WHAT IF THERE WOULD BE NO TECHNOLOGICAL PROGRESS?

Man would be like the stone-age man living by depending on nature and its natural gifts. We would remain intelligent but ignorant about our intelligence. We could be content with the food we find in nature but would lack the desire to eat tasty food. In the modern age every man is busy running from one end to another in the process of doing his job, in the sense, to earn bread for his family. This he does because of the various opportunities and job options that he has due to his education.

But if there were no technological progress there would have been no education. We would only be looking up to the nature, experiencing the heat of the sun, rain, cold as and when given without any desire for beautiful roofs and shelters. Whenever we are hungry we would go in search of food and not behind the means to earn it. Parents would be free from trouble in the absence of demands for pizzas, burgers etc.

With no education there would be no competition and hence less violence probably. Demands for entertainment of the minds also would be absent. In the absence of technological progress means of communication and transport would not prevail. The atmosphere would be clean with no pollution anywhere. Priests would be busy trying to find solution to human problems by persuading the humble people to endure their hard lot as destined. There would be no need of yoga gurus or gyms as people would be exercising enough by walking long distances. There would be no need of counseling the minds about the art of living, since a person who has sufficed his hunger by whatever means is a happy person at the end of the day.

Could God have made a mistake in His creation process?

Does the Creator God ever make mistakes in any of His actions? Some people think that He does sometime and in fact He had already committed one.

Though everything He had put inside and outside the Earth is for the Humans’ benefit, what good is a mosquito for us? Why did He create these winged creatures which seem to be anti people? If anything they cause diseases like Malaria, dengue fever and what not and seldom any good for men and women.

It’s certain that Adam and Eve would have complained to God about the nuisance value of these biting insects, more so since they had no bed sheet or any kind of clothes to cover themselves from these aerial attackers. “We cannot sleep because of these monsters, Father God,” they would have cringed.

God might have thought over the request and told them, “You had better find a remedy by yourselves.” When our first parents scratched their chin for a solution, God might have shown them some plant. “Ah, that is it,’ they would have exclaimed and possibly rubbed it on their skin. Presto. The mosquitoes didn’t bother them thereafter. But this medicine proved effective only for a few months and the fellows came in hordes later as if to take vengeance. The killer insects had developed some immunity against the medicinal plant.

This routine has been going on till now. Researchers and industrialists have been introducing in the market from time to time several kinds of sprays, cream, vapour, tablets, liquid, electronic devices etc to protect the human bodies from these suckers. And the mosquitoes in their turn, have been evolving immunity of some kind against each measure and after a while start their biting game all over again. Do they also have an
R & D department of sorts?

Scientists also tell us that the effect of the various repellants available in the market lasts just about two hours or so. So, our night time prowlers would wait for these two hours to pass and then attack us like hell. By then we too would be too fast asleep to feel anything about their bites.

Some months back, the Defence scientists came with a chemical compound called DEPA (Diethil, phenyl and acetamide). It is a non-toxic and non irritant chemical that prevents mosquitoes from sensing the human flesh and therefore would be unable to bite us. DEPA does not kill or repel mosquitoes but confuses and disorients them. In other words, this chemical plays on their mental faculties. On contacting DEPA, they would swoon but not lose all their senses and might ask, “Where am I? What am I doing here? Who am I?” which is reminiscent of our Hindi film dialogue. And thus they would forget their role of biting and remain in a state of imbroglio for a pretty long time.

DEPA is meant for the Defence personnel who have to fight from various kinds of terrains which are never free from mosquitoes.

Lately, the American scientists also have come out with a kind of gas
that would upset their thinking system and prevent them from smelling and sucking out human blood. The gas is similar in effect to DEPA.

When and how will these creatures work out a resistance against the new chemicals and gas, is anybody’s guess. But, work out they would
because the mosquito brand R & D department keeps itself up to date and moves with the time!

Creation is around 7000 years old according to the Biblical calculations. We haven’t been able to eliminate the mosquito menace in seven thousand years. So, it would appear that God wants us to live and let mosquitoes also live along side us in the tropical regions of the Earth. Therefore we have to tolerate them and keep on inventing one anti dote measure after another on the time scale.

A few tips on password strength…

We all know how important it is to secure our identities online. It’s just a matter of decoding the passwords since the world is full of unpredictable stalkers. At the end of the day, no amount of blame game would going to secure our important info online. So, it’s better safe than sorry. Over the years, my affair with internet has taught me a few things about passwords, which I going to share with you here.

1. Anything on the dictionary can be deciphered. So, its wise to punctuate the passwords with dots, commas. Make it long and complex.

2. Birthdays, phone numbers, addresses, spouses’ nick names – all are very weak passwords. We need to change them to stronger ones by using abbreviations like, I LOVE PAUL becomes ILP and so on..

3. The security question are generally weak. Anyone close to us,would know the answer. We need to change the spellings or customize our own questions.

4. Create strong passwords by using the whole keyboard. Use a mix of upper and lower cases. Use a mix of alphabets , numerals and special characters.

All in all work your brains to create strong passwords for secure online transactions and safe personal info.

Computers for seniors

Most of us have a chance to use computers in our daily life but are awed by the feeling that it may be too complex  and learning them too difficult at this age. You could not be more wrong. Today’s computers have been made so easy to use that a normal 5 year old can use them  and unless you are very unlucky, you cannot damage anything easily, until you get angry and bang your computer on the floor. To start working on the computer you just have to switch on the power- just like you switch on the fan.

Many Seniors Citizens are today using their computers and are on emails and surf the net regularly. And at least three have written books using computers, because it becomes so easy. We know of a senior citizen, 80 years old, who, due to an accident could not use his right hand, keeps in regular contact with his son in USA. He is very enthusiastic using his computer.

As seniors what are the important needs of our life:

  1. Good health
  2. Keeping in touch with our family and friends.
  3. Companionship
  4. Intellectual stimulation
  5. Satisfying our creative urge for which we may not have got a chance earlier
  6. An easier way to do many simple jobs.

Of course you will point out many more. But let us examine how computers can help you fulfill many of these needs in an easy manner.

  1. Good health. You have to consult doctors and take your medicines. But sometimes your  doctor may not take the time to explain things fully. You can go to the internet and learn all about your health problems, what to avoid, what to do. You can read up about the reactions of medicines that you are taking and so be on your guard.
  2. Keeping in touch with your family and friends. Nowadays the art of writing letters is almost lost. So we easily lose touch with friends, and keep in touch with close family members through the phone. But with the email, you can keep in touch with everybody you love or his  family, friends, even acquaintances, without time lag, easily and without any cost. Many of you may be having children abroad, or even in distant cities in India. Sending them an email and getting a response possibly within minutes is a very satisfying experience. You can even telephone most countries for free if you talk over the net – and with your children, you can do it on video where you look at each other while talking. All for free.
  3. Companionship. Even if you are a very social person, and meet your friends regularly, you may still need a computer for this purpose. You have social websites, where you can make friends, discuss things, share your sorrows and joys. All while sitting at home, and at no cost. This can be particularly useful, if you are unwell.
  4. Intellectual stimulation. You want to fire your mind. Read up on your favourite topic – whatever it is. If it is reading. Many books are available for reading on the net without paying anything. Is it painting, sculpture, photography. Go to the best galleries and view the works of your favourite artists – paintings, sculptures photographs – -anything. One of the ladies once wanted to see the original Mona Lisa. You can see her. If fond of gardening,  you can read up about how to rear plants of any variety etc. You can read almost any magazine on the internet without having to buy it – or any newspaper. Want to read Pakistani newspapers. They are there on the net and so are many US and UK newspapers.
  5. Creative urge. Want to write stories, articles, poems or sing songs. You can do so on blog sites. You can comment on political happenings if you like to and you will be surprised at how many read what you have written, or hear your songs and comment on it. And you can make friends with others of the same interests without revealing your identity if you don’t want to.
  6. An easier way to do many chores. Lastly you all must be knowing that you can do a lot of banking work on the internet- check your accounts, print out your statements, order cheque books, stop payment of cheques etc. You can pay most bills – electricity,telephone, mobile etc on line.

CONCLUSION; In conclusion, I would like to say that for a senior citizen, learning the use of a computer is not an option but a necessity. A computer empowers you to lead a fuller and more useful life. You may be surprised, after you start using computers.

How to download the test version the Google Chrome OS for windows

You can actually get an early taste of Google Chrome OS for Windows in 5 simple steps. Follow the simple steps and decide for yourself if you really want to go for it or not.

1. Download Chromium

Go to tinyurl.com/chromedev and click on the Dev Channel link to download the preview version of Chrome. This is an experimental beta.

2. Edit the Target Field

Once installed, right click on the Chrome desktop shortcut and choose properties. Add a space and click enable apps to the end of the text in Target field. Click Apply and hit OK. Now it’s locked.

3. Install the web apps

Open chrome, go to the Extensions, and enter Developer Mode. Click on Load Unpacked Extension and navigate to Chrome’s Resources folder. You should find it on your C drive under program files.

4. Customize your choice

You will find 3 folders, gmail, app, calendar app and docs app. Click one and repeat stage 3 to add to the web apps to your Extensions menu. Open a new tab and click one you want to stick to your toolbar.

5. Test it out

Gmail and docs are the only applications available right now in the test version. However, we are expecting many more sooner this year.

Enjoy the test version!

How to block a website on your system?

Website blocking on local computer

If you want to block access to particular websites on your system you can use this method to block some websites.  Moreover, parents can also block certain websites from their children. It is most widely used in schools and colleges to restrict the use of some websites which are not allowed to be opened in these places, for example, Sites containing explicit material, social networking or free downloading sites. These are also used in business centres or offices to stop the employees for wasting time on various social networking sites.

This trick can be performed in this way.

1. Click on My Computer.

2. Open your Operating system drive.

3. Go to Windows –>System32–>drivers–>etc

i.e at the location C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc

and then in the etc folder look for the file “hosts”

4. Open the file “hosts” with notepad.

5.  Find the line 127.0.0.1 localhost

6. Suppose we have to block the site “facebook”.

7. To block www.facebook.com, just add the following text under 127.0.0.1 localhost:

127.0.0.1 www.facebook.com

8. Save the file.

By this method we can add any number of sites we want to block, however it is needed to be prefixed with “127.0.0.1”.

This blocks all the websites we listed in “hosts” file from opening in any browser whether it is Mozilla Firefox or Google chrome or any other browser.

Few tips for the newbies to earn from the internet

Earning on the internet involves a lot on activity. You need to do a lot of networking, sharing, interacting in a way that benefits each other. A major earning logarithm works on down line building and gathering referrals, while others require you to write proactively, consistently and voraciously. Having spent days researching on the right kind of approach on right kind of sites and to earn from them, I have learned a few basic things on which the virtual world works on. I would like to share those with you here.

How to start off

Don’t expect to become rich overnight. Online earnings happen slowly and take a lot of time and effort.

A few cents from several sites add up to a decent amount. So, invest in lot of genuine sites instead of just one or two. Your effort and time would build up a network that’s very important in converting the cents to dollars.

Your profile speaks volumes about you and your work. Invest time to build an enhancing profile. Be honest and modest. It pays off.

Stay away from scam sites. Most of the sites which ask you to pay first invariably are scam sites. The best opportunities are free sites unless you know someone who has got paid from the sites requiring upfront payment. If you are not sure, ask questions in the forums or amongst online friends.

Spend some time learning while you earn. Join forums which talk about your interests and your skills. There is always an opportunity out there with your specific skill set and interests.

Start with a few activities and gradually expand as time permits you. Be prepared to devote your time and effort.

Open a Paypal account, if you do not have one already. Some sites pay you directly by cheque, while most use payment gateways like Paypal. Another important account that you must have is Google Adsense. It helps you earn from your blog or other sites.

The importance of Networking

A lot of online earning opportunities involve networking. The more successful you are in online networking the more you likely to succeed in your earning endeavour.

If you are already part of a social networking site, make as many new friends who are active online as you can. Visit their blogs/sites/articles, leave comments and votes.

When you join a particular site which involves interaction with other members, make as many friends you can and comment/rate their articles.

There are sites which are ideal for promotion or drawing traffic to your articles/content. I strongly recommend Twitter which gets traffic to your websites. You can also consider sites like Digg, Mixx, stumbleupon, Youtube and Facebook.

Lastly, do not lose heart if you are not successful. Keep trying. It took me almost ten years to earn a modest amount from the internet. Perseverance does pay off.

Good luck!

Woo-hoo! I got my payment! Thanks IBW!

Only a couple of months ago, I expressed my words of gratitude to the ‘Indian Blog World’. IBW has made me proud of my nationality. Nothing like being able to write down your thoughts in a forum where people share the same ethos and integrity, and when you get paid for something you love doing – nothing like it!

Today, it gives me immense pleasure to tell you that I have received my first ever payment from an Indian site – something I had only dreamt of! Things seemed smoother than many international sites since we can get to do the transfer of the earning easily and without any deduction of charges. There had been some glitches on the online account of the bank I subscribe to but the payment came through pretty soon once it was resolved. I really thank the editor to have pulled through and being so supportive and understanding.

‘Indian blog world’ promises a future much better than what it does today and following pointers would validate the same.

1) Simplicity, plainspeak and the minimal theme make this forum stand out.

2) Nothing like sharing your thoughts with a bunch of like minded people who share the same ethos.

3) It’s easy to publish your articles, poems etc. than most of the international paying sites.

4) The visual editors do a great job enhancing our articles by reading through them and accentuating them with befitting pictures. The best part – we can even turn the visual editor off.

5) IBW aims at writers from all over the world to whom they compensate sensibly.

6) The mode of payment and mode of transfer is smooth and hassle free.

7) Now the best part, we do not have to spend sleepless nights promoting our articles in different networks. We get to earn even without getting traffic and increase the page views as in other forums. This is the most motivating thing about IBW.

It would be great to see IBW among the top rated sites when it’s being featured in the Google and other search engines. For this, we contributors need to work hard and promote the site everywhere we go. That’s our moral responsibility and I am doing that in my own ways. I have referred ‘Indian Blog World’ to family and friends who live here and abroad and looking for still more outlets.

Even though little professional touch ups can give it the just enough glitz and finesse, IBW has a subtle appeal – the theme being submissive and understanding. However, these are minor issues and things will improve with time. I am sure the admin has its own criteria in the pipeline. So, for the time being let me thank the whole team of ‘Indian Blog world’ and celebrate the moment.

Cheers!

Power of small things

Have you ever wondered how small things we use  at home and office  have made our life easier and comfortable? Strangely, we  least remember the inventors of these contraptions or we don’t even try to find out who the were.

Safety pins

Take the safety pins for instance.  Is there  any home right up to the smallest village level without safety  pins?  It’s such a small thing to handle too. I often think how mothers some 1000 years back kept their baby’s napkin firm in the child’s hindquarters.

Mr. Walter Hunt, an American designed the first safety pin in 1849 to keep pieces of clothes together. This was made from a single piece of steel wire.  Not seeing much prospects for the invention, he sold off his patent  for $ 400 dollars to a friend to pay off a debt. But later in April 1849, he obtained a patent for an improved model of a steel wire  coiled at one end and the protruding end locked in a crevice.  By and large we use this model even today.

Ask any Home maker if she could administer her house  without safety pins.  She would say an emphatic NO.

Hair clips

According to records, hair clips were designed and patented by Kelly Chamandi  in 1925.  This is an offshoot of safety pins and was introduced some 75 years after the safety pins. Why such a long time gap, is difficult to comprehend.  Possibly the ladies in those days didn’t need them.  Not so in present time. No lady regardless of the hair style she is used to, could live without hair clips. A cheap material but very valuable for keeping the hair from flying off.

Push pins

We use them for pinning together sheets of paper usually in offices. In recent times staplers have come into use but yet push pins are much more effective and preferred by the office goers. It is not known who invented this but  since no ingenuity was required,   the manufacturers have been concentrating  their effort on producing a number of varieties. Several models have come into the market such as  map pins with colourful  heads  and flat pins etc.

We didn’t have the push pins in India for many years.  I still remember the office clerks and superintendents using ‘thorns’ to keep stacks of paper around the year 1935.  Push pins possibly came to India during World War II.  It’s a valuable piece  in all types of offices and banks. But for the push pin we wouldn’t know how to keep two sheets of paper together.

Sewing needle

It appears  that Muslims in Spain used  needles with an eyelet through which a thread was passed for stitching clothes or mending them.  They were driven out of  Spain in the 15th century.  The needle concept was then taken by them  to Arabian lands and later found its way to England in the 17th century.  The design was perfected and  mass produced in England,

Thread and needle are valuable items in any home even today. How will you stitch your buttons without thread and needle?.

Sewing machines

I feel that one of  the greatest inventions for man kind is the sewing machine. It is an equipment which cannot be replaced nor could we do without it.

The fore runner for a sewing machine is a needle with an eyelet.  It was Walter Hunt (Safety pin fame)  who used the needle to produce a sewing machine of sorts in the year 1849. He lost interest in it thinking that it would create unemployment. One Elias Howe reinvented the machine whose design was copied by Isaac Merrit Singer  who made further improvement by placing the needle vertically  and a presser foot to keep the cloth in place, along with a shuttle  underneath. Thus came into being the modern sewing machine and has been  monopolized by Merrit Singer.

I wonder how life would be if there are no sewing machines and tailors around  in the world. You have to then wrap round your body a five meter long cloth to go outside your home.  Could you imagine yourself walking  like a ghost on the streets? That would have been  your apparel in the absence  of a sewing machine and tailor.

Stethoscope

In spite of digital electronics and associated devices, it is the Stethoscope which continues to be  a Physician’s pass port.  Have you ever seen any doctor without stethoscope garland  round his neck?  You snatch it away, any doctor would feel most miserable.

One Rene Laennec, a French man, was the inventor of the  stethoscope. He was serving as a physician in  1816  and he wanted to examine the condition of his patient’s heart.  He took a  thick paper, rolled it into a cylinder shape, put one end on the patient’s heart and the other end to his ear. He heard the heart  beats clearly.  Thus came into being the stethoscope to feel the heart beats all over the upper portion of a human body.    Though  the invention is some two hundred years old, the world has not found a replacement for it and as cheap.

The above are inexpensive things and are  commonly available which make our life easy.  Don’t you think we need to thank the inventors? Further more, they have become  inseparable parts of our daily life and are irreplaceable inventions too.  They may go on and on for centuries.

Do Indians have greater scope to earn money on internet?

Many Internet users want to make money online. They try their best to earn money but unfortunately most of them fail miserably. At one stage they think it is not possible to make money online. The reason for this is there are too many scam sites out there. People fall prey to the scammers and lose their hard earned money and the precious time.

Okay, can we really make money on Internet?  The answer is “YES”. As you are aware everything is there on Internet, nothing left. There must be earning opportunities as well on Internet. You need to do a lot of research to identify the legit sites where you can work and make money.

The scope for Indians to make money on Internet is brighter. You know why? The population factor is the reason.  In India every day thousands of people start using Internet.

In India we can build a strong referral down line easily. Building a strong down line means higher earning potential on Internet.

Let us dominate the world in making money online.

MAKE MONEY FROM PAID TO CLICK SITES

Cellphone is a great personal companion

Hasn’t  Cell phone made our life most comfortable and fast? It would look as though the world has been shrunk by this invention  and  any part in it  is accessible   in seconds.! You can talk to anyone  from anywhere,   from a ship or a train or  a passenger airliner, a mountain top within seconds?.  I wonder if the astronauts have used it while on a mission round the Earth at a height of some 300 km.  In their next trip, they may carry a cell phone and give a feed back on its workability from Space.

The other day,  I stood under a tree on a main road next to my house to study the road users  and their habits.  I noted that every third man was talking on his cell phone while walking along the highway. If this mobile instrument has become so popular an  equipment, how many people  have kept themselves away from possessing one? We can arrive at some figure only through a sample survey.

Statistics show that  India has the  second largest telecommunication network in the world. As in March 2010, there are  584 million  active mobile phones  and the number is expected to touch a billion by 2012.  Great news indeed. It’s a constant companion to many as of now.

One Sunday, we were on a picnic  in a remote forest, some 50 KM from  the city.. Our son received a call on his mobile; it  was from Muscat (Oman). What a  sight it was to see him talk to someone about 4000 miles away while he himself was  in a forest far from  any trace of civilization.

The mobile phone technology came into being just some ten years back in India. Till then there was nothing except the land line telephones. In that era, some 45 years ago, a Physician came to me  one day and said, “I am the personal physician for the President of India.  He is a heart patient and wants me to be available almost instantly during an emergency.   Could you provide a suitable instrument for me so that  I am contacted anywhere in the city of New Delhi?”   At that time I was on deputation to a Telecommunication industry.  I got in touch with the research department and apprised them about the urgency of  the project. We were then   in  the transistor age.  So, we fabricated  a transistor  receiver  of the size 10” x 6 “ x 2 “ housed  in a leather case on a single frequency.  We had used a 100 watt  AM transmitter right on top of the Rashtrapati Bhawan (The President’s abode). When the  doctor was required, all an attendant or anyone  at the President’s bedside had to do  was  just to press a button and the doctor received a beep signal on his portable  receiver.

The physician felt embarrassed to sport a gadget hanging from his shoulder in the midst of  people, especially while attending a social party.  The receiver was  humming and crackling all the time with static noise.  But it couldn’t  be helped. Pocket type mini radios hadn’t come into the market then.

But not so these days. People around you   won’t even know that you have inside your pocket  a  tiny walkie talkie   until it starts ‘singing’ and you pull it out of your inner pocket and say ‘hello’.

While a cell phone is a boon, it is also a nuisance, you know ? Last week, a man had rung  me at 0300 hours. “Hullo, I said rather sleepily.”

“Who are you?” he asked me?  “Listen dear chap you rang me up.  Tell me first who you are.?”  I had responded  angrily. So, he must have thought that I was a police officer or some one  of that kind.  He disconnected immediately.  I remained awake for an hour thereafter.   While you could laugh off such calls during  day time, you can’t in the night after 2300 hours.  But then every invention has its good points as well as nuisance points.

Gadgets I Cannot Do Without

Gadgets, gizmos, geeks – no I am not much into these stuffs but I cannot deny my dependence on certain gadgets. I have developed strong adherence to a few over the years. If you ask me, well I can do without them but it will going to take time.

1. The first on the list would be the LAPTOP.
It has given me a strong sense of conviction that I can get accepted even when I rant out. Thanks to you all guys. It’s a Compaq Presario

2. USB PEN DRIVES: This is most indispensable these days. They are handy, easy to navigate and carry. I have 4-5 flash drives (1 – 4 GB) with me all the time. Thanks to my brother-in-laws who have been way too generous.

3. DIGITAL CAMERA: It has become an integral part of my living. I capture all the unsaid moments, sad and happy nature and anything that catches my eyes. It’s my best companion ever since I got it. Mine is Casio with extra zoom.

4. HAIR EPILATOR: For obvious reasons. I better do not go into details. *laughs*

5. DIGITAL PHOTO FRAME: A recent addition, a gift from my brother-in-law. I am loving the features – music, photo, movie. I just wish it had an eBook Reader!

6. And the most important gadget that I cannot live without right now is the HAIR STRAIGHTENER. I have to have all the time. I love my hair smooth, straight and silky and guess what this gives me a great look! I do not have a bad hair day anymore!

What about you guys?

ESC Pen….Press KEYBOARD to continue….!

It’s always great to write; to pen down thoughts, feelings, opinions, beliefs. It’s an inner voice which comes alive in the form of a pen..Err…keyboard. Many years back there was a tool called typewriter which used to be used by the authors of yesteryear. With the noise clickaty- clack clacking its way, pages and pages of stories used to get typed relentlessly.

Many years down the road, I sit and wonder what tool would be used by writers as a means to pen their thoughts. Would it be the blackberry? Would it be some magical device called may be…blueberry? Well, no one knows that. In fact, few years hence, authors/ writers won’t even bother to use a pen. A touch screen would suffice to toy along with the BlackBerry, and story would unfold! Voila!

It’s strange to believe how quickly technology gets onto people. How quickly and smoothly has a keyboard almost completely replaced the use of a pen. Today when I see the campaigns of some high profile pens over television, what comes to my mind is just one question- would anyone be bothering to buy themselves, or may be gift other a pen? A pen- which is used so less often in this era. A high profile pen has more or less remained as some status symbol belonging. It’s usage has most definitely dwindled, and the ink has most definitely dried up!

Why go far? The writer in me asks me to write all my blogs first on paper, redraft it, re-redraft it, till the final draft gets ready. But the quick fix solution thinker in me ponders—why go over and over and over such a lengthy process, when there’s a keyboard handy to do all the editing needed? And so with a straight contemplation I start off moving my fingers across the black keyboard….till I finish penning down the blog.

What prohibits me from writing with my pen? Is it the lack of willingness or a cloud of laziness? Well, that I don’t know exactly. Guess it’s a mixture of both—but one things’ sure. Due to this keyboard indulgence every single time, my pen is always perched up cozily in my pen stand. Till a few years back, half of my thoughts, which I desperately wanted to put down on paper used to get dwindled because half of my time used to go in looking for my pen, which used to lying about all over the place. But now that possibility is minimal. The pen nowadays is always where it ought to be—my brown colored cane pen stand. And my thought these days too by the way do not get warded off, because as soon as a thought buzzes into my head, I boot my PC and off I go- punching the keys relentlessly. So thoughts wise, its working well. but otherwise- i.e. the magic of the silence surrounding  writing, the effort seems to have gone a bit for a toss. When it was the pen, it was just the thoughts and me. But now when it’s keyboard, it is also the internet which is simultaneously open, along with the instant messenger- so some friend pings to say hi!, some long distance friend calls on to chat…..and amidst all this interactivity, I’m punching my way to finish the blog! So an element of undisturbed writing is just lost in the process…Anyways, but the “writer” in me is still struggling to juggle and put in a good blog along with the “ talker” in me who loves to catch up with friends. It’s a jugglery which I’m bent upon mastering, let’s see when that happens!

So coming back to the war of words between pen and keyboard, in today’s era, the keyboard has surpassed the pen in the most certain ways. That’s the truth of the moment. And this world full of technological upheavals, we indeed live for the moment. Because some spunky gadget might just be on its way to hit the market and our lives, which will vow to ease our typing efforts further on….So until we await for the prices of  Blackberry to fall within our purview and reach, let’s just also wait for some other similar fundu handy user friendly device which will surpass even the Blackberry and offer a variety of features.

The impatient writer in me cannot wait for the next thought to cross my mind’s path; but it can most certainly wait for some such magical device which will decipher my thoughts automatically, and decode those on my finger top/ palmtop/ blueberry….(or whatever that it’s name would be!)!

But till this happens, I guess I’ll have to go on with my keyboard!

Some everlasting inventions

The world has witnessed some astonishing discoveries  and inventions during the late 20th century and 21st centuries  like the transistor radio, VCR, audio cassette recorders cum players,  cell phones,  digital camera, i phone, FM radio, music system, CD/DVD player  etc.  The cell phone is an extraordinary gadget indeed.  It’s near impossible these days  to sight a person on the road  without a cell phone stuck to his/her ears.

We don’t know where the following disappeared  – gramophone with 76 rpm discs and 33 1/3 LP records, valve type radio, walk man,   film roll camera . Incidentally, I possessed three such  cameras. When I went to a studio to sell them off, the shop keeper said  that he himself  had  a couple of dozens  of them and  didn’t know how to dispose them off. So, I came home and distributed my stock of three among my grand children.  D’you know what they did;  threw them in the attic because all of them have a digital camera each.

‘Change’ seems to be the in-thing these days   and  we take to the new equipment  happily and as fast forgetting their predecessors. But wait.  Not quite. There are a few contraptions with us even today  that have not been abandoned for good. They would never become museum  pieces either  nor could they be dubbed as antics.

Take for instance, the most inexpensive material you find  in the market – Safety pin.  I can’t recollect when exactly the darned thing was designed; some 90 or 100 years back?  Well,  it’s an item still in demand and  are used for several purposes. Women can’t live without safety pins. Same goes for the ‘hair pin/hair clips’. Wonder why the modern technology hasn’t found  suitable  substitutes  for them.

Then  a device called, “Stethoscope.”  It is a  master piece of invention and  an inseparable companion to any doctor.  It is an insignia or logo  too for the medicos.  Once, due to heavy influx of people, the  General hospital closed its gates  for any visitor beyond a particular time.  My friend wanted to get in somehow to see his ailing father. He simply borrowed a stethoscope from a  regular physician  and walked in wearing it like a garland.  The   security guard didn’t stop him.  On the contrary, he saluted  the friend and showed him in  most courteously. So powerful a passport is  the stethoscope.  It can never be replaced, I imagine, by anything as cheap.

Once upon a time we used press buttons to button up your shirt frontage and cuff links to keep the  shirt cuffs  together.  Plastic buttons took up their slot.  When they first appeared in the market,  it was a breakable stuff. The washer men loved to break the little circular objects as if they detested their very sight. But nowadays, we find unbreakable buttons  and they have found a place in the Sun in the men’s  wardrobe. This is also an irreplaceable item.

Another invention that has stuck on to us  is the “Ball point pen”.        When people started communicating in written form, they used a quill and ink to write. That was some 200 years back. Then came the novelty – the fountain pen.   I remember as a school boy, I possessed at least 3 pens with a bottle of ink. But the ink then was a soluble material.  Pour out some drops of water and the  ink-based writing vanished without a trace.  What happened to the good old fountain pens?  Ball point pens have thrown them overboard. The first ball point was seen around 1959, I think.  I fell in love with the thing and bought dozens of them.  And the ball point pen today rules our writing  world.    We may include the BPP also among the list of everlasting inventions

The referee’s whistle used in games like football or hockey or basket ball  or some sports events or by a policeman,   is  another  brainchild that has not seen a successor.

The microphone and receiver  in a telephone. These are outstanding designs and are nearly 175 years old. But for the mic and receiver, we can never have any kind of communication or sound equipment  such as cell phone, telephone, radio or music system.

What about the  sewing needle and  the sewing machine? Similarly an iron box? Our dhobis still continue to use the charcoal fired  heavy duty box;  an electric iron is just an updated version of this old model, which is still going strong.

Can you think of anything else?  Share your ideas and views with other readers.

A piece of your persona!

Probable Reality in Recent future:  A mobile/ cell phone won’t merely remain a handy electronic gadget. It is going to grapple us so much, that it is going to occupy our minds, hearts and lives in entirety.

Cell phones are already an inevitable and intrinsic part of our lives. So much is the dependence and market penetration of cell phones, that to imagine life without one would turn out to be a futile exercise. Every other day, newer versions of cell phones are hitting the scene- new functionalities, new features, new services….. Larger storage space in smaller Sim cards (big surprises bundled up in small packages!) If one company introduces five add-ons, the other has to follow suit. After all, it’s all about competition and survival of the fittest.

With so much boom happening around cell phone market, time isn’t far when cell phone would become not just a device, not just a communication gadget, but a piece of your persona.

One has a lineup of things stored in one’s cell phone- there are songs, games, pictures, voice mails, messages and what not…

Imagine that you happen to misplace your phone somewhere….–

–It’s not just the address book or messages that would get lost in the process, but an individual who happens to find your cell phone somewhere, will end up knowing at least five things about your persona, by simply taking a look at your mobile phone. It is so much of our own lives that we scatter onto this piece of device that in the process we keep forgetting as to what would happen if tomorrow that device were not to remain with us accidentally.

Don’t know what to contemplate from all this? – Whether human beings have made electronic gadgets their ultimate slaves, or is it the vice-versa?

Because of an over dependence and over reliance on cell phones/ I pods/ blackberry, no doubt human race is growing exponentially (electronically & technologically), but somewhere down the line, there’s a price to pay- in terms of rendering one’s personality perhaps, opening up a facet of one’s life to the outer world unthinkably and subtly.

Few years hence, sociologists and psychologists, through extensive research will have to come up with some new terminologies like “cell phone psychology” or “cell phone sociology”! That time doesn’t seem far off, looking at the zooming rate at which cell phones are taking hold of lives, and the breakneck speed at which these sleek gadgets are influencing human race.

The Non Existent TalkTime!!!

It had been barely a month since Raghu was learning to be cell phone friendly. His elder sister Priya who lived in city had gifted him a sleek brand new cell phone, along with a SIM card of a popular cell phone service provider.

He couldn’t help but blush with joy with his new-found gift. He wasn’t very tech savvy though. He had hardly seen electronic gadgets so closely. After all, we are talking here of the time when cell phones hadn’t even entered semi rural markets big time.  Folks there were just getting to be cell phone friendly.

For one of his visit to Priya’s house in city, about two months since receiving the gift, she had instructed Raghu to carry his cell along, and so he had done as per her instructions. By then, he had begun using the cell phone, and had started getting familiar with the buttons and everything on the handset. She had also instructed him on how to recharge his cell phone, as he was a proud prepaid customer.

Now Raghu, just having entered city, stepped down from the bus and started hunting for rickshaw to take him to his sister’s house.  He was about to call up Priya to let her know that he had reached the bus stand and was heading home, when he realized that there was hardly any balance left in his prepaid card. He decided to recharge the cell from a nearby grocery store. And that itself was his first blunder. The grocery fellow asked him the amount of recharge which he wanted. Our simpleton didn’t know much about available talk times. He asked him to show the “talktime chart” for reference, but the grocery fellow didn’t have one. Now this was such a simple expectation of a customer, but it was long neglected by these service providers. Places where recharges are available do not always carry these kinds of handy charts, making the whole thing complicated.

So Raghu plainly and casually replied “ Give me Rs 100/- recharge”.

Now here’s the catch. There wasn’t any talk time of Rs. 100/- recharge available!. Yet the grocery fellow went ahead and recharged the poor guy’s cell, only for him to realize that he hadn’t got any recharge successful SMS even after waiting for 45 minutes. He waited and waited; but it was getting useless. He asked the grocery guy to refund his Rs 100/-, but that chap was stubborn and argued that from his end, he had recharged the cell.

Hoping against hope, Raghu reached Priya’s place and narrated his cell phone saga. She immediately got to work, and frantically tried calling up the customer service centre number of the service provider. When despite of this correct approach of putting through customer complaint, things weren’t getting done, the bro-sis duo straight away knocked the doors of the relationship centre located nearby. The customer relationship manager there gave them a patient hearing and handed over the email id of the western zone regional customer relationship head.

Smart Priya, who had very well gelled with city life, barged into a cyber café and typed out a blunt letter to the concerned authority about the flaws in the service provider’s prepaid recharge system. She wrote that if a customer is new to the cell phone technology, and is not aware about the various recharge talk time options, shouldn’t the recharge kiosks which have mushroomed at every nook and corner of cities, own up the responsibility of passing on the right information to the customer?

Since Raghu didn’t have his own email id, all the correspondence was routed through Priya. Ten days down the line there was a reassuring mail in Priya’s inbox from the concerned authority. The flaws were duly accepted, and the fellow’s cell phone number was granted recharge of Rs. 120/. Apologies accepted, the email read.

And so, this is how our straight out from small town place guy had his initial pangs of cell phone blues, as he was stumbling and learning to get cell phone friendly.

But he and Priya were fighters; real fighters. They fought their quiet battle through right channels, and got themselves justice. It wasn’t the question of Rs. 100/. The amount was immaterial. It is the spirit with which the folks handled the situation.

Perhaps it is these small town people who teach us urbanites a lesson or two sometimes. Had we polished, educated guys been in their shoes; perhaps we might not have followed up the matter so extensively. We would say,”Oh! It’s just a matter of Rs. 100/-. Why to bother for a meager amount like this”?

But they jolly well knew that they wanted to fight for every penny; especially so because the amount had totally gone in the pockets of the undeserved, without the practical benefit of it reaching to them.

….Today Raghu is a wiser man. His cell phone blues finally seem to be over. He learnt it all a different way, but today his confidence level is more than what it was the day he got down that dusty red bus which carried him to the city………And more importantly, today he runs a Cell Phone Recharge Kiosk in the quaint small town where he hailed from. Needless to say, he not only keeps a “Talk Time Chart” handy in his kiosk, but he has the recharge talktimes perfectly by-hearted for every service provider’s that he deals with. After all, did he not have first handed experience the bouts of Non Existent TalkTime!?

Now that’s what we say “ Building on one’s past mistakes, picking up and moving ahead”. Kudos Raghu!

6 Websites To Help You Get Started With Your New Electronic Gadgets

Holidays are here. With Christmas just gone and New Year is about to come, you might have received a lot of gadgets as gifts from your near and dear ones. Here we present a list of websites to help you from setting up of your gadgets to fixing it. Hell! some of these website might just teach you to build things from scratch.

  • How Stuff Works : This website has awful lot of tutorials and videos to help you understand the basics of any device. You can learn anything from changing a simple plug to replace motors of your grinder.
  • eHow : This site also has a huge collection of How Tos and they are damn easy to understand. Not only electronic you can learn about sports, parenting, art and lots more. Plus you can earn by becoming a write for them.
  • wikiHow : This website offers a lot of collaborated articles from repairing a computer to making a TV antenna. Its like an editable How-to manual but fully trustworthy with your gadgets.
  • Aardvark : It is said, when in doubt ask an expert. Aardwark does the same. It propagates your questions to the network to the self-proclaimed experts of the gadgets. This way only knowledgeable people get to answer your questions.
  • iFixit Teardowns : iFixit offers user contributed teardown guides for gadgets. These guides show gadget disassembly and photo documentation. Excellent for people who want to experiment with their stuff or for those who do not have product warranty.
  • Videojug : This site contains videos for almost everything mankind knows about. These videos are simple to follow and effective. It has a lot of video tutorials on iPod and iTunes.

facebook revamped….

Facebook has recently been testing a redesign of its user interface and has already rolled out the changes to a small number of users. Although subtle they are quite significant and make browsing more convenient.

Some of the tweaks that are prominent in the new design are :

  • The navigation elements that currently rest at the bottom of the screen have been moved to the left sidebar.
  • Your profile picture and status appear on the homepage which contains your feeds.

  • The search has been moved to the centre, just above the News Feed from its earlier position in the upper right corner. Also, it is now bigger than it was earlier by about 50% as you can see in the comparison shown below.

facebook new search

  • And lastly, in the upper left of the top navigation bar there are now three icons for your invitations, inbox, and notifications. These will show a small red badge whenever you have a new message. This gives you access to your most recent updates without leaving the homepage directly from a drop-down box as shown.

Apart from being appealing, these changes also improve the functionality by simplifying the design. The added emphasis on search is because facebook had recently improved its search in August but few have noticed and used the new features.  Also facebook wants more people to start using it because search has been a prominent and useful feature of other competitive services – like Twitter’s realtime search.

Remember, facebook is still testing this design and the actual changes might look different.

Save Yourself From Being Hacked

Earlier this year the Google Apps account of my other domain was hacked. Though I got it back in a few hours with help of some mails to Google but still it feels sad when an IT professional who brags so much about network security could not get to his account.

Here are some tips to save you from the same fate.

  • Use different passwords for different accounts. Everybody knows this but nobody cares to follow this. I know remembering a dozen cryptic passwords is very difficult but still I will suggest you to use different passwords for the accounts having sensitive information.
  • Associate your account with with your mobile phone. I don’t know about others but Gmail allows you to do so. You just need to login into your Google account and click the link in Personal Settings > Security > Change password recovery options. You’ll be asked to verify your Google password. On the “Recovering your password” page the add phone details. This way if your password gets reset you’ll get a sms instantly.
  • Check out your IP Address. Gmail and several other mail service providers tell you the last IP from which your account was accessed. If you see any funny IPs, change your password right away. If you don’t know your IP, go to ipmango.
  • If Possible take regular backups of your mails. You can use any desktop mail client to download the mails and keep in your computer or you can online backup services like BackupMy. BackupMy can create a snapshot of your mails, twitter accounts, photos, blogs etc. at a very nominal price. You can get a trial for free though.
  • Do not use your administrator account for day-to-day work. This tip applies for Google Apps users and of course to other app users as well. Admins should never use their administrative account for general mailing and other work. Instead create a normal user account and use it for regular work.
  • Use https instead of http. If your mails carry very sensitive data then I will suggest you to switch to https. This will encrypt your mail protecting it from packet sniffers.
  • Check your Security Question. Usually people keep some cryptic password but their security question is too simple to guess. For example, many people keep the security question as the name of their pet or first school. These thing can be easily known by your friends and relatives. If you are an active person on internet these details can be provided by Google itself.

If you are hacked, contact the support immediately otherwise there is a risk that your other accounts might be compromised.

Iphone Version Of Crack

How many times have you downloaded an app from the App Store specifically a game, played it a few times and then just stopped playing it, plenty right!! Same here, but once in a while comes along a game so damn addictive you could just go on playing it forever and never feel bored. In the early days of computer Tetris and held that covetedposition, but now with the mobile platform explosion, particularly Apple “Doodle Jump” occupies that place (at-least for me). Doodle Jump is a pretty straightforward game you have a weird creature that keeps jumping and you have to point it in the right direction so that it lands on a platform and not in empty space using the accelerometer. As you keep going up, the lower platforms keep disappearing, you can get a boost using a Helicopter cap or a JetPack or just jumping on a spring and sometimes strange creatures like bats come in the middle. Then you have to shoot by just tapping anywhere on the screen. You can submit your scores on Twitter or on Facebook, view your friends scores, see weekly, daily and all-time high scores. One of the things I really like about this game is a good level of difficulty so that you don’t win easily and a blue/red line with a name besides it is like an achievement line to show how high someone else has gone. So far I’ve hit a max of 57,000.

As of yesterday Lima Sky has posted that they have crossed 1 million downloads. That makes their earning a cool $700k after Apple deducts its earnings. That fact is pretty cool considering Lima Sky is a two man team-of two brothers.

Keep Doodling.