Homecoming is here…almost!

Well the day is almost here. Have been waiting for this day for a looong time. Had planned for this more than a month ago. The D-DAY: March 18th, 2008. What’s so special? Homecoming! I will be taking a long (and much deserved I might add) break from work, and will be leaving for my beloved hometown of Mangalore. It’s been more than 3 months since I’ve been to Mangalore, and have been missing my family terribly. I’m really looking forward to meet new Neice Shriya, formerly named Saanvi.

Like I’d said, the planning for this trip was done more than a month ago. The day was chosen as Friday will be Holiday, and I would have to take leave only on Wednesday and Thursday – 2 days, and since I’m entitled to only 2 days of leave(any further and I’d be having Loss in Pay), the selection of day was just right.

I’m really looking forward to go back home –  relax, unwind, no worries about work or thinking anything about premiums, SQL , cursors and what not. Also looking forward to home cooked food ( 😀 \:D/ ) – reallly missed all those sweets, and yeah Fish fry and fish curry. Yumm!  Here’s to couple of days more in Chennai.

Cheers

Chennai Twitter Meetup

Well, Kiruba decided to organise a Chennai Twitter Meetup. As the Wiki states,

It’s really an excuse to have an informal get-together and some fun. A reason for us to get away from keyboards and make new friends in meatspace.

We go dutch. Get your wallet along!

Need directions? Call Kiruba at 98415 97744

Help tweet the news or slap the badge on your blog.

If you’re a twitterer in Chennai and would like to be part of the meetup then head over to the Tweetup Wiki and fill in the details. As much as I’d like to attend the tweetup(my first ever, I might add)  I will be at home in Mangalore and hence won’t be ableto attend tweetup. Hope the guys would tweet about it.

Cheers guys and have a good time

My new baby

No, no, no a baby as in baby kid, but my new cell. Yesterday, I finally changed my nearly a year old Sony Ericsson z530i, which was gifted by my dad to me on my birthday and bought a spankin’ new Sony Ericsson P1i, which is a TouchScreen, Symbian UIQ based. I was all set to buy the Sony Ericsson W910, since initially I thought the P1i would be beyond my budget. On checking the prices, it was within my limit, and I snapped it right-away. A 3.2MP cam, nice 2.4″ screen, with a 320×240 screen resolution, a Walkman media player(without the Walkman branding though, but it does have the Walkman propreitory MegaBass preset), QuickOffice for viewing Word, Excel, Powerpoint files, PDF+, a PDF reader are bundled along with it. Will post a review on it soon, once I’ve used it for a while and can expect more photos on my Flickr photostream on the left sidebar, as well as on my Flickr account. Would’ve loved to post some pictures but ShoZu servers are down and have been unable to activate it for my cell.

American Capsicum Noodles

If you’ve been following me on Twitter, you’d be knowing that most of the time my dinner is generally Rice Thaali + Chicken Curry / Egg Omlette(or all three, if I’m particularly hungry 😀 ) at a nearby Bengali restaurant named Maa Durga Hotel. Well I didn’t want to eat the same thing today, so decided to head over to a South Indian vegetarian restaurant called Balaji Woodlands, just outside the guest house where I stay. I was glancing through the menu deciding on what to order. I *almost* decided to order Naan+Kaaju Paneer Combo, when I saw an item, which somehow I’d missed earlier. What was it?

“American Capsicum Noodles”

I was like WTF are American Capsicum Noodles? Undettered by not even *heard* about it before, I decided to order it. It was a good 15 minute wait before my order was served. So what are American Capsicum Noodles?

Have a look:

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Of Handling Multiple Projects And Failed EVDO Connections

Well it’s been a while since I updated my blog, so here goes. It’s been an event packed(and not-so-packed) past few weeks.

Let start with what happened 2 weeks ago:
The first half of the week was more or less the same. Just the same things that I’d mentioned in the previous post. It’s the latter half of the week where it got interesting. We(as in me and my team mates) received a mail from our onsite implementer stating that he needs all our support for the project as the project was supposed to go live on Feb 14th,and there would be testing at their end(their end meaning US). Hence my PM requested me(and my team mates) to stay back late, just in case any issues popped up, we could solve them.  Well we were rather confident that there would be no issues as such, but still we stayed back. Basically I was doing nothing but surfing, checking my official mailbox for any important mails. We were in office till like 23:30, but my Project Manager dropped me back till the guest house where I stay. He also informed me that he will pick me up the next day a bit late at around 10:30(usually I catch the office bus at 7:45). So day 1 went off without a hitch, and no mails from the implementer either. The next day too, we stayed late(only till 10:30 though) and again everything seemed to go without a hitch. Or did it?
You see the following day(i.e., on day 3, this was a Friday), we received a call from the implementer stating that the project live status has been delayed by a month or so. All of us were like :-?? Till date we still don’t know what happened. Technical issues? Management difference of opinion? No idea till now.
The coming week was like a party week, especially if you’re addicted to the Internet. With the Live status delayed, and no issues to fix, I had no work to do this _entire_ week and was surfing the Net whole day 😀  \:D/
And on Friday, My Project manager informed me that I will we assigned to another project, along with the Current project. So from tomorrow onwards, I will be on 2 projects, with my first project being at higher priority. So let’s hope that goes well too.
Wait I’m not done yet. If you’ve noticed the title, it states “Failed EVDO connections”. Well, as you might be knowing I’ve been trying to obtain a BSNL EVDO connection since the past couple of weeks. Yesterday’s events totally killed my chances of getting that connection. Why? Because it’s official. Chennai doesn’t have EVDO facility(except for the outskirts – Perungudy, Ponnamalai high) neither does BSNL have any immediate plans of deploying it in and around city areas. That just bummed me out totally. Of course for obtaining this little piece of information I had to goto 3 BSNL exchanges, meet atleast 12 people(out of which 10 people gave the same reply when I mentioned EVDO – “EVDO ah? What’s that ?” Hell even the SDE(Sub-Divisional Engineer) had no idea about EVDo. He kept pointing towards the WiFi router and informed me to apply for a telephone line when I told him EVDO is “like wireless Internet connection”. Sigh. 3 hours, no idea how much spent on ricks, roaming about 3 exchanges for this piece of information. Oh I’m so loving it 8-|

On an unrelated note, I’m looking forward to going back home to Mangalore, most likely on March 18th, just in time for my birthday on March 19th. It’s been nearly 2 months since I’ve been there, and I’m eagerly looking forward to it, to have some good ol’ Mangalorean food. Initially I’d planned on surprising my folks about this trip, but I’d just dropped a hint about it to my sis, and that was it, my folks came to know about the trip. Sigh. Oh well. Looking forward to the homecoming.

That’s about it.
Cheers.

Airtel Blocking Access To Unofficial BSNL EVDO site?

Ever since Santosh aka Gigacore started an unofficial site on BSNL EVDO device I’ve been following it closely, seeking for more information and reviews on the device. So it was no surprise that when he launched the BSNL EVDO forums I was the first to register at the forums. Now the userbase has increased and the site has definitely picked up popularity. Has it become so popular as to warrant Airtel from Blocking access to the site?
Since the past couple of days, I’ve been unable to access the forums. Initially I thought it was a problem over at Giga’s end, since he’s been continuously working on the forums, adding new features, I thought maybe something went wrong with the permissions. But earlier today I caught up with Giga and asked him if the site was down, he replied saying no, the regulars are still posting over there. It was like wha. 😮 He suggested I might be having problems at my end, so I tried disconnecting, flushing DNS cache, hell I even hit the IP address directly, and still the site was inaccessible. What’s worse, pointing my browser to the(not the forums) site ends up with a redirection to indiwo.com. I’ve tried IE6, FF2.0.0.12, FF3B2 it’s all the same. Giga suggested me to try access the site via proxy, and lo! The site opens! At the time of writing this, I have 2 tabs open, one with a direct access to the forums which states that site is down, and other via a proxy(boratproxy.com) which has absolutely no problems.
So is Airtel getting scared about BSNL’s EVDO device and trying to block the only one source of reliable information, with respect to the EVDO device(considering that BSNL has next to no information on their site)?

You can guess what my stance is on this.

Overclocking a NVIDIA 8600m GT

Requirements

  • Latest nVidia drivers
  • ATiTool 0.26/RivaTuner 2.06
  • A bit of patience

1. Getting the latest drivers.
Unfortunately, the drivers from nvidia’s site won’t work for a laptop, as they don’t recognize the mobile versions. What you need are drivers from http://www.laptopvideo2go.com Also do note that NOT ALL drivers support OC’ing. The latest that I tried were 171.16.

Grab the latest drivers from here. Also, pick up the modified inf files from the same thread. Now extract the downloaded drivers to a folder(the .exe is a self extracting 7z compressed file). Next, goto the folder where the drivers are extracted. Replace the inf file with the modded inf file you have downloaded. DO NOT run the setup.exe file. You will have to update the drivers manually, using the Have Disk Method.
To do this, goto Control Panel, Double click the System, Click on Hardware Tab and Choose the Device Manager. Expand Display adapters, right click on the 8600m GT and Click on Properties. Click on Driver tab, and Choose update drivers.
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The week that was

Well this week.. well it was just another week gone by. Don’t know when it started… and guess what Saturday’s gone too. Sigh. Working as a software developer means you won’t know how the time flies by, and that’s how the case has been. My routine is now more or less settled. Get up at 6:45 – 7, take a bath, get dressed and hurry off to catch the bus which comes at about 7:50 – 8. Then in office first login using EMuster(the attendance system of 3i), off for breakfast at the canteen, come back review mails, mark important ones(meaning the one related to Issues and bugs in the product) and sit and work on them. And then before you know it, the time’s 6:30. Try to leave by the 6:30pm bus, otherwise stay back till 8:30 for the next cab. A good one hour commute, dinner and then come back and sit on my lappy, reading up Chip & Digit forums, moderating tech2 forums and next thing it’s nearly 12 in the midnight, time to hit the sack. Get up next day, the cycle follows. Sounds monotonous, well yrah it is. That’s how life is. Like they say, best time of your life is when you’re in College. Working can be a drain, physically at times, mostly mentally. You’re just too tired to do anything, although for outsiders it seems like all I do at work is “sit inside an AC cabin and type”. Well those of you think that, you’re not far away from the truth. What you don’t realize is that before I can “type” there’s lots of things I got to worry about. Got to think what will be the implications of that little bit of “typing” in the future. If this isn’t taken care about then my mailbox id will be filled with “this-isn’t-working” mails. Oh well. I did opt for this.
Apart from that, internet access was approved for me at office, so the little bit of time I’m free I can do a bit of surfing. And my Onsite project manager had a look at my blog(which was as a result of me embedding the link in the signature, and my correspondence with our onsite Project Implementor, the onsite PM’s email id was in the CC list). While having coffee, He came upto me and asked me if Indeed It was my blog on Linux, and he was asking how well I know Linux, and on Google Adsense.
And yeah the funniest event that happened was that my Project Manager had send an IP Message(we use IP Messenger for non-official communication) to my teammates and me, stating that he would like to see us in Office on Saturday(that’s Republic Day!!). What was funny about it? Well a teammate of mine sent him a forward via mail, with the mail contents as “Happy Republic Day” =)) =)) We were all having a great laugh with this mail, even my PM was, saying “This wasn’t the reply I was expecting!!”.
Well that was about it for this week. Nothing interesting, all too boring.
What about the next week? That remains to be seen. I’m contemplating taking a long 4 day leave around Mid- March, planning to go back home and be there for my birthday(March may seem a long way off, but yeah we’ve to plan ahead, for the sake of the project and resource allocation). Let’s see how that goes.
Cheers

My Laptop Chronicles: Obtaining(or trying to obtain) a BSNL EVDO connection Part 1

Ever since my guest house owner denied me permission to draw a 2MM cable for TATA Indicom broadband, I’ve been searching for alternatives, so that I can get atleast a decent net connection. For the past month or so, I’ve been trying out AirTel’s EDGE USB modem option, but this net connection sucks harder than the blackhole. Another good alternative is BSNL’s EVDO service, but then the service was launched recently, and BSNL staff are ignorant about the service. Even BSNL’s site has nomention of EVDO service, though the site is apparently up-to-date 8-| (atleast that’s what the site claims)
Thankfully I’ve found a good site on BSNL EVDO, run by Santhosh aka Gigacore. So today being the(Saturdays, that is) only day I’m free, decided to head over to the BSNL exchange at Triplicane, Chennai.
The building was rather small, and I was apprehensive on whether I’ll get the device or not. Entered the building. It was empty, except for one person, who informed me today’s a holiday. Here’s the conversation I had with that guy.

Me: I want to take a EVDO connection. Can I get the connection here?
BSNL guy(BG): EVDO? What’s that? ( 😐 )EVDO is thatt…service.. for Wireless net connection
BG: Oh wireless, Take ADSL connection and we give WiFi router
Me: no, no, not that. EVDO uses CDMA 1x for wireless net access
BG: CDMA yaaa? We(BSNL) dont have CDMA service(!!! :-/ 8-| )
Me: Err…..
BG: Why you want CDMA wireless access, take ADSL, it’s better(hey atleast he’s making a valid point)
Me: I cant take ADSL, the guest house owner won’t let me draw the wire
BG: Oh. I see. CDMA I think we dont have. You goto, #146, Greames Road, to Customer Service centre. They know better. Talk to Mr Srinivas, he’ll know, most others won’t know(atleast he’s being honest!)
Me: Ok. Thanks, I’ll go there(leave the exchange).

Oh well, atleast he pointed me in some direction!! I didn’t goto that place, as today’s a holiday. So that’ll have to be done next week 🙁

I’m a twitter-bug now

Preshit had introduced me to twitter a while ago, but I’d never bothered to check it(don’t ask me why). Seeing twitter updates on Preshit’s blog, I thought I’d give it a try. After trying it out, I’m cursong myself — for not having tried it earlier!

In case you guys are wondering, twitter uses the concept of microblogging, where you send short updates of upto 140 characters(or “tweets”) to Twitter’s website, via SMS, using IM(only Jabber-based protocols like GTalk are supported at the moment). The updates are displayed instantly.
Believe me, you you start using it, you’ll get hooked on to it immediately. And you dont even have to logon to their site, you can update the status using Snitter (which uses Adobe’s AIR technology). FireFox users can also use the TwitterFox add-on. There’s even a KDETwitter plasmoid for those using KDE4.0 Although I’ve been using only for the past couple of days, I admit, I’m a twitterbug now and totally hooked onto twitter–keep updating status via GTalk, Snitter, KDETwitter, and even using my Cell Phone(though not through SMS as of yet), via GPRS. Highly recommend you guys to try it out! You’ll like it!

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