When Apple released its new iPad tablet computer, very few (very few normal people, at least; all of us geeks were keen to it) may have noticed the omission of a web technology that’s pretty commonplace these days: Adobe’s Flash. Flash is a web browser plugin that is installed nearly everywhere; if you’ve viewed a video on Youtube, then you’ve used Flash. Many of you probably have websites that use Flash for introductory animations or to showcase product videos and demonstrations. It’s the most popular technology on the web for presenting video and interactive content.
That may soon be changing. Apple thus far has steadfastly refused to implement Flash technology on the popular iPhone, and the same goes for the new iPad: no Flash – not now, and probably not ever. Apple touts performance problems with Adobe’s Flash plugin as the main reason for this stance, but there are likely larger strategic motivations behind it – Adobe’s platform is “closed”, which means that Adobe controls how it works and what people can do with it. Technically, Apple’s iPhone/iPad operating system is closed as well, so there is more than a whiff of irony here. But Apple does have a lot of support in pushing for a world wide web that is based entirely on open standards.
storeBlox now supports Paypal Express Checkout as a payment method for your store. If you have customers who seek to pay with PayPal – such as international customers or users who prefer to pay directly from a checking account – please contact us about enabling this option in your payment methods.
In case you haven’t noticed, everyone that was a search engine expert a few months ago and a “Web 2.0” expert a year or two ago is now a “social media” expert. The transition has occurred so rapidly that the biggest beneficiaries are the business card printers and web designers who have to crank out new brands and identities for the scores of self-styled social media consultants minted every day.
What constitutes a “social media” expert these days? In most cases, not a whole heck of a lot. Most social media gurus are simply folks who are a few steps ahead of the technology curve and got on Twitter and Facebook long before you did. They realize – as does CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS and pretty much the rest of the world at this point – that web-based social networks are ubiquitous and free. Whether or not social media offers any tangible benefit to your particular enterprise is often beside the point to these people – they want you promoting your business there, because, well, they’re promoting their business there, so it must be the right thing to do.
But, as I’ve discussed before, the benefits of social networking and media like Facebook and Twitter are minor for many businesses. That often doesn’t matter to social media experts, who tend to assume that you “must” participate in every possible venue in order to fully promote your business. What they won’t tell you is when that might actually be a waste of your time.