Wednesday, June 30

Gmail Tools

Found on Nilesh's Blog

G-Mailto: Sets Gmail as your default mail program in Windows. So when you click on a mailto:// url, your favourite web browser will open up a page with Gmail's Compose window. Pretty nifty.

GTray: Windows system tray notifier for new Gmail mail.

GmailCompose: A Mozilla Firefox extension to open the Gmail compose window with the click of a button.

Gmail Loader: Import your existing mail into Gmail!

Other supporting apps to help move to Gmail.

Links :

* POP Goes the Gmail Retrieve Gmail using POP in Outlook Express

Hiware Bazaar : Going green at the grassroots - and blossoming

Where there is will, theirs a way. Yesterday via CNBC came through this interesting story about Hiware Bazaar, a small village in Maharashtra which is like a Oasis in Dought Ridden Maharashtra. The Sarpanch and the Panchayat have a ambitious plan for 2005 that , nobody in the village should be below the poverty line and without a piece of land. They also ensure that villagers have access to loans and ensure that loan is used effeciently for the right purpose. Hiware bazaar has some wonderful water reservation plans like banning of certain crops, banning on digging borewells and the beauty is that villagers and farmers do understand this restrictions and now also witness & party to the benefits. By this example we can say that "the probelm is not that people don't have the solutions, the problem is that people don't get the problems right ?." Once you get the problem right you have easy solutions and big results.

The achievements of Hiware Bazaar and others are highlighted in the Planning Commission of India report : WATER The Water Women: A Case Study of Tank Restoration. [ The report is in PDF : To download , Right click the link and choose "Save Target As".]

Adarsh Gaon

In 1993, three years after a serious village led community development process was underway, Hiware Bazaar was recognized by the Government of Maharashtra as an ‘Adarsh Gaon’ (ideal village). Under a government program that sought to identify the most promising locations of village development in each district, the Hiware Bazaar story was highlighted to the government machinery and to the people at large. In many ways this was because it quickly learnt from the experiences of village development from itsmore famous neighbor of the last decade, Ralegao Siddhi.. By adopting the four tenets of Anna Hazare's work, Charabandhi (ban on grazing), Nashabandhi (ban on alcohol) Nassbandhi (family planning) and Katbandhi (ban on deforestation), it appealed to planners and politicians alike.

The results of this recognition, besides having monetary benefits for various developments were enormous. Access to government and bureaucratic machinery was greatly increased as a consequence of this. As a result, villageleaders now report few difficulties while trying to access the bureaucratic structure of the government. Most officials were extremely cooperative and eager to enhance the successes of their efforts.

Over the years, therefore, the village of Hiware Bazaar has reportedly used the infrastructure and benefit of many government and quasi government agencies for village development works. These are:

1. Yashwant Krishi Panlot Sanstha- NGO headed by the sarpanch, (recipient of Adarsh Gav Yojna) funded nalla bunding, aforestations, storage bandharas, and boulder/ earthen structures

2. Forest Department- Van-tale, aforestation

3. Agriculture department- Bunding

4. Minor Irrigation dept- Percolation tanks

5. Rural Sanitation programme- Construction of toilets

6. ?- Subsidies for Biogas, solar energy

7. MH Govt.– watershed training institute

8. ICAR and Mahatma Phule Agricultural University- increasing dry crop yields under Jawahar research scheme

Related Links :

* Going green at the grassroots - and blossoming

Telecom Infrastructure sharing between SAARC countries

A PIB Report :
India has called for the need to optimise the use of telecom infrastructure for intra-regional communication with a view to bring down the costs of telecom services. This was stated by the Union Minister of Communication and Information Technology Shri Dayanidhi Maran, while addressing the 2nd SAARC Communication Ministers Conference at Islamabad, Pakistan today. Shri Maran said that “Using each others infrastructure for intra-regional communication can prove to be economically advantageous, but with the added benefit of the resources circulating within the region, besides lower tariffs to the consumer”. For more effective regional co-operation , Sh Maran stated that it would also be necessary to digitalise inter-country links within the region in a time bound manner. “On our part, we have digitalised all our telephone exchanges” he added.

Related Links :

* Two more NIXI nodes to come up

Tuesday, June 29

Hotmail trying to be Hot ?

After Rediffmail and Yahoo Mail now HoTMaiL joins [BBC] the Gmail in mail box storage competition.
- Gmail - 1GB storage, 10MB attachments

- Hotmail Plus - $19.95 per year, 2GB storage, 20MB attachments

- Hotmail free - 250MB storage, 10MB attachments

- Yahoo Mail Plus - £11.99, 2GB storage, 10MB attachments

- Yahoo Free - 100MB of storage, 10MB attachments

- Lycos UK Personal - £41.88 per year, 1GB storage, 50MB attachments

- Lycos UK - free, 10MB storage

- Spymac - free, 1GB storage

- Ask Jeeves - free, 250MB storage

- Ask Jeeves Excite Gold - $19.99 per year, 2GB storage

- Shiremail - £42 per year, 1GB storage

Related Links :

* Google's Gmail could be blocked

When is the right time to start your own business?

Mahesh Murthy gives some pointers on When is the right time to start your own business? . In the given extract he talks about "Education" .
Education seems to make no difference whatsoever to your likelihood of success as an entrepreneur. As an employee maybe, but not as a business owner. (A personal observation: I never bothered getting a degree, and I don't think it's hurt me very much so far.)

The bigger point, though, is what will make the business you intend to start successful. Again, I really believe the key to succeeding is to understand the market you will be operating in. See what the buyers need and what current sellers offer - and figure out if there's a gap where you can offer something better, and in a way that others can't match soon enough.

This is what it takes. To do this requires no particular education - and no set years of experience. If there are so many successful Internet entrepreneurs around the world barely out of their teens, it's because they had the relevant experience of being online early in life - and they figured out the problems and a solution for their markets better than anybody else twice their age. They may be young - but they had the relevant experience.

That's why you rarely see teenaged chemical industry successes, or 20-year-old biotech billionaires. You need the 'right' experience and insights from it - not just years of work at some unconnected place.

That hopefully answers the other question many of you put to me - "Mahesh, I'm joining a bank and want to work for a few years, and then start an organic vegetable operation". Sorry, bossman, no can do. That is not relevant to your intended line of business. You're better off going to the mandi now.

Related Links :

* Forbes Magazine's List of the World's Richest People

* Noted Individuals - High School and Elementary School Dropouts

* ELLISON TO GRADS: DIPLOMAS ARE FOR LOSERS / Oracle CEO Urges Students to Drop out, Start up (Satire)

* Famous Entrepreneurs

Monday, June 28

Technology as a Threat to Job

Harvey Cohen, president of Strategy Analytics believes that Technology is the biggest threat to jobs.Technology that adds intelligence to computers poses a far more serious threat to jobs than low-wage countries. According to him, "The thing about technology is that it has a tendency to creep up on you".
Computers also handle many customer-service tasks today, such as directing callers to service reps or scanning customers' email and giving back automated responses. As computer intelligence improves, technology will handle more tasks and replace more people.

And the technology will get better. For example, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the research arm for the US military, is leading a project to develop a vehicle that can navigate a desert for at least 15 kilometres without a driver. Prototypes have gone as far as 11km, successfully moving around cactuses, boulders and other obstacles.

"I view this in the same way as the first flight of the Wright brothers," Cohen said.

Such advancements eventually find their way into businesses, which means someday fewer jobs driving forklifts and delivery trucks.

"The level of embedded intelligence in our electronic products and services is at a real turning point where we see this accelerating," Cohen said.

Mobile Makes Sperm Immobile

Ouch ! Save sperm throw your mobile :
Mirror UK : MERELY carrying a mobile phone can cut a man's sperm count by nearly 30 per cent, new research suggests.Scientists claim radiation from a switched-on phone, even if not in use, slashes the number of sperm per millilitre by almost 24 million.

A victim raped twice : Morons for the protection of Human Rights of a Rapist:

My response to Amit's blog entry : Dhananjay's punishment got a Stay order . Mr. President is considering his mercy plea. But Why ?

Amit, I completely agree with you in some cases i think capital punishment must be there. If somebody kills another human, he/she by default looses the right to live. And all those preachers of human rights, can they take the responsibility to change that person, or commit that the same person will not do the same crime again.

Everybody comes up with Solutions in India, but all of them have not understood the problem right.

The people who cannot get the work done from their local municipality , hue and cry about the human rights, It makes me bang my head on the wall.

First think about the human right about the child labour working in your house, that minor girl who is available in Rs.150 in the read light area of your city. And most importantly think about the human rights of that victim who got raped and about the human rights of the family who has suffered a lost.

Please use "Reference to Context", for god sakes don't debate about the f***** human rights of a rapist. Don't talk about this bullshit of humans and civilization. Do you think carrying mobiles , flying spaceships, and connecting on the internet makes us civilized. Animals are the first class species on this earth who beautify this planet, humans are the worst thing on the planet. If you don't believe me, just close your eyes and see this planet without humans, i will call that vision as a very ideal and good dream.

Dudes.... open your eyes and see others and yourself how human we are and how civilized we are. For Human rights must apply to humans, and they do not exist in ideal form anywhere on this planet. As science says "Survival of the fittest", the people who are not fit in terms of capabilities in harming others, need a protection of capital punishment.

Saturday, June 26

The Green Oscars

Indians have won two of the four Ashden Awards 2004, considered as Green Oscars, and a cash of 30,000 pounds each for their inspirational and innovative renewable energy projects.

* Goverdhan Rathore, founder of the Prakratik Society in Ranthambhore in Rajasthan, bagged the Climate Care Award and the cash prize for providing villages around the Ranthambhore Tiger reserve with a cleaner, greener alternative to firewood for cooking, in the form of bio-gas.

* Hemant Lamba and his team at the international township of Auroville in Pondicherry succeeded in delivering affordable and reliable renewable energy products and services (in the form of solar panels) in 12 states, benefiting 80,000 people.

* Binu Parthan of IT Power received a runners-up prize of 7,500 pounds for designing a pioneering smoke-free, fuel-efficient stove that cuts the wood requirement by 70 percent.

Background on Ashden Awards:
The Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy were created in 2001 by the Ashden Trust, one of the Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts. For the first two years, the awards were presented in association with the Whitley Awards for Conservation. The success of the renewable energy awards encouraged the Ashden Trust to set up an independent scheme and to increase the number of awards, thanks to contributions from four other Sainsbury Family Charitable Trusts.

Due to their success, the awards have expanded in number and geographical coverage. This is the second year to include projects in the UK, recognising that industrialised countries need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy 2003 are presented in association with Green Futures, the UK's leading magazine on environmental solutions and sustainable futures, and its parent organisation, Forum for the Future. Forum for the Future was founded in 1996 by three of the UK's leading advocates of sustainable development - Jonathon Porritt, Sara Parkin and Paul Ekins. The charity aims to accelerate the building of a sustainable way of life, taking a positive, solutions-oriented approach.

* Ashden Awards International Finalists 2004

* Picture Gallery of Finalist

Cisco Acquire Procket

Cisco Systems, Inc the worlds largest network equipment manufacturer will buy the intellectual property i.e a majority of the engineering team and select assets from Procket Network for $89 million. Prokect was co-founded in March 1999 by Sharad Mehrotra, William Lynch and Tony Li, Procket markets concurrent services routers and has expertise in silicon and software development. Mehrotra, the chairman emeritus of Procket, is no longer active with the company. Procket's has a technology similar to Cisco's new high-end router, which was unveiled in May and took four years and $500 million to develop. It is intended for large telecommunications carriers.

* Cisco Systems to Purchase Intellectual Property, Engineering Teams and Select Assets from Procket Networks [ Cisco News Release ]

Spider-Man in India via Slashdot

Follow this post on Slasdot regarding the debute of Indianized version of Spiderman in India:
Lord Omlette writes "I'm really surprised no one else has mentioned this, but Spider-Man is getting redone in India! As an Indian-American, I'm quite excited. (Let's get it out of the way: even our comic book heroes are being outsourced, wtf!) The manga version of Star Wars was pretty good, but off the top of my head I can't think of any other comic books that were redone for a completely different culture. Anyone?"


* Spiderman Goes Desi [TOI]

Friday, June 25

Build Operate Transfer and join the Crorepati-Club

In the light of latest ( Avnish Bajaj and Suvir Sujan), takeover bid from , Economic Times Reports:
Build a world-class organisation, turn it around into a profitable venture and then sell it off for a bounty’-- this seems to be the mantra for becoming a millionaire these days as more and more CEOs are selling-off their startups and joining the ‘crorepati-club’ . Some of the daring CEOs which materialised the BOT ( Build Operate Transfer ) philosophy to sell of their ventures are:

* Sanjeev Agarwal - Daksh E-Services now owned by IBM

* Raman Roy - Spectramind now owned Wipro Spectramind

* Anant Koppar - Kshema Technologies now owned by Mphasis BFL

* Puneet Dalmia and Alok Mittal -
now owned by Monster

* Sabeer Bhatia -
now owned by Microsoft

Bob Bemer is No More

Bob Bemer, a computer pioneer who published warnings of the Y2K problem in the early 1970s and helped invent a widely used coding system, has died after a battle with cancer. He was 84
A short list includes:

* helped create COBOL (as in "Grandfather of" )

* coined the words COBOL and CODASYL

* invented the ESCape sequence

* created the PICTURE clause

* helped create and standardize the ASCII character set (as in "Father of")

* put the backslash into the ASCII set

* helped create the 8-bit per byte standard"

Thursday, June 24

A letter to Western Media Representatives

(Appologies for typos, spelling and grammatical mistakes - forgot to include in original email)
Dear Mr. Morales,

I was kind of disturbed by seeing your news article published in
Bloomberg today : India Kills 5 Kashmir Rebels; 23 People Hurt in
Blast, AFP Says .

It seems that either I am ingorant about politics and my country or
the western media doesn't have the willigness or honesty to understand
the difference between "Rebel", "Terrorist" or "Militant". I am in no
support and bias towards India and Pakistant , I am hopless about both
their politics and politicians.

I know you don't represent the entire western media but atleast I can
know your personal thoughts on this and your reply may also eliminate
certain misconceptions in my mind (if any) and I would get my facts

I would like to ask you on the behalf of a common Indian Citizens,
relatives of the people who died in Kashmir & rest of India and
families of martyr soldiers . I will be very obliged to know what
makes you say these peoples "Islamic Rebels", is India - Pakistan
issue a Hindu - Muslim issue, I think by attaching this tag of
"Islamic (Rebels) you are hurting Muslims in India also. Please let us
know why don't you use the term "Terrorits" .

If according to you the definition of "Rebel" is correct then, do
rebels kill people in another states and innocent common citizens who
are in no-way attached to Kashmir issue ? . For Example : Mumbai Bomb
Blast and Gujarat Temple Attack.

Also if they are truly rebels then why are Indian Politicians remain
untouched and the body count of innocent people increases day-by-day.
Who are they rebelling against normal people of India (for your
information Hindus & Muslims both) or Goverment of India.

Again, I would be very obliged to get the reply from you, or if you
think I am a Hindu fundamentalist and a "Rebel" then please do
understand that I do not kill people and I know that your mail
software has a "Delete" button.

Thanks & Regards,

cc : Editor responsible for this story: Peter Torday at

PS : For your easy reference I have also copy - pasted the definition
of Rebels & Terrorist from

re bel ( P ) Pronunciation Key (r-bl)
intr.v. re belled, re bel ling, re bels
To refuse allegiance to and oppose by force an established government
or ruling authority.
To resist or defy an authority or a generally accepted convention.
To feel or express strong unwillingness or repugnance: She rebelled at
the unwelcome suggestion.

ter ror ist ( P ) Pronunciation Key (trr-st)
One that engages in acts or an act of terrorism.

ter ror ism ( P ) Pronunciation Key (tr-rzm)
The unlawful use or threatened use of force or violence by a person or
an organized group against people or property with the intention of
intimidating or coercing societies or governments, often for
ideological or political reasons.

Trai Releases Consultation Paper On Access Deficit Review

TRAI Releases Consultation Paper on Review of Access Deficit Charges :
TRAI had notified an Interconnection Usage Charge (IUC) and an Access Deficit Charge (ADC) regime in January, 2003 which was subsequently reviewed and a revised scheme for IUC and ADC was notified on 29th October, 2003. The Authority had stated in its subsequent notification, inter alia, that it would be reviewing the ADC regime annually, it would consider phasing out ADC funding to BSOs other than BSNL after next review, and consider moving to a revenue share regime to fund the ADC, which should gradually decline and be phased out within three to five years. The Authority has released a Consultation Paper today to begin the consultation process for such a review.

The paper first recalls some of the key points that the Authority had made in its notification of 29th October, 2003 regarding the evolution of the ADC regime over time, and its review for adopting a revised regime based on revenue share. The paper then notes a number of difficulties that have been reported regarding reconciliation of data (and hence related payments) as well as certain incentives for call bypass/grey market calls under the present ADC regime. The Authority has reached a conclusion that these matters would be suitably addressed under a regime based on revenue share. In this context, the Authority has also raised the issue of the ADC being made available only to BSNL, the incumbent which has a large presence in the country, including in rural and remote areas.

The paper argues that if the ADC regime is based on revenue share, then the extent of data requirement for the review is much lower than that required for an ADC regime based on varying charges per minute. Thus, based on reasonable assumptions on growth of subscriber base for fixed and mobile, capital investment and average revenues per user (including revenues from access and long distance services), it would be possible to calculate the required percentage revenue share that would fund the ADC. The paper has taken a range for the average monthly rental for BSNL’s fixed service, and thus has reached a range for the proposed ADC revenue share. One estimate of monthly rental is Rs. 156, which was the amount, based on actual data for 2002-2003, considered for the IUC Regulation of 29th October 2003. Subsequent to this some revisions in the monthly rentals have taken place in a number of tariff schemes, as a result of which the average monthly rental would have increased. An upper limit of Rs. 200 has been taken for monthly rental, in the paper on ADC review. This amount was used in the first IUC Regulation which was notified on 24th January, 2003, based on the standard tariff packages in place. Further, the Authority has now given tariff forbearance (except for rural areas). Thus, the range for monthly rental considered for the ADC review is Rs. 156 to Rs. 200.

The range for the proposed ADC revenue share based on the calculations mentioned in the paper is 2.2% (for monthly rental of Rs. 200) and 5.3% (for monthly rental of Rs. 156) of AGR(Adjusted Gross Revenue).

The Authority invites responses from the stakeholders by 15th July, 2004. For more detail, please see the TRAI website at “”.

Links :

* Consultation Paper On Access Deficit Review [HTML]
[PDF] Right Click and choose "Save As".

India’s IT services revenue up 29% in 2003: Gartner

Navhind Times Reports :

India-based IT services vendors saw 29 per cent increase in revenues, but continued to be a marginal player in the global market which grew 6.2 per cent to $ 569 billion in 2003, research firm Gartner has said.

Indian-based vendors represented a small segment of the worldwide market, with 1.4 per cent of total revenues. However, their revenues collectively increased 29 per cent over 2002, according to preliminary results from Gartner.

US-based vendors continued to lead the worldwide IT services market, attracting 59 per cent of the total spending. IBM remained the largest competitor, with revenue rising 6.2 per cent to $ 42.6 billion and its market share unchanged at 7.5 per cent.

Links :
* After IT, India set for retail boom

A $50m Bazee

In continuation to my earlier post It's Time for Ebay to take the Bazee, the Global online auctioneer eBay Inc will acquire for $50 million (Rs 230 crore). Earlier the size of the deal was not known. The founder Avnish Bajaj, 33, and Suvir Sujan, 32, have just become the latest dot com millionaire poster boys of the nascent Indian Net scape joining the gangs of Sabir Bhatia ( and Rajiv Jain (

Wednesday, June 23

Mobile technologies speed comparison simulator for CDMA2000 EV-DO, CDMA2000 1X, GPRS and EDGE

Which Mobile Internet technology is the best ?

May be you can find it, by playing this simulation game at . The simulator here shows the differences in bandwidth and roundtrip delays for various mobile technologies. The simulator compares CDMA2000 EV-DO, CDMA2000 1X, GPRS and EDGE. A UMTS, GPRS, GSM-Data and Modem version. There are two version of the simulator one with EV-DO & one with UMTS.

You can find some good articles, product information, policy reviews and recommendations at Convergence Plus.

Related Links :

* Mobile Internet India 2003

* Convergence India 2005

We don't need Satyendra Dubey

Ranjeev C Dubey, managing partner of New Delhi Law Offices (South) writes in Business World India ; Why India doesn't need a Whistle Blower Act. To some extent he is correct, but what he expects "effective, responsible government" requires"effective, responsible society". The society is getting what its deserves but the penalty is paid by people like Satyendra Dubey. So the best solution will be to not to have people like Satyendra Dubey. Support corruption, save a life.
Corporate India does have legitimate fears: for one, cohesion, mutual faith and team play are the key to productivity, and institutionalised Orwellian squealing is its antithesis. Second, there are a thousand ways to victimise squealing employees, but such laws only encourage the incompetent to become whistle-blowers to avoid being sacked. Third, whistle-blowing settles extraneous scores, promotes 'political' subgroups, institutionalises internal and external blackmail, and adds to the predatory powers of our predatory state. Lastly, whistle-blowing results in defensive management, proliferates mindless procedures, and ultimately destroys initiative and risk-taking.

The key point here is that what applies to corporate India also applies to the government of India: a whistleblower law may only work to paralyse whatever still functions in the government. Let's face it, the whole corruption racket works on mutual benefits and fair distribution. What you probably will have with a whistle-blower law is a little benefit and a lot of problems.

So why do we need whistle-blower legislation? Laws don't automatically mean law-abiding societies. That apart, what will the law say that is not already covered under existing fair labour practice legislation ('thou shall not victimise') or, as in Dubey's case, the Indian Penal Code ('thou shall not kill')? So let me put it bluntly: to save a life such as Dubey's all you really need is appropriate and sensitive government response to credible information of corruption in high places, and an effective witness protection programme. These are administrative issues, not legislative ones.

This is not an argument for a whistle-blower law. This is only an argument for effective, responsible government. So let us focus on working towards responsible liberal governance and forget about the symbolism inherent in enacting a grand law we cannot and will not implement.

Policy Recommendations to Tackle Spam

Yahoo!, Microsoft, EarthLink and AOL Propose Key Best Practices and Technologies to Tackle the Problem of Unsolicited Commercial E-Mail. The complete proposal can be found at [ PDF ]

Tuesday, June 22

Can Linux improve the lives of millions of people too poor to own a computer?

From LinuxJournal & also a discussion on Slashdot:
Delixus, Inc. recently completed work on the Delixus e-Governance Platform 2004 edition that leverages the strengths of Linux to provide improved services to widows, pensioners and poor farmers in the Indian state of Karnataka. The Delixus e-Governance Platform addresses the needs of millions of rural poor citizens in India who receive widow or pension checks through services provided by local government offices. For several reasons, the current manual system is slow in getting checks to the people who desperately need the money. First, long distances often exist between the pension offices and the villages where people live. Second, cross-referencing multiple files for a single citizen often takes weeks due to the large volume of applicants. Third, citizens often are unaware when checks are ready for pickup.

The Digital Village : Business Week

Manjeet Kripalani in BusinessWeek writes about the "The Digital Village "; how the poor farmers of Karnataka are facing the benefits of digitization of the land records with equal access to information and proving as digital turning point for India. There is a great divide in India of haves and haves not, sometimes natural and sometimes artificial due to red-tapisim and exploitation. The equal access to information is a crucial right of any citizen and should not depend upon class, caste or status, thats what is the definition of Democracy. Technology can not only breat this divide and inquality or exploitation of system , but it also provides the power to the common man, the power of knowledge.
Stretching Resources

Many of these efforts are driven by the urge to profit: If a fraction of India's poor logged in or dialed up just once a day -- and paid a minuscule fee to a service provider for the privilege -- then the sheer mass could create a viable business. "If you can conceptualize the world's 4 billion poor as a market, rather than as a burden, they must be considered the biggest source of growth left in the world," says C.K. Prahalad, a leading management theorist who studies developing markets. Other pioneers are purely altruistic -- they want to break India's millennia-long curse of poverty.

It's an awesome curse, and at first look, it's hard to see how digital technology cooked up by some entrepreneurial do-gooders can relieve hunger or thirst or guarantee a better crop. No laptop, however cheap or durable, can compensate for India's lack of a nationwide power grid, or a comprehensive network of highways. But digital technology can deliver information -- information the rural poor desperately need -- about crop conditions, fertilizer prices, health care, and more. Reliable information can help India's poor stretch their resources -- to plant the right crops, deal with bureaucrats more effectively, operate on a level playing field with customers and merchants. The digital revolution in India is largely an information revolution..........

It's Time for Ebay to take the Bazee

Internet auction major is all set to aquire the local internet auction big-shot The valuation of the deal is not known right now, but according to the latest news promoted by media group Star and ICICI Bank , expects to break-even in the current financial year. was initially promoted by two Harvard graduates & first-time entrepreurs Avnish Bajaj and Suvir Sujan. Mr Sujan left the company for sometime and then returned to become the co-CEO

Monday, June 21

View on Indian Reforms

Barry Shlachter from Star-Telegram writes :Reforms set the stage for India's boom

As Americans learn every day, bits and pieces of their economy are being dismantled and shipped overseas. India gets the lion's share of business-process outsourcing -- 35 percent -- compared with China's 15 percent, and 6 percent each for Canada and Mexico. At last count, more than 700,000 Indians work in outsourcing activities.

A remarkable convergence of factors has put India in the right place at the right time to become the world's white-collar outsourcing leader: an abundance of cheap but educated labor that speaks English and access to cutting-edge telecommunications technology that links U.S. clients or consumers with Indian facilities as if they were next door.

Help lines for utilities, credit cards, computer makers and others are now staffed in Bangalore, which controls 35 percent to 40 percent of the country's export software and business-services work, as well as in other southern Indian cities, including Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Kolkata and New Delhi. Telemarketing, financial research, tax returns, book editing, medical transcription, mortgage processing and payroll chores are increasingly being outsourced. Software design and programming is even bigger.

While offshoring work makes up a minuscule slice of India's economy, it was expected to bring in revenues of $12.2 billion in India for the year ending in June. That's up 28 percent over the previous 12 months, according to India's National Association of Software and Services Companies, the outsourcers' industry group. About a third was earned by call centers and business-process operations, the rest by software developers and programmers.

It's not all one-way traffic.

Many of the computers used by Indian call centers and software design offices are American-branded.

"Dell, Dell, Dell," rattles off V.S. Srinivasan, a Mumbai-based business-processing consultant to Mastek, which has forged a joint venture with Carreker, a Farmers Branch firm that specializes in outsourcing for financial institutions. "Compaq, Compaq, Compaq."

In April, IBM signed a 10-year agreement to handle all information technology for India's largest cellphone company, Bharti Televentures, a deal that Big Blue estimated would be worth at least $700 million. The same month IBM paid $160 million for a major Indian call center called Daksh.

And many of the Indian outsourcing providers have opened offices in the United States, hiring executives and sales staff.

Saturday, June 19

ISP's concentrate on VAS

Earlier other than PSTN Dial-up & ISDN there were very few value addition with ISP like Leased Line, Hosting, Co-locating server, etc. But now with VSNL's demonopolization and increase in service spectrum and increase in the knowledge of corporate sector, ISPs are looking forward to gamut of Value Added Services like VOIP, DSL, Bandiwidth on Deman, VPN, Managed Services, Vide & Web Conferencing, Net Telephony, and lots of other mix-n-match of services. This Express Computer article discusses the slag faced by ISP idustry in general due to the dial-up dependancy of the customer, there is need for new technologies and new exitement. For example, I don't have boradband connection at home and may not in the near future also because in our area there are too many cybercafes and it should be profitable for my cable provider / internet provide to provide the connection in my area and/or building complex, but thanks to Reliance India Mobile I can now connect anywhere through my laptop or desktop.
Express Computer Online :The growth of the Internet subscriber base in India has slowed down, it was less than five percent during Q3 and Q4 of 2003. According to the Internet Service Providers Asso-ciation of India (ISPAI), this is because close to 95 percent of Indian customers are still on dial-up which is unreliable in terms of speed and quality of service. Worse, a dial-up user gets hit with hefty phone bills on top of what he pays the ISP.

ISPAI points out that ISPs are focusing on metros and select B-class cities. This leaves small towns where customers cannot afford the high cost of buying a PC, an Internet connection and paying the telephone charges for ‘net access. These users prefer to go the nearest cybercafe; hence the scope for increasing the dial-up subscriber base is very low. ISPs are therefore forced to look at VAS to make up for the loss they are incurring from pure dial-up services. Says Amitabh Singhal, president, ISPAI, “Out of the 4.1 million Internet subscribers in India, a majority reside in cities. That number can go up to 40 million if we offer value-added services such as broadband.”

ISPAI believes that Indian ISPs have plumped for the VAS route in order to be profitable with a low subscriber base. One obvious route is to sell services that increase bandwidth consumption and thereby the ISP’s revenues. Notes Singhal, “In the last couple of years, many Indian ISPs have shuttered their establishments due to the slow growth of their subscriber base. ISPs will have to offer broadband and value-added services to remain in business.”

Rediffmail goes 1 GB

After the launch of Gmail (google's email service) Yahoo! declared a 100 MB mail services but our very own Rediffmail dares to declare 1GB. Actually I was expecting the same from these email providers from long time since storages technologies have evolved and price/mb has dropped significantly, moreover the better management of space and deactivation of non-active members would have allowed yahoo & hotmail to provides space n x 10 MB long time ago. But there was no need, since there was no competition so nobody even thoought of providing . Now with google's announcement the need has arrived to sustain the customers. But from 5 MB to 1 GB jump is amazing. I hope people will not misuse this for 'xxx' attachments ;-).
BusinessWire: India Limited (Nasdaq:REDF), one of the premier worldwide online providers of news, information, communication, entertainment and shopping services today announced the launch of Rediffmail 1GB effective 2000 hours IST today, giving virtually unlimited storage space of 1 gigabyte to all its free email users in India and worldwide.

With immediate effect, Rediffmail users will also be able to send in a single email a message of size up to 10 megabytes.

Earlier this year, had launched Rediffmail with enhanced security and feature-rich add-ons. Rediffmail users already enjoy a simple-to-use, fast and secured experience. Rediffmail is secured with an exclusive Spam Shield and enables one to write emails in 11 Indian languages. will also start freeing up over 15 million email addresses that have not been in use over the years, giving new users a better chance of finding an email id of their choice. For the premium paid users, Rediffmail Plus and Rediffmail Mobile, the storage space available will be 2GB each. The storage previously available with Rediffmail was 5 MB and the mail message size 1 MB. For the paid Rediffmail Plus and Rediffmail Mobile users, storage was 10 MB and the mail message size 5 MB.

Friday, June 18

A lesson on "KISS"

One of the most memorable case studies on Japanese management was the case of the empty soap box, which happened in one of Japan's biggest cosmetics companies. The company received a complaint that a consumer had bought a soap box that was empty. Immediately the authorities isolated the problem to the assembly line, which transported all the packaged boxes of soap to the delivery department. For some reason, one soap box went through the assembly line empty. Management asked its engineers to solve the problem.

Post-haste, the engineers worked hard to devise an X-ray machine with high-resolution monitors manned by two people to watch all the soap boxes
that passed through the line to make sure they were not empty. No doubt, they worked hard and they worked fast but they spent whoopee amount to do so. But when a rank-and-file employee in a small company was posed with the same problem, did not get into complications of X-rays, etc but instead came out with another solution. He bought a strong industrial electric fan and pointed it at the assembly line. He switched the fan on, and as each soap box passed the fan, it simply blew the empty boxes out of the line. Moral of the story: KISS (Keep It Simple, Stupid) i.e.alwayslook for simple solutions. Devise the simplest possible solution that solves the problem :-)

Wednesday, June 16

3G CDMA 2000 expands in India

Reliance Infocomm and Tata Teleservices are the driving factors of telecom growth in India especially in CDMA network implementations. The anti-outsourcing brigade in US should see to this how Indian Companies are helping Qualcomm, Cisco, Lucent, Nortel, Ericsson, Alcatel and thousands of others not only as a consultant or contractors but also as a customer. Lets us all know what TRADE means. India is not just a cheap labour port it is also a R&D Hub and no longer it is follower of technologies it has become one of the early implementers too.
3gNewsRoom : Lucent Technologies announced it has been awarded a contract worth nearly $30 million to support the CDMA network expansion of Tata Teleservices in the state of Andhra Pradesh. Lucent will provide equipment, software and services to increase the coverage and capacity of Tata's network in this market.

Under the agreement, Lucent will supply Tata Teleservices with Lucent Flexent base stations that support 3G CDMA2000 1X service as well as upgrades for its mobile switching centers. The deployment will increase voice capacity on the network and enable Tata Teleservices to deliver a variety of value-added mobile high-speed data services such as video streaming and high- speed Internet access to more customers.

Related Links :

* Success and Future Opportunities for CDMA2000 Examined at 2004

* Lucent bags $30m Tata Tele deal

* India To BREW Mobile Apps

High Skilled Job Outsourcing Fumes

Steve Lohr (New York Times) writes: [Higher-skilled jobs not safe from outsourcing]
Although definitions vary, software architects are highly skilled workers who often earn six-figure salaries in the United States. The Microsoft contracts with Infosys and Satyam show that the work of software architects, senior software developers and software developers was being done by employees of the Indian companies working at U.S. Microsoft facilities.

A spokeswoman for Infosys said the company does not comment on its contracts. A Satyam spokesman could not be reached.

Critics of the outsourcing trend regard such agreements with Indian contractors, with work done both in the United States and in India, as a step toward shifting more and more skilled technology jobs overseas.

Related Links :

* Microsoft outsourcing high-end jobs, union says

High-End Technology Work Not Immune to Outsourcing

MSN's Plan for Asia

Palakunnathu G. Mathai interviews Sharon Baylay, regional general manager for MSN’s (Microsoft’s internet division) recently formed intercontinental, Asia and Nordics (ICAN) territory. She manages everything from Russia to Australia, Portugal, Greece, Turkey, Israel, the Middle East, south America, the Asia Pacific region and Canada.
She has been with MSN for the last four years and with Microsoft for 12 years. She spoke to Business Standard in Mumbai on the internet’s growth, of how internet companies can make money, among other things.
Is MSN making money in India? What is your turnover?

(Laughs) I wouldn’t be able to divulge this – we don’t talk about numbers on a country basis. But we’ve done very well here in terms of revenues, we’ve seen 100 per cent growth year on year in revenues for the last few years.

In 38 countries, India is definitely holding its own on a range of matrices. The business here is growing faster than in many of those countries and the opportunity here is much greater.

Related Links :

* India's VSNL Sees Robust Bandwidth Demand

* Nuclear spy or Internet freak

Monday, June 14

Juniper's CEO Scott Kriens On India

Juniper's CEO Scott Kriens On India in his Interview to BusinessWeek: ["There's One IT Market: The Planet" ]
In India, we'll have several hundred people in Bangalore by the end of the year. Some of them are in sales, but a lot of them are in development. There's a tremendous supply of talent. China is a different story. There's good labor for cheap, but also a huge economy. It's a very big, important market for us. In Russia, engineers cost half of what they cost in India and China. But there aren't a lot of English-speaking [engineers].

There's one IT [information technology] market: the planet. It's not a sustainable model to be a regional player.

Related :

* Profile of Scott Kreins on

Friday, June 11

The Internet Industry in India

Latest facts and figures of Indian Internet Service Providers found through GIPI india.

* ISP Licenses Issued - 540 Approx.

* Operational ISPs - 185 Approx

* Cities/Towns covered - 340 Approx.

* Internet Subscribers - 3.3 million Approx.

* Cyber Cafes / Public Access Kiosks - 12,000 Approx.

* In-principal approval for setting up Int'l Gateways - 45 ISPs

* Operational Int'l Gateways by 8 - 9 ISPs - 40 +

* Total Estimated Investment made by ISPs - Rs. 6000 crores

* Estimated Investment made on Eqpt. by ISPs - Rs. 2500 crores

* Estimated Employment Provided (Direct/Indirect) by Internet Industry - 1.1 lac

[Source : Internet Service Provider's Association of India]

What is ISPAI :
The Internet Service Providers Association of India (ISPAI) was set up in 1998 with a mission to 'Promote Internet for the benefit of all'. ISPAI originally started activities in 1994, when e-mail licensees such as Sprint RPG Ltd., Global Telecom Services Ltd., Wipro Ltd., Datapro Information Technology Ltd., Crompton Greaves Ltd., Satyam Infoway Ltd., etc came together with the express purpose of initiating continuous dialogues with the Department of Telecommunications and seeking to remedy various shortcomings in the License Conditions, impress upon the Licensor to review, change and add new guidelines, and last but not the least exercise the right to obtain timely and quality infrastructure and resources to enable High Quality Services to be delivered by the licensees / operators.

With the formal announcement of Internet privatization during the later part of 1997, EISPAI had taken a lead role in monitoring the privatization process. During December 1997, the first draft guidelines from Department of Telecommunications (DoT) were posted on the Internet without the provision of a Single 'All India' License. After aggressive representation by EISPAI, Category ‘A’ License for all India services was introduced in the draft license. We have since then been at the forefront of bringing about changes in the Internet Policy, through regular interaction with various Government Departments, other Industry Associations and Media.

ISPAI works closely with DoT, DIT, TRAI and Industry Associations such as FICCI, CII, Assocham etc. and it is our constant endeavor to take up and resolve various issues that affect implementation of the ISP's projects. ISPAI played a vital role in privatization of International Gateways within the laid down security constraints. Thus, ISPAI seeks opportunities to encourage and promote the use of Internet and IT enabled services, such as E-commerce, E-governance, Health Care and Distance Learning etc.

Related Links :

* Department of Telecommunications - India

* Ministry of Communications & Information Technology

* The Internet Service Providers Association of India (ISPAI)

Towards Cost Effective Internet in India : GIPI's recommendations

From CIOL :
Global Internet Policy Initiative (GIPI ) executive director, George Sadowsky has called upon India to make Internet access affordable for the common man and improve the quality of service, if it wants to increase Internet penetration in the country. Sadowsky was speaking at a seminar on global Internet policy organized recently in Delhi.

GIPI has submitted its set of suggestions to the Government of India. The suggestions include setting up of Internet Exchange to route domestic traffic within the country. "Government can promote the use of Internet by saving international bandwidth and lowering of tariff for calls made to access Internet. Wireless Internet is one thing, which has picked up in rest of the world and it should be properly encouraged in India too. All this should be done to compliment the development of local content. Tax benefits for hardware can also promote the use of IT and Internet as a whole," Sadowsky said.

What is GIPI :
The Global Internet Policy Initiative supports adoption of the legal and policy framework for an open and democratic Internet. The project works with local stakeholders in consultative, coalition-based efforts to promote the principles of a decentralized, accessible, user-controlled, and market-driven Internet.

Related Links :

* GIPI India's submissions to the TRAI consultation paper on accelerating growth of internet in India

* GIPI [India]

Internet growth – key learnings from India

Salute to Late Commando Sh. Surjan Singh

Via Email :
During The Attack on Akshardham temple on 24th Septmeber 2002 this Brave man fought the Greatest battle of this life.. Yes he was the N.S.G. Commando Late Mr.Surjan Singh who sacrificed his life for the Nation.Sadly On 19th May 2004 he Lost the Toughest and Longest battle against Life..Exactly after 600 Days being in Coma he lost this life. The Bullete Which hits him in the head made him Unconcious for almost 600 days.His Family members were hoping that one day their Hero will open his eyes but he didn't.It was the Longest Wait for the family members of this Brave Man.. When the whole india is busy in Guessing abt Who will be the Next PM of the Country..Will it be Sonia or will it be Manmohan singh,This man was fighting his Last battle.But it's so Sad that in the hype of all the Political Drama, the News abt his Death was Lost like a Needle in a haystack.Not even the Leading News Papers & So Called Best News Channels of india which Works on 24 X 7 basis, Failed to Highlight this story of a Brave Man. Unfortunately It was some where on the middle page of Some newspaper.....This was the Reward for the Brave task for which he lost his life..

Besides his Family members, Only one thing was there with him During those Toughtest 600 days.It was there near his bed till the last Moment.Can you Guess what is thing?...............

It was the "Tiranga",Yes our National Flag which was Waving and Saluting him for his Great Cause..Absolutely No words can Suffice our Gratitude towards him..

Related Links :

* Gujarat pays rich tributes to Akshardham hero

* Akshardham hero passes away

* Akshardham hero is no more

Thursday, June 10

Challenges faced by indian outsourcing industry

From SpaceDaily:

"Every year, about 70,000 jobs are added and the main challenge is how to attract people," he told delegates at a conference held by NASSCOM, India's leading information technology body, in the southern city of Bangalore.

"The challenge is also how to retain the pool. It's a collective challenge. We require a holistic approach to expand the pool and train people. The question here is how to retain the manpower to deliver quality and value."

Analysts say outsourcing labour attrition rates vary between 20 and 40 percent in some companies while at top firms it averages at least 15 percent.

The National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) said in a recent report the outsourcing industry was expected to face a shortage of 262,000 professionals by 2012.

is india ready for wi-fi

R.K.Choudhary writes in Wi-Fi Technology [Wi-Fi Technology in Indian homes, is India ready!] :
Wi-Fi @ Indian home has different Scenario. Unwiring Indian home doesn’t look so simple in compare to Western countries. There are some definite issues considered as far as the Indian home is concerned, like Broadband availability, Low PC penetration, Security, Perceived cost, Low education levels and Vendor indifference. Another major hurdle seems to be civil construction of the Indian home. The average Indian house is made of concrete and in most cases is restricted to one story in comparison to western countries, which are made of wood and stretches up to at least two floors.

But besides the above highlighted darker sides of Wi-Fi @ Indian home, we should not ignore the fact that India is the second most populous country in the world. India is shining, and its middle class is becoming more and more IT savvy. Whereas the Wi-Fi market worldwide is growing at an exponential rate, this rate would not be applicable in the Indian Wi-Fi market. However, after all, there should soon be a notable increase in its Wi-Fi market due to its size.

Related Links :

* Star India launches wireless division

India Shining is currently under re-construction

Andy Mukherjee, columnist for Bloomberg News writes about the "India Shining" campaign which is currently under re-construction ;-). He points out that there is no shortage of Slogans in India be it BJP or Congress and disucsses the real issues which nobody seems to be bothered about.
The high-decibel ``India Shining'' publicity blitzkrieg has come to a quiet, unceremonious end.

Type in your browser's address box now, and the message pops up: ``This Web site is currently under reconstruction.''

Wasn't it just three months ago that the government of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was using the $11 million campaign to ``spread the enthusiasm'' of ``these excellent times''?

One election changed everything.

Now that Vajpayee has been voted out, gone with him are the Internet images of beaming villagers and happy mothers. In public consciousness, they've been supplanted by new metaphors, which tell us how the new government will bring good cheer to every citizen before its five-year term is out.

Thankfully, there's no Web site, or television promos, to peddle the new dream of ``economic reforms with a human face.'' At least, not yet.

The government of Manmohan Singh, the new prime minister, will pursue economic policies that will benefit the common man to ``achieve the goal of making a billion people smile,'' India's President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam told lawmakers this week.

Investors must recognize that these too are slogans, and rather trite ones at that. The Congress party, back in power after eight years, has borrowed the idea of a billion smiling faces from nationalist leader Mohandas Gandhi, the Mahatma, who wanted to ``wipe every tear from every eye.''

3 G "BREW"s up in India

BREW : QualcommN. Suresh in Reports :
The 4th BREW developer conference at San Diego witnessed the launch of new age applications from Tata Teleservices using Qualcomm technology.

" It is yet another milestone," announced Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs, launching the 4th BREW developer conference. BREW is Qualcomm’s software platform which allows a host of new functionalities to be built into mobile handsets using its patented CDMA (code division multiple access technologies). Tata’s launch heralds the arrival of 3G (third generation) telecom services and India became the 21st country to offer such high-end services using the CDMA platform.

The BREW-based services will enable mobile customers to use the BREW phone to wirelessly download games, ring tones, communication, e-mail and business-focused application, virtually anytime, or anywhere. "Our customers demand cost-efficient, high-speed wireless Internet experience and the advanced voice and data services enabled by the BREW solution all us to easily exceed these expectations," said Amit Bose, president of telecom, Tata Teleservices, in a press release issued by Qualcomm.

Related :

* Qualcomm's Brew answers doubters

* BREW 2004 Keynote: new standard touted


* BREW 2004

Cybercops to monitor the chat rooms

From Gaurdian :
British "cybercops" are to join other law enforcers around the world which are patrolling internet chatrooms to try to protect children from paedophiles.

Assistant chief constable Jim Gamble, of the national crime squad, said the move was one of several measures to clamp down on adults using computers to view child pornography and "groom" children in order to abuse them. The Virtual Global Taskforce, which includes the NCS, the FBI, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, the Australian Federal Police, and Interpol, will nominate officers to monitor the net round the clock.

Apple's Airport ExPress

Source : Apple introduces yet another sexy thing : A 54 Mbps Wi-Fi Device - Airport Express :
Featuring AirTunes for playing your iTunes music wirelessly on your home stereo or powered speakers, AirPort Express brings not only the Internet but your music to wherever in your home you like to enjoy them most — whether you use a Mac or Windows PC. Unmatched in its ease of use, it delivers data rates up to 54 megabits per second, fits in the palm of your hand so you can take it wherever you go — and it costs just $129.

* Driving the Wi-Fi Revolution

In 1999, Apple sparked the wireless revolution with the introduction of AirPort, the first affordable and easy-to-use solution for accessing the Internet without restrictive cables. In 2003, AirPort Extreme took your unwired connection to the next level by harnessing the superfast 802.11g wireless standard for data rates nearly five times those of the 802.11b standard that the original AirPort used and many current wireless networking devices still use. With AirPort Express, Apple continues to advance wireless, delivering the first device to pack wireless networking, audio, printing and bridging capabilities into a single affordable, portable unit.

Related Links :

* Airport Express Weblog

* Why Apple's Airport Express May Unofficially Extend Non-Airport Networks

* In Depth Preview: Apple AirPort Express with Air Tunes

* AirPort Express Pumps Music over Wireless Nets

Wednesday, June 9

Outsourcing is not a threat

Raghuram G Rajan, economic counsellor and director of the IMF Research Department and Shang-Jin Wei , head of the research department's Trade Unit write in Business Times Asia [The non-threat that is outsourcing ]: According to the article every decade or so, developed countries develop a crisis of confidence that also along the lines of Election Years. For example in 1980s, it was fear of Japan and now it is fear of India during the election times.
First, consider the amount of 'insourcing', that is, the value of business services exported by a country like the US. Clearly, this is considerable - think of all the high-priced business consultants and lawyers in rich countries offering their services to the rest of the world.

What is noteworthy, however, is that in each of the past 10 years, the value of US insourcing has been greater than that of US outsourcing! This is true even though the US has been running a trade deficit and an overall current account deficit.

Most other rich economies also run a surplus in these service categories. None of this should be surprising as the rich countries tend to do high-value-added service activities relatively better than the rest of the world. In fact, the US has the largest dollar surplus of insourcing over outsourcing in computer, information, and business services (at US$21 billion in 2001). The second-largest surplus country, by the way, is not India, but the UK.

Put another way, if every country decided to put up barriers against outsourcing, the output of developed countries would fall far more than that of developing countries.

Related Links :

* RIL Sees Global Outsourcing Fuelling Domestic Demand

* IMF official paints rosy picture of global economy

* A master health check-up of financial system

Monday, June 7

IBM introduces masala

From NewsFactor
IBM has unveiled Masala, a new database technology that boosts productivity by integrating corporate data from a wide array of sources. The system uses automated features and search technology to allow users to access and manage data from e-mails, spreadsheets, text files, voicemail and other sources using a single tool.


* What is Project Masala?

Project Masala is the next wave of IBM information integration capabilities being developed to help clients grapple with the issue of getting the most value out of their existing information assets.

* What are we announcing?

Search is a fundamental capability within a company’s information management infrastructure. Masala provides advanced search capabilities to be released this year in DB2 Information Integrator.

* How does Masala search compare to internet search services?

Internet search services are concentrated on the needs of the consumer Internet market; whereas IBM is focused on the unique pain points of enterprise users who need to quickly find relevant corporate content.

* What is the business problem we are trying to solve?

Businesses lose money when relevant business information is unavailable to employees. IBM is targeting the core issue of finding the right information, to the right people without the IT complexity of existing solutions.

* How does Masala search relate to other search initiatives within IBM ?

WebSphere Portal provides basic search capabilities for Portal content. Masala adds broader content access, scaling to support larger implementations (500K+ documents), and is enabled for rich text analysis.

DB2 Content Manager Masala search provides native functionality to search both rich text documents and metadata for files stored in DB2 Content Manager along with other enterprise content.

DB2 Net Search Extender provides high-speed, scalable, integrated full-text search capabilities to DB2 Universal Database. Masala provides search for text documents stored in DB2 Universal Database and other enterprise data sources.

* How is Masala search related to WebFountain?

Masala and WebFountain share technologies but serve different needs. WebFountain is a hosted solution focused on advanced analytics for the internet, while Masala provides search and analytics capabilities for enterprise content.

Related Links :

* Search, Integration in the 'Masala' Mix For IBM

* IBM VP: 'Stinger,' 'Masala' Will Make Most of Data Flood

Indian biotech gets tax concession

From Sify:
The Government is considering to provide tax concessions to Biotechnology at par with Information Technology to promote Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in this emerging field of science.

Science and Technology Minister Kapil Sibal told UNI in an interview, that the government is planning to put in maximum resources to promote research in the field of biotechnology. |

Related Links :

* Biotech Bandwagon

* Regulating biotech

* Woman fights biotech firms in India's farming

* Biotech India 2003

* AIBA - All India Biotech Asociation

ISRO gets a 10mn EU Contract

From SpaceDaily:
India's space agency has won a 10-million-dollar contract to launch its first satellite for the European Union, the space chief said Saturday.

Madhavan Nair, head of the Indian Space Research Organisation, said the two sides signed an agreement to send a European satellite into orbit from the Indian-built Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle by the end of next year.

Related Links :

Indian Space Research Organisation
ISRO to launch Edusat in August

US firms to market Isro images

Global agencies bid to ride on ISRO's Moon mission

The Dirty little secrets of IT outsourcing By Nick Eian

Nick Eian , the CEO of Endurant Business Solutions, a consulting company that helps businesses, executives and entrepreneurs with organizational and technology challenges writes in Startribune [Dirty little secret of IT outsourcing ] :
While U.S. companies believe they're outsourcing to save money by employing workers with lower hourly rates in other countries, they're really fooling themselves. Project costs will begin to soar when they try to fix the predictable problems that occur with developers abroad (some are calling this "onshoring"). All the global outsourcing accomplished was to delay the inevitable reconciling of bad management practices, which can range from obsolete work processes to poorly defined goals.

In some cases, U.S. companies think outsourcing means they can radically speed up the development process. They throw more lower-paid offshore developers at a problem in an effort to get the project finished faster. That's sort of like thinking that nine pregnant women can get together and produce a single baby in one month. Obviously "more" doesn't mean "faster" when there are well-defined developmental steps that must be followed to produce a healthy result.

Outsourcing should be the result of a strategic business decision, after careful analysis proves that it's the only way to cut costs or access crucial raw materials. Instead, the decision to outsource frequently is made by frustrated corporate executives who are looking for easy solutions to tough problems.

IT Engineers Daily Routine

Via Email :

8:30AM: wake up

8:45AM: Tough decision ; To bath or not.

8:50AM: Have To.

10:30AM: Punch in.

10:35AM: Check Mail.

10:37AM: Check Again just in case...

11:00AM: Since It is already 11:00 wait for tea(11:15AM).

11:15AM: TEA party.

11:20AM: Check Mail.

11:25AM: Check again. can't Believe that no mail has come. Is every body dead or what ?

11:30AM: Sudden feeling of loneliness and desperation turn around to look for some body (Any body) to talk to.

11:40AM: Found a guy testing something. Feel real pity for his pathetic, boring and useless existence.

11:50AM: Sudden urge to get some work done and fast. Start looking for the file.(Can't remember it's name)

11:55AM: Boss summons in his office. Bad sign.

12:10PM: How the hell ! am I suppose to remember everything. Why should I be responsible for everything that goes bad.

12:15PM: Try to locate a scapegoat. No body around.

12:20PM: Mood is really bad decide to postpone work till after lunch.

12:30PM: lunch

1:00PM: Lunch over.

1:10PM: Go for a smoke. Can't even smoke in this god forsaken place.

1:35PM: Back from a smoke. It was good. I even did not paid for the cig. the other chap is so foolish.

1:50PM: Mood is good. Decide to go to cool web sites. Real sleazy thoughts.

2:30PM: Feeling real sleepy after such a mammoth mental effort.

2:45PM: Tea Time.

3:00PM: Chat and discuss with colleague on the bad state of the company. Blame everybody for incompetence and laziness.

4:00PM: A guy from testing comes for help.(Jerk)

4:11PM: Try to look busy.

4:12PM: He is asking for a techn! ical help.(Real jerk).

4:15PM: After really making him beg for help decide to take a look.

4:50PM: No solution found. really angry on the guy for getting myself involved.

4:55PM: Suddenly boss is spotted in the neighbouring area. Try make as much loud noise as possible with some obscure technical jargon thrown in.

5:00PM: Boss has gone back to his den. Coast is clear.

5:05PM: Blame the problem on RnD.

5:10PM: Check mail. "Yes" a mail has finally arrived.

5:13PM: It's a silly joke and old too. But it felt good.

5:14PM: a quick dash for gate.

5:15PM: Third in punching out.

5:25PM: Reached Room.

5:26PM: TV on. No worth while program.

8:30PM: Still no worth while program. Every body is getting lazy and irresponsible what will happen to this world GOD help us. Curse government and RnD.

8:45PM: Food arrives. Pretty bad and stinking.

8:48PM: Dinner finished.

8:50PM: Bay watch. At last some quality.

11:30PM: Mtv Grind. Hmm things are looking up.

12:45AM: Today there were really good programs.

1:46AM: Decide to sleep. Tough day ahead.

The Benefits of Anti-outsourcing sentiments

Bhupesh Bhandari & Bipin Chandran report in Business Standard that Indian BPO`s have received free advertising worth about $89mn because of anti-outsourcing campaign.
A report under preparation by New York-based market research firm Evalueserve, BPO to KPO —Business Process Outsourcing to Knowledge Process Outsourcing, has estimated that the Indian BPO companies have received free advertising worth about $89 million because of the anti-outsourcing campaign. The report is likely to be released in July.

Confirming the trend, more than one BPO company told Business Standard that there is a longer queue of American companies in front of their offices than ever before wanting to outsource work to India.

According to Exlservice, Inc president & CFO Rohit Kapoor, the company has had 15-20 per cent more visitors in the last quarter as compared to the same period a year ago. “This will translate into more business for 2005 and 2006,” he said.

Saturday, June 5

Multiply Integrates Group Publishing Tools With Social Networking

Via PRNewsWire :
Multiply ( has integrated group publishing tools with its proprietary messaging application powered by social networks. The site now allows any group or organization to maintain an on-line presence for sharing information and staying in better touch with its members. A group can instantly create its own web page where members are automatically alerted every time something new is published. Some or all of the information published by a group can also be made available to non-members, allowing the group to use Multiply as its public web site.

"Multiply's groups combine Yahoo Groups-type functionality with group features typical of social networking sites such as Google's Orkut," says Michael Gersh, Multiply's co-founder. "While other social networking sites use groups primarily as a means to link people together, Multiply provides groups with a destination to share photo albums, a calendar and a blog, with messaging tools that truly maximize the benefits of social networking."

About Multiply :
Multiply is a new kind of communication tool that opens up a unique and exciting way to keep in touch with the people you know, and find information through friends of friends.

Imagine if each of your friends, family members and co-workers had their own web page and regularly posted what's new in their lives - including their latest photos, stories, opinions on movies and restaurants, events, travel itinerary and more. Now imagine if you were alerted every time someone you knew posted something - so you could constantly see and discuss what's new in your friends' lives. Sounds like a pretty easy and fun way to stay in touch with your friends and family, right?

Now imagine if you could send a message that reaches all of your friends, family, co-workers - and all of their friends too. Anytime you needed a recommendation, advice or information, chances are you know someone who knows someone... who has the information you're looking for. And now you can find that person with one click of the mouse!

Now stop imagining because this simple new way to keep in touch, and fast new way to find information are exactly what Multiply is about.

Friday, June 4

What ? Microsoft Patents Double Clicks ???

Microsoft gains double-clicking patent and wanna play the GOD. I think patents should have some social clause attached to it. If man is a social animal then patents must have some boundaries and social consideration and its social impact.Double click is simply an extension to the idea of mouse which was invented XEROX Palo Alto Laboratary and first incorporate by Apple. Microsoft may not excercise its patent right very strictly but nobody can stop legally if they want to. Patenting is good for business in one way and thats why it exists but it should have jury based application which would think wholesome and would also consider the effect of the patent and its impact on society . Just imagine if there was a patent on "Wheel"?.
Microsoft has successfully patented using short, long or double clicks to launch different applications on "limited resource computing devices" - presumably PDAs and mobile phones. The US patent was granted on 27 April.

Now any US company using a variety of clicks to launch different software functions from the same button will have to change their product, pay licensing fees to Microsoft or give Microsoft access to its intellectual property in return.

British company Symbian, which makes operating systems for mobile phones that employ double clicks and has offices in the US could be affected, as could PalmOne in California, which supplies PDA software.

Several activists who oppose software patents say that Microsoft's patent is not a "sensible use" of the patenting system because the idea of the long, short and double clicks is neither novel or non-obvious.

Both the US and the UK use these criteria to decide whether or not to grant patents. "It is almost beyond parody that Microsoft has been able to do this," says Ian Brown of the Foundation for Information Policy Research in London, UK.

Related Links :

* The History of Software Patents

* Petition for a Software Patent Free Europe

* Software Patents

* Petition Against Software Patents [US]

* Software patent [Wikipedia]

* EC votes for software patents, re-opens can of worms

* Software patents: 'A really bad idea'

* An open-source call to arms

Toxis Dust On Computer and its Effect on Health

Sci Tech News Reports :
Toxic dust found on computer processors and monitors contains chemicals linked to reproductive and neurological disorders, according to a new study by several environmental groups.

The survey, released by Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition, Computer TakeBack Campaign and Clean Production Action, is among the first to identify brominated flame retardants on the surfaces of common devices in homes and offices.

Electronics companies began using polybrominated diphenyl (PBDEs) and other flame retardants in the 1970s, arguing that the toxins prevent fires and cannot escape from plastic casings.

The study found that tiny particles of the toxic chemicals are leaching out, escaping into the air and attaching to ordinary dust on the computer equipment.

From Computer TakeBack Campaign :
Discarded personal computers and consumer electronics – so-called “e-waste” – compose one of the fastest growing and highly toxic waste streams in the industrialized world. There will soon be an estimated 300 million to 600 million obsolete computers in the U.S., with fewer than 10% recycled. Containing lead, mercury, cadmium, and dioxin-like flame retardants, obsolete computers pose a serious threat to human health and the environment when improperly disposed or recycled. Taxpayers and local governments bear the cost and burden of managing these wastes. The Computer TakeBack Campaign was formed in response to this growing crisis, promoting brand owner and producer responsibility for e-waste.

Polybrominated biphenyls (PBBs) and polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) are manmade chemicals found in plastics used in a variety of consumer products to make them difficult to burn. Some people who ate food contaminated with PBBs in the 1970s had skin problems. Almost nothing is known about health effects of PBDEs in people. PBBs have been found in at least 9 of the 1,613 National Priorities List sites identified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). PBDEs have not been identified in any of the 1,613 sites.

Related Links :

* Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition

* Computer TakeBack Campaign and Clean Production Action

* polybrominated diphenyl

The Vanishing IT Department & The Outsourcing Effect

Art Jahnke writes in C: Is Outsourcing Stealing Our Spirit?

In the June 1 issue of CIO magazine, columnist Jerry Gregoire argues [The Vanishing IT Department
] that outsourcing is not the biggest threat to modern IT departments. At least, it’s not the biggest direct threat. Gregoire, a former CIO of PepsiCo and Dell, says the thing that’s really killing IT these days is energy—a lack of energy to chase down new talent, to bring it in-house and get it juiced about being part of a kick-ass IT team.

Related Links :

* The IT Directors view of outsourcing

* Study: India's outsourcing industry continues to boom

* HP stepping up outsourcing in India, sources say

* Dell's outsourcing 'time bomb'

* Microsoft and HP step up Indian outsourcing

* US coming to terms with outsourcing

The New Indian Railway Budget : By Mr. Laloo ji Prasad Ji Yadav Ji

Via Email :

01. Re-introduce steam locos - to boost coal industry in bihar.

02. Dismantle the reservation system, all seats will be open to janata, no more reservations by upper cast and rich people.

03. A/c coaches will be abolished, a/c s will be auctioned in chhapra.

04. Shatabdi expresses to be renamed as RabriDevi express.

05. 10 new trains to be introduced from different parts of bihar to patna.

06. All double lines to be reduced to single track to cut costs - the rails, sleepers etc to be auctioned in muzaffarpore.

07. Samjhota express will run from patna to peshwar, however it will be converted to a goods train to carry fodder.

08. New maha bhoj - litti and sattu - to be served in all luxury trains - palace on wheels, deccan odyssey etc.

09. Re-zoning of railways: north bihar, south bihar, north eastern bihar, central bihar, east bihar, south bihar, res! T of india - these will be new zones.

10. Next of kin of all people who die in train accidents will be given a job in railways, no more rail board exam or wastage of public money.

11. Any driver who dies in a train accident will not be allowed to drive any more for public safety.

12. Every village in india will have a railway station by 2007 - constructions to start soon.

13. Free tickets for farmers.

14. De-electrification of major lines to save power. Local trains in mumbai kolkata chennai and delhi to run on steam too.

15. Special "gaai-bhains" express for transporting domestic animals, who have been neglected by the fundamentalist govt.

16. There will be no ticket checkers in train, that shows the new govt trusts the people.

Thank you / Lalloo Par sad Yadav

Thursday, June 3

Open Source Inside The Intel BIOS reports :
Intel is moving to replace the antique BIOS code currently used to boot up computers with an open-source alternative. BIOS lets computer hardware communicate with operating systems and other software applications, but using the 20-year-old technology today is "barbaric," says Meta Group analyst Steve Kleynhans

It's now open source inside.

10 Hottest Technologies : Telecom Magazine

10 Hottest Technologies for 2004 according to the Telecom Magazine :

* PacketCable Multimedia

* Service Interworking

* Carrier-Class Network Security

* Line-Powered DSLAMs

* Wi-Fi/Cellular Roaming

* Meshed Wireless Networking

* Hosted VoIP

* Active Ethernet

* Back Office Automation

* Resilient Packet Ring

Protecting Kids From The Internet

The internet chat crimes especially concerned with the exploitation of minors are on the rise. Parents really need to vigil, internet is not like TV which can be kept "Always ON" without any monitoring. Even too much of TV is not good for mind and body both. Parents cannot just shrugg off their responsibility by blaming the media and the internet, personal sensorship is the best method to protect you and your family. And the most important step towards this is to become "aware" of what is happening with your TV and Computer and how it is being used. Here are some links and references to get you started :

* A Parent's Guide to Internet Safety [FBI]

* Chat Safe [Thames Valley Police]

* Protecting children from harmful material on the Internet

* Kids and Chat Safety

* Wired Patrol



Emergent Social Networking with LOAF

John Sequeira writes about Loaf :
LOAF is a simple extension to email that lets you append your entire address book to outgoing mail message without compromising your privacy. Correspondents can use this information to prioritize their mail, and learn more about their social networks. The LOAF home page is at
Why do I like LOAF?

It's emergent: You don't need to maintain explicit links to people in your network, it's mined from your address book

The user owns the data. No need to assign ownership of your friends to an aggregating monetizing marketing web site.

It answers a question that will become more and more vital as details of our life are increasingly digitized: how do you share these details without losing your privacy? It's not clear to me how many data types the Bloom Filters could be extended to, but as a proof-of-concept I think it's great.