Wednesday, May 24, 2006

FireBug 0.4: JavaScript Debugging on a Whole New Level

FireBug 0.4 is out today. It is simply a wonderful little gem. After using it for a day, I don't think I will use Venkman, the venerable JavaScript debugger, very much from now on. Although FireBug is dubbed light weight, it has the right combination of most useful features for JavaScript development. It is several tools nicely packaged in one. Check it out. I am sure you will like it.

A big thanks goes to Joe Hewitt, FireBug's creator. Like I said before, watch out when a great developer scratches his/her own itch.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Yahoo Laments Not Buying Google

Which wiseman says there is no new thing under the sun? The technology industry is full of dramas. Yahoo CEO laments not buying Google in 2001.
So Semel said he had dinner with Larry Page and Sergey Brin, asking them what their business was with Yahoo paying only $7 million annually as its biggest licensor of Google search technology.

"They had no thought process on the subject," Semel said in the conversation, which was posted online Thursday at the New Yorker Web site.

So Semel nevertheless asked to buy Google. They replied that they wanted $1 billion and didn't want to sell. Semel said he'd think about the price.

Another dinner and Semel agreed to the $1 billion. Larry and Sergey replied that they wanted $3 billion and didn't want to sell.

"I couldn't and didn't buy this company and the rest is history," Semel said, adding that it was also fortuitous because that harkened the birth of the search-advertising business.

However dramatic this is, it is not a new play. Jim Barksdale, CEO of Netscape, was said of missing the opportunity of buying Yahoo for $nM back in 1995(?) when Netscape gave the most popular search engines of the day free access to the Search button in the Netscape Navigator. Alledgedly Barksdale didn't want to compete with partners.

History repeats itself in a peculiar way. Are we so fundamentally different than the time of Solomon (~3000 years ago)?

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

In Need of a Good Collaboration Tool

We all know email is currently the king of collaboration tools. Not that it's good at it but it's prevalent and familiar. Isaac Garcia followed up his The Good in Email post with The Bad in Email. His company makes a collaboration tool called Central Desktop. I checked it out briefly and unfortunately it didn't pass my 2-second first impression test. Here is the screenshot of right after you login.

As you can see, it's way too busy. Everything inside one workspace is seen here. I support a group of non-techie users. Confluence, which is a pretty good wiki product, is almost usable to this group. Central Desktop will not have a good chance here. Wiki's per page information unit is much more usable than per work space. I hope they continue to climb quickly on the usability ladder.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Want to Become of Power User of Google Calendar?

Here are some tips for you, thanks to Douglas Bowman.