Brian Combs

Online marketing pioneer Brian Combs talks the issues of the day.

Business


Unethical Behavior by Toys R Us

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So, Toys R Us has this neat functionality where a child can set up a wish list. My nephew set one up a few months ago, and it was very useful when deciding what to get him for Christmas.

I simply got on the Toys R Us website, put in his name and location, and up popped a list of everything he wanted. I picked out a couple of items and ordered them.

Very convenient.

Except that this morning (four …

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Written by Brian Combs

December 14th, 2011 at 2:46 pm

Posted in Companies

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SFC Farmers Market at Sunset Valley

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Austin loves a farmers market. There must be a dozen or more around the greater Austin area alone. These markets focus on locally grown, and often sustainable, food and other products.

The Wife and I have been to several of the Austin-area markets and this morning we decided to make the trek down to south Austin for the SFC Farmers Market at Sunset Valley. SFC also runs the markets downtown (on 4th) and in the Triangle, and is supposed to …

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Written by Brian Combs

August 28th, 2010 at 1:00 pm

Posted in Austin,Companies,Photoblog

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2010 Longhorn Football Players on Twitter

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As the social network Twitter continues its growth, more and more current Longhorn players are joining. Below is a list of the 2010 Texas Longhorns I could find on Twitter.

Let me know who I’m missing (or if any of these are fake).

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FaceTime Wishlist

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FaceTime is Apple’s video calling solution for the iPhone 4. My buddy Paul G. and I have been testing it over the last week or so. The high video quality has been fairly consistent, even when downloading and uploading files on the same network as the phone call.

The delta-based compression creates artifacts if the subject or background are moving, but that is to be expected.

Overall, we were both impressed, especially considering it is a first generation product. We did, however, have the following wishlist of items to be improved or added:

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Written by Brian Combs

July 15th, 2010 at 8:24 am

Posted in Apple Inc

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Initial Thoughts on the iPhone 4

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This week, I upgraded from the original iPhone to the iPhone 4. I ordered using the Apple Store app on June 16th (the second day of pre-ordering). It shipped from China on July 1st and was delivered into my hands July 6th. It set at the FedEx office in Austin for three days due to the holiday.

The packaging was the usual minimalistic Apple, with the phone, a set of headphones, a USB cable, a charger and a bit of …

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Written by Brian Combs

July 8th, 2010 at 5:10 am

Posted in Apple Inc

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American Idol and Google Searches

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One of the many interesting tools offered by the search giant is Google Trends. It allows one to compare the number of searches on various queries. I thought it might be a useful tool for predicting the winner of American Idol tonight. The theory is that web searches reflect interest, which should translate into votes.

Unfortunately, it only has data through May 24th (Monday) at this point, so it doesn’t tell us what the interest was last night, when …

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Written by Brian Combs

May 26th, 2010 at 2:13 pm

Intel Does Not Understand New Media

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I get most of my news from podcasts. They’re very convenient; I can load them up on the iPhone, and listen when I’m driving, walking the dog, riding the stationary bike, whatever.

One of my favorites is PBS’s NewsHour. They break up each of the news segments in an individual file. It really fits with how I want to consume news.

Over the last few months, Intel has started advertising on the NewsHour podcasts. A short commercial is run before …

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Written by Brian Combs

May 7th, 2010 at 5:48 pm

Thoughts on the HP Acquisition of Palm

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I’ve never been a fan of the megamerger. It seems to be a proxy for actually having a strategy. But this one does seem particularly bad.

I suppose they’ll rework the Pre so that it requires some sort of expensive cartridge that you have to replace every couple of weeks……

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Written by Brian Combs

April 29th, 2010 at 9:00 am

Posted in Companies

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One Week with the iPad

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Paul Groepler reports in on his first week with the iPad.

Okay I’ve had this iPad for seven calendar days, and took it with me on an international trip. I have figured out a few things, discovered a few more and have been stonewalled by a few. My end-of-the-week rating is a B – (B minus).

Here’s the good, the bad and the ugly:

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Written by Brian Combs

April 10th, 2010 at 1:46 pm

Posted in Apple Inc

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iPad Initial Thoughts

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock the last few days, you know that Apple released the iPad on Saturday. Paul Groepler, the unrepentant, bleeding-edge, early adopter, had to have one, of course. Here are his initial thoughts.

Saturday at 10am the UPS guy showed up at the front door with my iPad. I’ve taken a few wacky photos to show you what’s in the box…not much actually.

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Written by Brian Combs

April 5th, 2010 at 10:45 am

Posted in Apple Inc

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