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

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.