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Showing posts from 2006

Why 24 hour news channels are bad...no make it stupid.

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I went to grab water in the break area and saw the TV spouting news of Sanjay Dutt's impending verdict today. And there was this anchorman telling the news of Sanjay Dutt leaving his house. Should I even honor the word "news" for what the anchorman told? Do we have so much happening that it has to be told as it happens? How is it going to affect me today - will I lose electricity today, will there be a traffic jam in Bangalore? It wont be even a blip in my radar - nor so for the billion people in the country - perhaps for the one or two souls called producers who have invested on Mr.Dutt. Things are rapidly falling the Fox,CNN way - I remember once seeing some thing like this : breaking news : 10.01 PM somecriminal has been escorted by somePD to the airport, 10.08PM : he has been seated in the plane, 10.23 PM : he has been served prawn rice, 10.40 PM : he has been escorted to the loo. What idiocy is this? How do I save myself from the idiot box and the idiots pushing stu…

Disconnected from mothership !!

Today I removed my blog ka link from Thoughtworks profiles site. I had always wanted to do it - because it was kind of inhibiting my writing. I should watch what I say, be politically right - even though TW does not say anything of that sort - I felt I have to be a responsible citizen and not land TW in trouble. Now I can write what I feel about Karnataka Govt, the Indian Govt, Indian cricketers, Airport Road, people who park their cars on the road jamming traffic, the smokers who smoke their and my lungs out, the ridiculous property prices in Bangalore, the sad state of working children, our friendly neighbors P & C and so much more !! I thought I will start another blog - when I am this lazy to write in one blog itself - I will end up not writing on any of them.

Later !!

I am back on broadband in Bangalore !!

ahh...my 7th grade English teacher would have written a "V.G" for the alliteration in the title. Anyway - last week the nice folks at AirTel set up a DSL modem in our home - and life is at supposedly 256Kbps now. Had hathway cable internet till now - but it was hopeless - net was good for checking emails - sudo apt-get updates will never complete. The list of woes is endless and it all got sorted out after the bandwidth expanded.

Anyway here is what I have accomplished at home. A full fledged ubuntu "headless" server.

Subversion :

This was the first app I installed. You might be wondering why subversion. It keeps some of the files - like an excel sheet of expenses I have - versioned. I am trying to organize lot of stuff - and its time to get disciplined and versioned !!

Torrentflux :

This is one sweet app. Throws a web interface to the torrent downloads.

Wiki :

I have installed phpWiki. Why wiki?? I have been using it at work for the past couple of years and I have alway…

Moving back to India

For some reason I have kept this blog impersonal - because I was too lazy to write about myself, or perhaps nothing big happened. Well anyway now I have to - We are moving back to India. Thoughtworks has accepted my request for transfer to Bangalore and we are moving in July 06.


Top 10 things I will miss when I am in India :

10. Starbucks
9. Netflix
8. Apple show room
7. Interstates and its gas stations and its restrooms !!
6. Daily show ( thanks youtube!! )
5. NPR ( thanks podcasts )
4. 8.00pm sun light, snow ( but I dont like the cold that comes with it)
3. BestBuy window shopping
2. Americans in general - and especially the friends I made whom I might or might not meet again.
1. Hot water anytime and long showers.

2 months of linux bliss

I have Ubuntu dapper running on Dell Latitude D610 - with some help and inspiration from my colleague Josh Cronemeyer - a linux whiz. I have tried linux in fits and starts but never covered so much ground as I have in the past 2 months - and now very rarely I boot into Windows world.

Pros :

Stable.
Gnome.
Boots up fast, everything is ultra responsive - compared to windows xp on the other side of the laptop.
Lotus notes on wine works surprisingly ok. ( damn you IBM for lotus notes )
Cisco VPN !!
Java compilation time - 20% less time than windows
apt-get install
Multi desktops, desktop spanning.
Wireless support much better from Dapper onwards.
Hard drive never starts threading - uses virtual memory the way it is supposed to be.
I run lot of stuff all the time and the OS never twitches.

Cons :

No TextPad
No TortoiseSVN
Lotus notes ( damn damn you IBM )
Colibri - perhaps there is an equivalent - havent researched
Lot to catch up with OS X - but far ahead than that thing called windows.

How to become a Java Developer?

Who is this post for?

Anyone trying to switch careers ( I was in mainframes, asp then php developer then a swing developer before I switched to this web-app java development), or who is already in Java and wants to get to the next level.

What this post is about?

Few years back I was slogging on a swing app without knowing what the market was all about - though the swing app taught me the good and bad about Java - it did not help me in getting a job. This post is a guideline for that directionless soul...

this.post :

Heres some philosophy of mine. Ask yourself - how much did you spend last year on books on technology? If technology is your livelihood, think of it as an investment. You need to invest a lot ( and read a lot ) to get good returns. So do not hesitate to buy books, magazine subscriptions - its worth every penny/paisa/rouble.

Lets start.

Step 1 : Get to know Java's strength.

Assuming it was me years ago, happily coding php in dreamweaver and nodding along with the posters in sl…

Bad Ant in Fedora linux

I messed up the Java that came with Fedora linux and had JAVA_HOME pointing to Sun's JDK. Then I downloaded Ant, set ANT_HOME to this new location and whenever I typed ant i got an error message :

Unknown argument: -cp

Even though when I did a "which ant" it pointed to the correct location which was in ANT_HOME/bin/

Googling did not give me any useful results. Then I thought am I the only one having this problem - so I tried in yahoo ( was planning on trying dark lord's search if it didnt work) - and got the first result with the solution itself. You can try this search query "ant unknown argument: -cp" to see how Yahoo trumps Google in this. Google if you are reading this clean up your act.

Anyways heres the solution. Remove the ant that came with fedora.

Become root and type : "yum remove ant"

Done.

How to browse the web...in 2006!!

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Well heres a primer for the un initiated in the new www. Googling for something has become so 90s. I will list some tools/techniques I use daily which are far more effective.

1. RSS - RDF Site Summary, or Rich Site Summary, or Really Simple Syndication

Think of it as SMS text messages sent by websites all the time. Once you subscribe to it you need not hit the website to see if there is any new content. Firefox, Safari, Opera all have RSS built right into them ( The Dark Lord is still building as of this post) . So if you have the urge to see whats happening in the world you need not type cnn.com - instead you can just pull up the RSS list to see if anything interesting has happened before you last checked - It saves time, saves bandwidth and you can quickly check across multiple such websites in under a minute.

The above screenshot is one I took just now.

2. del.icio.us - A social book marks manager.

Before I go further lets go back to early 90s - pre Google days. There was this websit…