Who Is Chad Hurley And Why Is He Smiling?

Three interesting bits of news:

1) From Reuters:

The International Herald Tribune has launched a new twist on the podcasting craze sweeping media companies with a service that instantly generates an audio version of any article in the newspaper.

Full article is here, and the IHT service is here. The service is brand new and having technical difficulties – I’m betting a scalability problem as a few million people want to try it – but it’s a really interesting idea. If it turns out to work well, I’ll blog more about it.

2) In a meeting yesterday someone said “First thing I do every day is check what kind of crazy stuff went up on YouTube overnight.” Online and on-demand video is just getting started. Yeah, Chad’s having a good time. Check out how fundamentally social the site is – one key to why it’s working.

3) They’ve been working publicly on this for a while, but it’s finally happening: Microsoft, Yahoo test IM partnership. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” immediately comes to mind. There will always be a tension between companies – whose automatic instinct is to be proprietary in order to defend brand and market share – and customers – who would really really like it if systems were compatible, integrated and connected. This isn’t true only of IM, of course – cellular companies are having their own version of this around their “calling circle” features. As a customer, I know what I would LIKE to have happen – but the problem is, it seems like companies only consider things like this for the sake of marketing or competitive advantage.

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2 thoughts on “Who Is Chad Hurley And Why Is He Smiling?

  1. theschwartz says:

    Another one on YouTube: YouTube serves up 100 mln videos a day
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20060716/tc_nm/media_youtube_dc_1

    IHT’s service is working now, and I listened to my first story that way. I will try listening to some over the next week or two, see if my brain adjusts to the bot-speak, but my first impression is that the pacing and emphasis and occasional glitches are significant enough to be distracting, and to interfere with comprehension of the speech. It sounds like they are assembling the stream based on recorded individual words – much better way than trying to generated a phonetic stream! – and it’s a good enough idea that I still want to give it a fair chance. But so far it seems like it’s not good yet enough to make it a runaway success. How quickly can they fix/improve on the glitches in it?

  2. theschwartz says:

    Sony just spent $65 million in an attempt to catch up with Chad and with Google:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/23/technology/23tube.html?ex=1156996800&en=81504576fa0a2af8&ei=5040&partner=MOREOVERNEWS

    Can’t be long before Microsoft does, too, eh?

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