Has Facebook got it right by changing ‘fans’ to ‘like’ ?

One of the major but expected changes in Facebook has been that there are no Facebook page fans. A fan is converted into a ‘Like’ and that has started a debate amongst Facebook users if doing away with ‘fans’ was the right thing to do.

It has been explained in numerous debates that Facebook prefers us using ‘Like‘ button instead of ‘Become a Fan’ as people are more likely to click on Like than any other option given.

This makes perfect sense of Facebook to start really working on earning revenues from their users.

Pros and Cons of Like Button

  • I think for user owned pages like Facebooknol’s Facebook page we might not really mind the ‘Like button‘ as it will probably get us more followers.
  • When it comes to community user owned page like lets say the community page of a famous book, musician or author then people might prefer to be fans rather than having a ‘Like Button’

I think like previous arguments against changes with Facebook re-designs, this negative vibe to the Like button instead of Fan Pages will also die a natural death.

As long as Facebook has a simple interface that works and allows people to share things easily with their friends and also allow virtual farms and gangsters with Framville and Mafia Wars, people will still flock to Facebook in their millions everyday.

So what is your opinion on the new Like Button for Facebook Pages? Do drop in your comments.

5 Great services to create your own wikis

Wikipedia has changed the way information is dispersed on the internet. The idea of having everyone in the world adding to a online encyclopedia which covered everything caught up fast and today Wikipedia has an article on almost everything and anyone.

But Wikis are very important even when it comes to small projects or companies. Many projects now a days have Wikis onlines so if a new member joins up, they can pick up things very quickly.

Here are 5 websites which will help you create your own wikis for free.

#1. Wiki Spaces

  • Wikispaces Basic version allows you to create Wikis with unlimited pages with unlimited users.
  • Allows standard features like a WYSIWYG editor and also media embedding.
  • Allows you to create RSS feeds and also have discussion areas.

#2. dooWikis

  • Doo Wikis is a website which allows you to create free online wikis which are public. This is great for public communities.
  • Doo Wikis also allows protection of the public wiki by creating a password for people to update the Wikis.

#3. Zoho Wiki

  • Zoho Wikis allows creating 2 wikis for free with unlimited users and unlimited updates.
  • It allows creating RSS and Atom feeds along with storage space of 50 MB.

#4. Intodit

  • Intodit is a great way to create wikis and invite friends and collaborators through their Email ids.
  • It also allows you to create new pages with a WYSIWYG editor which supports embedding.
  • You can read a complete review of intodit on Devils’ Workshop.

#5. Alex Knowledge Base

  • Alex Knowledge Base is not exactly a wiki but can be created on your own computer to notate and create articles which you want to refer to.
  • This is very handy for developers and people joining new project as it is not as widely editable like wikis but quite comprehensive.
  • Read more about Alex Knowledge Base.

That completes the list of 5 websites or services with which you can create your own Wikis. These are all free to create and most are perfect to use for personal projects or small teams.

Do drop in your comments to let me know what you think about creating your own wikis and share with us any other services you know about.

Mashpedia: A dynamic real time encylopedia

Most times when we look up some specific information about a very large company or place, the best place seems to be Wikipedia. But Wikipedia is updated quite frequently but the content in Wikipedia is very definition oriented. That means we get a very basic idea of something we are researching. I came across this website called Mashpedia which is really useful to carry out some research as it collects and collates information very dynamically in real time.

About Mashpedia

  • Once you search for a subject on Mashpedia it gives you a great deal of information. The first thing you will notice is the Wikipedia article on it. It will be a abridged or summarized version of the article on Wikipedia.
  • But the real dirt comes from a host of other real-time links like latest trending tweets, links to You Tube videos, relative image links and also Flickr links.
  • It also shares with you relevant latest articles about the subject you are researching from Digg and other Blog websites.
  • Links to latest news about the same subject also ensures a great deal of information on something you are looking up without really needing to go through endless search results on Google or deal with the bland info given in Wikipedia.

Do try out Mashpedia and let me know what your views are. I think it takes the idea of Wikis a little further and makes it more real-time which is a boon for looking up current information on just about anything.

YouTube is 5 years old: Watch the first video uploaded on YouTube

You Tube has turned five years old. It all started on 23rd April 2005 when the first You Tube video was loaded. It was a innocuous video upload called ‘Me at the Zoo’. The website URL was registered in January 2005 but development started over the months and first video uploaded was on 23rd April of the same year. The official launch of You Tube was in October 2005.

Some interesting statistics of You Tube over the last 5 years

  • You Tube after its official launch had over 65,000 videos being uploaded and over 100 millions video views every day by June 2006.
  • You Tube consumed more bandwidth alone in 2007 than the entire Internet did for the year 2000.
  • When Google bought You Tube in 20o6 October it was valued at 1.65 $ Billion.
  • Today You Tube widely gets 1 billion views per day!

Below is the first video uploaded to You Tube. The video where it all started.

Here is wishing You Tube a happy birthday. Do share your favorite You Tube moment with us through your comments.

Facebook introduces community pages

Facebook pages are very useful for creating communities but usually they are owned or created and maintained by one person or mutliple admins but the control or ownership of the page is limited. This is fine when it comes to a company or a brand that needs such controls but what about things that are hobbies like reading books, cooking, photography?

The above image is of the community page of Lord of the Rings book. If you have added me as a Facebook friend and look up my info, you will see one of my favorite books is Lord of the Rings and it is hyper linked to this Community Page.

Unlike other Facebook pages there are no owner or admin but all people who have Lord of the Rings as their favorite book will be have access to its wall messages and also rights to post something to the community.

This is a great way to create organic communities which will truly get together perfect strangers with similar interests discussing useful things.

The default information of such community pages is taken from Wikipedia and it is still a beta product so expect some glitches.

Let me know if you like the idea of building dynamic communities with mass ownership rather than focused ownership and administration? Do drop in your comments.

Compare the speed at which You Tube videos are streamed by your ISP

You Tube is a service which was wholly reliant on hi-speed internet connectivity. You Tube started about five years ago when most western countries had broadband easily available. Now hi-speed internet access is readily available around the globe and that has seen You Tube grow exponentially.

But what about your ISP? How fast do videos stream on your browser thanks to your ISP. I sure would like to compare the speed and see where I stand regarding other Internet Service Providers around.

You Tube has a tool called My Speed which actually allows you to check and compare speed of You Tube videos streaming on your connection.

About You Tube Video Speed History

  • When I used it on my computer it showed Video Speed comparison in the last month. Here my ISP is way below what is average speed for Pune (city where I reside), India and Global speed.
  • It is useful to note that most time click on a Video and wait till it gets completely stream. While doing so I surf around and check websites. This be slowing down the video streaming speed and I might not get an accurate picture.
  • I was out of town for a few days in the time it checked for speed variation and my ISP had changed along with City so this might have also had its effect.

So try out You Tube Video Speed History for yourself and compare the speed at with You Tube is streamed over your Internet connection. This is not a speed test for the internet but only for You Tube. You might also want to read up how India compare to the world when it comes to broadband internet.

Free PDF Converter: Convert your Word and Excel files to PDF

Working with files is always tedious and it is a little disconcerting to not be able to convert your Word Documents or Excel sheets into PDF format. Obviously most people love PDF documents when it comes to reading data rather than handling it.

Free PDF convert is one such service which allows your to convert different types of files into PDF format.

About Free PDF Converter

  • This website is quite handy as it support many file types. I can convert PPT, JPEG, Excel sheets, Lotus Sheets and Word Documents into PDF files. It supports 68 files formats to date.
  • It also has a reverse file converter where you can convert PDF file into an Excel file. 🙂
  • While looking up services online I always feel happy about websites where I do not have to register or sign-up and this web service needs no sign-up either.

I like this site for its versatility regarding the types of File Formats it can handle. If you liked this serivice you might like to read up on how to convert PDF files to Word Doc, HTML and Txt format. Also there is a similar service from Comet Docs for converting Excel and Word files to PDF.

Do let me know your view by dropping in your comments. 🙂

Note: Thanks to John71 for the tip.

Will docs.com be the Google Docs killer?

Docs.com is a portal where you can upload documents online. This portal has been promoted by Microsoft and I can see it as a real looming threat to Google Docs. Docs.com allows you to upload and share documents with friends over the internet pretty much in a similar way to Google Docs. At the moment you can register and sign up to be in the waiting list for using Docs.com.

Why Google Docs could be in trouble?

There are two simple reasons why Google Docs could be facing serious competition from Docs.com

  1. Google Docs is still not as widely used as Microsoft Office Documents. The prime selling point of Microsoft is Excel and Word documents which still are hugely popular compared to Google Docs alternatives.
  2. Google had one advantage of its huge user base being already there with Gmail which would automatically transfer over to Google Docs. This base was lacking for Microsoft as you know Hotmail and MSN users are dwindling over the years. Docs.com allows you to sign-in with your Facebook account and this could be crucial and I am sure Microsoft will develop a application for Facebook where you can soon exchange word, excel and other office files with your Facebook contacts.

Why cloud based Documents are important?

  • Cloud storage of documents are very important because it means you store something online and can access it from any computer with a internet connection. This is the obvious advantage but there are more advantages like sharing and collaborating with teams with the same document.
  • Cloud based storage of Documents is extremely crucial for Google as it develops its Chrome OS further. If Docs.com kills Google Documents, then Chrome OS project will die next. So Microsoft has got it right this time at least when it comes to identifying where they need to shore up. But will they be able to deliver.

I tried using Open Office a few times and I found it very tedious. I preferred to stick to Google Docs. But then I do not own Microsoft Office suite like most Windows users. I am sure most people having Excel and Word on their computers would want to store and share documents without changing the file formats.

So what do you think about Docs.com? Will it be the Google Docs killer? Do let me know through your comments.

Find how much time you spend on a website while using Chrome

I have written a lot about Chrome as a great browser previously and I like it for its speed and simplicity. No toolbar or too many icons. All neatly tucked in, Chrome is my favorite browser. This means I end up doing my internet surfing with Chrome. Most times I use Facebook, Email and Reader through Chrome so I thought it would be nice to track how much time I spend on which website to give me a better idea of my productivity while online.

With a Chrome extension which I came across on Lifehacker, called RescueTime you can monitor the time you spend on all websites with while using the Chrome browser.

About Rescue Time

  • This extension monitors all usage on Chrome browser and gives you the amount of time you spend on websites and also categorized websites. Some of these categories are Social Networking, Emai etc.
  • I liked the graphical representation of the data as it gives a clear and simple snap shot of your productivity while you are online.
  • The icon appears on the right hand top corner next to the address bar of Chrome. Clicking on it can give you some details of the tracking. Getting a comprehensive reports is good.

I have installed this Rescue Time with Chrome and it will interesting to see results after a couple of days of usage. I like this as it will really give me new insights into how to make better usage of my time online. 😛 I can see this extension being a favorite of mine just like Site Meterz which I use to get stats of websites I visit on Chrome.

Download Rescue Time for Chrome and drop in your comments here to let me know what you liked or disliked about it.

Facebook decides to “Unlike” Facebook Lite

Facebook had a nice lightweight version for Facebook users which was called Facebook Lite. I personally liked it first using it but frankly you might want to access it only if you had dial up. Facebook has announced that they have stopped supporting Facebook Lite and if you visit the http://Lite.Facebook.com address you will be redirected to the normal Facebook.

Here is the message Facebook has on its page.

We have had issues and people commenting on our posts about getting stuck on Facebook Lite once they visited that page. I guess not more problems for those readers.

Also I think Facebook Lite was closed down as I think Facebook might launch a Mobile friendly version very soon. Keep reading our updates and we will bring it to you.

So will you miss Facebook Lite or happy that its done and gone away? Do let me know through your comments.