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My blog posts

I presented at Bloomberg's 'The Year Ahead' conference in Washington DC this week: video and slides here. Link 

Industry news

The US president called for US ISPs to be regulated to enforce net neutrality (though he has no actual power over the regulator, the FCC, to enforce this). On the face of it it's a bad thing for ISPs to block or throttle particular services for commercial reasons - the whole point of the internet, and why it worked so well, was permissionless innovation. But regulating to prevent that behaviour risks all sorts of unintended consequences - the ISPs may rely on selling TV services to justify the cost of building fibre, for example, and on mobile all traffic is throttled, if only because the network has limited capacity, so it's just a question of how you throttle, not whether. Letting lawyers set rules for network engineers is tricky. Link

Twitter held an investor day and gave some pointers to future product development. Besides the huge tidying-up to be done, the interesting development is the fact that at least as many people use twitter without an account as with one. As someone pointed out, twitter is something that was more discovered than created, and building product is tough when you don't actually control the 140 characters themselves. Link 

Amazon and Hachette resolved their dispute, mostly, it would seem, without Amazon getting what it wanted, which from the length of the dispute would appear to be have been a major threat to the position of the publisher. Link

Facebook is closing down the reach of 'Liked' pages in the Newsfeed. Just in case anyone still thought that was a safe place to build an audience. Link

Microsoft is putting Skype into the web browser, though it still needs a plug-in rather than RTC for now. Apparently this was first discussed in the last decade, before Skype froze. Link

Xiaomi is looking at making acquisitions. Link

Yik Yak, Yet Another social messaging app, may be closing $75m of funding. Link

The Oculus mobile SDK is available. Link

Blog posts

Remember Google Glass? Link

Alibaba on Apple, USA and M&A. Link

Google on redesigning Android for version 5. Link

Hugo Barra - Xiaomi in India. Link

Jeff Atwood - apps are ruining the web. Link

Lecture by Ben Horowitz on management. Link

Microsoft continues to evolve towards productivity and, perhaps, away from platforms. Link

The problem with Android tablets - even Google doesn't try to make its apps work well on large tablets. Link

Digging into ART, the new runtime environment Google is using for Android. Link

Understanding Japanese web design. Link


WhatsApp (followed by Line and Wechat) has finally replaced BBM in Indonesia, it seems. Link

Lyft 'grew 5x' in 2014. Link

Facebook Messenger has 500m MAUs. Link
This is issue 88, sent on November 17, 2014.
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