Technology

uber-input-box

Is Google striving to become the uber-input-box? If you type in an address, the corresponding street map appears. Type in a company stock name, and it will fetch you the stock quotes. And then there's phone book and spell check; and the latest calculator facility.

I guess it's not just about document search anymore - it's about information. Whatever kind of information that may be. They want everyone on the internet to have that Google window open on their desktop, all the time. If you want to know something, type it in. Goo

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weekly web wonder

HomestarGreetings, earthlings, and welcome to the brand new, weekly web wonder entry! This week's website is HomestarRunner.com, one of the most ultracool Flash websites I've seen in my entire browsing life. This CartoonNetwork-esque website documents the life of Homestar Runner, one of the most lovable comic characters around. There's also a bunch of other people,StrongBad including the uber-villain StrongBad and his brothers StrongMad and StrongSad.

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this is the internet

By way of a conversation I was just having with someone, I realized how easy it is to find out all about a person. It's a simple step-wise deduction process by which you can get that person's complete personal details.

I also realized how scary it is for an average user to find out that the complete stranger you just met on the Internet knows so much about you.

Some years ago, you'd need to hire a detective to do this sort of stuff. But in this age of information technology, all you need is some logical deduction skills, and an Internet connection.

Let me give you a very very basic example of this. When you sign up for email, you enter a desired username, along with lots of private, priviledged information like date of birth, address, etc. So when the username is taken, the email provider conveniently suggests alternatives like username_74 or username_Delhi. A crime in the name of usability, in my view. The user quickly chooses one of these IDs without much thought, but from now on, every person that he writes to knows that Mr. User is 29 years old, or he is from Delhi.

outlook for blogs

NewzCrawler is becoming my weapon of choice to handle the evergrowing list of weblogs I read. The aggregator helps me organize my blogs, and a simple F5 polls all the RSS feeds from the blogs and gets me all the new posts.

However, life would be a lot easier if some of my favourite blogs had some syndication mechanism in place. So people, please go to Mark Gardner's website, where you

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happenin!

I just realized I've become such a happening person! Here's some of the things I haven't told the world about, so here goes:

idya rocks IP Univ.: We took our software to InfoeXpression 2003 at Indraprastha University, and won 1st prize! IP Univ labs have 100kbps internet... wow.

5th Sem results out:I'm second in class, 7th in the whole university! Thank you God!

Writer, Hindustan Times: Make sure you read the GenNow page on Saturdays in HT - the Weekly Web Wonder column is where I get to scrawl my sentences.

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aloha, earth people

Greetings to all those people coming to my humble space on the Internet from the Hindustan Times article. I hope you find this place interesting, and come back here often. Some parts of the site are still incomplete, but you can have a look at TimepassTown if you want to read some cool stuff.

Feels nice to be featured in a National Daily - I've had my brushes with the media in the past, but to wake up in the morning and see my name on Page 16 of the day's newspaper...

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good bad ugly

Oh man, I'm tired... Life is just so hectic these days. Let's try categorizing them:

Good: The TV's back. 2 days after it going kaput, Dad opened it up on the dining table, used the vacuum cleaner to suck out all the dirt, and replaced the fuse wire that had blown. Some of the advantages in life when your father is a news-and-cricket-hungry electronics engineer.

My birthday was a really cool day. My cousin sister called up all the way from Salt Lake City in the US - it was so cool to talk international! Then many other calls came in, IM messages popped up all over my computer screen. Woke up in the morning with a very happy mood (this doesn't happen too often), and Mom gives me a really sweet geeky birthday card. I come back after brushing my teeth, and there's a huge chocolate cake on my table! Mom had kept it in the fridge, and I hadn't noticed! Well, I got dressed and stuff, and blew out 20 candles. It was almost like blowing out an entire bush fire in one breath. Man, I feel old. Then I had cake and Payesh for breakfast. In the evening, went to Ashish's place, and from there we went to a school reunion / Valentine's / general party. We reached "fashionably late" (that's supposedly what people call 10:30 in the night). It was fun meeting all my school friends again.

oh dang didly doo!

Google buys Pyra! This is major. Ev, Jason and the gang rollerblading in the GooglePlex... hmm.

Everyone seems to be wondering why this happened - as in, what use is a content hosting service to a search company?
A lot of people are saying that there's going to be a "Blogs" tab now, beside the News and other tabs. Some people are also wondering if Blogspot sites will get a better pagerank.

But why buy Pyra? Why not just get 20 people to build Blogger in a month? Here's what I think: It's all about the data™. In Page and Brin's paper - The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine - the base assumption was that the WWW is a huge interlinked connection of information. And you know what's incredibly funny? The Blogosphere is just that - a small scale WWW.

of bots and men

Here's a list of the last 4 visitors at arnab.org, according to my statistics program:

1. The Wossrom Bot, a program that determines how 'friendly' a blog is towards different operating systems.
2. The EvilBot, a program that updates the "Index Of Evil" to keep track of who's the baddest bad boy of them all. Bin Laden's still #1, by the way.
3. Some guy using Lynx 2.81, the a good text-mode browser that people use when they're secretly (mis)using Internet in the college library. Reading this blog in the college library? I'm flattered.

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time passed

Just back from the TpT meetup - kMac, aNax, Pep, and Megs were there. I met Megs and kMac for the first time - it's a unique thing to communicate with a person first via a website, and read their articles / poetry, and then meet them in person. Except for Anuj not showing up, it was a pretty nice thing overall.

I'm pretty tired right now, maybe I'll update this space later with more info about the meetup.

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