First Look at Microsoft’s Tafiti search engine

2 09 2007

Microsoft has released a new showcase of its Silverlight web development frameworks, a graphical search engine called Tafiti. Tafiti, which means “do research” in Swahili, is an experimental frontend to Microsoft’s Live Search engine. It presents search options in three panes on the screen: the left pane is for entering search queries and switching between image, RSS, Web, and News, the middle pane contains the search results, and the right pane is used to “dock” results using drag-and-drop for looking at later.

To run the Tafiti web application, you must first download and install Silverlight. Silverlight runs on Windows XP SP2 or Windows Vista and Mac OS X 10.4.8 or higher. A Linux version of Silverlight is being worked on by Mono developer Miguel de Icaza but is not yet available.

The installation is a one-time-only affair, with the default setting to update Silverlight automatically in the background when new releases come out—a good thing since the Silverlight frameworks themselves are still in beta. Once installed, a browser restart is required, and then the Tafiti site will run. Tafiti runs on Internet Explorer 6 or 7, Firefox 2.x, and Safari 2.x, but it will not work on Opera or the new Safari 3 beta. I had some problems with Tafiti not rendering search results on Firefox 2.0.0.6, but others have reported no difficulties. Read the rest of this entry »

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MyLiveSearch public release announced

20 08 2007

MyLiveSearchMyLiveSearch has officially announced its public release which is scheduled to be on August 29. MyLiveSearch, which claims to be the world’s first live search engine, is the brainchild of software developer Rob Gabriel.

Google’s search engine works by building a vast index of web pages, via automated “spiders” that crawl through billions of web pages a year. However this represents only a fraction of the enormous, sprawling internet, and the index can never be entirely up to date.

Yahoo! search and Microsoft’s Live search work the same way.

MyLiveSearch is fundamentally different. It works through a small browser plug-in. The search terms are put through Google, or other indexed search databases, but those results are treated as “starting points” alongside the user’s bookmarks and other popular web hubs.

From there, the live search takes over, crawling through hundreds of web pages connected to those starting points in search of more information relevant to the search.

Mr Gabriel says the results come back in seconds, and are almost always richer, more detailed and more useful than a standard, index-based search.






Geni – We Are All Related

15 08 2007

Geni’s premise is very simple. We are all related. This idea, while theoretically feasible, has resulted in a family tree website where you map your family tree visually. If you’ve tried to create a family tree earlier – either on paper or in MS Word or MS Excel – you would have realized how painfully-difficult and error-prone it is.

Geni hits that exact problem on the head, and all you need to do is follow the visual clues to create your own family tree. What’s more, you can invite all your relatives via e-mail to join the tree. And your relatives can in turn invite their relatives to join the tree – and pretty soon you realize that your family is way bigger than you thought it possible. The data entry can be kept to a minimum – name, email address and relationship to another person in your tree – if you feel this is the way to go, or you can fill in as much detail as you wish. You can add your picture (so far-flung relatives will finally know what you look like).





InviteShare.com – Are you risking too much to get an invite?

14 08 2007

Its a great concept! A site where people can share invites for different web services which are invite-based only. Instead of searching for invites on the web or waiting for an invite you requested from that particular site, you can go to InviteShare.com and request an invite, and usually you will soon be invited by one of the users.

But the downside is that there is no provision to protect the privacy of users. Once you request an invite, your email address will be visible to anyone who holds an account at the site. Now imagine what happens if a spammer gets hands on your email address. In fact, people have reported an increase in spam in their inboxes after they signed up at InviteShare. Well, every good thing has its price. So are you going to request an invite again at InviteShare?





I iGoogle…Do you?

3 08 2007

Not too long ago, iGoogle was better known as Google Personalized Homepage. iGoogle lets you create a customised homepage that you can set as your browser’s default page with all you want to see when you fire it up.

Here are a few things you can do with your iGoogle page:

Change The Theme

Google also gives you with a nice bunch of themes to choose from. Click on the “Select theme” link. Choose one of the themes and click Save. And remember, these themes are not just plain-old-colour-change themes. Most of the themes are dynamic, that means they change as according to the time of day at your location.

Add Gadgets

Familiar with widgets? Google calls them Gadgets. There are hundreds of gadgets in several categories. Click on Add Stuff, find the gadget you like and click Add it now. The gadget will be added your homepage.

Make Your Own Gadgets
Google gives you a base to start off with your own little Gadgets. To add your own Gadgets, click on Add Stuff. Then, click on “My Community”. On the next page click “Write your own gadget”. You will come to a page with an option to choose between some seven presets.

Click on a preset suitable for the Gadget you’re planning on making. Enter the information for that Gadget and click on “Preview gadget” to get an idea of what it will look like. If you’re pleased with the results, click on “Create gadget”. Read the rest of this entry »





ONLINE STORAGE: 80+ File Hosting and Sharing Sites

29 07 2007

From sending one document to backing up an entire business, data storage is the key to everything nowadays. Seeing this, Mashable has  put together a list of more than 80 of the leading file hosting services, many of which are completely free.

Check them out here.





Pownce invites for sale on EBay!

7 07 2007

Yes, you read that right! Pownce invites are for sale on EBay. You can bid ‘em up, or Buy it Now for $9.95 (who pays $10 for a free service?)Pownce

Of course, you certainly don’t have to pay: just join this Pownce invites thread and an iHacking reader will get one sent to you ASAP.

Happy Powncing! 🙂