Saturday, December 23, 2006

Almost settled in bay area - Moving was a big pain - Moving guide

After three weeks of initial settling period I am feeling now that I am adjusted in bay area (aka Silicon Valley). Few things which I have observed and would like to share about moving is as under.

1) When you decide to move from one city to other in US either because you are changing your job or some other reason, movers and packers is a big cost. If your company is paying for you then you don't have to worry (not true all the time). Sometimes you might have to join early within a month and movers usually take more than 25 days of notice. So ultimately you have to either go for Uhaul or Budget to move your stuff. If you are doing by your own, don't go by the name of U-haul (I was under the impression that Uhaul is cheapest but i was wrong) and their big printing of 19.99/day on side of their truck. I found Budget to be $100 less than U-haul and confirmed this with one of my friend. Further if you do online booking you get 10% off for budget truck rental. In now way I want to do marketing for budget and I am not getting anything for this but I wanted to bring some important points when people move.

2) Secondly when you do booking for your truck, please take insurance from them. I would recommend to take full insurance (I was very luck in this regard). I have never driven a big truck and it was my first time and when i went to book this truck for myself i was quite hesitant to take insurance and was little confident of my driving ability and the person out there suggested me to take their collision insurance and i was still have liability covered from my car's insurance. I agreed with them and started driving and it was a peaceful drive from Reno to San Mateo. It is always said that at least one thing should go wrong when you do something big or something for the first time. When i went to return my truck, I need to refill the gas and then return so I went to the gas station and then there was a big truck already there and I was trying to be careful to stay away from that giant truck. When i was making turn to park near the pump, side (cap of my fuel tank) of my truck got shovel into the protecting red post which is kept near the sides of the pump. After juggling my truck for a while I was able to take out my truck. After parking this truck on the side, I called budget and told them about this incident and then they have sent their AAA guy to help me out. I was then not confident to drive after this incident. Here are some pictures which I have taken on that day.

The round post to which I have hit my truck is shown below (I have take this picture because gas station guy took my information and wanted me to repair it but at the discretion of 76 gas station. But since i have not damaged anything except my truck I guess that is why they have not contacted me till now. TOUCHWOOD!!)

So the crux of the above story is take insurance and in fact take full insurance from your rental truck agency.

3) You have to go through the pain of changing addresses everywhere.
a) Forward your mails from old address to new address. Go to USPS
b) if you are a immigrant in this country then you have to fill AR-11 form and you can get it from here
c) all your banks, credit card, investments accounts.

d) Get a new license (if you are moving to other state)
e) Get new registration for your car (this is valid if you move to other state). I hate doing this because of the two reasons, first is we have to go through this pain again and second is we have to pay for it again. I was surprised to find that Nevada State has no law of refunding your car registration or transferring registration to other state. I have more than 8 months of registration remaining and they said that they can not give me refund. I then asked them how about charging car owners month by month then the customer representative tell me that it will incur extra cost to them. Then i told her then there is big big flaw in this rule and to save your cost you are taking our money for free with no provision of refund or transfer of registration. I hope this thing will be better in few years.

4) When you move out from your old place cancel all of your utilities like cabel, electricity, telephone (you don't need to do this because now a days they do provide transfer) and so on.

5) At the same time at your new place you have to order for all these utilities.

6) Change your insurance (if you are moving out of state). I got a big hike in my insurance premium. In California as a whole insurance is quite high and further if you move towards the city (San Francisco) then start praying. Well mine got doubled. Shhh!! (Please don't ask for my driving record)

I have covered major things only (must have forgotten something) for moving. You are most welcome to add it.

So finally after all these dramas I am feeling now that I am almost settled. Mind you bay area is very expensive and if you are moving here be prepared to drive in bad traffic. In my previous work, i had to drive only 4 miles and I was to drive that in 5 minutes. But here now a days, I am driving for 13 miles and going through that most famous highway here 101.

Nevertheless, I am happy to be here. I am enjoying my work and weather.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Googlemap for India

Recently I read that now Google has added India in their map database. In other words the details about various streets, locations et all.

This is a location for India and then you can drill down where you want to go.

Below is the picture capturing my home (a red circle if you look at the top part of the image).

Sunday, December 17, 2006

P2P streaming - SOPCAST

Stream Over P2P (peer to peer) is a client (plugin available for Internet Explorer ) is a media broadcast system. I like the ease with which it allows users to deploy thier own broadcast and embed it on their website and share it with the world.

You can download SOPCAST player from here.

My favorites are all the sports channel.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

A movie on Call CenterAQ

We all have problems with one or the other utility service like cell phone, cable, credit card and finally when FAQ's and online help doesn't work we do call 800 or 888 number. Most of the businesses have deployed their call center in low cost labor country like India, Philippines, Africa etc.

Here is a great spoof on how call center business works.
Call Center Movie

Well in reality this is not the case, call center operations are flourishing well in all the above mentioned countries and bringing in great business. But sometimes we do get frustrated if we get a really bad experience.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Google Reader - Facelift, Updated, feature changes

I was list of blogs and today i have observed weird behaviors in the google reader. Even after reading some items it was not marking it as read. I have to refresh it few times and some of the times it was working and sometimes it was not.

When you click on the folders you have created, it shows the latest blog added in your reading list. I don't know why they are implementing this features, as previously there were showing the number of unread post and which was very obvious way to read individual post from the blogs. But now they are aggregating all the blogs and posts...arrrgg..

Well i will see what they will roll up in next release which will come up shortly as I am presuming that they must be testing new features now and that is why all these discrepancies. Further I can't blame and nobody can and that is the advantage of keeping your software in beta for a long time.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Moving for Good - Last day today at work

I have decided to move to bay area to pursue other opportunity and leave my current company PC-Doctor Inc.

Today is my last day and I am going to miss my product on which I was working for last 20 months. Further, I am going to miss all my colleagues along with whom I was working closely. I have learned so many things out there from my team mates and manager, have gone through all phases of Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC), Agile Programming Practice and this place has taught me how to be a pragmatic programmer.

I am joining Actuate Corp. from next Monday. I am really excited about starting there.

So I will be in silicon valley and will be able to go to many seminars and talks which I was not able to from Reno NV.

Adios Reno!!

Monday, November 27, 2006

yahoo group - search server is busy

I was very very busy in some personal project and other things (I will write about that very soon) and now I guess I will have some time to write here.

Today I was looking in one of my subscribed groups in yahoo groups and after firing a search query, SEARCH SERVER gave me the result.

But after browsing through few more queries, when I tried to go to next page I got the following error message.

    This is first time i have ever got error from any search engine / groups etc. Many things can be observed from the the above.

  • The yahoo group's architecture runs different server for performing different task.

  • I am presuming that they must be running n number of servers to run one application (Yahoo groups in this case) and different components of this application runs on different server.

  • This gives us a idea how to write scalable application.

I will write more on scalable application and the way to deploy it later.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Google Search Result - Number of pages for any search

I was playing with google search and found some interesteting things about the maximum number of result displayed for any search.

Google search result displays maximum 1000 results i.e. 100 pages for any search. This is also not one step process. It will display search result less than 100 (in 70's, 80's or 90's) for the given query and in the last page, it will say "Click here to see omitted results". When user clicks that it will show those omitted pages but won't include everything from their repository.

For example, if you search for the word "binary" using the following this query it will display number of results for this query and what exactly it showing i.e.

Results 1 - 10 of about 207,000,000 for binary

It gives impression as if it will show all the pages where it has found binary word. They do have all the web pages in their repository. But here to show the number of occurance of a particular work is fetched using some kind of dictionary data structure.

If you are patient enough and don't get tired clicking some hyperlinks then follow to the last record and you should get somethign like this for any search.

Now if you click the omitted result link, it will take you to the first page according to relevance i.e. page ranking for a given search result. If you again click to next till you hit the following

As can be seen from the above image, it will show maximum 1000 results only.

Few things to note:

  • It uses the fact that if user is not able to find what he is looking for in first 100 pages then there is not need to show all the results

  • Google does have big distributed file systems with Big Table, Big File and Map Reduce et all and using these components records are fetched quickly. They do huge dictionary and n-gram database and many data structures to give users results quickly using their page ranking and relevance system. All these are used togather to show first 1000 results for any query which makes it really faster.

  • They do cache every result and query so they can cache good amount of data structure as Google is used by gazillions of people.

  • They do have plenty of data so only thing is now judiciously using these huge data and showing results from different perspective. They have categorized these data in differet buckets like jobs, base, health, school and so on.

There are some really good documents available on the net about internals of their file system i.e. Google File System, Big Table, Big Files, Map Reduce and the first paper in which they have mentioned how Google actually works. So if you are interested google for these documents and you will be able to get in some knowledge of their infrastructure.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Google Maps Flight Simulator

Today i came across this really cool hack for google maps -> Google Maps Fligh Simulator.

It allows you to pick the city from where you want to take your flight and then drive your plane with arrow keys. It also has a link to add your city in it.

Enjoy and play with it.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Snap - Another Search Engine

Snap another search engine in this heavily crowded search engine market. It is claiming that what is offered in market is not good or not what user wants to see and they are the one who have understood what user wants and provides them with fast, accurate and relevant results.

They have mentioned in their site that all big search engines use Text-In Text-Out method for searching and usually end user ends up with the following experience

1. Type a keyword into a search box and hit enter
2. Wait a bit, then
3. get a list of 20 or so text results split into non-paid and sponsored links
4. Proceed to decipher each link and excerpt (does this site have what I’m looking for? Is it spam?)
5. Click on a link and go to the site. If you’re lucky, that’s it.
6. But most of us aren’t lucky, so you go back to your results page and begin the process again.
7. And repeat as often as needed for as long as your patience can muster. (Most searchers don’t get off the first page of results, even though we’re comforted that there are millions of results for some of our queries…)
8. If this doesn’t yield the result you’re looking for, you probably go back to the original query and try a new modification.
9. And repeat the process again as needed.

And their search engine is different in the following way

  • Quick visual dispaly of results preview. (On mouse over ajax request or on key down or on select ajax request and getting data in right pane

  • Activity anticipating user's intent (Autocomplete on keyup by sending ajax request on key up)

  • Direct interactivity with your search (As search result and web page contents are in two panes this can be achieved without much hassle)

  • Better relevance through successful past result (Implementing voting and ranking system taking user input

Well i don't feel providing such features can embrace scalability, relevant result and user satisfcation. First thing which they need to think about providing relevant result using some technique like page ranking, content filtering, using anchor text etc. Secondly and most importantly think about scalability. Big search companies have enough money and infrastructure in place which has allowed them to have their search engine scable over the period of time.

I would love to see how they grow from where they are now. All the best to them.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Listen PDF documents rather than reading

Sometime you want to listen to some document while you are busy doing something. It is possible with adobe acrobat reader (I have tested the following shortcuts for version 7.* and it works fine)

Ctrl+shift+b - to hear the entire Document
Ctrl+shift+v - to hear the page
Ctrl+shift+c - to resume
Ctrl+shift+e - to stop

Well the reading is not great but it can do the job if you want something humming while you are performing some other task. Nice way of multitasking :)
The reading is more like running commentary which we observe in some sports.

Software Configuration Managment - All about source control

In my opinion every software developer and a computer science or engineering student who writes software programs should know about Software Configuration management or SCM.

It helps in maintaining your code base for each program over a period of time. You can always go back to your older version or see how you have refactored your source code over the period of time. It helps in learning agile development methodology for software development which is an essence of writing great software product.

Eric Sink is writing online book describing about source control.

Some of the free available SCM tools are
1) Subversion
2) Perforce

I won't recommend to use VSS even if you get it for free.

Other SCM tools which i have used for a while is Clear Case by IBM (formerly rational).

Monday, July 31, 2006

Javascript Prototype Library for AJAX - Synchronous Request

I am a big fan of Prototype library and using it for a while with excellent results for most of my AJAX work.

Most of the time i was making asynchronous request to get the response. Today i was trying to make a synchronous request using the following in my request page

<TITLE> New Document </TITLE>
<script src="./src/js/prototype.js" type="text/javascript" >
<script language="JavaScript" type="text/javascript" >

function makeRequest() {
var myAjax = new Ajax.Request(
method: 'post',
asynchronous: false,
onComplete: displayResponse

function displayResponse(xmlhttp)
alert("Am i coming here ");
xmlhttp = null;



< href='javascript:makeRequest("abc")' >Click me


My response page is simple php page echoing some message which is. testResponse.php is as under


echo "What i am sending from here";


With this request setting for my AJAX call i.e. synchronous request is made with asynchronous request set to false. I am not able to fire onComplete method but when i change asynchronous request to true I am able to fire the function registered for my onComplete event.

Then i started looking in my livehttpheader whether request is getting fired at all or not. You guessed it right, request is not going from javascript.

I was not sure is it a bug in prototype library or I am doing something wrong. Later i found that i was passing parameters incorrectly. I have to change the way i was passing parameter i.e.

asynchronous: 'false'

and VOILA it works!!

So it was my editor which was showing keyword when it typed false without single quote and i have kept it like that :)

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Ruby on Rails

I found this short and succint but complete presentation of what Ruby on Rails is. For beginners this is very useful to give them a head start.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Hellodeo - Voice message with expression

Hellodeo is an online video recorder with voice.

It is very simple to use. You just need a webcam and go to their homepage. It will detect your webcam and get permission to use your system resources (mic and USB port i.e. webcam) and then you record your video. Start recording and see it there itself after it is recorded and if liked it then submit it. It will be shown on their latest and greatest video and you will get a code snippet for your video. Here is my testing video.

I see multifold uses of this service -

  • Voice message along with video for anybody. You can then send this video via email, through home page, put it on your blog etc. While you are on vacation you can leave out on vacation video, welcome video on blog or homepage, demonstration of some product etc.

  • I would love to see this getting intergration in mobile devices. So it will be expression + voice message

  • Instant streaming of live event. I am not sure what is the maximum length of video that a user can record. But can be used to generate revenue

I liked this product and would try to use it and enhance this service or create something out of it. By the way did i tell you, i was thinking about it a month back but again I am late on designing and implementation.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Fix for z-index bug for IE 6.* (Select box is always on top)

Select boxes in IE are always on top of any other div or pop up windows or other elements. Even after setting z-index for select box as -1 and z-index for div tags which holds pop up window as 100 it does not work for IE.

Here is more about this bug.

They have fixed this error in IE 7 which is in beta version now.

Here is a work around or fix for this bug.

The fix works really well in IE and firefox (it was showing properly before also).

Fix for VBScript Error: Invalid procedure call or argument: 'Mid'

After long long time i have touched VBScript and was trying to traverse string character by character. I came across some weird error or may be i have not read VBScript for long long time.

When you try to traverse string character by character, never start with index 0 otherwise you will get the above error

Invalid procedure call or argument: 'Mid'

Along with this you will get argument 2 is invalid or something like that.

To traverse string character by character in VBScript use the following snippet of code:


inputString = "String traversal in VBScript";
stringLength = len(inputString)

For i = 1 To stringLength
mychar = Mid(inputString, i, 1 )
WScript.Echo "My character is "+mychar


This is one of the way to traverse string in VBScript.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

India's march to become developed country

Tonight i came across this article by Michael Parekh a well known figure in blogosphere.

If above article interests you then you can read more about it here

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Technorati's Event, Review, Contact search

Technorati is the leader in blog search arena. Now they are starting searching contacts, events and review from the blog and show it to the user.

To get your contact information searched by your first name or last name you need to create hCard. Here is mine

Dipesh Khakhkhar
PC-Doctor Inc.

9805 Double R Blvd.


Similarly they have started event and review search. More on this tomorrow.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Reservations in Education

Well for a change today i m writing something other than technology.

Today i came across this interview of Mr. Arjun Singh Humam Resource and Development Minister of India by Mr. Karan Thapar.

I have gone through this (during my engineering admission to VNIT) and objected reservation in education from the begining but in vain. Why don't they help these OBC's, SC's and ST's with money rather than providing reservations to them in the field of education. We need more qualified people in all IIM's, IITs and other medical institutions. If they are qualified and have calibre to compete with rest of the people then they should take this reservation.

In one hand we talk about modern India and developing India and when I see things like this I think it will take another 25 years to see the picture of Modern India. By providing reservations to them, they are discriminating against them and in long term it is not going to benefit them and the country.

If they want to do their betterment please allow reservation for them in sports and ask them to compete there, why only academia?

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Regular update of your firefox extensions

I am thinking to write a script which will update extensions in firefox which have updates available for them.

I constantly see this problem of firefox memory leaking and CPU consumption where there is some update for the extension available and i have not updated, there is a huge memory leak and everything slows down.

I am thinking to write a script which will be invoked only when there is a update available i.e. comet technology (server push technology).

Monday, April 17, 2006

Firefox memory consumption

Yesterday i have updated my Firefox to and after only one day I am tired of the way it is eating my CPU and memory. Have a look at this.

As you can see there are no tabs in the firefox instance still it is eating 90 MB of memory which is quite unusual. Further it has high affinity for CPU and on an average it is consuming it for 100%.

Is it me only or everyone is observing this behaviour.

I am now using IE very reluctantly but it is very true that it is very important to have less features and simple implementation instead of complex features with complex implementation.

Wake up Firefox !!

I found out today that it is not the new version of firefox which was eating my CPU and memory but some (WengoPhone, Loki and Sameplace) extensions which i had installed long back and have not updated. I have removed those extensions and my FF is working fine now.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Quece - Conversational Search Engine

Quece is an avatar of search engine with different nuance. It is conversational search engine.

As shown in the image above I made a search on google and i had a converstaion with it and gradually narrowed down what I was looking for. Initally it provides with the list of results matching the search keyword by categorizing it into exact match and relative match. It then asks another question like "Are you interested in news/google news, 2005 google, business solutions or engine/engine google?" which helps in narrowing down what we are looking for. In other words, it tries to translate user's thoughts directly into a highly accurate search request. As user clarifies what exactly he is looking for, the results get updated and conversation is shown to the user.

It gives an impression that user is dealing with the engine in natural language and trying to make human computer interaction natural.

Quece is in beta stage and seems quite promising considering the accuracy and the way it deals with the user request. I am not sure how rich is their database indexing, it needs to be tested for many domains and covering many areas. Overall good product and I will defintely watch it as it gradually matures.

Friday, March 31, 2006

Gliffy - Online Diagram Editor

Gliffy is an online diagram editor which is amazingly slick and easy to use. Below is the diagram created by gliffy team to show its capability.


  • Shapes- it supports all the basic shapes i.e. lines, rectangles, ellipse, square etc. and all the flow chart shapes.

  • Share capability- It allows to publish the diagram, collaborate, print the diagram, save the diagram in SVG format or JPEG format. It all

  • Editor capability- It supports all the keyboard shortcuts ctrl + c, ctrl + z etc. It attaches properties for each object on the grid ( it shows the grid to create symmetrical diagram). These are the properties to bold the text, change the font, alignment, justify, color etc. For other shapes it allows expansd/collapse, coloring etc.

  • Revision history - It has source control system embedded in it, shows various versions for the currently opened document. It provides the user with a capability to go back to previous version.

I have created a simple diagram using gliffy which is published here.

I am highly impressed by Gliffy's slick implementation and highly shophisticated features but it has some minor flaws like
1) Saving cookies for the current page and login etc. so that when user comes back they should be directed there.
2) Undo worked for last 3 changes only for me.
3) When clicking on versions instead of showing hour glass, show loading message in dark color or some spinning image.

But overall this is really good replacement for expensive tools like visio which many people (including developers, student) need to create basic diagrams. This tool does this job nicely. Great work guyz.

Mobbed today!!

Well not really but Mobber capture who is online on which page.

You can see slider below my blog's heading showing different images and avtars and which page they are on right now. It allows user to click on each image to see their profile, chat with them privately. It also allows to create a chat room where group of people can join and chat togather.

Sweet implementation using AJAX and very simple but innovative concept. To add this bar to your page add the following script right below the heading.

Enjoy mobbing !!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Alternative to yahoo finance - Google finance

Google has launched tonight it's finance site which is a great alternative to MSN's and yahoo's finance site.

Google as usual does the same thing differently and in a much cleaner and better way. Google finance has the following features.

  • Search engine which is the most important forte of google is embedded in this product which can be used to get stock by their tickers, company name, sector name, specialization etc.

  • It stores your portfolio, you can add tickers to your portfolio. It imports tickers from your portfolio if you have created in your personalized google home page.

  • The chart is implemented in a very neat way (similar to google maps). You can drag your mouse on the chart and it will go backwards to those days. The new feature along with it is the news headline associated on those days changes along with your mouse movement. Very sleak implementation using AJAX.

  • It shows company facts, company summary , company financials, management, related companies and their stock prices, blog posts for that company, disucssion board and more resources. It provides users to start discussion on each of the stock provided the post abides all the rules laid out by google.

  • People will have more alternative than sticking to yahoo or msn or any other site.

The only thing which I would love to see here is real time quotes for free :)

Friday, March 17, 2006

Jabphone - Jabber to phone gateway

Jabphone is a gateway to make phone calls using Jabber messaging clients (Google talk, gaim, Kopete, PSI etc.) and to SMS to mobile phone (cellular) anywhere in the world.

Jabphone is fully compliant in Google talk as of now. To use jabphone you need to add as your friend using add friend button on your instant messaging client.

As you you open your account you get a chat messaging window on your system. To place a call, write "call " and accept the voice chat request by Examples: call 1-418-555-1212, call 33
To send a SMS, write "sms "
Please see below the chat window which appears when you double click on it in your messenger.

If you check your account initially it will give you $0.33 free credit to make calls or to use it for SMS. It provides buttons for credits for 5, 10, 25 and 100 dollars respectively. It shows the usage of your credit by showing call history in which it shows destination, date and duration for which calls are made. It also provides list of rates for different countries across the world.

I see this as a really great application to make calls from computer to phone anywhere in the world. I find SMS as a great feature which allows people to use computer to send SMS rather than using tiny keyboard on cell phone to do the same.

Great product.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Fixya - Support for products

Fixya is a web application which can be used to find support for any kind of consumer product like digital camera, printer, laptop etc.

Fixya aggregates all support information that from the internet and stores it into their database by categorizing on the basis of manufacturers, products etc. At the same time, Fixya's knowledgebase is updated by a live community of users who share their experiences with support problems and solutions. It uses rating system whch allows users to find the best solution for every consumer product problem and even offer a new solution.

In their homepage Fixya shows most common problems and their best solutions, problems which are not solved, top experts who shares their expertise in solving or supporting some product's problem. The best thing about that support information is that it is based on the experiences of users rather than the manufacturer.

Megite - A intelligent newspaper

Megite is the newspaper for anyone interested in what's happening right now by intelligently uncovering the most relevant items from auto discovered news sites and weblogs.

It gathers all the important news(technical, entertainment, politics, deals, sports etc.) from the web using keywords, OPML file, blog for each category and uses ranking algorithm to show the relevant items without duplication on it site.

I am using their small widget to show top news (technology) from megite on my blog (look at my sidebar).

Monday, March 13, 2006

LabelR - way to tag blogger's blog

Labelr is a plugin for blogger's blog so that user can tag their post. All the tags will be categorized and will be shown as a category (this name is customizable, for instance we can name it as Tags) in the side bar.

As you see on the sidebar below the google ads I have one more template Category where all the labels which I will create will be displayed. It allows user to file your particular post under those labels. So when you will click on one of the label in the category all the posts which are filed under that category or tag will show up.

It is a nice and handy utility to categorize your post on blogger so that later it will be useful to get post which has relevant labels associated with it.

KeepVid - For keeping (downloading) popular videos on your system

KeepVid is a web based video download tool which can download vides from most of the famous video hosting sites like google video, youtube, metacafe and so on.

It is very simple to download any video. Follow these steps.

  • Go to the video hosting site, search for your video and get the URL of the video from your search result (by clicking on it, you will get the url on the address bar).

  • Copy this URL and paste it into KeepVid download textbox and click download.

  • It gets you the link for downloading the video. Right click on the link and click save link as and it will open the save as dialog box. Change the extension from .php to .flv

You will need FLV player to play the downloaded video. If you don't want to download FLV player then you should have VLD media player.

It is very useful tool to download video from number of sites. Right now it supports 40 odd video hosting sites including all the biggies.

TripConnect - Share your trip to help others

TripConnect allows people to advice others about different destinations across the world. It allows user to create group or join groups to get advice about hotels, destination to go, places to eat etc.

It is a nice way to share information about different places where you have been to or where you want to go. Right now this service is in beta and not very clean. It is full of advertisements to get ad revenue.

While giving ratings to the places it allows to give rating to hotel, resturants but the interfaces it clumsy. It opens up another window when we need to add information about resturants and hotels, not purely web 2.0

It needs lot of refinement before it is publicly available for masses to use.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

My ether buttons so that people can reach me

I am testing ether about which i did write sometime back here . After we create our account in ether, it provides us with the following buttons (and links) which we can stick it on our website, blog, signature (email) etc.

1-888-MY-ETHER ext. 01308323

Call Me

These buttons allows seller to publish their services through different ways. I have attached one on my blog too now.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

3Bubbles are sprouting on my blog

I have integrated 3bubbles on all my posts. For those who don't know what I am talking about have a look here .

3bubbles facilitates live conversataion on your blog or website. This application is still in beta phase, but already people have started writing greasemonkey scripts to adapt it as per their requirements. So consider this situation, when someone wants keep a watch on 3bubbles chat on his blog or site, get a notification when someone joins a chat like the way we get email notification in google alert, here is the solution by Social twister . Chat watcher is not working as of now but will keep a eye on it.

I also have live chat link on my blog at the end of each post.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Online Microsoft Office - ThinkFree

As we know that web2.0 is sweeping across the Internet with rich user interface application, here comes one more player ThinkFree who has integrated power of Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft PowerPoint.

Following are the features of OnlineThinkFree application:

  • It gives the power to the user to create new word, excel and powerpoint documents and save it in their folder, so that they can access it from anywhere, anytime.

  • It does allow user to create their own folder and organise their documents as per their need. It allows moving or copying of documents and folders.

  • It allows user to edit and modify these documents whenever needed.

  • It can upload documents in any of these formats.

  • Users can post their documents to their blog with one click.

  • Users can keep their document public or private.

Few more features like sending file and properties of the document will be implemented soon. This application takes some time initially to load or create new document as it interacts with JVM (Java Virtual Machine) installed on the system and creates some stuff in it. It uses JVM's cache functionality so that next time it loads application (word, powerpoint and excel) quickly.

Currently it is in beta version and allows user to create their account with 30 MB of free storage. This is a killer application, allowing user to live without having expensive software on their system. Users are not needed to upgrade their paid software on their machine instead use this kind of application wherein they can have almost the same advantages of desktop software.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Earn money to Talk!

Wait wait don't start blabbering, well who knows someone likes your blabbering also, so get paid to talk. When i say talk it is a talk in the form of consultancy, advices, skills which you sell like writing news column, writing blog, writing research for someone or doing homework for someone.

Check this out here. Here you can create your customer account.

Following are the steps for creating your sellers account. Right now only selected beta testers can have sellers account and rest will have customers account.

  • Sellers will get a toll free number like 1-888-my-ether with a unique 8 digit extension. So when customer call at this number it will be redirected to the contact number which a seller sets up during seller registeration. It can be home, office or cell number

  • Seller quotes his/her rate either on the basis of hour or minutes.

  • It allows seller to set call timings during which they will talk, so its upto them when do they want to provide their services. It will be easy to set timings either from web or from cell phone.

  • Next step is to publish your ether phone number whereever you want like blog, website, business card, school's notice board etc.

  • Get money when you recieve call from someone. When someone calls you they must have already paid money to you. Isn't it cool ! So talk with them and offer services to them. Money payment is through Ether and this is what is their business model. Sellers publish their services through Ether and ether charges customers 15% for the services offered through them by the service providers (sellers). 15% they are charging for setting up this infrastructure, a nice web.20 distributed application to use and convenience and effort put on to make this viable. Well it includes the charges they have to pay to the credit card company if customers uses credit card.

This application from Ether seems very promising and have great potential for on demand services to be provided by the people to the people through them.

Great work!

Here is my Sergey Brin!

For those of us who have not got chance to play with Larry Page(s) yet, no big deal we will spend time playing with Brin(s).

Don't wait, make your Brins and publish it on the web and share it with your friends.

My Brin is here.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Excel and Powerpoint on the web

irows is a web based online spreadsheet application which allows user power of Microsoft Excel.

Features of irows

  • Manage our data online and access it from anywhere anytime

  • It allows sharing of data so that it can be editer by others. Very useful for shared expense list amongst roommates, friends, etc. Its a great collaboration tool.

  • We can draw calculator, charts (pie, line, bar etc), graphs for the data in the sheet.

  • Import data from excel and CSV(Comma Separted File)

I have uploaded one of my excel file out here.

Thumbstacks is a online making and sharing presentations tool.

Features of Thumbstack

  • Create it once access it from anywhere anytime

  • Allows editing, saving, modifying, using themes and templates. It has WYSIWYG editor with rich text and drag and drop support. It support loading images also.

  • Only needs a browser to use it and they say that is always available at user end. Supports all the major platforms IE, firefox, Opera Konqueror etc.

  • We can take print outs in the form of handouts as we take in Microsot Powerpoint application (Like 6, 4 or 2 screens in one page).

Here is the screenshot of the presentation created by me.

Its very slick even in the alpha stage and I would love to see in future release following features which will definitely make it one of the best online sharing and publishing tool for the people
- Support for animation
- Support for sound and video.
- Rich set of drawing tools.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Google Page Creator

Google has started new service which allows user to create their own webpage and publish it. Check this out here.


  • It allows user to create only single page.

  • Can create upto 100 MB of pages.

  • Page Editor is provided to modify look and layoout of the page. As soon as first page is created it sets up a homepage where you can manage you pages.

  • Quick, easy and simple way to publish pages on the web which are searchable from google search engine as well as other search engines.

Right now there is no provision to publish or create the whole website but with proper linking one can create whole website.

The addresses for the pages will be like

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Online Movies Catalouge

If you need to maintain an online catalouge of movies which are

  • Your favorites

  • You want to see

  • Want to share it with others and link it to your blogs

use AJAXILICIOUS. Its very very simple to use, type the name of the movie and hit enter, it looks up in IMBD and populates the list of the movies matching the name you have entered. Then you can eitehr add it to your collection or view more details about the movie and then add it. You can later remove movies from your collection. Below is the screen shot after taken adding few movies in the list.

I would like it to have the following:
1) Giving your own rating or sharing rating with everyone and not use IMDB rating.
2) Categorize movies in the catelouge on the basis of years.
3) Tag information like director, actor, actress etc.

Lets hope it will incorporate more features in future.

Digg + = DiggLicious

Yes, DiggLicious is a perfect blend of two cool web2.0 websites (products). For those of you who have not digged and have not had a taste of delicious, Digg is a technical news site and (bought by yahoo) is a online bookmarking(storing favorites) site.

Digglicious brings the power of these two sites at one place as it continuously updates what is been digged and tagged(bookmarked) on the net.


  • Read the stuff which is been tagged and digged most by the users so that we don't need to wander around the net for the news which we like to read.

  • Tag it into your account.

  • Great use of webservice and presenting the content in lightweight AJAX implemented single page website.

Nice stuff.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

My review of IE7

Writing after a long time and at this odd hour :)

Well, i was watching a song "Ab muje raat din" by Sonu Nigam on youtube using Firefox and there were many other tabs opened at the time. FF(firefox) 1.5 and higher consumes lot of memory and eats up my CPU time like anything. Today the same thing was featured in about slashdot Firefox memory leak.

It was caching lot of pages and because of that video rendering was very show and interruptive. I love tab browsing and since IE7 beta is available so i thought to put my hands on it and i did install it and started using it and found it a good browser over all.
Things which i have liked about IE7
1) Tabbed browser functionality.
2) It has print functionality which won't truncate page now.
3) Quick view tabs will show browser windows which are opened in tab in one page and user can select whichever he wants again to view in that page as a full page browser window. It allows to close them also.

4) Subscriting to RSS feed. A button gets enabled when the IE7 browser detects that the site has RSS feed subscription in it.
5) Filtering phising website either by putting it in the options or checking it onlilne everytime.
6) Most of the functionality can be accessed through toolbar buttons.(messengers, hello can be accessed)
7) They have put one button to add new tab with click. Well for computer savy this can be done by using control tab but for normal user they won't know the short cut and MS product always tries to make life simpler for others.
8) Adding addons to IE browser.

Things which IE7 beta is missing and which i will like it to have.

1) Error messages when something fails. I tried to upload the quick tabs window in bmp format which was 4.21 MB using IE it never told me whether it is able to get some error from the server (
2) Javascript error console, debugger etc.

Till now it seems good to me. I have installed it on my computer now, I will do the same at my work tommorow and check out more about it.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

I owe you !! No no, you owe me!

School days are great memory when you recall it. One of the most intriguing and troublesome task is sharing things with roommates. People usually share common stuff like food, drinks, electricity bill, phone bills etc. and keep a note of it in some paper or retain all the bills so whenever accounts are settled they refer to those old twisted paper and bills.

IOWEYOU has simplified this task by having online sharing calculator. Here it works in a group, users will be sharing it within a goup, each of the memeber of the group can log their expenses and view how much each of them owes to other. When you get paid by one of the user who was owing money to you, then you can log that too and it will be there in the record so that one can see how much he is spending.

This site is free to use and right now allows 5 free users in a group. It has really nice interface made using web 2.0 and good functionality which is needed by many. It has uses like when you go for some trip or plan some activity with bunch of friends where everybody is spending. It is accessible to them over the web and good way to settle account.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Performancing FireFox

I am publishing this blog with a very cool firefox extension i.e. Performancing FireFox.(PFF). It allows to blog from the explorer and provides context menu to publish any html page while you are browing to any of your blog. It allows you to select content on the page which you are viewing on browser and then publish it on your blog.

The editor provides various editing options, it keeps the history of the blogs, categories etc.

Cool extension for firefox.

Monday, January 09, 2006

Google acquired ReqWireless

Its offical now google has acquired a canadian company i.e reqwireless. Google is using its money which it has collected by selling shares few months back, by acquiring small companies. It has acquire ReqWireless recently.

Here it has been reported that google liked the technolgoy and the talented team which has made these products. Well products are not available for sell now.

This is the great beginning for google.

NetoMat ! One more social networking software

Over the last few months many software were made using AJAX and Web 2.0, in different categories like messaging, social networking, tagging, search, bookmarking, photo sharing etc. Netomat is a fresh one taking its stride in ths pool with some unique features.

Netomat is based in New York and their aim is to enrich its customer's lifestyles by making it easy and convenient for people to stay connected across any IP-enabled device.

They said that here at netomat hub you can instantly and easily, on the Web and phone:

* Get news and blogs
* Share and publish any content privately or publicly
* Socialize and stay connected with friends anywhere anytime
So, what is a hub?

A hub lets you always be connected both to your content and to your friends – from the Web and your phone. Users can create public or private hubs and share data accordingly.

Here is the screen shot which i was testing on my pc.

Publishing date is made simple by allowing users to publish content from both the medium mobile and PC. The service is free and lets people get text messages, news, photos and blog feeds on their mobile phone and PC, and share their own blogs and other feeds with others, either in private groups or public blogs.

Good work!

Saturday, January 07, 2006

XM and Sirrius Satellite radios!

Haven't you heard of satellite radios? Com'on wake up, this is the next hyped thing after AJAX and web 2.0 which is stirring in market for the last few months.

Well both the company's are doing good and XM specially came out with sleek models in CES this year. Now we can store about 50 hrs of media (mp3, jpegs, shows etc). They came out this this model named XMtogo by pioneer.

It has 1 GB of memory in it and the screen's resolution is around 160 X 160 which is not that great but its okay. It has been integrated with napster to download music by tagging which ever songs you want to download. It claims 10 hrs of battery life for playback and 6 hours while recording some media, and comes with a car kit, home kit, and case with purchase.

Sirius on the other hand is catching up with XM. Howard stern is not like by plenty of people but he is adored by millions of them as i can say from statistics. This company is delivering good content and XM is spending on research.

Well lets see who wins the race! My money is on both of them :)

My vegas trip!!

Well new year hasn't greeted me that well financially and didn't had any expectations too :)

It started with a bad note when we were driving to vegas from reno. Even after many people told me that they have got tickets when going to vegas, i was damn confident that I won't get ticket how so ever fast i drive on that two track road (yes without divider believe me). The cop was harsh too and he fined me 197 bucks for going on 82 on a road which has a limit of 70. I really felt bad about it, bcos losing in black jack, poker or roulette makes more sense or giving money in charity than giving it to Uncle SAM.

Then without being in the casino i was already down so i thought i will recover in casino and trust me i was doing great in black jack winning contiuously for 7 games. I was fabulous until the deal told me, haven't u started with 20 and made this much money and called me lucky guy. From that moment i started losting and i have lost 40 bucks with which i have started, i got up from that table and went to other one. There minimum deal was $15 bucks, my two or three lunch i guess. I was 60 up and thought to get up bcos i had recovered my 40 bucks which i had lost on other table but the damn greed could not allow me to get up, and ulitmately i lost another 60$. So with $100 down my friends suggested, not a good day for me to bet so they asked to go to some place and enjoy it in other way.

Then i had good party at one club in vegas and returned by cab (kept my car in hotel as it was new year's celebration there on the strip no cars were alloed and i didn't want to take risk). So after paying money to cab guy i forgot my cell phone in his cab. Well my bad luck didn't end there, my friends who were at some other place they did call me in the morning (ofcourse after partying in vegas i come to hotel in the morning, thats the ritual out there which i follow ) and cab driver picked up the phone and told my friend that i can call him after 12 pm and he will inform me were to meet and then he will deliver it. My dumb friend thought he will give it to me next day and he didn't bothered to wake me up in the hotel and inform me. He told me next day when i was ransacking the hotel suite and by that time i had called to my cell phone ten times and it was well before 12 pm. Ultimately i cursed my friend but in vain i had to bear that loss too but the good part was my contrat is ending on 7th and i am going for new cell phone and changing my carrier from verizon to tmobile.

Well next day again i tried my luck to recover part of my loss and same thing happend i lost 25 bucks and then i said, its enough to lose in one trip in one way or the other and i called it a day for my trip.

In this trip i didn't watch any shows since i had watches zumanity last time and getting tickets during that time of the year was really crazy.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Its easy to create your own poll and get opinions

dPolls is another web 2.0 company which has made a very cool website to create poll and get the result there itself.

This is still in development and there are some issues related to picture upload, editing already created poll etc. As time passes by this might turn out to be good one to create free poll and stick it in your website.

Here I have created one poll, those who understand this game (Cricket, yah i m not talking about baseball or futball) will answer it.

Create polls and vote for free.