Friday, April 08, 2005


Odds and sods

The good news is - it's Friday. The bad news is, I have reached a point of sleep deprivation so intense that I don't think I can form sentences today, let alone paragraphs. I was up with Tristan from 3:30 until 4:30 this morning, then up with Simon for the day from 5:25 onward. YAWN!

So, rather than titillate and amaze you with prose today, let's play show and tell. No, not that kind of show and tell you perv! Here's some cool stuff I've found on the Interweb recently and I thought I'd share.

First, if you like to surf aimlessly or follow links just to see where they lead (and who doesn't? Gawd, the things I could get done if http had never been invented!) you'll like Stumble Upon. (Thanks to Batman for this one!) It's kind of difficult to describe - you download a little toolbar for your Web browser, and when you like a site you click the thumbs up for 'I like it' and that adds it to some sort of queue. Then you can go into their database and surf things that other people have recommended. Here's how they describe it:

The StumbleUpon system uses the ratings from each of our members in two ways – first to better understand your own personal preferences and secondly to share the sites that you rate as I like it! with other like-minded members. Each time you rate a site StumbleUpon uses this information to determine exactly which sites will be of interest to you. The more sites you rate within each of your chosen topics, the more accurate we will be in presenting you with the high quality web sites you are looking for. Web sites which are collectively rated as I like it! by members with interests similar to your own will be presented to you. Plus, by rating a site as I like it! you are telling StumbleUpon to recommend the site to your friends and peers.

Next up, take a look at del.icio.us. This is even harder to explain than StumbleUpon, and I've only been playing with it a little bit, but it's cool. It's a way of sharing your "favourites" on a Web site, instead of in your browser menu (and please excuse my pathetic un-techiness in these descriptions. Yes, I'm probably using the wrong words and getting it all wrong. But you can overcome my ignorance if you try!) you keep them organized on this page. So I'm surfing, and I read an article that relates to potty training... I can run del.icio.us' little applet and assign a 'tag' to the page that says potty training, so not only can I find it later, but other people looking for info on potty training can search by tag, too. Get it? The other neat feature is you can see what other people think is cool or useful by seeing that a lot of other people have added a particular tag to their collection.

Which is how I found the next gem on our list, Google Sightseeing. Remember earlier this week, I was talking about Google Maps? This is an evolution of that: satellite pictures of cool places like the Hollywood sign, the Hoover Dam, Area 51 and the Neverland Ranch, to name a few. Virtual tourism via satellite imagery - the geek in me rejoices! This just got launched, so it will probably have a lot more cool stuff in the future. (Ooooo, look at me, FINALLY on the cutting edge of a trend!)

And finally, here's a bit of silliness from one of my stat counters. Take a look at the poll over on the sidebar -->
I've been dying to try this out and see how it works. Play along with me, and help make my day a little smoother - one less decision to make!!

(Edited to delete the poll and to thank you sweet, wonderful people for giving me additional ammunition (as if I needed it) to support a well-deserved take-out dinner! That was fun, we'll play with polls again one day.)

Got anything else fun to share on a Friday?