Friday, February 25

 

Blogs in javaconnect

While stealing a quick bite at a Reliance WebWorld cum JavaGreen joint yesterday, I came across a piece on blogging in javagreen's magazine javaconnect. My unjust self could call it shallow but given the tendency of everyone classing geek stuff and normal stuff so far apart, I guess the effort was commendable.

Here's a bit of it:

"Yeah? Why not create a blog on what ails the Indian cricket team?"

Why not indeed. You want it - go get it. That's what blogging is all about.


Followed the cold coffee up with Scorcese's The Aviator at Sathyam. Best presentation I saw in all my time in Chennai. Do watch it (that is if you have not been hiding under an unusually heavy rock like me till now).

Wednesday, February 23

 

Technorati malfunction

The technorati searchlet on the right is malfunctioning right now. Even when the this blog radio button is selected, the search fetches results from all blogs on technorati. Wonder what's wrong. I re-installed the searchlet but to no avail.

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Kottke to blog on

Jason Kottke, got the web talking in the last few hours. What has he done? This…

Quitting my job to run kottke.org full-time is possibly the dumbest economic decision I’ve ever made in my life.


Guardian’s Online Blog takes a safely cynical view of Kottke’s decision. While Ev is all GO! for it.

Quitting a job for creative pursuits is not something I would disapprove of. For those of us without jobs, it is something we can only approve of. In spite of the misery of joblessness creeping in from all sides, this is what Yahoo! emailed me this morning.

You silver-tongued devil, you! As if your already indisputable way with logic weren’t enough, you’ve suddenly been additionally gifted with the ability to charm the socks off of any audience member. Is that fair?


No seriously! Is that fair?

Tuesday, February 22

 

Off

For the time being, I may not be posting much. Try this blog to satisfy your craving for all things me till I write here again.

Actually, I may write here in the meantime too. You know me!

Monday, February 21

 

Love story


They don't make love stories as they used to anymore!

Sunday, February 20

 

Google is scanning

Read this story in expressindia about France's National Library's fears of Google projecting a unipolar view of the world in the process of its next big initiative. Just in case the story goes into the archives before you get to it, here's an excerpt.

California-based Google Inc. said last December it would scan millions of books and periodicals into its popular search engine over the next few years.

Its partners in the project are Harvard University, Stanford University, Oxford University, the University of Michigan and the New York Public Library.

Google says the project will promote knowledge by making it more easily and more widely accessible. It aims to make money by attracting people to its Web site and to its advertisements.


Interesting tiff!

 

Livejournal's new look?

Sadly no. Its only the SixApart re-designed site's livejournal page. A time shall come...

 

Ideas

This, after reading through Seth Godin's Bad ideas Post and forcing myself to think a bit on some stuff that passed my mind ages ago. Web forms to me were something I came across everyday. Godin's idea may be subject to intelligent debate by people much more conversant in usability theory than I am. But I remember the first time I signed up for something on the web, ages ago, I had to fill in things like race and gender. Race's very presence was offensive and the drop down list for gender had only male and female in it. Some web services do have options like other and/or do not reveal but mandatory fields like this only go on to enforce conformity upon those who do not wish to.

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Saturday, February 19

 

The DC Universe

Not that I have any time to kill, but I was killing some anyway at dccomics.com. Perhaps it was my new year resolution for the year before last - I will re-acquaint myself with the mythologies of both the DC and Marvel universes. Lost touch long time ago. TV spoiled me. I wallowed in the mock-glory of television series while the stories kept growing. I must get back on track before it all becomes far too incomprehensible.

Check out Kid Flash for example. Also, don't miss the new Super Boy and Robin.

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Firefox me!

Interesting! If you just type vmblog in the firefox address bar and hit enter, it automatically leads you to this blog. I knew this happened with Google's I'm Feeling Lucky button, because the query 'vmblog' features my blog on top of the Google results page.

Funnily, the first time I tried, typing vmblog yielded some other site as the number one result on Google. It was a non-english company website. I checked and found that the vmblog.com URL is now parked on GoDaddy.

The reason why Firefox seems to love me may have something to do with Google's being its default primary search engine. The Firefox Start page is powered by Google. Resembles the rounders template of Blogger.

 

Schindler's list

Saw Schindler's List yesterday. Yes, I know I arrived a bit too late in the day but this is not a review anyway. I just want to say that I saw Schlinder's list! Would watch it on the big screen someday again. Loved the line:
Whoever saves one life, saves the world entire.

I have a strong feeling that I would be humming the theme for the next week and even a couple of days into the next. Unless something new presents itself to my sensitive ears of course.

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Friday, February 18

 

Gmail is out! (Almost)

As of now, an email is sitting in my inbox that tells me of Gmail's finally made its debut in the free email market. LazyGeek's premonitions have come true. Even I thought the neat little blue box on the left bottom of the mail interface had serious things to say. Those who signed up for an update from Gmail's side when the service becomes public, have been sent email sign-up links. It goes...

Thanks for signing up to be updated on the latest Gmail happenings. We hope it's been worth the wait, because we're excited to finally offer you an invitation to open a free Gmail account! Just click on this link to create your new account...


Luck to Google!

Thursday, February 17

 

Me throughout

The day just whooshed passed me in a blur. First, a link on a prominent page saying something on the lines of 'We are hiring!'. Then, a lot of drool. Then, quick enquiries as to how to go about the sour business of marketing myself by way of a resume. Then, the realisation that my blogger template isn't IE5 and earlier compatible. Then, shock and fingernails bitten. Then, a sudden inspired urge to do the Mozilla Foundation a favour by downloading Firefox 1.0 on eight of the lab computers. Then, sighs of satisfaction as VmBloG loads to perfection on all those slower-than-thee machines.

Then, glee at the Firefox start page which is the browser's default home page. Then, logging into blogger to blog all this. Then, this.

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Live Web!

The more I see of the-live-aggregation-of-web type services, the more I am impressed. Technorati Tags, Daypop's aggregation, Blogdex and now Intelliseek's Blogpulse. Ignore the now in the last sentence. Discovered Blogpulse some time ago. It is the act of actually contributing to the web that makes me stop and wonder out aloud. This is not consumerism. This is something that justifies the original plan for the Internet.

The difference is conceptual. The Internet is not a library. At least not the kind of library we are used to. If it is a library then perhaps it is one where you are allowed to disagree with the librarian loudly. You are allowed to scribble on the walls of the library and in some cases even write on the books if you find a typo (wiki).

Every click you make adds to the Internet. There is something very natural about the web. Like replenishable natural resources. Something very conducive to the human spirit. The Monalisa is not unique. You can copy it and send it to as many people as possible. Each copy would be as real as the original. As long as you mention the old man's name, I don't think Da Vinci would mind either.

I am currently in the middle of Lawrence Lessig's The Future of Ideas: The Fate of Commons in a connected world. The book is awe inspiring in its scope and frightening at times.

There is this line we all tread. On one side is the consumerist. On the other side are those who pay for his sins. He tells us that order is impossible without control. We agree, and then wonder why it must be he who exercises that control.

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Past the Tsunami

I remember ruing not being in the city when the waves lashed it. I was vacationing in Cuttack then. Totally out of the scene then, the longing for the thrill of 'being in the middle of it' was pressing. Until a week back, it was the waves that came to one's mind when one looked back.

As of now, the tsunami has spilled over into life. You no longer go to beaches and fishermen's villages to see its 'impact'. Its all around you. It won't be dead for a long time to come.

Tuesday, February 15

 

Flashing past

The last few days just went flashing past me. I don't even remember when this started. I think I have forgotten who all owe me money! Besides, something tells me that before the week ends, I will have either something major on my hands, or something to rue over for life.

Blogger.com reloaded its comment system, perhaps I will test it out for a bit.

Tuesday, February 8

 

Searchable now!

Alright, back to template talk. Added the Technorati Searchlet to VmBloG. It works! Try it. Although the reason it works is that my blog has been on technorati for some time now. Won't make this another one of those self possessed rambling posts.

 

Cricket and the Dork Side

It's not as emotional a flash-back as the title makes it sound. Just one of those lazy afternoon nostalgia things. Its monday and another quiz was in order. Funny things happen in quizzes. There were disappointed souls after the smoke lifted from the battlegrounds. I, thankfully, was not among them. My scores have been improving. 3 (last to last to last week), 5 (last to last week), 8 and a half (last week), and a whopping 16 and a half today.

All this doesn't even bring me close to the halfway score. But its better than starting at the top of a steep slide.Ahem! Back to the promise. Honestly, it was not even a promise. Forget solemnity and serious crap like that. It so happened, that one bedraggled soul revealed her ignorance with the sport called Cricket and got a somewhat more enlightened one started into what was soon to become a horridly detailed view of the thing. As fact after funny fact made its way into my skull against the guard I had put in place years ago, my mind travelled back to the days when Sunday morning was heaven.

My knowledge levels in all matters cricket have never been anyone's envy. Yet, owing to a father neck deep into it and the avrage smalltownish cricket-doped environs, I did stand in for impromptu crickety sessions (so called because games then were referred to as bat-ball games).I devotedly followed the Sunday morning line-up of cartoon shows on Doordarshan. There were Disney's Aladdin and Batman among others. I missed special art classes, family events, social gatherings for my bit of heaven. I even avoided friends who were inconsiderate enough to drop in. Sometimes when under the strict gaze of ma, I had to meet them, I tried and converted them.

The promise? Yes, getting to it. It's simple really, there were only two things that ever kept me from Sundaying. One was Math (pending homework, that came to the notice of dad), or Cricket. I could never (still can't) fathom the extent of insensibility that Doordarshan suffered from to be able to scrape an entire Sunday for a bunch of... Gasp!I made a Bruce Wayne kind of vow (in my sub-conscious thank you!) to be uncricketical for life. I don't get it and I don't like it. I thought this might be a good time to remind myself. The dork side is where I belong.

Wednesday, February 2

 

National Treasure

A bit of the father-son thing from Indiana Jones but the rest was cool, I dare say better. Nicholas Cage has a cool name, Benjamin Franklin Gates in the movie. What made it watchable was that Cage had generations of explorers to look back upon. The (however sentimental) premise of family and tradition made the movie so enjoyable for me. Am a sucker for things like that!

The introduction where young Gates is mock-knighted by his grandfather was extremely cool (my opinion).My first impressions didn't desert me this time. National Treasure maintains the pace throughout, with minor exceptions. Diane Kruger was a major distraction. That she sent the entire row behind me groaning, wasn't a bother (I was drooling too). I am just. Justin Bartha gave a superb performance as Riley Poole.Would like to have a proper and educated sounding end to this but can't. The movie didn't exactly rock. But go for it if you dig treasure hunt tales like Indiana Jones.

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