September 29, 2007

Wana build a revolutionary web product?

This is a good start for developers who dream to revolutionize the web! However, to build a Next-Gen web application, it takes more than just brainstorming. Extend this list with your comments...

Mix n' Match
There are some killer combinations yet to be explored. For instance, how about "Blog + Social Network + Wiki". I'm sure several such combinations can be introduced by trying to mix 'n match the existing web.

Induce intelligence
Self learning & pattern-matching algorithms can be used to develop decision-capable applications. Such software can literally change the way we depend on computers for our daily lives. Imagine an application in which we can record our concrete experience & drop a line on what we learned each day. The application remembers the lessons learned and shall advice us in similar situations on demand.

Provide a solution to unify data & processes from several sources. Think of how MS Outlook provided a unified approach for communication at work. Get hold of a concept that is available in numerous forms... try to group them, aggregate them, and unify them! Recently, Plaxo aims to do just that with address book. What more? I can quickly think of Social networks which keeps growing in number and are hard to manage.

Extending what Web2.0 taught us, we should bring forward the concept of collective intelligence into several other online activities. Google has already shown us the way for collaboration in its Calendar, Spreadsheets & Docs applications. How about a collaboration to compose an email, or to make a decision. I remember reading about a Microsoft's research project that collects a set of location-based images taken by several individuals, and creates a wholesome image of that location. Great effort!


Our blogs live in their own worlds isolated from one another. How about a way to connect the web, and enhance the content we publish with additional links and pics. Imagine a web that relates our experience with other people's experience via semantic meta data.

Meta-Data will be the KEY for a Next-Gen Web company. Semantic-Web is the only technology contender so far to create a revolutionary web experience. If you are not impressed, you do the research on what you believe can enhance today's web. Of course, research is not everybody's cup of tea. But, its a sweet avenue to explore by PHD geeks and research addicts.

Ubiquitous Computing
Several electronics now include micro-chips and software to communicate with the web, create information-flow, and provide a utility value. PDAs, MP3 players, Cell-phones, GPS devices, and many more such products in the market provide computing outside the PC. Future software should cater to the needs of such products, communicate with Software-Agents, and instruct micro-robots.

September 25, 2007

Google's path widens for good

google_iconGoogle is sure enough the Next-Gen Microsoft. In 1990s, Startup CEOs feared to get in the way of Microsoft, as it was the Don of the decade. Now in 21st century, they have one more name to fear, and that is Google.

Google is slowly spreading itself to every corner of a geek's life. Though only a few of its products including 'Search' are positioned to be the best in their domain, they're all certainly exquisite & rank within Top 5.

If rumors are true, Google is supposedly building a G-phone that would be offered for free. Read more about its possible configuration from Engadget. We've seen how Google directly competes with Yahoo in many of its services such as Email, IM, Calendar, etc. In the recent past, Google had also bid for wireless spectrum. It contributes heavily for all things that is OPEN - open apps, open platform, open devices, open services and open network.

Google is trying to diversify like how Microsoft did, but without the evil tag. Take time to look at how Microsoft gets into anything that is hip and trendy. Be it O.S, Software, Game-Consoles, Web, Keyboards, Webcams, or Programming. That's a very impressive strategy. However, some wonder why? ? ? The answer is - If they are glued to their expertise alone, death will not be far off.

A good case-study is Apple, Inc.. Apple is sure a great company and they make the coolest O.S, Software, and Computers. But, it was in great trouble until Steve Jobs launched Ipod and pulled Apple into the music industry. It realized the importance of diversification a little later than the other big-shots like Microsoft, Oracle, IBM, ...

So, Google has made the right choice to diversify their product line-up, and continue to focus on their core strength (Search).

September 20, 2007

You can now have a Social Network of your own

I'm greatly impressed by the effort of the 2 geeks in building the framework called "NoseRub". It is a de-centralized white-label social network that supports basic content types like media, links, micropublishing and text.

Each of us have a blog of our own, then why not have a social network of our own too... NoseRub is an effort to fill that space. This light-weight social network will display a lifestream of our online activity, track friends from various other networks, and make quick notes to the web.

You always have full control of your data & layout, as you can install NoseRub on your own server and have it connect to other servers out there. Check out this page for a walkthrough using screenshots. Btw, its free and open-source.

Are you wondering what de-centralized means...? Here is an explanation from its founder:

NoseRub is not only a social network aggregator, but claims to be decentralised. What does this mean? You can install NoseRub on your own server and let it connect with your friends NoseRub server, or with hosted NoseRub servers. A good similarity is wordpress. You can either host your blog at, or install the software from on your own server.

Example: I have an account on a NoseRub framework running on my server, and you may have yours on your server. I will still be able to add you as a friend and communicate seamlessly with your account.

I'm also impressed at how it makes use of FOAF micro-format to store information and communicate with other NoseRub servers. FOAF provides a RDF/XML format for downloading profile and relationship data, and is a project under the umbrella of Semantic Web. Great work by NoseRub folks!

Update: A similar approach taken by SixApart is worth watching out for. They just announced the upcoming launch of "open social graph". Also checkout this huge news on Google's Open API plans.

September 12, 2007

Scalable Architecture

I came across the blog 'High Scalability' that deals with the underlying Software Architecture of several webapps and enterprise applications. This will sure help developers like us in building a scalable product.

Check out these links

September 10, 2007

Flaky Mondays - Sep10

Lets kick start our lazy Monday mornings by engaging in these rejuvenating flaky topics of the week. Looking forward for your participation!

Just login with your OpenID. Then, make an Entry for the following topics!

  1. Write One-Liner - Stupid People & their activity
  2. Imagine - Aliens visit Earth
  3. Brainstorm - Challenges facing the youth

September 08, 2007

How to quickly develop a Web application

Now, developing a web application has become a weekend activity for some... Gone were the days when you have to deal with complex code behind .NET or J2EE. So, what are the options to quickly build an industry standard webapp?

Use of Ready-made software

Easiest of all, you can use white-label frameworks to clone an existing webapp. Check out the chart published by Techcrunch on white-label social networks available. Below is a summary of clone projects mentioned by Read/WriteWeb.

Folkstr is a micro-blogging platform that mimics Twitter, but without the SMS features. It is a self-hosted and extensible social network developed in PHP and uses MySQL.

Pligg is a perfect replication of Digg, and adds some features such as tagging and the ability to automatically share links on other popular social news and bookmarking sites.

Scuttle is an open-source project that replicates the popular Delicious Bookmarking service of Yahoo. But, a new version hasn't been released in over a year.

Video Share Enterprise is a PHP/MySQL script that clones YouTube. Video Share duplicates most of YouTube's features pretty well, and powers a number of small-to-medium sized sites. Yet another You-Tube clone script is vShare.

One of the most popular and well-developed MySpace clone scripts out there is phpFoX. This is behind some fairly large niche MySpace clones, and has most of the features of MySpace.

AJAX DeskTop StartPage Enterprise is a PHP and MySQL based AJAX start page script that mimics the sites like Pageflakes ands Netvibes.

UPDATE: Check out more such frameworks listed by AjaxFlakes. There is a mention of NewsCloud, Dolphin, PHPizabi, Elgg, Mugshot, AroundMe, GetBoo, and more...

Using frameworks based on dynamic languages

Ruby on Rails (RoR)
The open-source RoR project innovated the coupling of the powerful Ruby language and the Rails framework. It aims to ease database-driven website development with a template pattern called 'Convention over Configuration'. But, many developers including me are not yet ready to get away from core Java. Luckily, Grails framework is now a good substitute to RoR.

Groovy & Grails
Groovy provides powerful features of a dynamic language, and proves to be a handy tool to Unit test Java applications. It offers a syntax similar to Java, supports Java libraries, and compiles to Java Byte Code. So, calling of methods between the two languages can be interoperable. Groovy can serve as a good alternative to Perl and Ruby.

Grails is a open source web application framework based on the Groovy. Similar to RoR, Grails also embraces convention over configuration. Additionally, Grails uses other proven tools to provide state-of-art technologies. In Grails, you will find ORM mapping provided by Hibernate, Dependency Injection and MVC architecture by Spring Framework, and layout management by SiteMesh.

PHP 2.0
We can create portals and simple web applications using PHP. Its the most preferred implementation language by all of Yahoo Portals.

Rich Internet Applications (RIA)

RIAs like JavaFX, Adobe AIR / Flex, and Microsoft Silverlight are slowly getting popular among developers. You may want to experiment with them.

UPDATE: The description of RoR & Grails framework is updated with original content.

September 07, 2007

Meta Blogging - Purely Boring

Meta Blogging - Purely boring! There are several blogs on the web that talk about blogging itself. They ramble about what to blog, how to make blog-revenue, and good practices of blogging. As a beginner, I find a handful of posts useful... But later on, they make me feel sick. Probably a few articles on this topic would be good enough. An entire blog about meta-blogging might be an overkill. Anyway, that's my stand on it!

Some of the meta-bloggers I (occasionally) read are ProBlogger, and Performancing. These are truly good and useful. Some good links here...

  1. 10 Sure-Fire Ways to Get RSS Readers Visiting Your Blog
  2. 10 Techniques I Used To Go From 0 To 12,000 RSS Subscribers In Seven Months
  3. Blog Revenue Options
  4. How to write great blog content
  5. How to find readers for your blog
  6. SEO for Bloggers
  7. More Blog tips from Darren

If you are an amateur blogger, you must have written about your blogging experience, how you started it, what you have learnt from blogging, etc... All such stuff is also referred to as meta-blogging. I usually consider them as topic fillers. Topic fillers are the ones that we write about when we cannot find any other topic to blog. I know what you're thinking, and you are right! This post also falls into that category.

September 05, 2007

Blog re-branding

Thanks to all the readers and subscribers of my blog. I've been enjoying my blogging experience for all these years. But, I always wondered what type of articles interest my readers the most... Of course, A quick Poll can give me a rough answer. So, Please take the Poll on the sidebar and help me write more posts that match your interest.

I'm planning on an upcoming series of "Flaky Mondays!"
Lets kick start our lazy Monday mornings by answering a rejuvenating flaky question of the week. You will also have a chance to suggest a flaky question for the upcoming weeks. Looking forward for your participation!

Meanwhile, hope you have noticed the refreshing header, a tagline that describes my blog theme, and a better look & feel!

September 03, 2007

Love with Life

Today is Sri Krishna Jayanti! Lets think of him, and learn a few lessons from his teachings on his birthday. Here is a quote by Osho...

Krishna is the only person in the whole history of human consciousness who is tremendously in love with life, with the poetry of life, with the music of life, with the dance of life. He is not at all life-negative, he is very affirmative. And he accepts life as it is; he does not put god and the world as opposites.

Krishna is far closer to life. The flute is the symbol of life. Dressed beautifully, standing in a dancing posture, the flute in his hands on his lips, it looks like he is going to sing a song at any moment. He looks so alive, and he is wearing a beautiful crown of flowers with peacock feathers. This is far truer to life. That's how life is. It is tremendous joy.

Links: The essence of Lord Krishna's teachings.

September 02, 2007

What kind is your Blog?

Lets now look at the various ways to classify a blog...

Ref: CorporateBlogging.Info

Ref: ICE

Closedblog Bloginfoconduit Blogparticipation
Closed Blogs
such as Baby blogs
Blogs as Conduit of Information Blog as Participant in "The Conversation"
Connectors of ideas and people.

Ref: CyberSoc

Here is what my blog is... It is a personal blog that resembles the last 3 mentioned types. In my blog, you will find a great variety of topics blended with my standpoint. So, what is the theme of my BLOG?

My Blog Theme: "Attitude, Technology and Reality"

Wow! I never thought my blog will ever have a theme. This is something I came up with as I'm writing this post. Some other day, I will write a detailed post on my theme after I invest more thought on it.