Monday, May 04, 2009

Bookmark your GMail Messages

I recently discovered you can bookmark you GMail messages. You may ask why you'd ever need to do this. Suppose you are looking for a specific email which is buried in your GMail inbox (which maybe 45% full!). When you find and open the message, the URL in your browser URL bar is unique to the email, and it can be saved as a bookmark. Later when you want to open the same message again, just open the bookmark you saved.
I think I'll find this useful when I get receipts for things I buy on the web. The receipts usually have a link to tracking packages or order status. I can bookmark the email making it easier for me to check later -- Beats having to do a search again.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

How to Use Twitlet from the iPhone

Every now and then when I am browsing through websites on my iPhone, I have felt like Tweeting the website or the webpage link in a Twitter post. Its very easy to do this from your desktop via numerous tools - TweetDeck, Twitter website, etc. But on the phone, the only way to send a link to Twitter has been via SMS. But with no cut/paste in the iPhone (at least so far), I just didn't know of a way to send a link to Twitter without using SMS.
On the desktop, I have found the Twitlet bookmarklet to be the fastest way to tweet a link. But I tried it on the iPhone - it works like a champ. I didn't know earlier (and many probably still don't know) that some bookmarklets work on the iPhone browser too.

So try the Twitlet bookmarklet on the iPhone. 
Follow the following steps:
  1. Create a Twitlet Bookmarklet with your Twitter account info in your Safari browser on your laptop/desktop computer which you use to sync your iPhone. 
  2. In iTunes, in your Device page, under the Info tab, select Sync bookmarks with Safari.
  3. Sync your iPhone. 
  4. Now, when you are browsing on the iPhone, and you come across a webpage you want to tweet, simply open your bookmarks and select the Twitlet bookmark. 
  5. A popup will show where you can tweet the page using the Twitlet. Even the #this syntax works to include the URL 
For your convenience I am including a screenshot of the Twitlet bookmarklet in action in the iPhone. 

Readability Bookmarklet Makes Reading a Clean Experience

If you are like me, you find your favorite websites or blogs more and more cluttered each day. I usually find articles and news items in websites like CNN, or blogs in a slender column on the left of the browser page, with a smattering of ads, links, flash widgets, Google ads, and other such annoyances all over the body of the article and to the right of the article. 

The Readability Bookmarklet has taken care of this headache for me. Save this bookmarklet in your browser link bar and click it when you want your reading to be a "clean" experience. It simply removes the clutter around the main body text you want to read, changes to font to a larger, easily readable one, and provides a clean white background. I am not kidding, it makes a world of a difference. And not to forget, its a much cleaner format should you decide to print the article too. (Added benefit, you might save some trees by not printing the random junk a.k.a. ads, and banners etc)

You can customize your bookmarklet to show you your article in any of the following formats: Newspaper, eBook, Novel, and Terminal. It allows you to select your text size, and the margin widths. I suggest you check out the Readability experiment website, the video within, and follow through to the bookmarklet setup page. You wont regret it. 

And now to show you an example, I am uploading a screen shot of the browser with a news article open on The first picture is the regular webpage. The second one shows what the Readability Bookmarklet does to enhance your reading experience. 



Thursday, February 12, 2009

Thursday, December 18, 2008

At the first sign of bad economy

On a recent US Airways flight, I noticed this when I lowered the tray table. You know the airlines are not doing well when they have started making money off of the tray tables with commercial ads. Not to mention the $2 I had to pay for a can of coke. Peanuts don't come with your drink.
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Sunday, November 09, 2008

Speeches left me speechless

The election night speeches left me speechless...both of them. I thought, like many, McCain's speech was very well balanced, and he left on a gracious note. I thought Obama's speech was, as expected, perfect. Nothing less was expected. For my own convenience, should I feel the need to see them again, I am posting both the speeches order.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Fastest Browser: TheWorld is Quite Enough

A hardly known browser TheWorld has impressed me. Frustrated with the sluggish memory hogging Firefox, I tried quite a few browsers out there. I talked about Safari for Windows before and thought it was quite fast. And now we have Google's Chrome which I think is fast too. But quite a few months ago, I chanced upon TheWorld browser, which I continue to use despite all the other mainstream browsers. This Chinese browser uses the IE engine, is extremely small in size, offers tabbed browsing and a no extra frills browsing experience, really really fast. One big advantage for me is when I use it at work, all the Intranet websites that only IE compliant dont have a problem showing up in TheWorld browser. Now the only warning is, it is based on IE 6.0 so some websites (rarely) don't show up properly, but if you want a fast browsing experience (yes, sometimes faster than Firefox, Chrome, Safari, and IE), without a large install file (there is a no-install version too) try it out. Did I mention, it opens on my machine within a second.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Finally a Speakerphone That Works - Motorokr T505

I vote Bluetooth as one of the most bothersome consumer wireless protocols to date. Yes, some may argue there may have been others, but none have really caused as much frustration for me as the damn Bluetooth headset for my cellphone.

I used one for almost a year with all the irritations that came with it - Needed to charge it using a tiny charger tip that was unique to the device, people on the other end could not hear me when the battery was low, the thing would not fit in my ear properly, and always had the nagging feeling a device transmitting at 2.4GHz almost half inserted into my brain was doing a better job at cooking my brain!

Recently, with some of my team members at work situated in Ireland, morning conference calls have been plenty. And of course, they have to coincide with my commute to work (yes, I know, those who know me point out its not really a "morning" commute!). Having given up on BT headsets, I reverted back to the old faithful, yet unfitting-in-my-tiny-ears wired headset that came with my Blackberry. But the wire dropping down the side of my face, and getting entangled with the rest of the wires in my car was still irritating. Ok, enough background. I have now found, bought, used, and tested the perfect device for my car. The Motorokr T505 Bluetooth Speakerphone. I vote this to be one of the must-haves for gadget fiends out there. This thing looks like a space-age garage door opener, clips on to the visor, and pairs with your Bluetooth enabled cellphone in a jiffy. The device has a built-in speaker that is amply loud and clear (mind you, louder than the speaker on the Blackberry 8800 which many believe to have one of the best spearkerphone capabilities). The microphone is sensitive, and in a few conversations, the person on the other end could not tell I was on a speakerphone. The T505 packs in impressive echo and noise cancellation that helps you be heard clearly on the other end without any annoying feedback. Now, here is the kicker -- you can press a button on the device, a sexy British woman's voice announces an unused FM radio station that the device dynamically finds and starts transmitting at, for your car's radio. This allows the speakers of your car to take over -- the person you are talking to can be heard over the car's audio system, while the microphone on the device continues functioning. Voila! There you go -- fancy car bluetooth system that you can use even in your Ford Pinto! Trust me the device works well.

A few things I wish it had -- should have given you the choice of your own FM station, a little LCD screen to show the frequency, the power ON and the FM station buttons on the front of the unit.
Sidenote: It will also transmit over the air any music from your phone to the FM station; that is if your phone has audio over Bluetooth.
Check out other specs here and buy from Amazon (thats where I found it to be the cheapest).
PS: I don't work for Motorola although this blog post makes it look like they paid me fifty bucks to write this post.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

too = two... Sergey Brin's new blog

Sergey Brin has launched his own personal blog. He is talking about Parkinson's Disease, his risk of getting the disease, and some other posts. The blog is very new so doesn't have much content but I think I will be reading it fairly regularly. It's called TOO, kinda like google is malformed googol, Too is played off of Two. According to him on his first post, Two = in addition = his life outside of work.
Sidenote: Really ugly blog design, cannot believe of all the standard templates Blogger has, he chose something that's this hard to read.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Free WiFi at Denver Intl Airport

Nothing like free wifi at an airport where you might be waiting for what feels like a lifetime to get a flight. At Denver, I was suprised to find free WiFi. It connected pretty fast, and then I noticed how they are paying for this. Simple. Through advertising. I know it sounds very 1995, but, for a frequent traveler like me, its a boon. I don't mind the one inch wide banner on the top of the browser as long as I get the job done. Since I travel mostly for business, I can get reimbursed for paid WiFi, but the hassle is too much -- pull out the credit card, enter all the information, wait for it to process, then get access to the internet (sometimes a weak signal, not worth the money), and of course, remembering to expense it a month later when I do my expenses seems hardly worth it. For now, I am blogging from Denver International Airport, and owe it to the colorful banner ad you see in the screenshot. Are you going to ever do this Boston Logan Intl Airport!?

Thursday, July 10, 2008

drive pricing: I am spending money to get to work!!!

drive pricing
I am spending way too much money to get to work. This website calculates based on your driving distance, the zip-code where you fill gas, and your car's fuel efficiency to do the simple math we never bother to do. Which is why I didn't know I spend almost $16/day getting to+from work. That's almost $350 a month. This I will factor in for sure the next time I ask for a raise.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Wake up Rogers! Your customers know better

Ha ha! This is really funny. After all the announcements on the upcoming iPhone 3G (releasing on July 11th), Rogers Canada (their largest wireless company) has on it's website "Something Really Big is Coming July 11th", seriously, what is it? The suspense is killing me!
Check out the screenshot.

Monday, May 05, 2008

What is Garmin smoking? Can I have some?

No, seriously, what is Garmin smoking? With the 3G iPhone with GPS, almost around the corner, for $200, why would anyone buy this. Okay, maybe I am missing something here, but $500 is too much for any phone in my opinion.
Garmin Nuvifone hitting AT&T for $500 plus? - Engadget

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Stuff Indians Like

My search for entertaining desi sites never ends. Today I have found that one desi blog/website that has the potential to keep me up the whole night. Its one of those blogs that makes you go "Oh! Please, please, please, can I contribute to this blog??! Please!?".  I have already started to think of my own list of Stuff Indians Like.
Enjoy the blog for a while, come up with your own list, let me know in comments or email, repeat.