Okay so I am tentatively going to say that I aim to be posting a bit more. No promises as I am still very busy, but on with it!
So yesterday was April 1st and as usual we saw numerous gags take the blogosphere, some funny, some were so quick you would have missed them. I posted about one on The Global Geek Blog that I found quite humorous. That said I did not go out and hunt them all down. Fortunately a few kind souls have done that for us.
Wikipedia have compiled a more definitive list of jokes and pranks. This list also includes print, television and audio media. Might also be worth checking the legit stories that were not April Fools gags but were mistaken as such. Always good to know. I just about gave up reading the RSS feeds yesterday as I was begining to think that everything was a joke. Must have been a bad day for news.
2007 April Fools Jokes by goodstuff: Do the April Fools Jokes Web2.0 style with this tour on Trailfire. It would have been nice if this was a bit more exhaustive, but that would be a huge job to put together. Nice way to see them though, including descriptions.
Have fun and get thinking for next year, maybe your prank will top the lot, might make you famous even.
There are plenty of lists around the place, top 10 this 10 best of that. Here is a twist in more ways than one.
Firefox is a highly customisable browser, as such they don’t make it hard to create extensions for it. If you subscribe to the RSS feed for new Firefox extensions there must be at least 10 a week. Generally extensions at some great functionality to Firefox. Just for your information they are not like Internet Explorer Add-ons that you have to remove with the Add/Remove Programs. Firefox extensions are very easy to remove inside the browser itself and when they are gone they are gone. So given all that there are some duds.
scrybe has just released this “teaser” video for their service that is due for beta release this month. I am impressed. The video gives a walk through of scrybe and it’s features. What impressed me is that there appears to have been some research into the human mind and how to build a web application around our psychology. By that I mean that it appears to be logical and plays on what our brain focus on as far as context and focus. Indeed:
“Scrybe is not an incremental
improvement but a whole paradigm shift in the design of online organizers”.
The video is seven minutes but it is worth the watch (see video below). There is also an eleven minute version.
You know those big diaries or personal organizers that you can get with everything you want and need to plan your life in it? They have the daily, weekly, page views (depending on the model you get). They also feature “to do” lists and yearly planners along with stuff like world times listed. This on-line service is just that only it won’t cost you $100 bucks and weigh you down.
In many ways this is a service that will rival features that can be found in such applications as Google Notebook and Google Calendar. While these two services are related they are separate and not integrated with each other. Scrybe offers this integral relationship and more, I have yet to see a slick, simple yet feature rich application such as described here.
The calendar view is a zoomable interface that you can zoom to the year, month, week and day then out again while remaining in context. The action is smooth and seems to be intuitive. The Weekly views and I assume daily views allow you to click and type entries as well as a powerful drag and drop feature from the “task” list that appears on the right. This was an impressive move that when done placed the task within the time context that it was given in the task list. If you need to extend the time in the view just drag the bar down to the length of time required. This intuitiveness without assumption is excellent as some applications make assumptions based on the action not on the context of the item. Scrybe offers this contextual relevance which will be appreciated by the user.
The task list was also a nice feature in that there is a task list for the day with tasks that can be put off for another day flagged, great for the procrastinator. Lists are also event orientated so you can have multiple lists of tasks that are for one day but are itemised around the context of an event. For example. Today I might have to go to work and there may be a list of tasks for work. I might have a birthday to prepare for tomorrow with tasks that are needed to be done today. That means there are two task lists; one for the birthday and one for work, but they are represented together for the day. They can however be viewed separately within their event, work and birthday. I think this is a way of making sense of the clutter in our brains that we have to contend with everyday, but scrybe breaks this down into manageable components.
You can also import with cut and paste; lists and data from files on your local machine such as Word and Excel. The nice touch is that these items are placed in a task list with check boxes and with context. You can also add notes with a very simple interface with minimal formatting. Simple is good, you don’t want to add to your chaotic life with a “Word” type interface. But I would like to see colour added to the options or a highlighter with different colours. I would find that good for focusing my attention.
The meeting manager is an interesting feature where you can plan a meeting with global parties take into account if they are in bed or not. Very intuitive feature that has a nice graphical interface. Currently I use The World Clock – Meeting planner for this. Which is what this is but it is offered in a very nice looking graphical interface and also integrated with the calendar and task list.
“Thought Streams”, nice term isn’t it? Refers to a feature that allows you to collect information in text and pictures for a project or research from the web and puts them into a “stream”. This is much like Google Notebook. The difference is that this data can be supplemented with documents off your own local machine. For example an Excel document with the budget details. The best thing and most attractive feature of this is the presentation of the data. It is presented to you with an absolutely stunning newspaper type format with a “mini” view at the bottom and it looks very professional. I am not sure if the average user could pull off what this looks like in the video but if they can then that will be exceptional.
One last feature that made my eyes light up and then smile was the “sync” function. Well it is not the sync that you might be thinking as I was. It “sync’s” with paper! Yup paper, with folding lines… not quite what I had in mind. But clever idea and it works as far as taking it with you. The other area that refers to syncing is the fact that you can use the service offline, make changes that re-sync once you reconnect. There was no mention in the video of how this is accomplished, especially since there are no downloads required, but it does have instructions as to how to do it (there is a difference).
Other features promised:
Seamless offline access – without any installations
Rich and fast like a desktop
Intuitive zoomable calendar views
Organize your thoughts with bookmarks, web snippets, images and files
To-do lists integrated with your calendar
Share and collaborate with friends and co-workers
Elegant, compact and handy print formats
Easily work across multiple timezones
Import and export from other apps easily
I will be interested to see what other features are in this bundle. I would be over-joyed if there were such things as RSS technology and shared documents and contributers.This is a good review for a product that I have not used, based on a video. It is because it is rare that a truly original and new idea comes about. The contextual relevance and intuitive interface make this an item to watch, especially if the video is a clue to what might be in store. Scrybe is offering some solutions to problems that plague other on-line applications in a visually stunning and easy to use way. If you are interested in trying out scrybe then hook up with the beta on their site and leave your details.