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2006-06-22

Welcome Rohit!

On April 27th, one of my co-workers, Mathieu Wache accepted my invitation to be a contributed to this technology blog. I had expressed my wish to have more contribution from other techies that share my passion for technology.

Andy Mei is on a business trip to Japan but will soon join us. And today, Rohit Pai became a contributor for scorion.net. Rohit proved us that he can cook! :) I added Rohit's blog to the links on the right side where he is sharing his recipes.

Gregorian Calendar

In my alumni e-mail list, somebody questioned the origins of Gregorian Calender... An informative link was given that explained a lot of things I did not know about the subject. check it out, you may find it interesting too.

2006-06-19

Analytical Puzzles

Just noticed this on popular del.icio.us pages. On the site, there are logic problems in varying difficulty levels. Be careful though, you may get addicted to them :)

Google Notebook Review

The more I use Google Notebook, the more I like it! When looking for information on web, I usually find myself taking notes using MS OneNote, Outlook > Notes or plain notepad. As my blackberry is sync'ed with Outlook Notes, I tend to remind myself to put notes in there but it has a lot of limitations.

What Google Notebook gives me is the ability to select some part of a web page & simply make it a note that's available to me wherever I can access internet.

I downloaded & the plugin for IE and Firefox on all my computers. Both plugins work equally well. I created a number of notebooks as seen on the screenshot. If I want to move a note from one notebook to another, I can simply drag and drop it over.

I can edit the note anytime and really like the fact that it captures the original URL, I created the note from. So, if I have to go back to the original document, there is a reference to it.

By default, only "you" can see your notes. they are private. However, if you want to make them public, you can choose to do so. And of course, google's fabulous search engine lets you search your own, or public notes effectively.

What can be improved? Well, this is pretty good for taking notes from web sites. One step further would be to highlight any part of any document and upload it as a note! Now, I think that would be a killer-app!

2006-06-17

Hi-Res Panoramic Images of Paris

Mathieu should have posted this but I saw it before him :) Here is a link to high resolution panoramic pictures of beautiful Paris.

Did you know that France was the most visited country in the World in 2004?
2. Spain
3. US
...
12. Turkey
(Source: http://www.world-tourism.org/facts/menu.html)


Site is a bit slow but I saw some mirrors in digg. I don't know for how long they will stay:

http://www.gourp.com/paris-360-110.jpg
http://195.62.29.95/paris-360-110.jpg

15,000 px X 520 px (1.8 mb)
http://duggmirror.com/design/Hi-Res_Panoramic_Image_of_Paris/fc08a2cad710de1774c7d1d76eb11fce_paris-360-110.jpg

Direct Links to two other images on same website:
4200 px X 520 px (500 kb)
http://www.arnaudfrichphoto.com/Images/paris-neige-panorama.jpg

15,000 px X 520 px (1.9 mb)
http://www.arnaudfrichphoto.com/Images/paris-360-110-texte.jpg

2006-06-16

On Bill Gates...

When I read today that Bill Gates is stepping down from day to day managerial works of Microsoft, I felt happy for him. Unlike many other rich people of the world all throughout the history, he did not become slave of his own wealth and managed to put it into good work. So I always admired him!

"With great wealth comes great responsibility. Many years ago I made it clear that almost all my wealth would be returned to society," Gates said in an afternoon press conference in Redmond, Wash.

I think it could not be put better. He has created a giant industry and became the richest man on earth all in a very short time. He is a one of a kind, a great man that I think, most of us in the IT world owe him a big "thank you"!

He is setting a huge example that I hope other rich people will follow! Thank you, Bill!

2006-06-12

Opt-Out of Credit Card Offers

Are not you sick & tired of receving credit card offers everyday? Don't you want the junk mail STOP? Who does not? :)

Well, you may not be able to stop getting all junk mail but to remove (or add???) your name from firm offers based on your credit information, it's possible to call Consumer Credit Reporting Industry Opt-in, Opt-Out Number: 1-888-567-8688
or write to:
Equifax Options, P.O. Box 740123, Atlanta, GA 30374-01123
Experian Target Marketing, P.O. Box 919, Allen, TX 75013
TransUnion Opt Out Request, P.O. Box 505, Woodlyn, PA 19094-0505

You can either choose to opt-out for 5 years or permenantly and you can add your name back any time you want.

To give you and idea, it took me about 5mins to remove both my name and my wife's name for 5 years. Of course, because they already fed many businesses with your information offers may keep on coming for quite sometime. and if you want your name to be removed permenantly, then they will send you a form that you need to fill in and send back to them and you will be removed from the lists of 4 Credit Reporting Agencies.

2006-06-10

Ubuntu Dapper Install Issues

Today, I downloaded Ubuntu Dapper 6.06 LTS Desktop CD to install it on a new hard drive. I ran into some issues but luckily I was able to fix them. I will write them down here just in case someone out there runs into a similar issue and may benefit from the solution

1) Ubuntu CD would not boot
I knew that CD was good because it was booting fine on a different PC. On the other hand, if I inserted an XP or Vista set-up CD, they would be detected fine but not the ubuntu CD.

I suspected that CD was not detected because of the Promise UltraATA133 TX2 card I was using with my "large" drives. The motherboard of my HP XW6000 pc did have ATA100 but not ATA133.

Anyway, to solve the problem, I disconnected my DVD drive from Promise Controller and connected it directly to the motherboard's Primary ATA. Then, Ubuntu CD happily booted.

2) "Out of range" error while Ubuntu was booting
So, to install Ubuntu Dapper 6.06, I chose "Live CD & Install" option from the boot menu. However, at some point Ubuntu would disappear and I would just see an "Out of Range" error on the screen.

Fixing this was pretty easy actually. I hit Ctrl+Alt+F1 to go to prompt and then edited the display config
sudo vi /etc/X11/xorg.conf

I removed all entries before"1280x1024" for my nVidia card so that my card would not try to load a resolution that it can not support and saved the file.

Then, I hit "Ctrl+Alt+F7" to go back to the screen where I was seeing "out of range" and hit "Ctrl+Alt+Backspace" to restart Gnome Display Manager (gdm) and voila!

Then, ubuntu user logged in and there was a "Install" icon on the desktop. Using GPart, I first created three partitions on the free space:
1 GB for swap
7 GB for / (formatted with ext3 file system)
25 GB /home (formatted with ext3 file system)

Installation did not took long and in about 20mins, my ubuntu dapper was up and running :)

2006-06-02

sudo issues

While testing linux to linux nxclient with my coworker andy Mei, a rogue line was accidentally pasted to /etc/hosts just before we saved & exit.

It was something like this
192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net192.168.1.1 myubuntu.scorion.net...

That caused some grief! It broke sudo. So everytime I typed `sudo ...` I would get an error:
sudo: unable to lookup via gethostbyname()

I was not able to sudo and therefore I was not able to correct /etc/hosts. So, I rebooted (I could not `sudo reboot` but I could reboot from GUI) to login in Recovery Mode.

As luck would have it, I ran into another issue. I was always getting "keyboard error" while system was booting up but it would be fine after GUI came up. So, I never paid attention to it.

To fix the issue, I connected my keyboard to a different usb port (but this time at the back of my dell pc) and then I was able to login in Recovery Mode as root. Once the offending entry was deleted, everything was back to normal.

2006-06-01

Ubuntu 6.06 LTS released

New Ubuntu Release Available for Desktops and Servers, with Long Term, Global Support

Ubuntu, which has become one of the world's most popular Linux distributions in recent years, launched its latest version on June 1 following months of intense testing. The new release is titled Ubuntu 6.06 LTS (Long Term Support), and has a specific emphasis on the needs of large organisations with both desktop and server versions... Read the rest of their announcement.

BTW, check this nice blog entry called "25 tips to make Ubuntu 6.06 LTS perfect
by Keir Thomas"