Thursday, February 24, 2005

Snowed Out

Snow! Snow! Come again. Little Apoo wanna play!

Yes, they have a snow warning out (actually its the east coast I think)and work place is officially closed. Now this "officially closed" is a very tricky word. I would have gone to work, but my director called just before I was about to leave saying not to come in. So..... yippie!! Altho I will be working off VPN!

Did you know that Microsoft Windows 95/98 could crash if you have it running for more than 49 days!! Check out this
link. Of course they have a fix for it.

Safety first

Today we had a "New Hire" safety orientation. It involved a highly friendly person by the name of Fred talking about the various hazards and preventive measures. How to deal with fires (actually how to run away from fires), weather warnings, chemical spillage etc etc. An interesting part is in case of an evacuation we need to assemble in front of the building to an assigned group and head counts are taken to make sure no one is stuck inside.

Now we happen to have 2 huge buildings on campus and being the inquisitive pain in the butt, I had to ask one too many questions. What if both building alarms go off and I happen to be visiting the other building at that time? Do I have to get across all the way to the group gathering spot outside my building? Initially everyone found that to be an interesting question. It seems I am supposed to stand in the visitor group of the building I am visiting. OK. But then, how would my group know that I was safe, and not stuck in the building? I kinda tried to go on and find a flaw in the system. All groups have assigned spots of gathering, but what if the building is on fire and the wind blows in the direction we happen to stand? By this time I saw 3 people in the room yawn. I finally shut up when the person sitting next to me had a growling sound come out of his stomach.

Some of the guidance given out was highly impossible to follow. Like, when evacuating, dont make any noise. Dont talk. Heck... everyone knows thats not possible!!! At least all the women on my team know its not possible.

Some advice from experience: Dont ask questions when it gets close to lunch. People give you angry stares!!

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Emotional = Gets Drunk Faster

My new roomie is funny! He got his Canadian visitors visa today and was all excited about it and says we got to celebrate. Ok... I am not complaining. The only problem being this celebration idea struck him at 9 PM. He sheepishly asks me if I drink? Eh... doesnt it show on my face? So out of nowhere he gets out this huge bottle of Bacardi... There was a bottle (that too huge) of Bacardi in my house that I was not aware of???!!!

The good (or bad) part about him is he gets drunk on one glass. So when he had two glasses, I knew I was up for some fun conversation. An anecdote which I heard today (Note: I did not say it, I heard it!) follows:

"The more emotional you are, the more easy it is for you to get drunk! A very emotional guy gets drunk in one shot, not so emotional people take in a lot of liquor"

So all of you who wonder as to why you keep drinking and drinking without any effect (except the one on your liver which you will notice later), start getting emotional!

A couple of weeks back, I went to this Asian store. I can bet anything on this, but you will never have seen so many Asians together at one place (unless you are in Asia). Hardly any Indians, but millions of Chinese & Japanese. You dont wanna act smart in a place like this, considering the fact that 9/10 of the people would know Kung-Fu. An advantage of that store was I got some good fresh Promfret. In the USA, its called Butterfish. Doesn't matter as long as it tastes the same!

Whenever I start typing up an interesting story, Bird comes online and messages me to go off to sleep. Now that kinda reminds me that I could do with some sleep.... thanks Bird!

Monday, February 21, 2005

India Zeitgeist

Google has finally come up with an India zeitgeist. Check it out here.

Hope they expand on this more!

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Rhythmic Rhymes

To all my friends who cannot understand Hindi - I am very sorry about this posting. But its a take off on a Hindi song. Kindly bare with me (or just ignore this post).

"Main Aur Meri Tanhayee,
Aksar yeh glasses bhartay hai.
Tum Rum hoti toh kaisa hota?
Tum Vodka hoti toh kaisa hota?
Tum barf kay saath hoti, tum soda ke saath hoti,
Kabhi neat hoti, kabhi rocks pe hoti,
Tum hoti toh aisa hota.
Main aur meri tanhayee
aksar yeh glasses bharte hai.... "

Lyrics: Bird & Apoorva

Free, is all you wanna be!

Is free bad? Its not bad but it does kill competition. Here is how.

Lets take the Microsoft Anti-spyware tool as an example. Right now, it is free! Frankly, the general public does not think beyond that. Its free and its Microsoft (so hopefully its good). Lets download it and use it. As a matter of fact I was hit by spyware sometime in October and I got a copy of the GIANT anti-spyware and it got most of the spyware out (I say most since I feel there might be some more, but I dont have any proof). Coming back to the free software part. One side of the coin is that Microsoft wants its users to experience a malicious code free environment to operate on. Hence the spyware removal tool is given off for free.

The other side of the coin (which most might not notice) is that smaller companies who made spyware removal tools might suddenly find themselves out of business.

Microsoft took over GIANT. What GIANT used to sell, Microsoft is giving off free. They have the financial backing to do so. What they lose financially by giving out free anti-spyware can be easily made up with their profits in X-Box, Office etc. But a company whose bread and butter is the sales of its software which happens to be a spyware removal tool will suffer in this case.

One can argue back with a "Make your tool even better than Microsoft's and people will buy it." But still.... u see the point I like to make. Ones food is others poison. But thats what the market is all about. And Kudos to Microsoft for getting in the spyware removal tool for free.... but then, just like how IE put Netscape out of commission, lets hope Microsoft Anti-Spyware tool does not put other tools to rest but brings out healthy competition amongst them!

And please, no arguments about other free tools which are better than the ones sold, I know about them. Its just that spyware is an area I feel we cannot compromise on and we rather fight it together than individually!

Friday, February 18, 2005

An Apple a day...

The Chicago Sun Times has an article looking into the Mini (Apple). Apple's compact Mini sure to lure Mac-phobic buyers

But a few lines which catch my attention are:

"This isn't a computer: it's Apple's stealth bomb, designed to infiltrate homes and offices hitherto untouched by the presence of a Mac."

"And when Apple releases its new OS around the middle of the year, the Mac's technological lead over Windows, already huge, will instantly double."

Watch the tech. war over the next few years.... more importantly, watch for Steve Jobs. He is like the stealth bomb. Sits quiet, no one detects what he is upto untill the product is released with a big BLAST!

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Forehead for sale

Pratik Patel recently put up his forhead for sale on a site. Advertise your banner here. The cost, a whooping Rs. 1,00,000/- only! Well, come to think of it.... if someone walks into a store with "Nike" written on their forehead, he'll surely stand out.

The other day there was a blogger for sale on e-Bay. The bid actually went up to some $3000 odd I believe. Will offer his services to the company for 3 months over which he shall write some X no. of posts etc. etc. I wish I had the link... but I dont.

Bird and Abbs had this conversation amongst themselves and they have concluded that I should return back to India. Bird says"Stop working 12 hours a day"! Oh well, only 3 days back Abbs hit it for 18 hours. I need to catch up with my neighbour!

It seems Scoble published 128 posts or so in a matter of 12 hours. Now he feels burnt out and says he is taking a break for a few days. Bird says I am gonna get burnt out soon! Talking about Bird, here is his well rendered description of how travelling in the second class compartment of a train would be (in Mumbai).

On a different note, if I advertise "Air India" on my forehead, will they allow me to fly for free?

Monday, February 14, 2005

I am Pretty

Its embarassing when your entire team is having supper together and when they read out whats in their fortune cookies, yours says "You are looking Pretty".

Pretty Bald Apoorva. PBA! Thats the new me!

More Nanguys on the Blog(k)

Abbs has started blogging..... again. He was off the scene (okay, he was never really into it) since September or so. But now he is back and back with a vengeance! He is one person whose writings I like to read. Abbs, I'd rather read your orginal posts tho' than read some stuff which you copy-paste from the web (at times) & give credit to the source at the end. Why not just point a link to the article? Agreed each one has his own style, but Abbs originals are such a treat that the other copy paste's spoil the fun! Abbs could be a great blogger.... I'll always support him to keep blogging! If you visit his blog, dont forget to check out his link for the Ryze Network.... I need to join that myself, hopefully someday he'll publish my article. ;-)

Other guy, who I dread to mention is Bird! Yeah, he is been blogging since a while and has been regularly irregular, but thats Bird. Again, his writing style puts mine to shame (which is the reason I dont want to link to him). But his motto is "I will blog when I feel like it, not because I have a blog."

Good to see some Nanguys up and blogging.... slowly and steadily, we'll rock the web! In case you missed it, I have linked their names to their blogs.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Its Silver... Its Small... Its not mine! Wah!!!

Vineet got Joanna an iPod for Valentines!! Its sitting in the room right next to mine.... I think I am gonna steal it!!!

Anyone who feels they love me more than themselves.... Valentines is a perfect time to present me something I mentioned above (ok, I cant get any more direct!!). My birthday is coming up too...

Abbs the other day pointed out to a few devices which he says are better than the iPod. Hmmm... I didnt have too much time to compare them then (altho they looked classy) and I lost the links he had pointed me out to. Bummer!

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Fired for Blogging!

Wow! Its actually happening. People have been fired for blogging about their work. Surprisingly Google seems to be the new one to join the brigade. Mark Jen (who left his job at Microsoft) and took up Associate PM post at Google recently is rumoured to have been fired for blogging about the company. Here is the link. I have no further comments, except I better watch what I am typing on my work blog. Actually I could get fired for breaking NDA and then write a book on it. I'll make more money! I'll have a fictional part in that written by Bird.

Personally, I feel Google should not have fired the chap (if they have). Maybe warn him. If he blogs that the benefits Google offers are really nothing compared to those offered by Company X, I think he has the right to freedom of speech as long as he does not give out figures. I mean, companies themselves advertise, "The salary we offer is competitive to anyone in the industry". Its same as saying the benefits offered are not as good as those in Company X. Anyone beg to differ? Or is the problem that he compared stuff to a particular company X?

I think blogging is going to get interesting in the future. A blog will get you a job, but might also cost you a job. But some calculated risks have to be taken to get somewhere. No one changed things without taking a risk. Maybe Google will up its benefits/compensation package after this incident? I'll keep you informed if it does...! Heh!

Lastly, on a different note. Why did Mark Jen take up the job when he knew about the compensation/benefits scheme? If he took it solely on the basis of passion, then why crib about the benefits?

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Weekend Round-Up

As I write this the New England Patriots take on the Philadelphia Eagles at SuperBowl - XXXIX. I hope the Eagles win since their quarterback (Donovan Mc'Naab) is an ex-Syracuse and then again, I have lived close to Philly. The Patriots are the favorites tho'. Frankly, I dont care!!

To round it up its been a tough week with all work and no play (which means I have probably gained all the weight I had lost). I had always wondered why Google offered free food and that too different cuisines. The whole idea is if your employees dont leave work to grab lunch, eat in, they spend less time at eating and more time at work! Why they allow dogs on campus is still a puzzle. Stress busters I guess. But now I understand "Give your employees free food" funda specially when I have been eating in at my desk all this week! I wonder if they have people who would actually bring up food to an employees desk? Room-service, oops... I meant desk-service. In fact, someone who feeds them as they keep punching out code. Maybe I should shoot out an e-mail to Larry Page.

So I built this cool table and chair over the weekend. Here is what I like about America. If you are willing to put in some time and effort, you can get good things cheap!

Happened to speak to Abbs and there is a good chance he might be in USA sometime soon. All he needs is a visa. Hope to have a Nanguys dinner once he lands here. Take him around a bit.

My new look had my roomie laughing for half an hour. My aunt says that my family+cousins is having a meet-up coming Sunday hence to put up some more snaps for them to have a good laugh. Keep checking my MoBlog for more...!

Update: The Patriots won. It was close 24-21.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

The Bald and The Beastyful

No prizes for guessing who this bald guy happens to be!!