The World is Flat
by Thomas L. Friedman. I got this first edition hardcover book for Christmas and it's not easy to put down in between readings. Friedman is a respected New York Times columnist whose astute commentaries are lauded by both the political left and right simply because he has a knack for making complex issues understandable and he often hits the nail straight on the head concerning controversial topics. Related to the theme of the book, I will use this example to speak about Amazon.com.
With the rollout of Blogdrive's new WYSIWYG (pronounced "wizzy-wig") entry editor, every Blogdriver can now leverage the search capabilities and huge database of books, music, and everything that Amazon.com offers with just a few clicks. The whole concept is a win-win-win situation in my opinion and I applaud Blogdrive for its implementation.
Now, who wins? First, Amazon wins by adding the Blogdrive community and its readership to its potential customer base. Second, Blogdrive.com wins from serving up advertisements that inevitably lead to click-through sales on both its free and subscriber blogs. As an affiliate, Blogdrive receives a small portion of those sales, which in turn helps the third person win.
That third person is the user of Blogdrive's free blog service -- people like you and me. Not only do we get the ease of one-click content enhancement in our blog entries, but also the added revenue going to Blogdrive will help sustain it for our continued future use.
Luckily for all of us, Blogdrive has had the drive, foresight, and loyalty to its users to find solutions in order to maintain its service and coolness.
Oftentimes, a creative and entrepreneurial web business like Blogdrive will collapse under the weight of its own coolness and success. Popularity is great, but it takes cash to maintain the great service, like paying for more servers and bandwidth. Many operations are killed just when they should be celebrating their own success because handling larger costs under the original business model requires innovative solutions to the change. Without real cash for these solutions, service degrades, coolness is lost, and the whole idea withers to a nagging footnote on the digital planet.
While I shall save a commentary about Friedman's book for Thunderstorms or Dark Skies, it's underlying theme of world flattening in this current (v 3.0) era of globalization relates to the individual connectivity that offers opportunities for people, like you and me, in addition to the seemingly disparate connectivity being used and leveraged by multinational corporations and governments.
Change at Blogdrive. Change at Amazon. Change at Yahoo. Change in your daily lives. It happens faster than you think. This isn't your daddy's internet, anymore.
Half of you reading this article with a java-enabled browser are now beta-testing Amazon's new product review pop-overs. It's a 50-50 coin flip with cookies. For webmasters with an Amazon associates account, it's a simple java script inserted before the </body> HTML tag and the one line <a href> tag inclusion on your content, like this: "Adobe Photoshop CS2."
If you see a dashed underlined link above, mouse over the link for the dynamic pop-over from Amazon. If you do not see a dashed underline link, you either have java script disabled on your browser, cookies disabled, or you lost the 50-50 beta test coin flip.
Also, my own testing has shown that the dynamic pop-over works equally as well when the <a href> HTML tag is wrapped around an <IMG> HTML tag. Moving your cursor over the book cover image, found at the top of this entry, also produces the the dynamic content from Amazon.
If you already have an Amazon associate's account, simply check your account and you'll be offered to beta-test this new feature on the left sidebar of your Associate's Central pages. It's simple to implement on your sites and also increases click-through rates, according to Amazon's initial, limited beta-testing.
Since this is now a wide beta-test for Amazon, maybe we can popularize the phrase, "Gamma-test," to describe the second beta-test. I like to make up new phrases as well as test new things. Check my Links Page for more examples and happy betty-tasting the dynamic Amazon pop-overs.