22 November, 2004

Spam gets religion -ZDNet:
The growth area in unsolicited e-mail is now messages that contain religious themes. It is exempt from spam laws, it's legal according to most national laws, it's not commercial, and that's interesting in a way, because there is a cost, yet no financial return. But they may believe there is a spiritual return.

21 November, 2004

Standing on the shoulders of giants - Google Scholar -The Times of India:
Google Scholar, a beta version of which went on stream mid-week, will enable users to look for scholastic literature like peer-reviewed papers, books, abstracts and technical reports.

18 November, 2004

IE, IE ko nah bolo, mangta hai kya - Firefox, toh bolo! -Myself

Heh, just another line of praise for the world's sexiest browser, inspired from the song Aaee aaee yo kil wo, mangta hai kya - woh bolo from Rangeela. Do you understand a word of what I am saying? No? Ok, so you have no idea what Firefox is. Heck, I guess you don't even know what a browser is! Doesn't matter. Even I didn't know when I wasn't a geek. Most do not know what a Browser is. It is the big blue "e" icon on which you click and access internet. Get it? No? Now? Good.
Now this big blue "e" icon is Internet Explorer browser which is a very insecure product, especially if you access bank, trading sites. Also, it's a soft target for virus, hackers, spywares, useless toolbars, hijackers etc. Bouncer gaya? Well, that was intentional :p. These are the things that one finds in almost every PC with net access. Sad. And it's found that more often than not, the user himself is responsible as s/he doesn't follow simple security practices like intalling firewall, antivirus software ....and use Internet Explorer - the big blue icon, incase you have forgotten! Oh, I think, I am diverting from the original topic. Better, if you too divert from my blog and download and install Firefox !

For fellow geeks: Check out this hilarious article
Dear IE, I'm leaving you for good on zdnetindia.
Sun invites outside involvement with Java 6 -Zdnet:
Sun published very early versions of the source code of the Java 2 Standard Edition (J2SE) 6.0, due to release in first half of 2006. Sun has been wrestling with the open-source Java issue for years. Sun executives have in the past expressed reluctance to make Java open-source software. But now one part of Java is open source, and Sun pledged in June that the rest will follow suit, eventually. Sun lets others see the Java source code after agreeing to the Java Resource License, which Sun introduced in 2003 to encourage broader involvement.

To submit their own code, programmers will have to transfer copyright ownership to Sun, Hamilton said. The bigger barriers will be cultural, he predicted: outside programmers convincing Sun programmers that their code is up to snuff; and Sun programmers helping outside programmers learn the ropes of the Java code quality review processes.
Gates world's most spammed person -The Economic Times:
Microsoft chairman Bill Gates receives four million e-mails daily, most of them spam, and is probably the most 'spammed' person in the world but unlike ordinary users, the software mogul has an entire department to filter unsolicited e-mails and only a few of them actually get through to his inbox.

13 November, 2004

Executive Suite

Why bandwidth is costly in India? -Techree
1. India still "buys bandwidth". It does not actually participate in the worldwide Internet network as a provider, but as a consumer.
2. Untapped last mile connectivity.
3. Taxes at multiple levels, which sometimes add upto as high as 24%.

Rural Outsourcing -Myself

Forget Philippines and China as India's competitors for outsourcing business. Enter Rural outsourcing. Rural outsourcing basically refers to outsourcing to rural areas of America rather than outsourcing to foreign countries. Rural Sourcing, a start-up offers services such as application maintenance and Internet development for roughly 40 percent less than what other domestic tech outsourcers charge. They claim "Rural Sourcing's fees are about the same as the overall cost of using an Indian outsourcer if you consider factors such as communication costs, travel expenses and inconvenience." ...hmm, still Indian outsourcing reduces costs by 1/10th, and that is far greater than what they have on offer. I guess I am taking India's side coz I am an Indian. Perhaps. From an American point of view, patriotism can really drive this thing called rural-outsourcing, and why not. Apart from this I don't think it has any serious advantage over India.
Related links:

12 November, 2004

Terrorists may use net for future attacks -Economic Times
The hacking and identity theft tools now earning mega bucks for mainly eastern European organised crime could be used in terrorist attacks, an FBI official said. FBI deputy assistant director Steve Martinez said cyber crime is no longer the domain of teenage geeks but had been taken over by gangs. “Tools and methods used by these increasingly skilled hackers could be employed to cripple the US economy and attackcritical infrastructure as part of a terrorist plot,” Martinez said.
Now, thats scary!

10 November, 2004

New file-sharing software -Bittorent- tears through the net -Economic Times
A file-sharing program called BitTorrent has become a behemoth, devouring more than a third of the internet’s bandwidth, and Hollywood’s copyright cops are taking notice. BitTorrent accounts for an astounding 35% of all the traffic on the internet — more than all other peer-to-peer programmes combined — and dwarfs mainstream traffic like web pages.

Rather than downloading the actual digital file that contains the show, instead you would download a small file (from websites like supernova.org) called a “torrent” onto your computer. When you open that file on your computer, BitTorrent searches for other users that have downloaded the same “torrent”. BitTorrent’s “file-swarming” software breaks the original digital file into fragments, then those fragments are shared between all of the users that have downloaded the “torrent”. Then the software stitches together those fragments into a single file that a users can view on their PC.

Sites like Slovenia-based Suprnova (suprnova.org) offer thousands of different torrents without storing the shows themselves. Suprnova is a treasure trove of movies, TV shows, and pirated games and software. Funded by advertising, it is run by a teen-age programmer who goes only by the name Sloncek. “They’re doing something flagrantly illegal, but getting away with it because they’re offshore,” said Mr Cohen. He is not eager to get into a battle about how his creation is used. “To me, it’s all bits,” he said.
"To me, it's all bits" ..lolz
Firefox maps its next moves -Zdnet
Now that it has the Firefox 1.0 milestone under its belt, the Mozilla Foundation has identified three areas for future growth and development: Cell phone and small device browsing, desktop search integration, and OEM distribution.The first key initiative is Mozilla's Minimo project to create a stripped-down version of Firefox for use with cell phones, set-top boxes and other nondesktop computing devices. Minimo got a shot in the arm this year when Nokia invested in it.

Rumors have swirled about a possible collaboration between the open-source group and Google. Mozilla was in talks with OEMs to get Firefox placed on the desktops of new computers. As of now, all of Firefox's distribution comes through downloads--a major hurdle for widespread adoption--while IE comes pre-loaded on the vast majority of computers.
Mozilla & Google -partners, ah, that would be great! C'mon Microsoft, "innovate"! ;)
Microsoft feels Mozilla's fire(fox) -InformationWeek
The Mozilla Foundation’s Firefox 1.0 browser was released today, and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer marketing team is already, understandably, on the defensive. According to stats from WebSideStory, IE’s market share has slipped from just over 95% in the summer to slightly under 93% today. That’s not a lot, but you can see the trend, and it’s enough to make Microsoft nervous. A major upgrade to IE isn’t planned until 2006. One of Microsoft’s biggest challenges is that only 20% to 25% of the worldwide Windows customer base is using the most up-to-date version of IE. But if Firefox continues to eat Microsoft’s lunch, that plan could change. Says one Microsoft official, “We could always rethink our plans.”
Microsoft will never improvise unless they are forced to!

07 November, 2004

Firefox is the best, oh really ? -Zdnet
IE doesn't follow all standards and thats coz, Microsoft chose to make IE fit the code developers produced, however non-standard, so that compatibility with IE involved little extra work. There is see no reason why we shouldn't expect the same of alternative browsers such as Firefox.
Hmmm..Think of the long term benefits...think,think and you will have the answer.

Firefox is probably a safer security bet than IE. Don't be lulled, however, into a false sense of complacency. Firefox certainly doesn't use Browser Helper Objects, a technology misused by "spyware" vendors to monitor where a user goes on the internet. On the other hand, it's not true that Firefox isn't extensible. Binary installers (the standard way Browser Helper Objects find their way onto a Windows system) can install Firefox extensions just as easily as they install IE extensions. In other words, the reason Firefox doesn't face the threats IE faces is that they aren't the browser used by 95% of consumers.
This is where open-source chips in. There are certainly more developers contributing to Mozilla than IE, and more the developers, better the results. Why I don't recommend Firefox by Adam Kalsey is also a nice read. He basically highlights the interface and marketing problems with Firefox.

06 November, 2004

No mutiny from Microsoft's bounty -Techrepublic
In the year since Microsoft kicked off its Anti-Virus Reward Program, it has tallied only a single success. The program has offered $1 million to informants who help close official investigations into four major viruses and worms.
Time for IT sector to look within now, feel experts -ZDNet :
"In Australia, we have great infrastructure, great quality of life but not much people to use it. So Australia has to come to India (in search of a market)..Yesterday, I heard that TCS had over 38,000 people. We don't even know that many IT professionals in our country,"
ROM Brain: A person who refuses to accept input and ideas from other people.

04 November, 2004

NASSCOM = Software, ISA = Chip Design -ZDNet
The newly-formed Indian Semiconductor Association (ISA) plans to be for the semiconductor industry what Nasscom is to the software industry.
P2P for cell phones -ZDNet :

FoneShare, an application introduced by NewBay Software, does let people share their collections of ring tones, graphics, songs etc with strangers. FoneShare will debut next year as a subscription service, running over privately owned and operated cellular networks, and the sharing will be done via Web sites controlled by a wireless operator.

Because the networks are private, wireless operators can easily identify which files are being shared and even shut down handsets that are doing a suspicious amount of file trading. "If there's any piracy going on, anywhere, the wireless operator can track you down," Holahan, Chief Executive, said. "It's like the Internet, without all the crazy stuff."