Friday, January 28, 2005

Naluvedapathy Story

I just read how a village, Naluvedapathy, in Tamil Nadu was saved from the brunt of Tsunami (via). Two years ago, they had planted around 60,000 eucalyptus and casuarina trees to appease the rain-gods. On Dec 26, these trees slowed down the pace of the waters and saved thousands of lives.

Being a nature lover, this story really make me happy.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

IndiBloggies 2004

Awards are out. Kiruba has won Life-time achievement. Congrats Kribs!

You can find this year's winners here.

Friday, January 21, 2005

On-the-go Digital

I bought a Gemini key chain digital camera at Frys for $20. Even though the resolution is pretty low (352 x 288), it works out as a easy-on-the-go camera. Sized the palm of a hand, it comes with a CD (software/webcam/driver) and a USB cable. Runs on a standard AAA battery. Has a in-built memory upto 2MB; can hold upto 20 good resolution snaps. After the limit is reached, the pictures have to be downloaded to a PC and cleared up. No flash, but pictures come out okay in bright light.

It is a CIF resolution camera. New term I learnt with the purchase. Here is a picture I took from my office window on the fourth floor. It is the actual size.

Makes a good gift idea!

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Disabling Drag-and-drop?

Can anyone please tell me how to disable drag-and-drop (folders and files) on Windows Explorer? It is very annoying.

Googling did not yeild anything. Except, I found that there is way to disable start menu drop-and-drop. You can find that article here.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Internet has opened up so much information for ordinary (/lazy) people like me. One such great resource is the Wikipedia. It has a wealth of information about so many things and it is amazing that all the content was contributed by the millions of visitors themselves. And all the information is provided free-of-charge to the public. The site runs on private donations and is free from advertisements.

Interesting Fact: Since it is totally volunteer contributed effort, Wikipedia rewards hard-workers with Barnstar medals.

Wikis like blogs are helping non-professionals get involved in publishing content onto the internet. I look forward to personal wikis (personal blogs that can be edited by anyone); like a merger of both worlds. Stuart Henshall blogged about this (via Dina).

Wikipedia is maintained by the Wikimedia Foundation. They also maintain other wiki-sites such as Wikinews, Wiktionary, Wikiquote, Wikibooks, Wikisource and the Wikimedia Commons.

Price Alerts

This morning I thought I struck on a novel idea for a e-commerce website. A website that alerts you when you a product (that you are interested in) hits a price mark. As always, there is someone else who has already been there and done that. I searched and found PriceGrabber has it. Grr... You have to create a profile with them and it will let you create price alerts. I setup an account with them and wished the Konica Minolta D31 hits a $100 mark. I hope it does. :) I recently bought a Canon A95. It is a bit bulky. I want a pocket sized camera that I can take with me everywhere. Quality does not matter. I can settle for 2MP or a 3MP.

Friday, January 14, 2005

Blogger's Spell check

I was spell checking my previous post about Hyugens. Blogger's spell check tool tells me "blog" is spelled incorrect and should be replaced by "bloc". I thought that was funny coming from a blogging application. It also advises me to use "flogging" instead of "blogging". :)

Hyugens has landed

I have been closing watching JPL's activities in the last year. I was really excited when the rovers landed on Mars. I stayed up all night to watch the NASA TV broadcast of the landing. Now another great news from the same people, Hyugens has landed. Hyugens has taken seven years to reach the Titan (a moon of Saturn). It was attached to the Cassini spacecraft that arrived at Saturn in July 2004.

Here is what Professor Southwood told the BBC.

"We're doing something today which will last for centuries. It's not my name that matters it's what we're doing," said Professor Southwood.

"You have to take risks, otherwise, nothing ventured, nothing gained."

Pasadena, where the NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory is located is close to my place. I should visit there sometime and blog about it.

Comments Hack

I implemented the comments hack today. I think it works great. Leave a comment. :)

Thursday, January 13, 2005


One of my blog visitors pointed the lack of a trackback feature on this site. I added the Haloscan trackback feature today. I did not want Haloscan to take over my commenting system. I just added the trackback portion of the HTML code.

Weblog Commenting and Trackback by

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Bad Taste

Indiatimes has an article about how an Indian Call Center employee was abused by a Phily radio station host. The whole conversation was in bad taste. This coming from a respectable radio station part of the broadcasting company Clear Channel. I am irked that the hosts were just suspended for just a day.

The audio file of the converstation can be downloaded here.


I got myself a Bloglines account. Sometime back, I had written about how to automatically check changes in other blogs. The problem with that was when I change computers (home vs office vs laptop), I was not able to centrally manage my blog list. That is where a bloglines account will help. It will keep all the blogs I read at one place accessible to all computers. I think it can highlight the blogs that have been recently updated and even list them (only) on the homepage.

Subscribe with Bloglines

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Blogger Hacks

Here is an interesting site I found (via). I like the comments idea. I should give it a thought before I implement.

Friday, January 07, 2005

Categories in Blogger

BTW, when will Blogger come up with a post category option? My last post would gone into the "To Do" category. I could have put them together.

Blogger people, are you listening? please, please, please :)

To do

My to-do lists right now,

* Learn Spanish - Got a CD Book. Yet to kick off full-swing.
* Learn Ruby on Rails - Recently heard of it.
* Become Wikipedian - Recently I got to see more of how Wiki works.
* Listen to BBC regularly - I used to listen to a lot of BBC when I was at school (like 10 years ago). Have to get back to that habit. Did you know they do not have a SW Broadcast in North America. They are available only on the Internet.

Technology put to good use

Here is a BBC article about how technology could be put to good use to save lives. Kudos to all the people behind this idea especially Taran Rampersad.

Text messages aid disaster recovery

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Bridging the Digital Divide

Here is a must read article,

The Tsunami as a Wake-Up Call to Bridging the Digital Divide
by Andy Carvin

How to upload pictures to your blog?

When I started blogging, I was wondering how people add pictures to the blog. Blogger does not store any files. This morning I had one of friends (Vijay, welcome to blogger) ask about it and so this post.

The following are some sites that will host the pictures for you. And all of them are free.

Hello: A Blogger partnership.

Pros: One click picture post to your blog. Neat picture resize feature for large images. Easy to use.

Cons: Needs a client install. Does not give options to export HTML. Users with basic HTML knowledge need the export option for posting pictures in the middle of the text. No website image upload option.

Photobucket: This is what I currently use.

Pros: Upload feature on website. Image HTML export. Easy to use. Picture Resize options.

Cons: I can't think of any. biased? :)

Flickr: Have not used this. May be I will soon. And then write a review about it. But I have seen it used in other sites. It has a sleek feature called "Daily zeitgeist". You can see this in action on the Tsunami Help website where they use it to show missing people.

Blog Comments to E-mail

Blogger has a neat feature that e-mails the comments entered in the blog. You can enable this option by entering an e-mail address in the Settings - Comments Tab.

Works like a charm!

Tuesday, January 04, 2005

2005 Calendars

New year is in. If you would like to print some calendars, Microsoft has some neat templates.

Here is a quick link to the 2005 business calendar.

(requires Word or Excel on your machine)

Monday, January 03, 2005

Tsunami Donations

I am a regular contributor to the World Food Programme. Generally we have no idea where our donations reach. Here is an exception (Kiruba's Weblog). Any donations done through are distributed through people like Kiruba. And it is great to have such visibility to the relief work. Pictures speak more than words.

Kiruba and Ganesh (not me, his last name is Siddhamali and he hosts, Good job guys! Keep up the good work.

The Hindu has written an article mentioning Kiruba and

Sunday, January 02, 2005

Tsunami Help Effort

Posting less frequently here. For the last couple of days, I am involved in the Tsunami Help Effort at their blog and the wikinews site.

Tsunami Help Blog

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Happy New Year

Tsunami has made this day a sad one. These babies (one of them named Tsunami) on Andaman give hope. Let us all start with hope, a hope that we get these people back to their normal lives as soon as possible.

Wish you a Happy New Year 2005!