Sunday, 15 January 2006

Mousetrap - 36

...but were afraid to ask
Webopedia, TechWeb, and Whatis?com
Bookmark these if you're dealing with information technology on a regular basis - and who isn't?. Easy search options on the first two: just enter a term to get a simple definition, examples and related links. Or search the entire database, or narrow in on a particular area if you know to some extent what you're looking for. I prefer Webopedia, not just because I've used it longer, but because there's less clutter in the results, and the advertising is less intrusive. Plus a Quick Reference section on some key areas which I find very useful. Whatis?com operates differently. Presenting you only with a series of links. But I’m told it’s still beloved of the web’s thought leaders and early adopters because it has been around a long time.

Die, thought leader, die!
Buzzword Hell
All those words that you hear so many times that you could throw up if you saw them on another slick marketing presentation? Send them here. And while you’re here, vote to condemn one of the words already on the list. The more votes, the lower they sink into the nine circles of hell. No special effects and bells and whistles, I must warn you. Just the satisfaction of being able to sound off about your pet peeves, and perhaps, watching in glee as a words sinks down, down, down.

Be very afraid
Bullshit generator
If you find the previous site fun, this can give you more jollies. Or maybe just provide you with fodder for the nine circles. It lists three columns of jargon. Hit the button, and it randomly picks a word from each column, and generates a phrase for you. Try slipping them into your next presentation and see if anyone notices. Scary part? Like me, you probably know people who spout this kind of stuff without needing the generator.

Terms of Attachment
A little bonus for you. Perhaps not much use to Gmail users, who have all that search expertise at their fingertips. Definitely useful if you send and receive many large attachments. POP3- or IMAP-friendly, it lets you store and access any type of file remotely, in any format using your current e-mail account, for yourself, or to share with others.


This week's blog

Of, For and By the blogs
I have mixed feelings about this. To me, blogs – and the web – are all about breaking down arbitrary borders, and redrawing those borders in the cyberworld seems kinda retrograde. Anyway, I’ll ignore my biases, because it does give you a great window into at least a section of the Indian blogosphere. This year, some needlessly complicated nomination procedures and undefined categories created the kind of controversy bloggers love. By the time you read this, the organisers promise that that votes will be tallied, and you’ll get to see the 2005 winners. Even if that hasn’t happened, you still get to see some interesting blogs. Or, at least, some free entertainment in the comments sections.

Reader suggestions welcome, and will be acknowledged. Go to for past columns, and to comment, or mail The writer blogs at

Published in the Times of India, Mumbai edition, 15th January, 2006.

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1 comment:

Jabberwock said...

oh damn! just finished writing something very similar about Blog Awards for my column. I anoint thee Preemptive Plagiarist!