Archive for the TechNical Category

Google Struggles to give away $10M

Posted in TechNical on June 30, 2010 by Jagtheesh

On its tenth anniversary in 2008, Google promised $10 million to the best five ideas for using technology to improve the world, through Project 10×100 — a neat play on words (10 to the 100th power expresses the number “googol,” which is a one followed by one hundred zeroes).

Google’s intentions were good, of course — $10 million spent the right way could have a real impact on these problems, which range from building better banking tools to a real-time, user-reported news service.

However, the company’s follow-through leaves much to be desired. Google announced this cash prize contest in September 2008 and closed public voting on 16 finalists chosen from over 150,000 ideas in October 2009. Over eight months later, the company has yet to announce the winners.

Meanwhile, e-mails sent to Project 10 to the 100th’s Gmail account are bouncing, indicating that Google has deleted the address. And the company’s press department has yet to respond to our inquiries about the project.

“We’ll announce the winning big ideas in the near future,” reads a notice on the project’s website, which lists “©2009 Google” at the bottom. According to Daniel Meyerowitz, who says his idea for mapping ongoing genocides and providing early warning of new ones is a finalist in the competition, Google has not said a peep about this competition in nine months — despite having apologized for delays as early as March 2009.

“While genocide and other pressing problems relentlessly advance, it would seem that Project 10^100 does not,” Meyerowitz told Wired.com. “Years behind schedule. Nine months since announcing their most recent delay. How hard can it be to give away ten million bucks? Harder than Google can handle, apparently.”

Google, which reported revenue of $6.77 billion for the first quarter of this year, could practically consider $10 million to be a rounding error, so money isn’t the problem. And the company already did the hard work of combining the overt 150,000 submitted ideas, many of which were duplicates or complementary, into 16 “theme” ideas, on which the public has already voted.

Assuming the project is still ongoing, Google will select an organization already involved with the issue to receive a share of the cash with the goal of solving the problem. So all that remains for the company to do at this point is to announce the five winning ideas and the organizations that will receive the money to implement them.

“An inspirational effort which began in the best Google tradition seems to be mired in the worst Google lapses,” said Meyerowitz, who brought this situation to our attention. “When can we expect the final projects to be funded? Or how about just a blog update?”

Google’s not talking — not yet, anyway. But apparently, it’s the process of choosing the right organizations to address these issues that threatens to turn Google’s 10th birthday celebration into a 12th birthday surprise.

Funny Computer-related signs

Posted in TechNical on March 29, 2010 by Jagtheesh

Windows 7 Ultimate Installation…

Posted in TechNical on October 29, 2009 by Jagtheesh

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Sony introduces PS3 Slim, downs PS3 Price to $300

Posted in TechNical on August 20, 2009 by Jagtheesh

playstation_3_slim_mockup

Sony reveals the secret of its new PS3 price cut as well as confirmation of a trimmer, slimmer iteration of the PS3 after over a year’s worth of gossip and false leads and photo-forgeries. The PS3 slim looks, as you’d expect, kind of like a diet-PS3, except for the part where it’s still full-featured only priced $100 less. Make that 33 percent smaller, 36 percent lighter, roughly as tall, but thinner, with a matte finish all around.

It certainly looks nifty, that much thinner, speaking as a guy who had to lug two Xbox 360s and PS3s and a Wii overseas in carry-on luggage. Never mind the fact that the original PS3 is just about the ugliest-angled console to come along in decades. But I digress.

The current 80GB PS3 had been selling for $400, though a few retailers slashed prices in recent days and fueled speculation a price drop was imminent. It’s not clear whether the PS3 slim actually replaces the existing model or not, but if you don’t care about aesthetics, the price of the PS3 just dropped across the board, meaning that as of tomorrow, you can buy an existing PS3 anywhere in the US for $300 (or depending on your international locale, 300 euros or 29980 yen).

Apple Tablet Prototype is Real, Nov. Launch Expected, says Report

Posted in TechNical on August 8, 2009 by Jagtheesh

The Apple tablet is real, and someone claims they’ve actually seen the thing. Well, so goes the latest rumor anyway. After months of speculation, innuendo and good ol’ wishful thinking, someone finally found an anonymous source not willing to go on the record who claims to have first-hand knowledge of the storied Apple tablet. This morning’s rumor comes from the anonymous “A. Veteran Analyst,” who says they’ve actually held a prototype for Apple’s next wonder device in their own hands, according to Barron’s.

apple_tablet

Mr. Analyst says Apple is going to have a final design ready in the next six weeks, and the device would then be announced in September for a November launch. The Apple tablet may also break your bank, costing you a whopping $699 to $799. But for those big bucks you’d get a device that would be able to, among other things, play high-definition video. While other features might be nice, it sounds like the Apple tablet’s video capability is the feature to beat. The anonymous source says the device’s video quality “is better than the average movie experience.

“So the 10-inch Apple tablet is a better movie experience than staring at a giant screen with surround sound or watching a DVD at home? That must be some mythical device.

Computer Industry Scared Stiff

While Apple is busy creating its next super device to replace the multiplex, everyone else in the computer industry is reportedly so nervous about the Apple tablet they’re waiting to see what the product looks like before imitating or ripping it off. That’s a smart move considering how one guy was left with a warehouse full of iPhony Nanos after this year’s MacWorld Expo. By the way, if you’re looking for a fully non-functioning mini-iPhone drop me a line.

Apple Tablet: the Rumor That Keeps on Giving

Apple tablet mania has been heating up in recent weeks. Earlier this month, another rumor came out saying theApple tablet might be available through Verizon with a multiyear service contract. An arrangement like that would subsidize the heavy cost of the device, and with a price of almost $800 it’s not hard to see why that would make sense.

Late last week, there was also a rumor the Apple tablet would launch with a secret software project codenamed Cocktail. The software is rumored to be a development in conjunction with the major music labels, and would be “a new type of interactive album, which will combine photos, lyrics sheets, video clips, and liner notes, all gathered into an interactive booklet.”

That sounds like an interesting concept, but software is one of the big questions hanging over the Apple tablet. As Barron’s writer Tiernan Ray says, no one knows if this device will be attached to the iPhone App Store or will have a software model closer to Apple’s MacBook line. As I’ve said before, I think tying a tablet to the App Store could be a mistake since it would virtually guarantee a less-functional device. But we may have to wait until next month’s supposed announcement before we’ll know for sure how this device will work.

Assuming of course, that this yet-to-be-proven device exists. As PC World’s Michael Scalisi pointed out last week, the rumored Apple tablet, despite all they hype,could end up being a flop given the poor track record of past tablet devices. So would Apple risk its iPhone mojo on an unproven device that nobody may want, or are we truly at the point where the world will just go nuts for anything Apple comes out with? If the rumors are correct, we may know the answer to that question very soon. [Article from PCWorld].

How to insert Flash into Powerpoint 2007

Posted in TechNical on March 4, 2009 by Jagtheesh

Ensure the Flash Player is installed on your computer, and then please follow the stejps below:
1. Click Microsoft Office Button on the top left corner > click “PowerPoint Options” at the bottom of the panel > go to the “PowerPoint Options” window > click “Popular” on the left column > select “Show Developer tab in the Ribbon” on the right column > click “OK” at the bottom

  
2. On the “Developer” tab > go to “Controls” group > Click the icon of hammer and nail for “More Controls” > go to the “More Controls” window

  
3. On the “More Controls” window > select “Shockwave Flash Object” in the list > click “OK” at the bottom > use your pointer to drag on the slide to draw and resize the control

  
4. Right click the control you draw > click “Properties” in the right-click menu > go to the “Properties” window

 
5. On the alphabetic tab > click the “Movie” property > type the full drive path in the value column (the blank cell next to Movie), including the file name (e.g. C\:a.swf) or URL (e.g. http://www.a.com/b.swf)

  

6. To make the Flash paly automatically when the slide is displayed, set the “Playing” property to “True“; To embed the Flash into PowerPoint, set “EmbedMovie” property to “True”

 
7. Finally close the “Properties” window and save your presentation.

 
On the View tab, in the Presentation Views group, you can click Slide Show or press F5 to preview your presentation.

Back Up Your Registry

Posted in TechNical on March 3, 2009 by Jagtheesh

       Backing up the Windows Registry isn’t as important as backing up your data (including photos, music, and documents), but it’s still a good idea. If Windows starts acting seriously weird, restoring the Registry to a point when it was healthy could save you a lot of grief.

Windows provides two methods for backing up your Registry. I’ll discuss both of them, then tell you of a better, third-party yet free solution.

System Restore: Windows’ built-in, semi-automated system backup tool protects a lot of important files in addition to the Registry. Windows is supposed to create a restore point (translation: backup) every day or so automatically, but don’t trust that to happen. To create your own restore point in XP, select Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, System Restore. SelectCreate a restore point, click Next and follow the wizard. In Vista, click Start, right-click Computer and selectProperties. Click the System protection link, then theCreate button.

In either Windows version, you can restore by selectingStart, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, System Restore and following the prompts.

And hope it works.

Because no single restore point contains a complete backup, one corrupted or missing restore point can make all the ones that follow it unusable. What’s more, Windows decides which points to keep and which to throw away, so it could throw out the one you use.

Regedit: Yes, you can back up the Registry using Windows’ Registry editor. To launch the editor, select

Start, Run (just Start in Vista), type regedit, and press ENTER. To make a backup, select File, Export. For the ‘Export range,’ select All, and otherwise do what you do in this sort of dialog box.

This creates a .reg file, and all you need do to restore it is double-click it and confirm that you want to change the Registry.

But this one also has problems. Restoring the entire Registry from this backup doesn’t always work. And even when it does, it will not delete new keys created since you made the backup.

And now, the best solution:

ERUNT: A few months ago I recommended the Emergency Recovery Utility NT for XP users, but said it didn’t work in Vista. I was wrong. This simple, free, and highly dependable Registry backup program gives off error messages and refuses to work properly in Vista–unless you know the trick.

And here’s the trick: Don’t launch ERUNT by simply double-clicking the shortcut. Right-click the shortcut and select Run as administrator. That’s it.

Well, there is one limitation. You can’t automate ERUNT to run automatically with every boot from inside Vista, but that’s excessive, anyway. Backing up the Registry before and after installing new software or a major upgrade is sufficient.

Once up, ERUNT is extremely simple–in Vista or XP. Each ERUNT backup consists of a folder containing several files. One of them is ERDNT.EXE, the restore program.

Finally, one quick note about restoring from any of these backups. If a restore fails, reboot into safe mode and try again. There’s a better chance the restore will work that way–although no guarantee.