Saturday, December 15, 2007

Yahoo goes local

Just look at the add to the right of the image.

I have also seen Warid & Telenore ads on Yahoo quite recently.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

"IT manager at the South Pole". What ?????

Yeah, this was the first thing that crossed my mind, when I read the interview of an IT Manager, live from the South Pole.

Few snippets from the interview:

What technical challenges do you face?

Our biggest challenge is bandwidth. We only have it only 12 hours a day at anywhere from T-1 (1.54 Mbit/sec) to 3 Mbit/sec speeds. We also have a transponder that we can use to send 60 Mbit/sec unidirectional from the pole to the real world. We use that to upload scientific data. Our record was 94Gbytes out in one day.

We have three different satellites we use to provide our Internet. All of those are pretty ancient. We have a weather satellite, an old maritime communications satellite and an old NASA satellite, the first one that was launched back in 1981. The others were launched in 1976 or 1977.

Basically we're scavenging whatever we can find and we can only see each satellite for 3 to 4 hours a day. Other than that we're almost a typical network. We use Cisco gear, we've got land lines to all of the bedrooms, we've got fiber optic distributed throughout the building so if fiber to the desktop ever becomes a reality the building is prewired for that. So we are trying to be as future proof as possible.

And this:

In many data centers in the U.S. heat density is becoming a problem. Surely that's not an issue for you?

You would think that at the South Pole cooling wouldn't be a problem but with the amount of heat we generate [in the data center] getting rid of it actually can be quite an issue. We try to pipe some that heat to other parts of the building to recover it. The data center in the old station just had a hole cut in the wall with a fan [to the outside] to cool the systems. Sometimes you'd be sitting there in a parka trying to get something done.

And this seems to be in need of a little bit of censor, but anyhow:

What's the most outrageous experience you had?

We have this tradition called the 300 Club. When the temperature drops below -100 we hike the sauna up to 200 degrees and stay in there as long as we can stand it. Then we run outside, naked, around the geographic pole and back inside so we get that total 300-degree change in temperature. That happens every year and it's absolutely amazing. Just the feel of that cold on your skin is like nothing else. People always wonder if you can feel the difference between 60 below and 100 below and the answer is absolutely.

Seems like a job?

[via Slashdot ]

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Flickr Photo Editor

Yahoo-owned Flickr integrated web-based photo editor Picnik. This way you can click Edit on top of your image uploaded to Flickr to switch into a photo retouching mode, where you can then crop, resize, adjust colors, apply effects, add text and clip arts, and more. Most features are free, though you need to upgrade to Picnik Premium for ~25 bucks/ year to use stuff like Polaroid effects. While you won’t be able to do advanced PhotoPaint/ Photoshop things, this whole thing works quite brilliantly already

[via Blogoscoped]

Monday, December 10, 2007

Can you write it human readable?

I was literally amazed to see this. Although quite weired but what an idea!!

Function Show Books (search query)

If the database connection as specified in global
settings isn't open, open it.
Grab all book records which contain the search
query anywhere.
Note to escape the search query above.

If some records are found, do this:

For each record in the records, do this:
Display the record content in an HTML
table row.
If the length of the record content above
is over 30 characters, remove subsequent
Note to escape HTML entities above.

Wrap the above in an HTML table.

otherwise, do this:

Display a "sorry" message taken from the site
messages file.
Use local language setting for that message.
Wrap message above in an HTML paragraph of
the "sorry" class.

Close the database connection.

For this whole function, use a medium priority,
and spread it across different servers for extra
If the function takes more than 0.5 seconds to
finish, email the site administrator as defined in
the global settings with details about what

For this whole function, if the search query is
empty, display the "empty search query" message
from the site messages file. Use local language
settings for that message.

For this whole function, display important
ambiguities before compiling.

End of Function

[via Blogoscoped]

Be careful ...

when you are chatting with a prospective "friend" :)

"Those entering online dating forums risk having more than their hearts stolen.

A program that can mimic online flirtation and then extract personal information from its unsuspecting conversation partners is making the rounds in Russian chat forums, according to security software firm PC Tools"

So be carefull !!!

[Via CNet]

Friday, December 07, 2007

YouTube under scrutiny

They say, "There is nothing free in this world. " and "Everything comes with a price tag."
So is the case with YouTube. Yeah, you don't pay bucks, as yet, but the price is not only paid in bucks, then.

As Slashdot reports:

"University of Toronto researchers have uncovered widespread misinformation in videos on YouTube related to vaccination and immunization. In the first-ever study of its kind, they found that over half of the 153 videos analyzed portrayed childhood, HPV, flu and other vaccinations negatively or ambiguously. They also found that videos highly skeptical of vaccinations received more views and better ratings by users than those videos that portray immunizations in a positive light. According to the lead researcher, 'YouTube is increasingly a resource people consult for health information, including vaccination. Our study shows that a significant amount of immunization content on YouTube contradicts the best scientific evidence at large. From a public health perspective, this is very concerning.' An extract from the Journal of the American Medical Association is available online."

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