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Top Ten Meet & Tweet Gatherings

Starting in June, until the end of the year, there are hundreds of conferences held in the US that focus on social media, Web 2.0, Web 3.0 and beyond. With so many events and so little time, you might want to focus on the content that speaks to your needs. This Top Ten highlights the best of the best that provide most current and innovative content available today.

Top Ten Most Mentioned Brands On Twitter

How is Twitter faring as a business model? What brands are succeeding in grabbing our attention and why? We're in a recession. Money is tight. So which brands are diligent in positioning themselves up front and personal on Twitter to capture what dwindling disposable incomes we have left.

Apple's Snow Leopard Leaping Forward At Lighting Speed

The Snow Leopard Operating System's video was taken down from YoutTube by Apple preventing folks like us getting an advance peek under the hood. However, since this new operating system is being premiered at Apple's WWCD June 8-12 in San Francisco, we were able to retrieve some first-hand reports from the Confab and surface a video by APPLEBuzz. The insights I uncovered will show you what makes Apple's new OS purr like a domestic kitten and race like a wild cat.

Funware, A New Game Theory For Marketers

The generation of the new online game players has motivated consumer brands, websites and charities to use gaming devices to attract attention to their products and services. "Funware" is the application of game-like qualities to non-games. Researchers say that when we play online games, we enter a "flow state" that makes us receptive to the images and information we encounter. While traditional commercials interrupt that state, funware allows for these messages to seep through., the Dungeons & Dragons of Social Networks? describes itself as the "definitive social and economic ecosystem that empowers people around the world to communicate, engage in commerce and have fun in a culturally aware and profitable virtual environment." With a BETA launch date of June 16, 2009, nobody knows yet whether that description is an illusion, bravado, grand self-promotion or truly the next big shiny thing. To date there are no blogs written, no product announcements, and no press releases to alert the media. One would think with a June 9th launch date, should be 'sparking' a few conversations out there? Or is this part of their master marketing plan to create buzz about their emerging online kingdom?

Social Networking Brave New World of China

On June 4, 2009 during the 20th Anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, the government actually shut down access to Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and Flickr. Then Hotmail blipped off the radar, followed by Bing, Microsoft's latest search engine. Repression was rampant as a Great Firewall went up to prevent Chinese webizens from mourning online in their respective virtual worlds. Is Big Brother alive and well in China?

Gillette Goes Viral With The Hair Down There

Did the Age of Viral Advertising meet the Age of Aquarius? Does hair down there have a place in mainstream advertising?  Well Gillette seems to think so. Since mid-May when it started its ad campaign about shaving the short hairs with their Gillette Fusion razor, its YouTube video has racked up over 890,000 page views.

Unpack Your BING Before You Travel

Bing Travel aims to dramatically reduce the amount of time consumers spend searching for travel information by presenting comprehensive results in one place, and to help consumers make more informed decisions. According to a recent survey by Bing Travel, more than fifty percent of  potential travelers search three or more sites before booking their flight and hotel arrangements. By aggregating Expedia, Cheap Tickets, Cheapoair, Priceline and Booking Buddy on the Bing Travel site, travelers can not only search for flights and hotels but book without ever leaving the search engine.

Google Squared - Hollywood Squares For The Digerati

Google has gone anal, and for all those A-Type personalities that like things neat and tidy, have they got a search engine for you. In a recent move by the Big-G, there is now a way to take all that unstructured data you've been searching for, and collating and sorting it into an orderly spreadsheet of labeled boxes. Literally, that is what Google Squared does. It uses the principles of 'semantic' search, gathering information from multiple sources to present you with all the information required to answer your query.  First announced at Google's recent Searchology event, Google Squared is now live and operational in Beta.

Twine...Digg on Ritalin!

The digital doorway to Web 3.0 is beginning to ease open ever so slightly, as we learn more and more about semantic technology. Now joining the excitement of Wolfram Alpha and Google Wave is a small start-up called Twine. In the grand scheme of things, Twine might be a fledgling to the social networking space, but its definitely pushing the Web 2.0 envelope inside out with its debut. Similar to online aggregators like Kayak for travel sites or for job seekers, Twine acts as an aggregator of articles, blogs, documents and videos that you can accumulate from friends, associates or as a result of your own research. Twine then ties it neatly all together by topic, so you can have it in one place and can connect with other twiners with similar interests.

Siri, Advice from Virtual Personal Assistants

Remember the computer "HAL 9000" in the movie "2001 Space Odyssey," that acted like a personal navigator? Remember when you had personal assistants to help execute some of your everyday menial tasks? Well, a new shift in searching the Internet is going to make that technology, a reality. Virtual Personal Assistants are coming to a mobile device or computer near you this summer. Siri brings a very advanced collection of technologies (speech recognition, natural language processing, semantic data processing, and geo-location) to create a digital assistant that will help you perform tasks through a conversational, question-and-answer interface.

Top Ten "Have Netbook Will Travel" Options

This side of the millennium has spawned legions of "on the go" digerati who need their electronics to travel with them...and units that can offer the same computer features that we are use to having at home and in our offices. Netbooks are unique in their size, speed and functionality...and based on their light weight, they travel well. Whether you call them Netbooks, mini-laptops, or quasi-notebooks, these small, low-cost, low-power systems are the hottest thing to hit the electronics scene... since the first laptops!

NKOTB ‘Hangin' Tough’ (From Virginity To Menopause) Polls

If you’ve followed the Tink! blogs, you are loyal NKOTB fans, or “Blockheads” as you affectionately like to refer to yourselves. As a writer, what I’ve found amazing is the number of fans who have waited faithfully in hibernation until the NKOTB’s return in 2008. Some of you experienced NKOTB in your teen years and have not wavered in your support during their 14 year hiatus. Many of you are now adults, and others are mothers returning with their daughters (now the same age they were when they first were introduced to NKOTB). In advance of NKOTB's Summer Tour, here are 6 quick polls that will determine some of the demographics and preferences of the NKOTB fan base. Take the “Hangin' Tough’ (From Virginity To Menopause) Polls.

Ghostbusters,The Video Game Coming to Your Neighborhood...

Remember the novel "1984" and the doom and gloom it portrayed as human existence came under the control of an entity called Big Brother. And then when the year actually came to past, we were somewhat disappointed that our lives were not turned upside down by some super human domination. But then, as fate would have it, in its place, a movie premiered that actually got us laughing about the supernatural...a movie that got our toes a tappin' and everyone singing those crazy lyrics by Ray Parker Jr: "If there's something strange in your neighborhood...if there's something weird and it don't look good...Who ya gonna call?...Ghostbusters!" Well Children of the 80s and older, Ghostbusters is now aiming their proton packs at a fresh new generation when "Ghostbusters: The Video Game" is released June 16, 2009.

Stars Are Getting Their Ning On!

Whether you're into football or chess, bird watching or punk rock, sex or abstinence, Ning has an online community for you. This free social network platform brings together people globally who share common focus and passion. To date, its one of the fastest growing online venues. Launched two years ago, Ning lets members custom build their own social-networks based around the areas of business and pleasure that are of the most interest to them. Whether you are a neighborhood group of 5 housewives or a Boy Band attracting fans in the tens of thousands, we are all stars in our right.  So if you're looking for community to spotlight your star power,  Ning can socially connect you with like-minded individuals in an online neighborhood, built in less than 15 minutes!