Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Fleck evolution of notecards

On the same run I ran into Wakoopa (see previous blogentry), I ran into Fleck. Now this might be one to watch. In short, Fleck is the evolution of the notecard.

Where we needed hammers, chisels, enormous walls and tons of paint to let our friends know we saw a bunch of horses in prehistoric times We had to nail our thoughts to the wall - or door, needing lots of paper, nails and a hammer and risk being burned at the stake in medieval times

At last we got rid of nails and push pins as it is no longer appropriate in our western culture that women have a red spot on their forehead, so we invented sticky notes.

Now Fleck is taking it to the next level. We no longer need to put up reminders on the edges of our screen, we can comment directly on the website that drives us to whichever thought we need to hold.

Here's the Techcrunch website sampled with Fleck's annotation bar and comments.

Here's Flecks own vision:

Fleck.com wants to add a new layer of interactivity to the web. Fleck is inspired on a story written in 1945 by Vannevar Bush and an article titled 'We Are The Web' by Kevin Kelly. Vannevar Bush predicted a machine called the Memex that would allow people to surf from one information page to another. Some people say that Hypertext and the World Wide Web are based on or at least inspired by the Memex.
One thing that
the Memex had and the web doesn't is the ability to add new content to every page it contained. After reading the Wired article by Kevin Kelly we decided to try to add a new level to the web by adding new tools that would allow its users to add information rather than just consuming it.

Fleck allows you to interact with pages on the web just as if it were pages in a magazine. You can save your annotated page for yourself, send it to friends or colleagues or use it in your blog.

You can start using Fleck right now. It's free and what's best: you don't have to install anything on your computer. Try the search box at the top of this page or add Fleck to your browser with a Bookmarklet or Extention.

The easy part, and quite usefull is the option to add your notes on top of a webpages and other people will be able to see your remarks. These notes are freely draggable and you can add bullet points. In the bottom of the screen you'll see the Fleck toolbar which gives you the ability to blog, mail or save history.

The technique we're talking about here is annotation and Fleck isn't the first to walk this path. There's TrailFire, Stickis and Diigo that put up competition. Fleck is easier to use though, and you don't need an account. Last but not least, it's last pluspoint is that it's Dutch ;)

TechCrunch blogger Marshall Kirkpatrick has this to say on Fleck:

I can imagine myself quickly adding questions to pages on a site I’m reviewing and emailing those annotated pages back to a company. They could respond immediately on the page, with no need to download anything or start an account
with the annotation service. I like that. I also like that those collaborators would have a list of all the pages we’ve collaborated on created for them automatically.

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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Second Life, Creationism or Evolution?

Today I read an interesting article about Second Life.

As you'll probably know, Second Life offers its virtual residents to create 3D thing. A whole new virtual world is opening up. In designated areas, socalled Sandboxes, people can practise their building skills and the most bizarre creations appear every day, ranging from "planes, trains and automobiles" to luxurious condo's and bodyparts. Some people say the power to create makes you feel like a god.

The article deals with the theological question: Is Second Life the result of Creationism or of Evolution?
"Somewhere around my third glass of pinot noir, I realized that Rosedale was describing something more interesting: a world where imaginations touch, interact, and create. Pardon me for being dense about this, but I had to see this through my own bio-lenses, and I now realize that Second Life is actually an organism--one that is in the early stages of pure Darwinian evolution.

Full article:

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