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David Strom

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Top Stories by David Strom

Web 2.0 Magazine on Ulitzer We all know about outsourcing, the ability to farm out work to people, often overseas, that will work for less, and sometimes for a lot less. But a not-so-new trend is changing the way that outsourcing happens, called crowdsourcing. The idea is to take a job and divide it into small enough pieces that someone can do it quickly in their spare time. Think about transcribing an audio recording. Or Photoshopping a series of photographs. The difference between regular outsourcing and crowdsourcing is that you don’t necessarily know your contractors, and they mostly are here in the good ole U S of A. Think of it as stimulus package for our troubled times, but based entirely on the private sector. The idea isn’t all that new, but is catching on due to some important trends. First off, there is a critical mass of people who are willing to do th... (more)

Is Email Dying?

Twitter on Ulitzer Have we reached the point where email’s influence over our electronic lives is waning? It is hard to imagine, especially for those of us who grew up in the minicomputer/PC era. For two generations, email was the killer application. It delivered information reliably and within a few minutes. But today the properties that made email so attractive for so long are now a liabiliity. “A few minutes” for a response is so last year, driven in no small part by texting and cell phone ubiquity. At the same time this was happening, wikis, blogs and social networks have begun... (more)

A New Medical Journal Search Tool from DeepDyve

A new search site is in beta called DeepDyve that has some promise. First, they claim that they index millions of medical papers from paid journals and free sites. The problem in the past is that this content wasn’t too readily available. Yes, there is Medline, but not a very user-friendly tool. Second, getting copies of the papers to read has never been easy, particularly for those of us in the lay community that don’t have medical center accounts or access to medical libraries. This is where DeepDyve comes in. They charge a buck to rent the paper for 24 hours. You can get other... (more)

Digging Deeper in Microfinance with Kiva.org

It Strategy I have been a long time donor to Kiva.org, a peer microfinance lending site that has been around for several years. When I first heard about it I thought it was an interesting idea and donated some money to fund a few different third-world start up businesses. Kiva works by hooking up generous folks with microfinance lenders by promoting the individual beneficiaries on their Web site. You get the feeling that your donation is going straight into the pockets of these worthy folks. And you can watch your donation be repaid in painfully small increments as the business o... (more)

A Mixed Experience Getting Free TV Online

Consumer Electronics on Ulitzer Since most of the TV shows are on what appears to be a three-month vacation, now might be a good time to seek Internet alternatives. I got the idea from a story last week in the New York Times about how one of its reporters has gone completely cold-turkey on their cable TV consumption. It got me thinking about two guys that I know in their 20s that have taken completely different approaches to their digital entertainment consumption. Their approaches illustrate what we have to do to get our TV these days. J. is single and a DirecTV subscriber, at $9... (more)