, there is a new opt-out feature that is available to all users searching Google in English. And you if want to go ahead and adjust your search settings you can here.

Although this may seem like a great idea to some, there has been serious criticism saying they are making its search relevancy worse and favoring their Google Plus social network too much. To some, itʼs frowned upon that the company is using their popularity as a search engine provider to promote its social network by prioritizing Google+ data. Even though the site is expected to have more than 400 million users  by the end of 2012 and 625,000 members are signing up everyday (which may be in part of the 700,000 Android devices sold everyday, which makes signing up for Google Plus easier). Makes me wonder if we’re being manufactured to Google’s will, just as their leading product is labeled, like an android.  Iʼm interested in seeing how this personalized search engine will work out, both the benefits of this new frontier in internet searches, as well as the controversy that is sure to surface.


Gulf Stream

Sites all over the world, 6 continents- and even Savannah, Ga. Gulf Stream carries various new and used G- series jets and parts. The G- series maybe you’ve heard of them, quite frankly whenever someone is talking private jets assume the G- series from Gulf Stream. They own -and sell of course- the fastest civil aircraft in the world as well as the longest traveling non-stop blah blah blah-

Whats interesting is Gulf Stream prides themselves on being first to the market with technology that meets or exceeds customer expectation. Gulf Stream is also “committed to technology that envisions the future.” So here goes our shot.

Constituency:

Gulf Stream has a long running tradition with all 5 branches of military & the government. The military uses Gulf Stream planes to carry out various “special missions” and the governments of the world use Gulf Stream to transport their various heads of state. Gulf stream also appeals to private pilots and many Fortune 500 corporate operators.

Innovative Tech: Gulf Stream has various interactive technological “product enhancements”

PlaneConnect:

Excellent Flight Perfomance Starts From The Ground, Up
From takeoff to landing and the incredible flight in between, the best way to monitor your aircraft’s performance is when it is doing just that, performing. PlaneConnect™ is a highly advanced system that transmits reports on your aircraft to experts on the ground all while you’re still comfortably in the air. By providing an automatic update of the condition of your aircraft during flight, PlaneConnect enables speedy resolution of any maintenance issues which may arise. Not only does the aircraft report active faults, it also identifies which system and in many cases which component is at fault. Crew Advisory System (CAS) messages along with Maintenance Messages are downlinked automatically via the PlaneConnect report as soon as the aircraft starts its descent to its destination. The report is then distributed via e-mail to whoever on your team may need the information.


Remote Fault Diagnosis
The level of redundancy in the aircraft means that a fault does not have to be acted on immediately, but with PlaneConnect on board there is an accurate report of what system has reported a fault. Analysis of that fault can occur on the ground as soon as its received. Remote diagnosis of a problem and ordering of replacement components can be accomplished while the aircraft is in flight, improving not only aircraft availability but also dispatch reliability.

Aircraft Health Monitoring
Operators can elect to have their PlaneConnect reports sent to Gulfstream Technical Operations where computers review the reports automatically upon receipt and highlight issues needing attention to specialists. All this happens within minutes of the aircraft sending out its report – regardless of where in the world it may be operating. The specialists review as many as 100 PlaneConnect reports per day and can identify actionable maintenance messages very quickly. In some cases, the aircraft has performed as expected with no issues on the flight deck, yet some maintenance messages are received. In these cases, further maintenance investigation has revealed issues which were not apparent to the crew but do need to be resolved when schedule permits. If Technical Operations has been provided access to your aircraft’s position information or you have requested Flight Following, parts stock locations near the aircraft’s destination are alerted to the need for a part. Parts are only shipped with your approval.

Fleet Information
As well as resolving individual aircraft issues and monitoring aircraft health, Gulfstream utilizes the information from the PlaneConnect fleet to identify new trends with system reliability so that investigations can be ordered sooner and fleet corrective actions implemented faster. Your aircraft information is stored for a limited time and then any association with the individual aircraft is removed. The de-identified data is then used for fleet statistics comparisons. Your individual aircraft information is not made available outside Gulfstream or its supplier base.

PlaneBook

Carrying, Using and Maintaining Your Pilot’s Manuals
Just Got Smaller – Faster – Better

PlaneBookPlaneBook™ is the newest advance in flight deck information architecture, providing numerous enhancements both in and out of the cockpit. Engineered by Gulfstream pilots and technical writers, PlaneBook provides the ultimate paperless cockpit solution.

Go paperless with intelligently-linked documents that provide simple and fast navigation across the complete suite of pilot’s manuals.

Planebook is available for both Windows and iPad. Select a platform below for more information.

Now for our class. For pilots: Create a competition among private pilots, whether commissioned to fly for a Fortune 500 company, the gov’t, or any private jet owner.

Display Flight patterns. Since pilots fly various jets, how does each handle the various lengthy or short trips? How fast did pilot get to destination? How much gas used? How many stops? How many hours logged in air?

Gulf Stream should provide incentives or awards to push for quality competition and ensure they have the best pilots & create the best jets in the world… as they claim. What better advertisement could there possibly be?

USER [pilot] ACTION [flying] OBJECT [jet]