Showing posts from 2012

get into free sites without registering

This post is taken from an issue of PCWorld of 2009, probably March. I think its relevance, today, is more than ever. So here it is, to save you tons of hassles:
Are you tired of having to register on a free website just to read a news article or view some pictures of your relatives? Rather than registering on such sites (and risking a barrage of annoying spam), many people forget about the news item or put off seeing how their nieces and nephews are doing until their next holiday.

But I have an easy way to get members-only content without enduring the hassle of signing up for an account. Whenever family and friends send me links to registration-required sites, I turn to BugMeNot ( to slip past most of these requirements. BugMeNot is a free site that stockpiles user-generated account log-ins and passwords so that users don’t have to provide their own personal info.
Go to the BugMeNot website and type in the URL of the site that you’d like to log in to. BugMeNot will return…

ode to the nice guys

This rant was originally written for the Wharton Undergraduate Journal.
This is a tribute to the nice guys. The nice guys that finish last, that never become more than friends, that endure hours of whining and bitching about what assholes guys are, while disproving the very point. This is dedicated to those guys who always provide a shoulder to lean on but restrain themselves to tentative hugs, those guys who hold open doors and give reassuring pats on the back and sit patiently outside the changing room at department stores. This is in honor of the guys that obligingly reiterate how cute/beautiful/smart/funny/sexy their female friends are at the appropriate moment, because they know most girls need that litany of support. This is in honor of the guys with open minds, with laid-back attitudes, with honest concern. This is in honor of the guys who respect a girl’s every facet, from her privacy to her theology to her clothing style.
This is for the guys who escort their drunk, bewildere…

one poem that makes your english better

If you can pronounce every word in this poem correctly, you will be speaking English better than 90% of the native English speakers in the world.
Gerard Nolst Trenité - The Chaos (1922) Dearest creature in creation
Studying English pronunciation,
I will teach you in my verse
Sounds like corpsecorpshorse and worse.
I will keep you, Susybusy,
Make your head with heat grow dizzy;
Tear in eye, your dress you'll tear;
Queer, fair seerhear my prayer.
Pray, console your loving poet,
Make my coat look new, dear, sewit!
Just compare hearthear and heard,
Dies and dietlord and word.
Sword and swardretain and Britain
(Mind the latter how it's written).
Made has not the sound of bade,
Say-saidpay-paidlaid but plaid.
Now I surely will not plague you
With such words as vague and ague,
But be careful how you speak,
Say: gush, bush, steak, streak, break, bleak ,
Previous, precious, fuchsia, via
Recipe, pipe, studding-sail, choir;
Wovenovenhow and low,
Say, ex…

the beauty of mathematics

These are some of the hidden gems of mathematics. Look at the way in which numbers interact!

solar-powered hornets

The oriental hornet, Vespa orientalis, is more active during the day, and tends to become even more active as the temperature rises. And scientists have discovered the reason: the hornets are solar-powered. It turns out that the distinct yellow stripe on the hornet's abdomen is actually full of tiny protrusions that gather sunlight and harness it for energy.
The insect also features a special pigment, called xanthopterin, that helps with the process. Xanthopterin works as a light-harvesting molecule transforming light into electrical energy. Wasps and hornets tend to be more active during the morning, and this research explains why the oriental hornet is different: it stays out during the day because there's more sun.  - Andrew Webster.

speed up file copying in windows

In Windows sometimes it can be sluggish while copying files to pen drives, external drives and and network drives. To make things better, use applications such as TeraCopy, FastCopy or Super-Copier. These contain features seriously lacking in Windows copy, those that many people wished existed as native features of Windows Explorer. They will do the job much faster, and they contain pause and resume transfers features, which might come in really handy at times.

33 ways to stay creative

The original source of this work could not be pin-pionted as there are a number of copies of this on multiple sites. However, this was most probably done by Frederik Frede.

what is a scareware

Scareware is a type of malware designed to trick victims into purchasing and downloading useless and potentially dangerous software.Scareware, which generates pop-ups that resemble Windows system messages, usually purports to be antivirus or antispyware software, a firewall application or a registry cleaner. The messages typically say that a large number of problems -- such as infected files -- have been found on the computer and the user is prompted to purchase software to fix the problems. In reality, no problems were detected and the suggested software purchase may actually contain real malware. If the user falls for the scam, he will lose the money he paid for the useless software and he may also make his computer unusable. Frequently, the message window has a clickjacking feature that takes the user to the attacker's Web site or initiates a malware download if the user clicks "Cancel" or the "X" to close the window.If you encounter a suspicious pop-up, you…

mapping man-made modifications

A lot of changes are happening to our planet each day - for example, look at this five-second time-lapse to see the expansion of Dubai from 1984 to 2012. Hit the Play button to begin after it loads.

This amazing visual data was taken from Google Earth Engine, a platform to quantify differences on the Earth's surface. As given on the site,

"Google Earth Engine brings together the world's satellite imagery — trillions of scientific measurements dating back almost 40 years — and makes it available online with tools for scientists, independent researchers, and nations to mine this massive warehouse of data to detect changes, map trends and quantify differences on the Earth's surface. Applications include: detecting deforestation, classifying land cover, estimating forest biomass and carbon, and mapping the world’s roadless areas."

On the site there are more examples, such as the Amazon Deforestation, Growth of Las Vegas and Saudi Arabia Irrigation among others. Ther…

impressively creative cpu mods

In an age when desktop computers are already gathering dust on top of desks all over the world; in a time when laptops, too, are gradually being considered a secondary device in favour of tablets – I present you some insanely creative CPU modifications (*from some old pictures lying around in my folders). These must be from around 2004, 2005 – it is hard to remember; but certainly these are impressive mods – kudos to the creators.These machines were probably 1 Gig RAM with 1700 MHz processor but the web, too, was 1.0; and today while the world is impatiently waiting for scrolls to replace tablet computers, these CPU mods silently echo an era that just passed us by. Yes, things were slow back then, but there was a charm to the sound of 28.8K modems loudly connecting to the Internet. Back then, these mods were some of the best things you saw for a whole week! Technorati Tags: ,,,,,,,

retroarch emulator for classic consoles

Ever wanted to play the classic DOS game “Digger” or “Dave” on your Android? Or do you want to play “Prince of Persia I” from the nineties? Well, RetroArch has come to the rescue. According to the developers, RetroArch emulates the following platforms with more additions in the coming days – PS3, XBox 360, Wii, Android, iOS, Blackberry and GameBoy among others. Currently, RetroArch is a highly versatile cross-platform portability standard. Technorati Tags: ,,,,,,,,,

predictions for the next century

Here are predictions by Popular Mechanics for the coming century (2012 A.D. to 2122 A.D.). Some of the interesting ones are given below:2012 – 2022People will be fluent in every language. With DARPA and Google racing to perfect instant translation, it won't be long until your cellphone speaks Swahili on your behalf.Scrolls will replace tablets. Researchers have already reproduced words and images on thin plastic digital displays. If they want those displays to compete with the iPad, they need to fine-tune the color and refine the screens so you can put your feet up and watch LeBron throw down on YouTube.Your clothes will clean themselves too. Engineers in China have developed a titanium dioxide coating that helps cotton shed stains and eliminate odor-producing bacteria. To revive your lucky shirt after a night of poker, you need only step into the sun.2023 – 2062All 130 million books on the planet will be digitized. In 2010 Google planned to complete the job by decade's end, b…

the top 20 albums of all time

With all the artists in the world, and all the songs out there it is indeed difficult to select the top twenty albums of all time. So, Yahoo in 2008 undertook this difficult job and after enough calculations, finally came up with the list. Here it is:20. Faith - George Michael
19. Appetite For Destruction - Guns N' Roses
18. Purple Rain - Prince
17. Houses Of The Holy - Led Zeppelin
16. Born In The U.S.A. - Bruce Springsteen
15. Nevermind - Nirvana
14. Van Halen - Van Halen
13. Rumours - Fleetwood Mac
12. The Wall - Pink Floyd
11. The Joshua Tree - U2
10. Metallica - Metallica
09. Led Zeppelin - Led Zeppelin
08. Hotel California - Eagles
07. The White Album - The Beatles
06. Led Zeppelin IV - Led Zeppelin
05. Abbey Road - The Beatles
04. Physical Graffiti - Led Zeppelin
03. Thriller - Michael Jackson
02. Dark Side Of The Moon - Pink Floyd
01. Songs In The Key Of Life - Stevie WonderWhat is your favourite song, artist or album? Technorati Tags: ,,,

man invents robot girl-friend, wants to make her wife

Some people have super-intelligence that they squander on the couch eating Doritos and watching "Weird Science" on TBS. Other people, like 33-year-old inventor Le Trung, take that potential and push it to reach glorious new heights by making their own robot girlfriend. Aiko, Lee's robotic companion, is a math genius who handles Le's accounts and can speak 13,000 different sentences in English and Japanese. She has enviable measurements and performs simple household tasks and cleaning. Unlike the similar-looking love dolls, Aiko is not manufactured for sex, although according to Le she could be "tweaked" to become a sexual partner. "Her software could be redesigned to simulate her having an orgasm and reacting to touch as if she is playing hard to get or being straight to the point," he said. A child genius, Le devoted his considerable brainpower and all of his life savings on perfecting the fembot, who he says draws mixed reactions. "Women ar…

carbon footprint of e-readers higher than print

Digital delivery of content for e-readers is a rapidly expanding market. Many assume that, because trees aren't being cut down and used to manufacture paper for books, e-readers (including the Kindle, Nook, iPad, and the like) are a greener way to read books and magazines. But a broader look at the use of these devices that includes the life-cycle of the e-readers themselves paints a much bleaker picture about how green they really are.The article first looks at the carbon emissions for an average adult reader who reads 6.5 books per year. Paperback books have a footprint of 26 kilograms (over 57 pounds) of CO2, as compared to just under 70 grams (about 0.15 pounds) for the e-reader. But the tables are turned drastically when the carbon footprint of the reader is added in. The carbon footprint for this average reader is almost identical (130 kilograms or 285 pounds) when expanded over 5 years.But how many people still use 5-year old electronic devices? Assuming a 2-year replacemen…

time for a little japanese

Manga, giant robots and robotics in general, not-so-common cultures, ideas, ideas and ideas; Tokyo overdrive, Shinkansen, ofuro, electronics, futuristic sub-cultures, cubic watermelons and insatiable hunger for design. If you love these, you'll probably love Japan. Here are a couple of sites that provide you content from Land of the Rising Sun:Tokyo Mango - Everything you ever wanted to know about the birth city of Godzilla, Gundam, All-You-Can-Eat Shabu Shabu, Panty vending machines.Kirai - A blog about Japan written by a Spanish geek in Tokyo.Japander - Celebrity News from Japan.Tokyo Flash - Unique Japanese watches.While you’re at it, check out cubic watermelons that Japanese farmers have been growing for the past twelve years. Technorati Tags: ,,,,,,,,,

desiderata by max ehrmann

Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexatious to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as th…

pleasure for the eyes

Also called sight gags. This site has a huge collection of funny photos, audio, photo and the like. For instance, here’s an extremely eager Irish girl trying to demolish her school. Listen.These are some good audio gags, visual gags, jokes and many more to keep you merrily occupied for a lonely afternoon. Technorati Tags: ,,,,,,,,,

predictions for the year 2000

The 1900 December issue of The Ladies Home Journal published an article by John Elfreth Watkins, Jr. listing some predictions for the year 2000 – exactly a hundred years into the future. A few interesting ones are shortlisted below:Prediction #4: There Will Be No Street Cars in Our Large Cities. All hurry traffic will be below or high above ground when brought within city limits. In most cities it will be confined to broad subways or tunnels, well lighted and well ventilated, or to high trestles with “moving-sidewalk” stairways leading to the top. These underground or overhead streets will teem with capacious automobile passenger coaches and freight with cushioned wheels. Subways or trestles will be reserved for express trains.  Cities, therefore, will be free from all noises.Prediction #5: Trains will run two miles a minute, normally; express trains one hundred and fifty miles an hour. To go from New York to San Francisco will take a day and a night by fast express.  There will be ci…

automatically generate your expenditure bills

Ok. This one is not for real. But this one is definitely for a little fun to do with that extra money you already spent, for which you want receipts to stay out of trouble. So load the page here. Then put the amount you want to spend. It’ll do the rest. As for me I spent some $234 in the restaurant, that I shouldn’t have spent; and later I generated some bills, the snippets of which are shown here.This tool was in fact, built by Maloney & Porcelli restaurant, probably as a promotion for their online reservation. It says in their homepage,Now you can eat at Maloney & Porcelli as often as you like and never worry about your expense report raising any eyebrows. Simply type in your bill total below and the expense report generator will do the rest.So next time you have some spare money that you’ve already spent, just remember the figure you spent and head to this amazing expenditure bills generator. Technorati Tags: ,,

the times they are a-changin’

With thanks and praise for Bob Dylan, ladies and gentlemen, The Times They Are A-Changing:Come gather 'round people, wherever you roam
And admit that the waters around you have grown
And accept it that soon you'll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you is worth savin'
Then you better start swimmin' or you'll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin'.
Come writers and critics, who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide the chance won't come again
And don't speak too soon for the wheel's still in spin
And there's no tellin' who that it's namin'
For the loser now will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin'.
Come senators, congressmen, please heed the call
Don't stand in the doorway, don't block up the hall
For he that gets hurt will be he who has stalled
There's a battle outside and it is ragin'
It'll soon shake your windows and rattle your walls
For the times they are a-changin'.
Come mothe…

black toothpaste is healthy & refreshing

Last week a friend asked me in the morning if I had ever used black toothpaste. Since I had never even seen black toothpaste, I notified of my ignorance towards such exotic commodity; and later out of curiosity I did a search on the Internet. No wonder I did find it in Japan, a place of varied and exotic ideas! It seems that Kobayashi Seiyaku, a pharmaceutical company has been selling black Sumigaki toothpaste since 2003.It turns out that Sumigaki toothpaste is made primarily out of charcoal - or carbon, that effectively helps in removing plaque, eliminates bad-breath, prevents tooth-decay and stops cavity; and the mint flavour refreshes your mouth. Besides, the carbon present in the charcoal actively whitens your teeth. Its chemical composition is that of water, phosphoric acid, charcoal, glycerin, cellulose, and a few other compounds.After nine years, this toothpaste is still a hit in many countries, and the only reason is that Sumigaki has been able to interpret black as a colour o…

identify a single voice among the crowd

Professional footballers beware: the argument you are having with your coach could soon be overheard even within the cacophony of a packed stadium. A new microphone system allows broadcasters to zoom in on sounds as well as sights, to pick out a single conversation. Physicists Morgan Kjølerbakken and Vibeke Jahr, formerly at the University of Oslo, Norway, were working on sonar technology when they came up with the idea for what they call a supermicrophone, now dubbed the AudioScope. The device is made up of around 300 microphones arranged in a fixed circular array above the sports ground. They are used in conjunction with a wide-angle camera that can zoom in to any position on the pitch. Because the camera is also fixed, it can be calibrated to zoom in to any location within its range. The AudioScope software then calculates the time it would take for sound emanating from that point to reach each microphone in the circular array, and digitally corrects each audio feed to synchronis…

a very interesting little old lady

A little old lady goes to the doctor in the city, and says, “Doctor I have this problem with gas, but it doesn’t bother me too much… my farts never smell, and they’re always quiet. But I’ve been doing it very often.”The doctor asks her to explain more, and the old lady says, “In fact, I’ve farted at least twenty times since I’ve been here in your office. You probably didn’t know I was farting because they don’t smell and they’re silent.”The doctor says, “I see, take these pills and come back to see me next week.” The next week the lady comes back. “Doctor,” she says, “I don’t know what the heck you gave me, but now may farts… although still silent… sink terribly.”The doctor says, “Good!!! Now that we’ve cleared up you sinuses, let’s work on your hearing.” Technorati Tags: ,,,,,,,,,

new uses for your old ipad

Here are some thoughts on why you can stick to your iPad 2 for the time being and not hurry to buy the new iPad immediately.Now that the third generation new iPad is here, it definitely makes the iPad 2 look clumsy. After all, the new iPad has almost double the amount the RAM, an improved processor, a visually dynamic retina display and twice the screen resolution. No doubt the iPad 2 is out of show. But is it really? Although a step older, the iPad 2 is still one of the best media-consumption devices in the market. It still has a considerable amount of processing power for your applications. It still has great functions. Here are some tasks for which iPad was created in the first place:Reading Your Books: You can read all your books and your comics, too. Comics on iPad are great; retina display or not.Listening to Your Songs: You don’t really need a retina display to listen to your songs, do you?Watching Videos: HD videos can surely benefit from a retina display, but seriously, are y…

your amazing ‘pi’ day


solving the world’s plastic problem

A group of students and professors from Yale University have found a fungi in the Amazon rainforest that can degrade and utilize the common plastic polyurethane (PUR). As part of the university’s Rainforest Expedition and Laboratory educational program, designed to engage undergraduate students in discovery-based research, the group searched for plants and cultured the micro-organisms within their tissue.Several active organisms were identified, including two distinct isolates of Pestalotiopsis microspora with the ability to efficiently degrade and utilize PUR as the sole carbon source when grown anaerobically, a unique observation among reported PUR biodegradation activities.Polyurethane is a big part of our mounting waste problem and this is a new possible solution for managing it. The fungi can survive on polyurethane alone and is uniquely able to do so in an oxygen-free environment. The Yale University team has published their findings in the article Biodegradation of Polyester Po…

the symphony of life

This short piece of writing is dedicated to all you leaplings – “You’re Special”.To live content with small means.
To seek elegance rather than luxury,
    and refinement rather than fashion.
To be worthy not respectable,
    and wealthy not rich.
To study hard, think quietly, talk gently,
    act frankly, to listen to stars, birds, babes,
    and sages with open heart, to bear all cheerfully,
    do all bravely, await occasions, hurry never.
In a word, to let the spiritual,
    unbidden and unconscious,
    grow up through the common.
This is to be my symphony.- William Ellery Channing Technorati Tags: ,,,,,,,,,

open password protected pdf files

You are in a hurry. You need to open this important PDF file – one that is very much essential to  you. You open it, but immediately you are given a dialog box, asking for the password. Sadly, you don’t have it. End of story.Enter Swiss Knife of PDF. This site can help you. All you need to do is to upload the file you want to open; and it does the rest. That easy.If you scroll down below, there are affiliate sites that have many other functionalities you require from your everyday PDF file. Technorati Tags: ,,,,,,,,,

artificial leaf makes fuel from sunlight

The artificial leaf, a device that can harness sunlight to split water into hydrogen and oxygen without needing any external connections, have been developed by a team led by MIT professor Daniel Nocera. Like living leaves, they can convert the energy of sunlight directly into storable chemical form which can be used later as an energy source.The device is in fact a silicon solar cell with different catalytic materials bonded onto its two sides; needing no external wires or control circuits to operate. Simply placed in a container of water and exposed to sunlight, it quickly begins to generate streams of bubbles: oxygen bubbles from one side and hydrogen bubbles from the other. If placed in a container that has a barrier to separate the two sides, the two streams of bubbles can be collected and stored, and used later to deliver power: for example, by feeding them into a fuel cell that combines them once again into water while delivering an electric current.Nocera sees a future in whic…

the forty-eight laws of power

Put forward by Robert Greene in a book, here are some timeless laws that powerful people have always adopted.Never outshine the master ... Never put too much trust in friends; learn how to use enemies. Conceal your intentions. Always say less than necessary. So much depends on reputation. Guard it with your life. Court attention at all costs. Get others to do the work for you, but always take the credit. Make other people come to you; use bait if necessary. Win through your actions, never through argument. Infection: avoid the unhappy and unlucky. Learn to keep people dependent on you. Use selective honesty and generosity to disarm your victim. When asking for help, appeal to people's self-interests, never to their mercy or gratitude. Pose as a friend, work as a spy. Crush your enemy totally. Use absence to increase respect and honor. Keep others in suspended terror: cultivate an air of unpredictability. Do not build fortresses to protect yourself. Isolation is da…