Has XML Failed Publishing?

October 28, 2012

XML will be celebrating its official 15th anniversary on February 10, 2013.

By many measures it has been a huge success. There are thousands of XML dialects used across a vast swath of the sciences, in business and in ecommerce.

By the measure of the book publishing community it’s been less than a huge success. (more…)

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Flash vs. HTML 5: The Early Years

October 14, 2010

The future of Adobe’s Flash format is murky. I first glanced at Flash technology’s murk when Steve Jobs launched an attack last April. Jobs stated that “Flash was created during the PC era – for PCs and mice…. But the mobile era is about low power devices, touch interfaces and open web standards – all areas where Flash falls short.”

Jobs pointed to HTML5, a W3C proposed standard, as the preferred alternative. The W3C released a new working draft of HTML5 on October 12. The development work is continuing at a near-feverish pace (by W3C standards of developing standards).

HTML5 is hot. In a May blog entry I covered Scribd’s dramatic commitment to HTML5 in lieu of Flash.

In September Computerworld offered:

The W3C is investigating the possibility of incorporating voice recognition and speech synthesis interfaces within Web pages. A new incubator group will file a report a year from now summarizing the feasibility of adding voice and speech features into HTML, the W3C’s standard for rendering Web pages. AT&T, Google, Microsoft and the Mozilla Foundation, among others, all have engineers participating in this effort.

html5-affect-seoSource: Varologic SEO Blog

But not all the news is positive. ZDNet reported this week that Facebook found that Flash still outperforms HTML5 for video on mobile devices (albeit modestly), “a zinger of sorts” in the Flash war.

And InfoWorld found a W3C official who stated that despite the hype, the HTML5 specification isn’t yet ready due to interoperability issues.

I guess I’m just the show-me tech guy. Here’s all I know about the technical limitations of Flash:

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Getting Ready for Adobe’s Big Update on Omniture

December 14, 2009

I’m getting excited because tomorrow Adobe is webcasting its 4th quarter and year-end results (it’s all public and you can register here), and, as expected, because the Omniture acquisition closed in the fourth quarter, we should get some initial insights into how the acquisition is progressing. There’s no question that these are VERY early days, so we can’t expect to hear a lot of in-depth detail (no fault to Adobe) but every nugget of info should be closely-examined, because at $1.8 billion, this was Adobe’s second largest acquisition after Macromedia. As readers of this blog well-know, I published a report in October on the purchase (check my home page for the link), so I am now a very keen observer of the outcome. I remain both naturally optimistic and tremendously curious.

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Oddly today Adobe issued a fairly tepid success story from Omniture. The numbers sounds great: 188% of this and 351% of that, but the Omniture customer profiled is a 200-person firm. Is this the message that Adobe wishes to convey? We should know more tomorrow.

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Your insights and observations will be much appreciated after the results and commentary are announced.

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Steve Jobs: CEO of the Decade

November 5, 2009

Fortune Magazine has christened Apple Computer’s CEO, Steve Jobs, as “CEO of the Decade.” You certainly will find no disagreement from this corner.

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The Official Steve Jobs Photo from Apple Computer’s web site

You’ll find some great coverage of the man, his career and his products at the link above (reinserted here for the mouse-weary).

People tend to focus these days (naturally enough) on his more recent triumphs, but please do not forget how it all began: the Apple II, then the Mac, WYSIWYG, and taking a big chance by adopting Adobe’s nascent PostScript technology in the first LaserWriter. That event alone changed my career and my life. I still claim to have authored and typeset the very first book published by a professional publisher (Doubleday) with my 1985 publication, “Personal Letters of a Public Man: The Family Letters of John G. Diefenbaker.”

It’s fun to find out who the runners-up were. Included in the #1 spot of course are Google’s co-founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, but they lose out because “their impact has been mostly limited to online advertising.”

 Warren Buffett is #2, with no word as to why he’s wasn’t the winner. Remarkably, Bernie Madoff is #3, with a comment that “Madoff’s too-good-to-be-true investing track record and audacious crime make him the fallen CEO of the decade.”

Gosh they even put Enron’s Ken Lay, Jeff Skilling, and Andy Fastow in the #5 position.

Come on! In my view Steve Jobs deserves every award there is, and placing him in the company of convicted criminals is ludicrous.

This man is clearly one of the most inventive, brilliant and capable executives in history. Three cheers!

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Adobe-Omniture, Part 3

October 1, 2009

What a great week this has been! I set for myself a tough task last Friday — produce a detailed, fair, informed and detailed report on Adobe’s proposed (and, I think, extremely likely to succeed) proposal to buy the web analytics firm Omniture — and publish my report by next Monday.

I’ve received cooperation from all involved, whether vendors, financial analysts, competitors, partners or customers — granting large amounts of time and insightful commentary on what this might mean to them specifically, to the web analytics industry and to Adobe and Omniture and their respective customers.

I’ve now also been the recipient of generous cooperation from some extremely busy high-level executives at both Adobe and Omniture who have done a great job helping me to better understand the value proposition from their perspective and on behalf of their customers (I think/hope I get it now). Many thanks to Janet at Adobe for facilitating this on short notice.

So  we’re on.

My plan is to deliver the report on schedule, but more than that to provide a  freeextra that very few (if any) analysts offer. Buy the report at the $95 (USD) price and register your purchase (the mechanism for doing so will soon be clear, I promise), and in two months you’ll receive a free update to the report that offers clarification on any and all of the quotes or stated facts that I’ve misinterpreted or not-quite-grokked (very important to keep the record clear), but also to provide you with all of the new developments that are certain to occur in those 60 days from the publication’s first appearance.

It’s great fun for me, as I hope the report will be for all of you.

Does information set us free? Let’s see.

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