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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Contest Offers $10,000 for Social Ideas

Sure we have Blackberries, MySpace, free citywide Wi-Fi, and the iPhone, but it still so hard to stay connected to our necessary information and people (written with tongue firmly in cheek).

But seriously, there remains ample opportunity for marketers, social networks and entertainment companies to enable consumers to stay connected. Cisco, the former boring router and networking company and now hip "social network" vendor will pay $10,000 for the best ideas for creating a "Connected Life."

So what would you like your mobile phone, social website or cable service provider to do? Since as a journalist I'm not eligible to participate, I'll throw out a few ideas.

First, we could use a better integration of CitySearch/Google Local with mobile phones. The screen size is a limiting factor, but there is plenty of room for improvement in presenting geographically targeted information available. If I want a guide to the restaurants or clubs in a one mile radius of my current location, than don't offer me outside information. Your online searches should also be e-mailable to a cell phone or friends so that you don't have to retype or (gasp) write down places of interest.

And how about integrating ratings from local search with social networks? It would extremely useful to be able to find out if your Facebook/MySpace network has eaten at a particular restaurant without having to spam everyone. Getting a list of the recommended places from trusted sources takes the best of local and social functions.

By John Gartner at 09:35 AM | Comments (0)

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