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Saturday, March 28, 2009

avast! is ready for 1 April; are you?

April 1st is a date often targeted by the creators of malware and this year will be no exception. There are currently a lot of reports in the media about potential new virus threats and speculation about the potential impact of new viruses such as the Conficker worm. However, provided your computer’s operating system and your avast! antivirus are up to date, the risk is very small and there is no need to be unduly concerned.
To ensure you are protected against any potential new malware threats, before March 31st you should make sure that your antivirus program and virus definitions are completely up-to-date and that you have installed all available Windows security updates. We recommend checking that avast! is set to update itself and the virus database automatically – to check this, right click your avast! a-ball in the bottom right corner of your screen, select “Program settings” and then “Update (Basic)”. Here you should make sure that the virus database is set to “automatic”.
Also, whenever you switch on your computer, make sure that avast! is actually running. Some viruses are designed to specifically target antivirus programs and to turn them off, however avast! contains strong self-defense which is designed to prevent this. If avast! is running, you should see the normal blue a-ball in the bottom right corner of your screen. If it is switched off, it will contain a circle with a red line through it.
And finally, make sure that you have the latest Windows security updates. In particular, the Conficker worm takes advantage of a Windows vulnerability which Microsoft fixed in late 2008. Users of Windows Vista or XP (SP2 and higher) should have had this update installed automatically.
Source: avast! news

Monday, March 23, 2009

Heavy traffic for Tata Nano - The people's car & the world's cheapest car

23-Mar-2009 will be considered as one of the big milestone in the history of India and Tata Motors, as it is launcing the world's cheapest car. The detailed specitifications of this car is available here. Booking amount for the Nano, the world’s cheapest car, can be done by just paying Rs 2,999 upfront while the rest can be secured by way of loan. The delivery of the first lot of Nano cars will begin in early July-2009. Applications for booking of the car would be available in 30,000 locations in 1,000 cities across India. State Bank of India has an exclusive tie up for providing finance for the Nano. The promise that has been made to sell the car at around Rs 1 lakh would be kept despite the fact that commodity prices had shot up, Tata said, adding that the fall in commodity prices now may provide some cushion. The first one-lakh customers will be selected by draw of lots from the bookings, he said, adding that those not allotted would have the option to retain their bookings.
Tata Motors, which is launching the ultra low-cost Nano car, plans to have a US model in the next three years. The United States has certain additional requirements that no other country needs and as result needs some redesign, Ratan Tata said at a news conference.
Nano, will be priced between Rs 1.34 lakh and Rs 1.85 lakh (ex-showroom Mumbai), although the car's claim to fame was its Rs one lakh tag. To book the Nano, customers will have to shell out Rs 95,000 for the base model BS II and III, Rs 1.2 lakh for the mid-range model and Rs 1.4 lakh for the top end all across the country.
Below is the Bangalore pricing details from Tata Motors website:

Today's launch event shooted up the web-site hits on company's official website ( which was developed within a short timeframe of 1.5 months. The entire portal has been built on open source technologies. The hasty software development without sufficient planning on Load Testing has caused the website to go down, with following error:

The prefix "nano-" derives from the Greek root 'nanos', meaning dwarf. "Nano" also means "small" in Gujarati, the native language of the Tata family, founders of the Tata Group.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Earth Hour: March 28, 2009 at 8.30 pm

Switch off your lights. Save the planet!
Earth Hour is a global movement by World Wildlife Fund to raise awareness about global warming and climate change. People from 900 cities in 80 countries, including many Indian cities, will be switching off their lights for one hour on March 28, 2009 at 8.30 pm.

You too can join this global movement and Vote Earth, by just switching off your inessential lights and appliances for one hour.

Earth Hour is a call to action for every individual, and every community - a call to stand up and take control of the future of our planet. Make your actions count!

Sign up now and support Earth!

Earth Hour 2009 Pictures from all around the world

Microsoft launches Internet Explore 8.0 Final Release

The final build of Internet Explorer 8 has been announced by Microsoft, and is now available for various platforms including Windows XP, Windows Server 2003, Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008. Users who want to grab it straight away can do so from Microsoft's Internet Explorer 8 Home Page. Alternatively, Microsoft will push IE8 out via Windows Update first as an optional download, and then via Automatic Updates at a later date. Administrators who want to prevent users from getting IE8 from Microsoft's update channels will want to check out the IE8 blocker toolkit.

Undo Send feature in GMail

I recollect using this feature from Microsoft Outlook earlier. GMail has introduced the "Undo Send" feature recently. This feature comes to help for those people who click on Send button and then realize some mistake in their email text (like forgetting an attachment). This feature can't pull back an email that's already gone; it just holds your message for five seconds so you have a chance to hit the panic button. And don't worry – if you close Gmail or your browser crashes in those few seconds, GMail will still send your message.

More Info at: GMail Official Blog.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Yahoo! Briefcase will be closing on 30-Mar-2009

The Yahoo! Briefcase service will be closing on March 30, 2009. You must download or delete your files by March 30, 2009. After this date, you will not be able to access your Yahoo! Briefcase account and your files will be deleted.
Why? Because, in a Web 2.0 world where Yahoo! Mail has unlimited storage and Flickr offers media sharing, users and services have outgrown what the Yahoo! Briefcase service can provide. As such, Yahoo! is closing Yahoo! Briefcase to focus our efforts elsewhere.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

BSNL Customer Care Initiatives

Open House Sessions, Adalat, Help Line Enquiries, Call Centre and Other Important Helplines.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Indian Rupee could soon get a Unique Symbol

Major currencies of the world e.g. US Dollar, Pound Sterling, Yen and the Euro have an Identification symbol. The Government of India also proposes to have a symbol for the Indian rupee to be selected through public competition. Accordingly, all Resident Indians (both Professional artists and Non-professionals) are hereby invited to participate in a Competition for design of the ‘Symbol for Indian Rupee’.

Submission of Entries:
Interested persons may send their entries, along with a bank draft of Rs.500/- (Rupees five hundred only) in favour of the Pay & Accounts Officer, Department of Economic Affairs, New Delhi, drawn on a scheduled commercial bank/nationalised bank at New Delhi as registration fee, to the Under Secretary (Currency), Department of Economic Affairs, North Block, New Delhi – 110 001 to reach him latest by 1300 hours on 15th April 2009. Entries received after the stipulated time shall not be entertained and returned unopened. The Department shall not be responsible for delay by postal service s, courier agencies etc. The entries can also be deposited personally at the Information & Facilitation Counter of the Department, near gate No. 8, North Block, New Delhi. The entries should be sent in a properly sealed envelope labelled “Entry for Symbol for the Indian Rupee”. The entry should be accompanied by a brief explanation of the Design and how it best symbolizes the Indian Rupee and also the bio-data of the applicant with a passport size photograph affixed on the top right hand corner. The guidelines for preparing entries, other conditions and selection process are available on the website of the Ministry of Finance.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

PHP Developers are highly satisfied!

A new survey from Evans Data of over 500 developers, asked questions in 12 different categories to see which dynamic languages they like best. The study asked about Ruby, Python, Perl, Java script, Flex and VB script and the overall crown went to PHP. Ruby placed second followed by Python and then Perl. The 12 categories ranked by Evans data were: Ease of Use, Exception handling, Extensibility, Maintainability / Readability, Cross-platform portability, Community, Availability of tools, Quality of tools, Performance, Memory management, Client side scripting and Security.

The study concluded that PHP was the best all around scripting language for web applications with a large community and lots of readily available tools. Ruby was the easiest to use and thus the most accessible, but suffers from performance problems and a tiny community, while Python showed itself to be the best suited for creating large and complex applications.

Languages in the survey included: Actionscript, Flex, Java Script, Microsoft F#, Windows Powershell, Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby and VB Script.

SBI proposes hardware tokens for additional layer of security

State Bank of India proposes to provide hardware tokens (see image) as an additional layer of security for Internet banking. A hardware token is a tamper proof device, similar to a USB. The token is assigned to a specific Internet banking user, and generates a unique one time authentication password to complete a transaction. They are conducing a survey on their Online Banking website, to check if the customer is interested to avail this additional security feature and also bear the one time cost of hardware token (Max Rs. 1000).