With a month to go until one of my favourite Google services is rendered for glue, I’ve been inspired to hunt for a replacement!
The inspiration came in the form of a reminder about all of my treasured Google Buzz content, and how I might want to back it up before it died. I don’t want to, of course, but it did remind me that Google were killing Reader because they are utter bastards.
Sure, I could switch over to feedly or pay for feedbin or something like that, but I do have a bit of a penchant for rolling my own when it comes to web services. And I do pay for this VPS every month.
Upon poking around, I found an open source web-based RSS reader – Tiny Tiny RSS. Developed since 2005 by a deeply sarcastic Russian, and all full of tasty AJAX, I thought it might foot the bill.
So, install it I did! A little wrestle with PostgreSQL later, an import of my feeds from Reader, and the addition of a Fever API emulator plugin then – voila! A fully featured, super quick, can’t-take-it-away-from-me-capricious-online-provider type application, syncing with Reeder on my phone. And what’s more, an hour or so of my time debugging the Fever API emulator has fixed its compatibility with Postgres.
I’ve now had a Google Wave account for about the past 2 weeks. Yet, despite having several of my friends on my contacts list, I haven’ t yet figured out a way to employ it that’s useful. So far, I’m pretty sure I’ve had the standard Wave beginner’s journey: Log in, update status, read through the welcome waves…
Chat with someone just like you would with Google Talk (but with live updating typing, ooer!). Send a wave to someone who’s not online right now, just like you would with Gmail. Play with editing someone else’s conversation, throw a voting gadget in, make fonts and colours all pretty and such.
I’ve had all these excited conversations with people about how revolutionary this thing is and yet despite my intense nerdiness haven’t really managed to get anything much to fruition. My inbox languishes empty, and I scuttle my way back to Gmail again. Have you done anything cool with Wave yet? Has it made some kind of communication much easier for you?
(… I’ll pre-empt many people’s first reaction by letting you know I haven’t been graced with any invites to give out yet.)
Google Latitude offers the ability to display the location of your friends in real-time on your phone handset. Until now, it’s been available on Android phones, Windows Mobile phones and most Nokia S60 phones. From (probably) next week, however, it’ll be available on your iPhone or iPod touch… and therefore might actually start getting used by people.
Somehow, the ability to track people’s locations is kind of creepy to me. Not quite sure whether I’m gonna use it when it’s there, but it’s interesting nonetheless.
I must say, after seeing the keynote presentation for Google Wave which was unveiled this morning, I can suddenly see how as latency and throughput of internet connections improve, new paradigms in communication will evolve. If you have the time (probably about an hour or so), check out the keynote presentation at the bottom of Google’s blog post on the topic.
Imagine the power of a rolled up real-time conversational and collaborative tool for anything from a quick chat to an ongoing team-based document creation effort. Complete with rich text, images, audio, video and pretty much anything else you can think of.