Saturday, May 29, 2010

Featured website : Movavi

Movavi Online Video Converter
Wow! Free video conversion online -- That too, it does what all the softwares I'm trying have failed to do -- it COMBINED 2 videos into one!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Ovation 2010

Check out the pics on: - an investment I'll always cherish

Rang De

>>Update: My post got feattured on's blog! Click here to see!
A year ago, I had invested Rs.2000/- in a passionate 5-minute debit card transaction, with website through which we can make small investments directly to help small entrepreneurs in some far-off places in India where we otherwise could not travel.

Friends and family I later talked with about this, had cast doubts on the trustworthiness and effectiveness of such setups, they poo-poohed my unwise decision and our conversation had ended there...

One year on, I'm proud to announce good news : performance is a better indicator than status and appearance.... while the huge banks of the world are having such a rut from their lending and then sucking money from taxpayers, it looks like micro investment options like RangDe are getting almost 99% of all the money lent out, returned on time.

I will let the screenshots below speak for themselves - and am glad I was able to help out a small time entrepreneur in Andhra Pradesh. I now have nearly all my invested money back and am re-investing part of it with a breakfast vendor in Maharashtra.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Climate Change vs. Armageddon (movie)

I talked recently with a quite rich and very smart shares trader who talked about the Global Warming "conspiracy" in the same way he talks about Shares - purely speculating on everything, and all his points being centered around what this and that company is Doing, rather than talking anything about what's actually happening!

People need to draw the line between speculation and reality, they need to step out of their air conditioned home, office and car when they have to think about this issue, or else it all ends up in "I don't think there's any problem! It's all a bunch of profiteering! In winter we had record cold temperatures!"

I then asked him if his parents had ever experienced a heat wave like the one right now (North India), what duration of the day it used to stay hot earlier, where did the cool summer breeze go (we only have hot wind now), and about the fact that the crops can't last when it's both hotter than usual in summer and colder than usual in winter. No reply to that, and then he returned back to speculative talk about the economics of switching to green, and how since it's about a 1000 bucks costlier, he'd rather not do anything, and there was no talk about what he plans to do When the tipping point is reached.

How do we tackle this zero-sum crap? How can people keep talking about money matters and comfort level when the food supply itself is in peril? I mean, you can have millions in stock options, and an air conditioned car and fabulous house and gadgets and everything, but with no food you're dead just the same! And the first thing that's going down in this climate change scenario is that the crops are going to die off the very day the extreme temperatures cross their max OR min limits, no matter what the "average" year-round temperature is!

And then there's the other party - "It's a natural phenomenon - all Sun related!"
Alright, so for a minute I believe you, it's all a *natural* cycle, so THEN what??

The temperatures are still going over the max and below the min limits. Storms are getting worse and more and more often. Fine, so it's all natural, Not Man-made. Ok, you win.
This question I'd like to target at every American :: YOU made the Armageddon movie. The problem : a meteor is heading for Earth. We're all going to die. So what did the people in the movie do? Did they spend the years in the run-up debating whether this meteor is man-made or natural? Did they mope around like the pussies we see today, arguing about the economics of saving the world - did anyone point out that it's cheaper if they just let it happen and not do anything about it? Did they dismiss the whole thing just because the experts were unable to establish exactly which spot on earth it would hit?

No. They loaded up some rockets with the baddest bombs ever, and blew the mother-****er out of the sky. And they didn't do it 20% or 50% or 80% - they didn't wait for complete accurate data to come in and be presented in a nice manner before they lifted a finger, they didn't wait for the thing to cross the danger zone before deciding to act. They just went ahead and saved the world.
And THAT's how you solve a problem when it threatens all life as you know it.

So how about we turn this climate change problem around as well? If it's a Natural phenomena, are YOU going to sit around and watch your world crumble? Are you going to keep postponing real action until the Economics justify it - meaning until the petroleum, coal and natural gas reserves all run out? Here's a nice quote from a TED talk : "They didn't move out of the Stone Age just because they ran out of stones."

I'm sick of these pussies nit-picking endlessly. Simple questions they can't answer, and then they start off on word quests, all resulting in nothing. I don't CARE who created the problem or about its little details - but the problem IS HERE and it's right in my face. There's a time when you gotta do what you gotta do. Solve it, or get out of my way.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Short poem for a friend leaving for further studies

A new journey awaited,
with breath bated
and dreams aloft in the air

though depart you must,
in this you can trust
as your friends we'll always be there.

Keep the faith in yourself,
leave your doubts upon the shelf,
as you step over a new threshold

Excel you will
so enjoy to your fill
the adventure that will now unfold!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Monday, May 10, 2010

Imp info for India broadband users : many sites being blocked for no reason - change your PC's DNS addr to resolve

IMPORTANT info for all Airtel, Data-One (and maybe other) broadband users in India:

THE PROBLEM: Of late, more and more websites are becoming inaccessible - the internet is shrinking!
Just search for some random things on google images, and you will see that many of the results are leading to error, as if the site is down.
There is no real problem with the websites -- it's our ISP's (Internet service providers) that are at fault!

HOW can we know there's a problem with our ISP?
Go to a proxy browsing website like, enter the same URL from there and if it works, you'll know you're on to something. The same addresses are also working fine from my cell phone's GPRS connection and mobile internet providers like Reliance. But it seems all fixed line Broadband customers in India are being affected.

Example: (my website was using this and has gone DOWN since last 3 days!)
If the above link returns an error, then that means you too are one of the many internet users in India that are being blocked from selected websites! (originally, it's a small text file)

WHAT TO DO : There is a way to get around the problem in just 5 mins :
Replace your network adapter's DNS servers with OpenDNS server:
Credit to this site for the addresses. See the walkthrough below for details.

I don't know when our ISP's will wake up to fix this issue - my own website had been inaccessible since night of 7th May 2010. I replaced the DNS addresses, and instantly the problem was fixed. Please spread this simple fix to all your friends who are using Airtel Broadband or other services.

WALKTHROUGH: Follow these simple steps, for those who have Vista / Windows 7 Operating System: (for XP, skip to step 3)

1. Right-click on your connection icon (wireless as in my case, or could be LAN or other in your case)
Choose "Open Network and Sharing Center"

2. In the window that opens, click on "Change Adapter Settings" on the left pane

3. Now the Network Connections window will open up (XP Users may have a different way of directly reaching this).

It will list the various adapters etc you have in your comp, most usual being Local Area Connection and Wireless Network Connection.

4. Choose the one you use for your internet. Right-click and select Properties. The following window will open up:

Double-click, (or choose and click Properties) on "Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)"

5. In the next window, in lower half, choose second DNS option ("Use the following DNS addresses")

Note down the exisitng ones in case you may have, and replace them with these OpenDNS addresses:

6. Press OK, then OK again, and now you're done!
If needed, disconnect your internet (or switch off your laptop's Wireless) and reconnect again to complete the changes.

7. Acid test to check: Browse to this URL:
And you should be able to see some simple text written instead of "taking too long to respond" or other such error.

I don't know when the broadband ISP's will fix their problem, but till then, this is a good work-around. There must be some legal recourse, because by blocking selected websites they are unlawfully restricting Internet freedom and that is illegal in India as of now. (Now I know how the Chinese feel!)

Please forward this to all your friends who are using Broadband internet in India!

Idea for selling Electric cars

My comment posted on :

Idea for selling electric cars even at current prices:
1. A = cost of a fuel car of the same level.
2. B = fuel, + other oils, maintenance cost per month calculated depending on the customer's average driving distance.
3. C = Electric bill + maintenance cost per month if we replace the fuel with the electric car for the same distance.
4. D = Cost of electric car

Now, have a finance / EMI scheme wherein the customer pays in installments over a period of M months, such that
D = A + (B-C)*M

So for the customer, there is NO difference between having a fuel or electric car since the installments equals the fuel costs they'd have to bear. But after M months, they'll suddenly see themselves driving a car and not having any fuel expenses - whereas with their purportedly "cheaper" fuel car they'd be shelling out the dough for the whole life of the car.

So equate the fuel costs with installments and reduce the first price - There! We now have an electric car that's cheaper. I'll leave the calculations to you. I guess the value of M is key here, could you please calculate the payback period? Within reasonable limits, we can leave it to the customer to vary the installments they pay per month and so increase / decrease the value of M.

I don't think this is any original idea - for me it's a logical conclusion given that I'm replacing a high-monthly-cost product with a low-monthly-cost product. It's akin to moving from a rented residence to one I've bought. I don't think we even need to bring the environment into the picture when we try to sell this - the economics is attractive in itself.

Gift Economy

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