Web Culture

Google Toolbar v4 with Custom Buttons

I tried the Google toolbar v4 and added some custom buttons to it. It works pretty well and the API is straight forward. It required the icons to be encoded as base64. The link to encode the images in base64 is very useful.

When are we getting T4 for firefox?

Skype, Web Culture

Global Calling at Local Rates


Nik Cubrilovic at TecCrunch reported another cheap international calling service Rebtel. It provides a local number to both you and your friend overseas. Both the users call a local number and then the call is bridged over VOIP. Here is how it works:

You signup for the service and it gives a local number for you & another local number for your friend. You call the local number and it routes the call to your friend overseas. Your friend now hangs up and calls you back on the the other number (your friend’s local number) while you are still on the line. It is little inconvenient but it works and it is free. They charge $1 per week for unlimited calls but if you don’t call during a week, there is no charge for that week.

I tried it for London, but went back to SkypeIn as I already have a SkypeIn number for UK but I can see this service being useful for people who spend a lot of time on overseas calls. And I assume that down the road they would make this service easier (may be a premium service).

They still don’t have India includes in the list of countries to call & Tejas Patel mentioned after his calculations that it is still more costly to use Rebtel than Skype & Yahoo to call the countries that are not yet in the Rebtel’s list of 30 countries you can make free calls.

Microsoft SharePoint, Technology and Software

Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 Guides for IT-Pros

I had just heard again today that there isn’t enough good documentation on Planning, Deployment & Installation for MOSS 2007. Until recently, the best resource that I had come across was Arpan Shah’s Top 10 steps to ramp up on MOSS 2007 deployment.

Reading the SharePoint blogs today that I have bookmarked, I came across Patrick’s post on WSS v3 & MOSS 2006 Documentation.

It is always a pleasure to read Patricks blog and I find useful stuff at his posts all the time.

Blogosphere, Web Culture

Stiff asks, great programmers answer

Stiff , with the help of public accessible e-mail addresses asked 10 questions to a couple of great programmers. Here is the list of programmers he asked the questions:

Linus Torvalds – The Linux kernel author

Dave Thomas – Author of the „Pragmmatic Programmer”, „Programming Ruby” and other great books about programming. One can read his mainly programming-related thoughts here.

David Heinemeier Hansson – Author of the Rails Framework – the new hot web development framework. He has a weblog here.

Steve Yegge – Probably the least known from guys here, but also made one of the most interesting answers, has a popular weblog about programming. He is also the author of a game called „Wyvern”.

Peter Norvig – Research Director at Google, a well known Lisper, author of famous (in some circles at least) books about AI. See his homepage.

Guido Van Rossum – The Python language creator

James Gosling – The Java language creator

Tim Bray – One of the XML and Atom specifications author and a blogger too.

Interesting answers to the first question on how these programmers learnt programming shows that most of these learnt programming on their own thru books, playing with code etc and then some of these did enrol in a formal programming degree.

An answer from David Heinmeier Hansson, one of my favorite programmers and a great individual:

I learned programming by starting to put together my first web page in HTML. Then I wanted to make some dynamic pieces and picked up first ASP then PHP. After I already knew how to program, I then started on a joint computer science and business administration degree.

Blogosphere, Web Culture

Techcrunch Party at August Capital

Tech Crunch

Michael Arrnington has announced the next Techcrunch party is going to be held on Aug 18th at August Capital in Menlo Park, CA.

Look out for announcements and some Big surprises. At least First 500 persons to RSVP would get invitation. This is an open party & signup up here to RSVP. [Update: Now you need to post a comment in order to be on the invitation list, so post a comment, if you’d like to be at the party.]


Indian Government does it again.

People have still not forgot how Avnish Bajaj, CEO of Bazee.com (now eBay India) was arrested when a user uploaded a porn clip for sale on Bazee.com. Indian government knowing not what to do arrested Avnish and sent him to the custody for several days. Only after extreme pressure from within the country and outside could help his release from jail.

Now after Mumbai blasts, Indian government has banned appx 12 domains that posted content maligning India.

Officials defended the decision saying, “We would like those people to come forward who access these (the 12) radical websites and please explain to us what are they missing from their lives in the absence of these sites.”

Interestingly, The list include Blogger, Typepad & Geocities. Blogger.com alone is hosting millions of Indian blogs and bloggers all over the India are reporting their inability to access their own & other blogs.

Shivramvij has posted the interesting responses that he received from officials asking them to confirm/list the sites that have been blocked. Neha Mehta has links to many blogs that are raising the censorship issue with media and the government. They also have a group of bloggers raising voice against the censorship.