Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Google Labs - Google SMS Channel!! Amazing....

I want to share my feedback about an extremely innovative add-on from Google Labs called the Google SMS Channel.

This technology is like an RSS feed for mobile except for the fact that you will not require any GPRS connection for subscription. Rather, the news feed comes as an SMS alert to your mobile. You can either select the body or the title as per your requirement.

Amazing, isn't it??

So, how does this work?

Your task is to create an SMS channel for your subscribers so that they receive an SMS alert about the post as soon as it is posted on your site.
To create this channel, at first, you will have to go the following URL:-

Google SMS channel

Initially, there is a verification process where you have to authenticate your mobile number.
Now, after your mobile number gets verified, you can go ahead and create an SMS Channel feed by going to the following page:-

Create Channel

You can choose your information carrier(like feeds, group, news etc) and once you have the channel created, copy paste the URL http://labs.google.co.in/smschannels/subscribe/SashsBlog and send it to your friends.

They have to enter their mobile number and verify the same to receive SMS alert of the posts on their mobile phone.

You can also invite them through SMS by entering their mobile numbers.

Apart from this, you can also subscribe to other mobile alerts(like weather, real estate news or business).
Isn't this amazing?


a) You can change your mobile number anytime but you cannot transfer the ownership of this channel to others.

b) The SMS alert gets delayed most of the time, possibly due to heavy traffic of alerts.

c) Your subscribers are initially excited to receive an SMS alert of posts on your blog. But, this excitement fades away after some period of time. It is apparent that one will feel “spammed” if several SMS’s arrive in a day. This is true even though you have the option of limiting the number of alerts and the time when the alert will be sent.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Why voicing opinions counts- Bharti Airtel Bangalore!!!

In the end, I realized....Airtel is superb in its customer service!!!

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sachin xxx@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, Dec 12, 2008 at 2:21 PM
Subject: Thanks: Bill with reference to landline number xxxxxxxx:Payment done!! :)
To: Nodal.southabts@airtel.in, Shashikala.AN@airtel.in

Dear Shashikala and the South Nodal team,

Thank you so much for your e-mail and exceptional follow-up on the issue.

I have immediately made a payment of Rs 1,342.60 today for November bill referenced by Invoice # 965506257 .

This was the payment that I needed to do as per the amount reflected in the EBPP site(https://ebpp.airtelworld.com)

Mode of Payment Date of Payment Amount Paid
Payment - Self Care BillDesk Gateway 12/12/2008 1,342.60

Please refer to the snapshot which will illustrate that I have no dues now for my phone/DSL.

Kindly confirm the payment has been received for the month of November.

Thank you for your exceptional service.

Best Wishes,
Sachin Tewari

On Fri, Dec 12, 2008 at 12:09 PM, <Shashikala.AN@airtel.in> wrote:
Dear Mr.Sachin,

Greetings from Airtel Telemedia Services.

With reference to your email dated 6-Dec-08, regarding the broad band speed
and the reversal of bill as per Home 799 plan.

Based on the facts, we have reworked your invoice 965506257 as per
Unlimited 799 plan. The rental adjustment and the
usage adjustment of Rs.1589/- will be reflecting in your next invoice for
the month of December 2008.

After the above said adjustment towards the invoice number 965506257, the
amount payable from your end is Rs.1539/-.
The applicable service tax of 12.36% on the adjustment amount will be
adjusted with the service tax amount of your next
invoice for the month of December 2008.

We hope that our response and resolution is to your satisfaction and look
forward for a long term business associated
with you.

For further assistance, please reach us at 080-44444121 or E-Mail us at
care.karnataka@airtel.in or Fax us at 080-41112346

Assuring you Best of Services at all times.

Yours sincerely,

CSD Service Assurance - Nodal Escalation Desk
Bharti Airtel Limited / Telemedia Services / South Hub
#1106/10 &11, Garvebhavi Palya|Hosur Main Road | Near Novel Software |
Bangalore-560 068

Mail received from Sachin <xxx@gmail.com>
Hello Abu,

This is to inform you that I am really fumed by the service of your billing
department. I was on Broadband 799-256 kbps plan and on the 3rd November
asked for the plan to be migrated to Plan 499, 2mbps plan.
However, in spite of my repeated phone calls to the customer care, no
action was taken on my service(increase in speed) until 9th November when
finally the speed was migrated to 2 mbps.

Now, your folks have generated bills on 499 plan right from 3rd whereas
"technically" speaking the plan was migrated only on the 9th of November
because I was getting 256kbps speed till the 9th of November.

Kindly revise my bill as per the tariff below:-

3rd November to 9th November:: 799 plan
9th November onwards: 499 plan

I would not consider anything less than the above as I was still arguing(in
the form of numerous fone calls) with your personnel from 3rd to 8th
November saying that the plan has not been changed because I am getting
around 256kbps while measuring speed on http://speed.airtelbroadband.in/.
Your engineers were stating that 2mbps was not available for that

Finally, on giving a final notification for disconnection of the airtel
line, in case the speed is not provided, which was available earlier
because I changed plan twice, they changed the speed to 2mbps.

Kindly check your customer logs of my account for more details!!!!

On receiving the bill and checking with your customer care, your personnel
agreed to lower only the rentals for that period but not the data usage and
this is absurd. The very fact that the rentals are being lowered for the
period 3rd to 8th means that you are accepting that I was not on 499 plan
till that period of time. According to the tariff on 499, I should be
getting 2mpbs speed and not 256kbps line. Correct?? I follow
http://speed.airtelbroadband.in/ religiously so I knew the plan was not
migrated technically because I was getting speed in that rate and this is
what I have told your customer service.

If you do not consider my request for bill revision, kindly send someone to
collect the final settlement and disconnect this service. There are many
other service providers who are waiting in line for a NEW customer and I
already have BSNL broadband in hand.


Thursday, September 18, 2008

Gorkhali or Nepali?? ***Mixed feelings & Gorkhaland.***

There is a very thin line separating the two, in fact, I feel there is no line at all. We are the same race, where-ever we may be, only separated by our immediate needs and our aspirations.

So, how do we classify people as Gorkhas/Nepalis or non-Gorkhas/non-Nepalis? When we say a Gorkha, whom are we referring to?

This is a tough question.

We should stop living in the past talking about where we came from and what we are doing here. Everyone is a immigrant, so to say. If you trace history, the Gorkhas are immigrants in Nepal as well(according to the Wikipedia).

I do not worry about this at all.

My vision of Gorkhaland is different from all others, if not all, but the majority.

My vision of a stronger nepali speaking community is different from many-I should say the majority... The road map to gorkhaland should be redrawn and ideologies modified to include all people of the hills <>

If people want Gorkhaland for economic growth of the hills and this is the prime reason then, the movement should not be only a movement of Gorkha Identity crisis. As we already know "deep inside", there is no identity crisis at all since Gorkhali/Nepali speaking people are a majority in the hills and it is our hills. The state can have the name Gorkhaland but should have something for people living there through centuries, for e.g) the Marwaris.

Personally, I believe that Sikkim and Darjeeling are better as separates. Even though we are brethren, yet, the environment, the way of life and line of thinking is way too different. Now, if someone's striving for a Sikkim-Darjeeling merger, we are looking for alternatives to Gorkhaland. The map of Gorkhaland never included Sikkim and Sikkim has always been "politically" good to people of Gorkhaland. Frankly, funds will stop for the movement and so will the movement.

The question on the need for Gorkhaland should be changed and the answers must carry aspirations of all Nepali or Gorkhali speaking people of the hills, wherever their ancestors may be from.

If Marwaris or Biharis or Bengalis for that matter, are not made welcome in our dream state Gorkhaland or involved in the road-map to achieve this, I cannot see this dream getting materialized, certainly not in the year 2010.

We need to redraw our focus and every Nepali speaking individual of the hills must have something to get in this movement. Further, needless to say, We must have leaders we can trust blindly, leaders driven by passion and not by intentions.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

A Wednesday- A short snapshot of the bollyhood movie.

I sat down to watch the movie "A Wednesday" on a late Tuesday and did not rue my decision in the end.

The movie is great, the story may not be different but the end certainly has a twist.

Anupam Kher and Naseruddin Shah have stolen the show with their captivating performance.

Jimmy Shergill is good as well.

I would rate it 4 /5

Anyday, watch "A Wednesday"!

Friday, July 04, 2008

The New Yahoo! Mail :(

Things don't come in for free after all!!!

Where is Unlimited storage now??

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

The new Yahoo! Mail

Ever since I was introduced to the Internet, I always wanted to have an e-mail address "firstnamelastname@yahoo.com".

Yahoo! was the most happening e-mail provider at that time and it was a great feeling t0 have your personalized e-mail address there.

But, I never got lucky and it never "boomed" like the way g-mail did and I landed up using google mail which is relatively very quick and simple.

This morning, interestingly, I recieved a marketing e-mail from Yahoo!Mail at my g-mail address.

The e-mail mentioned new Yahoo! addresses @ymail.com and @rocketmail.com and I thought of trying my luck. I did get an e-mail address I always wanted to have but what followed was what got me more excited.

There is a new feature(a great strategy I should say) from Yahoo! to import contacts and hold your breath..e-mails..from a list of e-mail providers including top ones like googlemail and hotmail.
The best part is that Yahoo! now has unlimited storage available to users. For people bored with "archiving" e-mails from google or having terrible time with the POP feature, I think this is a fresh lease of life. The transfer feature is done by a third party (www.trueswitch.com) and it is relatively quick and easy. Ensure that POP is disabled for gmail before proceeding. The wait-time for e-mails to get copied to your Yahoo! account is approximately 24 hours, as per the notice but the process starts right-away.

There was no way in which we could "bulk" forward googlemail to another ID and therefore, taking a backup of your e-mails seemed impossible, especially when you got around 15965 emails worth 6 gigs.

Kudos and Thanks to Yahoo! mail for solving this problem.

You certainly have my allegiance now :)

Sunday, June 08, 2008

And you thought you are not being watched???

Camera in Sony World, Koramangala signal.

Looking forward to the days when Bangalore Traffic Police start levying a hefty fine on people breaking traffic rules even in the night.


Tuesday, June 03, 2008

MicroYahoo!! or Yahoo!-A Microsoft Company ?

With reports coming in indicating that Yahoo! and Jerry Yang snubbed a $40 per share offering by Microsoft, Jerry Yang might have intentionally Micro(ed) Yahoo!'s credibility in the market.
Shareholder Carl Icahn has been strongly criticizing the board of directors for their refusal to let Yahoo! be acquired by Microsoft. He has gone on to label the entire episode as a big betrayal by the directors in protecting the shareholders interest.

Yahoo! always maintained that Microsoft undervalued its share and now, when the deal is off, Jerry seems to run out of answers to explain his resistance.

It might not be long before the shareholders dissolve the board. Jerry meanwhile has some time(till July) to strike some sort of a deal with Microsoft to protect the board from getting dissolved. If not, Yahoo! might very well become "Yahoo!-A Microsoft Company".

From a shareholders perspective, at least, it is better than becoming MicroYahoo!

With acquisitions and mergers in like hot-cakes nowadays, it makes me wonder if there will be only five or six software/IT companies 50 years down the line. My list is more pruned- Microsoft, Google, IBM.


Saturday, May 31, 2008

Viacom vs Youtube.com vs TalentTrove.com

I was surprised to see my Youtube.com videos in another website www.TalentTrove.com.

I would not have stumbled on this website had I not searched "Google.com" for my name, in the process of checking my blog-site page ranking.

The site(www.talenttrove.com) is still in the "beta" stage but one can find tons of videos on the site. I suspect they are all taken("Leeched") from different websites while some are uploaded by users.

In the "About us" columnn, the following words describes the reasons for starting the website.

"We started TalentTrove with true artists in mind. From singing to advanced needlework, all talent is an art and will now have the chance to be appreciated. Why have your talent lost on sites full of random videos only two people on the planet understand? Here at TalentTrove, you will have the ability to surround your uploaded talent with others sharing common interests. Talent categories, personalized pages and social networking will allow you to show the world your talent. Think of it as a virtual stage, gallery, studio, TV station, you name it. It's a place where artists of every type, from anywhere, can get a real shot and meet some contacts and friends in the process."

I didn't know that I was so talented- talented enough to have someone search my videos in YouTube and post it on their website without my permission.

Furthermore, my "profile" location on TalentTrove is wrongly mentioned as "Indonesia" instead of "India" and the video descriptions are also incorrect.

While www. youtube.com is already facing a $1 billion lawsuite from viacom over video infringement, it would be interesting to note how Google reacts to sites like www.talenttrove.com using their videos.


Monday, May 26, 2008

About Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and Karnataka BJP

This title might be a little amusing to many and if I was reading this post for the first time, I would also contemplate about a common connection between the three. Of course, one can understand that Barrack and Hillary are fighting it out for the democratic Presidential nomination, but Karnataka BJP surely doesn't fit into the picture.

Well, I had thought of predicting an outcome of the recent Karnataka elections but somehow missed writing a post about the same. And, this time, I do not want to miss out on my prophesy:)

I am not a critic of the Gowda lineage. Infact, I was happy about Kumaraswamy's governance. But, when "he" failed the coalition that supported him so well, citing reasons Bangaloreans could not digest, like many, I predicted that his downfall was inevitable.

With BJP still popular and waiting for a comeback and the Congress still nursing wounds of being in opposition, I knew that the Saffron brigade would march to its first glory in the South.

And, it has happened. On May 28th, the BJP government under Yedurappa will be sworn-in, and thankfully this time, without its unreliable coalition.

So, what do I want to predict about the US democratic Presidential nomination? It is not a statement that is unique but it is an option lying with the delegates of the Democratic party and also the candidates, somewhere in the back of their minds.

It is undeniable that the majority of the votes received by the two candidates can be classified as "black" votes and "white" votes.

Hillary and Obama have both stated that they would certainly like to be THE nominee and not a running mate. But, Hillary, in particular has carried on the campaign even when it is clear that she would not be able to catch-up with Obama.

Further, both have them have religiously restrained from damaging personal attacks on each other. Hillary's husband, the former President Bill Clinton seems to have lost hope on his wife's campaign and had recently hinted that her aspirations could be met one day, if she becomes the Vice-President for now, in short, Obama's running mate.

So, if Barrack wins the nomination and nominates Hillary has his running mate, then nothing should stop the Democrats from winning the Presidential elections.

Obama should be aware that Senator Clinton is more popular than Senator Edwards, who is also being talked about as his running-mate. It would be generous and wise on his part to nominate a person who has never let his campaign be a cake-walk, rather than a person who conceded defeat half-way through the nomination process.

This also means that I am strictly ruling out McCain winning the elections. The Bush incumbency factor will largely be responsible for his debacle. And I think, America needs a young face as its leader ably supported by a lady who women, over the world look up to as an inspiration.

For a change, let us see if the party stands over vendetta.
Yeah, CHANGE is what I believe in, at least for this time.

Nokia E50 Review

I will not be writing about the technical specifications for the phone. The details are easily available on the Internet. Rather, I would be talking about my end-user experience.

a) Looks: Good, slim for a smartphone, compact vis-a-vis the Blackberry's. The cover that comes along with the phone is pretty cool.

b) Keys: Easy for people who can type really quickly with both hands.

c) Joystick: I had a Sony Ericsson K500i which gave me a traumatic joystick experience. I trust Nokia blindly and it looks to be good till date. Scrolling might be a problem though.
If you have thick fingers, this is probably not the joystick phone you are looking for.

d)Battery: Bad, especially if you use Bluetooth handsfree.

d)Utilities: Install Mail for Exchange and configure your office e-mails easily(Microsoft Exchange)

e)Wait time: As you increase the number of applications, the phone tends to become slower. So, install only those applications that you can't live without.

f) Software and Utilities: WWW.DOTSIS.COM is a good forum for the applications.

g) FM out: FM radio is missing??!!

My rating:
Good for Rs 8000+ INR(Approx. 188 USD) but be ready to carry your charger everywhere you go.

I will give it 2.75 out of 5 and would recommend Nokia E51 based on my experience.

Friday, February 29, 2008


Why is budget called a budget??

Sachin says "Because after its announced, it makes people buzz like a JET"

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Is Windows taking long time to start-up? Here is what you can try!

My computer used to take a lot of time to boot and used to get stuck for more than a minute prior to the logon screen which showed “Preparing Network Connections”.

After much research, I think I got a resolution. Here it is:-

a) Install BootVis
BootVis - Microsoft tool to provide faster XP boot and resume times

BootVis is a performance trace visualization utility that you can use with Windows XP systems. Customer research shows a frequently requested feature that users want from their PCs is fast system startup, whether from cold boot or when resuming from standby or hibernation.

The Windows development team at Microsoft has taken bold steps in making fast startup PCs a reality with the Microsoft Windows XP operating system.

Here are some key features of "BootVis":

· Boot to a useable state in a total of 30 seconds
· Resume from Hibernate (S4) in a total of 20 seconds
· Resume from Standby (S3) in a total of 5 seconds

This tool is great for slow PC.

a) Also, if you are not using wireless network connections, right click on it go to properties and uncheck every listed item there. Thereafter, disable wireless network connection from services and then right click on my computer, go to manage, device manager and navigate to Network adapter. Then right click on the available “Wireless adapter” and disable here. This will also stop the wireless icon from appearing in the system bar. Note that the loading of the icon also contributes to boot-up time.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Is svchost.exe eating up your Windows resources?

Is svchost.exe eating up your Windows resources?

These are steps that might help diagnose the issue.

1. Check if your system has the latest windows update.

2. Even if the "Automatic Windows Update" service has been turned on, cross-verify from the Microsoft Windows patch update download page that your system has the latest update.

3. Restart the service.

My guess is that it tried to get the download but since the service was not running well. It caused the process svchost.exe to EAT up memory.

If you have more than 2 ati2evxx.exe process running in the process list, then do the following:-

a) Give a search *ati2evxx*.

c) If there are more than 2 dll files, then leave the one in c:\windows\system32
and rename the other file to say, ati2evxx.dll.old.

b) If there is only one process, then rename the file and leave ati2evxx.exe as it is.

Statutory warning: It worked for me without any adverse affect but I cannot gaurantee that it will work for you as well perfectly.