Orkut Cute (now at version 8.8.2) has recently added the "boss mode," which basically enables users to hide the software program from their screen (via key command).
Users may want to change the default setting from Shift + A, as you may find it rather irritating with Orkut Cute disappearing and reappearing from view.
I also noticed that the software uploads forums a lot faster than before, and also only displays the updated ones instead of all of the communities at once (which was slightly annoying).
Orkut Cute has come a long way since it first came on the scene, and with its integration with Google Talk seems to have made it a hit within the orkutsphere, especially among Brazilians.
Note: With Google recently adding SMS (in celebration of its third birthday), I wonder if Alexandre Peres (the creator) will consider an SMS service to Orkut Cute as well?
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Orkut Cute (now at version 8.8.2) has recently added the "boss mode," which basically enables users to hide the software program from their screen (via key command).
Monday, January 29, 2007
After blogging about how great it would be for Google to open up Orkut for our mobile phones, it looks like the search engine giant has taken the first steps to making this a reality.
That is if you are Brazilian.
(Official Google Blog) With orkut's new SMS feature, you can scrap your friends, look up their contact information and receive scrap notifications. Now you can send scraps from the bus, bar or bathroom, and your friends can get notified of those scraps when on bicycle, beach or bed. Along with the standard orkut features, we've included a few hidden goodies for the adventurous to find.
This week, orkut SMS will become available to orkut members in Brazil who use Claro as their mobile service provider. When the feature becomes available to you, a message will be displayed when you sign in to your account. We hope to expand soon to other mobile service providers in Brazil and around the globe.
This is both really exciting and depressing at the same time. If anybody from Brazil has screen shots of this, let me know! (as I would be very interested in seeing how this would look on a cell phone)
Note: I wonder when they are going to open this up for American and Indian users?
(Hat Tip: Os Humanos Do Orkut)
On this day three years ago a Googler by the name of Orkut Buyukkokten founded Orkut, Google's bluest social network.
Although Orkut designed Orkut (note: hmm...that sounds weird) for Americans, it ironically became a hit in first Brazil, then India.
Despite missing the American market, Orkut became a thrill for me personally because it allowed me to actually meet people from various cultures, faiths, philosophies, as well as get a better understanding of the world through the eyes of its users.
Happy Birthday Orkut! And congrats to the Google team for hanging in there when nobody knew who you were and for making Orkut a fun place to hang out.
So, when are you guys (and Ellen) finally going to roll out the Jot Spot integration?
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
(Hat Tip: Tech Buzz)
For those of you who have been emailing, scraping, Gtalking, commenting or Skyping me to death about this, there is a new program out there that allows user to send mass scraps to all of their friends on Orkut.
Created by Orkutrix and folks from the Orkut Underground community (the same one Google keeps trying to delete) this GreaseMonkey hack can be a powerful tool in the hands of both friend and foe (think spammer).
Some of my friends have already started to use this, although I give it a couple weeks until Google shuts it down completely as this tool can easily be abused.
You can visit Tech Buzz for instructions on how to download this hack, as well as how to use it.
Note: Perhaps it's a good thing I installed this previous hack. ;-)
Orkut Toolbar was one of the first Orkut hacks that I came across that made life easier "orkuting."
Unfortunately after I upgraded to Firefox 2, I lost the ability to use this tool, although its absence was short lived with hacks like Orkut Scrapper and Orkut Helper filling the void.
It seems however Rahul has taken the time and energy to ressurect this Firefox Add-on, which you can now install over here.
Rahul of Welcome to the Devils Workshop is warning users of a new fake Orkut site that has sprung up online.
The site goes by the address of Orkuft .com (note: intentionally separated, DO NOT visit address while logged into your Google account) whose purpose seems to be stealing users accounts.
A quick Whois.net search reveals that this hacker may reside in Switzerland although the tech address registers from the US.
I'm in the process of forwarding this to Google, and if you have accidentally clicked on the account from either a scrapbook or forum, contact Orkut immediately and change your Google account password ASAP!
If anyone else comes across any other phishing sites, please let all of us know by either posting it on a weblog or commenting here.
(Hat Tip: Sharath)
It looks like users have a new way to fight spam within their scrapbooks, a problem that is occurring all too often within Orkut. Called Tira Spam do Orkut (or It takes off Spam of the Orkut) this nifty program developed by Sergio Abreu will hopefully make all our lives easier online.
Unfortunately I do not have any screen shots of this program in action as Google has taken care of my spam problem (probably because I kept whining about it).
This hack requires GreaseMonkey and Firefox, and you can download the program by visiting this page (or simply click here if you have GreaseMonkey installed).
Note: Adding this to the sidebar underneath Orkut User Tools.
Thursday, January 18, 2007
Despite the fact that Google controls the hosting of the forum (as well as its ultimate powers), that has not stopped one business from actually purchasing admin rights to one very popular forum on Orkut.
(Google Blogoscoped) Floripa, also known as Florianopolis, is the capital city of the state Santa Catarina in Brazil, and there is one Orkut community specifically for Floripa lovers. The community, titled "Eu AMO Floripa!" ("I LOVE Floripa"), assembled over 74,000 members over time. This size made it interesting for marketers - so interesting in fact that the original owner of the community, Bruno Unger, a guy in his mid-twenties, was able to "sell it off" to an agency for roughly $934 (2,000 Brazil reais), as Googlaxy informed me. The agency is now using the moderation rights that were transferred to them to push an event called "Floripa Tem" (a kind of sports/ music/ food/ fun festival to promote the city, if I understand it right).
Although this boils down to roughly USD 79 cents per user, buying a community for under a $1,000 may seem like a good marketing idea, especially if your company is located in either Brazil or India.
But if Bruno Unger could sell his forum to a company that seems to be (IMHO) spamming its members, I wonder if other people could potentially sell their forums out to respective buyers.
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
It looks like Google will be partnering with Indian police officers in order to locate (and prosecute) cyber-criminals by giving them the ability to report offences in a user friendly way.
(WebProNews) According to Google the tool will be easy to use and no special training of the Indian police will be required. The spokesperson also said "This is part of Google continued efforts to collaborate with the authorities, doing so in a way that of course balances users' interests and the need for the proper legal process."
I'm pretty sure Google established something similar in Brazil when child predators began using the forums (which caused Brazil to launch a lawsuit against them).
Although their is always potential for abuse, I am fairly confident that this system will be used to fight crime and not censor certain viewpoints.
One of the cool things I enjoy (that I probably should post more often) while surfing Orkut is that you get to see a lot of unique armature film directors sharing stories via camera.
Over in the Independent Film-makers forum, Gowtham has posted his debuted film and is already receiving some (mostly) constructive comments for his short movie (which you can watch below or on Google Video).
Although I've heard this story before (a long time ago) this is the first time that I've seen it in video format. The film is fairly long (over seven minuets) so you may want to watch this on your lunch break or after work.
Despite the screen being blurry (which is either do to Google Video's format or the camera used in the shooting) the overall message is pretty good, although I won't spoil the ending for those of you who have never heard of this story before.
Improvements to this movie are best summed up by Parvati:
[...] the concept was really gud..maybe u shud work on it again and let the boy's frustration show through a couple of more sequences...also concentrate a bit more on ur camera work..for me personally the transition shot when amar gets a call didn't work...the sound quality is another arena u should pay attention to..but over all a gud fantastic first project- keep up the gud work!!!
Great film Gowtham, and thanks for entertaining all of us (or at least me anyways).
Note: Does anybody know of any other great forums (not filled with spam) where users discuss their film projects?
If finding your friend's profile on Orkut is difficult, then typing it in the address bar is far worse.
Fortunately it seems that Sankar Anand has figured out a quick way to have your friends type in your Orkut profile without having to memorize a 19 digit reference number.
Here are the first several (and then some) steps detailed on Sankar Anand Blog:
- Login to Google Page Creator with Your Google accounts username and password
- Either create a new site or choose the Create Another site from the drop down box available at the top right corner of the page
- The next step is about choosing an address which is going to be the URL of your Orkut profile, so enter the profile name you want for your url basically it should be like this http://yourdesiredname.googlepages.com which will re-direct you to the Orkut profile.
- Say for example you want to use “XXXX” as your profile url then you should enter xxxx in the box provided for choosing an address and click Check Availability to see if the entered name is available or not.
- Select any layout and a starting look because because it has nothing to do with your url.
- Making sure you have entered the desired URL and check if its available or not, then click the Create Site Button.
- Now you have successfully created a site, click the [no title] link in the page name column to make it open.
- There you go, you are ready to edit the page where Google pages allows you to add title and other bla bla things. But you don’t have to touch them just click the [edit html] link at bottom right corner of the page.
If you want to get the java
Update: I wonder if Orkut should consider making our profile name easier to find by using our names (with a short number) instead of a 19 digit random number?
Like instead of http://www.orkut.com/Profile.aspx?uid=xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, how about http://www.orkut.com/Profile.aspx?uid=darnellclayton123 ? What do you guys think?
Update (1/18): Java script it is. Thanks Haochi!
Monday, January 15, 2007
I am currently attempting to resolve the domain "404" issue faced with this blog, otherwise known as the weird duality problem.
Inside Orkut may at times disappear from the world wide web, but it should be accessable from either InsideOrkut.com or www.InsideOrkut.com.
Stay tuned...this could get a little rough.
Update (1/16): This is now working. See my personal blog for details.
(Hat Tip: Googlified)
Breaking away from traditional Google services, it looks like Orkut is starting to show image ads on its domain.
A long time ago Google started displaying text ads, which some users found to be a bit annoying. Although I don't mind ads in general (as they help pay the bills and keep the donut errors away) I am not sure if the ads will blend in very well with the site (which might mean a revenue drop).
I think if Google allowed users to adjust their Orkut homepage, then such changes would be welcome. Although they may work well for blogs, image ads on the baby blue background in my opinion make the ads stick out like a sore thumb.
Saturday, January 13, 2007
(Hat Tip: A daily dose of Internet)
Okay, although this isn't exactly an Orkut Hack (or even Orkut related) this nifty program may help you convert images on your computer into text art (which you can then post on your friends scrapbook or forums).
Here is a brief sample of text art (saved as an image) of me:
You can download the program over here. I think it would be really cool if you could add color to the text images using Orkut's formatting code.
I read about this several days ago, but have not had the time to post about it until now.
Apparently a discussion (or rather more like a debate) regarding Assam on Orkut has reached the India Gazette who quotes several people within the UFLA forum from last year (although the debate seems to have carried over well into 2007).
I decided to shop around Orkut to see what this UFLA debate was all about. I came across a forum called We Hate UFLA in which Bhargab explained some brief history regarding the whole event.
Historically Assam has been one of the most peaceful regions where various races and religions have lived in peace. Shortly after seven states were carved out of Assam in the early 70s, and towards the late 70s, the Assam agitation began. This agitation, started by students, sought to bring to the government's notice, two things:
1) Assam being neglected by the Central government in creating employment opportunities, despite Assam producing so much oil and tea,
2) Illegal migration by Bangladeshis and the Assamese slowly losing livelihood and land to them. These being pertinent issues, the whole of Assam supported the causes. This agitation carried on for about a decade, turning violent at times, and resulted in the Assam accord of 1988, when the Congress government at the centre, led by Rajiv Gandhi, made some lofty promises.
Assam was overjoyed and the student leaders became overnight heroes. Somewhere along the same time (late 70s) the ULFA (United Liberation Front of Assam) was formed; their agenda was similar to the students, except that they always demanded an independent nation.
Apparently things seemed to have spiraled down from there, with the current situation that is happening in Assam playing in front of the world stage.
Although terrorism in any form (in my opinion) can not be justified, at least there is some diolouge starting between the pro-UFLA and anti-UFLA crowds.
A long time ago my (former) boss told me that he didn't "want to hear your problems, I want to hear your solutions." Hopefully these two groups can come to a solution that pleases everyone, (at least a little bit) as war isn't the most fun of things to experience on planet Earth.
Whether its inside email, blogger comments, or Orkut scrapbooks, spam is really annoying. While their is currently no effective way to fight scrapbook spam, Sharath has developed a way for community owners to fight forum spam, which in the case for Orkut, can make or break a community.
Here are the details of how this hack works from his site (note: this requires Firefox and GreaseMonkey):
To use this script, simply go to your community, and click on "view all topics" button. It will start searching for spam messages and prompt you to delete if it finds any. For a shortcut, just enter: http://www.orkut.com/CommTopics.aspx?cmm=xxxx
Replace xxxx with your community ID.
Above you can see an example of confirmation message given to delete after detecting a spam message.
I tested this on the small forums that I owned, although no spam came up (probably because I deleted them recently before installing this hack). You can download this hack over here (GreaseMonkey and Firefox required) and if you have any questions, comments or words of praise you can reach Sharath on his blog.
I am going to recommend this to the Community Owners forum (as well as several others) and see what their opinion is of this tool (and how effective it is within their forums).
I wonder if something similar could be made for our scrapbooks?
Note: I am going to add this hack underneath Orkut User Tools underneath the sidebar.
Don over on TechNiche reports on an incident where someone tried to create an exact replica of his profile.
Someone had created a fake profile of mine in ORKUT! The fake profile was an exact clone of my profile! and the only difference was the number of friends!
He/She, whoever it is, was very clever and had already started adding all the people on my friends list!
I did not come to know this till some of my friends started asking me why another profile when i already had one! They thought it was me who created the profile and thought it was one of those pranks which i casually did!
I was taken for shock when i saw the fake profile, luckily he/she had not abused anyone using it, else there was a chance that i would have been mistaken by my friends.
Don reported the incident to Google, and within a day they removed the fake profile from Orkut (is it me, or has customer service recently improved on Orkut?).
Because I was curious myself, I decided to search for fake profiles, and low-and-behold I discovered one! Ironically, there was nothing in the profile (no pictures, no friends, and no communities listed) so I think Google should have an easy time figuring out the real me from the fake.
Note: If you ever run into a similar incident, you can always report fake profiles to these communities as they enjoy exterminating these types of accounts.
Tuesday, January 09, 2007
Sigh...and I was just about to check my scrapbook too!
Perhaps that explains why I was receiving those mysterious donut errors today. ;-)
I guess I'll be blogging elsewhere for now (or perhaps at least on my personal journal).
With us barely in 2007, I think I am going to start some rumors (more like suggestions) on the next upcoming features on Orkut.
If I could have five features for Orkut, it would be:
- Orkut for my mobile phone.
- Scrapbook viewable to friends only.
- Integrate Picasa Web Albums with Orkut Albums.
- RSS feeds (aka site feeds) for communities.
- Personalize your profile page (without GreaseMonkey hacks)
These are my suggestions--does anybody have any others?
Note: Because the commenting system on Blogger is acting up, I am temporarily removing the word verification, although I'll be moderating comments to filter out spam (you gotta love them--they teach you patience).
Update: Comment system (as well as Orkut) are working again. Yeah!
That is something that PuneetWorld is suggesting.
must say the photo gallery or photo album at orkut is terrible... ..its just too plain…photo album generated by orkut seem like webpage made by someone in 1995 it does deserve an update ...probably google should ajaxfy it like gmail .. or add some flash stuff to make it more cool. and convenient
if google too lazy to add few features to orkut albums ...least they would merge picasa web albums which somewhat bearable
Although I have no hard sources to report upon, I do have a strong feeling that Google may turn PuneetWorld's suggestion into reality.
I think combining Picasa Albums within Orkut (as well as some privacy settings along the way) would make visiting albums a lot more fun.
I must thank Rupesh for informing me about this.
Apparently it seems that the new Blogger Custom Domains is having some trouble hosting this site.
Ironically for some strange reason Inside Orkut can only publish at www.InsideOrkut.com or http://InsideOrkut.com, but not both.
I've contacted Google about this, and they have already fixed one of my other blogs (Colony Worlds) regarding this problem, but since they are swamped with upgrading the new blogger (as well as fixing the old one), it may be a while before they are able to correct the rest of my sites hosted by Google.
So for now I will be publishing at www.InsideOrkut.com, until they can resolve their server woes.
Note: Is it me, or is the comment system for blogger down?
Update: Comment system seems to be back up. Thanks Google!
Saturday, January 06, 2007
Wow...that was a very painless process! (well, mostly).
InsideOrkut.com is the new address for this weblog, although Google will redirect it from the blog*spot one fairly soon.
Now all I have to do is update all of the blog directories (plus resubmit a link to Google's server). :-)
This post is totally unrelated to Orkut, but nonetheless it does affect this blog site in an indirect-sort-of way.
(Blogger Buzz) The new version of Blogger now supports using a custom domain for serving your blog. If you already own a domain named, say, mysite.com and want your blog to be served at that address instead of at a blogspot.com address, we can host your blog on that domain for you — for free. Your old Blog*Spot address will forward to your new custom domain, so the switch will be seamless for your readers.
Ironically, it was not too long ago that I was considering "going pro" with this blog by having it on its own domain. I've already dabbled with Word Press, Vox and Moveable Type, and with the exception of Vox was not too thrilled over the "overall feel" of the sites.
Vox was great, but you could not host in on your own domain (so that left me at square one) while the Blogger FTP reminded me of the reason why I hated the old Blogger.
Until I can work out all of the bugs on the migration (with this blog as well as others) there will not be any new posts for a day (or two at most).
I will however be checking my email and scrap book, as well as checking out some of those cool forums you guys (and girls) have been sending me. :-)
Friday, January 05, 2007
While scanning some feeds, I came across this joke by Nick Douglas on ValleyWag:
Orkut Büyükkökten, creator of the Google social network that bears his name, dashes into CEO Eric Schmidt's office and says, "We have a million Brazilian users!"
Eric says, "Keep up the good work."
After Orkut leaves, Eric calls VP Marissa Mayer and asks, "How many is a brazillion again?"
I saw a similar joke on a political card over the holidays. Yeah, its a slow day in the blogosphere...that is unless you are YouTube.
After previously introducing themselves to the world, it looks like Akki has rebuilt Easy Scraper as well as come out with a whole new look.
The new version is a cross between Orkut Cute and Orkut Scrapper, as it runs as a "mini-Orkut browser" yet giving users the options to send colorful scraps to their friends.
Although you may find many of the features similar from last time, what makes this program great is the "boss mode" feature, which allows you to quickly hide the program just in case you are using it during work hours.
Note: Akki may want to consider removing from the toolbar view below, as merely having it displayed there may not only make the boss more suspicious, but also lead to ones quick exit from the company.
The program also adds an Orkut links shortcut bar at the top, allowing users to quickly access items such as profiles, albums, forums, etc.
Users can download the new version of Easy Scraper over here, and if you have any questions, suggestions or feedback for Akki, you can post them on the official forum.
Thursday, January 04, 2007
I came across this several days ago, but I could not find one article specifically saying which cafe's were enforcing this "official ban" from the government regarding the warrior king Chhatrapati Shivaji (which caused some protest earlier).
I suspect this article was written more to draw eyeballs to the screen, but I'll let you be the judge of that.
(Times of India) Due to the heat Orkut has generated in the past few days, cyber cafe owners here have decided to play it safe and told their customers verbally or through notice boards that logging on to the online community website is expressly banned. [...]
More recently, during the winter session of the state legislature at Nagpur, Shiv Sena MLC Arvind Sawant had demanded that the site be banned for 'obscene posts against Hindu women on the website'.
Since then, fearing legal hassles, cyber cafe owners have asked their customers to refrain from logging on to orkut.com.
The article goes on to explain that the order was supposedly given by the government to the internet cafe owners, although many of the owners are denying ever receiving instructions from the local authorities.
The cafe owners seem to be asking their users not to log onto Orkut, but ironically they are not:
- blocking access to the site
- banning members who use the site
- requiring a silly disclosure removing owners from legal harm
Could it be that Orkut is just way too popular in India and that censoring may affect their profits?
Wednesday, January 03, 2007
After surfing Orkut for interesting (and active) communities, both those I've visited and as well as some of the new ones appearing, I thought I would start off the Forums of Note with Brain Teasers.
Brain Teasers is not a community for the impatient, lazy minded individual who enjoys avoiding problems. What makes this community great is that users are always posting new puzzles to solve with everyone else trying to take a shot at finding the correct answer.
Here are some interesting puzzles/riddles that may give your brain a headache from over thinking:
- Firewall Escape Room (good for beginners)
- Busy In Office (no one has solved this yet)
- NeutralRiddle (a very popular one)
Note: Thanks for everyone sending me emails over the holiday weekend to check out some very interesting forums. If you have found a very interesting community inside Orkut, let me know by emailing me or posting a comment below.
Monday, January 01, 2007
Yeah, I know I'm late on this one, but Happy New Years everyone! I hope everyone enjoyed visiting their friends, family, and the parties (especially the fireworks).
With 2007 finally here, and the competition heating up online, I wonder what surprises Orkut has for us this upcoming year?