Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Scoop on the Sleuth

One of my favorite bloggers is Silicon Valley Sleuth. The Sleuth doesn’t try to be an “insiders” blog that talks about the names and faces of Silicon Valley, or one that tries to latch on to the latest tech fad. I like the Sleuth because it is a solid meat ’n’ potatoes tech blog without the pretension.

What’s on the Sleuth? What works, what doesn’t; what’s real, what’s vapor; who’s got something, and who is full of something.

Although the Sleuth is not a technologist by training (I think he studied Russian and Eastern European Studies or something really useful like that), he is one of the most tech savvy bloggers out there. Maybe sometimes he’s a bit too savvy and ends up writing about things that bore the heck out of me (try as I might, I can’t get excited about open source software). But even then, he puts a spin on it that makes the blog colorful.

But most of all what I like about the Sleuth is that he is trying to innovate. He is the first (and one of the only?) bloggers to actively incorporate video into his blog. And he does so using available tools such as YouTube, Yahoo Video and Google Video, which adds (dare I say) a more community, open source feel to his blog.

Also, the video is news video, not a vlog of punditry or self-congratulatory “insider’s insight.” It’s straight up technology news from the technology newsmakers. An idea so simple no one else seems to have thought of it.

And I’m not the only one who has noticed the Sleuth’s video innovation. Luminaries like none other than Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz also appear to be fans and are ripping off some ideas.

Video seems to be good for traffic as Sleuth says that his exclusive “One Laptop Per Child” has attracted an impressive 100,000 viewers so far.

One thing worth noting is that unlike guys like Om Malik or Tom Foremski, Sleuth is not independent and has the backing of the mighty VNU corporate machine, so maybe that gives him more resources to add things like video? Who knows…

Anyway, I know that journalists consider it faint praise indeed when a PR flack pays them a compliment (only when they rile us up and we are forced to use threats of violence and lawsuits that many feel like they’ve done their job). But in this instance the Sleuth will have to listen closely because I am saying something nice.

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