Archive for the ‘Fun Stuff’ Category

Udacity Certificates

Posted: April 25, 2012 in Fun Stuff
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Received my first two certificates from Udacity online course.

Join Udacity today and enjoy the revolution in online learning.

duckduckgo

DuckDuckGo, the three-year-old search engine has recently registered a traffic of more than a million searches per day. What differentiates it from other major search engine like Google and Bing is like it features a don’t-track, don’t-bubble privacy policy. According to them,

When you search Google, and click on a link, your search term is sent to that site, along with your browser & computer info, which can often uniquely identify you. That’s creepy, but who cares about some random site?

Those sites usually have third-party ads, and those third-parties build profiles about you, and that’s why those ads follow you everywhere. That’s creepy too, but who cares about some herpes ads?

Your profile can also be sold, and potentially show up in unwanted places, like insurance, credit & background checks. But there’s more. Remember your searches?

Google also saves them. Your saved searches can be legally requested, and then come back to bite you (happens). Or a bad Google employee could go snooping (happens). Or Google could get hacked (happens). That’s why we don’t send your searches to other sites. Or store any personal information at all.

That’s our privacy policy in a nutshell. So don’t get tracked when searching.
Use DuckDuckGo instead.

 

On the issue of customized or tailored search result, they also wrote:

When you search the Internet, search engines now show different results to different people.

Results are tailored to who you are, based on your search history and your click history.

Since you often click on things you agree with, you keep getting more and more of what you already agree with, which means other stuff gets demoted (effectively filtered).

This raises the question: what are you missing?

In other words, you are living in a Filter Bubble that promotes things it thinks you’ll like, and demotes (effectively filters) out some of the rest, which may limit your exposure to opposing information.

Unfortunately, it’s not easy to pop your filter bubble, because the technology is used so much across the Internet.

We offer you an alternative: a search engine that breaks you out of your Filter Bubble by default, plus other differences like real privacy.

Try DuckDuckGo today.

 

Google Plus

Posted: August 8, 2011 in Fun Stuff

Google launched a new social networking service Google Plus on June 28, 2011, in an ‘invite-only’ phase. Two weeks after the launch, Google CEO Larry Page announced that Google+ had over 10 millions users (compared to Facebook’s 750 million users).

Here are some of the features in Google Plus:

“Circles,” think social circles, akin to Facebook’s lists
“Sandbar,” a user-unifying toolbar
“Sparks,” a search engine for sharing content between users
“Huddle,” a group messaging app that allows users to share with certain “Circles”
“Hangouts,” group video chatting designed to allow up to 10 users video chat at once

Videos

Google+ Project : A quick look
Google+ Project : Circles
Google+ Project : Sparks
Google+ Project : Hangouts
Google+ Project : Instant Upload
Google+ Project : Huddle

Angry Birds Species

Posted: August 3, 2011 in Fun Stuff
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Here’s an interesting comic strip detailing the behavior of each angry birds character, adapted from theoatmeal.com.

Canvas in HTML 5

Posted: July 31, 2011 in Fun Stuff
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The HTML5 specification has been out for quite some time. Recently in this year, major browsers such as Firefox 4+, Internet Explorer 9 and Google Chrome has added support for the new HTML5 specification. For the novice end-users like most of us, we have not felt any difference with the new browsers. One reason is that it takes time for the web sites to make use of the newly introduced features in HTML5.

One of the new feature is the canvas element. It supports for dynamic, scriptable 2D drawing onto the web page itself. The canvas element also boasts hardware-acceleration – using your graphics card to help make the 2D rendering smoother and faster.

Enough for the introduction, here are some demos using the canvas element. These demos are different than those of Adobe Flash or Java Applets that we are used to during those days behind. Your browser supports the canvas natively without any plugins installed. That’s the greatness of HTML5!

End note: There are already many javascript-based game engines being actively developed. These game engines utilize the capabilities of current browsers, for instance, the canvas element, css3, AJAX, etc. Here is one of my favorite introduction of the Aves game engine.

Optimize Your PC and Save a Tree!

Posted: July 12, 2011 in Fun Stuff
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Have you ever wondered how much energy your computer consumes?

  • A typical desktop computer consumes around 65-250 watts.
  • The attached monitor adds another 80 watts surplus if you use an old-school 17″ CRT; but significantly less (15-70 watts) if you are using an LCD monitor.
  • A notebook seldom consumes more that 60 watts.
  • Don’t overlook your wireless router because it’s going to cost you 10-15 watts.
  • During standby, most devices use around 1-6 watts. However, there is this ‘One Watt Initiative’ that aims to cap device’s power usage at 1 watt when in standby mode.

Recently I started using Granola – a free power management software. The company that develops it, Miserware, claims that the software brings about 35% reduction in CPU power consumption without sacrificing performance. Personally, I like to use it to extend my laptop’s battery life and I would recommend this software to every PC users. The official website is grano.la. Granola

Image-to-text Converter

Posted: July 4, 2011 in Fun Stuff
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I had been using lynx to browse the web from the linux console and I was searching for a tool that would display image on the terminal.

Instead of getting what I need initially, I found a really interesting site. The site is TEXT-IMAGE.com and it allows you to convert an image into colorful text.

The picture below shows a capture of my result. Try it out!