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Archive for February, 2007

Linux Video for the Day

It gets better/best towards the end. If you don’t believe me, skip the first 5 minutes.

It does not show some of the latest Beryl flash and features, e.g. wall plugin, window previews, burning/fragmenting windows…

Tags, Categories and Search for Content Digestion

Tags cloud

THE boundary between tags and channels, which are the means by which Netscape organises content, is becoming fuzzy. It seems like the former is likely to replace the latter, in due time.

Social news or meta-journalism appear to catch on as more and more large companies adopt them. Organisation of the user-contributed content, however, remains a tricky business. Categories, sections, and front pages no longer seem to work as there are better ways of delivering targetted content. The solution may be to personalise it all.

The use of tags is probably under-appreciated. When accommodated properly (e.g. not diluted through pluralisation), then assuming many submissions, a tag will appear in the tags cloud. Then, it will become available as an RSS feed or a vibrant Web page. Personally, I track tags of interest, rather than channels. Channels are a bit ‘old school’ because they mimic and inherit the limitations of traditional papers where one size fits all.

Categories are by nature static, so emerging hot topics will just expand or eliminate categories, leading to clutter or obsolesce, respectively. Even Digg constantly ignores the requests for new categories. But Digg has got word tracking (search as feeds), not tags, which is an inferior alternative. Unfortunately, at busy times of the day, Digg arbitrarily rejects requests for this type of feeds. They are resource hungry when generated. And that’s where Netscape is ahead.

Air Travel and the Environment

Big Plane

I am no longer excited about travelling for a variety of very valid reasons. But I think I may have just found a good excuse, as well.

One particular part of the article that caught my attention is this:

Air travel

“Green” travellers are boycotting air travel because of climate change. Campaigners have staged sit-ins at airports while hundreds of people have signed up to an online pledge set up by a veteran environmental campaigner. An estimated 3 per cent of people have stopped flying to help the environment, while 10 per cent are cutting back on flights.

More Water, Less Land

Season of the playful penguins
Season of the playful penguins from Oyonale

Dead penguins, dead polar bears, larger oceans, and houses under water. Is this the future?

The world’s largest tropical glacier is in danger of disappearing within five years, according to international researchers meeting this week in San Francisco.

Take action and reduce waste. Every little helps.

Let us borrow this story and translate its impact to aspects of software development. In programming, greater reuse of code translates into fewer ‘seats’. Dependently, programmers require waste. Without waste and reproduction there is better utilisation of code replication capabilities. And then there’s commercial software that thrives in waste, leading to a morbid & spontaneous spasm in Mother Nature. Let’s work for Earth, not against it.

Alexa Flatters Windows-oriented Web Sites

OVER the years, my love-hate relationship with Alexa has transformed into a hate-hate relationship. As many people exploit an already-fragile and susceptible-to-abuse system, Alexa traffic ranks usually lie.

A9 logoI still remember the time when I discovered Alexa ranks. I soon discovered mistakes in their approach. Then, when Microsoft made its predatory deal with A9, Firefox got excluded from Alexa’s figures.

Months afterwards, as Alexa gained attraction and people treated it as though it really gauged traffic reliably, more Webmasters abused it. Vanity led to greed. Alexa began to lie more than ever before. Even Netcraft’s figures, which are not quite as famous as Alexa, have bcome more reasonable over time. Here is a new blog item that says much more on the topic.

If you have a site which is mostly for an audience of Mac users or maybe a site which attracts Linux users or even one which has something to do with open source software, you could have a very low percentage of your audience using Internet Explorer. Mac users really don’t have an IE option at this point and many people just don’t use it because of security risks.

Of course, Alexa only collects data from Internet Explorer. I think this sums it all up rather nicely.

Blogging Gear Downed, Electricity Goes Through Ceiling

MY blogging pace has certainly changed recently. I have slowed down in order to give way and priority to other activities. Regardless, I have also been inactive because my father was visiting. He departed this afternoon.

All in all, however, it’s acceptable and very much aligned with my intentions. I am beginning to think of rearranging my blog and let is revolve around links and short opinions. I’ll make a start with a piece of news that caught my sight the other day.

Study Commissioned by AMD Reveals Scope of Annual U.S. Data Center Energy Consumption: 45 Billion kWh, at Cost of Nearly 3 Billion Dollars

AMD Calls for Increased Collaboration between Technology Industry and Government Officials to Track and Reduce Energy Consumption

Antennas and satellite dishes

GNU/Linux – Desktop of the Future

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