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Wikipedia for Dunces – Simple WikiPedia

February 22nd, 2007 · No Comments

I came across simple.wikipedia.org. Just like en.wikipedia.org and de.wikipedia.org, the “simple” wikipedia aims to explain things in a “simple” language. But saying you want to explain something using simple English doesn’t create a new language called “simple”, folks!

Also, maybe due to it’s immaturity, you can now find gems like, “Electricity is the flow of positive electricity in a metal.” D’oh. That is real simple. If I don’t know what electricity means, I sure can understand that electricity is the flow of positive electricity.

There is a point after which simplifying science degenerates into into insulting the reader’s intelligence. Some people have way too much time on their hands.

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Wimbledon Equalizes Pay for Sexes

February 22nd, 2007 · No Comments

SI.com – Tennis – Wimbledon agrees to equal prize money – Thursday February 22, 2007 12:20PM

Wimbledon cited a combination of commercial, political and sporting factors for the decision


When I was 10 and me and my dad were watching the Winbledon on TV, I asked him – “So why do the women get a plate, and the men get a huge cup?

Now that the difference in prize-money is gone, it is about time they started giving the women cups for trophies. Giving the men plates would work too. :)

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Fran Allen is the first woman to win the Turing Award

February 21st, 2007 · No Comments

Fran Allen wins the Turing award, becoming the first ever woman to win the prestigious ACM award worth $100,000. Frances Allen, (not to be confused with the first woman of New England birth to become a nun ;) ) was a computer scientist at IBM, an IBM Fellow, who worked on compilers, program optimization work and modern methods for high-speed computing.

Frances Allen

I was surprised to learn she was the first woman ever to win the award, but it shouldn’t have been surprising. There is a lot of work to be done to promote women in technology and computer science. The sexist, stereotyped “geek” should give way, it is high time.

Congratulations, Fran, and I hope you blaze the trail for many more female Turing award winners.

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Get a Free Organizing Calendar, 2007 Edition

February 19th, 2007 · No Comments

I love the D*I*Y Planner 2.5 Letter Calendar Pack, 2007 Edition. It is available as a pdf file you can download and print. Why pay $10 or more for a calendar when you can print your own? Just the other day I was searching for free calendars and really couldn’t find anything, since the google results were saturated with seemingly free calendars that would let me down when I went to the website – they were all trying to sell me something. This DIY calendar pack is nice – only thing is that a month’s calendar is spread over two facing pages – wish it was on one page, in landscape layout. The website also has other files, especially for those who believe in GTD. I don’t – not yet.

This template pack includes 32 letter-sized pages of 2007 calendars, including:

* Yearly Planning (26 wks/page, Jan-Dec, facing pages) for 2007 and 2008,
* Academic Planning (26 wks/page, Aug-Jul, facing pages) for the 2007-08 Academic Year,
* 2007 and 2008 one-page 24-month calendar reference
* Dated monthly facing pages, Jan 2007 through Dec 2007.

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Why I Unsubscribed from Gizmodo and Engadget

February 17th, 2007 · No Comments

I unsubscribed from Gizmodo and Engadget today. While I don’t expect this to change the internet, I wish it did.

Let me try and explain why I unsubscribed in the hope that you see my point, and you too unsubscribe:

  1. They are not blogs any more

    They are more like dedicated newspapers that cover the latest shiny “bling” on the street.

  2. They suffer from article diarrhea

    The number of posts they put out is ridiculous. Part of what I trust the people who write the blogs I read is to use their judgement to reduce the amount of data I have to sift through. Human filters, that is what blog authors are, or should be. A good blog will only have good stuff – common sense, really.

  3. The blogs are incredibly sexist

    Some, if not most of the posts on either blog are offensively sexist – and I not even female. How do you justify the use of words like “broad”, “chick”, etc, and the gross sexual language that is seen from time to time.

In short, I used to read the blogs, but now, I find that I can use less than 5% of the posts I see on these blogs. Somewhere in the past few months, they went from being interesting to plain irritating – writing about all kinds of junk in impolite, unprofessional language. Maybe that is what keeps most of their readers happy, but sadly, I don’t belong to that section of the population that likes it. I gain very little useful information, news, tips or insight.

And I am not alone, this post from kottke.org reports on a former editor of gizmodo who winds up a rant about gizmodo with “..because you wanted a new chromed robot turd to put in your pocket.” That’s precisely the kind of language I have come to expect from the “editors” of these blogs(more evidence that these are not blogs but tech-pornographic newsletters).

So off you go engadget and gizmodo – find some other feed reader to infest.

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Robert Adler, TV Remote’s Inventor Dies

February 16th, 2007 · No Comments

Man who glued TV watchers to the couch dies – CNN.com

Robert Adler, who won an Emmy Award along with fellow engineer Eugene Polley for the device that made couch potatoship possible, died Thursday of heart failure at a Boise nursing home at 93, Zenith Electronics Corp. said Friday.

The man to blame for my zillion wasted hours passes away. Thank you, Robert!

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That Multipointed Web 2.0 Badge Thingy Has a Name!

February 13th, 2007 · 1 Comment

You know what I am talking about… If you don’t, here are some prime examples:

web 2.0 badge exhibit 1

web 2.0 badge exhibit 2

You know how difficult it is to search for something when you don’t know what it is called, but you can describe it. I am talking about google here – it is impossible to end up with the right results if you don’t phrase your search in terms of the exact words used on the page that you’d like to end up with.
Well, I knew these things had to have a name, and I just found out what the name was. It is “violator” – so named since it violates the boxy nature and layout of the rest of the page, or ad or whatever.

Peace be unto you as it was unto me a few moments ago!!!

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‘Madame Wikipedia’ runs web giant from village HQ – Yahoo! News

February 12th, 2007 · No Comments

‘Madame Wikipedia’ runs web giant from village HQ – Yahoo! News
“It’s quite simple, I spend all my time running around.”

A peek into the life of Florence Devouard – the chairman of the board of directors of the foundation that runs Wikipedia.

She lives in a village in France and was elevated to the top position mostly as a result of her continued dedication and volunteer work.

Thank you, Florence!

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Glen Murphy’s Projects

February 8th, 2007 · No Comments

Stumbling upon Glen Murphy’s Projects is like finding a treasure trove of ideas that are complete and yet can be expanded a lot further!

Check out Sproutliner – a web-based outliner made in the finest tradition, then check out his timeline tool. When you are done, marvel at the ingenuity behind trip. Absolutely amazing! Have to go back there someday when I am not as busy as I am right now.

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XvsXP.com, Mac OS X Compared to Windows XP

February 8th, 2007 · No Comments

“We pride ourselves in offering some of the most comprehensive comparisons between Apple and Microsoft’s operating systems on the Internet.”

Quite a commendable goal – will make deciding between Windows and OSX much easier. Or more difficult, if you are the kind who is confused by your brain, and prefer to decide with your “heart” instead.

This list of features for comparing the GUIs of Windows XP and OSX is interesting - I have often wondered about how best to compare the GUIs of two different OSes/Desktop environments. If there was a scientific, standard way of evaluating GUIs, we’d know for sure which of GNOME and KDE are better!

Oh, here’s the final score of the OSX Vs. XP comparison, by the way. OSX comes out on top.

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