July 2007
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Month July 2007

Flog laps 10M


Just passed 10M member accounts on Fotolog.  What a year it has been, some community metrics / data points.   

  • We have almost doubled our membership so far this year
  • We hit Alexa #17 in the world yesterday (ahead of ebay!), average over the past week is #18, yesterday we were tracking reach of over 2%.
  • Comscore recently logged us as having 4.5M daily unique visitors on a base of 10M member, and 15M monthly uniques
  • Over 20% of our pageviews last month were from Europe.

And the adoption of new products has been very strong.   When we launched Fotolog Messenger three weeks ago we had 1.5M people try it out in the first 15 hrs.  As of Friday we had 3,193,618 members who had enabled the messenger feature, almost a third of everyone, who ever, over the past 5 years opened and used an account with us? ! That's, one engaged membership.  

Thank you to our members, thank you to our team in NY and thank you to everyone who helped make this happen — its a privilege to be part of this great social media network.   We are figuring out who is member #10M is and do something special.  We will also be launching more new features on Fotolog this week than ever before in our history — 10M or not, this was always going to be a big week!


Gone Fiching?

Billy, creator of Downfly created something pretty interesting called Fichey.  He designed it as a navigational tool to browse links people had sent to you via Downfly, but this week Billy, Seth and I decided to launch it as an independent application .    A Microfiche inspired browse tool, that lets you browse popular sites.  Billy pushed it out last night and TechCrunch picked it up today.    A fun week in the press.

Java time

Big changes at Fotolog last week — we shipped the new Fotolog memberpage.  It is written in Java, an update from the old PHP code that goes back to the founding of the site.   Results are coming in and it looks like significant performance gains across the board.  

First the member experience has improved — the new page is cleaner and has a faster response time.   But in addition, we are now serving the site on less than half the boxes that we were using.  

Registrations are up — over the weekend we are seeing our daily registrations up over 35% given the improved performance and a requirement to register to post a guest book message.  Revenue lift from Google is trending up approximately 15% given additional contextual data from the guestbooks. 

This new code base will allow us to innovate much more on the member experience — that is why we made this change — we did expect to realize some other benefits.  But these across the board immediate gains are far broader than I expected.  


Mac App’s

A few people have asked me what applications I am using on my Mac, in particular all the little sidecar applications I use. When I start using a new application I typically add it to the "app's I use" section of findin.gs. But here is a snapshot of some of the more interesting applications I am currently using.

Omnifocus : Omnifocus is a Getting Things Done (aka, GTD) application that grew out of the work of Ethan Schoonover and the set of scripts that he wrote called Kinkless GTD. I tried Kinkless, moved over to Actiontastic and now I am trialling Ominfocus and loving it. The degree of granularity it offers in terms of project/context control is great – as you flip from project to context, zoom in and out of focus, see Ethan screencast of the product. In Betaworks I have a diverse set of projects that I want to track and manage — Omnifocus is still underdevelopment but the omingroup have the beginnings of a great application here.

Neoffice : Open Office for the Mac, works great, unlike MSFT Office it runs native, and becasue it opens files all inside of one application its far faster than office. I dont generate many office docs, I use Neo essentially as a viewer — works very well. The best of lotus Symphony final comes to life as an open source project.

Spirited away: I like to work with a clean desktop — Spirited Away does just that,it cleans up applications that are not in focus after X minutes, very useful.

Backdrop : Nice little application that drops a curtain between the application in focus and others – for someone who likes working with a clean space, this is a great little app. Spirited away and backdrop work very nicely together.

Mindmanager: Just starting to work with version 7. Its good client based mindmapping software, I am still trying to figure out how to integrate this into my workflow (aka "why do I need this, how does it help")

Groupcal : To synch between exchange and ical, snerdware has a piece of software that runs pretty well. Warning, dont disrupt a synch — recovery is not fun.

Quicksilver : Amazingly versatile finder application

Glance : Remote desktop, demo's and presentations, glance is something the Flog team introduced me to and its way simpler than the alternatives (webex etc).

Disk Warrior : I was doing some preventive maintence to the other week and tried to install Tech Tools Pro. In the process my hard drive melted down — half way through the installation I was stuck and off to the Genius bar.   Disk Warrior fixed the problem, Tech Tools didnt.   For hard disk errors Disk Warrior.

Thats it for now