Facebook's Teleportation Station: 10 Things We Wanted Instead - InformationWeek

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3/27/2015
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Facebook's Teleportation Station: 10 Things We Wanted Instead

Facebook accidentally leaked something called Teleportation Station and the rumor mill went wild. However, the rumors weren't that good, so we came up with something better.
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(Image: Facebook)

(Image: Facebook)

This is what happens when you accidentally leak something with a really cool name that wasn't intended to be a very big deal. When Facebook accidentally sent out a message early this week hinting at something called Teleportation Station, everyone created a big deal speculating over what the social media was trying to create.

A lot of other people thought that it just looks silly.

Facebook announced some interesting and useful things at F8 conference on March 25 and 26, but none of them was Teleportation Station, which was just an experiment with spherical video at their HQ. Mark Zuckerberg mentioned it once during his keynote and the folks in the station waved and that was all.

But the funny thing is that even the speculation didn't live up to the name.

People were thinking maybe Teleportation Station was the name of the developer platform for Facebook's Oculus Rift partnership. Others wondered if it was just an app test bed. In truth, while it did have to do with the Oculus Rift, it was really just a minor thing that gone blown out of proportion.

However, when you think about it, shouldn't something with that great name deserve to be something much cooler than even a developer platform?

Facebook has rising revenues, an expanding user base (despite the general impression that people are leaving for other social networks), improving mobile usage, and investments in Oculus Rift and machine learning. Surely, it could use all that strength to provide us something worthy of the name Teleportation Station.

Obviously whatever it is, given the name it should be about transporting something -- real or virtual -- or at least about a station where people can do something. Teleportation Station needs to be bigger than a developer platform and it needs to live up to the name. Here's what I think Facebook and Zuckerberg should have unveiled. Do you have a better idea? If so, let us know in the comments section.

David has been writing on business and technology for over 10 years and was most recently Managing Editor at Enterpriseefficiency.com. Before that he was an Assistant Editor at MIT Sloan Management Review, where he covered a wide range of business topics including IT, ... View Full Bio

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David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
4/6/2015 | 6:11:41 PM
Re: Facebook's Teleportation Station: 10 Things We Wanted Instead
@Zerox203- I love the Segway. I think it suffers from a price issue more than anything. If they ever get down in the price range of a good bike, I think it will still take over. But your point is taken. Sometimes the speculation is more fun than the reality.
zerox203
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zerox203,
User Rank: Ninja
3/31/2015 | 10:24:52 PM
Re: Facebook's Teleportation Station: 10 Things We Wanted Instead
This reminds me of when a certain product was teased over a decade ago. There were some early press leaks, and the creator(s) stated only that it had the potential to revolutionize society, it was transportation-based, and it was codenamed ' Ginger'. People ate it up. Speculation ran wild. People thought it might be a jetpack because the move Chicken Run was in theaters at the time and the main character, Ginger, used a jetpack. Steve Jobs was quoted as saying that it was "as big a deal as the PC". Then it was actually unvield, and we got... well, the Segway. In fairness, the Segway (and related products) has turned out to be a relatively enduring piece of engineering that has it's place in a number of industries, but certainly nothing like anyone was expecting. Plus, it looks so goofy. Facebook should have borne this story in mind - but maybe they did. No publicity is bad publicity, right?

All these fun ideas do remind me of how odd it is that we live in an age where one company (that originally made what is basically a messaging service) could realistically create all of these. Well, not the ones that are impossible, but one company can touch all these industries. Amazon makes smartphones that you can order digital goods, phsyical goods, and in-home services From Amazon on. I found myself laughing at Dave's imagination running wild, then caught myself thinking about how cool I actually thought the coffee shop idea was (I'm actually not a coffee drinker, but the idea of cross-country connected stores). One small thing, Dave - when you mentioned 3D printing, it looks like you meant to link to an article about 3D printing body parts, but you actually linked to one about 3D printing food. Not that I'm complaining. Yum. Or, maybe you're just a cannibal...
impactnow
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impactnow,
User Rank: Author
3/31/2015 | 1:27:18 PM
Time travel
Okay I wish the teleportation station could take me back in virtual time to meet really cool leaders and inspirations to my thought process . Now that would be truly cool and revolutionary technology .
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
3/30/2015 | 2:27:46 PM
Re: Timeline
@vnewman2- I have nosy neighbors. Trust me. It takes more than a fence. :)
vnewman2
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vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
3/30/2015 | 2:00:22 PM
Re: Timeline
@David - Zuck is like a nosy neighbor - you have to install a fence around your house to keep him out of your business!
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
3/30/2015 | 1:20:08 PM
Re: The one that will be a hit
@masimon- Yeah, I guess i might have given a cool idea away for free. Maybe this serves as copyright? :)
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
3/30/2015 | 1:15:29 PM
Re: Timeline
@vnewman2- Your friends are chattier than mine, I guess. :)

See, the thing you miss is that Zuck thinks you should talk to each and everyone of those friends the second they see you. That's what Facebook is about. And then you post an instagram of you chatting.
David Wagner
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David Wagner,
User Rank: Strategist
3/30/2015 | 1:10:28 PM
Re: Timeline
@cptdano- In case you didn't know, you can change that with a drop down menu. I used to keep the chronological option on. Now, what I've done instead that makes me even happier is that I unfollowed like 80% of my friends. I didn't unfriend them. I just got their clutter out of my newsfeed. I only kept the people who I really want to know about or who post interesting things. For the rest, I keep them around as Facebook game friends and I occasionally click on their wall to see what I missed. Made my social media life so much happier. Cut the time I used it. But didn't reduce the utility at all.
vnewman2
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vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
3/30/2015 | 12:50:17 PM
Re: Timeline
@Nemos - yes you are probably right. My mother tells me that too. I think my bigger pet peeve is when people see you on Facebook and then call you and get mad when you don't answer because they know you're on your phone! (Thanks Zuck!)
progman2000
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progman2000,
User Rank: Ninja
3/29/2015 | 4:35:11 PM
Re: Timeline
Hey hey hey, I'm one of those people, watch it.

 

(will you be my facebook friend?)
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