1. Flud is saying its goodbyes.

    Fluders, 

    This is going to be a very tough post for me to write. After three years of innovating in the news space the Flud team has decided to wind the company down. StartingAugust 8th, Flud will no longer be in service. You can reach me at bobby@flud.it with your questions or comments regarding this announcement.

    Flud managed to capture the hearts of millions of you all around the world and we thank you for giving us the opportunity to work for you, everyday, for the past three years. We also want to thank our investors and advisors for believing in our team and our vision, they were instrumental in giving the Flud team a shot. 

    The Flud team is extremely proud of the work we’ve done on the product, not least of which is ushering the news space into the social era. We still believe that this is a wide open market with a world of opportunities for the right product. 

    The company will move forward by selling its technology and intellectual property. 

    As for what the Flud team will be doing next, we’ve really enjoyed this time together and going forward we will continue to build new and exciting projects with each other. 

    I remember a great Wayne Gretzky quote at this time, “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take” and we believe that Flud was a bold shot worth taking. We’ll miss seeing your daily Fluds of news and we wish all of you the best. Regards from the Flud team. 

    Bobby Ghoshal
    CEO, Flud
    @ghoshal


    P.S. If you’d like to download all your Flud data (shared stories, reading list, and sources) please do so at www.flud.it before August 8, 2013

  2. Flud receives “Internet’s Highest Honor” at the Webby Awards

    Flud received not one, but two Official Honoree awards at the 17th Annual Webby Awards. Nominations include “Best Practices” for usability standards on our brand new web application and “Best Web Service & Application” again for our web application.

    Other official honorees include Google, Forbes, and BBC among others. Companies that set out to build great products don’t do them for the awards, but it’s always nice to get recognized by organizations like the Webby Awards that spend months wading through thousands of products to find the cream of the crop. 

    Congratulations to the Flud team and our partners over at BASIC for turning out a stunning product in such a short time. 

    Have you had a chance to use Flud’s web application yet? Give it a go!

    Happy Fluding :)

  3. Flud introduces “opinions” on it’s web app! (Exclusive to the web app)

    Today, we are slowly rolling out our most asked for feature, commenting. We are calling it “Opinions” because that’s exactly what we want all Fluders to share when they read an intriguing story. 

    Fluders, if you log into Flud’s web app NOW you will, for the first time, be able to comment on articles! Make sure you are on a laptop or desktop when you sign into the web app.

    This is exclusive for the web app for now. You will notice that it is designed for quick, lightweight commenting. We hope you love this young new feautre. Enjoy!

    Sign in here www.flud.it

  4. Behind the Scenes: Building Flud’s new web app

    In October of 2012 we kicked off a full revamp of Flud’s web application. Aside from commenting, Flud’s web app has been our most requested product by our users and we didn’t take this project lightly. 

    For the past few months we’ve been hard at work at tailoring, what we think, is the best possible social news discovery experience on the web. You’ve come to love all the functionality in Flud on your mobile device, so we’ve made sure to keep and enhance the mobile feature-set on the web. 

    We worked closely with our partners at BASIC. The team at BASIC is one of the hidden jewels in the design world. They’ve worked with us on our product launch videos in the past, as well as helping our company rebrand in 2012. Once again, they put their best foot forward and worked with us on making sure we could launch our beautiful new web app.

    This project was a very tightly integrated process with both Flud and BASIC’s teams working on-site at each other’s offices 100% of the time. We set a very tight timeline to get the project done in under 3 months so that we could launch in January to start getting early feedback from our users. We hit our date, and the project is officially rolling out to all our users today. 

    Starting today, you can use Flud to not only read and discover personal news on the web, we’ve made it really easy for anyone to add their team at work to join and discover industry-related news with each other in a private area on the web app. We have over 1000 companies using this feature already and these users absolutely love it!

    In a majority of cases we are seeing over 90% retention of business teams finding and sharing content on Flud as opposed to copying and pasting a link in an email and hitting “reply all.” Private RSS feeds for businesses is a brand new concept and we would love for you to give it a shot in your business.

    You can start by going to the web app and logging in with your Flud credentials

    We hope you love what we’ve built for you. Please give us feedback when you use the application, we want to present your ideas to our team here at Flud and take this application to the next level. 

    Thank you and happy Fluding!

    Bobby Ghoshal

    CEO, Flud

  5. Flud News rolls out a brand new web application!

    image

    For the past couple of months if you were a fly on Flud’s wall you would have seen us hard at work on a brand new web app for all of our users. We’ve designed, thrown away, redesigned, and reworked the entire Flud web experience. I’ve got to say, we’re pretty damn proud of what we’ve rolled out today. 

    We haven’t launched publicly with a big announcement yet, but if you are a Flud user and have been wanting to read news on the web then you’ve got to come test this web app with us. Your early feedback will help us make this much better. 

    Make sure you are on your desktop or laptop browser and go to: https://enterprise.flud.it

    Log in with your Flud credentials and voila! Leave the web app open in a tab while you get work done online and we will automagically curate new stories for you so that your news stream remains fresh. 

    You’ll notice that we have made sure to include all the functionality that you currently enjoy on your Flud mobile application, on the web as well. If you haven’t yet brought your team at work on board, try out the “Add My Company” option. Its a breeze to set up and your team will love privately sharing content with each other.

    Please send us your feedback on the web app to bobby(at)flud(dot)it or tweet us @fludapp. 

    Thank you and we hope you love what we’ve built for you!

    All my best,

    Bobby Ghoshal

    CEO, Flud

  6. Flud listed in EContent’s “Top 100 Companies” along with Google, Apple, Hulu and Netflix

    We’re really happy to be listed in EContent Magazine’s 2012 “Top 100 Companies” in the Digital Content Industry. Among others listed are, Google, Apple, Netflix, Hulu, Adobe, Aol, Pandora, Spotify and many other industry legends. 

    This is the third time we’ve been listed in an EContent Magazine list in the last 12 months. EContent’s panel picked Flud as a “Top 100” company in 2011 as well and listed us as a “Top 10 Hot Companies” in the Digital Content Industry for Flud’s innovations in mobile and social content distribution. 

    We’ve got a bag full of innovations for 2013 as well and we think you’re going to love what we’re working on. Thanks for your support Fluders :)

    Keep on Fluding!

    - Bobby

  7. Flud launches on iPhone 5

    Do you have a shiny new iPhone 5? If you do, you’re going to want Flud on your phone. We’ve just launched an iPhone 5 update and it looks great. 

    The larger screen shows you more stories at a time in your news feed, larger viewing areas while you read stories, images feel bigger, and everything opens up a lot more. 

    Flud is a great way to read news privately with your team at work. We have thousands of companies that have signed up and we are activating more companies every day. If you work at a creative agency or are part of a strategy group at your company, sign your team up to use Flud for free! We’d love your thoughts! If you want to learn more about Flud for teams and businesses, go to www.flud.it

    Keep on Fluding :) 

    - Bobby G.

    @ghoshal

  8. How to connect twitter to the new Flud for iOS

    Fluders, here’s how to connect your twitter account so you can tweet in the new Flud. Apple’s guidelines stipulate:

    1. Go to your device’s main settings (iPhone or iPad)
    2. Go to “Twitter” if you don’t have the twitter app, download it from the app store. 
    3. Log into your twitter account in your device’s settings.
    4. Your device will confirm your twitter account when you log in. 

    Then open up Flud and start sharing your favorite stories on twitter. Let us know if we can help you with this in any way.

    Thanks so much and keep on Fluding!

  9. Are you a thought-leader at work? Become one.

    In a rapidly changing world of communication, technology and media, how do you stay on top of the game? In a world of corporate competition and increasing difficulty to stand out in the work place, how do you increase your perceived value? From the individual, to the corporation, from the intern to the CEO, mobile communication and social media are changing what relationships and communication look like and how you can make your mark in your community.

    How do you communicate?

    A revolution in corporate communication began in the 80’s with the fax machine and again in the 90’s with e-mail. As the world moves social and mobile, what is the most effective way to share information and create relationships in social and professional environments? Communication is different than ever before; it is faster, more widely accessible, and more devices and mediums are available. People interact, share stories, news and interests sideways, not just top down in a corporation. So how do we translate this transformation and knowledge to communicate more effectively in the workspace? Simply put, e-mail just isn’t the most effective means of communication anymore. To be on the top of the game, you need real-time communication at your fingertips; the ability to share news and information quickly through push notifications and mobile app messaging. How effectively you communicate is a partial, but large factor in determining success in your work place. 

    How is your worth measured?

    Getting to know your corporation and industry better than the next person is invaluable. Smart phones put access to news and information at your fingertips at anytime. Knowledge is power, and with mobile news and sharing you have the power to be “in the know” of the tops stories regarding your industry. According to an article by E.B Boyd, performance is typically reviewed based on things like sales numbers or goals met, but tomorrow “it could be based on something that until now has remained ephemeral: organizational influence.”  Do you know how much you are worth in your company? How have you made yourself stand out to your employers and co-workers as a thought-leader and key team member?

    “The best way to keep your job in today’s economy is to be so valuable to your employers that they simply can’t do without you,” says the author of Corporate Bullsh*t: A Survival Guide.

    Flud for Enterprise

    Your Value and Corporate Influence. Becoming a Thought-Leader.

    Your influence in the corporation can be a game changer. As Flud transitions from a consumer newsreader app to a mobile corporate communication platform, our mission is to make the global workforce smarter. At some point in everyone’s working life, we become professionals and our goal is to make an impact where we are.  It is easy for someone to meet goals and create sales, but how valuable is that person to a company if they aren’t influencing others? If they aren’t revolutionizing their market, making waves in their industry or getting other team members informed and excited about the company.

    “Learn a skill that’s in demand. Value is about supply and demand. Personal branding expert Dan Schawbel said you want to be come the expert in a skill or topic that’s needed.” Cindy Krischer Goodman, Miami Herald

    Through mobile news and sharing, you have the opportunity to become an expert in your field. What you read and what you share will increase your credibility within your community and corporation because you influence what others read and learn. The benefits of sharing external industry news will be invaluable as your company seeks to stay on top of their competition and sharing internal news and information is easier and faster.

    “The one getting the promotion is the one generating that conversation,” says Lauren Zander, chairwoman of The Handel Group. “Know decision-makers at your company” and learn how to impress them.

     

  10. The enterprise is conquering its “collaboration layer”… the “consumption layer” is next

    There’s no question that the globalization of the social enterprise is inevitable and is upon us. Look no further than the hundreds of thousands of companies that now depend on Yammer, Jive, Salesforce, Huddle etc. These social-networkesque products rely heavily on the networks effects that made Twitter and Facebook into the giants they are today. These network effects are potent too… even more-so inside of a business with individuals who depend on each other and work with each other longer hours than they spend with their spouses at home. 

    Yet, there’s something missing, we use the Yammers and Jives of the world and they just feel like… work. It’s no surprise that they do, they were built to become the collaboration layer of the enterprise. This is evident in the fact that most of them are still desktop-first instead of mobile, their interfaces are riddled with features we’d never want to use, and with task-driven activities like updating calendars, clocking in product updates, messaging and document management. There’s no underplaying the importance of the collaboration layer, companies need it, they just haven’t found the right and exciting interface to make the whole layer more interesting to employees who now expect consumerized experiences in the workplace.

    But we’re all dependent on another layer too, the consumption layer. The layer that allows employees and co-workers to mine for and then effectively share competitive intelligence, market intelligence, industry news, internal company news, company memos, research etc., the list goes on. Put simply, professionals like to be informed, they like to be influential and they need a better way to do it inside of a business. If given an interface that lent itself to mobilized consumption with the same network effects of Instagram or Twitter, you’d better bet that your employees would be better informed professionals.

    We’re all dependent on each other to become better-informed and more influential and in this day-and-age it shouldn’t be a wish. It’s time the enterprise-tech industry responded with more products that tackled the consumption layer. 

  11. The iPhone 5, an Explosion on Jupiter, and a Libyan Attack

    An Apple a Day: Today, the twitter world was on FIRE tweeting about the iPhone 5 demo and we’ve collected the product highlights for you. Coming into the corner at 112 grams and 7.6mm thin, the iPhone 4 is 18% thinner and 20% lighter than its predecessor. Made entirely of glass and aluminum, the iPhone 5 has a 4-inch screen with a 16:9 aspect ratio.The A6 processor has 2x CPU power and 2x graphics, exceeds iPhone 4 battery life by 8 hours, updates its connector, and adds a third microphone. Get all the features here.

    Apple iPhone Office

    Explosion on Jupiter: Early on Monday, September 10th, amateur astronomers spotted a huge impact on the southern edge of Jupiter. They believe the impact was a result of an extremely large asteroid. The 1.5-2 second flash, that was visible even by backyard telescopes over 454 million miles away, signifies that the collision was one of importance. Amy Simon Miller, chief of the planetary systems laboratory at Goddard Spaceflight Center estimates that the item of impact “be in the order of 10 meters [33 feet] in size” based on the flash brightness.

    Explosion on Jupiter

    'This Does Not Represent Us': The U.S. ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens, and three American members of his staff, were killed Tuesday after an attack on the the country’s U.S. consulate. But, Just like not all Americans are like the people who made the weird anti-Islam movie that [sparked] protests in Muslim nations, not all people in Libya are like the ones who killed U.S. ambassador Chris Stevens.” Some Libyan citizens in Benghazi came out today to rally and show sympathy for American and for Stevens.

    Libyan rallier

    Libyan rallier

  12. Apple vs. Samsung, A Deeper Look

    Over the past four weeks, two of the largest technology companies on the planet have been battling out a case in a Californian courtroom that we are told could either reaffirm the patent system of America, or destroy innovation entirely - every aspect of the case is so very clear… The companies have exchanged arguments in the presence of a jury to come to a conclusion regarding the misuse of patented software, and trade dress dilution. The case had its highs and lows and ultimately ended in a win for Apple, with them being granted damages, to be paid by Samsung, of $1,049,343,540. Yes. Over one billion dollars.

    apple vs samsung


    But I’m not here to talk about the case itself: I’m here to talk about myself - I know, how self-centred - and how the case has affected me as a consumer. Over the past month, I have been ‘battling’ myself; trying to understand my own feelings and opinions about the conflict in the industry.

    On one side, we have a company protecting its inventions which it has spent billions to create, and lost almost as many billions due to competitors stealing its creations. The other presents the argument that it too has been stolen from, and the aforementioned inventor has done nothing new or inventive; they have only continued along the path set out by already-existing creatives.

    Both arguments have their merits, and their faults, but above this, one of them was easier for me to write. I find myself swaying towards supporting Samsung’s argument (the second of the two). Why is this? Because I believe they are right, and a result in their favour would be most beneficial to the legal and patent systems as a whole. That is the blunt truth. The real question here is: why is Samsung the protagonist in this story playing out in my head?

    What factors could there be in my judgement? I owe nearly everything I have achieved to this day to my interest in Android; it let me become a blogger, then writer, then designer. This is certainly a deal-breaker. I may even have a subconscious need to support Android, as if in return for what it allowed me to do.

    Everyone has connections like these to brands. And that’s all they are - companies using branding to make us give our money to them. Remember, there is no real ‘good guy’, only businesses operating for profit. We all have preferences when buying technology, and these are just that — preferences.

    These realisations lead me to yet another question: do I have a preference or a bias? Firstly, we should define ‘bias’: simply, it is an unjust or unfair preference. The difference between having a preference when purchasing and having a bias when making a judgement in court as a juror is that we are allowed to have preferences when buying - of course we are. But when we are considering only the facts, we mustn’t. We can’t say “I want this product to continue to exist; hence I support its creator,” to justify a decision in a legal dispute. That isn’t how the law works. This is why tech-bloggers such as myself are the least appropriate to be involved in the Apple vs. Samsung case. Let’s not kid ourselves: we love technology, we are passionate about it and we are knowledgeable about it, but we do not possess the innocent unknowingness of the layperson that allows them to make decisions based solely on facts.

    For this reason, I can only conclude that I - and others who argue they should have been involved in the jury’s decision - am wrong. We know too much to provide an answer (or over seven hundred as the case required) that is unaffected by our own opinions and, yes, biases. Only an expert or ‘normal’ person can provide a decision in a case like this. Enthusiasts are too involved in the industry to have a real, reasoned response. We are biased. But biases are not bad things. Biases are nothing more than preferences taken out of context. We all just need to learn to understand our own biases, and those of others.

    -Graham Macphee

    image source: Flickr

  13. GOP Convention Enters Third Day, Isaac Brings Flooding and a Controversial Book to be Released

    GOP Convention

    The Republican National Convention is in full throttle on its third day in Tampa. Mitt Romney accepted the nomination of President for the Republican party and tonight, Paul Ryan will accept his nomination as Vice President. Republicans are looking to win the favors of hispanic voters who are strongly in favor of Obama based on his immigration policies. Mrs. Romney gave a full speech, and the convention will also feature guest speakers like Condoleezza Rice and John McCain. Romney will speak again on Thursday night to bring the conference to a close, while Obama prepares for the Democratic National Convention next week in Charlotte. Based on a recent poll, 48 percent of voters trust Romney with the economy and only 44 percent trust Obama. However, a large 61 percent of the nation thought Obama was more likable. Needless to say, it has been a difficult race to predict. 

    Hurricane Isaac hit land yesterday and is maintaining wind speeds of 75 mph, keeping a Category 1 hurricane strength. The storm is moving at a slow speed, which will mean more rainfall for Louisiana cities. Flooding has been reported in New Orleans and other coastal cities, as a result of storm-surges up to 12 feet. National Guard troops have already been escorted into areas to help with rescues and officials are hoping people start adhering to warnings and get to safe shelters. Fortunately, the levee systems have held up fine despite some flooding and Isaac is expected to be reduced back to a tropical storm late today. 

    "No Easy Day", a book due to be released on September 4th, is a first-hand account by a Navy Seal recapping the raid that killed Osama bin Laden. It has already gained attention and some controversy because his accounts differ from the Obama administration’s original description of the event. A spokesperson for the Pentagon’s Special Operations Command said that he and other Defense Department officials received copies of the book last week and were surprised because the book was never reviewed by government agencies to ensure that nothing confidential was revealed. 

    In other news: 

    image source: CBS News

  14. Tropical Storm Isaac Grows to Hurricane Strength

    Martin Luther King Jr.

    On the eve of Hurricane Katrina’s 7th anniversary, Tropical Storm Isaac has officially grown to a category 1 hurricane and is approaching land towards Louisiana. Authorities have close the floodgates surrounding the east bank of New Orleans. All 127 perimeter floodgates have been closed as well. The hurricane is moving at 10 mph, towards the mouth of the Mississippi River and officials have assured everyone that the levees have been updated sufficiently enough to handle storms stronger than this one.

    Forty-nine years ago today, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his infamous “I Have A Dream” speech. Around 300,000 white and African-Americans were gathered at the Lincoln Memorial to hear this 35-year-old man spur the country on to share his dream. Today, his speech still inspires many to fight for what they believe in. How has MLK Jr. inspired you? Do you remember him giving his speech?

    Officials from Yosemite National Park notified 1,700 visitors that they may have been exposed to a rodent-borne disease that has already claimed the lives of two people who stayed at the park. Anyone who has stayed at the park from June to August are warned of this “hantavirus pulmonary syndrome”, which demonstrates symptoms including fever, dizziness and chills. There isn’t a specific treatment for this illness, and the park officials are assuring the public that this disease has no reflection on the cleanliness of the cabins. 

    In other news:

    image source: Seattle Times



  15. Remembering Neil Armstrong, an American Hero

    On Saturday, Neil Armstrong’s family announced that the famous and humble astronaut who made the first steps on the moon, died at the age of 82. Earlier this month Armstrong had a heart bypass surgery and complications resulted in his passing.

    On July 20, 1969, Armstrong captained the Apollo 11 mission to the moon and when he made the historical step onto the surface, his words went down in history.

    "One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind."

    Armstrong is known for being an extremely private and humble man. Despite his achievements, he chose to stay out of the spotlight, but continued to dedicate his life to flying after taking a desk job as NASA’s deputy associate administrator for aeronautics in the office of advanced research and technology.

    He was flying a plane before he had a license to drive a car and in 1955 graduated from Purdue University with an aeronautical engineering degree. After his career in NASA he declined offers to run for Senate, but served on a presidential commission that investigated the explosion that destroyed the space shuttle Challenger.

    In perfect tune with Armstrong’s life, his family asked that their privacy would be respected during this time and rather than a grand memorial for their husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend they requested, "The next time you walk outside on a clear night and see the moon smiling down at you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink."

    In other news:

    Explore where more of NASA’s pioneers are now. 

    Weather experts, the media and even politicians are keeping a close eye on Tropical Storm Isaac, which could grow to a Category 1 hurricane by the time it hits land. Its path would include New Orleans, which is remembering the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina just seven years ago. The Republican National Convention is also underway so everyone is involved is attempting to prepare for the storm and splitting coverage. 

    Image source: The Register