Today is Independence Day in the U.S., and since itâ€™s still too early for me to try and out-do Mondayâ€™s entry about web platforms, this entry is mainly site business and past entry updates(still worth reading for some brief, interesting news).
You may have noticed the redesign I did a couple of weeks ago, itâ€™s just an initial effort to make things look a bit better. Iâ€™m planning on doubling the width of the sidebar, thus making the entries area narrower, which I think will make the text look a little more readable, and give me room to add a few more useful sidebar sections. Iâ€™m not a designer by nature, so if you have suggestions or advice, please comment. After all, the design is for you, not me.
Iâ€™ve updated the Official Yahoo! Blogs and Official Google Blogs feeds. These feeds each combine all of the inidividual feeds of various Yahoo! and Google blogs, so that instead of subscribing to 20 or 35 feeds, you just have to subscribe to one. You can also then use Yahoo! Pipes to filter those feeds; for instance, only piping out entries with the word â€œAPIâ€ in them, so you can keep track of the companyâ€™s developer web services.
On July 12th Iâ€™m headed down to Statesboro, GA for a week to visit friends, and wonâ€™t be back until the 17th. While I hope to have time to write ahead and have content automatically post while Iâ€™m gone, Iâ€™d love to offer anyone interested the chance to write a guest post. Social Strategist reaches a little over 130 people through subscriptions so far, and has averaged 84 daily visitors over the past month. Iâ€™d like more people to know that Social Strategist is a place to find relevant, contextual content about online communications, innovation, web strategy, and user experience. If youâ€™d like to write a post about one of those topics or a related subject, drop me a line at jay #dot# neely #at# socialstrategist #dot# com.
Finally, each of the following follow-ups have had the entries they refer to updated as well, apologies if that causes them to appear as new entries in your RSS reader.
E-mail Innovation follow-up: AOL announces they have also now integrated their IM service with e-mail, following in the foot steps of Google and Yahoo!. The Internet yawns, and Microsoft hopes no one notices that they still havenâ€™t done the same.
RSS Mashups follow-up: I missed it when I first wrote about RSS Mashup editors, but thereâ€™s a company called Lat49 which is planning on serving ads on map mashups that are contextual, un-intrusive, and update the location-based results as a user moves the map. Generally, Iâ€™m not a fan of advertising pervading every new medium that gets created, but there is a time and a place for it. Since map mashups are often used to help people find local services, this is an instance where advertising would actually be useful. The service is in beta and wonâ€™t be released until August 2007, but GIS User has a great first-look at Lat49.