Web roundup 11/2

* Really want to like Jotspot and Jotspot live as wikis have some really appealing features. But I tried to do a simple thing — family christmas lists – and gave up and went back to tadalists. Just less confusing clutter. From the experience I kind of wonder if, for personal and shared documents, wikis are a tweener. I find myself gravitating toward a very structured task specific service like tadalists, or a totally unstructured shared document like writely. But I remain entranced by TiddlyWiki
* Anxious to try Dabble out. I’d love something with 20% of the power of Excel, but completely roamable.
* Phil finds google maps for mobile devices. Great first attempt.
* Memeorandum has found its way into my set of homepages.
* Don’t know if Healthline is it, but someone is going to do a great consumer health resource service.
* Haven’t had time to try last.fm but interested in better music recos. downloading now.


  • I tried to register ignitionlive.com but it was taken. i guess we can’t enter the new “live” era.
  • I’m not saying MSFT has committed this error, but I like Joel’s definition of “the Marimba Phenomenon”what happens when you spend more on PR and marketing than on development. “Result: everybody checks out your code, and it’s not good yet. These people will be permanently convinced that your code is simple and inadequate, even if you improve it drastically later.”
  • Office Live sounds interesting — and I wonder if it isn’t a great boon for startups. By validating a hosted intranet offering, Microsoft is kick starting the market. If the Microsoft product isn’t a homerun, someone will fill the void.

Related posts: Software roundup 10/18, Software and service roundup, Software Roundup 10/5

PC software state

Phil on tagging and search history“The race is on to push more and more browser state out into the cloud from the PC, and to more seamlessly blur browsing, tagging, and authoring.”

It shouldn’t be just browser state. All PC state should be moving into the cloud. Increasingly this is one of the top criteria I use to eval software.

Joel on GOOG vs MSFT

A very senior Microsoft developer who moved to Google told me that Google works and thinks at a higher level of abstraction than Microsoft. “Google uses Bayesian filtering the way Microsoft uses the if statement,” he said. That’s true. Google also uses full-text-search-of-the-entire-Internet the way Microsoft uses little tables that list what error IDs correspond to which help text. Look at how Google does spell checking: it’s not based on dictionaries; it’s based on word usage statistics of the entire Internet, which is why Google knows how to correct my name, misspelled, and Microsoft Word doesn’t. [Link]

Nice mention of JudysBook

Over at Tipmonkies —

  • “Judy’s Book, the yellow pages of Web 2.0”
  • “Judy’s Book is an awesome resource with a great back story.”
  • “This wouldn’t be Web 2.0 without a little Google Map action so you can also see listings from Judy’s Book via a handy map.”

(I’m on the board)

Software and service roundup

  • Web2.0 mashup matrix.  OK i don’t really know what web2.0 is and I sure don’t know that all the tools and services in this matrix make it any clearer — but this is a way cool matrix of tools and services.  Found elicit via this matrix
  • PC Mag free software review.  Haven’t read yet but usually some gems in here
  • Tried out copilot over the weekend.  OK if you absolutely have no other way to remotely debug a machine, I guess this is OK.  And I admire their pricing model, it aligns exactly with users — a daily fee that is not outrageous.  But this thing is so sssssslllllllooooowwwww.  Use the built-in RDP tools in XP if you can, they are much faster.
  • Myprogs.net — tagging applied to software.  Great way to find yet more crap to install on your system.
  • Thread on using greasemonkey to mine microformats from web pages.  I watch this with anticipation.  Would be highly useful to be able to suck phone nums, addresses, events, etc from web pages.
  • Phil on some new ambitious ajax apps — zimbro and meeba.  I don’t think the vast majority of people here at ignition would mind if we moved to an ajax mail client.  Everyone already uses OWA from home/the road — people rarely VPN in to use email anymore.  Airset worth looking at too.
  • Free terabyte mail service.  Wow.