YouTube’s Big Bill

In the last 6 months video has really started to take off online. There’s a whole host of new video sharing sites springing up. But hosting video costs money. Lots of money.

This article: Your Tube, Whose Dime? – estimates that YouTube are spending $1m on hosting every month. That’s quite a lot for a startup. It also looks at how the hosting companies are making money out of it and some alternatives.

Help Me Create a Network

A new feature of is the ability to create your own networks. It’s a replacement for the slightly confusing inbox feature.

I’d love to create a little network of like-minded people so I can keep in touch with the hot stuff that other people are bookmarking. If you use and would like to ‘network up’ feel free to add me to your network. And it’d be great if you could leave your ID in the blog comments. That way both me, and other readers, can hook-up in a lovely world of

My name is iaintait leave yours in the comments.

Oh yeah, it might seem a bit unmanagable at first. But the smart thing to do is to subscribe to your network RSS feed and you can keep a track of what people are up to. (Oh, and don’t forget the newish private saving feature…a welcome addition for most normal people).

Bridging Real and Virtual Money

MAKE: Blog: The Future of Credit Cards – Earning virtual currency for spending in the real world & other world bridging. (Now there’s a snappy link!)

Interesting article on the rise of virtual currencies and the ways that the lines between virtual and real money may soon start to blur.

Flickr Mashups

I’m pretty sure I’m way behind the curve on these (as per usual). But here’s a couple of amazing uses of the Flickr API (if you don’t know what an API is, this might help. Or then again, it might leave you baffled).

tagnauticaTagnautica – A really lovely way of navigating related tags in ‘FlickrSpace’. It’s just one of those interfaces that is so simple and just really really nice to use. You just need one search to start to explore the world of photo tags. Love it.

flaprFlapr – A flash based interface for Flickr. Don’t get me wrong. I really like the normal Flickr interface, I think it’s great. But these guys have done a really nice flash alternative. It feels snappy and responsive, and just, well…different. Try it, you might like it.

FlickrFlingFlickrFling – An online application that converts an RSS feed into images pulled from Flickr. I can’t really see the use for it, but once I started playing with it I was strangely compelled. Read more about it.

Taken from Wired’s Top 10 Flickr Mashups – there’s a few other sweet ones in there, but these three were new to me.

Longtail Recommendations

long tail on last fmSupersmart Ged (who I know from Yahoo!) pointed me to the longtail recommendations engine on I’d been to the page but I’d never noticed the slider: have a play, it’s really good (you might need to be a user to access it). It’s a really good and simple way to demonstrate in real terms the notion of ‘long tail’ to someone who hasn’t ever seen it before.

And on the topic of all things with long tails, Chris Anderson‘s book about it is on pre-order at Amazon now.

User Generated Content

Well this is the reality of it.

This lovingly crafted piece of home-made UK hip-hop has spawned absolutely loads of mashups / remixes / re-edits. Just shows there’s nowt as queer as folk eh. Oh, and just to prove that entrepreneurialism is alive and well you can now get your own Kersal Massive hoodies, etc.

(Note to self – must get back into reading the B3ta newsletter so I’m not 3 weeks behind the rest of the world)

New MacBook Pro

I’m very lucky. I got a new computer. It’s a shiny new Intel-based MacBook Pro. I have to say I’ve not noticed that I’m getting more work done in a shorter period of time. But I’m sure I will eventually, perhaps.

My favourite feature is the built in camera and the silly little application Photo Booth. You can use the laptop like a, guess what, Photo Booth. And it’s got some hideous filters built into it that can make you look like a total freak (see below) or check out this Fickr Cluster. What fun.

Photo Booth Example

I’m sure I’ll feel the benefit of the state-of-the-art computing power at my disposal one day. But until then, bring on the easy-to-use novelty features…

There’s a serious point in here somewhere, honestly. I’m not quite sure what it is. But I think it’s something about creating easy, simple, straightforward applications on new pieces of technology: things that let people feel that they can do something new and different, that they couldn’t do with their old piece of kit.

It’s like when you get a new mobile phone. Some small part of you hopes that your world will somehow be better, different, more social. Something should improve. The adverts said so. The man in the shop said so. But typically there’s nothing noticably different – all it would take is one little application that you can fiddle with for 10 minutes and show to your mates down the pub. Then you’d feel that your investment was worth it (for a fleeting moment).