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Archive for April, 2005

Internet Without a Language

Many different forms exist for conversation over the Internet: site forums, wikis, newsgroups, IRC, blogs, mailing lists, IM and so forth. Each of these requires an application to be accessed — a Web browser being the most common among these applications.

The different communication methods have pros and cons, but they all can be bridged. All should be intrinsically entwined. Commercial interests have often pushed conversation protocols apart and disintegrated them to form the chaotic state we are in today. The result: poor compatibility, inter-operability and an endless number of installed applications, all of which are needed in order to keep up with the changing times (and people).

Will somebody, once and for all, take initiative and work towards a single comprehensive package?

RSSOwl screenshot

Feeds have come a long way towards efficient,
standardised form of one-way communication.

Managing E-mail on a Personal Domain

I am hoping to explain why spam, to me, has never been a real problem. I recently lost track of the ‘flowchart’ of my mail, so I visualised it for myself and later decided to make it public.

Some months ago I mentioned the need to separate boxes. Different addresses can then be disclosed to different people/sites. Below is an illustration of how my mail is managed at the time of writing (click to view in a legible size). None of the filters is a spam filter, hence no message is abolished; that’s where the power of this technique truly lies.

Mail framework

Google Results as RSS Feeds

Thanks to a wonderful tool from Ben Hammersley, search results from Google can be delivered as RSS feeds. Similar projects seem to have been brought down, perhaps by Google, so exploit it while it lasts.

Vis-a-vis Google results en masse, I updated my Google Cron tool, which aggregates statistics, PageRank etc. in a text file, updates it overnight, and flags changes.

Microsoft Battles Screenshots

According to Slashdot, Microsoft demanded the removal of screenshots from its Longhorn beta version, which was described by some as “disappointing”.

After the previously reported release of the Longhorn beta at this year’s WinHEC, Neowin and other Windows sites are reporting that Microsoft is going around sending legal letters demanding removal of Longhorn Build 5048 screenshots.

Below are screenshots of older betas.

Longhorn screenshot

Microsoft to Fight PDF’s

Bill Gates
Bill Gates arrested in his younger days (photo in public domain)

Shortly after Adobe’s acquisition of Macromedia, Microsoft infiltrate Adobe territories by introducing their own portable document format called “Metro”, which is based on XML.

Towards On-Line Operating Systems

Servers lineWhile the title is an overstatement, it describes a trend which is yet to transform IT as we know it.

What is it all about? Moving all functionality to the Web server (analogous to computational servers), thereby using our workstation as merely a terminal to back-room dust-collecting equipment. Much like Web servers, load is better handled remotely, where parallelised infrastructures make maximal, persistent use of the hardware.

The use of AJAX-like technologies and increased bandwidth make this considerable step towards remote operating systems practical. There are a few unavoidable stepping stones though:

  • More widespread high-speed connections
  • Higher-capacity network backbones
  • Demise of desktop-side software
  • Closer Desktop-Web integration/coupling
  • Decrease in cost of storage devices (e.g. Conversation Comments Off | Mail Send this to a friend

Managing To-Do Lists On-Line

Services that manage lists of tasks on-line spread rather quickly. Matt Mullenweg recently announced:

Someone cloned all of Ta-da List into Bla-Blah List which uses Flash for the interface instead of HTML/JS.


A diary that is well-integrated with mail accounts and accessible via the Internet
click image to view in full size

I have come across similar features in recent versions of Horde (shown above). I truly believe that these tools can compete with PDA‘s, especially when content is edited in collaboration with a team. All software mentioned, by the way, is completely free.

Cited by: PalmAddict

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