Microhoo: Back on the Table

As reported on NPR and everywhere else, game on!

Compared to last time, I think the odds of a deal going through now are much better.

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Horsing Around w/Trojans

NYC was great and continued into a good week. Alas it didn't take long for me to bog my evenings productivity once I got back, though:

I'm loving my new ThinkPad but am still getting used to the sensitivity of the keyboard and the little red clitoris eraser head in the middle of it. Between that and working paced ambitiously, foolishly I clicked on something I shouldn't have a few nights ago. I ended up infected with Trojan.Purity, Trojan.Vundo and a host of other annoyances.

I took several passes both in and out of Safe Mode, and with several tool scans. After working through Spybot S&D, Symantec AntiVirus, Spycatcher and a couple lightweight removal tools made specifically for the main afflictions, I was getting worried. AntiVirus was only partially quarantining items, and only finding them in normal system mode. Spycatcher was only finding a few but not able to delete all. Spybot was seeing almost none of the problems to even take a stab at fixing them. To my particular surprise Symantec's Vundo Remover was failing to find all of the problems, and their list of suggested registry deletions was a mile long for that problem in particular. I'd already cleaned Purity out that way by the time I knew I was also deeply hit by Vundo, but wasn't keen to get deep into that for that latter of the known problems. This was getting pretty frustrating. I've been a Symantec user since the very early years of Norton Disk Doctor and I've had colleagues and personal friends in and out of there and Veritas over the years. Even after they stopped supporting certain products on certain platforms, I've held some loyalty. Also, the small freeware removers some developers had posted were getting stuck in loops, concentrating on a couple .exe and .dll files that were either holding steadfast or continually coming back from the dead. Moreover, Microsoft's common malware removal tool looked so general that it wasn't even worth bothering with upon close inspection. This was starting to take hours.

At the end of it though, I made a pretty cool new discovery: Thanks to Prevx for kicking ass and finally taking all the pain away. You're my heroes this week after finding and successfully removing what eventually had become not 2, not 4, not 10, but a whopping 19 malignancies. I plan to sign up after my trial expires, and look forward to a week-end of cleanliness returned to my cherished new toy (Be warned however, that now of course that if/when a day comes that I come down with something you can't fix, I'll be kicking and screaming to you about it.).

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Google Analytics + Salesforce

The Washington Post reports that Google Analytics and Salesforce are now talking partnership.

This makes sense. Both tools are lightweight and with a low cost barrier. Also, Salesforce was among the first to hype up the idea of software-as-service... in their case "eCRM" or, per their creative "No Software" image which cleverly makes software look about as politically correct as smoking. Benioff may ruffle some feathers and/or frighten people from time to time, but as a technologist his foresight there was right on target. BTW Marc if you ever read this, next time you have (now Governator) Arnie over for a holiday party, have him arm wrestle people!

...Sorry, I just had to indulge and pretend there's a CEO of something reading my blog. My "SEO the CEO" gospel is taking longer to catch on than what would be ideal, and I verified this morning that, as expected the folks at Wired were too smart to (re)print any of that post (it was partly in response to their their "Get Naked" story from a couple issues back). 🙄

Anyway, what will be interesting will be to see if this partnership - if it firms up - ends up an exclusive one or not. If not, then perhaps we'll still see them pair up with other analytics vendors like Omniture someday after all.

If I were Salesforce I'd be looking to potentially establish a partnership with every major side-side analytics player, if possible... including WebTrends for that matter (even though Microsoft is among their current users... and hey wow, their homepage is one solid line of code without a single carriage return; pretty intense). As the grandfather vendor of the space, WebTrends is hardly bed-ridden and still commands considerable respect and pull.

But then of course, I'm not Salesforce. I just work and sometimes live around the corner; they're more buttoned-down and also, like most, can hold their liquor more than yours truly (part of why I mostly stick to wine).

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Microhoo ("Micro-WHO?!?")

Microhoo (R)

Regarding to-day's Valleywag:

Google reported serious profits last quarter.

For a while now Microsoft has been called a big old giant getting left in the dust trying to reawaken (lots of $ in the bank left, just not enough to buy Google). Apps are moving off the desktop (they traditionally rule) onto the 'Net so they need to be able to evolve with that, if it's going to really be the future.

Yahoo posted unfortunate numbers from last quarter. There was a time when Yahoo could've bought Google, but Yahoo's CEO at the time particularly - a veteran not of Silicon Valley but of Hollywood - reportedly balked at Google's asking price. That move that may go down in infamy on par with the legend of the disinterest HP showed in Steve Wozniak's early prototypes for what (after he left HP to start Apple with Steve Jobs) eventually became the first Macintosh computer.

Google's eaten both of their lunches in search and has other strategic developments well underway:

  • Google Apps (like MS Office only from Google, and web-based instead of desktop-based)
  • Projects like Google Base raising eyebrows with everyone from commerce companies like eBay and Amazon, to media companies (e.g. Viacom) and others.
  • Petascale datacenters being built around the world to scale with the rapid growth of the Web and the world's information, which is a pretty serious concern (geek flashback: in the early decades of computing, machines big enough to fill much of our 3rd floor had less power than what currently lives in a modern cell phone).
  • Increased business development in China and other parts of Asia
  • A cozy-up with Apple around the pending iPhone (supports Google Maps as unveiled at Macworld)
  • And of course, recent acquisitions of YouTube and Doubleclick to expand their lifeblood advertising empire...
  • ...and who knows what other acquisitions of tiny startups or other companies they occasionally make without announcing it.

The idea of Microsoft and Yahoo in potential merger talks again hardly sounds illogical. Bring it, I say!

Predictions, anyone? Remember if you place any serious bets on it, there's always the option to do it in Second Life instead of meatspace... because it's also not so illogical that this could be bullshit (with one or more agendas behind it). 😉

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Based out of Northern California, bl.asphemo.us is a bl.og dedicated to the advocacy and study of high-impact, data driven marketing disciplines and related concerns: Analytics and Data Mining, Marketing Automation, Integrated Advertising (targeting, retargeting), Demand Generation and Lead Nurturing, Social Media / Social Engineering (Crowd-hacking) and the new PR, Privacy, Security, CRM, SEO / SEM, CRO, ROI... more TLAs (three letter acronyms) than any sane person's daily lexicon should include.

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