Monday, June 9, 2014

Moto X Kit Kat 4.4.3

Motorola has started rolling out the Kit Kat 4.4.3 to the Moto X, Moto G and Moto E phones. Considering that Google had only announced the release of Kit Kat 4.4.3 only on the 7 th of June, that was pretty quick! I got a notification on my Moto X on the 8th of June.

Here is the link to the change log

Here are some screen shots.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Transfer Videos and Music to your iPhone or iPad via Wifi without iTunes

The following method lets you transfer videos via WiFi onto your iOS device. Videos in most of the popular formats can be transferred and watched using this method. Media can be transferred from pretty much any device which has a fully functional internet browser - this includes Android phones, PCs and Macs.


  1. Connect your iPad and your PC/Mac/Android device to the same WiFi connection.
  2. Open the VLC app on your iOS device.
  3. Touch the VLC icon on the top left corner to open the Menu pane.
  4. Touch 'WiFi Upload' 

  6. N
ow copy and access the shown IP address in the internet browser on other device (PC/Mac/Phone) 

Enjoy your media on VLC now!!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Turn Safesearch off?

To start with, people looking for an  immediate solution can get the results they want by being more specific about their searches. For instance, if you are searching for 'human body', you might want to add a few extra keywords like 'naked', 'nude' etc.

I was wondering what happened to the Safesearch button on my Google search page. Then I stumbled on Google SafeSearch Changes Hit the U.K., Australia, New Zealand, and More [CONFIRMED] | WebProNews  and things seemed clear.

Well, it does seem sad that in essence Google has started censoring our search results, but I can understand why Google might think this is a good feature to add. In the earlier situation, one could change the Safesearch option between Strict,  Moderate and Off. While that sounds fine, it's possible that just before I sat at the computer, someone has changed the settings to Off. So when I search for a relatively safe term, I still get explicit results. I have gotten 'dirty' results this way even for the most unexpected terms, for instance 'mother'. Now this could serve a nightmare esp for parents of young kids. What happens when stuff like this pops up when your kid is 'Googling' for his history homework?

On the other hand, I'm not too happy about getting censored results. 'Censorship' just doesn't feel right. I cannot disagree when someone says they want to see ALL relevant results when they search for a term.

So there is one main concern on either side.

The Google side - We don't want explicit results popping out for search terms unless specifically searched for.

The Other side -  We want to see ALL results pertaining to a search term, no censorship.

The Solution?

Hmm, Google could have a Safesearch button that automatically toggles to ON everytime a new search window opens. When clicked it would turn OFF but only for that window. When the window is closed, Safesearch is back to ON.

That way Google can have a 'safe' search  by default and the search purists can have a truly relevant search when they want it. I think that sounds good.

The question does arise if kids will not use this method too but for that matter, if they wanted to find stuff they still can, even with the existing system. Lets see if they get this done, or maybe even something smarter.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Posters - World Environment Day : Green Economy

Some posters about Green economy and World Environment Day in general.

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Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Why I bought the Archos Vision and not the iPod Nano..

Well, to start with, the Nano costs a bomb. This was probably the most important reason. At less than a third of the price of the Nano, the Archos Vision 24c is a lot more affordable. I have never been much of an Apple fan. While I do appreciate the quality of their products, I've always thought of them as overpriced, exclusive products (sorry, all you diehard fans!).

Flashback - At a time when babies would learn to say "I poo'd" before they said iPod, Archos had come up with the first of what has now come to be known as the PMP (portable media player). It was the Archos Jukebox Multimedia. By today's standards, the Jukebox multimedia had humble specifications but it was nothing short of revolutionary in those days -  a 1.5" screen that could display photos and videos, along with a 20GB hard disk. This was in the early 2000s and as a geeky kid, I would pore over PC magazines, drooling over this, amongst other coveted gadgets. It was the stuff of dreams - to be able to carry thousands of songs in a handheld device (no matter how bulky). This was at the time when the Walkman was the only portable music one had access to here, even the CDman was a luxury that few had. So, the name Archos brings those memories back and when I think that I own an Archos now, an involuntary smile creeps onto my face :) There's the second reason.

Then there are the other reasons
--The Nano has to use iTunes - I find it extremely annoying that one needs this software to get media onto a PMP, and that you just cant recognise the tracks when you plug the ipod in as a removable device in your PC. Compared to this, I enjoy the glory of drag n drop on the Archos Vision. The player also has an option through which the folder structure can be seen, in case you want to search for a file that way.
--The Nano has a smaller screen
--The Nano cannot play videos

While most people in India may not have heard of the brand called Archos, abroad they are a valid competitor, although perhaps not amongst the top contenders today. I have had this device for over a week now and I have found that it is not uncommon for people to set their eyes upon it and wisely remark "Ah, Chinese".

The Nano does have many features that the Vision lacks such as accelerometer, touchscreen, et al but at the price point, I really cannot complain. Finally it comes down to that -  I chose the Archos Vision for its sheer value for money - at Rs 2633 its a great deal, if not a steal. I have been rather satisfied with this PMP so far. I'm planning to post a more detailed review after some more use.

Meanwhile if you may be interested in buying -

A word of warning though - the bundled earphones are trash. Get a pair of decent earphones from elsewhere.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Flipping Indian Mp3s the Legal Way

Just today I was pleasantly surprised to notice two new categories in Flipkart - 'flyte The Digital Store' and MP3 Downloads. We should probably have seen this coming, considering the fact that Flipkart has recently been foraying into newer segments including Computer Peripherals. I decided to try buying some music on the service and here is my review after the procedure.

There seems to be a large collection Indian Music - Bollywood and Regional cinema as well as Music Albums in various languages. There is also an International section with many different genres listed. It would be interesting to see what the Indian market makes about this sudden access to Legal Bollywood MP3 and other music on Flipkart.

Music Categories

Note that there is a new Cart called 'Digital Cart' apart from the regular cart. While currently the only digital downloads may be MP3 files, the 'flyte' Digital Store seems to suggest that a slew of other Digital media downloads is on the cards for Flipkart. Music can be downloaded as entire albums or as individual songs. In most cases it seems to be slightly more economical to buy the entire album, whereas in some cases, strangely, it turns out cheaper to buy the songs separately! eg. MTV India Coke Studio Ep 1. Also notable is that certain songs may be priced higher, within the same album, as in the case of Kaminey below.

              Balabhaskar                                     Coke Studio                                   Kaminey                                       Rudaali

The payment process is the same as other products on Flipkart. On successful payment the songs can be downloaded from the 'MP3 Library', which shows up at the top right corner of the flyte Digital Store page. I bought one song, and the Library showed '4 left' under the download tab.Every song one buys can be downloaded upto 4 times, which means you don't have to worry too much about losing the purchase if the net connection gives up on you in the middle of the download. Also you can directly download the song onto multiple devices.

The songs are in DRM free Mp3 format. There are options to download it in 64, 128 or 312kbps formats. Downloads can also be done after installing the 'Flyte Download Manager' which makes its easier to manage downloads, with options to pause/resume downloads. Flipkart offers a preview option that can be streamed before buying the song. It would be interesting to see how the Indian customer base will take up these new offerings, now that sites like Flipkart, Infibeam and the like have gotten increasingly popular for other products. Perhaps this may also help the music industry recover some of the revenue that is currently lost through online piracy.

Note: 'Currently purchases can be done only within the territory of India' says the flyte help FAQ section. It is probable that people from other countries can buy music using a billing address in India.

flyte Digital Store
Flyte Download Manager

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

NID website Hacked!?

The website of the National Institute of Design has apparently been hacked by the Albanian group Kosova Defacer Group(KDG). The website displayed the now iconic Guy Fawkes mask from V for Vendetta, along with the KDG's greet messsage. As to what set this off, there has been no clear indication.