Month: May 2005

Redhead Population Falling

Saw this article today that talks about how the population of natural redheads is dwindling and may become extinct by the year 2100, based on research conducted by the Oxford Hair Foundation (whoever they are). According to Oxford, only 4% of the World’s population has red hair (known fact) and since the gene is recessive, it is diluted if carriers produce children with people who have the brown hair dominant gene.

As a redheaded male, I think the position taken by this research group is a bit extreme but not outside the realm of possibility. For my part, I have contributed to the redhead population by bringing my daughter Rebecca and her beautiful red hair into the world.

Refreshing

I’m in the process of refreshing the site, so things may be a bit askew here and there. The site has been in desperate need of a facelift for a while as the snowflakes were getting a little old and the weather is getting much nicer. For starters, I have changed the header to be a bit lighter and introduced a darker background of the site pages. This will make the main area “pop” a bit more. The one area I’m not sure what to do with is the “Sidebar” on the right hand side of the page, where my RSS feeds and other links are located. I’ve been looking around at how others in the blogosphere handle these areas and hopefully something will inspire me. So in the meantime, please bear with the changes and inconsistencies that will be popping up around the site.

Clutter on Google

In a very interesting move, Google is now indicating if you are logged in when you are on their homepage (see red box in image above). This is a very interesting move in that it is taking them one deep step closer to “portal” land. But I think what is more interesting is how their homepage is, relatively speaking (of course), getting more cluttered now that there are several new services they are exposing on the homepage.

For the longest time, they have stayed true to their original simple design, and that has been a key factor in their growth. However, with all the new services they are launching and testing out via Google Labs for example, I think they may be challenged to keep the homepage uncluttered and focused on search while still giving equal exposure to new products such as Gmail, Google Maps and others. As the homepage stands now, I think its getting messy and looking a little amature-ish.

What is more interresting is when you look at the overall market that includes Yahoo, AOL, and now Google. Yahoo has always been the leader in the market and they have evolved from just an Web based service to one that includes several software applications that extend the Yahoo experience to the desktop. AOL started as a software application on the desktop that extended to the Internet. Now, they are going to focus more on Internet/Web based services while still offering the desktop software applications (AOL Client, AIM, etc.). And now Google is doing the same thing, with desktop applications such as Desktop Search, Gmail Notifier, etc. It seems that all of these online services are meeting at the desktop in a war to control how users access different services. And I have not even mentioned Microsoft, who still own the desktop but have been awful quiet recently.

It will be interesting to see how they evolve the homepage to bring forward the new features they are launching without detracting from their core Search product.

Update: In another interesting move, Google introduced a personalized homepage which pretty much signifies that they have jumped into the portal pool with both feet.