Friday, December 19, 2008
Wikimedia's commitment is:
"Imagine a world in which every single human being can freely share in the sum of all knowledge. That's our commitment."
That's good. I like it and admire the founders. But, why do they need money through donations?
As of 18th December 2008, they have got $ 3,835,178 in donations. And their goal is a whooping $6 million.
Wikipedia has more than 2,663,000 articles in English alone. Over all, in all languages, they will have around 10,000,000 articles. So, what if they start putting ads? Maybe, Google Adsense?
Founders and loyalists will argue that displaying ads is against and not at all the policy and mindset of Wikimedia. Of course, Wikimedia is a nonprofit charitable organization. The donations are tax exempted.
Well, what if they display ads, pay salaries and server and other costs (not Mr.Wales credit card bills!) and donate the extra or whatever left to charity. This will call for a change of rules and reforms at Wikimedia. Also, need will arise for a committee which will handle the cash.
I can't imagine the cash inflow into Wikimedia if they open Wikipedia for ads. Even a rough mental estimate tells me that the extra money can easily feed millions in Africa and other poorer nations.
Why don't they do this?
Monday, November 17, 2008
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
- Break the law
- Cheat investors
- Take a lot of bad press
- Pay a fine
- Create wealth, and all is forgiven.
Sunday, November 2, 2008
- RIL (Rs Rs 2,15,727 crore)
- ONGC (Rs 1,43,261 crore)
- Bharti Airtel (Rs 1,23,189 crore)
- NTPC (Rs 1,15,889 crore)
- Infosys (Rs 79,099 crore)
- SBI (Rs 70,439 crore)
- MMTC (Rs 66,479 crore)
- BHEL (Rs 62,737 crore)
- ITC (Rs 58,021 crore)
- NMDC (Rs 57,032 crore)
Saturday, November 1, 2008
Friday, October 31, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Google has been on the prowl searching for new and great ideas coming up from the fantasy world of startups. Pyra Labs (Blogger), Baidu, Picasa, Urchin Softwares (Google Analytics), Android, Doubleclick, Feedburner....the list goes on. (A detailed list can be found here)Lots of great services. Lots of great softwares. But sometimes, I feel that they have missed out some of the great services out there.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
WorldSpace Inc, the satellite radio broadcasting company has filed for bankruptcy in US. From July 2008 onwards, the company had changed it brand and corporate identity to 1worldspace (listed in NASDAQ as WRSP).
The company had been facing financial difficulties from 2006 onwards. The Maryland based company has a debt of more than $300 million. From the press release:
"The WorldSpace Board of Directors unanimously determined that Chapter 11 reorganization was necessary for the Company to engage in an orderly process to raise sufficient funds to repay its senior secured and convertible notes by means of either a sale of the Company or its assets, or a recapitalization of the Company.
WorldSpace will continue to operate its business and manage its assets as a ”debtor-in-possession” under the jurisdiction of the court and in accordance with the applicable provisions of the Bankruptcy Code and the orders of the court. The holders of the Company’s existing senior secured and convertible notes have agreed to provide, subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions, a “debtor-in-possession” financing facility of up to $13 million for a period of 90 days in order to facilitate a sale transaction. The financing facility is expected to enable the Company to continue to pay salaries of critical employees and continue operations which are critical to preserving the value of its core assets through the term of the facility."
India accounts for more than 150,000 subscribers which makes up to 90% of the total customer base worldwide. A R Rahman was chosen as the brand ambassador and he had composed a signature tune for Worldspace.
Emails sent to India support center and Corporate Affairs remain unanswered. Till then, enjoy the signature tune by maestro Rahman.
Update: Worldspace India has responed to my email. "India operations to continue as usual."
Saturday, October 18, 2008
The other day, I read about a techie (translates to software engineer) who hit a cop when he was asked for his driving license.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Do I sound crazy? Well, if you think so, then read on my story...
Sunday, October 12, 2008
"Yeh hum Nahin"
One of India's largest software outsourcing company, Satyam Computer Services is again in the headlines for bad stuff. If it was the $ 1 billion lawsuit by Upaid some months earlier, the latest one questions the company's ethics.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Well. This is ought to be a funny one. I don't want to talk about the personal connections of Senator Obama as someone else did recently.
I came across this funny ad when I was browsing through The Guardian. (Sorry for the small size. Better save it and zoom it up. It's a flash ad. Anyone knows how to save a flash ad?). Its funny and takes a dive at George Bush. Will McCain or Obama see this?
Saturday, October 4, 2008
Friday, October 3, 2008
Sunday, September 28, 2008
The Abhishek Bachchan starrer, Drona is gonna hit the screens next week.
Wikipedia calls it "as a Harry Potter meets Indiana Jones movie, but with an original story". But I will call it "Superman in the Matrix".
Here's excerpt of the story:
"Rooted in the vibrant tapestry of Indian mythology, Drona is the compelling modern tale of one man's spectacular voyage through the labyrinths of mystic myths and legendary legacies. Of a journey that will force him to face his fears and make him the hero he was born to become. From the times, when time itself was a newborn baby, the universe has kept one secret carefully camouflaged within its folds. A secret, which if unraveled, could unlock the destruction of mankind and the entire cosmos. Today, only one man can protect the universe's precious secret and thus, save the human race from absolute annihilation."
Sounds interesting. After being fed up with the super-human Krissh and the romantic future candyfloss Love Story : 2050, Drona might be a change to the Bollywood Super Humans!!
And this time, they are coming out with a 32-page comic book which serves as the prelude to the movie. Hope some good soul will upload it somewhere. If anyone does that, I will surely put it up here. Subscribe to my feed and get hold of it.
Here's an interview with the director Goldie Behl. Check out his plans for the future.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
It's time of celebration at Google. 10 years of collecting and organizing information.
Sunday, September 7, 2008
My picks for this week.
Microsoft eats its own dog-food!! [link]
No comments. I love it.
The Tech Barons [link]
If you want to have a look at a brief profile of the Tech Barons of the world, check this list. The one missing is none other that Bill. Is it purposeful? And of course, Jerry is not there.
Thinking too much can make you fat!! [link]
Just read it. Its interesting.
Dark Matter [link]
The Large Hadran Collider in Geneva will open this week. And if it's a success, one of the greatest mysteries of particle physics, Dark Matter. But, scientists in Cleveland,England with their Boulby project are determined to snatch it from CERN. Read on.
Oddest Book Title!! [link]
Greek Rural Postmen and Their Cancellation Numbers. Check it out.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Indiatimes has brought out the list of Asia's best tech companies. The rankings are based on long-term profitability, sales and earnings growth, stock price appreciation and projected earnings for every company in the region with revenues or market capitalization of at least $5 billion.
Check out the list. There are a couple of cheers for the Indian IT. Anyway, I have put spoilers already.
Friday, September 5, 2008
Indian Institute of Technology.
There is even a joke among we non-IITians that even being a sweeper in IIT is better than studying anywhere else. And our dear Prime Minister has started digging graves for them!!
This year, 6 new IITs have come up. This falls in with the plan to start 8 new IITs to 'boost the engineering and technology education'. But are they really IITS?
'The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), are a group of seven autonomous engineering and technology-oriented institutes of higher education established and declared as Institutes of National Importance by the Government of India', says Wikipedia. (They don't seem have to have considered the new ones to be qualified to be called as IIT!!)
IITs were started with great plans and with the expertise of countries like US, Germany and Russia. At present, India have the capability to plan with its own brains, but is that what the Government did? Quoting C.N.R Rao, the scientific advisor to Prime Minister and a visiting professor of Cambridge,
'Opening so may IITs in one year is a disaster. I had no idea that so many IITs have already come up in our country.
This is not a play. To open IITs, you need proper planning. There are makeshift campuses and some are even attending classes in old IITs. I came to know about this development after the institutes admitted students.
This is sad and I have told the prime minister and even the human resource development minister (Arjun Singh) about this. I am dissatisfied with the developments.'
Can I call this the 'second slip into the abyss of darkness'? First the IIM fees issue, and now this. Is the Prime Minister and the Human Resource Minister pushing hard to screw up our greatest institutions??
Are the IITians hearing me?
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
I have never been to Egypt. I had always thought that Egypt could be counted upon as one of the developed countries from that part of the globe. But, the BBC report, Egypt Voice : Sexual Harassment shocked me. Some excerpts:
"I get harassed 100 times a day. I tried everything to stop it but it doesn't stop. I wear loose clothes, I don't wear make up, I spend more than an hour in front of the mirror everyday thinking of ways to hide my body" says a shop-keeper
"Once I was waiting for the bus with my child and a car stopped, the guy waved his hand at me with a 20 pound note. It was unbelievable. Another time I was walking home and this guy unzipped his trousers in a car next to me" says a housewife.
It's shocking that such things happen and the authorities don't give a damn about it. I never thought Egypt will be like this. But, I am really happy to see that the women are building up the courage to speak out these atrocities to the outside world.
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
Google has finally announced their browser - Google Chrome. Well, they say it's a fresh take on the browsers. They have a comic strip which explains the process.
I find it a bit bad step from Google. Enthusiasts for sure, will download and might make another record, but what about the common users? I remember how difficult it was and how much time I spent in educating my colleagues about the advantages of using Firefox. And some of them who are reluctant, still stick to Explorer.
Here's an excerpt from Wikipedia about Chrome:
"While all of the major tabbed web browsers (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera) have been designed with window as the primary container, Google Chrome will put tabs first. The most striking way the user will see this is that tabs are at the top of the user interface, instead of below the controls, as in the other major tabbed browsers. In Chrome, each tab will be an individual process, and each will have it's own browser controls and address bar (dubbed omnibox), a design that adds stability to the browser. If one tab fails only one process dies, the browser is still running. Chrome will also feature a process manager which will allow the user to see how much memory and CPU each tab is taking up, as well as kill off unresponsive tabs."
Sounds good, doesn't it? The Beta will be released today. Let's see.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
I am not dead!!!
Instead of blogging, I am reading more nowadays...
Currently reading The Last Mughal by William Dalrymple.
Friday, July 4, 2008
"Mankind -- that word should have new meaning for all of us today.
We can't be consumed by our petty differences anymore.
We will be united in our common interests.
Perhaps its fate that today is the 4th of July, and you will once again be fighting for our freedom, not from tyranny, oppression, or persecution -- but from annihilation.
We're fighting for our right to live, to exist.
And should we win the day, the 4th of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared in one voice:
"We will not go quietly into the night!
We will not vanish without a fight!
We're going to live on!
We're going to survive!"
Today, we celebrate our Independence Day!"
(This is the one and only speech that has inspired me like 'I have a Dream'. You can read the full text here )
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Friday, June 20, 2008
"So, please accept my resignation, effective July 12. And I don't need any fancy parties or gold watches (I still have the one from '61 and '76). I will be spending more time with my family, tending to my small but growing alpaca herd and, of course, getting back to work with tin, my first love."
The celebrated founder and Director of Product Management of Flickr, Stewart Butterfield wrote this "bizarre" resignation letter. There were talks about this exit from last October itself, but the way he did it sounds funny. Anyway, check out the full letter at LA Times.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Download Firefox from Mozilla using this link and be a part of Guinness Book. I have already done, what about you?
Sunday, June 8, 2008
Infy, the poster boy* of Indian IT, is paving the road to innovation and success. It's time for others to wake up and, well, just follow!!
*BTW, for countries and cars, we use the feminine. What is it for Companies? He or She??
Tuesday, June 3, 2008
For those who don't know, Idli is a dish which looks like a small saucer made of rice. It is steam-cooked and eaten heartily with chutney and sambhar by South Indians. I can hear the cheers for the price cut!
When I first came to Chennai in June 07, one idli used to cost Rs 3. Slowly, it rose to Rs 4 and finally, in the peak of inflation in the last two months, it became Rs 5. By today's price cut it comes down to Rs 4.
Also, the brother of idli, dosa, and wife vada is also seeing a price cut from today.
Hail the legend of Idli.
A lot have been talked about Twitter. People are addicted to it, I am too!!
Well, I think that it's about Twitter down time that more people are talking about that Twitter itself. To prove the point, Twitter recently started a blog so that it can inform the world when the Tweets will be down.
Today, I came across this interesting site. It's called "Is Twitter Down?" It has the nice url, http://istwitterdown.com. It's a one page site which says either "Yes" or "No"
The site is run by Ryan King. His about page says,
"I work on websites, especially on web crawling and indexing. I listen to music."
Other than the Twitter one pager, he has also got two more. I Blame Kevin and I Blame Tankek. Check them out.
And btw, follow me on Twitter.
Monday, June 2, 2008
Sometime back, I has talked about the OOXML standardization and the voting in ISO. ISO approved it in April 2008. But now, three of the member nations,
The national standards organizations of these nations are challenging the flawed procedures in the ballot voting.
Will they become the Three Knights of Open Source? Let’s wait and see what happens next.
Here's an update. Professor Deepak Phathak from IIT Bombay writes an open letter on OOXML happenings in India.
Sunday, June 1, 2008
The 3 Fs of success.
Today, I went for the cycling in ECR organized by Chennai Runners group in association with TI cycles.(The manufacturers of BSA and Hercules)
A sunday morning sleep was disrupted. I woke up by 3:30 AM an got ready. By the time we reached (my friend Saju was also with me) the Toll Gate in Uthandi, it was 5 AM and you it was just the last few minutes of fake dawn. The yellow streaks were spreading its fingers.
It was the first time I was attending a program organized by Chennai Runners group (Even though I have been a member for sometime). Soon the trucks with cycles arrived. And also T-shirts.
We started by around 6 AM. It was a 15 km stretch till Croc Bank. The ride was smooth with small gradients in between. We reached Croc Bank by 6:50 AM. After having some chocolates (thanks to TI), we started back by 6:55.
The ride back was smooth. Except for the incident where I slipped off the road and went to sides!! We were back at Toll Gate by 7:35. There chappathis were waiting for us.(again thanks to TI) After catching up with some guys, we were back home by 8:30.
It was a great day. And I must add one more F. "Fantabulous!!"
Friday, May 30, 2008
Yesterday, Michael Arrington wrote about Naveen Jain and his scam, Intelius. He was talking about the sudden IPO decision and the scam that was bringing in revenue for Intelius.
I am not going to bore you with the details of the scam and Naveen’s previous scams. I will just take you through the repercussions.
Here are some interesting comments to Michael’s post.
Then, son came to the father's rescue. Naveen's son, Ankur Jain wrote a long reply to Micheal. And of course, Michael duly posted it in Techcrunch. Here are the "main" points:
"First I’d like to address your concern with Intelius and then the more important matter, my dad’s character. Someone who does as much technology reporting as yourself should be pretty familiar with companies such as Adaptive Marketing and how their product is integrated into services across the web. The service, similar to WebLoyalty, offers the users the ability to receive an offer that is relevant to their purchases by signing up for a free 7-day trial with a adaptive marketing [which can be canceled for no charge at any point in those 7 days]. Adaptive Marketing then provides that user with targeted offers and savings for as long as he or she remains a member. In fact, adaptive marketing provides this same offer through many other large web services. To call this a scam on Intelius, you would have to consider a series of other large companies including VistaPrint, Buy.com, Transunion scams as well [they all provide similar offers after checkout]. And frankly none of these companies are scammers whatsoever. Further, Intelius has one of the strongest business models I have come across with one of the most passionate set of leaders in the online industry. More importantly, these directors have an unbelievably high level of integrity."
"But the most important thing I would like to address is my "dad’s character". Outside of the corporate world, my dad has long been a supporter of many noteworthy organizations including United Way, Children’s Hospital, the University of Washington, TIE, Child Relief and You, and many more. He has taken the initiative to actively guide and mentor many young entrepreneurs in the country, thereby helping to lead the next generation of innovators and leaders to success. Yet, even within the corporate world, he has shown a strong conscience and high integrity. It is unfortunate the false allegations such as those made in the Seattle Times continue to circulate the web. But I would have expected a write like yourself to do some more research before referring to this article."
Wow! What a man Naveen is! I think Michael owns him an apology!!
Anyway, Techcrunch readers were eager to reply.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Time: 11:30 am (local time)
Date: May 29, 1953
Location: Somewhere in the Himalayas
Two people were making their way up the hills. Even though it was close to noon, their fingers were numb due to the cold. Tired and weary, but still they carried forth. And finally, they accomplished it!
It was today, 55 years back, that Tenzing and Hillary conquered Mount Everest, the tallest peak in the world. As usual, Google celebrates it.
Some thoughts: We all are trying to conquer our own personal goals. Our own personal Everest. Makes me remember of the Last Lecture by Randy Pausch - Achieving Childhood Dreams.
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
I was inquisitive to see the next pages. Below are the second and third page of search results!!
So, what was Esnips targeting? Did the word "web service" in my search misled the system into thinking that I was looking around for "such" services from the internet?
Read what I had written about the spamming in Esnips social networking sometime back.