Google's plans for their dark fiber
Technology pundit Robert X. Cringely
has the WalMart
business model in mind in its strategy to buy up dark fiber.
"...in one of Google's underground parking garages in Mountain View...in a secret area off-limits even to regular GoogleFolk, is a shipping container. But it isn't just any shipping container. This shipping container is a prototype data center. Google hired a pair of very bright industrial designers to figure out how to cram the greatest number of CPUs, the most storage, memory and power support into a 20- or 40-foot box. We're talking about 5,000 Opteron processors and 3.5 petabytes of disk storage that can be dropped-off overnight by a tractor-trailer rig. The idea is to plant one of these puppies anywhere Google owns access to fiber, basically turning the entire Internet into a giant processing and storage grid..."» Read the article...
Did you miss Pink Week?
Designing "topic centers"
I've been working on some new page types at work called "topic centers." They're basically intended to make related content from disparate sections on the site readily available in one place. For example: 1) audio software for your PC, 2) MP3s you can download, 3) games for your PC, and 4) video previews/trailers for upcoming DVD releases, all collected in a new topic center called "Home Entertainment."
It's been fun, because I can push the design envelope a little since these new sections need to look rather different than normal category "doors"
(as we call them).
One of the challenges is to present these somewhat dissimilar content types in a unified page design. Another challenge is to humanize the site more — presenting hundreds of pages of software downloads can look boring as hell if you don't infuse some personality into your site.
So far, I think my solutions are working pretty well. Here's a snippet
from one of the other topic centers, this one called "Best of Download.com," on which we feature the most popular downloads according to both our members and our editors.
Filed under: design
You Knit What??
by punk rock knitter
is hilarious. Velma
, you'd better hope none of your stuff attracts their notice : D
From their disclaimer: "Look kids, we're ragging on nasty knits here, (And occasionally a model's obviously airbrushed 15 inch waist) because we ourselves are knitters, and we know that knitting a garment takes a LOT of time and effort, and it pisses us off that these people think we're going to waste our time on this crap.
"Seriously. It's not like we're attacking random knitbloggers, or anything, which we've considered, because damn, some of y'all have designed some seriously fugly shit. But, we're not overly fond of death-by-knitting-needle threats, so we decided against it.
"So, we're sticking to national publications/yarn company published patterns/online knitzines. If you're some random onlooker and you want to take shit personally, big fat boohoo to you because, one, you didn't design the fugknit in question so get over it, and two, don't you have some knitting to do?"Edit:
I just read every entry in the entire blog, back to last April.
These guys have a hilarious Flash site
. Right up Mr. Attitude's alley.
Microsoft to undermine AJAX?
is reportedly developing a web app development framework code-named Atlas
In case you haven't been paying attention, AJAX is the technology to watch. Even a few of the giants are testing the waters with AJAX; Google's Personalized Homepage
and Google Maps
are good examples, and both Yahoo!
and Microsoft have launched beta sites using AJAX recently.» More on Microsoft's Atlas...» More on AJAX...
appears to be making an entry into the area of user-customizable web experience sites with the new Live.com
, which appears to be using AJAX
for things like drag and drop without page refresh.» http://ideas.live.com/» http://www.live.com/Edit:
I just came across another Microsoft site using AJAX, and this one's implementation is a little better. Start.com
is a stripped down customizable home page.» http://www.start.com/
Fancy newsletter in shiny metal and minty green
We just finished a long-needed redesign of one of our newsletters, the Download Dispatch Mac Edition
. All our newsletters are available in HTML or plain text, with the notable exception of the lowly Mac newsletter, which had been text-only until today.
Here's a before-and-after comparison...» Subscribe to the Mac Dispatch
(or any of Download's newsletters — PC games, PC software, free MP3s, etc.)
Steve Jobs: America's most prominent Arab-American
An article (killed by Fast Company
) reveals that Steve Jobs
may be the most prominent living Arab-American. Jobs, head of Apple
, was adopted as a child. Frederic Alan Maxwell
's article (first few paragraphs here
) reveals that his biological father, Abdulfattah Jandali
, immigrated from Syria in 1952.
Not surprisingly, Jobs' reaction to Maxwell's biographical digging has been less than enthusiastic
Filed under: apple, people
Flickr's humble beginnings as an MMORPG
In an interview with Flickr's Eric Costello
, Jesse James Garrett
of Adaptive Path
learns that the popular photo sharing site actually began as an offshoot of a massively multiplayer online game called The Game Neverending
Also notable is the news that "soon enough in Flickr you?ll be able to order prints, which is a much-requested feature from our users," according to Costello.
I'm still betting that Flickr will be swallowed whole by Yahoo!
(Flickr was bought by Y! a few months ago), since it's Yahoo!'s habit of completely obliterating the brand and interface of purchased properties; anyone remember the great branding and UI of eGroups
? No? Exactly. Because Yahoo! bought 'em in order to create Yahoo! Groups
Revver: New viral video site
From News.com: "Forget Google. The Internet's real killer app has always been the strange little amateur videos, like the Star Wars Kid
or the Numa Numa Dance
, that find explosive popularity almost overnight...."» Read News.com article...» Visit Revver.com...Edit:
Another new video site — YouTube.com
Filed under: video, humor, distractions, tech