12.05.2006

The Semantic Web

2001 Scientific American article by Tim Berners-Lee, James Hendler and Ora Lassila describing the idea.

12.03.2006

Virtual NES

Hope you have java installed. Virtual NES is a trip down memory lane (for those of us old enough.) I had an Atari 2600 and missed out on owning an NES. But now I get to play all those great games...

And many many many many more... Plug in a game controller for 100% retro joy!

11.30.2006

Facebook Has A Coldfusion Group

I continue to monitor my college age son and his friends using Facebook while learning more about what makes sites like Facebook tick. I joined the Coldfusion group. I was glad to see that there is interest in Coldfusion. It seems like all you hear about is PHP, Ruby, Java, etc...

Coldfusion may not be perfect, but it certainly is dependable and easy to use. It takes a minute to learn, but a lifetime to master. It will be interesting to see where Adobe takes it. Hopefully, not to the trash bin.

11.29.2006

One To Watch, MA Governor-Elect Names MS Anti-ODF Lobbyist to Technology Advisory Group

Heads rolled when the CIO of MA suggested that government should save their computer files into formats that are open to everybody. For a good run down on this situation, check CIO MAGAZINE's coverage of the issue.

So, who is Mr. Brian Burke? According to Fels Institute of Government at the University of Pennsylvania,:

Mr. Brian Burke is the Northeast Regional Government Affairs Director for
Microsoft Corporation in New England. Prior to joining Microsoft, Mr.
Burke was the Director of Policy Outreach on the Kerry/Edwards Presidential
campaign and Senior Counsel at Holland & Knight, LLP. Mr. Burke served
in several senior government positions in the Clinton Administration, including,
Senior Policy Analyst on the White House Domestic Policy Council, Deputy
Undersecretary of Agriculture, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army
and Counselor to then Secretary of Energy, Bill Richardson. Brian is a
graduate of Brown University and the Georgetown University Law Center.

11.24.2006

Ski Resorts near Bozeman, Montana:

Distances listed are direct linear distances from the center of the metro area to the ski areas listed, actual driving distance is longer.

11.15.2006

Al Jazeera English TV goes live

Al Jazeera TV is now available in english. It isn't (yet) broadcast and is only available over the Internet (currently).

Alternative Voice or Propoganda?

My guess is it's propoganda since it seems like most U.S. news is commercials. I'll wait till the next world crises and then tune in.

It looks like they are offering a "Free Trial" version but that you need to pay for higher quality video (sorry, no HDTV?)

11.14.2006

Astroturfing: Word Of The Day


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

In politics and advertising, the term astroturfing describes formal public relations (PR) campaigns which seek to create the impression of being a spontaneous, grassroots behavior. Hence the reference to the "AstroTurf" (artificial grass) is a metaphor to indicate "fake grassroots" support.

In 2001, the Los Angeles Times accused Microsoft of astroturfing when hundreds of similar letters were sent to newspapers voicing disagreement with the United States Department of Justice and its antitrust suit against Microsoft. The letters, prepared by Americans for Technology Leadership, had in some cases been mailed from deceased citizens or nonexistent addresses.[1][2][3] (USA Today Microsoft funded 'grass roots' campaign)

So why do I bring this up now? I stumbled upon the appropriately named "The Hive". This is the place for true believers. Don't believe me? read the comments to this post about Zune. A little over the top. My favorite is "I didn't want the Zune at first but now I do. " Man, that was an easy sale.

Here is a comic proudly displayed on the site that makes it clear where you stand.




MS folks seem to be a little sensitive these days.

11.12.2006

Flash Based Desktop


They just keep getting better. From Techcrunch;
"YourMinis is a Flash-based customizable
homepage product that will compete for users with a number of similar products
that use Ajax - Netvibes, Pageflakes, Google, Live.com
and more.
This was launched by a startup called Goowy,
which created a flash-based productivity suite (email, calendar, IM, etc.) last
year - see here for our Goowy
coverage."

10.28.2006

Free Photoshop Plugins and Cliches

Free Photoshop Plugins
Free Cliches

Web Design Tips As Cliche's

  1. Be, the visitor (in best Chevy Chase as Ty Webb voice)
    What is it they want anyhow?
  2. K.I.S.S. (Keep It Simple S)
    Don't Add To Many Features
  3. Content Is King
    One of my favorites and so true.
  4. Details, Details, Details
    All the elements should work together. (graphics, colors, layout, navigation, and content)
  5. Pave the way
    Navigation and Organization are key.

Inspired by Prone Advertising.

Here is some more good advise on web design at Application Generation

  1. Navigation
    Decide on Navigation and Stick To It
  2. Scale
    Large sites need secondary navigation
  3. Consistency
    Keep Navigation Consistent
  4. Similarity
    Use conventions people are familiar with.
  5. Design in the limits of HTML
    HTML has limitiations. Don't fight them.
  6. Screen Resolution
    These change. Think about it.
  7. Design Navigation for Flexibility
    Create a site map.
  8. Design Layout for Flexibility
    Usually have landing page layout, and a content page layout.

Summary: Get a sitemap, decide on a navigation approach, agree a screen resolution and remember that you don’t control the length of the pages.

10.20.2006

See What's Next

Most of the major software / internet players have sites where they preview new development. Here's a short list worth checking out.

Google Labs,

Microsoft Live Labs,

Yahoo Next

Adobe Labs

IE7 big improvement

Used IE7 all day yesterday, testing sites etc. It's a big improvement over IE6 (originally released in 2001). It will be pushed out in "updates" in November so everyone (who gets the updates automatically) will have it soon.

Of course, it's limited to windows, doesn't have the selection of exstenions Firefox has, the phishing filter sends info to MS, etc.etc.etc. But at least it's usable.

10.19.2006

MS Internet Explorer 7 released

It's here and it looks exactly like Firefox. I suspect traditional MSIE users will be completely lost. Firefox user's will be pleased. Will it lead Firefox users back to MS or will it lead MS users to Firefox ? Of course, it's not Firefox . No extensions. And the phishing filter just sends all your viewing habits to microsoft (feel safer now).

10.07.2006

The Problem With Microsoft

Microsoft is in a bad way and it shows in their products. I posted this on another blog, the Internet Outsider during a discussion of Googles over-inflated stock price. I thought it was good, so here it is...

  • Why buy Office when I can use Open Office?
  • Why buy Office when I can use Google Office?
  • Why buy MS OS when I just use the Internet?
  • My kids don't buy games and load them on the PC anymore, they play sophisticated flash games across the internet. My kids have sat down at an Ubuntu machine and not even realized they weren't on a MS OS.
  • Why invest in MS when all they have are promises about the next generation and nothing to show for it today?
  • Why should I develop stuff for MS OS when all they do is compete with me if I become too successful?
  • Why should I pay MS a licensing fee to load MS stuff on my hardware when my customer doesn't care as long as my device works?

9.27.2006

Social Software Not For Everyone

Vitamin's Ryan Carson just wrote a piece about why he doesn't use Social Software. He basically says he's too busy.

Facebook is the only on-line service that has it right at such a complicated level. They have a nice group of services (blog, photo, notes, calendar, groups, friends) and a decent one stop interface to follow along.

The secret is that all the services write a "story" which is aggregated into a continious story of your on-line life.

I'll have to see how well integrated they are with Google Personalized Home Page and MyYahoo.

Facebook is cool.

Facebook is open to everyone now so I created a facebook account. It is very impressive work. It's a shame the advertising is so lame.

Jeff McNaughton's Facebook profile

9.02.2006

Free Music

SpiralFrog plans on giving away a huge amount of music for free. It will be in Windows Media Format and uses MS DRM to protect the music. You will have to contact their web site periodically to make sure the music works and you won't be able to share it. As a result, nobody will use it.

8.31.2006

Social media

Social media describes the online tools and platforms that people use to share opinions, insights, experiences, and perspectives with each other. Social media can take many different forms, including text, images, audio, and video. Popular social mediums include blogs, message boards, podcasts, wikis, and vlogs.

The Social Media Blog follows along.

8.26.2006

RAW vs. JPEG

Nice explaination of RAW vs. JPEG and a list of nice software:

What software is good to use with Raw?

Personally, for JPEG, I really like Paint Shop Pro.

8.22.2006

David has a web page

http://david.blindman.googlepages.com/

He's off to college so I set him up with some tools to communicate. A google page and a blog. Not sure if he'll use them much. He'll use his facebook more.

8.19.2006

Macbook Rocks

I just bought my son a MacBook for going to college. I have been a life-long microsoft / p.c. user so this wasn't done lightly. My kids have tested my PC administration skills over the years and they finally broke me down. After XP locked up solid, I re-installed the system only to find I couldn't get my licensed version of Office to work. Who knows whats wrong. It shouldn't be that difficult.

The macbook has worked great and is a lot of fun to use. If only Battlefield 2142 worked on a Mac I would buy another for myself.

The Ohio to Erie Trail

I am doing a little volunteering for a non-profit group on their web site. You can see the mock up and compare it to the current site.

The Ohio to Erie Trail spans the state of Ohio from Cincinatti to Cleveland following lands formerly owned by railroads and canals. When complete, this trail will connect four of Ohio's metropolitan cities, a dozen large towns and numerous small villages - all done on easily accessible, paved trails, that are completely separated from highways and automobiles.

Along the way, the trail passes through rural areas, farmlands, nature preserves, and regional parks giving the adventurous a hearty helping of nature's finest. At the metropolitan perimeter, meadows and woods give way to exciting urban centers, affording the traveller a contemporary taste of Ohio's culture and arts.

Bicyclists, hikers, equestrians, and other groups such as bird watchers, cross-country skiers, and nature lovers have the opportunity to explore the natural beauty of Ohio as the trail weaves its way across the state.

5.05.2006

CF Frappr group

Frappr is a mash-up networking site that includes maps, photos, and chatting. Somebody created a CF Frappr group.

4.25.2006

Zillow Home Comparisons

I was just looking at Zillow. Zillow is a web site that estimates what a house is worth. It shows a map of the area and comparible houses. After looking at it, it looks like it probably is better when the area has a lot of turn over or recent sales. Figures look a little low in growing areas for houses that have been established and haven't sold recently.

Freeware For Your USB Drive

The list includes:

4.07.2006

“Bahlaqeem.” (pronounced baalakeem)

I was looking at the news in Ohio and stumbled across this one:

The Ohio State Chiropractic Board has brought a complaint against James Burda which says he can’t provide services "according to acceptable and prevailing standards of care due to mental illness, specifically, Delusional Disorder, Grandiose Type."

Jimbo Burda evidently travels back in time to treat patients in the past to make them feel better today, so no office visit is needed. Jimbo also invented a word for this technique, “Bahlaqeem.” (pronounced baalakeem)

Here’s a little info from Jimbo’s website:

Information about James Burda
I live in a small Ohio town where I do my work. I learned about my gift three years ago. While driving to a nearby city in order to do shopping my left foot started to hurt. Just for amusement, I made a guess as to the exact bone involved with the pain, told the bone to realign, and the pain went away almost instantly. What a happy surprise I had. During another trip, the same thing happened. I thought that there was something happening which was very special.

Bahlaqeem Name Origin
The name Bahlaqeem (pronounced baalakeem) came to me during a period of inspiration. It is a madeup word and, to my knowledge, has no known meaning except for this intended purpose. It does, however, have a soothing vibrational influence and contains the very special number of nine letters.

4.05.2006

Google deal highlights Web 2.0 boom

from News.Com: Google deal highlights Web 2.0 boom

snippet:


Online Calendars: One of the more active areas, with offerings from 30 Boxes, CalendarHub, Trumba, Joyent, Kiko, Planzo and Spongecell.

Productivity application suites: Full-blown applications bundles offered by the likes of HyperOffice, gOffice and ThinkFree.

E-mail and collaboration: Examples include Goowy, Zimbra, Meebo (Web-based instant messaging) and Jotspot (hosted Wikis).

Project management and personal organizers: AirSet, 37Signals.com, Zohoplanner and Stikipad.

Multimedia social software: Includes sites like the popular Flickr photo sharing service, Riya (photo search), You Tube (video sharing) and Podbop (music podcasting).

4.04.2006

Microsoft Stumbling?

Is Microsoft stumbling? Daniel Lyons at Forbes seems to think so in a Opinion piece on 3-22-06. Personally, I can't judge. I thought they stumbled from about 1995 onward. But they seem to just keep plugging away earning more money.

3.24.2006

More Evil Web 2.0

Brought to my attention from Tech Crunch, more of the Dark Side of Web 2.0.

Jigsaw is a marketplace for contact information, and it is very efficient. If boasts detailed personal contact information for 2.5 million people, and 7,000 new people are added every day. If you want the name, title, email address, direct phone line and/or address of any executive of any company, there is a very good chance Jigsaw will already have it in its database and will sell it to you. And if you are a sales guy and have no ethical concerns about where you get your contact information, you probably already know all about Jigsaw.

3.20.2006

CFMX and AJAX

From Fusion Authority


Available Implementations and Libraries

A number of libraries and frameworks are available that will prevent the ColdFusion developer from reinventing the wheel:

Data Exchange Parsers:

Cylinder Preservation and Digitization Project

For those really hard to find recordings. The University of California has been hard at work preserving early recordings for everyone.













3.16.2006

Some useful Web 2.0 Links

My favorite parts from a list by Bob Stumpel on Open BC


CALENDAR 2.0
30boxes - Manage & share calendar. http://30boxes.com/
Calendarhub - Create & share calendars. http://www.calendarhub.com/
Eventful - Create & share events. http://eventful.com/
Eventicus - Create & share events. http://www.eventicus.de/?lang=en
Eventsniper - Mix your event calendar with feeds. http://www.eventsniper.com/
Hipcal - Manage & share calendar & to do lists. http://www.hipcal.com/
Meetwithapproval - Arrange meetings & events online. http://www.meetwithapproval.com/
Mosuki - Arrange meetings & events online. http://mosuki.com/
Planzo - Arrange meetings & events online & thru sms. http://planzo.com/
Skobee - Arrange meetings & events online. http://www.skobee.com/
Spongecell - Arrange meetings & events online; with a.i. http://spongecell.com/
Tilika - Share calendars. http://www.tilika.com/
Trumba - Create& share events. http://www.trumba.com/
Upcoming - Create, manage & share events. http://upcoming.org/


CRM 2.0
24sevenoffice - Web-based crm & erp. http://www.24sevenoffice.com/
Helpspot - Wen nased help desk software. http://www.userscape.com/
Pushcrm - Web-based crm. http://pushcrm.com/
Simpleticket - Helpdesk solution. http://www.simpleticket.net/
Userscape - Web based help desk portal. http://www.userscape.com/
Zohocrm - Web-based crm. http://www.zohocrm.com/

DICTIONARY 2.0
Visualthesaurus - Find & visualize synonyms. http://www.visualthesaurus.com/

EMAIL 2.0
Dropsend - Email large files. http://www.dropsend.com/
Mail2RSS - Inmail2RSS. http://www.mail2rss.org/
Myemail - Check email anywhere. http://myemail.com/
Newsletterarchive* - Store & share your newsletters. http://www.newsletterarchive.org/
Onesens - Send teasing webmail messages. http://www.onesens.com/
Quickmail - Email2RSS. http://quickmail.johanfitie.com/
Sendspace - Email large files. http://www.sendspace.com/
Tempinbox - Receive inmail anonymously. http://www.tempinbox.com/
Trustmymail - Spam filter based on your circle of contacts. http://www.trustmymail.com/
Yousendit - Email large files. http://www.yousendit.com/
Irows - Web based spreadsheet. http://www.irows.com
Numbler - Excel spreadsheet online. http://numbler.com/
Numsum - Collaborate online on spreadsheets. http://numsum.com/
Sundera - Collaborate online on spreadsheets. http://www.sundera.com/

Office 2.0
Thinkfree - Web based office suite. http://online.thinkfree.com/
Zohovirtualoffice - Online office suite. http://www.zoho.com/virtual-office/


SCHEDULING 2.0
Buddyping - Find friends & events locally (map mash-up). http://www.buddyping.com/
Goovite - Invite people. http://www.goovite.com/
Kiko - Onlin calendar. http://www.kiko.com/
Meetwithapproval - Organize & manage meetings. http://www.meetwithapproval.com/
Zvents - Organize & manage events. http://www.zvents.com/

WORD 2.0
Barewiki - Make a wiki in seconds. http://barewiki.com/
Fckeditor - Web based word processor. http://www.fckeditor.net/
Formassembly - Create, host & manage forms. http://www.formassembly.com/
Goffice - Web based word processing. http://www.goffice.com/
Ijot - Write, manage, publcish share text files. http://www.ijot.net/
Inetword - Web based word processing. http://www.inetword.com/
Jotform - Make your Ajax webforms. http://www.jotform.com/
Litespellchecker - Check spelling as you type. http://me.eae.net/stuff/litespellchecker/litedemo.html
Nativetext - Translates rss in foreign languages. http://www.nativetext.com/
Orangoo - Spelling checker. http://www.orangoo.com/spell/
Pbwiki - Make a wiki. http://pbwiki.com/
Synchroedit - Group editor. http://www.synchroedit.com/
Wideword - Collaborative word processing. https://www.wideword.net/
Wideword - Create & share documents online. https://wideword.net/
Writeboard* - Write, share, revise & compare documents. http://writeboard.com/
Writely - Store, edit & share documents. http://www.writely.com
Zohowriter - Online word processor. http://www.zohowriter.com

WRITE 2.0
Bigoven - Publish & share recipes. http://www.bigoven.com/
Extratasty - publish & share drink recipes. http://www.extratasty.com/
Travbuddy - Submit & share travel stories. http://www.travbuddy.com/