Friday, October 28, 2005

Mars Swings Close to Earth

Mars will come unusually close to the Earth on Saturday; the second time in 60,000 years. The last occurrence was in 2003. "This is the best we're going to see Mars, so we should strike the iron while it is hot," said Kelly Beatty, executive editor of Sky & Telescope magazine. The Red Planet will be 43.1 millions miles from Earth at 11:25pm. So do watch out for MARS!

MSN Book Search takes Google Out

Already, Google is facing tough competition from Yahoo and now Microsoft's MSN has announced that it will release a beta book search service in 2006.
MSN Book Search will index roughly 200,000 documents and publications, according to the company. MSN is vowing to avoid the same legal troubles that Google has run into with its Print Library Project by focusing on literature already considered to be in the public domain.

Let's see how MSN fares against Google in this new battle.

Yahoo doubles price of music subscription

Yahoo Inc. will double the price of its online music subscription service, a change in strategy in the race to knock Apple Computer Inc. off its top spot for online music delivery services.

The company launched a trial version of Yahoo Music Unlimited in May, charging $6.99 per month or a slightly discounted yearly rate of about $60. That service will remain the same price, but will henceforth only allow users to download music to a personal computer with an option to buy tracks for permanent use.

From Nov 1, Yahoo will charge more for downloads to a portable device. The "to go" service will be $11.99 on a monthly basis or about $120 annually.

I don't understand that for beating Apple, Yahoo is increasing the price instead it should decrease the price!

Google Base

Google is going to lauch its new service called Google Base. According to Google, Google Base is Google’s database into which you can add all types of content. We’ll host your content and make it searchable online for free.

This is an early-stage test of a product that enables content owners to easily send their content to Google. QuickBase failed as a consumer offering but has found some use in small workgroups. Of course, since we are living in a post bubble world, some “tagging” goodness makes Google Base cooler, especially for the early adopter crowd.


Google Base

Google is going to lauch its new service called Google Base. According to Google, Google Base is Google’s database into which you can add all types of content. We’ll host your content and make it searchable online for free.

This is an early-stage test of a product that enables content owners to easily send their content to Google. QuickBase failed as a consumer offering but has found some use in small workgroups. Of course, since we are living in a post bubble world, some “tagging” goodness makes Google Base cooler, especially for the early adopter crowd.


Tuesday, October 25, 2005

India Beats Sri Lanka

Sachin, Cricket

India wrap up comprehensive win

India 350 for 6 (Tendulkar 93, Dravid 85*, Pathan 84) beat Sri Lanka 198 (Sangakkara 43, Harbhajan 3-34) by 152 runs

A magical comeback for Sachin Tendulkar, where sparkling strokeplay blended with youthful daring, inspired India to a mammoth total before the spinners taunted the Sri Lankan batsmen and completed a rout in the opening game at Nagpur. In a game that proceeded at a breakneck speed, Irfan Pathan and Rahul Dravid produced crackling 80s to complement Tendulkar's fizz, taking India to an impregnable score and giving them the perfect start to the series.

Chasing 351 was never on the cards but Sangakkara's belligerent riposte created some flutters. Any error in length was dismissed to the advertising hoardings square of the wicket as S Sreesanth, who had a fiery baptism, and Irfan Pathan were dismissed with supple wrists. Flicking with ease and dancing down the track to the medium-pacers, Sangakkara appeared to be having a joyous tennis session, unleashing powerful forehands and rasping cross-court passes.

The mighty strikes by Vaas and Dilhara Lokuhettige towards the end of the day came long after the deck was burnt and Sri Lanka will travel to Mohali knowing that when playing India, the favourite's tag, which they still retain, can easily be wrenched away when one little man is turning on the heat.

Why golf courses have 18 holes

I hope you also wonder the same thing. So some person asked Yahoo about it and here is what he got in reply -

Golf courses didn't always have 18 holes. The number of holes used to vary widely: 11, 22, 24, etc. As with most golf tradition-related questions, the reason why 18 became the standard goes back to St. Andrews of Scotland, the granddaddy of all golf courses.

The original course at St. Andrews (dating back to the 15th century!) consisted of 11 holes along a narrow strip of land next to the sea. Each hole was played twice, for a total of 22. In 1764, two of the holes were judged to be too short, so the course made the switch from 22 to 18 holes (nine holes played two times each).

One legend claims that the number 18 originated as a suggestion from one of the St. Andrews old-timers, who noted that it took exactly 18 shots to finish a fifth of scotch -- a shot per hole.

That's a quite nice answer!

Startup Flock browser

Startup Flock Inc. has released a Firefox-based browser meant to enhance the user experience by incorporating some of the Web's most social features, such as file sharing, RSS (really simple syndication) feeds and Web logging, according to the company's co-founder.

Though Firefox is different because it puts the user experience first and offers more security in comparison to Microsoft's IE, current browsers are still very similar to 10 years ago. IE faced little challenge in the browser market until recently and so has not evolved much in the way of feature innovation.

The preview of the new broswer includes technology for more efficient bookmarking and bookmark-haring through the online service; automated RSS feed sign-up, organization of feeds and much more features.

Download it here

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Polling via SMS

You may believe it or not but technology has changed our way of living. Residents of the Swiss town of Bulach are using SMS to cast votes on a local measure regarding road speed limits. The SMS voting project will be reviewed by the Swiss government which could decide to roll out the capability across the country.

As an security measure, SMS voters also have to supply their birth date. According to the officials, SMS process is more secure than paper balloting. For example, someone could steal the voting material from letter boxes but it would be easier for them to forge a signature and cast the paper ballot then to cast a vote on someone else's behalf via SMS because of the birth date requirement.

Bulach residents will have another chance to vote via SMS in November on a different issue. The Swiss government will examine the results of the trials and may decide to allow for SMS voting around the country. Really, technology has become an integral part of our daily life!

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Latest cricket rankings

England's Andrew Flintoff has moved up to fourth in the Test bowling rankings following the ICC Super Series.
Flintoff took seven wickets for an ICC World XI against Australia to jump two places in the LG ICC ranking list.
Steve Harmison picked up four wickets in the same game but he remains 14th behind new number one Glenn McGrath.


1 J Kallis (SA) 894 pts
2 B Lara (WI) 855
2= R Ponting (Aus) 855
4 R Dravid (Ind) 851
5 V Sehwag (Ind) 825
6 M Hayden (Aus) 803
7 S Chanderpaul (WI) 789
8 M Trescothick (Eng) 778
9 Inzamam-ul-Haq (Pkn) 773
10 A Strauss (Eng) 760


1 G McGrath (Aus) 881
2 S Warne (Aus) 874
3 M Muralitharan (SrL) 871
4 A Flintoff (Eng) 793
5 S Pollock (SA) 787
6 M Ntini (SA) 784
7= C Vaas (SrL) 770
7=Shoaib Akhtar (Pkn) 770
9 M Hoggard (Eng) 762
10 I Pathan (Ind) 756

AOL cuts 4 percent staff

America Online Inc. (AOL) has cut more than 700 employees, or about 4%, from its workforce of nearly 20,000 employees, a company spokesman said. Most of those losing their jobs worked in providing support to AOL members, whose numbers have been decreasing.

On March 31, 2005, AOL had 21.7 million U.S. subscribers in its fee-based service, down 2.3 million from the same period in 2004 and down 4.5 million from the first quarter of 2003.

AOL, a Time Warner Inc. unit, has been reportedly in recent weeks in talks at different times with Google, Microsoft and Yahoo. over these companies' interest to acquire all or part of AOL. Let's see what happens with AOL too

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Exploit code raises Windows worm

Computer code has already been written to take advantage of Windows flaws that were disclosed Tuesday, a sign that a worm attack could be near.

Exploit code exists for four of the 14 vulnerabilities for which Microsoft provided fixes this week. One of the exploits was written for a flaw which Microsoft tagged as "critical". The bug lies in a Windows component for transaction processing called the Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator or MSDTC.

When Microsoft released its patches on Tuesday, experts had already warned that the MSDTC flaw could spawn an attack similar to the Zotob worm that wreaked havoc two months ago. Microsoft urged users of older operating systems, specifically Windows 2000 and Windows XP before Service Pack 2, to prioritize the update that fixes the flaw, which is addressed in security bulletin MS05-051.

Microsoft is aware of Immunity's exploit code, but has not seen any attacks that use the code. Symantec predicts a worm exploiting the MSDTC flaw will surface in the next few days. It is unknown how hard the worm will hit. So please patch your windows now!

Vulnerability in Zone Alarm firewall

Malicious code masquerading as a trusted application could trick a ZoneAlarm firewall into letting it connect to the Internet, security experts have warned.

The issue affects the popular free ZoneAlarm firewall and default installation of version 5.5 and earlier of the paid product. Default installations of the Check Point Integrity Client are also affected, but the paid ZoneAlarm 6.0 products, released in July, are not affected.

Zone Labs has no current plans to update its free firewall product to protect against this issue. Its paid products offer protection against the problem because of additional technology, called an operating system firewall, that is not part of the free network firewall.

Users of the paid ZoneAlarm 5.5 products can protect themselves by enabling the "Advanced Program Control" feature, Zone Labs said.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

TV Screens as Newspapers and Magazines

According to the Guardian (a newspaper) cheap, paper-thin TV screens that can be used in newspapers and magazines have been unveiled by German electronics giant Siemens. The firm says the low production costs could see the magazine shelves in newsagents come alive with moving images vying for the customers' attention as they move along the aisle. The Siemens spokesman said that one square metre of the material costs around £30, and scientists working on the screens said they should be available by 2007.

This will surely revolutionalise our way of reading newspapers but it is also true that it will cost a much higher!

Microsoft releases update for XP Media Center

Microsoft has released an update to Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 that will enhance the way consumers access digital media in their homes.

Windows XP Media Center Edition Update Rollup 2, which is available free to all Windows Media Center customers, allows users to integrate Media Center PCs with the forthcoming Xbox 360 gaming console.

This will enable customers that have both an Xbox 360 and a Media Center PC in their homes to access digital content from their PCs on an Xbox 360 at the same time, making that content more widely available on multiple devices.

More than 4 million Media Center PCs have been sold to date. There are currently for than 75 add-on services to Media Center PCs that have been built by third parties and more are expected before the end of the year by Microsoft.


Friday, October 14, 2005

Google Microsoft War starts

According to an article in The Inquirer, "Google has confirmed that it will launch free spreadsheet and word-processing software online and take on Microsoft in one of its biggest markets. Under the deal, Google will allow web users to access Sun's OpenOffice from a toolbar."

Well if this story is true then we may see a huge revolution in the future which will lead to more competition to Microsoft and we may witness a great cut off on prices of Microsoft products. Imagine if Google Office is realeased then how many of you would buy or use Google Office?

HBO Versus BitTorrent

According to some news sources, HBO is actively poisoning the BitTorrent downloads of the new show - Rome. In addition to an older tactic of offering bogus downloads that never complete, HBO is now obstructing the downloads offered by other people. HBO runs peers that tell the tracker they have all the chunks of the show, but then send garbage data when a downloader requests a chunk. While the bogus peers can be detected, it will take much longer to download shows.

Bad luck to those people who illegally download movies form internet!

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Number magic

Well I was just passing by and my PC was switched on so I thought why not create a post for you all. Well this post is just a piece of information I would like to share with you all.

Did you know that 142857 is a cyclic number i.e. its digits always appear in the same order but will rotate around when multiplied by any number from 1 to 6.

Don't believe me or are you lazy to find a calculator to prove the calculation :-). Well if you are then no problem:-

142857 x 1 = 142857
142857 x 2 = 285714
142857 x 3 = 428571
142857 x 4 = 571428
142857 x 5 = 714285
142857 x 6 = 857142

Honestly, you didn't know this before. Am I right?

Yahoo Lauches Blog Search

Well Google Vs Yahoo continues! After Google launched Blog Search just a couple of weeks ago, Yahoo has also launched its own Blog Search.

Now when you search on Yahoo! News you will see blog results as well as content from thousands of trusted news sites. The experiences and opinions published on blogs make a great addition to the mainstream news people read everyday.

Yahoo! is also integrating Flickr photos and links from My Web into the new-look news search service, which they are calling "a large grassroots media network".

So start your searches now here

Monday, October 10, 2005

The Axe Effect

I have posted too much tech news so it's time for some fun. You all must have seen the advertisement of Axe. What do you sayd after looking at these pics?

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Opera 1 million downloads

Just 48 hours after Opera Software removed the ads and license fee from its popular Web browser, Opera 8.5 has been downloaded by over 1 million people, the company has reported.

Opera's new freeware status puts added pressure on Microsoft's aging Internet Explorer and even Mozilla Firefox, which soared to popularity as a free alternative to IE 6.

Opera says the majority of downloaders were IE users.
Great going Opera! If you are lagging behind then you also download the latest version of Opera and be with the world!
If you can't find a link to download it comment here I"ll give you one!

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Antivirus in Nokia phones

Nokia is planning to arm its Series 60 smart phones with the Symantec Mobile Security antivirus program. The software is designed to ward off attacks that could compromise the extensive data, such as contact databases, that people store on their smart phones, the companies said. The devices typically have many computer-like features, including e-mail and Web browsing, which have made them vulnerable to attacks.

Cell phone virus outbreaks are a small but emerging threat, security experts have said.
Nokia and Symantec said their agreement follows two years of joint work to develop mobile security technology. Earlier this year, software maker Kaspersky Lab released its own mobile antivirus software.

Upcoming tech is under great security breach crisis.

Bug in Symantec antivirus

A buffer overflow flaw in the Symantec AntiVirus Scan Engine could let remote attackers run code on vulnerable machines. The problem affects various versions of the engine, which is the part of the security software that actually scans for threats. Security patches are available to correct the problem, which Symantec rates "high" on its risk impact scale.

"Symantec strongly recommends all customers immediately apply the latest updates for their supported product versions to protect against these types of threats," the company said in its alert. No attacks that use the flaw have been reported, Symantec said.

Symantec advises people to check their installation. The administrative interface should be accessible only via a secure segment of the network and should never be open outside a company's network, Symantec said. So please be cautious!

Windows XP SP3

While Microsoft has still will not confirmed that there will be a third service pack for its Windows XP OS, a preview version of the software update has been made available on the Web. An "unofficial" preview pack of Windows XP service pack 3 (SP3) is available at The Hotfix.

Ethan Allen, the creator and administrator of The Hotfix, said Wednesday he put together the preview pack from software updates he received from an internal Microsoft source that are expected to be released in SP3.

Some of those updates include Windows log-on improvements and features that fix current problems with connecting Windows XP computers to various networks, according to the SP3 forum on the site, which can be found here

A Microsoft spokesman said that Microsoft still has not decided whether or not to release SP3 for Windows XP. At this point, the Windows servicing team is reviewing the feedback on Windows XP SP2 and is still evaluating timing and alternatives for the next Windows XP servicing release.

Top 100 products

PC World has published its top 100 best products of 2005. Some programs really deserved getting a high rank like G Mail and Firefox while some have really got a low rank and I think that they must get a high rank. So here is the list at a glance:-

Firefox(1), GMail(2) (Knew it!), OSX 10.4(3), Alienware Aurora 5500(6), Skype(8), PalmOne Treo 650(10), Google(16)(Wow! Is Google a product?), PSP(19), GeForce6600GT(20), Ubuntu(26), iTunes(34), Half-Life 2(38), Wikipedia(60), ThinkPad X41(67), Mac Mini(75), Acronis True Image(83), Opera(88). Surprisingly, there is only a model of IPod in the list and that too is IPod Photo at 78 rank. Bad luck Apple.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Free 30 GB E-mail

Well now what is this? A servic that offers 30 GB E-Mail inbox for free. We are going to enter into a fight for giving the most GBs of E-Mail.

Well if you passinate about getting so much space for your E-Mail you can definately try out the service here. 30 Gigs dot com is offering 30 GB Free E-Mail service which is 15 TIMES MORE than GOOGLE'S.15 TIMES MORE than GOOGLE'S.

But be aware that according to Whois this domain has been registered only on 21st September and its pretty new so be cautious while registering and using it. I wonder how robust this service is going to be!

Yahoo Blog Search

Google Vs Yahoo this is what we are seeing and this is what being expected.
As you all know that Google has launched its blog search just 2 weeks back and now accoring to Business Week we may soon see a Yahoo Blog Search.

WOW! That's good. In this battle of search engines, atleast the Blog readers like you and Bloggers like will get the most benefit. Keep checking my blog until I post more about this exciting news.

Yahoo Site Explorer

Are you also an owner of a site or a blog? If yes, then Yahoo has made a great utility just for you. Your site/blog must be listed in Yahoo so using Yahoo Search Blog you can all pages within a domain that have been indexed by Yahoo so far.

This helps you to know whether Yahoo has indexed your latest Blog post or not. For website owners, it will let you see whether the new page you uploaded has been indexed by Yahoo.

I think this tool will prove much useful to Bloggers like me! So how this tool helps you please do tell me by commenting.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Free Adobe Trial DVD

Are you a resident of Canada, US, Australia or New Zealand ? If yes then this offer is just for you.

Adobe is sending a free Creative Suite 2 DVD containing 30-day trial versions of Photoshop CS2, InDesign CS2, Illustrator CS2, GoLive CS2 and Adobe Acrobat Pro.

U.S. / Canada residents go here and get your DVD now! Australia / New Zealand residents go here and enjoy

And please do not forget to leave your valuable comment!


Hacker feedback on IE7

Microsoft showed off the preliminary work it has done on the second beta version of its popular Internet Explorer, version 7 in the Box Security Conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and came away with some good feedback.

Some hackers gave Microsoft high marks for showing off some new security features on the Web browser and seeking their views, adding they would have liked to hear more technical detail on new features in IE7 Beta 2. But their impression was the presenters appeared almost apologetic.

The Beta 2 version of IE7, currently under construction at Microsoft, will likely be ready by the end of the year.

One new feature on the Web browser is it runs in higher security "Protected Mode" by default. In protected mode, all downloads and other packages are automatically dropped in the "temporary Internet files" folder, so malware cannot be deposited on the hard disk.

For businesses, Microsoft added a "Compatibility Mode" that works when a person is using the company's intranet and allows them to drop files wherever they want to on their PCs.

Let us see how the new IE will fare among Firefox and Opera, the toughest competitors Microsoft IE has to face.