Sunday, February 18, 2007

Us


I like this image of the earth taken by one of the Voyager spacecrafts. From Carl Sagan's book Pale Blue Dot:
Look again at that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar", every "supreme leader", every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there — on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
Really puts things in a perspective, doesn't it?

P.S. "thousands of confident religions"?? Nicely put :)

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Why can't I tag music?

I wonder why songs are not yet 'taggable'. For the uninitiated, a 'tag' is a word or a short phrase describing an entity. For e.g. this blog post is tagged (labelled) with 3 tags: 'Tags', 'Music' and 'Technology' which describe what it talks about. Tags are now ubiquitous in the Web2.0 world. Photo applications like Flickr, Bookmark managers like Del.icio.us, Blog platforms like Blogger and Wordpress etc. use tags. Google is so sold on tags that it did away with folders altogether in Gmail and replaced it with tags (or 'label's as they call it).

Individual songs should be taggable. It would help a lot while playing music which transcends genres. For e.g. many of Eric Clapton songs can be tagged as Classic Rock or Soft Rock or Blues and should be played even if we select either of these 3 genres. Neither iTunes nor MediaMonkey (the app I use to play songs on my laptop) let me do this. Sucks big time.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Cool new way to search

If you are like me, you use the search bar in Firefox at the top right to do your search. If you are like me, you also have a number of search engines which you use pretty frequently e.g. Google, Wikipedia, Weather.com, Amazon etc. etc.

Enter Yubnub. YubNub is a cool engine that allows you to search multiple websites for anything from one place. If defines shortcuts for each search engine e.g. If you want to search "Seattle" in Google all you type is "g Seattle" in YubNub. "wp Seattle" does a Wikipedia search. And it's pretty comprehensive. All the search engines I use, I could find shortcuts for. Just go "ls <search engine name>" to search among existing shortcuts. In the rare case that you can't find a shortcut for your favorite search engine, you can create a new shortcut in minute.

Now all you have to do is add Yubnub as your only Firefox search engine. Then go Ctrl+K and type on. It's gonna save you hundreds of clicks a day.