Minneapolis Central Library Preview and Google

New central library atriumAfter attending a presentation by Google about Google Earth, Google Books, and Google Scholar and came away with some very interesting back stories of each of these and a bit on insight on where they may be headed. While the presentations were interesting, the chance to get into the new Minneapolis Central Library was an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. The few photos I took don’t do it justice. It is a beautiful building and is going to be a great resource for many, many Minnesota residents. You can read more on the library here.

Google Calendar launches, is Google Office next?

I have put the new Google Calendar app through its paces and like many people, have found many things to like (invite features are looking good. I think evite is in trouble and Skobee is likely DOA) and some to dislike (still very buggy with refreshing itself after certain actions and there are some issues with duplicating entries for the same shared event). The purpose of this post, however, isn’t really about those things. It isn’t really even about Google Calendar. It is about what’s next for Google and the glimpse they have given us within this new application.

It is obvious that they will soon integrate their calendar and mail apps. My thought is, though, that they will not stop there. I think the time is ripe for them to unleash their first version of an integrate office style suite containing search, mail, calendaring, and word processing. I mocked up some screens as to what I think it may look like when it comes, posted them as a Flickr set and added notes to them as well. Here are some thumbnails:

  • Google Search as part of the Google Office Suite
  • Google Mail as part of the Google Office Suite
  • Google Calendar as part of the
  • Google Writer as part of the Google Office Suite

Google Local-Pedia

Google Local should allow users to enter their own locations into the Google Local databases. There have been plenty of times when I know of a great restaurant being left out of the listings and I think plenty of people would add info to this service. Google need look no further than Wikipedia to see that such a system can work and work with very few errors and flaws. Is there more room for exploitation in Google Local (changing competitor’s info, etc)? Perhaps. But the benefits of a living system of data continually being updated and checked over has overwhelming advantages. As it stands Google Local hardly returns any useful results in the cities I live (St. Paul, Minneapolis) and what’s worse, often returns inaccurate results.

Mundane post title here

WWKCD – What would Kirk Cameron do?

  • Patent Room is a very neat site showcasing drawings submitted with patent applications of the 20s, 30s, 40s and 50s.
  • I really need very little reason to post a link about Daniel Quinn’s novel Ishmael Jason’s post/mini review of it seems like reason enough. I have been thinking more and more about these issues lately. These things go in cycles.
  • Flash + Evangelical Christianity + Kirk Cameron = A maddening desire to kill
  • Nice CSS dropshadow technique that doesn’t use CSS hacks or javascript.
  • If you saw any of the following: Hollow Man, Vertical Limit, A Knight’s Tale, The Animal, or The Patriot in a theater you may be entitled to your money back (pdf). Looks as though Sony used a made-up film critic named: David Manning to hype those films. God, if I could just get the same deal for: American Psycho, Blade, Congo, The Haunting, Malibu’s Most Wanted, and Mr. Deeds.
  • Snopes’ list of unanswerable questions they have received that have a sense of urgency to them. Some favorites include mention of: Cat’s eating a dead person’s face off, hickies, penguin eggs, bananas, witches, and Corona among many other bizarre requests. Some of the requests however really give Snopes a lot of credit. Here is my favorite:

    if anyone understands what im (sic). saying please e-mail me at this e-mail adress (sic). does anyone here bilieve (sic) that there are aliens in other planets? who really made us is there really a god? im not saying there isnt (sic). but who made god? seriously please answer back at me

  • Ever wanted to compare Google Maps and Microsoft Virtual Earth side-by-side?
  • Atheist. Agnostic. Thanks to the writings of Kurt Vonnegut, I now have a new label to use when describing my views: Humanist

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