Tried My-MSN

I just tried My-MSN today. It rocks!!! (Gana, please don't tell me I am easily excited by anything.)

Some features that I liked in My-MSN were:
* The look and feel: It is really great. The module colors and the background color are way better than that in My-Yahoo.
* The ability to move modules dynamically: This feature is the best. You can just drag a module from its old position to the new desired position and you are done. (I didn't know this could be done in a browser!)
* A quick way to add a page or module. It is easier to add a page in My-MSN than in My-Yahoo.
* Ability to refresh a particular module on the fly.
* The columns resize themselves and are not as in My-Yahoo.

To sum up, I should say they have made optimal use of their own browser. I don't think most of these features work in Mozilla.

What I didn't like:
* The registration process: Although it was just 1 step, it was tough initially to figure out the concept of .NET passport etc.
* The camouflage image that appears cannot be decoded by an automated program nor by human beings!
* We can just add 5 pages as against 6 in My-Yahoo.
* This one has come from Microsoft. 🙁

How My-Yahoo is better:
* My-Yahoo can be used to integrate the scores of other utilities that Yahoo provides. Ex: Bookmarks, personalized search feeds (you can publish RSS feeds of your searched results!), mail, address book, etc.

Any other site that offers personalized pages? Please let me know…

And now Personalised search from Yahoo!

Yahoo has come up with yet another idea – Personalized search. (I think it was already there, but this is really cool.)

My Yahoo search lets us search for pages, save them, save keywords and also add notes and mail the searched pages.

What's more, you can also store these pages under different categories and retrieve it at a later time.

Have you ever faced a problem where you saw a particular page and then forgot what “keywords” got you there? Or did you face a problem when you saw a page someday and couldn't retrieve it later because that page appeared in a search listing and you don't know which keywords listed that page?

My Yahoo search is the answer.

Of course I am not advertising anything but here's My Yahoo! Search for you.

As an aside Google also has a personalized search (Yet another Beta from Google! Hey that Beta label looks cool huh! Don't remove it…) at Google Personalized Search. But it is truly not personalized in the sense that the results are dependent on a profile and the profile has to be selected every time(at least if you are using a public computer) you need a personalized search result.

So will Personalized Search be yet another revolution? You bet…

Information is cheap

And it is here finally. Yahoo was the last one to take the plunge. Just write “Desktop search” in Google and have a look. You will be surprised. Google, Yahoo, MSN, AskJeeves all have entered this business. Information is now available at your fingertips. It couldn't have been easier than this.

With the broadband revolution starting in the country you can't expect information to be cheaper. I remember Gana downloading a program from the net because he was too lazy to search for the program in his collection of CD's!

Now that you have enough information at your disposal what is the next step you would take? What will you do with all that information?

I remember that when we were in 3rd sem an old professor who was the lead role in Ontoweb came to our college and introduced us to XML and ontologies. (I was probably the only person who could understand atleast 20% of what he said :)) The founders of Google are his drop-outs. He made an interesting remark – “Google sucks, because it can't distinguish between words that have the same meaning. All it does is, give listings. We have designed a system, which can give us precise answer to questions rather than give a listing of web-sites.”

It shows that this is just the beginning. The desktop search, the Google Sets, and many other related features are all attempts to help us manage the vast amount of information. The desktop search apparently says, “Don't worry about where your information is. Don't spend time organizing it. Let it be where it is. After-all, all that you require is to give you the information that you need when you need it. And that we do well!”

So ultimately this will probably lead to intelligent personal agents that can surf the web and get you precise (digested?) information (crisp and up-to-date) when you need it.

(People who have already criticized me about talking about Information Overload, please don't bother to do it again. I will be having a series of entries in future on this topic.)

LiveJournal was down

Although LJ was down on Jan 15th, my My-Yahoo Feed reader was able to show all my LJ friends' blogs without any problems. I click on some interesting article and it doesn't work because LJ is down. How was My-Yahoo able to show feeds when the LJ server itself was down? Any idea? Does it cache the results? If so how often does it refresh the cache. And more importantly, how many results does it cache. For example, my My-Yahoo itself has more than 70 feeds. Does it cache all that?! Someone from Yahoo please let us know. 🙂

Lab exams went well

My lab exams went well. For Internet Programming it was our beloved HOD. He as usual was least interested in our project.

The Networking Lab was too good. I can't forget it for some time.

Our project was a web-grabber and it was working quite well. But on the lab exam day, we saw that the net was not configured and so we had some problems initially. Thanks to IndraKumar, all was well in about 15 minutes. We then grabbed the entire SJCE website in less than 15 minutes!

When the internal examiner came smiling and asked us about our project, we said it was a grabber. He hadn't heard about a grabber!

So we started showing him the grabbed JC website. He couldn't believe it. He asked us to show the grabbing process in front of him. We said, “Sir, we haven't yet started the demo. Please wait. We shall explain everything first and then give a formal demo”.

The demo went on for about 45 minutes. We kept explaining one feature after another. We didn't allow him to ask questions (we answered everything quite well, before he could question).

He was quite satisfied.

And now let me concentrate on our theory exams.

Blog spamming?!

Recently saw some anonymous comments in many of my friend's blogs. (I don't know if it is there in some entry of mine. I didn't care to check.)

Well, this made me check on the web about blog spamming. And guess what I found out? A novel idea to advertise your product. Just write a small script, which just keeps commenting others' blogs and thus helps raise the ranking in sites like Google. Check this out.

Any new invention has its inherent problems. Can't help it…

Blogging – the new revolution?!

I had to add something, after all I had to tell people that I am alive!

Good to know people are joining this new community.

It reminds me of the day when Bharat introduced me to blogging. The first question I asked him was “Are people jobless?”. Now I realize how useful it is.

And then the question why people blog? I have been thinking about it for quite sometime and found 2 pretty good reasons for it:

* To share experiences.
* To share knowledge. (Ever heard of longhornblogs?)

Well, that seems to be pretty good reasons. So keep blogging. (But isn't it bad to know that the word blog is still not in the English dictionary?)

To wind up here's an article on blogs, which talks about what blogging is all about. Copy-cat M$ has also jumped into this field.

What's more? Our CGI project this time is on blogging. Can someone suggest me a good name for it?

Hey this RSS thing is cool man!!!

I am impressed.

Hadn't expected this thing to be there.

I have been using My Yahoo for about a year now. But I hadn't known that this RSS thing can help me do the things that I had longed craved for.

I am sure people who know RSS and its potential have by now, realized what I am talking about. But for the rest, read on…

RSS is an acronym for “Really Simple Syndication”. It is a format that is used agreed upon by the organizations and is used for providing services and news to the users via their own personalized portals.

What's more. You can see your friends' updated journals through your personalized page as soon as they update it. You can read news from around the world within 15 mins! You can see the search results for a frequently searched word as soon as it is updated.

And ya that's not the end of it.

While I am busy finding out what else can be done using RSS, I guess it is time you people also explore the capabilities of this wonderful technology.

Happy RSSing