Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Monday's College Basketball Scores

tx Tuesday's Women's Basketball ScoresBy The Associated PressEASTBloomsburg 69, Shippensburg 61Edinboro 77, California (Pa.) 58Indiana (Pa.) 71, Gannon 68, OTMORE

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Android Dominates Day 1: Mobile World Congress

Mobile World Congress got off to a roaring start with Android smartphones dominating day one of the mobile industry's red carpet event in Barcelona.

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On Facebook, What You Give is What You Get

FB-Karma.jpgIt's your best friend from 5th grade's birthday, and you almost missed it because you were stalking your 7th grade best friend on Facebook. The time is now 9pm, in your time zone. In a moment of freedom, you return to and notice the tiny birthday notifications in the upper-righthand corner. Is it too late to wish your 5th grade best friend a happy Facebook birthday? You race over to his page and try to say something witty. "Happy birthday bro-dude!" you write, crouched over your keyboard. You were on Facebook this morning but were way too busy trying to just catch up on the newsfeed-filtered news of the day and forgot to pay attention to birthdays. And now, you just feel sad.


In our information-overload culture that lives as excited, exclamation-point riddled posts on Facebook and dies as wish-I-hadn't-said-that status updates that you later delete when, hopefully, no one is watching (but who knows who is watching, really), it is easy to miss the moments that actually matter, truly mean something.

So now to the point of my story: There's an app for that, and it attempts to address some of the "too-many-friends" syndrome that some Facebook users know quite well.

Launched yesterday, TapJoy's Karma for iPhone app connects with your Facebook account and attempts to identify and highlight your most meaningful connections and their important moments. These milestones/moments include birthdays, new jobs, important events (moving day, birthday, art shows on my Karma app screen), other celebrations (engagements) and "tough days" (a friend's dog died, a cat died, a fellow journalist died). The app implies that important events call for spontaneous gifts.

"We wanted to be able to connect to friends in those moments," CEO Ben Linden tells Co.Design. "So this is an in-the-moment gift service." To that point, he adds: "We grew tired of missing important moments like a baby or a graduation,"

For people who mix various communities on Facebook, this means that there's an impulsive moment available anytime, anywhere, to buy gifts for your Facebook friends. There is a nice variety of potential gifts to give, including Vosges chocolate, whisky stones, a Morse code necklace or handmade gourmet candies. If you don't like the gift, you can exchange it for something else in the Karma app store.

Gift-Giving As A Quick Fix

Today, the beloved Leap Day, happens to be my Facebook friend David Ford's birthday. David is a Kansas City-based artist who I had the pleasure of meeting a few years ago. I explored the inner workings of his mind through a studio visit. (I also reviewed one of his shows for the magazine Art Papers.) In his work, David discusses his love/hate kinda relationship with this country, evidenced through the passionate, at times fervent brush strokes that slide across his paintings. His work juxtaposes classic American symbols with faux luxury moments to paint a provocative, oft-times paradoxical view of the American cultural landscape.


Your Face Here, 2008 (courtesy of

Karma app suggests Whisky Stones (?) as one of the gifts I could send to David on his Leap Day birthday. To do this, all I have to do is click through and select the gift and David as the recipient. Karma sends a text, email or Facebook message to him so that he will get it and open the (virtual) gift immediately. Then I have to ask David where he wants the (real) gift shipped. Instantaneous delivery! Karma achieved, momentarily!

David-Ford-Karma-Birthday.jpgThe Karma app is a good idea, don't get me wrong. I am not dissing it. Apps like this make f-commerce a.k.a. the mallification of Facebook seem like real possibility moving forward.

But there is one caveat: The act of gift-giving through this means provides a temporary fix, not long-lasting satisfaction. The Karma app creators understand.

"We found ourselves relegated to a Facebook post or making a note to buy them a card at CVS and then we'd forget," Linden said in an interview. "We'd feel really terrible about that."

What this app also does is contribute to the strange cultural phenomenon of over-friending, which has essentially cluttered news feeds and caused bizarre overlap amongst Facebook users' normally neatly segmented lives. It's like the Seinfeld "Independent George/Worlds Collide" episode. It's yet another reason Facebook birthdays are so weird. Not even Facebook lists can help truly manage the menagerie of friends one has. At the end of the day, sometimes defriending is the best option.

So what of the Karma app for iPhone? Yes, I implore you to try it, see how it feels. Tell me a story about it in the comments section. Like Facebook, it's pretty good at identifying users you interact with often and are thus deemed important to you. Of course, it cannot read into the intricacies of human relationships. That's something you'll have to do offline.

Images courtesy of and Shutterstock.


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Court calls end to strikes at Frankfurt airport

FRANKFURT (Reuters) - A court called an end to walkouts by airfield staff at Frankfurt, bringing to an end three weeks of walkouts at Europe's third busiest airport in an increasingly bitter row over pay and conditions.

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Les News, 022812

Will the Girl Scout Cookie-candy bar save the world? [Buzzfeed] Is Rachel McAdams ready to get married? [ONTD!] Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart enjoyed Oscar weekend together. [PopSugar] Teen Mom 3 is on the way. [GossipCop] Streakers can be so fun. [Oh La La] German Chancellor Angela Merkel has 5 beers … poured down her [...]

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Reed Hastings: Netflix Will Look More and More Like a Cable Channel

Paul Bond
The CEO says he might even consider pitching the streaming service as part of a bundled package of more traditional TV offerings.

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Skype App Comes To Windows Phone

Microsoft’s VoIP app is optimized for Windows Phone 7.5 Mango smarpthones, including Nokia’s Lumia line and Samsung Focus devices.

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Twitter?s promoted tweets will soon appear on your iPhone but not your iPad

Twitter has just announced that "promoted tweets" will soon be appearing on your iPhone, if they haven't already.

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Kay Bailey Hutchison: Congress has ?no appetite? for more military base closures

Congress lacks the appetite for another round of military base closures, Texas Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison told Texas business leaders visiting Washington today.

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The Beckham Family Celebrates Cruz David?s 7th Birthday

Earlier this month we saw cute photos of David Beckham and his sons loaded down with big bags of toys filled with birthday presents for the littlest Beckham boy, Cruz David. Over the weekend, Cruz celebrated his 7th birthday with his family and it looked like they all had a great time together. Also this [...]

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Firefighters have earned their pensions

Firefighters' bodies take a prolonged beating during 20, 30 or 35 years of service and when they retire, they can experience medical problems caused by exposure to chemicals and the stress of always being ready to respond when the alarm sounds. Houston residents rely on the fire department's fast response times, aggressive firefighting tactics and highly trained EMTs and paramedics to handle the city's daily emergencies. Firefighters gave concessions, paying more into the fund, scaling back sick leave and numerous other benefits in exchange for lowering the city's unfunded future liability. Mayors Brown and White, along with Mayor Annise Parker as a council member and city controller, changed the Municipal Employee and Police Pension Funds, borrowed against and underfunded them and now the city wants to take over the Firefighters Fund to do the same. [...] when the house of cards fell, elected officials didn't blame themselves or the people responsible for causing the recession, they blamed the public employees and their pension funds or collective bargaining contracts for the budget shortfalls. Changing a firefighter's retirement from the current defined-benefit plan to a defined-contribution, 401(k)-style plan will leave several thousand current and future retirees wondering if enough new employees will join the department to pay for the retirement benefits that already have been earned.

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Monday, February 27, 2012

A New Website Design for Seniors Offering Vacuum Pumps for Erectile Dysfunction Treatment has been the leading supplier of vacuum pumps for men with erectile dysfunction for several years, now the parent company Legend Sales Inc. is proud to announce a complete site re-design with an expanded men's health section, larger pictures and easier navigation. Many older Americans are making the movement towards a more natural lifestyle that includes limiting medications whenever possible, and they are turning to online web stores to make purchases for personal health needs. has been the leading supplier of vacuum pumps for men with erectile dysfunction; and from the new website design, the company is confident the customer base will grow and will be more satisfied with their online experience.

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Officers: Man found dead in Howard was homicide

(AP) ? Brown County sheriff's officials are investigating the death of a man as a homicide. WLUK-TV ( reports the man was found dead in the basement of a house in Howard, a Green Bay suburb. Law enforcement did not find any weapons in the area.

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Create beautiful timeline covers with Cover Photo Maker for Facebook Pro+ for iPhone and iPad

It's not long before Facebook will require everyone to switch to the new timeline profiles and Cover Photo Maker for Facebook is here to help you design the perfect header for your timeline.

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Oscars 2012: Inside the Governors Ball

Matthew Belloni
Jean Dujardin, Meryl Streep, Octavia Spencer and other winners revel while their statuettes are engraved and producers lament the wins that weren't.

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