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December 2009

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IPromote, Comcast, Roam Simple, IPhone Caddie, Mobile Media, Vonage

December 23, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Aimee Mann's Christmas album, Another Drifter In The Snow, right now First Coffee's favorite Christmas album:

IPromote has announced what company officials are calling a "breakthrough" for small businesses, with the addition of mobile advertising to its local platform.   Company officials are billing it as a way of "providing businesses with the opportunity to unlock the ROI potential of display advertising on mobile devices." In short, iPromote is a way to get exposure in the mobile market at a local level with ads shown on thousands of popular apps and mobile-specific Web sites.

At a minimum of five dollars per day, small businesses will now receive instant mobile and Web-based ads and the ability to target locally all in one campaign. iPromote's local ad server, AdXpert, uses both distribution channels to deliver lead generation for the advertiser.
"Local businesses can now access mobile advertising to directly reach new customers in their local area," says Michael Barr, CEO of iPromote, adding that "mobile advertising is expected to experience phenomenal growth in the next few years."

IPromote is a division of 2KDirect, and operates offices in San Luis Obispo, California and New York City. 2KDirect also operates the iPromote Ad Network and AdXpert local ad serving technology. ...

Another worthy cause First Coffee's glad to help publicize: For the sixth consecutive year, Comcast is offering Troop Greetings On Demand at no additional cost to its digital cable customers through the end of January 2010.   The service delivers Christmas greetings from military personnel stationed overseas to their loved ones back home to watch whenever and as often as they wish. The video greetings are accessible under the "Get Local" section of Comcast's signature On Demand menu, and run anywhere from five to twenty-five seconds.
To compile Troop Greetings On Demand, Comcast secured hundreds of videotapes from Army/Air Force Hometown News Service and edited them into short video greetings for viewers.

Callidus, Vonage's Santa, IPhone and Abvio, Aspect and Seamless, ADC, VirtuOz

December 23, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Miles Davis's The Birth Of The Cool. Hey, one can only take so much Christmas music, don't want to burn out before Christmas Eve:

Callidus Software officials have pronounced themselves pleased with the company's participation as a platinum sponsor of Dreamforce '09, Salesforce.com's seventh annual user and developer conference.   The vendor showcased its new applications available on the Force.com platform, including Monaco Suite, Commissions Manager and Plan Communicator to the more than 15,000 participants at the annual event.

"We attended Dreamforce to showcase our native SMB products on the Force.com platform," noted Leslie Stretch, president and CEO at Callidus Software, adding that the vendor received interest in their Force.com products "such as our claims-based tool, Commissions Manager, and our document distribution and approval product, Plan Communicator."   Both products are billed as providing an "on-ramp" to sales performance management by "strengthening communication and streamlining sales processes."

Mark Smith, CEO and EVP at Ventana Research, described the Callidus Plan Communicator and Commissions Manager products as tools to help organizations off-board from using dedicated spreadsheets onto "a product that uses software designed for the process and for management" to pay commission and incentives. He said it would be attractive to "mid-sized organizations that have defined products and services with set commission rates and accelerators."

Callidus also announced that they will be expanding their entire suite on top of the Force.com platform to further embrace cloud computing, including building native applications on the Force.com platform to embrace the Salesforce CRM environment. ...

Back to the hard news: Vonage has announced that throughout the Christmas season, its customers will be able to once again dial 1-700-CALLSANTA from a Vonage home phone line and hear a recorded greeting from Santa Claus.   After hearing the message, they will be able to leave Santa a message telling him what they want for Christmas.

  Note to all of you asking for a white Christmas: Thanks. Thanks a lot. Next year be careful what you ask for, willya?

As an additional customer service, the recorded message will be sent to the account holder's e-mail address so they know exactly what their loved one asked Santa to bring them.

Santa via Cisco, Mobile Innovations, OpenLogic, Pandora Media, Salesforce.com Japan, Vitech CRM, IPhone Jobs App

December 18, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is a scientific comparison of Robert Earl Keen's three live albums. Right now Live In Austin, Texas, the more acoustic country-fried one, is holding a slight edge over Live At The Ryman a decidedly more rocking show. No. 2 Live Dinner is maybe not as good at either his country or rock sound as either of the above, it does feature more between-song patter, which, unfortunately, is not Mr. Keen's strong suit -- Arlo Guthrie or Todd Snider he is not.

But we must say we do love No. 2's inspired, blazing "The Road Goes On Forever" and "Think It Over One Time" versions.

Zoho Reports, Cincom and Syrex, Chevy Wi-Fi, Parature and Microsoft, Iridium, Chrysler, FlightView

December 16, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Miles Davis's mellow Some Day My Prince Will Come. No, we're not playing any Abba or Genesis. If the Rock And Roll Hall of Fame wants to turn itself into a joke by enshrining them that's their business. Finally letting The Stooges in cancels out Genesis, but there's no way to salvage Abba's induction:
Announcing a conclusion to its career in beta, Zoho has announced the production release of Zoho Reports, its online reporting and business intelligence application.  After its beta release, Zoho Reports has what company officials describe as "new features designed to further enhance users' ability to visually analyze their business information." Wanna know what they are?

DHT and InVision, PilotFish and SAP, CEVA, BlueAnt, HomeFinder.com, BVS, Catalyst and ScanSource

December 15, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is... folks, it's just a Rod Stewart "Big Bayou" kind of day -- crank up the Chuck Berry riffs, the pounding honky-tonk piano, the Muscle Shoals horns, the good-time Southern-fried songwriting and let 'er rip:

Dependable HomeTech, a Canada- based provider of technology support services for residential and business customers, has selected InVision Enterprise WFM for scheduling its call center agents.   By implementing the technology from InVision Software, a vendor of enterprise-wide workforce management tools, DHT officials said they're trying to improve the efficiency of their disparate service departments - "This will result in a better service at the appropriate times for customers and a reduction in labor costs."

DHT employs 500 people in total, with 150 of them working in the DHT headquarters-based call center. They get calls from residential and business customers, provide technical support and premium support over the phone or online.   The company's decision to purchase InVision's software was influenced by "several factors," DHT officials say, "besides economic reasons and InVision's competitive pricing."   Evidently DHT required one single platform for planning across disparate departments in order to achieve "flexibility in staff planning," company officials say, adding that they liked InVision's optimization engine and the module AutoScheduler: "Now, the planners at DHT can create requirement-driven and optimized schedules at the push of a button while meeting all scheduling constraints."

Founded in 1995 and based in Ratingen, Germany, InVision employs more than 210 WFM specialists and has offices across Europe, North America, and South Africa. ...

PilotFish Technology officials say they've enhanced their XCS eiConsole to support the SAP IDoc formats.   The XCS eiConsole is a graphical Integrated Development Environment for developing, deploying, managing, and maintaining interfaces "between any system and any other system regardless of platform, operating system, database, data format, or communications protocol," company officials claim.   The XCS eiConsole, with support for SAP IDoc integration, is being marketed as a way to get capabilities designed to slash the time required to parse, produce, and map IDoc data formats - it "address the subtleties of working with SAP IDoc."

In addition to supporting the SAP IDoc formats, the XCS eiConsole supports all major XML standards, EDI formats, and connectivity options, such as database, file directory, e-mail, FTP, HTTP, JMS, RMI, SOAP Web Service, what have you. This would make integrating SAP systems a whole lot easier.

You can get a free 90-day evaluation download of the XCS eiConsole with support from the PilotFish site linked above.

Jenzabar, V-Soft and Oracle, MTS Allstream, DecisionPoint, Impact Sports, Jabra GO, Callidus

December 11, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Sonny Rollins's Saxophone Colossus- a watershed jazz album that includes "Strode Rode," a personal favorite of TMC Group Managing Editor Michael Dinan. It's difficult, we think, to make pleasant, melodic tenor saxophone jazz that doesn't shade off into wallpaper. Something you could listen to at work yet still interesting enough to pay money and $9.50 for drinks to hear in a jazz club. Sonny's the master at doing it right:

Jenzabar, which focuses on selling software to the higher education market, has announced new integrated services with Docufide, a vendor of educational records delivery and management. 

Client institutions can now use Docufide's services to receive electronic transcripts, as well as capture student, alumni and staff-initiated transcript requests, Jenzabar officials say, adding that customers can also use the service to deliver transcripts or other documents electronically.
Docufide's services are billed as "simple to setup and use," designed to be "flexible," company officials say, "accommodating a variety of transcript processing workflows." The company offers Secure Transcript, a service which includes online student and alumni transcript requests, fee capture, administrator approval, and delivery. 

Now available with Jenzabar EX 3.5, an enterprise resource planning system, the product lets higher education institutions send transcripts electronically to recipients.

Fake Phone Cards, Turkcell, Core Capital and Onyx, Element14, AppTek and Menacast, 8x8, TrafficLand

December 10, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is The Clash's London Calling. One big reason The Clash are still listened to today and the vast majority of punk from that era is forgotten is that The Clash had what the vast majority of punks did not: You could sense joy and fun in their music along with the passionate politics:

The Federal Trade Commission has told the U.S. House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection of the Committee on Energy and Commerce that it's cracking down on the deceptive marketing of prepaid phone cards.   The Commission vote approving the testimony was 4-0. FTC officials say pending legislation would give the agency "stronger tools to combat the problem."
Lois Greisman, Associate Director of the FTC's Division of Marketing Practices, says that in 2009 the FTC obtained court orders settling two cases against major distributors of prepaid calling cards, imposing judgments of more than $3.5 million for deceiving consumers about the number of calling minutes that their cards provide.

December 9, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Lyle Lovett's Pontiac. Shame he never really was this good again:


Saying they're "driving down costs for all users of

Microsoft Dynamics CRM / xRM software," DynamicsExchange.com officials, in a quote, say have enhanced the community BlogCenter to "drive the social knowledge of the market's 135 top blogs with enhanced aggregation and delivery of collaborative momentum in the market."

The operative idea here is that enhanced design improves quality and personalization of knowledge to workers and enthusiasts within the Microsoft Dynamics CRM / XRM business platform. The community user interface is a personal aggregator of blogs letting users review all things Microsoft CRM more easily.

The BlogCenter uses the RSS-type feeds from all team-researched or community submitted blogs of the whole Dynamics CRM/XRM platform industry, as well as other technology.

Santa's Webinar, Ifbyphone, Zapproved, Acumatica, Cbeyond, FlightView, SoundBite

December 9, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Charlie Parker's debut album, cleverly titled Charlie Parker. First Coffee is no jazzhead, we do not wear black and smoke clove cigarettes, we cannot sit in cafes, drink espresso and debate the merits of Sonny Rollins vs. Dexter Gordon, we have never attended the St. John Coltrane African Orthodox Church, we are unable to name our favorite Sidney Bechet recording, we cannot explicate Dave Brubeck's time signatures, we simply knows what we likes, and we likes this Charlie Parker album:
Jumping right in with the hard news this morning: InstantPresenter correctly notes that taking 12 reindeer around the world "requires time and lots of energy." So Santa Claus is going virtual this Christmas season. Kindly old Kris Kringle is partnering with InstantPresenter, a vendor of online meeting and presentation services, to host a live Webinar from the North Pole, according to InstantPresenter officials.

At 11 a.m. Pacific time on Saturday, Dec. 19, Santa will broadcast his Christmas message using the InstantPresenter platform -- "recordable for those that can't catch the message live," company officials say.

Concentrix, Markinson, SatuitCRM, Dreamforce Roundup -- ZenKraft, Smobi, CRM Manager, GoodData

December 1, 2009

The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Aaron Copland's Appalachian Spring. Hey, sometimes you need the classics, and this is as good as they get:
Lots of news from the recently-concluded Salesforce.com Dreamforce Conference, which may have slipped past the turkey and cranberry and football games. So as you finish off those leftovers, we'll finish off these:   ZenKraft used Dreamforce to announce the availability of ZenKraft Shipmate - FedEx for Salesforce CRM on the AppExchange.   The product adds FedEx Shipping integration within Salesforce CRM and is built natively on the Force.com platform, meaning it runs on the same platform running Salesforce.com's apps. It also uses the familiar look and feel of Salesforce CRM.

It's billed as a way to let customers ship any mail or package to any Salesforce CRM Lead, Contact, Account or Opportunity through FedEx. It also calculates FedEx rate estimates, generates FedEx shipping and return labels, tracks FedEx shipments and more.

ZenKraft also placed as a finalist in the Force.com Forty Innovation Showcase.

Kendall Collins, chief marketing officer, Salesforce.com, said products such as what ZenKraft demonstrated during Force.com Forty will "help users simplify shipping all within Salesforce CRM.

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