Friday, November 26, 2010

The Digital Afterlife: Data is Immortal

Have you ever wondered that what would happen to the person’s profile if he/she dies? The information about any person, his/her Facebook profile or the Blogger account can be preserved for centuries to come. If the data isn’t physically removed, it will stay there forever.

Quite literally it means even if a person dies, he/she lives just like a ghost on the World Wide Web.

There was an interesting article in New York Times regarding a detailed overview of: Web Means the End of Forgetting. It throws light on the much discussed topic about why we can never forget things once they are put on the net.

With Facebook reaching the 500 million mark and with those over the age of 65 adopting Facebook faster than any other age group, the issue of what to do with the Facebook pages of those who have died is becoming a more important one. Imagine how you would feel if you get a notification from your late grandfather on Facebook inviting you to reconnect with him! And it happens with hundreds of people, who did not think of controlling the way their digital accounts would stay after they could handle them no more. Some social networking sites also claim to have tested software to search for members who have died, but the problem is that the software can be spoofed.

This situation leads us to think a proper management system for our digital assets. If we think of some means to tackle this problem, the only idea I get is to have a safe depository of all my user-names and passwords to the computer system as well as access to all the important accounts residing inside it and a legal procedure to give the rights to access that data to someone after us.

That sure sounds ridiculous, but I haven’t found another sound answer.

There has been some news as regards to some lawyers advocating the assignment of a “digital executor” for the purpose of carrying out our digital afterlife wishes. Who knows we might need something like that soon enough.

So, what do you think? There must be thousands of pages scattered across the net that are no longer accessed.

Is there any way to control this situation? Or will it grow to a saturation point? Have your say.

Article Prepared with help of Mrs Poonam/PGT/St. Angel's School for magazine. 

Mumbai - The City of Dreams! :)

It is not amongst the most beautiful cities of India. It is not even a place where life is relaxed, yet Mumbai attracts people like no other city of India. Mumbai is both the commercial and entertainment hub of India. It is the dream city to which people come from all parts of the country to fulfil their dreams of becoming ‘successful, famous and rich’.

I have visited several places but this city has something which attracts you. My own visit to Mumbai, though it had nothing to do with becoming successful, was full of anticipation. I was visiting to meet my elder brother and so had to stay there for sometime. In fact I have visited Mumbai several times after this trip and each time the experience was just overwhelming, though the first visit was to be remembered forever and that’s what is mentioned here. My expectation from Mumbai, like many others were sky high. However, I felt them crumbling down the moment I stepped out of the Airport. Nowhere could I see even the faintest glimpse of the image I had in mind of Mumbai. Being from delhi, the metropolitan look that I was hoping to see of Mumbai was grossly missing. The roads were narrow and the crowd sometimes became too much to handle. All through my way from Airport to home, I constantly peeped out of the cab to see the Mumbai of my dreams, but all in vain.

Fortunately, my disappointment from Mumbai ended very soon. Mumbai had so much to offer that the ‘look aspect’ really took a back seat in few days. Along with my brother, I visited the Gateway of India and nearby places.

I also visited Juhu beach and quiet a few lesser known beaches. Juhu was all lighted up and glittered beautifully in the evening. The surrounding was vibrant - the foodsstalls were full, the vendors were going around showcasing their items and the photographer were busy spotting and clicking tourists. We also played in water, felt the sand slipping from below our feet and got ourselves clicked.Visits to the Mahalaxmi Temple, Haji Ali, Marine Drive followed and made me more than happy. I could now see the religious as well as modern side of Mumbai. It was as if slowly Mumbai had started revealing its treasures to ward off my initial disappointment.

What I most enjoyed during my stay in Mumbai was the rains. Never before had I seen rainfall for 3 – 4 consecutive days with very little interval. It was true that I just couldn’t go out anywehere because of the rains but just watching the rainfall for so long was immensely enjoyable for me. Another thing which I enjoyed was travelling in local train.

Travelling by train gave me a first hand idea of life of the people in Mumbai. For them, local trains are a lifeline. Without these trains, life in Mumbai becomes crippled and I witnessed that myself when heavy rains seriously affected the running of trains and large number of people got stranded where they were.

Thankfully, the situation improved very soon and life got back to its normal self. Mumbai, after all, is known for its resilience and under no circumstance does it goes down. Infact, such a situation saw complete strangers coming together to bail out each other from difficult situations. I realised that it is this spirit of Mumbai that keeps it going despite all odds.

There were various other aspect of Mumbai that came to my notice during my stay in Mumbai. I wished to explore Mumbai more but had to cut short my trip because of certain reasons. I was surprised that I was feeling bad to leave a city which I did not like initially. Also, I knew I had to come back to know and understand Mumbai more. This is Mumbai, a city that never fails to charm an incoming visitor.
Mumbai I will keep coming back !!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Download Your Information on Facebook

Having a copy of your information — whether that is on Facebook or any other service on the web — is an important part of controlling what you share.
there is  a  link (maybe not so new for some of you) “Download Your Information” in Account Settings.

It is a tool that lets you download a copy of your information, including your photos and videos, posts on your wall, all of your messages, your friend list and other content you have shared on your profile. Within a zip file you will have access to your data in a simple, browseable manner.

After Clicking the Download button… Facebook will sent a confirmation mail at your email id that is registered with the Facebook (the one you use to login in into Facebook).

Its going to take a couple of Hours to generate the Archive……… (Took around an Hour in my case)
“Once you receive the email, you will have to re-enter your password and if you are using a public computer or one you do not use regularly, you may also have to solve a friend photo captcha or an SMS captcha via your mobile phone.”
Just click the link that you got in your Mail from Facebook…. and you’ll be forwarded to the download page… where you have to confirm your Facebook password to start the download…
After confirming your password, the download button appears, that gives information about the ZIP file i.e, the size of the file……
Now, some questions that you might be interested in:

what is included in the file?
Your file will include the following information:
  • Your profile information (e.g., your contact information, interests, groups)
  • Wall posts and content that you and your friends have posted to your profile
  • Photos and videos that you have uploaded to your account
  • Your friend list
  • Notes you have created
  • Events to which you have RSVP’d
  • Your sent and received messages
  • Any comments that you and your friends have made on your Wall posts, photos, and other profile content

"What are the benefits of downloading my information from Facebook?"

Having a copy of your information — whether that is on Facebook or any other service on the web — is an important part of controlling what you share.
In addition, downloading a copy of your information may come in handy if it only exists on Facebook. For example, you may have lost your mobile phone, which contained many photos you took using that phone. If you had uploaded those photos to Facebook, then downloading your information lets you get copies of them back on to your computer.

“Unfortunately, there is no way to individually select which data you would like to download. You will have to download your file in its entirety.”

Warning: The file that you’ll download contains sensitive information. You should keep it secure and take precautions when storing, sending or uploading it to any other services

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Why I Love Winter

Since Winter is approaching in Delhi and the chill is setting in,  I need to remind myself of some reasons to love winter.

You get to bundle up in those good warm clothes,coats, jackets and gloves.

When you wake up and see unexpected, heavy fog, love to drive in fog

Winter is often a peaceful time of the year, very calm and silent nights

The comfort of a cup of hot tea after you have been out in the cold.

Shining Sky and sunlight

Comfort foods such as steaming hot soup or Maggi noodles.

Shaadi Season......Lots of delicious food in there

Jingle bells.....Santa Claus Knocks the door....Christmas time

New Year Time

Sometimes, a winter landscape can seem like a magical fairytale.

The full moon looks far more beautiful in the winter.
Besides, there’s always the prospect of spring and summer.

Can India Build A Silicon Valley?

Before going further, I want to set my own definitions of Silicon Valley right. By Silicon Valley, I do not refer to a bunch of start-ups & multi-billion corporations providing services to the world with almost no innovation to touch the lives of common people. I specifically mean a bunch of start-ups & big corporations that rely heavily on innovation and research to produce world-class products, services and utilities. Even two decades after its foray into the world of Information Technology, it’s sad and surprising that India wasn’t able to come up with it’s own Google, Microsoft, Apple, FourSquare, Ebay and so on. I am not neglecting few of the startups that did – but remained mostly limited to specific regions or India. There are few start-ups that need time, however they are so scarce in number compared to the number of engineers work in the IT.
I believe in any country, start-ups are majorly responsible for bringing innovation and economic growth. For if a start-up is successful, it generates wealth & employment. I believe India has most of the the basic ingredients necessary for building its own silicon valley except the social acceptance of failure of entrepreneurs. There are thousands of talented entrepreneurs in India, with many Earth-Shattering start-up ideas working in Indian MNCs but they won’t quit their jobs to build start-ups on their ideas.
The reason behind this reluctance to work for star-ups or build their own start-ups comes from the social pressure – to settle early, to get married early and build your own home early; preferably by 30. If you are 25 and not earning money – you are treated as a failure and a social outcast. Many entrepreneurs cannot withstand this pressure and give up. What could have been then next Google just rusts inside the brains of these talented engineers as they continue their mundane coding jobs.
Can we build a society that can accept the failed entrepreneurs and treat them as heroes who have a wealth of experience of start-ups?  In India, where parents have a major say in their kid’s career path; can we teach them to allow their sons/daughters to take up entrepreneurship at least for 3 after they graduate? Can we motivate the budding entrepreneurs to actually give up campus recruitment or their current corporate jobs to follow their own ideas & dreams?
If yes, it won’t take us to build a silicon valley.

With inputs from Mrs Poonam & Mr. Rajesh Jain

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I Blog Too !!!

Why I Blog?
I started a blog out of a quiet eager sense of curiosity. After reading about this hing called “Blogger” in a technology column some days back, So finally my infatuation has made me to open a blog and at 12.25 AM, the 17 Nov, 2010 i am entering my first post late this night

 With the ever growing culture of writing blogs, I also decided (eventually) to mark my presence on the internet through this exciting new medium. (Although)I have few mail id’s , an extremelyconvenient facebook account , a yahoo chat id  and last but not the least the active subscriptions to many forums of my choice…With so much in hand I needed some prominent reason to start my blog..As I am….by nature….I don’t start the things that I can not manage, moreover I do not want to do injustice with any of the services offered ….

I had a discussion going on in my mind about the dilemma whether to start a blog or not at all…the first thing that I was in the favor was that its like my personal (or rather public) diary. It is the reflection of my thought in the internet mirror. Its the real ‘me’ in the virtual Web…I could not stop myself from getting the funny idea that “A time will come when a person’s biography will be nothing but the chronologically ordered pages of his blog.” . The next big question that held me was the subject about which I would start writing.

As you might have guessed and experienced as well, Human Mind does not hits the right spot when you are exactly searching for it…Its not like Mr. Google who finds millions of results with almost any keyword. After much hips and hops I finally decided to write whatever I thought about this blog thing So what you are reading right now is the outcome of the above discussion.

Now i proudly say "I BLOG TOO"