Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Google Code Soars While Google News Falters

Working on my end-of-term presentation at work is really sucking a lot of time away from my real work. I guess the effort is worth it though since we'll be speaking in front of some very high-profile people. Several thousands of open source projects have now found their home at Google Code, which many are calling a competitor to SourceForge though it's really a much toned down code repository. Sourceforge provides many features more adept to hosting large-scale projects whereas Google Code cuts away much of the excess to provide a more affable environment for hobbyist projects, and so I think that both can definitely co-exist. I don't know how many projects have moved to Google Code as opposed to projects people have had and now decided to put online since Sourceforge can be quite intimidating for beginners. Meanwhile, Google News is losing steam as competing developers come up with some interesting alternatives. Inform is one such service, allowing customers to scan the web for news and blog posts to be offered as related links on an article. I'll admit that I don't think it's all that great of a news aggregator myself and it definitely left lots of room for improvement (even after beta). If anything though, I believe that Google definitely helped clear the way for news aggregators, and they should be commended for that at least.

Another neat little code repository is called Programming is Hard and is really just a collection of useful code snippets. They range from neat tricks to syntactical nuances many users may not know about. It's small right now, but I can see it growing fast. Apple's WWDC is just under a week away, and MacRumors has taken it upon themselves to put together the most prominent speculation regarding what will actually be revealed, most notably a Merom upgrade and a Leopard preview. I'm still guessing for iTunes upgrades and quite possibly even a new iPod (though that's slightly unlikely for this particular event, the more I think about it). Speaking of iTunes, CNet put together a list of some really great add-ons for iTunes, some of which are must-haves. The best ones allow you to download from your iPod and schedule recordings from radio stations, although many of them require a Mac. Meebo, a service I love when I need to use IM on-the-go, has unveiled a service called MeeboMe that allows you to chat with your site visitors. I actually put it on the right side here just as a trial to see if it's useful for blogs. If you face the problem at work of hiding some of the sites you may visit, you should check out this guy's clever little proxy. It basically puts sites in Word documents so that it looks like you're reading documents for work rather than browsing the web. Now that's creative. Lastly, Acer has decided to release an HD-DVD capable 20 inch laptop at a hefty $2,800. I don't see why anyone other than movie fanatics would actually run out and buy one of these though.

Click to enlarge

Great news from the Harry Potter front: the next installment (Order of the Phoenix) will feature Helena Bonham Carter as one of the main antagonists, and I think that she'll be great. I don't think I've seen her in a role where she wasn't awesome. Jet Li and Jackie Chan have announced that they'll be doing an action movie together, but they're just waiting on approval of the script. It sounds like it'll be a very Hollywood movie (read: watered down and wasteful of its talent), and what's funnier is that Jet Li said that Fearless would be his last martial arts flick. I knew he wouldn't stick to that! All I have for you now is multimedia. The first thing is a trailer for Employee of the Month, which looks alright, but I have definite doubts about how funny it'll actually be. I didn't feel like any part of the trailer would make me laugh in the context of the movie. As a polar opposite, we have the trailer for Grudge 2, which has many pretty ladies in it I figured my male readers would like to see. My Internet sucks too much to view that one though. If you're a big Bond fan, you'll probably want to check out the newly released Casino Royale video podcast, but I'm just really not interested in the production on this movie. Lastly, Yahoo Movies put up the first 6 minutes of The Illusionist but, once again, I can't watch it from my "suite".

Now for the Wednesday Mind Hump:

My favorite female musician is __________.
Norah Jones, definitely. Her music is just so soothing and beautiful.
My favorite guitarist is ____________.
I'd have to say John Frusciante. I just always felt like he brought the most musical energy to the Red Hot Chili Peppers. I'm also partial to Tom Morello.
My musical guilty pleasure is ___________.
Mariah Carey. Sorry, but I really do love her old stuff. I grew up on that music!
My favorite Beatle is __________.
Probably John Lennon, but it's not like I was ever a hardcore Beatles fan or anything.

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