Monday, August 28, 2006

Melding of WebTop Offices with DeskTop Offices?

Nope, not yet at least. I remember hearing about how webapps would take over the world during the dot bomb years, it sounded kinda like commie talk to me (Take my software apps away from me? Never!) but years later I now view it as complementing destop apps, not replacing them. I just finished reading a bit about the AJAXy Office and different ajax/web applications available out there. Google pretty much cleaned house, not surprising but they might have glazed over some other webapps that might have google beat.

Anyway, these AJAX apps are fine, and for collaborative working i agree with the AJAX Office author, desktop apps can't touch the web apps but the superiority stops there. These webapps ( Web Applications) have a ways to go, but to me thats not a problem, i would prefer a streamlined (possibly minimal) program that i could access from anywhere *IF* i could seamlessly use the documents through my desktop app. The examples that come to mind are syncing web calendars with outlook/thunderbird or my PDA/smartphone, or editing my web doc from a webapp or a desktop app without having to download/upload the doc/spreadsheet. I could see Microsoft doing something like this with office and their MS Live site, or niftier yet, Open Office working like this, very nice. oh well, for me, the big thing is a nice calendaring app (think Google Calendar meets 30 Boxes) that would sync with Outlook and my PDA, this would be *veeery* useful for me.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Biodiesel/Ethanol & BioFuels in General

I just finished reading yet another article about the caveats of biofuels this one dealing with the water required.

No one seems to get it.

I had always thought alternative fuels involved forward thinkers by default, apparently I was wrong. For things like " Biodiesel" people are talking about growing more soybeans, and for Ethanol growing more Corn (or sugarcane, trees, sugar beets, etc.) all of which are very short sighted means of implementing otherwise wonderful technologies.

I see energy potential everywhere, in sewage treatment/animal production and methane ( biogas), to plant waste (even including things like the paper napkins your throw away) and ethanol production, to Biodiesel and used oils (from within the food industry to animal processing to oils that could be extracted from waste products). The idea of growing more soybeans (which would certainly further strain the worlds already strained water supplies) for Biodiesel or more corn etc for ethanol when there is soooo much plant waste tossed away daily, it all seems ludicrous to me.

*OF*COURSE* growing more soybeans and corn is the easiest/cheapest route (or so many say) but those are very very shortsighted ways of thinking about it. More research needs to be done regarding the production of energy from energy rich waste that people produce daily. I am not saying we can't grow any crops for energy production but there is so much waste that should be tapped before we bother growing more crops.