Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Appables, the Invisible Wearables

One of my girlfriends came to me recently and said "You have to tell me what all the new hot apps are!" So here is what I told her:


Instagram + Twitter

Super is an amazing new app created by +Biz Stone, one of the co-founders of +Twitter. The thing I love about this app is its playfulness. It has a fun augmented reality profile pic creation aspect which allows you to virtually put on different types of glasses. When you want to make a post you start by choosing some of the most popular colloquial terms from OMG, current status, love, dude to hey-oh. The interesting part about this is that it also changes every day and does not allow for modification. You must choose among the choices presented to you. Today if you want to post you have to pick between "I love,," "We should," "The best," and "The worst." The other thing that makes this app so unique is its content library. What ever you write about it will automatically generate a catalog of picture suggestions or you can search within the app. For example, when I wrote about billiards, after typing my limited characters (not sure by how many) it presented me with a whole bunch of beautiful billiard pictures to select from. This app, like +Instagram, is very design friendly and photography-centric. Super allows users to create amazing content and surf either friends posts or locally, like +Yik Yak. With more and more noise out there, sometimes what is local is all that might matter at that moment in time.


Facebook + Craigslist + Local Newspaper/Town hall

+Nextdoor is literally one of my favorite go to networks. If I want to find out what is going on locally in my neighborhood, I check it out  From local events, to local police activity and crime, to local business recommendations, to neighborhood gossip; it is like the city town hall meeting all wrapped up into an app. If someone is looking for a plumber or if they want to sell or give away their couch, they post it here. Need a babysitter, tech help, or heard a loud noise, post it on Nextdoor. Nextdoor is designed like a community discussion board, where you can either post to your extremely localized neighborhood which basically is a mile or two in radius, or you can post to all the little neighborhoods in your city. Additionally, every neighborhood is a closed fence - you cannot see or access anything outside of your city. You can either like a post or comment, and it is a purely time based organic feed with the most recent always at the top, refreshing based on comments. There are no advertisements and you can completely control your privacy settings, deciding to either show it to your neighborhood, or the entire city. You can choose whether to show your full address, the street you live on, or nothing at all. With either postcard or cellphone confirmations for accounts, this network is as absent of fake accounts and abuse as any network will ever get. Everyone is always very polite and respectful, aside from the occassional heated conversation about conserving water or little neighborly spats. With the world getting smaller everyday, what a better place to start getting to know your neighbors than by using Nextdoor.


+Pinterest has become one of my recent favorite networks. The thing I like most about Pinterest is the ability to organize ideas and content, and know that it will always be there when you go back. In doing internet research I used to post things on Facebook and Twitter, so that I could not only share it but go back for future reference. However, what I discovered was that not only was that completely time consuming, but literally sometimes it wouldn't be there. This infuriated me for sometimes I couldn't remember the company name, product or press organization that had published it. Additionally, lately I've been using it a lot to formulate my ideas for future articles. Essentially, each one of my boards is an outline for an article, or could be. Pinterest is also one of best networks for selling products and merchandise. People that go there are at least 2x more likely to purchase a product than on Facebook or Twitter. And lastly, I love the beautiful content that they curate for me. Based on the boards I follow and the pins that I like, their algorithm picks tremendous personally curated content that has kept me at times on the network obsessively all day.  


I haven't used Yo much but based on +Robert Scoble's evangelizing, I had to try it out. Yo! is a trendy simple little app which allows you to merely send a Yo! to someone, with or without your location details. Rather than call someone, first send them a Yo! to see if they are available. If you are just thinking of someone and want to let them know, send them a Yo! 

Yik Yak

Now this is a network that though I'd heard of it, never downloaded it until a few days ago. +Yik Yak. While at first I was a bit put off because the top trending things sounded like a bunch of giggling gossiping girls in the high school bathroom mixed with a men's locker conversations, it has grown on me. If you feel like shouting at the top of your lungs or whispering something under your breath, Yik Yak it. The cool thing about this app is that it is solely based on geo-location. So while I can find out what the Yikkies are talking about in London, I can't vote up or down or comment on the conversation. It is merely a portal into a different world. Over dinner and a bottle of wine last night, my girlfriend and I had a little too much fun on this network. Thanks Andrew Watts for the inspiration!


I used to be turned off by +Snapchat and refused to get on it or use it simply because I thought people would be sending me naughty pics and/or asking and expecting them of me. If a guy asked if I was on it, I would quickly say no. However, now, though I don't use it that much (partially because not many of my friends do), I quite like it. It allows you to share pictures and video, without having to worry too much about whether you like the pic or video, or whether you will like it tomorrow. Essentially, it is a more sincere and real form of communication. Rather than sending someone a text or email, you simply snap them. One of the other features that I really like is the event stories that they have started to share. A few months ago I was able to watch the collage of all the most popular snaps from Germany's Oktoberfest. Like all the social networks, Snapchat is helping break down the barriers between countries and languages, helping us understand each other better. I additionally greatly appreciate Evan Spiegel's innovative approach. Recently they added Snappay, allowing people to quickly send money, and surely will continue to be mobile. 


+AnonyMess is an app that I actually haven't even used before (it's only available on iOS currently), but since I met with the two founders, +Marcus Perezi-Tormos and +David Mendlewicz I thought I'd include a reference. AnnonyMessenger is a new app created by two Belgium's which is kinda like Snapchat except you can only send messages to the people in your phone book and the person sending the message always stays anonymous. If you want to get someone's real opinion or doubt if they gave it to you the first time, +AnonyMess them, and see what gets pulled out of the hat. Within this app, just like +Snapchat you can send someone a pic and not have to worry about it's after life. You can delete it at any time and if you delete it, it gets deleted on both ends. It also incorporates an easy blurring functionality so that you can blur out faces or things of those your are trying to delude.  

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Happy New Year!

If you would like to follow my future blog entries check out http://sarahslocum.blogspot.com/ where I will be speaking about wearables, fashtech, innovation and the future!

If you would like help managing your social media presence, you can shoot me an email at sarah@sarahslocum.co.

Happy New Year and to 2015!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Adding the Life to Klout

One of the most common criticisms about Klout is that they do not incorporate one's real life influence into one's score; Klout is currently only a measure of one's social media influence. Due to this, some extremely influential people who are not very active on social media have a very low Klout score. While some of these people are so influential and known that they do not care, others find it insulting and are therefore dismissive of the new platform. While Klout is an awesome, innovative idea - creating social influence scores for individuals and not just press organizations and/or companies - they could easily generate both metrics.

Take Sergey Brin for example. Klout shows that he only has a 47 Klout while I currently have a score of 65. One of the additional reasons for this is that +Sergey Brin not only probably didn't create this Klout page (since Klout now automatically generates Klout pages for every Twitter profile), but because it is only linked to his Twitter profile (though I just noticed this link is broken and that he doesn't even have a verified Twitter account). For the most accurate Klout metrics and the highest score one must link up all their social media accounts.

Klout should have three separate scores - social, life and an aggregate of them both. To accomplish this Klout could extract one's education and work experience from LinkedIn, determine the Klout score of the company/university, multiplied by two variables - position and time. For example, continuing with Sergey Brin (though he doesn't have a LinkedIn profile either), we all know that he is one of the founders of Google, Google has a Klout score of 97. Therefore, 97 would be multiplied by one of the highest variables due to his founding position, multiplied by 16 years, To tally his educational life influence score, one would include his education at University of Maryland, which Klout indicates has an 89 Klout score times four years and some points for his bachelors degree in science, plus his brief graduate study at Stanford in computer science. Stanford has a Klout score of 96, times the few months there. All of this would then come up with some tally in between 97-89 for his life experience. This would at least be a start to problem solving the lack of life clout in Klout's metrics.

Put the Buzz in your Feed, Twitter

One of the things about being a social media maven is that it gives me insight into many useful ways to innovate, improve and progress that which is already out there. Two interesting ideas that I have recently had involve Twitter and Klout.

What has baffled me about Twitter is that basically every major press organization (and Twitter itself) as well as all other websites and blogs do not at least minimally automatically include the author's handle in the Twitter share function. The upside of including this information as well as related handles and hashtags is enormous, not only for the press organization, but for Twitter, companies, authors, and everyone involved. The only website I've recently come across which automatically does include the author's handle is BuzzFeed. This is giving them a serious competitive marketing advantage over all other media companies.

I recently started problem solving this issue because every time I read an article and go to share on Twitter I usually look up not only the author's Twitter handle but also any related handles pertaining to the article. While in a way I consider this part of my competitive advantage for I get to gather a greater understanding while researching this information, I do not always have time to do so and sometimes it is information that I have already researched and gathered in previous posts. Furthermore, doing so shows that I am not only thorough but a savvy Twitter user. However, this should be easier for everyone to accomplish. So I thought why not just crowdsource this information. One could also write code to automatically search Twitter's verified accounts for all proper names mentioned and automatically generate suggested handles and hashtags. This would be extremely beneficial to Twitter because it would generate more conversation, collaboration, information and rich data. Why this hasn't been done yet, I do not know, for it isn't because there aren't enough characters; almost every article leaves around 50 or so characters available.

Addendum added 10/9/14 6:08pm:
Twitter shares should also automatically revert to sharing the author's original tweet if they make one after publishing the article, so that they get the activity, recognition and retweets as well as the publication, and they should properly reference the related handles and hashtags. If not it should be crowdsourced and compiled by searching for verified and/or related Twitter accounts to the pronouns listed in the article.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Stay Glassy, San Francisco

Google Glass Explorers at the Stanford Hotel Meetup in March

This past Friday, April 11th another Google Glass Explorer, Kyle Russell, was unfortunately assaulted and robbed for wearing his Glass in the "wrong part of San Francisco," as he reported in a Business Insider article on April 13th. I can't help but wonder that if maybe the SFPD had taken action by now in response to the Google Glass incident on February 22nd, that maybe this wouldn't have happened, or at least not so soon thereafter. Especially not in the same geographical location, and at that, certainly not in the heart of the San Francisco Silicon Valley Bay Area again. At the same time, regardless of and across all industries, including those in tech, many find the cost of living in the Bay Area economically challenging, and Google Glass has come to represent a symbol of privilege.

While protests in San Francisco are an old and embraced tradition for addressing social and political grievances, it is quite troubling that the recent tech backlash has devolved into random assaults against techies. While there are many policies and social inequalities that could be better addressed by our government and all industries, I believe it is wrong to saddle the technology industry specifically with so much of the responsibility and weight. Advancements in technology have contributed so immensely to our human progress and standard of living that I believe we sometimes forget and take much of it for granted. And while it is easy to target an industry in which one hears about new billion dollar deals on a monthly basis, there are many other big industries and deals, and creating a scapegoat and targeting random tech users isn't going to solve any of the underlying socioeconomic issues or benefit the cause.

With Google opening up Glass acquisitions today to anyone who would like to buy them, Google Glass is slowly but surely taking steps towards mass market acquisition and the erosion of its privy tech club status. Now anyone who wants to spend $1,500 on one of the smallest and most high tech computers can do so. And contrary to things that I've read recently in the press, a Glass representative informed me today that they do not plan on lowering the price any time soon nor do they have any mass market release date set. And while $1,500 is expensive for a phone, it is not expensive for a computer or the next generation smartphone. Having Google Glass is more a representation of ones choices and values, as can be attributed to Mr. Russell and myself, rather than an elite symbol of extreme wealth. Soon Glass and wearables will just be a quality attributed to the American status quo, and just like smartphones, set forth another social and technological global transformation.

Google Glass and the wearable era will reveal an even more in depth dimension of reality, create a deeper and more intimate layer of global connectivity and interactivity, multiply our ability to create and access media and information, and further erode previous boundaries and conceptions of the centuries past. And most exciting, it will bring us all one step closer to every techie and sci-fi lover's dream of artificial intelligence, and augmented and virtual reality.

So if you ever saw some Glass Explorer and wanted to steal it and rip it off their face, because they had access and you did not. Or if you once didn't understand everyone's enthusiasm and love for their smartphones, and thought you didn't need or want one, until you got one, then think again and get excited because here they come! Welcome to Glassy times.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Never Forget Why You Bookmark a Site Again

As the internet grows, likewise the tools available to us grow as well. Annopad is a great new tool I've recently discovered which is the next generation of web bookmarking. Currently available on Chrome, it allows users to privately create, save and export URL specific notes with simplicity and ease. One can format with bold italics, add bullets and numbers, or even add other URL links.

Michael Santibanes, the creative young entrepreneur who came up with the idea in 2013, did so while doing "research and wanting to annotate notes on bookmarked links online." He told me that from this idea he "went to the drawing board, and after about four months, Annopad 1.0 was launched." Lifehacker, the tech weblog for "tips and downloads for getting things done," was quick to pick it up in 2013: "iOS 7 Draft Mail, Gunky Mice, and Web Page Notes."

When I first heard about Annopad, I researched what other tech savvy individuals were currently using for bookmarks and web notes. Since I've recently been sharing on one of my many social media sites for future reference, I didn't feel that I was well informed on the subject. I first asked Pete Pachal of Mashable and he responded with "Pocket, Delicious and Chrome." Jennifer Ruggiero of Get Nerdy With It responded quite similarly: "I use Evernote for notes, and Delicious  and Chrome for bookmarks." While Pocket, Delicious and Chrome are great placeholders, they don't have the added functionality of Annopad. When I asked Santibanes what differentiated Annopad from Evernote, he answered "I tested it last year and built Annopad to be an easier to use alternative."

Santibanes is no novice when it comes to entrepreneurship. His first venture was when he was 22 and "created a website and eBay account called Exotic Auto Haus to sell [his] racing photos online." Though it was a "disaster" he said, "Exotic Auto Haus taught me many skills I still use to this day." In 2013 he also co-founded a business/entrepreneur based forum called Novum Dives (Latin for “The New Rich”). When asked what drives him, his answer was simple: “I truly believe I was put on this earth to make a change. To me, knowing that someone somewhere used a product I created gives me an immense sense of pride and self-worth.”

Annopad is available in over 20 languages and will soon be coming to Firefox as well. Though he is currently on "take 3" of getting the extension approved, he is only more determined to make sure that as many people as possible have the chance to use his creation: "It is something which every web savvy individual should have."

Friday, March 21, 2014

Google Glass Assault and Robbery at Molotov's Bar, Haight St. February 22, 2014 (warning: profanity)

On Friday, February 21st I was bar hopping in San Francisco with some friends. We made our way from the Mission up to Haight Street and entered Molotov's Bar early morning, Saturday, February 22nd around 1:20am. Here is a picture someone took of me on Haight Street at 1am while I was showing them how to use +Google Glass before entering Molotov's.

Sarah Slocum, Haight Street, February 22nd, 2014, 1:00 am

At first, upon entering Molotov's everything was normal. As soon as I walked in some people as usual noticed I was wearing +Google Glass and were excited, curious and started asking questions. Here is a picture that I took of them about 15 minutes after walking into Molotov's when we were conversing and I was showing them how the camera functions.

Molotov's Bar, February 22nd, 2014 @ 1:37am

After briefly speaking with this group of people another woman came up to me and started asking questions about +Google Glass. I let her try them on and showed her how they worked. Here is the dorky picture that she snapped of me while she was wearing +Google Glass. As you can see all smiles and everything hunkey dory.

Sarah Slocum, Molotov's Bar @ 1:39am

I continued to speak with the woman and explain how they work. I put the glasses back on and took a picture of her two minutes later.

Molotov's Bar, February 22, 2014 @ 1:41am

Shortly there after, one of the two women who I had experienced some hostility and resentment from a bit earlier, escalated her behavior. I had first noticed them a few minutes earlier and experienced their hostility when I walked up to the bar where they were sitting on my left-hand side. One of the women with the short blond wavy hair closest to me turned around, looked at me, rolled her eyes and turned away. The blond woman then kind of shielded the right side of her face exposed to me and leaned into the brown haired Asian woman sitting next to her in a very juvenile manner to gossip clandestinely. I didn't understand why or where their animosity and hostility was coming from and merely thought that they were just immature, jealous, catty women. I paid no attention or mind to them and walked away. Later I thought maybe they thought I was recording them. I had had no interaction with this group of people aside from this, had exchanged no words with them, when the brown haired Asian woman abruptly turned around on the bar stool where she was sitting about 10 feet away from me and vehemently flipped me off and said F* Google... very loudly. I was shocked, taken back, and could not believe what was happening. At this point, feeling threatened and in disbelief, I told them that I was going to record them - hoping and thinking that they would be on better behavior and leave me alone, and if not, hoping to catch it on video. However, this only further provoked them and the brown haired Asian woman and her guy friend immediately jumped up and charged me as you can see in the video below.

First Video Taken at Molotovs 

Immediately after I started recording and informing them that I was doing so, the brown haired Asian woman's response was "Get out of here B*... waaa-boo-hoo, poor thing." Clearly, the response of "waa-boo-hoo" to "I'm recording you" is indicative to the fact that being recorded was not something that she was concerned about (at least at first) as she told +Anisse Gross in +The New Yorker article. To the contrary, this response is synonymous with, so what, who cares, big deal. Additionally, someone who doesn't want to be recorded, doesn't go around flipping off and verbally accosting someone with a camera.

At the same time that I was being heckled, verbally assaulted and told to leave the establishment by the former off-duty bartender as if she owned the place, I was having to move backwards to block her guy friend who was trying to assault me and rip the +Google Glasses off my face. Unfortunately, due to the fact that +Google Glass only records 10 second videos, unless extended, the video cuts out. However, 5 or 10 seconds later, after they retreated about 10 feet away again after informing them that I was only going to post the video online to a few thousand people, I started recording video again, and this time extended it.

2nd Video at Molotov's Bar (10ish secs after the first)

In this video you can see the guy, who later assaults me, standing with his back to me and the former off-duty bartender hiding in front of him. The thought of being recorded and having it posted to 1,000s of people online finally sunk in enough for them to retreat and hide, but not enough for them to stop harassing me. She puts her cellphone up and snaps a picture and then chucks a dirty bar rag at me. At this point, after being flipped off, called a B*, told to get out, being heckled and verbally accosted, having had the guy trying to assault me by ripping the glasses off my face and invading my personal space, the dirty bar rag was the last straw. At this point I am stuttering I am so upset and in such disbelief, and in further disbelief since everything was escalating so fast that no one I was with or anyone in the bar seemed to see or know what was going on. From the time that I was flipped off and she screamed "F*** Google.." to me to the time that the off duty bartender's guy friend rips them off my face and ran out of the bar was about 2 minutes.

After the man and the woman charged me and I started recording the second video, one of the nice guys that I had been speaking with earlier in the group of people at the table came up to me. He seemed to be the only person who had seen them charge me and saw things getting weird.  He says "I'm watching you, they know what you are wearing," at that same time the off duty bartender chucks the dirty wet bar rag at me. He didn't seem to see it though since he was looking at me when it happened. All the while a short little Asian man by the square column and his friend next to him start pointing and laughing at me, thinking that all of this harassment and treatment was really funny and fun and wanting a piece of it. The whole bully gang crowd mentality. The nice guy that was speaking with me continues on not seeming to notice that this wasn't a friendly interaction that was ensuing between me and this group of people.

He continues on and says "That is so F***ing rad" speaking about the +Google Glass. I, at that point, continue on, stuttering, trying to explain to him what is going on: "These F***ing B****es are hating on it [+Google Glass] right now.. I can't even believe it... They are throwing F***in' rags at me." He continues on and says "I just want to be in your place right now." I continue on, trying to explain to him what is going on and who is harassing me. I walk up about 5ft away from the off-duty bartender and point at her and say "This F***ing ugly A** B****." She walks directly up to me and says "You're killing the city" and tries to grab the +Google Glasses off my face. I respond and say "Don't touch me, don't touch me, I will F***ing sue you." The nice guy, who was the only one in the middle of this whole confrontation and witnessing it all, says "She is so mean to you." The former off duty bartender continues saying to the nice guy "I am from San Francisco, and this B**** is killing the city. Boring A** B****es like you (referring to me)." I then flip her off and the nice guy says "She is kinda Lame." I then flip the short Asian guy off who was laughing at me earlier with his friend as he starts walking closer to me and gives me some thug gangster look of intimidation. The nice guy then gives me a hug and I look up so that the +Google Glass doesn't fall off my face and the former off duty bartender retreats.

At this point the "punks" start getting more rowdy and my friend who I came with came over to my side catching wind of the escalating weird situation that had ensued in the last minute+. I continue on "These crazy ass people dude... I don't know what to F***ing do with it." I then say "This B**** is a wanker." She, the off duty bartender, then says "Boring ass techie B****es... Look at it." The short Asian guy then makes gang signs at me. Then I say "Wait, I want to get this white trash, this F***ing trash on tape for as long as I can." The assaulter guy then says "Get out of here" and comes over to me, rips the +Google Glass off my face and runs out of the bar. This whole interaction can be seen in the second video above.

I chased after him outside, leaving my jacket and purse on the bar stool in pursuit of the thief, assaulter, criminal. I run outside after him, grab onto him, he tries to throw me off, we get into a scuffle, I am pleading, yelling and trying to convince him that he is making a serious mistake and that he should give them back. He starts waving them around saying that he is going to smash them and making gestures of throwing them. The bouncer and others are in front of the bar at this point just watching the show. He finally relinquishes my +Google Glass. I tell the bouncer and anyone to get his ID: "I want his ID" I say, "Get his ID." No one does anything or gets it. I run back inside to get my purse and belongings. I find my jacket but my purse is gone. I look around, run back outside look around for someone with my purse, run back inside look around but it is nowhere to be seen. I am yelling at my friends at this point and anyone "Where is my purse?!?" I run back outside and coincidentally find the lenses of +Google Glass in their case on the ground. At that point I realize that whoever took my purse ran outside with it unzipped, they fell out, and that the purse thief had probably run off.

After I had been assaulted, and robbed of my purse, and now with +Google Glass back in my possession, I captured one last 10 second video outside of Molotov's. Feeling further threatened by the short Asian gangster who was approaching me and hoping to further protect myself and possibly capture video of the thief with my purse I started recording again.

3rd and Last Video @ Molotov's

In this video you can see the short Asian guy who was throwing gang signs at me inside, come up to me and start waving his hands around my face, possibly trying to further assault me. I say "Get the F*** away from me, W****." He makes some sound "Uuuuuu," waves his hands around in the air and walks away, after the woman whom I let try on the on the glasses inside comes in between us and says "Hey hey hey." You can hear the bouncer in the background say "I will be with you in one second, I just need to get everyone outside."

After all of this I called 911 from a friend's phone about 10 minutes later reporting the assault and robbery, called 2x more and waited for them for about 45 minutes. No one showed up. I called them back and let them know that I wasn't going to wait on Haight Street all night and that I was leaving. I went back to San Francisco the next day and filed a police report, case #140-157-387 Saturday afternoon.

The first local TV news station to report on the incident that I am aware of was Joe Vazquez of KPIX Channel 5 / +CBS on February 25th.

KPIX Channel 5 - Google Glass Attack

Here is a reenactment of the +Google Glass assault and robbery made by +TomoNews US which was published on February 26th.

The second local news station to report on the incident was +gabriel slate of KRON channel 4 / +CNN which says it aired February 25th, though I thought it first aired on February 26th. Gabe was the first person in the press that I spoke with and gave an interview to on February 24th.

Here is the +Inside Edition segment from the interview that I did with +Jim Moret on March 4th at the +Hyatt Regency San Francisco.  The segment first aired on March 6th.

Here is the national +CNN segment from the interview that I did with Dan Simon at the +Regus San Francisco on March 7th.

+CNN - High Tensions Over A High Tech Gadget

There have yet to be any arrests made in this case. I have turned over all media to the police - all pictures and videos - that I took at Molotov's that night. The Sgt. investigating the case has been away on leave for a week+ but is now back in the office. I am working with the +SFPD and will be pressing charges on the person who assaulted me and whomever was the thief that took my purse. The investigation is ongoing and hopefully soon there will be some justice and news to report.

Sarah Slocum
I Love Social Media, Inc.
PO Box 391
San Mateo, CA 94401