Thursday, November 22, 2007

Unix.. Who cares??

I remember I had to study the basics of Unix in my 3rd Semester but I had found it utterly boring (in fact anything I study in my course curriculum automatically turns into a boring stuff). Recently I have been introduced to the Solaris Operating System, and obviously it has taken me back to Unix. Sun Microsystems has additionally given some learning resources from where I can get to brush up the Unix OS.

I started my course about two weeks ago, and unfortunately I haven't been very regular because of my ongoing examinations. But definitely my entire approach to Unix and the terminal/command line has changed. Since I am on a Mac I have the benefit of having the best of both the worlds - GUI and a natively running Unix OS command line. So how does the Terminal and the GUI compete against each other?? Here is my opinion:
Let me take a simple example.
Say, on a Mac you have to eject a pen drive. What are the options?? You have a small eject icon next to the device in the finder windows. You can click that and the drive is ejected. But definitely its not preferred. You can also have a eject menu in the menu bar. Naah!! What you like to do is drag the drive into the trash and poof!! The drives unmounted. Now you love doing that, why so? Cause everyone around is impressed by it and also its super cool!! Now on the other hand there is also another way... do it through the Terminal. So you have a simple unix command 'umount -fv /dev/disk1s1' Hey its not working!! Gives an error... So, dig the Internet... scratch you head... Google loads of keywords and finally you come up with 'diskutil unmountDisk /dev/disk1'. And once you get to that... trust me u'll love using it. Why? Cause its Classy and its Techy. So if you have to choose between Cool and Classy what do you choose? Most probably Cool is the first choice. But just give Classy a shot. Maybe u'll start loving it just like I am. For me, at least for the time being... Classy is in, cool is out!!
Similarly 'hdiutil attach diskimage.dmg' is really a classy way of mounting disk images. Just give it a try.

Friday, November 16, 2007


I recently did a software update and a newer version of Safari 3 was intalled, and thankfully.... Google Chat inside Gmail is working!!... and as usual I'm loving it!!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

A small glimpse of Panjab University

I have uploaded my first public album taken with my camera

Its just a part of Panjab University, I'll take some more pictures and upload them later. 

Bizarre, but a must read.

खतरो के खिलाड़ियों... ज़हरीले भूखे कुत्तो... अब आ गया है वो दिन... T20 विश्व विजेताअों दिखा दो तुम में अभी भी है वो जोशो-खरोश जो दुश्मन की माँ बहन equalize कर दे... शातिर सूरमाअों, आगे आने वाले युद्ध में विजयी लौटना... जय बाबा बाप्पी नाथ। I am a disco dancer... O yeah!!

My final sessional exams for this semester are just over. This was an SMS that I received from one of my hostel mates during the exams. It is supposed to serve as a "confidence booster"-cum-"all the best" message for the sessional exams. By the way the person who sent this message is a Sardar (no offence) who is a Bappi Lahiri fan. He makes up these messages when he gets fed up of studying during exams and sends them around. He has been doing this for quite some time now and I finally decided to share it on my blog.

Monday, November 12, 2007


I have nothing much to write... Just have a look at the news paper clips. (Just open up the images in new window to read the articles).

5th Nov 2007

6th Nov 2007

Unfortunately one of the car that fell victim of the assaults belonged to my friend...

7th Nov 2007

And when I finally came back from my Diwali break... some traces still remained

I remember quoting the Elections as adventurous once... its slowing turning into an unpleasant experience.

Friday, November 09, 2007

शुभ दिपावली

Wishing all of you a very Happy Diwali.

Please solve the bug!! Every time I try to edit an old post.... Its date/time of publishing changes to current time (Inspite of the fact that I manually change the date and time!!).


Just to notify the few viewers of my blog... check out this newly created blog.
It'll have all the sun-related things that the Sun Club of UIET is involved in.

And ya.. PUSU-INSO won this time. Another election comes to an end... only one more to go for me. :)


Did you hear the shot??

If no here it is...

Yes its the first gift that I am gifting myself... of some hard earned money. So no more running after my uncle for digital camera, I own one now. And a nice sleek one.

I wanted to by a decent digicam within a decent budget and surprisingly a Sony Cybershot DSC-W80 fulfilled all my needs (except of course I wanted a better zoom). I usually do a good survey over the Internet to make sure that the product I am about to buy is the best one that I could afford in the market. And the same trend followed with this one. Although I wanted to consult the king of photography before buying this one, I really could not wait for his reply, and I just went for this one. I hope he approves of my decision.

I had considered Canon and Sony (I know Nikon is also a biggie... but really I dont find the name of the company "catchy" enough) and there were a few deserving candidates. But really, the videos on these two pages really made my decision a lot simpler.

Tech Specs...


Product Type Digital camera - Point and shoot
Color Silver
Weight 4.4 oz
Width 3.6 in
Depth 2.3 in
Height 0.9 in
Body Material Metal

Main Features

Resolution 7.2 megapixels
Sensor resolution 7.2 megapixels
Optical Sensor Type Super HAD CCD
Effective Sensor Resolution 7,200,000 pixels
Optical Sensor Size 1/2.5 in
Light Sensitivity ISO 100, ISO 200, ISO 400, ISO 800, ISO 1600, ISO 3200
Digital Zoom 2 x
Shooting Modes Frame movie mode
Shooting Programs Snow, Beach, Landscape, Soft snap, Twilight mode, High sensitivity, Twilight portrait
Special effects Sepia, Vivid, Black & White
Max Shutter Speed 1/1600 sec
Min Shutter Speed 1 sec
Exposure Metering Multi-segment
Exposure Modes Program, Automatic
Exposure Compensation ±2 EV range, in 1/3 EV steps
White Balance Presets, Automatic
White Balance Presets Flash, Cloudy, Daylight, Fluorescent, Incandescent
Digital video format MPEG VX
Still Image Format JPEG
Continuous Shooting Speed 2.8 frames per second
Color support Color
Image Stabilizer Optical (Super Steady Shot)
TV Tuner None
Video Capture MPEG - 640 x 480, MPEG - 640 x 480, MPEG - 320 x 240

Memory / Storage

Flash Memory 31 MB Flash - Integrated
Integrated Memory 31 MB
Floppy Drive None
Flash memory 31 MB - Integrated
Supported Flash Memory Memory Stick Duo, Memory Stick PRO Duo

Lens System

Type Zoom lens - 5.8 mm - 17.4 mm - F/2.8-5.2
Focal Length 5.8 mm - 17.4 mm
Lens Construction 5 group(s) / 6element(s)
Lens Manufacturer Carl Zeiss

Additional Features

Self Timer Yes
Self Timer Delay 2 sec, 10 sec
Additional Features Direct print, Face detection, Auto power save, Built-in speaker, PictBridge support, USB 2.0 compatibility, Digital noise reduction, In-camera red-eye removal

Camera Flash

Effective Flash Range 8 in - 11 ft
Type Built-in flash
Flash Modes Auto mode, Fill-in mode, Slow synchro, Flash OFF mode
Red Eye Reduction Yes
Effective flash range 8 in - 11 ft
Features AF illuminator


Viewfinder Type Optical - Real-image zoom
Color support Color


Type LCD display - TFT active matrix - 2.5 in - Color
Mounting Built-in
Resolution 115,000 pixels

Digital Player (Recorder)

Type None


Type Microphone - Built-in


Connector Type 1 x Composite video/audio output, 1 x USB
Expansion Slot(s) 1 x Memory Stick PRO Duo

Lens Systems

Auto Focus TTL contrast detection
Type Zoom lens
Focal length 5.8 mm - 17.4 mm
Focal Length Equivalent to 35mm Camera 35 - 105 mm
Focus adjustment Automatic
Auto Focus Points (Zones) 9
Min Focus Range 19.7 in
Macro Focus Range 4cm
Lens Aperture F/2.8-5.2
Optical Zoom 3 x
Zoom Adjustment Motorized drive
Lens construction 5 : 6
Features Aspherical lens, Built-in lens shield


Cables Included 1, 1 x A/V cable, x USB cable
Included Accessories Wrist strap


Power Device Battery charger - External

System Requirements for PC Connection

Operating system MS Windows ME, MS Windows XP, MS Windows 2000, Apple Mac OS 9.1, Apple Mac OS 9.2, Apple Mac OS X 10.0 - 10.4
Peripherals USB port, CD-ROM drive


Supported Battery 1 xSony NP-BG1 Li-ion rechargeable battery - 960 mAh ( Included)

Manufacturer Warranty

Service & Support 3 year warranty
Service & Support Details Limited warranty - Parts and labor - 3 year
Type 3 year warranty, - Limited warranty - Parts and labor
Full contract period 3 year


Type Drivers & Utilities, Sony Picture Motion Browser

Back View:


Apart from these.. I got a 1Gb Memory Stick Pro and also a leather carrying case.

I haven't used it much but the only 2 bad things that I find about this product is that firstly the charging adaptor is separate and the battery cannot be charged through the camera (through USB). Secondly the USB cable us coupled with AV cable.. so it becomes slightly bulky.

From now on u'll start seeing some photos in my posts.

Edit: Warranty is 3 years, not 1 year.

Sunday, November 04, 2007


Let me clarify one thing... the countdown is not in seconds, or minutes. Its in hours. Now guess what am I talking about... Elections
So polls in the next 10 hours and the results withing an hour or two after the elections.

Although I have covered a lot about the PU polls from kidnappings to midnight raids, I have never shared "this bit". Let me title it "A Day Before D-Day".

It started with a wonderful morning... sunny and chilly. But it really felt different when I woke up. Reason: Open House. So Open House is where all the political parties meet. There are three speakers from each panel (panel in this case is an alliance) come up to speak for 12 mins. What happens in PU elections Open House is something not to be missed cause if you are a sensible voter (like me) you'll find it to be utterly nonsense (and oddly that is the fun of it!!). It is one of the few places where you would find hordes of people screaming at the top of their voices. People will laugh/cheer/clap for every sentence spoken by the panel spokesperson. Actually it doesnt even have to be a sentence, it could be for a simple reason that the person next to you started clapping/cheering. And you will (at times) get to hear nice shayari(full of criticism against the opposite parties) by the political leaders... And this is no campaigning cause the audience is basically divided into two halves. A PUSU half and a SOPU half. So there is hardly anyone who needs any persuasion. In simple words an event not to be missed... just to witness the heights of insanity.

As the night draws nearer, the tension rises. Everyone now starts getting worried about how many votes they'll get. So in the evening all the party workers work at their respective tents ("Remember the safest place in PU: when I was in first year"). And what do they do? Take out list of all the students of PU, and message them/call them. Just to ensure that in the morning they get the maximum votes (And trust me it doesnt work). This effort continues overnight basically making the most out of the last 48 hours before the elections when Campaigning is not allowed.

Finally I realize how it all works. Basically a 1st or 2nd yr student is only expected to go and cast their vote... whereas the parties expect the 3rd/4th year students to make more and more people cast votes for the party.

Its getting late and I must go to sleep now cause tomorrow I have to act like a responsible student of PU. Great burden on my shoulders!! lol!!

Saturday, November 03, 2007

पेहली कामयाबी

So day before- the 30th I had my first event as the Campus Ambassador of Sun Microsystems. Nice start I'd say. Never did I expect so many people to come for the first event. It took me quite some time to make a 100-slide presentation which covered the introduction of What Open Source is and continuing to give a brief description of the Sun Open Source technologies. Well although it was supposed to be only an introduction, I did cover a lot about these things, thanks to help from all the various presentations at the induction program. Furthermore, an introduction to the Code For Freedom contest and specially to the OpenSolaris and NetBeans project. I was shocked to see the crowd, cause we really did not prepare for so many people. Even before the session had commenced the no of students had exceeded the number of chairs (we had made arrangements for about 80, and the turn up was over 100) and they were more than willing to just stand and be a part of the presentation. It was quite an interactive session cause the students were more open to me than they would have been if I were a teacher. What was most impressive is that even at the end of the 2 hour long session there were quite a few bright faces and they wanted to see a small demo on how to make a NetBeans plugin. And its a little difficult when you have only 8 pens as giveaways for such a large crowd. I guess I did a fairly good job by giving them to those who were most involved in the presentations. Anyways a good start, lets see how well my learning curve rises. And I'd like to thank the members of the Sun Club for their help during the event.

Moving to other things... Leopard has been introduced and after reading the Ars Technica review I feel really good for 2 things. Firstly that I know really what to expect from Leopard. Secondly I am feeling really great to be associated with technologies that are being imported into Mac OS X from Sun, namely DTrace and ZFS. You never know, even Zones might be on its way. Definitely there are some great things in OpenSolaris and adoption of some of them into Mac would surely improve the already top of the line product.

And FINALLY Panjab University is having its elections. After series of court cases against the party leaders and the political parties themselves finally matters have resolved and things are really bad here. Things have to conform to the guidelines set by the Lyngdoh Commission as ordered by the supreme court. Finally all those guys who have any standing reappears, or marks below 60 percent or attendance below 75% are not allowed to compete for elections. Uff... basically all those guys/gals who have given their heart and sole for the elections are out of it!! And most of the parties are having difficulties in finding any candidate who satisfies all the clauses of Lyngdoh Commission. I have heard that the parties have annouced in the Girls' Hostels that anyone having attendance above 75% is welcome to be a candidate for the post of Vice President. Basically no bright student is a part of politics and now the parties cannot do without them. This is the third time I am facing PU elections and everytime it brought in a new flavour with itself.

And finally... Its really unfair that M$ still enjoys monopoly over the software market.....

Edit: Some pictures shared... And download the presentation from here