Archive | October, 2005

Happy Diwali !

29 Oct

I am heading off to home for a week where I will be celebrating the festival of Diwali with my parents and friends. I’ll be back on the 5th of November and so, in this period any updates on this blog would only be sporadic, if not completely non-existent.

Wishing you all a very Happy Diwali!

Happy Diwali from enginerd

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Yoono – Collaborative Searching and Sharing

27 Oct

Just read on Netanel Jacobsson’s blog about Yoono, a collaborative searching, exchanging and information sharing service. The service is employing a unique approach by indexing “web users’ bookmarks to overcome problems of language, synonyms and other syntaq quirks.”


Yoono is a free software application you can download which combines for the first time the management and sharing of information. Based on pooling user knowledge, yoono is a collaborative search engine and an innovative communication tool.
With yoono, don’t search alone, share with those that know…

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Scoble Family on Blogosphere

27 Oct

If one Scoble wasn’t enough to ‘rule’ the blogosphere, now we have the whole Scoble family Blogging. Robert’s wife Maryam already blogs at MSN Spaces and the blogosphere now witnesses the arrival of Robert’s son Patrick.

Guess what the title of his blog reads. MiniScoblizer. And the tag line: “I’m the son of a 40 year old blogger you can check his blog at”

Here’s what Scoble had to say about MiniScoble using Blogger:

I sense he’s just trying to be rebellious. First an iPod. Now he’s using a Google blog tool. I gotta straighten him out. He’s only 11. Imagine how rebellious he’ll be when he’s 14!!

And just in case you didn’t know, Robert’s brother Alex blogs too!

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Creepy Mobile phones

27 Oct

I have never owned a mobile phone that had the habit of going into a “hang” mode every other moment and that had to be hit with the palm or tapped not-so-gently at the table to get it up running again and do what it is supposed to do. Tales of such a mobile phone:

  • In the middle of a call, the phone “hangs”. The conversation isn’t possible but the call is still being charged for. And no matter what he tries, the phone refuses to respond. Furious, my friend pulls out the battery. Order restored.
  • The poor chap is discussing his project with the the Professor. Suddenly there is a beep. Followed by another one. And another. And then the discreet beeps turn into a constant “beepbeepbeep… “putting the powerful Nokia vibration mode into hyperactivity. Chaos as the Professor watched him hitting the phone at the table. All without any success.

The lucrative terrain

26 Oct

The Guardian has an article by Jonathan Freedland on the “multi-million-pound industry intent on turning teenagers and toddlers alike into avaricious consumers.”

According to the article, an average British child is familiar with up to 400 brand names by the time he has reached the age of 10! “Researchers report that our children are more likely to recognize Ronald McDonald and the Nike swoosh than Jesus. One study found that 69% of all three-year-olds could identify the McDonald’s golden arches – while half of all four-year-olds did not know their own name.”

There is, in other words, an enormous children’s marketplace, and it is lucrative terrain. The under-16s spend an estimated £30bn a year, including £6bn on clothes and £2bn on toys. Eight in 10 kids have their own TV in their room; half have a DVD player or a video. A million children under nine own a mobile phone. One in five have internet access. With more pocket money than ever before – over £6 a week for the seven to 11 age group and more than £9 for the under-16s – they are a highly-prized target audience. And make no mistake, they are being targeted.

Google Base

25 Oct

Google Base is the latest from Google! While the word was floating around the web about the subdomain, I wasn’t able to have a look at it as Google had pulled it down showing a 403 Forbidden Error. However, just trying randomly, I could get a peek when the site went live momentarily.

The moment I keyed in the URL, I was greeted by a weird looking screen that asked me to sign in with a Google Account. The screen however was restored to normality with me signing into my Gmail account.

Google Base Homepage Screenshot

Google Base Homepage Screenshot

What Google Base does is however not amply clear from what is there on the homepage. The FAQ page is still not up showing an “Oops…We didn’t understand that. You have tried to access a non-existent page.” ” message. The desciption from the Google Base homepage reads:

Post your items on Google.

Google Base is Google’s database into which you can add all types of content. We’ll host your content and make it searchable online for free.

Examples of items you can find in Google Base:

• Description of your party planning service
• Articles on current events from your website
• Listing of your used car for sale
• Database of protein structures

You can describe any item you post with attributes, which will help people find it when they search Google Base. In fact, based on the relevance of your items, they may also be included in the main Google search index and other Google products like Froogle and Google Local.

I tried to post something on Google Base but the got the following error:

For input string: “-5.5”
Error 500

Also, none of the links on the page about Privacy policy, Terms of service, Program policies, and Frequently asked questions (FAQ) worked. All these links currently link to non-existent pages.

I can’t wait to see what actually this is all about. There are already speculations about it from being a potential rival to eBay and Craiglist, to Google creating a new GoogleSQL. The earlier one seems more probable. Lets see…


Google’s response at Official Google Blog

You may have seen stories today reporting on a new product that we’re testing, and speculating about our plans. Here’s what’s really going on. We are testing a new way for content owners to submit their content to Google, which we hope will complement existing methods such as our web crawl and Google Sitemaps. We think it’s an exciting product, and we’ll let you know when there’s more news.

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25 Oct

The last weekend I headed off to attend an entrepreneurship seminar, accompanied by two of my friends. The place was buzzing with activity, with an abundant supply of ideas on just about any topic. I met a bunch of really wonderful people, both management and engineering undergrads like me. Quite a lot of companies, some what you would call the top guns in the Fortune 500 list, and some Indian startups, were present at the place and it was simply wonderful to be listening to some of these guys who had made successful entrepreneurs.

Back at campus now, I see myself buried neck deep in assignments, pending projects, presentations, and what not! Almost all projects I am working on currently are approaching their deadline dates at a pace too close for comfort! But then, there is the advantage of working in a team packed with smart guys: They always get the work done with you!