Turning the Telcos Around

There’s an excellent article at TechDirt about the latest threats from the Telcos to charge for a tiered internet. You just have to ask, if you had the choice between two dsl or cable companies and one had Google and the other didn’t, which one would you choose? All it takes is a couple of the top tier internet companies to call the bluff and this whole thing falls apart.

Nobody wants this to turn into a shooting war, but the Telcos have to realize that what they have is of no value without the rest of the internet.

Bad sign for me

Is it bad that when I picked up the mail today, I was excited to see a new netflix dvd had arrived, but rather than opening the package, my first instinct was to reach for the laptop to check the site to see what had been delivered?

I’m going to have to have my laptop surgically removed at some point.

Personal Search Engine: CloudGrove

So, I’ve got a little pet project that I’ve been working on in my spare time. I know there’s been some discussion on the blogs about funny names for Web2.0 projects, and the driving force behind the name for CloudGrove was that it’s become very difficult to find relatively short and usable domain names. Especially if you’re not willing to buy a name off of someone, you’ve got to get pretty creative.

So, what is CloudGrove. It’s my answer to holes in several of the tools that I had been using every day. I enjoy using tools like Delicious, Bloglines, and Google, but I felt that something was missing from this toolset and that it could be approached in a better way.

There’s an incredibly large amount of content that I’m viewing every day from RSS feeds. I currently read ~100 feeds and have found that they produce on average 500 posts / day. There’s also other pieces of content that I find interesting on the web and would like to remember. All of this adds up to quite a bit in a fairly short amount of time.

With that background I set out to create a tool that would sit in the Personal Search Engine / Content space. A tool that would let you define and enter the content that was of interest to you and then give you the best tools for searching, reading, and tagging of the content.

Google is very good at tracking down one web page out of the billions on the internet, but I felt that there is even more that we can do when we narrow the scope to only the content that interests you. Even on the best of days less than 1% of the web is of any interest to you. So lets create tools to let you define what that 1% is and then give you the best tools to work with that portion. Tools that wouldn’t be feasible if you were looking at the web in its entirety.

This project might be productized at some point, but for right now it’s an experiment.

Static blocks in java classes are evil

This is a pet peeve of mine. Developers that place static blocks of code among java classes. While I know that according to the letter of the language this is a completely valid bit of code, I find that it’s usually the result of a developer being lazy. Not looking for the proper place to initialize things. There’s often all sorts of assumptions made in these blocks since there isn’t any error catching being done. Since this bit of code is outside the lifecycle of the application it can have unintended consequences and break things in very funny ways.

New version of MyEclipse

There’s a new version(4.1.1) of MyEclipse out now that fixed a few of the problems with earlier versions. With AJAX becoming all the rage among developers the tools are just starting to catch up. MyEclipse has always been the first plugin that I install on a dev box after Eclipse is installed. Now the javascript development plugins are catching up and becoming quite helpful. And for the low yearly subscription cost, you just can’t get a better tool that covers all aspects of java web development.