Poll: What can MIcrosoft do for $44B?

March 1, 2008 at 8:21 pm (developers, digital life, internet, quiz, web) (, , , , , )

What can Microsoft do for $44B? (hmmm…. instead of bothering Yahoo & rest of us!)
  1. Eradicate hunger from a good part of the world for decades to come, so once they are hungry no more, they can join as coders in MS’ open source movement!!
  2. Build a World Trade Ctr (twin tower, not one) in every state of US.
….. click on the poll below …
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After 35 years

February 29, 2008 at 8:04 pm (Life in general)

Its heart wrenching when you hear such stories as that of Kashmir Singh, who was released from jail in Pakistan after 35 yrs!

What will it be like, when someone spends each of those 35 yrs in a foreign jail for the sake of one’s own country! The entire youth lost while serving time in another country! With a lot of people, who you cannot relate to. Three and half decades lost! And all this for what? Serving for one’s own country? His fault was to fight for India in war? Now he comes back live his old age with his family. I respect such men, and admire the moral strength of his wife who waited for him for 35 yrs (I hate to draw the ‘Veer Zaraa’ parallelism).

POWs are by far the most unfortunate heroes of the country. I wish the laws of land change to treat POWs in different manner.

For all the greatness of the country we are enjoying, the convenience we take for granted (just as I am posting my opinion being in a comfy position), we should remember there are some people somewhere, who are sacrificing their days, weeks, months, years and lives for us!

(Pictures: Kashmir Singh, then and now)

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YaWho? mail

February 6, 2008 at 7:58 am (digital life, internet, web) (, , )

Hotmail, the first to create the free online email was sort of Silicon Valley pioneers in mid 90’s. They started a generation of free email providers on the Net. Yahoo, Excite, Lycos, and many followed. And then one fine day MS woke upto the web based email revolution and being cash rich, they bought off hotmail for $300+million! That was the end of the road for hotmail. Today Hotmail is one of the worst free email services on the net.

HotmailHotmail, I believe still has a limit on email storage, while Yahoo & GMail are virtually free. And try not logging into your hotmail account for more than a month. Next time you log in, all your emails will be cleaned (though they retain your email address), which is brutal!! Happened to a colleague of mine, who had some important emails saved in his acct. He contacted their tech support, was ready to pay them a price to recover his mails, but all he got was a cold reply ‘Sorry’!

So Microsoft has done it with Hotmail, and now they are going to repeat the history with Yahoo! MS+Y! means the end of one of the best webbased emails of the current generation!

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A movie on Font??

February 5, 2008 at 8:10 am (graphic design) (, , )

It almost surprised me, as to what a movie about Font might be like! Well, you never know – curiously enough I grabbed a popcorn and slipped into darkness. Intentionally went late into the movie, because to begin with I was not too lookin fwd to see a documentary on Fonts!

HelveticaBut what do you know? It was anything but boring, kinda interesting to see beyond what we almost take for granted. A history behind the font Helvetica. I guess its the only movie made about a Font. Visit www.helveticafilm.com for details. This font was created about 50 yrs back, however it is still used to communicate effectively, in a rather bold, confident way. Many fonts have come and gone, but Helvetica has stayed on. It was funny how Arial was called the evil brother of Helvetica.

Certain fonts evoke some quasi-emotional response when we look at them, and we almost unconsciously establish a relationship (friendly or otherwise) with the product or brand that we see. Even if we know nothing about it. Graphic designers use this trick to trap us all the time. Some brands use the same characteristics of the fonts (color, width, weight), you can almost certainly say the product from the font. Though some of it is learned, but they establish a relationship with us over time. Like you can tell a New York Life ad even though the name may not appear anywhere. Same with E*Trade, with Crate&Barrel, with Starbucks! We almost make up our mind one way just looking at the way the fonts are laid out in front of us…[BusineessWeek article on effectiveness of Helvetica!]

HelveticaSo why Helvetica? Its bold & beautiful. Its confident. Its on-your-face, yet gentle. As someone in the movie described, its not as if letters are floating on the screen, its as if letters are engraved or cut into the screen and the other whitespace (or whatever color) around it are tightly holding the letters! Its an effective font, if you want to make a statement with fewest letters.

Here’s the link to the “Helvetica Film“!

Had the opportunity to hear about the making of the movie after the screening form the maker himself, Gary Hustwit.

And of course I couldn’write this post with any other Font 🙂

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Copyright Violation & StSanders???

February 4, 2008 at 11:04 pm (digital life) (, , , )

One of my previous posts, I wrote about StSanders videos, the hillllaaaarrriiioooouuussss take on live concert footage by guitar heroes like Santana, Steve Vai, Eric Clapton, Slash, Angus Young and many more …!

StSandersUnfortunately, the videos have been removed by YouTube as a copyright violation!! The account suspended!!

Really??? Copyright violation?? Anyone who has seen at least one of his videos, can vouch that its original to every sec of it. He created the sound and pasted on a live video of a concert footage!! The result was hysterical! For no ordinary reason, it was ranked amongst the best of 2007 online videos by Wired magazine (“The Year in Online Videos” #4)!! The following was the Wired detailed article on it. Hilarious YouTube Parodies ‘Shred’ Guitar Gods

While tons of DVD rips of live concert are streamed every sec out of YouTube servers, how can they go after such wonderful creation? Apparently its not YouTube, its probably the producers of the original video footage. Wonder if they are really serious or doing this to gain cheap publicity!


Long live StSanders, you are the man! Hope to be able to see some of your whackiest creation elsewhere on the web! They can kill the creation, but not creativity!!

Note: found a video on YouTube, an interview with Santeri Ojala (a.k.a. StSanders) from Jimmy Kimmel show. Slash (GnR) was on the show too, and StSanders got to murder Slash video right in front of his eyes, LOL 🙂 Of course, towards the end, Slash couldn’t take the mockery anymore!!

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HD Radio commercial

February 4, 2008 at 6:03 pm (digital life) (, )

HD radioHeard a radio commercial on the way to work … well, the have been playing this series on HD radio. Its a guy talking, as if its your old radio. In one it says,

“Hey, its your radio talking, you know the old guy! Heard you got a new HD radio? Now you don’t even look at me! You want to hear everything crystal clear. You don’t want to hear between the stations? May be I could hit the gym and try some of those new stations you are into… haan?”

Another one said:

“Remember those lonely nights, long drive, you and me? I would sing you non-stop, and you don’t talk, just listen …”

Yet another one today said,

“Hey, I see you got a new HD radio by my side. Here I am laying all my buttons for you, but you don’t touch my buttons anymore. Don’t you like my buttons??”

Yuck!! That’s so Gay!!!

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Music (Un)video – StSander’s Youtube videos

February 2, 2008 at 11:20 am (digital life, music, online video, video, youtube) (, , , )

I saw this voted as one of the top 10 youtube videos of last year, ranking by Wired magazine … this is a series of music videos, mashed up (or messed up) super creatively by the youtube user StSanders – you have to watch all of them.

Pardon me if you piss in your pants laughing …

The ultimate fun is to watch Steve Vai: the expression, the action, the emotion, yikes … and the guitar playing. [Oh no, they removed Steve Vai because of copyright violation!! Copyright? Wha??????? StSanders is anything but copying stuff … a super creative mashup of Vai’s video – how can you call it copyright violation, stupid?? The original youtube url used to be: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsXS5fCq4LU
( will try to get the video from StSanders and will post)]

I was initially sent a link Slash’s (un)shredding by a friend – couldn’t stand it beyond a min, and told my friend, Slash is really lost it on this video! Only to realize a little later, I got fooled!! Another friend of mine seriously thought Eric Clapton was really having a bad day!

The whackiest of all is the fake applause he’s got …

Wired review: http://www.wired.com/entertainment/music/news/2007/10/shredders

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Boatride in Kerala

February 2, 2008 at 10:22 am (Travel stories) (, , )

Boatride in Kerala

This is in reply to a nice blog written by indisch, titled “Drive home last night”

My reply:

….Yeah, reminds me – last year, I was at Kerala – stayed on the banks of the largest lake of the state (I forget the name). Both I and my wife wanted to take a ride on a smaller boat, we found a man with a small rowboat next to our resort. Apparently the boat was so small and wobbly, leave apart holding two of us, he asked one person at a time to ride and to sit in the middle. You try to act smart, the boat simply throws you into water. No life jacket, you’re on your own!

Anyways, coming back to context, I was quite surprised to learn the boatman not only spoke very good english, but was also very learned about the nearby area. He really need not ride a boat to earn his living, one of his child working in middle east, and one working in a mobile company. But he enjoyed taking people foreigners and alike on boatrides and tell them about the place. Not only pleasantly surprised, I had utter respect for the man….

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Money can’t buy love, but Money can buy Yahoo!

February 2, 2008 at 10:07 am (developers, internet, web) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Morning’s breaking news was hard enough for me to start a blog!! So actually this is my first one!

Microsoft + Yahoo!

(literally meaning the exclamation ‘!’ mark after Yahoo)

What if someone pays you a billlion bucks to committ suicide? Will ya? (I can hear some ‘Hell Yeah’ from somewhere far east) But Yahoo has been offerred 44. And unfortunately they will. There goes the end to one of the finest innovators of Silicon Valley! Yahoo recently announced 10% layoff, and MS’ generous offer (44B for a 23b company). Its all timed well, you know!

Yahootmail.com?? Heck, I have been using Yahoo mail for the longest time, but I have to hate myself biding goodbye to it. No thanks, I will opt out of “MSN Yahoo! Community”!

There is much more: do I want my DSL connection to go through MS domain? NO!

YHOO went up 48% in a day – that’s prolly one good news for Yahoo investers in recent times. But bad news for rest of us, web developers and alike. Let me download the latest version of YUI before it becomes MUI! JavaScript out, VBScript in! That will suck so bad.

I have one request for Microsoft though, if you acquire Yahoo, please move them out of Silicon Valley, we’ll collect $$ to build a tombstone!

Yahoo 1995-2008

(So the number 13 did its trick!!)

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