Last Build Date: Tue, 21 Aug 2007 23:09:07 +0000
Tue, 15 May 2007 01:02:00 +0000(image)
Wed, 02 May 2007 12:13:00 +0000(image) The past 24 hours have been interesting ones over at Digg. In an attempt to keep itself out of trouble, Digg had been deleting user-submitted stories containing the hexadecimal code to crack HD-DVD's.
Now, thousands of net enthusiasts have frantically Digged that post (and any post containing the code) in an attempt to stick it to the man. I certainly have no problems with this post ending up on Digg's front page ;)
But now, after seeing hundreds of stories and reading thousands of comments, you’ve made it clear. You’d rather see Digg go down fighting than bow down to a bigger company. We hear you, and effective immediately we won’t delete stories or comments containing the code and will deal with whatever the consequences might be.
If we lose, then what the hell, at least we died trying.
Sat, 28 Apr 2007 21:05:00 +0000I wanted to share this clip from the Jon Stewart Show. I'm a big fan of the show, and they usually do a fantastic job of making people seem silly through clever satirical interviews. This is one time, however, that they could just sit back and film ...
Thu, 26 Apr 2007 13:02:00 +0000I've been meaning to adopt Saman's great SpeedLinking idea on his site Samanathon.com for some time. Well today I decided to finally dive in ... but with a twist.
Sun, 22 Apr 2007 20:20:00 +0000I came upon this video showing off Sun Microsystem's concept of a 3D open source GUI environment that they call "Looking Glass". While the notes talk about a lot of translucency effects (yawn - that's not exactly groundbreaking anymore with Vista and OS X), there is a lot of cool thought going into how to interact with desktop objects in 3 dimensions instead of 2.
Thu, 19 Apr 2007 14:40:00 +0000About one week ago, I made a post entitled Riding the Technorati Favorite Train about a link and favorite train started by Mr. Gary Lee. Many visitors to this site may be wondering just how much of an impact something like this can have on a Technorati ranking.
Mon, 16 Apr 2007 14:06:00 +0000There has been a lot of discussion in the past several months on this blog (see Is black the new white?) and all across the web about Apple's apparent shift to a darker user interface. The dark background with light accent is seen quite obviously in their Apple TV interface, as well as the UI for the iPhone.What struck me, however, is that Apple's own web site mirrors these shifts in design philosophy. The iTunes and iPod section of their site, used to have a white background similar to the header bar, with simple boxes for the different types of iPods (see this archived here). In contrast, if you visit the iPod + iTunes section of the site now, you are greeted with the very slick black on black background graphics, complete with "Core" Animation-powered header.It seems that Apple has taken to toying with how this new UI might look, with subtle differences between even recently launched sections of the site. Look again more closely at the AppleTV and iPhone sections of the site. Both of these sections were designed several months ago, and feature a more straightforward white on black theme. The newly redesigned iPod section features some subtle variations in shade, with site subsections being "highlighted" to a deep grey when selected.Yesterday, Apple launched Final Cut Studio 2, and with it a new section on its site. This section seems to reveal some more tinkering with this new dark aesthetic. Firstly, the main background is not a pure black, but rather a very deep grey (or soft black if you prefer). Next, the subtle "highlight" when selecting different options on the right is even more subtle than on the iTunes site. Lastly, there is a new element, with a black background callout box appearing above elements of the software suite when moused over (see image). This has not been used on any part of the site before as far as I know. Could this represent a new UI element to provide information on files, etc. if you leave your mouse over an object (like "tool tips")?I'm not going to go out on a limb and say that this IS what Leopard (or even OS XI, OS 11 or whatever the next major iteration will be called). But it is very interesting to see where the design direction on Apple's site is going. I think we can learn a lot about what to expect from Apple's design studios in the future by watching how Apple.com develops.Now ... how long before the Aqua header bar gets a makeover? [...]
Sat, 14 Apr 2007 17:05:00 +0000Some of you may have already seen the long-running Red vs. Blue video series which use video games to animate their content. In this episode, the characters demonstrate how the Internet is different from real life.
Thu, 12 Apr 2007 02:09:00 +0000This is a first for me, but I just found out that Mr. Gary Lee has included me on his list of Technorati Favorites (thanks for that Gary!). What makes this different, is that Gary has started a Technorati Favorite train that helps everyone on it with some back links, as well as a higher Technorati rating (and the presence on more Favorite lists) which may just help to boost your traffic. So check out the rules and the list below, and find some new blogs to add to your favorite list!***Start Copying Here:*** Here are the rules: 1) Write a short introduction paragraph about what how you found the list and include a link to the blog that referred you to the list. 2) COPY the Rules and ENTIRE List below and post it to your blog. To avoid duplicate content and increase the amount of keywords your site can accessible for, go ahead and change the titles of the blog. Just don’t change the links of the blog. 3) Take “My New Faves” and move them into the “The Original Faves” list. 4) Add 3 Blogs that you’ve just added to your Technorati Favorites to the “My New Faves” section. Remember to also add the “Fave Me” link next to your new blogs (i.e. http://technorati.com/faves?sub=addfavbtn&add=http://www.yourfavesdomain.com) 5) Add Everyone on this list to your Technorati Favorites List by clicking on “Fave the Site.” Those who want good karma will fave you back. If not, you will for sure get the benefits of faves from the bloggers who continue this list after you. My New FavesThe Wrong Advices - Fave the Sitederrich.com - Fave the SiteShawn-Knight.net - Fave the Site The Original Faves Stephen Fung - Fave the Site Add him to your favorites and he’ll donate to charity!Ed Lau - Fave the SiteQMusings - Fave the SiteGary Lee - Fave the Site Dosh Dosh - Fave the SiteNate Whitehill - Fave the Site Ms. Danielle - Fave the Site Jeff Kee - Fave the Site Scribble on the Wall - Fave the Site Jimi Morrisons Head - Fave the Site Jon Lee - Fave the SiteSamanathon - Fave the SiteEat Drink & Be Merry - Fave the SiteThe Man of Silver - Fave the SiteHannes Johnson - Fave the SiteMy Dandelion Patch - Fave the SiteNathan Drach - Fave the Site SiteLogic - Fave the SiteJulies Journal - Fave the Site***End Copying Here***And that is that. So get on the Technorati Favorite train, and find some new sites, and new fans in the process! [...]
Wed, 11 Apr 2007 21:30:00 +0000
I couldn't resist sharing this video. At first it might not be apparent what's going on, but it's a wonderful tongue-in-cheek look at Microsoft's "originality" in OS features.
Sun, 08 Apr 2007 16:30:00 +0000When you are looking for a new movie to watch in the theater or on DVD, there are many sites to visit in order to read reviews and decide on what to watch. You can go seek out the latest Ebert & Roeper review, check the NY Times Movie page or your local newspaper.Rotten Tomatoes is a well-established site that has carved out a successful niche by combining the reviews from major newspaper, TV and web critics (and even some not so major reviewers) into a "Tomato Meter rating". This helps the potential viewer, because you get to read a number of different opinions, and decide which sources you like best. This "metareview" concept represents a convenient way to distill a large number of reviews into one easy to read site. The site has also more recently expanded to include video game reviews as an addition to its primary focus on movies.But what if you want to read reviews about a new book, or CD or video game. Well, of course, you could go seek out some reputable literary, music and gaming sites that host reviews. You could again seek out advice from your local or national newspaper site. Or, you could simplify your life by visiting metacritic.com. This site takes the Rotten Tomato concept to the next level, providing a one stop shop for reviews for all sorts of entertainment media. Like Rotten Tomatoes, metacritic.com provides access to high quality reviews from major sources for movies in current release or out on DVD, but it then also provides a similarly broad range of reviews for TV shows, music, books and video games.For each item, the site provides a summary score based on reviews from major critics, but also includes a summary score based on the opinions of site users. So you get input from both professional and amateur critics. Quotes from individual reviews are listed in order from positive to negative, each with a link out to the original source if you'd like to read more. It also helps that the site has a very clean design, making the information you want both easy to find, and easy on the eyes.This is a fantastic site, and I have been using it as my primary go to site for reviews of music, books and movies for several months now. Check it out, I doubt you will be disappointed. [...]
Wed, 04 Apr 2007 18:30:00 +0000OK, I don't want to start a war here or anything, but the truth is, there are significant number of people out there who love the look of Mac OS X, but simply can't switch to a Mac just yet for a variety of reasons (need XP for work/school, can't afford a new computer right now, etc.).
Mon, 02 Apr 2007 21:27:00 +0000We're a long way from the ubiquitous video screen communication devices that are the mainstay of most science fiction shows and movies. While videoconferencing systems are improving by leaps and bounds on a yearly basis, these typically confine you to boardrooms and classrooms.But what if you want to talk face to face with someone while you're out on the road? Now you can, with a new service, called "Vision", announced today by Rogers, Canada's largest wireless service provider. Not to miss out on poking fun at the sci-fi tie-in, they even had William Shatner on hand with all of his bluster to help launch this modern communications service.In addition to providing mobile video calling services (a first for North America!), Vision includes other novel features such as mobile TV viewing, XM satellite radio and streaming clips from YouTube or MTV.If you're in Canada and are bursting to sign up for the new service, beware the inevitable downsides. First, at launch, the service is only compatible with one handset, the Samsung A706. So unless you just so happen to already own this model, you're looking at buying yourself a new mobile. It also makes use of Rogers' new upgraded network, and so it is not yet available in all areas. And if those issues don't bug you, you may still balk at the $25/month charge for mobile TV access or the $15/month for satellite radio and streaming video.Video calling plans are a comparative bargain, starting at only $5/month in addition to your regular voice plan. Or you can make pay-as-you go video calls for only 25 cents per minute. There are also the usual long-term contract plans with promotional included services.If all that intrigues you, you can see more details about Rogers' new Vision service on its official site. [...]
Sun, 01 Apr 2007 01:38:00 +0000(image) Seeing as tomorrow is April 1st, I thought it would be fitting to share some great April Fools pranks from around the web to play on your friends, family and coworkers (although you may end up being a day late if you want to prank people at work tomorrow).
Fri, 30 Mar 2007 14:19:00 +0000
I came across this screencast that shows step-by-step how to make a small adjustment to your browser configuration to boost your page load speeds.
I'm a born skeptic, but I tried the Firefox version and it really seems to be working. Plus, it's the easiest 30-second tweak you can do. Give it a shot and see what it does for you.
Wed, 28 Mar 2007 03:45:00 +0000I wanted to share with all of you, a relatively new way to discover and watch some great video on the web. StumbleVideo is a relatively new interface put out by the folks at StumbleUpon.Many (if not all) of you have heard about StumbleUpon. For those few that haven't, StumbleUpon is a social bookmarking service with a twist. Rather than having you visit a centralized site filled with some sort of ranking system, StumbleUpon utilizes a toolbar to transport you randomly to sites fitting into categories you specify that have been suggested by other stumblers. Considering the size of the web, this may be your only way of ever seeing a certain page. If you happen to be on a page that you think is great and hit the thumbs up button for "I like it!" and no one has suggested this page before, you have made a discovery! A pop up window allows you to submit a mini-review of the site complete with some tags. Now other stumblers will have you to thank when they arrive at that site. I have to say, it's pretty cool.While StumbleUpon is a great system, the landing pages for each stumbler (where you can see what they have "stumbled" recently) are plain, if not downright ugly. True, it gives you a chance to find people who like similar stuff, and so target somewhat the sites you visit. But look at what you have to deal with ... here's my stumble site. It's a somewhat disappointing interface.In contrast, StumbleVideo is gorgeous ... and ingenious in its simplicity too. Apple's next version of OSX, "Leopard" is rumored to make greater use of a sleek white on black color scheme. You can see examples of this in the site and interface for the iPhone. It seems that Stumble has taken a page from Apple's book for its StumbleVideo interface.The background is black, while the well laid out controls are in white, muted shades of gray and light accent colors. The center of the screen is occupied by the video frame, in which flash videos from a variety of sources (YouTube, Google Video and others) can be displayed. Control drawers slide out from this central panel when needed. You can specify categories of videos to view, see your friends' favorite videos or search for something specific in the "Channels" drawer. You can see who else liked a video by clicking on the "Network" button. There is also a very cool "Share" feature. Simply hit the "Share" button, and out pops a drawer. On your first visit it will ask you for your Gmail account information, and automatically import your contacts. From then on, if you hit Share, you instantly get a full list of your contacts, and a field to input a short message when you send the video link. It's really very clever.All of these controls fade almost to black when you are watching a video and the mouse is inactive. The controls come back to life with any mouse movement. This allows you to view the video in a much more pleasant viewing environment than on the gleaming white sites of YouTube or Google Video. You can even choose to watch the video in fullscreen mode (although not all videos have the resolution needed to make this look good).There is only one downside that I could see. As a blogger who enjoys sharing the odd video on this site, I have often used the "embed" link information, or "Post this video" functions at YouTube to port the video over. Unfortunately there is no such function within StumbleVideo. In order to pull in a video I've seen, I have no choice but to go to the original source site for the link. If StumbleVideo added this function to its next revision, I would have to say that this represents the perfect place to discover new video on the internet.If you ha[...]
Tue, 27 Mar 2007 14:16:00 +0000An interesting phenomenon occurred yesterday. My little site here got a HUGE boost in site traffic. While this was a great thing (who would complain about that??) ... there were several things about it that were just plain odd.First, the magnitude of the increase was crazy. I received 10 times my previous average number of visitors and page views in a day. Check out the picture below:My humble little site is just starting to build traffic, and normally gets about 25 unique visitors a day ... but yesterday I had 252 up to the time I took this screenshot (it actually hit 260 by midnight). The page visits had a similar increase.The second odd thing, is that not only were all of these visitors new, but the overwhelming majority came "directly" ... no incoming link at all. I know I had received a fair amount of traffic from Derrich.com as a result of the Blogger Tournament, but those visits were recognizeable from their inbound links. I'm not sure where all these people suddenly got the desire to come visit my site. No clue at all.The third odd thing, was that about 25 people (my normal number of visitors!) reached this site after performing Google (or Yahoo) searches for this site's name, with variations including:themanofsilverthemanofsilver blogthemanofsilver blogspotthe man of silver blogetc.Normally I get a few visitors from search engines a day, usually looking for "craigslist addict" or "vista flop", which gets them to two of my previous posts:Is Vista officially a flop?Are you a Craigslist addict?So ... for some odd reason, sometime around 8:30am EST yesterday, the word got spread somehow, by someone to come check out this blog pronto. The traffic surged, and didn't peter out until the evening. Now I'm back to a more regular traffic pattern.If anybody has any explanation for this phenomenon, I'd love to hear it. After all ... if I knew how this all started, I could try and do it again!Edit: A keen reader (thanks Brent) has posted a comment that provides a very likely explanation for what this site experienced yesterday. It seems that Gizmodo (the hugely popular tech blog) posted about the Blogger Tournament (since they were participating) including a pic of the brackets. It seems a fair number of people were curious enough to check out the other blogs on the pic.Thanks again for the info ... and thanks to Gizmodo for the unintentional link love! ;) [...]
Tue, 27 Mar 2007 11:45:00 +0000Just a quick post to let people know that unfortunately I lost in the second round of Derrich.com's Blogger Tournament. I'm ok with that since I lost to Samanathon.com a worthy opponent and a great blog. Congrats Saman! Feel free to follow the link to the tournament page and vote for Samanathon in the next round of competition.
Tue, 27 Mar 2007 01:59:00 +0000
This is a fun throwback video of Steve Jobs introducing the Macintosh computer. There's no slick Keynote presentation ... the Mac doesn't rise out of the floor on a special platform ... even Steve's trademark jeans and black mock turtleneck are missing ... but Steve can still stir up a crowd!
Sun, 25 Mar 2007 21:40:00 +0000OK ... after slowly getting my feet wet in the blogging world for the past couple of months, I'm considering taking this blog to the next level over the next few months. What that would mean is a move to my own domain, and a shiny new WordPress-powered site. I've heard from my readers (mostly from Saman) that this is the way to go, and it sure seems that way from my visits to top-notch blogs around the web.The problem is, as a relative newcomer, the first and most important step is a difficult one to make. What hosting service to I go with?? (And related to this, should I choose a service that includes a domain registration, or just get my own on GoDaddy.com or a similar site?).I really would appreciate the input from all experienced (and new) bloggers out there based on what you have used/liked/hated. So, I have set up a poll to help gather this information.Some criteria I'm looking for:Simple and easy-to-use: I'm hoping for some free tools and valuable support that will make the transition to an independent blog and easy one. I want this to be less stressful than moving house!Good value: There is a huge range in price out there. I need a fairly basic level of service, but with a little room for expansion if needed, but I may as well get the best bang for my buck.Reputable and established: I want a company that's been around for a while, and will likely continue to be in business as long as I'm hosting a site with them.With that in mind, please vote using the poll here.Get all of your blogger buddies to swing by and give me their input too! The more input the better. Also, feel free to leave any other tips, advice, links, etc. in the comments.Thanks in advance to everyone! [...]
Sun, 25 Mar 2007 16:39:00 +0000
The following video was put together by people involved in the movement to enshrine "Net Neutrality" as law in the United States. This principle states that all internet traffic, regardless of its message, or producer, should travel at the same speed and without hindrance through the pipelines of the internet. There is growing concern that the phone and cable companies want to change this by creating a "fast lane" for only those customers and corporations who pay them a premium. Although this movement is very much based in the United States, the consequences of what happens will have a lasting impact on the internet we all experience everywhere else in the world.
If you want to learn more about the issue (or at least one side of the issue) visit www.savetheinternet.com. The video is a bit long, but it makes for some interesting viewing, complete with an interview with the inventor of the World Wide Web (and no ... that isn't Al Gore).
Sun, 25 Mar 2007 14:45:00 +0000Thanks to everyone who came out and voted for me on Derrich.com's Blogger Tournament. I beat Lifehacker in the first round!
Sat, 24 Mar 2007 20:10:00 +0000(image)
Thu, 22 Mar 2007 15:51:00 +0000Here's a list of a few great, recent posts from around the web that help you get more from the internet.
Wed, 21 Mar 2007 01:05:00 +0000Recently the web has been overrun with hype, rumor and chatter about Google entering the cellphone biz in partnership with an established manufacturer with a possible "iPhone-killer". Possible partners including Samsung, HTC, Orange (as a provider) and others. Then, just last week, Engadget (one of my favorite blogs) announced "Google exec confirms phone in the labs". Not to give the wrong impression, the post includes the fact that a mobile is just one of the many R&D projects underway at Google, and that it was earmarked more towards developing countries.This set off another flurry of excitement across the web as many people fantasized about getting their hands on the "gPhone", while mentally kicking the (still unreleased) iPhone to the curb. Please people ... calm down!A Google phone is far from market-ready (it is firmly in the land of vaporware). Also, even if one is in the works, it may not satisfy the hyped up expectations of the masses. Perhaps this may represent a simple good deed on the part of Google - to create a cheap and cheerful, internet-ready entry-level phone to be sold for peanuts in developing countries. Add this to pushing for free universal wireless internet, as Google using its size for good. If that's the case ... great! (although I realize their will be some disappointed people out there).The fact remains though, that a Google-branded multipurpose phone (like an iPhone or whatever smartphone you'd like to choose) is a waste of Google's time ... and ours.Google's primary business modelGoogle makes money by selling advertising, which it then shows to you in various sites across the internet. AdSense ads appear next to your email in Gmail, on your Google search results, and of course on many many of your favorite blogs and web sites. Businesses pay to show up as suggested choices when you search in Google Maps.When Google enters a new market, for example by launching Google Talk chat directly in your Gmail account, they do so to show you more ads. The longer you spend with Google, the more ads you will see, and maybe click on.Google's already on your mobileGoogle has already gone mobile to share its search, mail and news capabilities (and ads of course) with you wherever you are. You can even get Google SMS service without opening your phone's browser.Google has actively partnered with other manufacturers and wireless providers to integrate their services with their released and upcoming products (for example). Even iPhone has tight integration with Google Maps.Little to gainRight now Google is essentially a software company. Their software lives online for anyone to use regardless of hardware platform. They already benefit from mobile users of their services, no matter what phone they choose to use it on. They get extra earnings out of partnering with other companies (like Apple) to more closely integrate Google services on their handsets. They get all of this money, without spending a dime on developing hardware.They get to focus exclusively on developing their online software and services (on which they spend plenty) and let the other guys work out the hardware. They can do that, because they know they will make money of that hardware, no matter what it looks like, or what else it can do. You don't see them making laptops now do you?If they set out to create a mobile phone, even in partnership with an electronics company, they would[...]