May 11, 2013

One versus Four

Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One

Galaxy S4 versus HTC One

No, this isn’t some odd fighting mismatch! This is our head-to-head of the HTC One and Samsung Galaxy S4. Two flagship devices pitted against one another. Who will come out on top?

Both these devices have been closely followed by fans for well over six months. And with good reason. The One represents a paradigm shift for HTC and their design philosophy (although some UI elements could have been improved further) whereas the S4 hopes to build on the mind-blowing success of the S3 and imbibe some good qualities of the Note II. It is also possible to consider the Sony Xperia Z for this match up, but it fell short on a wide range of parameters… including user anticipation! So here we go… Continue reading »

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Apr 27, 2013

Life in the Clouds

Cloud Storage

Cloud storage is a model of networked online storage where information is stored in a remote database instead of your computer’s hard drive and the internet provides the connection between your computer and the database. It is wonderful to have a cloud drive for backing up your important data and ensuring it’s available to you wherever and whenever you need it, but there are pros and cons to being dependent on cloud storage. While choices abound, there are some that do a better job than others. Here are five that you could try out. Continue reading »

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Apr 13, 2013

Television on Demand

APR4-iTunes

Heard of hulu.com? It’s a streaming TV service in the US. They make available TV shows online for small payments. It sounds innocuous enough, but it’s a revolution. And you are already part of it. In India, this was led by YouTube who first introduced us to on-demand video. Then came the pirates who recorded and put anything they could find on TV online. Then came the suits who figured this could be profitable and are now making money by the truckloads letting us see on the computer what we may be missing on TV. Continue reading »

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Oct 25, 2012

When charity comes calling

All of us, at one point or another, have been accosted by those selling charity. I am not being uncharitable in the alleged efforts of these people. I may not be the first to pay up, but when I see actual work happening and am convinced that my money is indeed being used for a cause, I will pay. What irks me, though, is when door-to-door salesmen of charity come calling and try to tug at your heartstrings hoping you will loosen your purse-strings!

A note to them all: It doesn’t work.

Why? Continue reading »

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Oct 17, 2012

Best waste of money?

The iPhone 5 is available for sale on Ebay.in. Considering it’s not yet officially launched in India, this has to be a smuggled piece. Nonetheless, at Rs 54,250 for the cheapest option, it seems a tad bit steep to me!

iPhone 5

iPhone 5 for sale on Ebay.in

I could think of a ton of better uses for this money. Would you spend 54k on a phone?

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Oct 16, 2012

What’s wrong with cricket?

I’m an avid cricket fan. But of late, the volume of matches has meant that it’s impossible to keep up with the game. Notably, the increase in T20 games and club games (thanks to IPL and CLT20). Tournaments with multiple teams are of course more exciting to watch because there is always a prize at the end of it. Whereas in bilateral series, the question that crops us is, “What’s the point?”

Football is a global game that thrives on the Club level. Because players move around and create interest in either their destination or origin countries. Cricket has managed this to some extent with County cricket previously, but the number of players from overseas countries (read India!) were always too few to elicit sustained interest. Yorkshire became a known name to young cricket lovers only when Tendulkar played for them for a year. Ask most fans (not the hardcore ones, of course) which county Murali Karthik plays for and chances are (despite his recent unsportsmanlike behaviour making the news), not many would know.

Continue reading »

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Oct 15, 2012

Like our politicians…

This turtle too passes waste through its mouth! Perhaps a seat in the parliament for it? No?

Turtle passes waste through mouth

via The Times of India.

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Oct 14, 2012

Inspiring CEO & Digital Marketing

Forbes India, in their latest issue, lists the Leadership Awards 2012. Of all the various winners, most inspiring for me was Nitin Paranjape of HUL. Not because he turned around a behemoth in 4 years or because he set it up for the future, but because at 49, he’s willing to learn continually.

Not too many CEOs, let alone those commanding an empire of over Rs 1.4 lakh crore (market cap) are willing to have a 25-year-old tutor. One who can teach them the ropes of digital marketing. Yes, most of them will hire a ton of managers to their bidding, but few will spend time and take the effort to understand “what their kids are talking about”.

Because by his own admission, he couldn’t understand the brave new world his children inhabit. What the hell are they doing spending all their time on social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter? In any case, what are these places all about?

Continue reading »

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Oct 10, 2012

Main bhi writer

Like every blogger worth his/her salt, I too aspire to be a published author. Not the self-published, e-book kinds, but a real, hard-cover or paperback kinds. That people pay to buy and read. And at the thought of which trees (among others) weep. Inspiration has come from many fronts. Such greats that were formerly bloggers are now published authors. They reside in London and globe-trot playing poker and such. Yes, their books have brought joy to many and money to some, and I too aspire to tread in their footsteps.

By the way, what did you, dear reader, make of the above paragraph? Sophisticated enough? Polished? Not too many grammatical errors? No spelling mistakes, Firefox assures me…

So I have dreamed up many topics with plots, characters, sub-plots and more. I have at least 5 book ideas in my head. I’m on the verge of turning schizophrenic with the number of characters swirling about in my head. Not to mention locations, locales and other such details that at times put a question in my mind as to my present whereabouts. So where is this killer book, you ask? In my head (pay attention!).

Continue reading »

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Oct 4, 2012

World T20 and India’s failures

India team World T20 Cricket

The has-beens? Image courtesy Firstpost.com

It’s amazing that a country with the most touted professional cricket league fails to make the semi-final three times in a row. As is being widely said now, the problem is with the selection. The captain is doing fine. But with the wrong tools, the best craftsmen can’t work their magic.

Yes, the current team is young and no less enthusiastic than the one which won the tournament in 2007. But there are also some passengers in the team on the basis of their reputation and not current form. Zaheer Khan, Virender Sehwag, Gautam Gambhir (despite being the winning captain of IPL 2012) and perhaps Rohit Sharma (more on promise than even reputation in his case!) deserve to be knocked out immediately. The purpose of the IPL was to nurture young talent (in addition, of course, to making money) and the best performers from this have not made it through to the national team. Manvinder Bisla, for example did well in 2012. And if Rohit Sharma can get so many chances, why not Robin Uthappa? Continue reading »

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