Posted by: Diabolic Preacher | November 9, 2005

cool technology that’s open for you to screw with

The two neat things i got from the web, album shaper and yubnub. First one being an open source project (and a damn cool one at that) and the second one being a web application are described as follows : –

  • Album Shaper:This was the discovery of goalinks. Soon after getting the link, felt like trying it out. The homepage promised a number of cool features. Thanks to the fast connection in the lab, I downloaded a copy of it. Initially it looks just so dumb simple, but when you take a look at the web albums that it can create (my favorite being the wordpress lookalike) in pure html, you wonder how so much is given off for free. besides it can annotate image, rotate images and apply filters like b/w, sepia, etc. At all stages previews are available for half the image so comparison can be done. fn had a problem finding out how to annotate the images. well once you name your album and collection and add photos to the collection, just hover your mouse over the thumbnail of the image in the collection and you’ll see a blue i (like an info button), click that and the image wonderfully zooms up front to give you space to enter your caption. a lot of cool animations have been done neatly.
    even the help system is compact and context sensitive. i.e it expands only when you click further thru the submenus. so it’s not a huge manual, that first scares off the beginner and secondly makes it too cumbersome to find what is needed. Best thing about being open source is that it reads xml files which is open standard for storing structured data. Moreover given the fact that most free web hosting services give only html hosting, this is the best way to share you albums with the world. Compared to picasa, which obviously has an upper hand in being able to watch for folders and add images itself and the google’s powerful search feature with labels, this utility does a fair job when it comes to exporting web albums, and a bit of touch ups like cropping rotating and adjusting the color and brightness levels….still got to explore more.
  • YubNub: This is a RoR project done for the 2005 “Rails Day” 24-hour programming contest by Jonathan Aquino. Simply put it’s a command line for the web. Command line? aren’t we already so sick of commands? well this is an example showing how web applications are becoming more and more instantaneous in their responses, so as to be almost be as usable as their desktop counterparts. think mail, think maps, think value converters, think search, think and you’ll prolly say the desktop ones are better coz they are more responsive, but so is the web slowly becoming with technologies like AJAX and RoR. For an idea of how it is helpful, just visit the site and try out the commands given. Best thing is you could create some new ones as well. For those who use the Quick Searches keywords like dict, slang, wp, etc. in firefox will have an almost perfect idea about what this web app is all about. ever tried customizing firefox on ur home pc with loads of quick search keywords, only to find you are mostly at work where again it’s the default config’s. this is where web apps like this come in handy. your settings move with you….lots to explore on this site

Finally I’d like to wish the very best to the authors of each of these fantastic projects and thank them for the great time i am having using them. Phew!! that was my bestest effort to be nicey nicey. hehehehehe….nah j/k
check out the sites now.


  1. Hi pintoo – thanks for the YubNub mention! The multiple-computer issue — that’s exactly the problem I was trying to solve.

    • ain’t i good!

      so i did pinpoint the problem u were trying to solve…..maybe particularly i was facing the exact problem moving between home and university. i used to have mismatched rss feedlist, so now i use service…was hating that i’d to reconfig the shortcuts on each copy of firefox on each machine that i happened to log onto. another way cud be to use portable firefox but what if someone doesn’t use firefox.

      one question about social web sites like yours……how do u get so much space that you give users the freedom to create and add content as much as they can. few years back we were only a passive audience. are technologies coming up to decrease website sizes or are the hosting plans becoming cheaper without deteriorating?

      best of luck for future versions and contests.

      • Re: ain’t i good!

        Hi pintoo – good question about space! Actually each Yubnub command doesn’t take up much space (1 database row), so there’s room for thousands of commands (I think my webhost gives me 300 MB of space or something like that).

      • Re: ain’t i good!

        that means databases help in generating useful (dynamic and interactive) websites without using up a lot of space.

        should be one good point to talk about when making people understand the usefulness of database driven websites and the open source solutions to implement them.

        it’s really nice to be able to interact with u and glad u found my journal entry worth commenting on.

        it’s just one of my few feverish attempts at writing for the public. 🙂

        have a nice day

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