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Tom Rolfson
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Lives in Racine, WI
48,916 followers|3,121,079 views
Have him in circles
48,916 people
Internet Pioneer, Developer, Domain Investor & Broker
    The guy pulling levers and ropes behind the curtain, 1991 - present
  • ProLink
    Social Network Development, 1991 - 2011
Basic Information
July 25
Other names
Major Instigator, Master Of The Internet (
Expect Success! *Then continue to take the action to make it happen.
Tom Rolfson is a serial entrepreneur, an investor, a producer, and marketer.  Well, so are a lot of people.  The difference with Tom is, he’s the one who has the vision, he’s the one who does it first.

Tom is an innovator.  He pioneered taking the first bulletin board technology and putting it into commercial use.  He taught the United States Secret Service about the very first online credit card fraud committed on his Bulletin Board System (ProLink) in 1991.  Also that year, he launched his first social network and co-founded the world’s first privately-held global social network.  Three years later he had his first dot com (which predates, Yahoo, Amazon, and MSN).  And he was even the first person to sell concert tickets online in 1994.  Yes, even before Ticketmaster.  Tom sold his first dot com business in 1995.  That’s before there ever was a Google.  He has assisted local, state and federal authorities apprehend those who commit identity theft.  He has also helped to catch sexual predators, and pedophiles.  
Born and raised in Wisconsin, it’s no surprise his blood runs green and gold for the Packers.  His urge to create was honed early on and by the age of 16 he had created and developed his very first corporation.  He can not only create a business, but can build a house, a hot rod, or a classic show car such as his beloved blue ’65 Impala.

Red is his favorite color of late, the red of Google Plus (Google+). Since Google+ went live in June 2011, Tom Rolfson has been a leading visionary regarding the group video chat hangout technology.  He invested in the very first Daria Musk concert which took place July 23, 2011.  That landmark event brought Tom’s know-how to the right place at the right time.

Starting in September of 2011, Tom has assisted companies as large as Dell and as small as an independent pottery maker on how to use Google+ hangouts for tech support and marketing.

He was a driving force behind the hangout in October of 2011 where environmentalists from all over the globe hung out to discuss conservation issues, including one panelist joining from his vehicle on the plains of Africa.   Halloween of 2011 had Tom organizing the Google+ Halloween Hangout costume party and worldwide concert event.  His direction and investment made prizes available to the participants.
Tom sees the Google+ Hangout technology as a game-changer and took it to Las Vegas in December of 2011.  There, he streamed a hangout from a hospitality suite overlooking the strip so professional touring musicians could be showcased for booking agents attending the International Fairs and Expos Conference.

Tom helped raise thousands of dollars for cancer-related charities (including Locks of Love) in May 2012 with the Global Hangout-A-Thon in which two people shaved their heads and one running a marathon.
Boardwatch Magazine said he was one of the first 100 people to make a living online.  He was just one of a handful of those who saw the potential of combining business to social media and cutting edge technology.   And it all started when his father taught him how to connect with mainframe computers in 1973 (at the age of 12).  Boardwatch was right then.  And they’re still right.  

Tom Rolfson continues to make a very successful living online in business and people.  He knows how to bring them all together and make them work seamlessly.    He is very involved with Google + as cited in recent articles in Forbes,  Inc, NBC, and WebProNews.
Bragging rights
I started marketing online and registered my first domain name in July '94. (Before there were AOL, Yahoo, MSN, eBay or Amazon .coms)
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Racine, WI
Florida - Wisconsin
Contact Information


One more (and perhaps best) reason to make sure you've got your business listed on +Google Maps.

#Maps   #LocalSearch  
Save time with Maps autocomplete in Google Calendar on Android

Since December, you've been able to create events faster with Google Maps autocomplete on the desktop  ( Starting today, you can save time (and tapping!) when creating events on the go in Google Calendar for Android. Using the power of Google Maps, Calendar autocompletes addresses as you type so you can quickly and accurately add locations to your events, ensuring you and your friends all end up at the right place. 

You can download the official Google Calendar app from Google Play:
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+Waze, I believe, draws info from this as well. Very useful.
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Time for a new Sunday drive? 

Dany Pinard's profile photoStuart O'Neill's profile photoTom Ligman's profile photoDaniel Lawrence's profile photo
+Tom Ligman Have you ever driven anything close to this? You could say the same thing about virtually any form of recreational vehicle. Boats, planes, jetski/waverunners. Depending how the perspective you could even take it to include skateboards, rollerblades, mountain bikes, street racing bicycles. Plus let's not forget, there are many perfectly legal places to take a car like this off-road for legal fun. I spent almost every weekend last summer in a fast convertible Vette... no tickets, no accidents, no injuries but wind in my hair, sun and stars above.  Sometimes casually sightseeing, sometimes "going places" as quick and legally possible, sometimes even hauling groceries and enjoying the fresh-air and weather like you can't get on a bike doing the same thing. Remember we live in this awesome country which gives us so many freedoms to enjoy the passtimes we desire. As a driver of something less powerful you might not appreciate this, as a hiker I might say that mountain bikers are going too fast, make too much noise or are a danger on our trails.   ;) 
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Sex Offender/Pedophile Search - You Can Help

He can run but he can't hide from the reach of all the good people online. Take a look at these pictures and see if you can help identify him.

#FBI   #MostWanted   #Pedophile  
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Tom Rolfson

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Live Sex Hard Drugs Devil Worship 
Who wants VIP Passes to this new club? 
Downtown residents and civic leaders thought they had a moral crisis on their hands when Silk Exotic applied for a license for a strip club on Water Street. But, depending on who you talk to, either they shouldve been grateful for that proposals restraint - or the approval let the genie out of the bottle. Because the cabaret application for the new location of Heartbreakers II is turning heads and G-strings all over Milwaukee.
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Sometime in the next few months, I expect. House is going up for sale soon, so I'll have to get it fully prepped after my tenants move out. 
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I don't know whether I'm more saddened or angry about this...

Many of my friends know the time that +Justin Wheeler and I have been investing in doing a documentary about this cemetery.

The history of the place is incredible. This is the resting place of soldiers dating all the way back to the Revolutionary War who served under George Washington. There is a Congressional Medal of Honor winner who gave his life while rescuing wounded soldiers in combat during WW II. There are some industry titans: Sam Johnson (Johnson Wax), JI Case (Tractors), William Horlick (Horlick's Malted Milk - every drink a "malt"?), Abraham Lincoln's photographer and many more noteworthy people remembered here. Stay tuned, we'll be sharing the full story soon. 

How can you help?

I trust that justice will prevail in finding the perpetrators who did this. But please, if you have kids take a moment to teach them about the value of this kind of history and how a momentary senseless act like this can cause more damage than they might imagine. 

P.S. Be sure to circle +Justin Wheeler too!

#MoundCemetery   #Racine  
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I think it angers me more than anything. It just isn't right. I know I can't change what's been done, but it just FROSTS MY COOKIES!!! 
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One of those simple but perfect additions for my treadmill. 

#LifeHacker   #Treadmill  
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+Ola Birch 
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Are you a member of a food/grocery coop? What's your experience been? 

I went to the meeting tonight and am firmly convinced this is the best thing any of us can do for our communities. As one member put it.. "It's the Anti-Walmart".  If you're in/around Racine, WI please visit and join us to help bring locally grown and organic food to more people. 

We visited the Wild Root Market Coop Annual Owner's Meeting and learned why so many are quickly becoming Member/Owners of this exciting project. Racine, WI will soon have it's first coop food store that will feature locally grown and organic produce.

#WildRootMarket   #Coop   #Racine  
Tom Rolfson's profile photoJim Preston's profile photo
+Jim Preston but do they put effort in buying local and organic? We don't have a CostCo close... and it's amazing how with so many different fruits and veggies grown here how hard it is to find in chain stores. 
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Tom Rolfson

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+Robert Anderson hits the nail on the head with what so many of us believe about Google+'s shortcomings. 

*Please reply/comment on the original thread. 
I think Google Plus has great potential.  I think it is underachieving.

At the risk of being relegated to the darkness of some forgotten corner of Google Plus here are my thoughts on what could make this a better experience.  What I am about to say should be taken with a gain of salt because I do not have a view behind the curtain. But as a user since back in the day I think I have some perspective.  I wrote a book with +Seth Goldstein about a year into Google Plus that we decided not to publish in part because of the evolving nature of the space.  We decided to wait for a mature product.   I don't think the product is mature yet but maybe it is time to open the pages on this project once again. 

It starts with circle management.  Third party engagement tools still don't quantify and qualify my audience.  We tried to do something simple like map followers to help define engagement for +Sarah Hill so that her bosses could understand the audience she was reaching a very long time ago.  It was clumsy but we did it. I lost interest when the API became less useful as third party developers watched their creativity get chucked in the bin overnight.  

Either build the tools that business, brands and users need to reach their audience or open the API and let third parties do it.  Why on God's green earth did Google destroy one of the best features of Google plus that +Robert Pitt  and +Brian Aldridge  built?

+Tim Moore  and I were working very hard on a great idea that we abandoned when we found out Google was going to do it too.  I think we would have had a better product but you can't compete with the house and win unless you are an foolish and hungry.  

I have always said that hangouts are the most important innovation in communications since the campfire and the telephone.  +Michael Crawford +Tom Rolfson +Paul Terry Walhus +Daniel Fontaine +Ken Smith  +Hermine Ngnomire  and I explored some early innovations that died on the vine for lack of an API for Circle Management and Hangouts.  I spoke with three of the companies that had early access to the API they were largely clueless.  Like Derp clueless.

Hangouts. Stunning product, overly complicated and finicky as a communications device.  There is a reason WhatsApp is so hot.  It is simple and it works. I have hangouts too on my phone but Viber and WhatsApp get it done simply.

I find myself dragging people uphill to explain why Google Plus matters and how to use it.  It should be obvious.  It's not.  I have talked with senior people at major brands and they just don't get it.  Maybe I am a bad communicator.  Maybe I should take a trip out to the campus and try to get my head around what I am missing.

Maybe some UI UX people to go with the engineers and marketing folks.  Just saying.

As far as the algorithm is concerned how does someone with 22k followers have 9,146,790 views.  That's not luck.

+Tom Rolfson +Amanda Blain +Stacy Frazer +Stephanie Van Pelt +Peter G McDermott +Christopher Lira +Cam Meadows +Sarah Hill +Seth Goldstein  Thoughts? Back me up or throw me under the bus. 

Awhile back +Vic Gundotra realigned my thought process on Google's perspective.  Maybe it's time for another adjustment.
I think Google Plus is amazing.  I think it could be better.

A+ student, C+ work.

Still a better social media story than Facebook.
Not all traffic is created equal

Where will you invest your time and where do you get the greatest return? 

#Google   #YouTube   #LinkedIn   #Facebook  
su ann lim's profile photoTom Rolfson's profile photoBenjamin Maller's profile photo
+su ann lim Without a doubt. I'll admit, I've had to resort to using FB for some advertising and marketing again. I wish I didn't but Google's moving too slow for G+ to serve those needs. 
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For all the +Star Wars fans out there.  This guy plays the theme song on this incredible five keyboard pipe organ - that is in someone's house.

#StarWars   #PipeOrgan   #Racine  
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Absolutely fantastic!!
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I often eat at Culver's throughout SE WI but recently ate at this location only to have the worst burger and dining experience encountered at any fast food establishment. It began by finding food and grease on the table and having to wipe it off the table and seating ourselves. This was followed by a longer than usual wait for food to be brought to the table, it was 7:15p on a Saturday and the crowd was thinning- not a rush hour. When the food arrived one of the two drinks was not delivered - the server was quick and apologetic bringing the missing drink out quickly. One of the sandwiches was the featured "Peppercorn Burger". The burger was dry, there was an excess of sauce dripping from it and it was barely warm. By the end it was unappealing and nearly inedible leaving part of it to be thrown away. Summation: Spending $20 for 2 sandwiches, 2 fries and 2 drinks... to get this quality of food and service was nowhere near a decent value. The next time I'll remember I'm a few hundred yards from Applebee's, spend a couple dollars more and go there for full-service and ultimately better food.
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Public - 4 months ago
reviewed 4 months ago
Ordered online, pizza was delivered on time. (Arrived in 50 minutes while promise was 60). Good thin crust pizza, excellent sauce but toppings a little on the thin/light side. Driver was professional and courteous. Will order from Rosati's again.
Public - 5 months ago
reviewed 5 months ago
Thinking about going to the Barnes & Noble cafe across the street? Don't. You'll find much more comfortable seating, better WiFi, plenty out outlets and great service. The staff is always quick, friendly and eager to share samples of new coffees. The only drawback is the size, seating can be limited during peak times.
Food: Very goodDecor: Very goodService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
"Georgie" and family continue to improve an already great 20+ year tradition of excellent food and service.
Food: ExcellentDecor: ExcellentService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
11 reviews
I can always find fun hats and shirts here! I recommend the store to all visitors and residents of Racine. Be sure to ask Mary (the proprietor) for the inside scoop on what fun and events are happening in the Racine area.
Quality: ExcellentAppeal: ExcellentService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
The cafe sucks for having no outlets. When I contacted corporate they said they didn't want cords all over. As a result the Starbucks and Caribou nearby are always full and preferred. Not to mention missing ceiling tiles, cracked walls and leaking roof.
Quality: GoodAppeal: Poor to fairService: Good
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago
I've searched for great pizza in almost every city I've ever been in - Wells Brothers has always been one of the best. And consistent... my parents went here on dates before I was born 50 years ago. I think it's safe to say they have a winning formula.
Food: ExcellentDecor: Very goodService: Excellent
Public - a year ago
reviewed a year ago