Clutter free google, and geocities' admittance of defeat.

Clutter! Nobody likes it. What doooooo people like? When you have the option of turning it off!

Google has this little experiment going on where you can choose to turn off the “clutter” on their google.com search page [which is barely any to begin with] and make it bare-bones minimalist. It’s actually surprising how little you notice the “clutter” until you turn it off. This experiment allows it to go away, and then reappear when you roll your mouse over the page.

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To access this, go to http://www.google.com; copy and paste this code into the address bar:
javascript:void(document.cookie="PREF=ID=abac7a90f5a3784b:LD=en:NR=10:TM=1254990196:LM=1254990236:S=uB6F4jDnMP_DuxtT;path=/; domain=.google.com");

Hit return, refresh the page, and VOILA! The image below doesn’t do it justice, I realized, because it’s ALL white except for the screen shot I took. None of the text below the search buttons exists until you scroll your mouse.

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There is a way to turn this off; go to Options –> Privacy –> Remove individual cookies…  find Google.com and remove the cookie named PREF.

In other news… GEOCITIES IS FINALLY SHUTTING DOWN!
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I don’t know how many of you remember Geocities because it’s pretty old, BUT I DO!!! That was back in the “alta vista” and “hotbot” days. Geocities offered free homepages… the first of many websites that did that. Yahoo CEO has decided to takeYahoo.com in a new direction, a direction that will (hopefully) push them along the way to being one of the primary search engine/life management websites. sans geocities. Do I smell a company attempting to take down the big bad google. I think so.

Good luck to them. I personally had yahoo for a long time before google/gmail, and I love gmail alot more. They are constantly innovating. Who knows though, maybe yahoo has been holding out something good. Sometimes we save the best for last…we shall see.

BYE!

Google Tsunami…Wait, what? I mean Google Wave.

… I start this off with “google tsunami” because as I was looking for wave information, I came across this.. and I quote:

Google Wave is just a precursor to the tsunamis that are going to hit this planet soon (just like the new Pepsi logo that looks like a giant wave). There are various other symbols out there right now, but these are two of the most prominent.

… well if that isn’t in someway prophetic (read: paranoid) as well as slightly interesting. Anyway, on THAT note…

I’ve been thoroughly stalking google wave information, because as we all know (or maybe just me, because I heart google immensely) it should be officially released September 30th for a select 100,000 who will get invites. That is still a month and a half of changes and provisions that will be done to bring us this amazing product. Various websites have been saying that this could make or break google… and I agree. This could literally change email as we know it… which may not be that good because my mom just got used to using gmail and this may totally throw her off her game ;) (HI MOM!)

I did an article on this previously, so just to refresh your (hopefully) eager minds, let me do a recap of what google wave will entail.

  • Real time typing/editing (which will make a great online collaboration tool)
  • You can embed waves in various websites, it’s not just contained to the interface
  • Application abilities… developers can make wave applications and extensions. The possibilities are endless for them.
  • Completely open source.. meaning, it could potentially be taken to a level of insanity that we can only fathom.
  • Auto-correction. seems kind of like a “duh” thing right? Well it goes so far as to differentiate between words, such as “seen” and “scene”. It also auto-translates. Yup.
  • DEATH TO ATTACHMENTS! I ALWAYS forget to attach them (I even have the google labs option where it ‘senses’ you are missing an attachment and reminds you) but this just makes everything drag and drop so you don’t even have to use brain power to think about it. WONDERFUL!!

There are also potential BAD sides to this. One great thing about using gmail currently is that you KNOW everything is private, unless you willingly share something on google documents for others to collaborate on. I have a feeling that with google wave, the lines between public and private will be extremely blurry (drunk status) and you might ACCCCCCCCCIDENTALLY leave something up that you probably assumed/wished would stay private. Then people jump in and edit/comment, and the first thought that runs across your mind is “OH CRAP! OFFLINE! OFFLINE! ABORT MISSION. REPEAT: ABORT MISSION!”. All you extreme emailers with your wacky conversations better look out… big brother may accidentally be watching this time around.

If you want to sign up to receive alerts on google wave, please visit this page

FriendFeed & '4urface'

I just heard a little birdie talking about facebook acquiring friendfeed… and it’s true! I actually had no clue what friendfeed was until I started reading the article. Pretty much it combines facebook, twitter and google etc all together into one feed. There’s actually 58 services (I think, don’t quote me on that) that you can import from. People can not only converse under things that you post, but you can have discussions as well as private groups, so that it acts as kind of a mail-list. You can keep in touch with your relatives this way (if you don’t want them to peek into your facebook accounts!) as well as have newsfeed like good old twitter. I just signed up for it, my friendfeed is http://friendfeed.com/esvienne.

I’m not sure if I’m going to keep it- I just signed up to get a feel for it so that I could write about it. I like how it’s laid out, however, it’s not very organized. It’s just.. well.. a feed. I don’t really like to have too many social networking sites to begin with so I only really have three linked on there. It may not be worth it for me but we’ll see. I’m interested to see what direction facebook takes this. Maybe it’ll get rid of their “everyone” feature on the livefeed. I HATE THAT! facebook is personal, not like twitter for the world to see. If you want that, then join twitter! geez. good job facebook.

On another note, my friend just started up a food blog and evidently he is an excellent cook, so I suggest you check out his website and even subscribe to it. It has some great unique dishes up! Do it. http://4urface.wordpress.com

Dancing boots!

I’m on to something I swear! Just humor me and read my ramble-y introduction and I SWEAR you will derive some sort of useful information from this entry. I’m on a never ending mission to be completely organized. Yet, somehow, I am remarkably scatter-brained amongst my perfectly planned out ideas. I don’t know how this happens, but it just does. I am SO on a mission to be organized, that I spend lots (and I mean LOTS) of time perusing the stationary aisle. I suppose you could refer to me as a wee bit OCD. It’s okay; I don’t mind. I’m well aware of myself.

edit: I DID, by the way, find that planner I was searching so desperately for. It was glorious.

So back to my OCD…For one thing, I am a google maniac. Well, almost. I must admit that I have somewhat strayed from my google-y ways,  and gave in to my unfaithful and self destructive desires by using Windows Live as well. I’M SORRY! I realize that cheating is a very serious situation that should not be taken lightly, but there’s just something about that crisp scaled down main page, with its large beautiful picture…but that’s besides the point. I really hate hotmail and I NEVER use it. I like my Gmail, thank you very much. My school has it’s own Live.com address so I have my Knight’s email through there too. Don’t look at me that way. But back to my original point- I LOVE GOOGLE! More specifically, iGoogle. I use everything in there. I have Gmail, Google Docs (which is a LIFESAVER by the way!! I can take things out of my email and store them on google docs, never to be lost again!), that little google chat thing (sometimes, if I see somebody on), the labels, Googlemaps, etc. I HAVE NOW DISCOVERED SOMETHING ELSE WONDERFUL that will make my website organization easier. GOOGLE NOTEBOOK! The reason I like it so much is because I’m always finding awesome things online that I either 1) want to employ in my website somehow or 2) write about.

If you don’t know me very well, then you probably don’t know that I have an awful short-term memory. I can remember things from probably 18 years ago… (no joke! I remember things from when I was 6) but I can literally forget something I was either about to do, or plan on doing in the matter of .05 seconds. I know this shows through in my writing, but I suppose that’s what keeps it personable. Nobody likes boring hum-drum writing… right? So, Google Notebook comes in handy because you can literally clip out what you want to remember from any website, and it stores it, in all its glory, for you to either publish onto a quick html google page, or export. You can grab either text, images, media.. whatever you want. You can also use it to collaborate with other people (which is something google docs does too!) so you can share something you plan on working on. If you want to. If not, you can just horde it to yourself. That’s what I do… it’s pretty clear that I’m not a team player. Haha. Google Notebook is also pretty handy-dandy when you’re writing essays or working on a project. You can save the select information that you’re citing, rather than just bookmark a whole page and forget what exactly it was you wanted in the first place. So if you are looking for a new way to stay organized, when dealing with college stuff, please sign up for a gmail account and play with all the neat new things they are coming up with in Google Labs. Also, as a side note, I’m starting to pick out my color scheme that I plan on using when I FINALLY get around to working on my new website layout. I know I’ve been saying for about a year now that I would be putting up my own design, but we all know I am a writer, not a designer, so it’s prooooobably going to take me a good amount of time. Just wanted to say that! Bye for now. I shall leave you with this lovely piece of work: