My first Windows Vista Sidebar Gadget :)

March 29, 2007 at 1:22 am (Technology)

After ~8hours of enjoyable efforts, here is my first Windows Vista Sidebar Gadget! It’s not rocket science, just a simple desktop scorecard gadget for Vista sidebar. It talks to cricinfo website and displays updated scores on your sidebar user interface.

If you are running Windows Vista, please try the gadget. You can download it from here

It is called “Cricinfo Live Scores

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Pursuit of Hapiness – Can you relate yourself to Chris Garnder?

March 26, 2007 at 4:53 pm (Pointless Philosophy)

Last Saturday I watched ‘Pursuit of Happiness’ with my dad at Six Degrees, Satyam Cinemas. I wanted to see this movie for a long time. Finally got a chance when I visited Chennai last Saturday.

Am not going to write a review of the movie, not worth spending time on it. It was good acting by Will Smith but overall movie was not something that is fresh to me. Being an Indian, I have seen and heard thousands of such “rags to riches” story. More of “money is not everything” types like one of my favourites, tamil movie “Varymayin Neram Sevappu” back in the 80s.

Movie apart, I don’t know how many of the audiences would’ve understood how Will Smith would’ve felt having no money left to spend for tomorrow and no clue on how to make some money right now. Sparing a few, I don’t think I know anyone who would’ve gone through tough times when money was a serious “lacking”.

… Or even if they did I don’t think they have shared the experience with me. Well, here is something new – I can tell you exactly how Chris Gardner(Will Smith) would’ve felt while he hit rock bottom having no money left to survive.

Can you relate some part of your life to Chris Garnder’s story? I can.

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Rewards from failure?

March 19, 2007 at 1:50 pm (Pointless Philosophy)

Can success of a failure be measured? How?

It would be great if failure was rewarded as long as you fail fast and fail in new ways

    – Tren Griffin, Microsoft

Tren Griffin is working as a Network Services Strategist with Microsoft. He likes to talk about current trends in Telecom, Search and other domains. His emails to the internal discussion forums are a great source of information and learning to many like me within Microsoft.

Tren is one of my idols at Microsoft :)

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Free Antivirus, Free Spyware Removal tool – Windows Live OneCare

March 16, 2007 at 4:05 pm (Technology)

This is old news, but still appears to be widely “unreported” news. I have spent hours searching for a Free Antivirus for my home PC, couple of hours more to get a Free Spyware Removal tool.

ENTER: Windows Live Onecare safety scanner. (FREE)
Windows Live OneCare (Paid service, subscription based)

Windows Live OneCare safety scanner is a free Web-based service that gives you quick, on-demand PC health and security scans to help you diagnose and solve problems, but it does not proactively protect your PC against new virus infections.

And if you need a full fledged antivirus then you got Windows Live OneCare for $49/year. (Free Trial Version for 90 days)

Windows Live OneCare is subscription-based software that, once installed on your PC, runs continuously in the background and automatically updates itself. Windows Live OneCare offers persistent, always-on security features that generally don’t require any action on your part.

I was excited when Microsoft launched a Free Virus scanner and a Free spyware removal tool. It is of good value considering that is from from Microsoft can save you from all the time you wasted on trial versions and crappy free but limited editions.

But it is sad to see no traction around this ALL IN ONE and very useful tool for HOME users. Heck, how many of you know that the tool is actually FREE for first 90 days and FREE safety scanner for life?

Imagine Google launching a similar service? It would be declared as end-of-the-world for Symantec and McAfee and instant nirvana for the Google Fanboys! Jeeez!

Back to reality, the “not-so-popular” edition of Onecare safety scanner is available for FREE Windows XP and Windows Vista.
Windows Live Onecare

Safety Scan for Windows Vista

Hello, early adopter! Welcome to the Windows Live OneCare safety scanner test area. So you were the first kid on the block to download Windows Vista—now be the first one to try the Windows Vista beta edition of the Windows Live OneCare safety scanner.

I wish they make the real-time-scan and a Personal Firewall also FREE soon! Good bye AVG, good bye Zonealarm!

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Tata Safari Ad – Makes me wanna buy this machine!

March 14, 2007 at 8:48 pm (Pointless Philosophy)

I don’t know what is it that I really like about this Tata Safari ad in particular – but I love it. It connects to me at some level that is making me want to buy this machine although I have no clue how good/bad it is nor do I have the money ! :)

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MIX07 – Win a trip to MIX07

March 14, 2007 at 8:31 pm (News)

Come join the conversation
MIX is designed to facilitate an open exchange of ideas between presenters and attendees.
Like last year, expect to hear from some of the most successful and innovative practitioners
on the Web.

Come meet up and network.
At MIX, you can talk firsthand to Microsoft executives (or give them a piece of
your mind) and rub shoulders with a whole host of influential Web personalities,
business leaders, analysts and venture capitalists.

Come see something cool.
Microsoft and its partners will be unveiling innovative new technologies and services
at MIX and showing off the latest opportunities with Windows Vista™, Xbox 360™,
Windows Mobile® and Windows Live™ services. Microsoft Research will return for another
peek at the latest wonders they’re cooking up in the labs.

Come have some fun.
We hold MIX in Las Vegas for a reason! We strictly enforce a casual atmosphere throughout
and try to help everyone have a good time at the end of each long day. This year,
among other things, you can look forward to a private party with the world-famous
Pussycat Dolls at PURE, the hottest nightclub on the strip.

Come to MIX07 for the Next Web Now.

A Web Developer, build:

  • AJAX Web applications quickly and easily with ASP.NET
  • Living room applications for Windows Media® Center
  • Gadgets that live on the Windows® desktop
  • Sites and applications that consume Windows Live services
  • Xbox 360 games and experiences with XNA
  • High-scale back-end applications with Windows Server® and SQL Server
  • Exciting new Web experiences with the still-secret “Technology X”
  • And more
  • A Web Designer, learn about:

  • Optimizing your site for IE7
  • Using WPF and “WPF/E” to design gorgeous and highly functional user interfaces
  • Extending your Web experience beyond the browser and onto televisions and other
    devices
  • The suite of Expression tools that revolutionize the way designers work with developers
  • And more
  • A Web Businessperson, learn about:

  • Case studies of profitable sites built using the Microsoft platform
  • Monetizing RSS
  • Building a better user experience to unlock new revenue opportunities
  • Forging tighter, stickier customer connections
  • Microsoft’s comprehensive advertising platform
  • Building innovative media experiences into your site
  • And more
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    Nishabd – Ram Gopal Verma Movie

    March 5, 2007 at 5:03 pm (Personal)

    Movie Review of Nishabd… well, let’s not waste time and move on. It’s crap. The worst Ram Gopal Verma movie I’ve seen in theatres in the recent past. I know, I know.. don’t mention James et al now – I was lucky enough not to watch those “movies” in theatres but fell in to the “Nishabd” trap.

    Pros: The cast – Amitabh Bachan, Revathi, Nasser and Jiah Khan’s legs
    Cons: Disturbingly loud background score and everything else that you notice on screen.

    Please don’t waste time and money. I am waiting for “In pursuit of happiness” to be released in Bangalore, hope it is a good one.

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    Google vs. Live (Math as search string)

    March 5, 2007 at 3:19 pm (Pointless Philosophy)

    This is funny. Real funny. I don’t know who is to be blamed – Google or Live?

    As most of you already know, both Google and Live are search engines and they are constantly evolving every day to serve better search results. One area that I really like about both of them is accepting “mathematical expressions” as search strings. In fact, they can also do conversion of units from one to another (like seconds to minutes)

    But a friend of mine pointed me to some funny set of mis-interpretations of mathematical expressions as search input.

    1. Search string = “2^4^2”

    Google.com says 2^4^2 = 65536
    Live.com says 2^4^2 = 256

    2. Let’s try to get 65536 out of each search engine

    To get the value 65536 you need to enter 2^2^2^2^2 in Live.com Search
    To get the same value in Google.com it is enough to enter one “^2” less = 2^2^2^2

    After a little more research I figured out why this is happening – any guesses on what is causing this? any guesses on who is right or wrong here?

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    Book claims Indians world’s most undemocratic people

    March 5, 2007 at 2:01 pm (Pointless Philosophy)

    Reported here and I can’t agree more with this text.

    Indians are perhaps the worlds most undemocratic people, living in the world’s largest and most plural democracy where a persons self-worth is almost exclusively determined by the rank he occupies, says a new book.

    A profoundly hierarchical society, in India the determination of relative rank (Is this person superior or inferior to me?) remains very near the top of subconscious questions evoked in an interpersonal encounter, says the book The Indians, Portrait of a People by psychoanalyst and culture commentator Sudhir Kakkar and anthropologist Katherina Kakkar.

    The gratification of the 300 million middle-class consumers, the new Brahmins, does not lie in their being consumers in a global marketplace but in being somebody in a profoundly hierarchical society, the authors say. You must be somebody to survive with dignity, since rank is the only substitute for money. Thus retired judges, ex-ambassadors and other sundry officials who are no longer in service are never caught without calling cards prominently displaying who they once were, authors say.

    Although at first glance the notion of Indian-ness among the one billion population speaking 14 major languages with pronounced regional differences may seem far-fetched, yet from ancient times European, Chinese and Arab travellers have identified common features among Indian people, it says.

    Must get a copy of this book. It talks about us and it is speaking the truth.

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