Check out our entry for the Knight News Challenge!

March 26, 2012 | Leave a comment

We’re a part of the Knight News Challenge:

1. What do you propose to do?

Speed up, simplify, economical sending and sharing of large video files from anywhere to aid journalists and others.

2. Is anyone doing something like this now and how is your project different?

Slow or expensive methods of video delivery exist, but latakoo is fast and inexpensive. We speedily send, share, download, and transcode large video files and provide public and private distribution.

Check out our full Knight News Challenge profile and – if you like our idea – click the “heart”.

Every visit and show of support helps. Thank you!

Community ownership and social networks as markets

March 24, 2012 | 2 comments

Johannes Ernst just put me to shame by writing this blog post while sitting next to me at Elgg Camp San Francisco:

[...] But there’s a stronger undertone from speaker after speaker talking about their projects. It’s about how the community wants and needs to own and control their social network (instead of just merely having a little section inside a worldwide social network). And how the community wouldn’t be as strong if they couldn’t. About the community needing to evolve the communication tools in parallel to how the community evolves. About how it is almost impossible to “work together” with others on a general-purpose site like Facebook, and how even high school students automatically switch to their school social network when attempting to get something done.

You can read the whole post here.

I spoke a little about ensuring the longevity of communities, which is something I’ve begun to think about in a general context: if you’ve established a community site and attracted a solid social network of people, how do you ensure that the community remains vibrant in six months, or three years, or a decade from now? How do you make sure, to put it bluntly, that maintaining a community remains worth your time?

In the same way that a community site augments the social experience for a network of people, I’m interested in explicit market features that augment the online social experience. For example, open source communities like the Elgg community itself: what if the Elgg ecosystem could crowdfund features and plugins?

This also speaks to community ownership. Why monetize a community using AdSense – content piped in from third parties outside the community, which may or may not be relevant but certainly are less passionate about the community’s topic – when you could empower the community to do this for itself? Why not allow online communities to be truly self-sustainable?

It’s been an interesting day, and I’m looking forward to talking to people afterwards. I’ve set up a collaborative latakoo How I Fly site here, for participants to collaboratively share video footage of the event.

Back from SXSW. What an incredible week!

March 17, 2012 | 1 comment

It’s been an amazing week, both for me and for latakoo. I’ve only just flopped back into my apartment in Berkeley, but here are some links:

On the official Box blog, Box and latakoo make video uploads faster than ever:

What does scale is anything that improves your productivity by saving time, especially when it comes to uploading videos. That’s why we’re excited to announce a new integration with video management provider latakoo. latakoo employs a one-click utility to shrink and convey large HD and SD video files in minutes instead of hours. Available today, latakoo subscribers can push their videos to Box faster than ever.

Then, CBS Radio News featured us in this week’s Reporters Notebook (MP3 link).

Steve Kline had an HD camera on our stand at SXSW, so we recorded lots of video of passers-by and uploaded it to our SXSW How I Fly video portal. How I Fly is a beta service that allows anyone to run their own collaborative video portal. (Like running your own YouTube or Vimeo.)

Speaking of which, here’s one of my SXSW contributions, sent using latakoo’s integration with YouTube (uploading to YouTube with latakoo is up to 37 times faster than uploading straight from YouTube’s own website):

The lesson I’m trying to drive home? latakoo makes video simple, no matter what you’re trying to do with it. And people are taking notice.

Twitter Bootstrap is rocking my world

March 9, 2012 | Leave a comment

We’re working on a new feature for latakoo, which will allow you to create your own niche video-sharing networks. Cool, right?

What’s even cooler is that the interface is based on Bootstrap 2, a UI framework for Twitter. We’re using it as a bedrock so that the page adapts to the form factor of the user’s device: if you’re on a desktop, you’ll get the full two-column experience, while a mobile device will see things in a compact single column with menu options hidden behind a dropdown.

It’s been very fast, and the framework is extremely robust. I know there have been complaints about it being overused, but to be honest, that’s because it’s excellent. (We’re not keeping the default colors or styles, mind you, which I know a lot of people are.)

Interested in the video portals? Stay tuned.

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