Friday, September 30, 2005 

Web 2.0

In the past few years there has been a huge trend towards Web 2.0. Many people are unaware of these shift, because they don't know the difference between the original web, Web 1.0, and the new web Web 2.0. At the same time they have probably been using Web 2.0 on a regular basis. If I were to sum up the differences between 1.0 and 2.0 it would come down to one word "dynamic." Web 1.0 pages were all static pages. A user of Web 1.0 would go to a website read a page, click a couple of links and that's all there was to it. The pages were all generated before hand and the reader simple accessed them. Web 2.0 focuses on dynamic webpages that allows the users of the page to have some control over them. An example of a dynamic webpage is this blog. Every time you come to this blog, or any blog, the page us generated right then and there. The only html that exists before hand is an html template, the actually content (ie the posts) are stored in a database some where. When a user comes to this site some software takes the template and the entries and automatically generates an html document "on the fly." Pretty nifty huh? The reason Web 2.0 has increased a great amount in the past year or two is because of the increased popularity in scripting languages, such as php and javascript, as well as a wealth of information available for the newcomers in the field. Another very important reason Web 2.0 has increased in popularity is also due to a shift in the usage of the computer. People no longer use a computer to simple do research while in their office or lab. Many people view the web as a way to connect and stay connected to, well, everything. Why would I want to store my calendar on my computer? I want to have access to it no matter where I am, which is made possible with Web 2.0 (I hear Google is coming out with a calendar soon). I can also always have my e-mail because of sites such as gmail. A few examples of Web 2.0 sites are:

  1. Flickr - post images, add tags to them and allow other people to comment on them
  2. - post links, increase the links popularity, post comments on each link
  3. wikipedia - create encyclopedia entries, users have the ability to edit any page at any time
This is a very small list of Web 2.0 sites out there, in the comment section post links to your favorite Web 2.0 sites. =) On a side note it was very hard to find a picture for this post. In the end I gave up and just searched for something with my favorite color, blue. =p

Thursday, September 29, 2005 

Ipod Nano

In case you haven't heard a couple of weeks ago Apple released a new Ipod called the Ipod Nano. I was lucky enough to play with one for a bit at the apple store and all I can say is ...WOW. It is extremely small and light, you barely even know you are holding it. Plus the color screen is crisp and sharp. An interesting thing to note about the nano is that it replaced the ipod mini. This may not sound that interesting except when you realize that the ipod mini was the most popular selling ipod in the world! Apple was, and is, taking a huge chance in replacing it with another product. Although, I must say the nano is truly amazing. Their are two main differences between the mini and the nano. First off the nano has a color screen, but the most important difference is the memory type. The mini had a small hard drive while the nano contains flash memory, which is much smaller and faster. I actually ordered a nano a couple of weeks ago, but just yesterday I cancelled my order. Sure the nano is getting praise from every review you read but if you read the user reports there have been a lot of complaints about the nano getting easily scratched and more importantly the screen breaking very easily. Apple released a statement a few days ago saying that less than 1% of the screens were faulty and that everything else is fine. Personally I'm going to wait it out a few months and see what happens before I finally decide to purchase one. If you need a cover for the nano this site has gotten a lot of praise for protecting the nano from scratches. In conclusion though, WOW, they are extremely nice and I really want one =)

Wednesday, September 28, 2005 

Portable Programs

Lately people have been yelling at me for not posting anything to this blog, I've been rather busy with a few other projects I am working on. I will do my best to keep posting to this on a more regular basis. Today's post is about flash drives and how to make them very useful. In case you don't know a flash drive is a very small piece of hardware that you can plug into your USB port and it acts just like any other memory on your computer. It has become very popular lately to store files so you always have them with you, or to easily move files between computers. If this is all you are using them for you are missing out on how useful they can really be! As I mentioned above the flash drives acts just like any other memory drive on your computer, meaning that not only can you store files on it, you can also run applications from it. Think about how useful that is! No matter where you go in the world, no matter what computer you are at you will always have your favorite applications with you and all your settings. There are actually a few limitations to this I might add, while you can install programs to the drive doing so means it will only work on your local computer. A better way is to find applications that don't need to be installed. There are tons of them out there but it will take a bit of looking. If you want the easy way out just download this zipped file, it contains many good applications I have on my own drive. Some of the applications that I find VERY useful are:

  1. Portable Firefox, a must have! Always have your bookmarks and settings where ever you go.
  2. portable Sunbird, a portable calendar program, a great way to always have your calendar with you.
  3. KeePass, stores and encrypts all of your passwords, plus it has a nifty auto enter feature. A very useful and safe program.
  4. Restoration, this program allows you to undelete files. Extremely useful to have, especially if you accidentally delete your roommates final paper freshman year ;)
  5. Autoruns, this program detects everything that runs on your computer when it starts, great if you find something is slowing your computer down and you need to delete it manually.
After that all the programs you put on are up to you. From the zipped filed linked to above, I've kept the cd/dvd burner program and I have a few network tools. I know some people who like to put a portable version of Open Office on there so that they can work on documents even if the computer doesn't have Microsoft Office. Well that's it for this post, if you have any questions drop me a line =)

Tuesday, September 06, 2005 


If you haven't heard of the website before is a social book marking website. In summary a social book marking website is a type of site where a community of users can post links and a short summary about different interesting links they find online. What makes digg so special though is that once a link is posted people are allowed to "digg" the site, which means say they like it and increase it's popularity. The more popular the stories the higher status it has on the page. I first found out about digg not from any link but from a podcast I came across, Diggnation. Diggnation is produced, and I used that term lightly ;), by revision 3. Revision 3 puts out a ton of great videos and podcasts; systm, the broken, and diggnation. Every week in diggnation the hosts, Kevin Rose and Alex Albrect, talk about the stories with the most diggs that week. If you don't know them both Kevin and Alex were on TechTV for a while and are both very funny. The show is very well put together, with both an audio and video version. If you like you can subscribe to either the video or audio in itunes, just look for diggnation it's normally one of the top 10 . Another option is just go to the website and download the files through bit torrent. They actually prefer if you use bit torrent since it saves them a ton of money for their server costs. Definitely check these guys out =)