May 7, 2010

A small slice of Web 2.0 Expo

Central Desktop at Web 2.0 Expo from JD Lasica on Vimeo.

JD LasicaOne of the big tech conferences of the year, SF-based Web 2.0 Expo, is now in the books. I was able to attend only two of the four days, but here are some takeaways:

I had a chance to check out Central Desktop on the tradeshow floor. Above is my 3 1/2 minute interview with sales rep Mandy Gonzales. Central Desktop is an online collaboration platform that allows you to streamline your document and project workflow and collaborate with other team members.

Like Google Docs, it’s an entire web-based cloud solution, only more robust. At Web 2.0 Expo they unveiled their Microsoft Office plug-in, which enables real-time co-authoring capabilities. Central Desktop works with lots of different verticals, from large companies to universities and nonprofits. Their sweet spot seems to be small to medium-size businesses where 50 to 250 users might collaborate on a project.

Mandy also pointed out that a lot of consultants will use Central Desktop as an external portal to share documents with their clients and to take advantage of its transparent communication and project management features. Clients include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, CBS, Netflix, Amtrak, Day’s Inn, Harvard, Stanford University, the Humane Society and others.

Watch, embed or download the video on Vimeo
Watch or embed the video on YouTube

Other snippets from Web 2.0 Expo

All about .co: Want to get in on the next Internet land grab? “The .co era is arriving July 20,” according to Create Your Opportunity, which is running a $50,000 contest that ends June 14. I think what this means is that Colombia is making its nation suffix available to registrants — for a price — just as Tonga did with .to, Grenada with .gd and British Indian Ocean Territory with .io. (See the Wikipedia entry.)

If you have a domain name you’d like to pre-register, you can do it right now. But be warned: If anyone else pre-registers the same domain, it goes to a bidding war. The fact that you were first doesn’t matter. Which is why I’m not bothering to pre-register — I won’t pay the tens of thousands of dollars it will cost to win it.

Will .co cause confusion to users who associate .co with “country” — like — or “Colombia” instead of “company”? You bet!

SEO workshop: Great workshop on SEO, especially by Rand Fishkin (CEO and founder, SEOmoz) and Stephan Spencer (Covario). You can see both slide shows on the SEOmoz blog — I may do a separate writeup on this if I have time.

Giraffes!: At Ignite Bay Area, it was fun to see Ola Helland, the fellow behind, on stage. (The backstory is hilarious.) He’s collected 799,592 giraffes to date, so only about 200,000 to go by the end of 2010!

Visual storytelling: Jazzed to find out about Cara Jones’ exquisite Storytellers for Good project. Need to meet up with Cara in SF to find out more.

LaunchPad: Impressive LaunchPad showings by Engleasy (Great visual voice software to teach kids English), Rhomobile (a Cupertino startup that convert apps to work on multiple mobile platforms), Askyourtargetmarket and Stupeflix (more on them soon).

Philanthropedia: Great to meet two of the folks behind Philanthropedia in the nonprofit corridor. Founded by Stanford alumni, Philanthropedia leverages the power of hundreds of experts to provide social cause analysis and nonprofit reports.

Data: Another good workshop was Data visualization, with speakers Toby Segaran (Metaweb) and Jesper Andersen (Trulia).

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JD Lasica, founder of, is now co-founder of the cruise discovery engine Cruiseable. See his About page, contact JD or follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.

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