195 Articles for 'Web 2.0'

  1. 2007/10/02 A day in the (digital) life of a South Korean boy (1)
  2. 2007/09/24 Qbox takes music search to a whole new level (2)
  3. 2007/09/21 Oladay is a new flash lifelog (2)
  4. 2007/09/20 Internet Traffic Swells on Web 2.0
  5. 2007/09/20 TC40 and the importance of being a M. Night Shamalan
  6. 2007/09/17 Can you imagine Vodafone launching a Twitter clone? (2)
  7. 2007/09/12 Kia Buzz - the latest addition to a corporate PR blog (4)
  8. 2007/09/10 Quote of the day
  9. 2007/09/04 UCCddl is location-based content syndication service
  10. 2007/09/04 Facebook is popular in ASEAN too (2)

A day in the (digital) life of a South Korean boy

Web 2.0 | 2007/10/02 00:41 | Web 2.0 Asia
My contribution for CNN, titled "A day in the (digital) life of a South Korean boy", was featured on a special section called "Eye on South Korea". Some exceprt:
Insoo Kim, 14, is a typical junior high school student in Seoul. Like all his classmates, Insoo's main means of communication with his buddies is text messaging.

Insoo doesn't even have to take the phone out of his pocket to send an SMS. He knows how to slide it open, which buttons to push how many times to reach the "Send SMS" menu option, compose the entire text message, and hit the send button -- all without even looking at the phone. This is especially handy when he needs to send an SMS during class.

Yes, some Korean kids do can send an SMS without looking. You can check out the rest of the article here.

TAG CNN, Korea

Qbox takes music search to a whole new level

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/24 15:17 | Web 2.0 Asia

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Qbox is a service that lets users find music embedded on web pages. In Korea, many blog and Cyworld users have background music embedded on their sites. Qbox indexes the metadata regarding which pages contain which embedded songs. So when someone trying to find music types in the song's title on Qbox music search, Qbox directs the user to the pages that have set the song as background music.  

Now Qbox extends their search target to non-Korean sites as well - namely Youtube, Google, Myspace, and Wikipedia. User can enter a song title and see which Myspace or Youtube pages have that song as background music or contain outbound links to that song.

Using Qbox, services like Myspace effectively double up as a free online jukebox. In the mood for the late Luciano Pavaroti? Type in Pavaroti on Qbox, see the list of Myspace sites that have selected Pavaroti as background music, and click to enjoy away license-free music. 

Qbox also offers a set of browser extension, with which users can mark up a specific part of their web pages and embed links to music files. Qbox has many other features too - perhaps it would be best to visit their "quick tour" page here.

Qbox is a brilliant service, a very unique concept that's been beautifully executed. I think they should have been on the recent Techcrunch 40. But the only concern I have is the license issue - will the music license holders be comfortable with a meta search engine that fiinds music so effectively that it also finds illegally hosted music as well? But then, the bulk of legal responsibility should lie in the person(s) who put up the file illegally in the first place, not the search service provider. Overall, I think Qbox is a clear winner.

Oladay is a new flash lifelog

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/21 02:48 | Web 2.0 Asia
Olaworks is a company that started with face recognition technology, which the company claimed was better than Riya's. Olaworks launched a photo album service with face recognition feature a few months ago, but the service didn't get so much of traction. Undeterred, the company has just launched a brand new service called Oladay.

Oladay is, in essence, a Flash-based lifelog service. User creates an "episode" by first selecting a theme out of a list of pre-defined themes, and then adding content using texts, photos, videos. Media files can be added directly or from a remote source.

After taking the service for a spin, what springs to my mind immediately are services like Scrapblog, Flip, and Vuvox. But Oladay tries to differ itself by making the service more social - other users can add comments directly on the pictures; Comment thread can be displayed in a way that resembles Twitter dialog. Obviously, Oladay wants to foster conversations around someone's lifeblog.

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TAG Oladay

Internet Traffic Swells on Web 2.0

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/20 11:12 | Web 2.0 Asia
The Korea Times reports that the internet traffic in Korea is surging, thanks to the "Web 2.0" services, spanning online video and blogs.

But I doubt if this is the case - I think the real culprit for the surge of internet traffic is P2P. There's even a report that P2P is responsible for as much as 90% of all internet traffic.
So the Techcrunch 40 is now over, with Mint going home with the $50,000 first prize.

Most notable to me as a Korean is the presence of two Korean companies - Storyblender and MusicShake.

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Musicshake - I didn't know this company very well, but they rocked the stage on Day 1. About 95% of people thought they were the clear winner at the end of the first day. I'll probably look into this company more.

Storyblender is run by Mr Yongjun Hyung, the original Cyworld founder. I've known him for quite a while and we spent some time together in Japan last May. I'll always envy him for the "original Cyworld founder" tag that will perhaps be attached to him throughout the rest of his life.

This is what I call M. Night Shamalan advantage - if your first film becomes a smash hit, the fact that your second, third, and fourth films actually failed doesn't really matter that much. People always remember you for the huge hit. Reputation certainly goes a long way, and that's why you should have your own Sixth Sense, i.e. the first truly huge success. For Mr Hyung, Cyworld was one. Hope all will go well for him and Storyblender.

Can you imagine Vodafone launching a Twitter clone?

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/17 20:02 | Web 2.0 Asia

Can you imagine Vodafone developing a Twitter clone, in-house? Probably not. But that's what SK Telecom, the number one wireless service provider in Korea (sort of Vodafone of Korea) seems to be doing, with its new Tossi service.

Tossi is essentially a microblogging service with a bit of social networking, which can be accessed from both web and mobile. So it's not so different from Twitter and Jaiku.

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In Korea, there's a well-known microblogging service called Me2Day. (I covered the service here). And it's commonly known that SK Telecom has been discussing business partnership with Me2Day. But for some reason SK Telecom decided to go its way and develop the service away. Someone at SKT must have said "Hey, a microblogging service? No sweat - we can build something like that in 2 weeks." That's just my speculation, but that's typicaly the way smart people at big companies think.

But the general opinion around the industry is SK Telecom should have just worked the partnership out with Me2Day instead of building its own service. That way, small companies can have an exit strategy and big companies can save time. That's why there are a lot of acquisitions happening in the Valley. Those guys in the Valley aren't exactly buying other smaller companies because they are generous, are they?

We know SK Telecom, like other big telcos, spent billions of dollars on securing the 3G bandwidth and they will do anything that will help them recuperate the investment. Well, if they want to recuperate billions of dollars, they should come up with a billion dollar plan - a plan that's a lot more fundamental and sophisticated than copying a several person company.

TAG me2day, microblogging, SK Telecom

Kia Buzz - the latest addition to a corporate PR blog

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/12 00:22 | Web 2.0 Asia
(Via Junycap) Kia Motors launched an official blog called "Kia Buzz", apparently in partnership with the famous PR firm Edelman.

Here's a quote from the blog:

Kia BUZZ is Kia’s official blog for sharing information on Kia vehicles, news, information and opinions.  Kia BUZZ is written by a wide range of Kia experts and management from across the organization to help bring Kia closer to its customers, industry opinion leaders and car enthusiasts.

For those who aren't familiar with the car brand, Kia is a sister company of Hyundai, Korea's largest and world's top 10 car company.

Kia tries to distinguish itself from its older sibling by putting on a more younger and sportier image. That could be a reason why Kia is launching this blog marketing initiative before Hyundai did. But frankly, most of the times, it's pretty darn difficult to separate Kias from Hyundais, because they share many parts.

The blog is actually surprisingly good. For starters, the CEO himself wrote a post. Assuming from the lack of ponytail, Mr Chung isn't exactly Jonathan Schwartz, and I'm thinking it was probably his secretary rather than Mr Chung himself who wrote this post. But the fact that there's a post from the Big Man himself adds a lot of credibility to this blog and sends out the message that Kia is pretty serious with its blog.  

It looks that various Kia insiders from around the world will pick up the slack and chime in with a post or two. And the real-life stories from Kia men could perhaps be the most powerful and resourceful marketing messages. For example, the post written by Michael Choo, International PR manager, made me actually want to buy the Pro_Ceed.

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The site however tries to preload video clips, which can make the site look frozen while the videos get loaded. But that's the problem from the video hosting company not Kia's.

Quote of the day

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/10 08:52 | Web 2.0 Asia
I met some people from eBay, whom I got acquainted to thorugh thisblog, the other day. And one of them said:
"In Silicon Valley, if you graduated from Stanford and didn't have anything to do with a startup, people think there's something wrong with you."
Well, if you graduated from Seoul University and did a startup, people think you were not good enough to get into Samsung. People all over the world say why they cannot have their own versions of Silicon Valley. The relative lack of (or the culture behind the relative lack of) entrepreneurial spirit among the young people seems to be one of the reasons.

UCCddl is location-based content syndication service

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/04 22:58 | Web 2.0 Asia
First of all, UCCddl (note: the site is in Korean) is pronounced somewhat like "UCC dull" but with a very strongly pronounced "d" - obviously some Korean services don't care so much about non-Korean users when they come up with a new service name. The word "ddul" means "garden". The service is a brainchild of the KT (Korea Telecom) lab.

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The service is a location-based content publishing and syndication service. User can first choose a geographic location by clicking on map and then upload photos, videos, and texts associated with that spot. User can also upload pics from GPS-equipped devices.

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Pick a location...

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...and upload media

Once the content is uploaded, it is displayed on a map and can be viewed by other visitors.

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In Korea, the word "UCC" (standing for user-created content) is, for some reason, synonymous with Youtube-like online video services. So it looks like the forte of the UCCddl service, as suggested by its domain name, is supposed to be the mashup of video clips with a specific geographic spot. So the idea is, people look up and consume video clips associated with a specific location, possibly on their mobile phones too.

But frankly this kind of idea has been contemplated by practically everyone in the industry for the last decade or so. I think the name of the game here won't be so much the breakthrough ideas as a seamless and robust execution. And UCCddl isn't particularly impressive both in ideas and in execution.
TAG Korea, KT, UCCddl

Facebook is popular in ASEAN too

Web 2.0 | 2007/09/04 22:38 | Web 2.0 Asia

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Here I'm quoting an email from my friend Yokeching Goon of Singapore (Sorry Yokeching to quote you without consent :-)

"...Have you tried the new Facebook apps? They are really something; every young person seems to be on it in SG [Singapore] and I think it might even overtake My Space and really the social networking space here in ASEAN at least is getting to be really crowded. Something to think about really..."

Obviously the US is not the only place where Facebook is white hot.

PS. I'm still recuperating from Michigan's loss to App State. It was a big shame.

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