Zoundry Raven: A Blog Client

Hi there.

This is my very first post from a stunning tiny – okay, not so tiny – tool named Zoundry Raven.

System Tray

One cool feature of this program is that it lets you minimize it to your system tray, and post to your blog directly from there.

tray icon

Media Storage

Right now, I am trying its different features. It’s really cool and even allows you upload your post attachments to a multitude of different upload repositories – like Flickr. It also allows you to define your very own FTP server.

Spell Checking

Also, it has a native spell checker. You only have to select your desired language – if available – and allow it to download the dictionary.

Offline Content

It can manage your posts very well, and also builds a tag cloud based on your posts. While still in beta, it shows a promise of becoming a force to be reckoned with.

Rich Toolset

It also has a toolbar which makes it very much suitable for writing to WordPress weblogs.

Image Editing

It also allows you to seamlessly create thumbnails for any image you insert. A lightbox can be set to be automatically inserted into your posts for these images – however as I already have a lightbox plug-in installed for my blog, I have not put this feature into test.

Here is a preview of its automatic thumbnails:

XHTML Editor

In the XHTML tab at bottom of the screen, you find yourself face-to-face with a neat editor, which in addition to source code highlighting, features an HTML code completion toolbox.

What it lacks …

What it lacks right now is the possibility of writing an excerpt for your post. Also, sometimes it stills shows you that it is still in beta. For example, if your connection goes jerky while it is uploading a picture, it will not complaint, it only adds a messy URL to your images source attribute.

Also, when you send a task to the background, you won’t have it in sight any more, and to make sure it has finished without problems, you have to use the application’s main menu. In this regard, I would prefer something like what Eclipse does with it’s background tasks.

What’s more, as a tool designed for hardcore writers, it should put more use into the keyboard. I really don’t know why these UI engineers are so afraid of giving out a lot of shortcut keys.

Conclusion

Otherwise, I can say I am pretty excited to be posting to my blog like this. However, one thing I’m a little concerned about is the subtle way in which the homepage states the possibility of this utility becoming a shareware. On the "Software" section on Zoundry’s website you can read:

Raven (new and still free!)

It might be a misunderstanding on my part, but hey, I’m kind of paranoid about this stuff!

PS: After restarting the computer, something rather strange happened. Raven wouldn’t start and I had to reinstall it. Right now I’m not inclined to reboot again just to check if this is a real bug or not, but if I find it to happen again, I’ll report the incident here.

Data Structures and CLRS

From now on, as I am studying the book "Introduction to Algorithms" by Thomas M. Cormen et al for our Data Structures course, I’ll be writing what I think is interesting about the topic.
Data Structures is a course concerning multiple topics. First of all, it introduces the means with which one can measure an algorithm’s efficiency and also compare two algorithms. Secondly, it discusses several algorithms. Lastly, it introduces multiple commonly used data structures to store, process, and use data.
Although the book has a third edition, since I have the 2nd edition, I will be using that as a reference instead.
Well, I guess that’s all for now.


Note: This book is also known as CLRS, which stands for the first letters of all the authors’ last names (Cormen, Leiserson, Rivest, and Stein). For the books multiple homepages on MIT, you could click here.

To Students and Lectures: I have a rather well-formed PDF format of the Text Book, the Instructor Manual, and the Solutions which are actual text-formatted eBooks with PDF tags and all. If you are in need of a copy, and only if you have bought an original copy of the text-book or you don’t have in any way access to a store that will sell you a copy, leave a comment stating your email address. Please understand that I might not be able to reply as quickly as you might wish. Also, please note that asking for a copy of the mentioned implies that you understand and are aware of your local copyright laws.

Google to become the new phone company?

Seriously. Does one really need to conquer all fronts to become satisfied?

I don’t know, but I don’t think I will be using this one from you, Google.

Have you people ever seriously thought about the consequences of giving so much information about yourself to a single company? Google can monitor my blog posts, it can gather information about my group activities, it saves a history of my searches, it has a list of my friends and associates using Orkut, it archives my personal conversations with my friends, it holds my documents on its servers, and it keeps track of my interests over web by its RSS service. I’m not saying everybody does all that with Google, I’m talking about those Google geeks who are obsessed with everything provided by Google.

Well, I’m not a pessimist and I don’t propose that Google actually spies on people. I’m just saying that with so much information available to one, one would be a fool to not use it. Again, mark what I’m saying, I’m not saying that Google uses this information in a dishonest way or is involved in any underhanded business. What I’m trying to say is that it isn’t a very good idea to keep all your eggs in one basket, that’s all.

All said and done, here is a much more positive article on the subject of Google’s probable phone service: Google Poised to Become Your Phone Company

Back to my Vaio Z

Finally, I got my Vaio Z laptop back. And now, it’s even better than before, since I can now adjust the resolution to as high as 1600×900. God! I missed my FullHD LED so much, I don’t know how to celebrate the occasion.
I once again tried to install the newest Ubuntu distro on it, without success. I followed the instructions given in the Launchpad Vaio Z series page, but to no avail. Alas, it seems I have to wait and see if the next release will run satisfactorily over my laptop.
I mean, yeah, it does run, and it does support both my graphic cards, and it does look good, but man, I want a great OS over my great machine. And I know that Windows is far from great, but still, since everything on it works as it should, and I can very nearly claim that I can use my machine up to its full capacity under Windows Vista, I’ll wait for now, and will not install an Ubuntu Desktop on it.