Monday Jul 28, 2008

1/2 a Day Out in Kolkata

It was 9:15 A.M., when my flight took off from Bangalore in the direction of Kolkata on 26th July 2008, Saturday. I was excited because I hadn't been to Kolkata before, and I was looking forward for this journey. Flight landed in Kolkata exactly at 11:45 A.M., on the same day of course

Before I forget: my company sent me there. I had two talks to deliver: one at St.Xavier's College at Park Street and the second one at The Park Hotel, not so far from Xavier's. Both of it went well, except for an unnecessary argument with one of the Professors from a college in Kolkata during the event number two. It all concluded at around 9:30 P.M. on the very same day.

I held with me a ticket for a 2:00 P.M. flight from Kolkata to Bangalore the next day. That meant, after a sleep, I had just about half a day to wander around a city, totally new to me. It was to happen that way.

Got up very early on 27th July, picked up my friend Kapil and headed towards Kalighat. The place was fully crowded. We observed, with great interest, the various offerings of devotees to Kaali, one of the principal deities of Bengal. Much time wasn't spent there. The next destination was the famous Victoria Memorial.

No doubt, British left a number of beautiful imprints behind in India. Victoria Memorial is just one of it. Being a Sunday, it didn't open its door for us. So we strolled around the park and took some snaps, occasionally praising all the marvelous pieces of Engineering that came in sight. Figuring out the fact that my friend had a formal training in Photography, I handed over my camera, quite conveniently to him, and requested him to capture everything interesting. Some of it are right below:

From Victoria Memorial, passing through the well known Howrah Bridge we travelled to the Belur Math. Talking about Belur Math, the monastery of Ramakrishna order, there is something in even its name that brings peace and tranquility to mind. Not sure if Shakespeare would agree to it! Probably, it is more appropriate to quote another personality here, who took all the pain, along with several other monastic disciples of Ramakrishna, to construct such an ashram in memory of their beloved Guru: "“The blazing light of universal harmony that will emanate from here will flood the whole world.” I don't need to tell you how it feels to be in such a place as described above by the great Swami Vivekananda. I enjoyed, immensely, the moments spent at Belur Math facing the river Ganges. Visit to Belur Math wouldn't go out of my mind soon.

Lastly, we went to Dakshineswar Kali Temple, which is a few minutes drive from Belur Math. The place was heavily crowded and for that reason, we moved out from there in no time.

After all this, I did manage to get to the Kolkata airport one hour before departure. It was a good half a day spent at Kolkata, which I wouldn't forget for long!

Friday Jul 18, 2008

Who Else's "[Ctrl+C] && [Ctrl+V]" ing Project Blackbox?

Looks like Project Blackbox has more imitations. Check this out.

Thursday Jul 17, 2008

Memories of a Short Trip to Pune

A day back, I was at Pune on business. On completing my job I had enough time to catch up with some of my friends. See 'em below. Again, this is our connecting link. Boy, I love my profession.

Thursday Jul 03, 2008

It's Official. Firefox is The World Record Holder

A few days back, when Firefox 3.0 was out, Mozilla aimed at a world record of maximum software downloaded on a download day. It's official now; Firefox is the World Record Holder. An astonishing 8,002,530 in just 24 hours! And if you haven't got your Download Day Certificate yet, click here.

Sunday Jun 29, 2008

For Windows XP, It's The Judgement Day

Micro$oft to kill Windows XP today. Read the article published in The Hindu, authored by Anand Parthasarathy.

Wednesday Jun 18, 2008

What's Apple Doing With DTrace?

Read an interesting article, titled: Apple's Grand Central threat to Microsoft. Pay close attention to the author's comment on DTrace (under the subtitle "The Storage Bits take").

Firefox 3 is Out

Firefox 3 The wait is over. Firefox 3 is out. Visit their official website to download your copy for free! There is still time left to help mozilla in their mission to set a Guiness World Record for most software downloaded in 24 hours. And what more, flaunt it.

Monday Jun 16, 2008

Firefox 3 - The Countdown Begins

Download Day
Firefox 3 is available for download on Tuesday the 17th June, 2008. Details here. They say, this one has it all. Eager to help 'Firefox' set the Guinness World Record for Most Software Downloaded in 24 Hours? Take the pledge now.

Sunday Jun 15, 2008

Typing Tutorial in Ubuntu

At my home in Kerala, where my parents live, I use an Ubuntu desktop. My parents have been eager to pick up some computer lessons for long. Last week, while I was at home, they managed to learn quite a few things on using a Computer desktop that includes, but not limited to using an E-mail client, an Internet browser and to some extent an Office Suite as well. One of those things that my father found frustrating was to get used to the Computer keyboard layout. I remember facing the same problem, when I started my career in Computers. With the help of a typing tutorial software that I found then, my typing speed increased to an impressive rate. Thanks to my father's favourite website, my search to get hold of one such typing tutorial in Ubuntu, fetched me a rather quick result. Tux Typing, which is also a part of Ubuntu repository offers some cool tutorials to help a novice get used to the Computer keyboard layout. Needless to say, my father seems quite motivated by his progress.

Let me also mention here that with the rather uncomplicated and clean User Interface in Ubuntu, the learning curve looks quite smooth. Ask my parents.

Thursday Jun 12, 2008

cp "Project Blackbox" "Project Big Green"

Read about who's imitating Sun's idea of Virtualized data center - the first of its kind - viz Sun MD S20, project named Project Blackbox.

Tuesday Jun 10, 2008

Snow Leopard has ZFS

ZFS - the last word in file systems is now in Apple's Mac OX Server Snow Leopard. Of course, the man behind ZFS has all the right to be excited about this news.

iPhone 3G Unveiled

Watch Apple CEO, Steve Jobs unveil the iPhone 3G.

Friday May 30, 2008

Don't want OOXML, says India, Brazil

Let me set the context here: On 2nd April 2008, ISO approves Microsoft Open Office XML (OOXML) as an ISO/IEC International Standard. India didn't vote for it, says The ET. Dr. Deepak Phatak writes a lengthy, but stirring note on the OOXML happenings in India. Cut to present, India and Brazil file an appeal against the adoption of MS OOXML as an International Standard. The news is here.

And as all this happened, MS quietly announced its support for the ODF.

Sunday Apr 13, 2008

Happy Vishu

Wishing all of you a happy Vishu.

Wednesday Mar 19, 2008

OpenOffice Win in Malaysia

The Malaysian Administrative Modernisation and Management Planning Unit (MAMPU) are moving to OpenOffice. Read more about it here.

And to all my friends who pay a bomb for an office suite I have only this to say that there is an option available for you in the form of OpenOffice and it comes at a price of $0. Try it and see.

Wednesday Feb 13, 2008

Memoirs of a Lovely Evening at Little India.

It was in the month of November 2006 that I met Yusuke for the first time. We had landed at Singapore with a common interest of picking up some lessons on Solaris Internals. How much can you know about a person in just five days? May not be much. But at times it takes only a few minutes to develop a good rapport with someone. Else, how could it happen this way that a stranger from the Land Of Rising Sun offer to join for an outing to the streets in Singapore.

And thus on Monday, 20th November '06 we set out for a journey to Little India in the late evening after our sessions. Some times, even such a short segment in life carry an impression that last quite a long period. So many months have passed, still those memories haven't faded: walking through the busy streets, jostled by the men and women of all ages, trying to educate each other on the cultural differences between India and Japan, and finally getting into an Indian restaurant to gobble down some food at night.

It's not that all of a sudden those memories just popped up and I decided to publish in the blogosphere. I've already written about that evening in here. The reason why those thoughts came up again is because Yusuke was here in Bangalore last week and I spent an entire Saturday with him moving around in the city. When I was confused about various destinations that I could take him to in Bangalore, he pulled out a Japanese book from his bag which had a map of India and detailed descriptions about top tourist destinations in and around Bangalore and other Indian cities. It is with that kind of preparations that these folks travel! He flew back to Tokyo the same night, but not before evoking in me the good old memories of that lovely evening spent together at Little India.

Saturday Jan 19, 2008

Handicapped DTrace in Mac OS X Leopard?

Leopard has DTrace, a fact you can verify here. One among the DTrace Three proves that Apple's implementation of DTrace in Leopard is 'handicapped.' Click here to read what he has to say on this.

Friday Jan 18, 2008

Apple - MacBook Air

Folks, if you haven't still watched Apple's MacBook Air guided tour, click here. No stopping Apple from 'wowing' the world consistently .

Friday Dec 28, 2007

Happy New Year 2008 [In Advance]

From: R Rajesh
Date: 28 December 2007 4:55:58 PM GMT+05:30
To:All My Training Participants, Relatives, Friends, Colleagues and Kind Blog Readers
Subject: Happy New Year 2008 [In Advance]

Dear All,

This time of the year, every year for the last few years, a sense of restlessness dominates in me to reach out to my friends, acquaintances and relatives alike to pass on the seasons best greetings. I do remember writing a similar note in the past, around this time last year and I know a few out there who received it, read it and replied to it. Clearly, I am running myself into the risk of repetition.

But then if pattern of events in life - both joyous and grievous - can repeat itself year after year, in spite of all our celebrations at the moment when the New Year would meet the old one, why would I ever hesitate to show up and speak out the same old thoughts.

While we pull ourselves together to flip through a brand new calendar, hoping happiness, peace and prosperity all the way along, this may well be an appropriate occasion to sit back, contemplate on the path trodden during the past dozen months or so, and may be take suitable measures to do the productive things better, put a full stop to all activities that are useful to none, and finally pray and hope for the possession of a stable mind, capable of absorbing all those episodes in life that are generally beyond the control of human beings like you and me.

Personally, I wish to take advantage of this moment of celebrations to stop by each one of you, to let you know how much thankful I am for all your valuable contributions to my triumphs and in all the milestones that I touched. Thank you!

As you read this note, probably there is an extravagant New Year party waiting for you. I wish the enthusiasm, the energy with which we step into one more New Year in our life and this celebration mood that we're in this moment last throughout the year and make us capable to treat every single day as a New Year, full of positive resolutions.

Happy New Year 2008!

affectionately yours,

--R Rajesh

Tuesday Dec 25, 2007

The Christmas Day Training

Based on mutual understanding, we decided to continue the ongoing PTL 4310 training in Mumbai even on the Christmas day. But that doesn't deny anyone a chance to celebrate the birth of Jesus the Christ. My participants managed to bring with them loads of Christmas cakes and we had our share of celebrations in the classroom itself. Thanks folks for a memorable Christmas day.

Merry Christmas

Wishing you all a very merry Christmas.

Friday Oct 26, 2007

The Leopard is Arriving

In just under a few hours, the new version of the Mac OS (10.5), popularly known as the Leopard would be launched in the market. I happened to see some of the previews on this new version of the Mac OS X and as expected, this one offers some really really cool features. Some features, however, requires additional accessories like an external hard disk, Apple Remote Control etc.

General requirements and additional requirements for installing Leopard can be found @ the following location:

Click here to view the System Requirements.

The new features of the Mac OS X Leopard can be viewed @ this location.

Sunday Oct 21, 2007

Canon PowerShot SD1000 Support in Ubuntu 6.06

When my cousin plugged his brand new Canon PowerShot SD1000 on his PC running Dapper Drake, the autoimport failed with the following error:

An error occurred in the io-library ('Could not claim the USB device'): Could not claim interface 0 (Operation not permitted). Make sure no other program or kernel module (such as sdc2xx, stv680, spca50x) is using the device and you have read/write access to the device.

After googling for a while, the following is what I had to perform on his PC to get the autoimport feature working for him in Ubuntu 6.06.

jithu@jithu-desktop:~$ cat /etc/issue
Ubuntu 6.10 \\n \\l
jithu@jithu-desktop:~$ lsusb
Bus 001 Device 016: ID 04a9:314f Canon, Inc.
Bus 001 Device 001: ID 0000:0000
jithu@jithu-desktop:~$ sudo vi /etc/udev/rules.d/45-libgphoto2.rules
###Add the following line at the appropriate location in the above-mentioned file. The numbers 04a9 and 314f are obtained from the lsusb output.
SYSFS{idVendor}=="04a9", SYSFS{idProduct}=="314f", MODE="0660", GROUP="plugdev"
jithu@jithu-desktop:~$ sudo /etc/init.d/udev restart

My hope is that someone out there could save their precious time with this small piece of information.

Tuesday Oct 16, 2007

Baggage Regained

After a lot of confusion and drama, I have finally got my lost baggage. I knew I would get it back, but I was worried about its time frame. All my "CEC 2007 goodies" are intact. Thanks to all the folks who contributed to speed up this whole process.

Thursday Sep 13, 2007

WG111v2 Support on Ubuntu

A friend of mine took me through the famous Ritchie Street in Chennai, when I told him about my plan to buy a Wireless adapter. This was just over a week back. Let me make a reasonably lengthy story short: I bought a WG111v2 Wireless USB 2.0 Adapter and I did so after confirming from the owner of the shop that it would work fine with the Ubuntu OS. Even after the generous shop owner's phone calls to the support team at Netgear, positively clarifying my doubts on its support on Ubuntu, I must confess that I was still doubtful if it would function properly on Ubuntu.It was Windows written all over the case, and no mentioning about any other supported OS! The forums that I hit on the web - almost all of them, including the one that you would view if you click here - suggested the installation of NDISwrapper, which I felt was a bit of hassle. Just now I unpacked this device and connected to one my desktops running Fiesty Fawn and know what, it just worked.

Then I tried plugging it in to another desktop running Edgy Eft and the result was no different. So take my word, Netgear WG111v2 54Mbps wireless USB 2.0 Adapter just works, at least in the last two recent releases of the Ubuntu Operating System. Let me know if there is someone out there whose experience was any different than mine.

A request to the Netgear team: Could someone fix the Registration Page on the website as I am being kicked back on to the same page upon clicking the link 'Activate your Support Contract(s)'. Tried it with different browsers, but to no avail. Am I the one who's making a mistake or is it a known issue?

Wednesday Sep 12, 2007

TATA Indicom Plug2Surf on Mac OS X

You wouldn't hit on many Mac OS X users in this part of the world. Naturally, it becomes difficult to figure out an easy Mobile Internet Solution for someone carrying an Apple equipment with Mac OS X running on it. I have been trying to get hold of a Mobile Internet Solution for my Apple laptop and my endeavour to do so has always been discouraged by the Telecom companies, very often giving me a feel that I chose a wrong platform to work with in India. But recently, I saw an advertisement in Television, featuring one of the famous Bollywood actresses and I was quite impressed by the sleek look of the USB Modem by TATA Indicom.

Last evening, I stepped into a TATA Indicom customer service center and picked up this device. Luckily this time, on my enquiry about this device, the Customer Support Representative in there was quite positive about the support of this modem on a machine running Mac OS X. He in fact took the pain of demonstrating it on one of the Apple laptops that we carried to the shop. Apart from changing the network configuration, he did absolutely nothing to get this working on the Mac OS X. No driver installation; plug and play sort of thing. A SIM is inserted to this device. It took just under 24 hours to get this connection activated.

So now I am connected to the Internet using this device. I wouldn't say it is super fast like a broadband connection. In any case my objective to buy this was only to use while on the move and I am sure it would serve my purpose. But the one review that I read about this connection here is not really impressive. Let me experience this personally and I shall update you on my thoughts.

Monday Sep 10, 2007

Y! Messenger 3.0 for Mac ~ Mac OS X - iChat

For a very long time I was using an old version of Yahoo Messenger without really bothering about checking for its newer version. And ever since Jeff introduced me to iChat I thought I wouldn't find a better chat tool than iChat. I don't intend to change my opinion here. But a couple of days back I happened to download the Yahoo! Messenger for Mac 3.0b2 and found it quite similar to the iChat bundled with the Mac OS X, including the feature of displaying the iTunes track on the user status. Look at the snapshot below and see it for yourself.

Sunday Aug 26, 2007

Onam Greetings!

Courtesy : BBC News

Nirmal Shekar, one of my favourite Sport writers once wrote in an article, “Nostalgia, to be sure, is a disease, a disease that not even a double dose of reality can cure. It is as common as cold in many of us who look back to our golden yesterday and then sigh, ‘Ah, nothing is what it used to be.’” And at this very moment I can feel my entire system giving way for that incurable disease to take complete control over me; to drag me to my home town where you would see me celebrate the festival of Onam with great pomp and show. It was sheer fun then, filled with immense joy. But with the passage of time, most of us leaving our home town in pursuit of a decent career, all such celebrations have come to an end. Things do not look the same.

There was always a lot of work involved on this festive day in preparing the delicious food served to the entire family. But today we get everything in packaged format. It was fun to be involved in lot of discussions on a day like Onam, for those were the occasions when all members of the family met at a single location. Hasn't television taken away a major part of that fun by showing some special programs (most of which are really boring) on a day like Onam, including a couple of three hour movies that generally gets over in exactly double the time frame of the actual movie timing, with lot of advertisements every five minutes or so? Television to a larger extent has been largely responsible for making people look lazy on occasions of this sort. Why blame T.V., blame ourselves for switching it on and keep it switched on from dusk to dawn. Otherwise, there used to preparations for the festival starting as early as 4:00 A.M. Anyway, things have changed and it would be foolish on my part not to accept this change and adapt myself to it.

I have already written a post about the Onam festival here and I wouldn't want to repeat myself. I wish all of you a Happy Onam. Please celebrate this festival of joy in whichever way you can.

Wednesday Aug 15, 2007

Song of Youth

Today, India celebrates its sixtieth Year of Independence. At this juncture, I would wish to publish here an E-mail that I sent to a few friends of mine on this day in 2003. I wish, my dear readers spare some time to go through this note.

From: R Rajesh
Sent: Friday, August 15, 2003 2:49 PM
Subject: Song of Youth

Hi All,

In the Epilogue of the book "Ignited Minds," Dr. A P J Kalam writes:
"I have conveyed the message overleaf (appended below) to nearly 40,000 school children in Chennai, Porbandar, Rajkot, Jamshedpur, Bhubanewsar, Dindigul, Abu Road, Anand, Udaipur and many other places so far. I hope to reach 100,000 young minds before August 2003. When thousands recite this, I see the developed India."

Song of Youth

Me and My Nation - India

As a young citizen of India,
armed with technology, knowledge and love for my nation,
I realize, small aim is a crime.

I will work and sweat for a great vision,
the vision of transforming India into a developed nation
powered by economic strength with value system.

I am one of the citizens of a billion,
only the vision will ignite the billion souls.
It has entered into me.
the ignited soul compared to any resource,
is the most powerful resource
on the earth, above the earth and under the earth.

I will keep the lamp of knowledge burning
to achieve the vision - Developed India

- Dr A P J Kalam.

Celebrate the Independence Day.

-R Rajesh


Sunday Aug 12, 2007

International Youth Day 2007

United Nations commemorates International Youth Day today. Should you find yourself interested in knowing how you could participate in celebrating the International Youth Day, please read this note published in the official website of United Nations.

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