Will Roney

Posts Tagged ‘web 2.0’

Book Review – The Google Story

In Non-Fiction Writing on April 13, 2011 at 20:06

The Google Story

“Don’t be evil” is the mantra that guides the phenomena that is Google. The pre-eminent search engine and information repository is less than fifteen years old at the time of writing, and is so important that its name, which was once a Proper Noun has become a verb. To Google, is to use the portal in a million different ways searching for the world’s information, that the founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin have dedicated their lives to organising.

In 2005 David Vise wrote “The Google Story” which tells the story of how it all began. From humble beginnings in the Wild West years of Netscape, to the website that pervades most aspects of our internet lives Google is the story of the internet.

Realising that their lack of business experience could be a problem, Eric Schmidt was hired as Google’s CEO in 2001 after a search that is rumoured to have included Apple’s Steve Jobs. His guiding hand has freed Larry and Sergey to concentrate on maintaining the focus on the Google brand, and what it means to information organisation.

Of the world’s internet companies, Google is possible one of the companies with the greatest reach. It’s certainly one of the three most interesting big internet companies of the moment (the others being Apple and Facebook).

The key to Google’s economic success is the labyrinthine formula that allows pages to be ranked according to their popularity and therefore opening up the potential for selling advertising to the optimum webpages. This has been a real money-spinner for the triumvirate of Brin, Page and Schmidt who have diversified into extra-Google activities such as Maps, Blogger and latterly You Tube.

David Vise has captured a story that is only just beginning, but like all the best stories this is just the start. Google will be an internet force for many years to come, and ‘The Google Story‘ is an excellent place to understand where it all began.

This book review was also published on Information Unplugged– Sifting through the data of your life.

Have you enjoyed this review? If you have, click through and buy the book HERE!

Book Review – The 4-hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss

In Non-Fiction Writing, Uncategorized on March 27, 2011 at 14:45

The 4-Hour Work Week: Escape the 9-5, Live Anywhere and Join the New Rich

In the world of self-promotion, Tim Ferriss is a phenomenon and a legend. In the world of working lifestyle change, he is one of the beacons of the alternative working lifestyle movement. Most of us will have heard of his blog and book “The 4-hour Work Week” and thought that there was a catch. And maybe there is. But the catch is that you have to get out of the comfortable rut that we all find ourselves in, and try something new in the hope that it will chance your life.

The book is derived from the successful blog of the same name, and is grouped into four main areas:

Definition – Where you reset your lifestyle choices, and decide what you really want to do.

Elimination – Where the non-productive aspects of your life are removed so that you can focus on the important stuff.

Automation – Where the boring (but important stuff) is outsourced so that you concentrate on the interesting stuff.

Liberation – Where you finally make the leap into a new lifestyle.

The book is a series of mini-examples which guide you through the process of changing from living to work, to working to live. This is a book that can give you a new lease of life that ultimately benefits you and the people around you. The challenge is not what you need to do to maintain a 4-hour lifestyle, rather the courage you need to make that leap from a comfortable 8-hour/day routine. This is the book that might just change your life and make it happen.

Go on and do it, because you might find it actually works!

Have you enjoyed this review? If you have, click through and buy the book HERE!

Book Review – Macrowikinomics by Don Tapscott and Anthony Williams

In Non-Fiction Writing on March 27, 2011 at 14:44

Macrowikinomics: Rebooting Business and the World

In the beginning there was Wikinomics, and now we have Macrowikinomics, or Wikinomics 2.0. Don Tapscott and Anthony Williams have come back with a followup to their global hit, by writing Macrowikinomics. Taking a more practical viewpoint to the topics and themes proposed in their previous book, Tapscott and Williams reinforce the original premise that due to the globalisation that is sweeping the planet, collaboration on an immense scale is the way forwards.

With the same level of engaging detail, Macrowikinomics delves into a collaborative world where fundamental problems are solved and people are at the centre of it all. There are chapters devoted to application of this collaboration, focussing on education, governmental processes, highlighting individuals and companies who are putting this philosophy into practice.

There is the story of Zipcar who rent out vehicles for short periods of time. In the time that they have been operational, users have not bought their own cars because the maths makes it more cost effective. There are limitations to the concept, but the market is redefining the break-even positions with respect to (in this case) ordinary domesic vehicle usage.

Macrowikinomics is a book that re-energises your belief that there are things that can be done to stimulate the economy, and at the heart of it is a simple engine. You, the small business owner can harness the power of the crowd and the community to make life better and easier for those that need your goods or services.

If you liked Wikinomics, then Macrowikinomics will not disappoint you. Tapscott and Williams have created a book for the new world economy that draws on the experiences and skills of the wider community. This engagement in the marketplace will have far reaching effects in the communities that involve themselves – making them feel as though their efforts are rewarded, and that they can say ‘I made that’ or ‘I solved that’.

Have you enjoyed this review? If you have, click through and buy the book HERE!

Book Review – Search Engine Optimization for Dummies by Peter Kent

In Non-Fiction Writing on March 27, 2011 at 06:28

Search Engine Optimization For Dummies (For Dummies (Computers))

The successful “… for dummies” series of books is known the world over for the diversity of titles provided. Their recognisable covers provide reassurance and familiarity in a world of books that can seem a little daunting to the nervous.

Search Engine Optimisation for Dummies” by Peter Kent is no exception to the rule. Recently updated into a 4th edition for 2011, the book splits the task of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) up into 23 chapters of detailed information. This allows the reader to tweak their site so that the major internet search engines can find their sites, and hopefully push it up the page rankings.

From basic search techniques to how to submit your site to the search engines, this is a book that does not scrimp on the things that need to be done to make your SEO work effective. There is a lot of information contained within this book, and it can be difficult to keep track of the important notes, but Peter Kent has thought of this, by annotating the pages with symbols that identify important Tips, Warnings and things to Remember.

This is a book that similar to a text book, is designed to be used. The formatting will be familiar to anyone who has picked up a “…for Dummies” book before. This book does not disappoint.

Search Engine Optimisation is a bit of a black art, so anything that will assist a web designer in how to optimise their site for Google, Yahoo and Bing (other search engines are available) will help. This book does that in bucket-loads and will be a worthy edition to any bookshelf.

Have you enjoyed this review? If you have, click through and buy the book HERE!

Book Review – The eBay Business Handbook by Robert Pugh

In Non-Fiction Writing, Uncategorized on February 2, 2011 at 09:58

The eBay Business Handbook, 3rd edition: How anyone can build a business and make big money on eBay.co.uk

eBay is a phenomenon. The popular auction website where you could once get rid of your less-wanted property, has developed into its own mini-economy that allows many normal people to make a healthy living from it. The idea of connecting people and products via the web has been a template for many, but on eBay there are many who would like to get involved but don’t know how.

In his book “The eBay Business Handbook”, Robert Pugh has mapped out the stages that a newcomer has to go through to set up an account on eBay, how to manage payments using partners such as Paypal and WorldPay, and how to spot bargains that might mean the difference between making a marginal profit or a big fat juicy one.

The book is set out in a logical way to take the inexperienced through the process of setting up a personal trading account, how to write a decent listing, and what to do if you are defrauded as part of your eBay activities. There are sections concerning business matters – how to develop an online eBay presence and what to tell the taxman about all of the lovely profit that you’re making.

Overall this book is a very useful addition to those who are considering an eBay trading business. Its span allows many relevant topics to be understood, and this makes it accessible to those who have got no experience and ‘want to have a go’. If I was advising someone on the best steps to set up an eBay business, this book has to be at the top of the list to give that information. It’s an invaluable pack of information that could mean the difference between doing alright and doing great.

Have you enjoyed this review? If you have, click through and buy the book HERE!