Thursday, April 27, 2006

Vonage Offers VoIP Mobile-Phone Calls in the UK

Link to story at NewsFactor Magazine

Vonage, the well known VOIP phone company and The Cloud of UK, leading provider of Broadband wireless will be unveiling a new service in May that enable making cheaper VOIP calls on mobile phones.  The service however only works with new handsets that support dual band (GSM + WiFi) and when the user is in the zone covered by a hotspot.   The Cloud is reported to have around 7000 WiFi hotspots across UK, providing an excellent footprint for greater use of this new service.

The starts a new era of making cheaper and mostly unlimited Mobile calls for a fixed monthly subscription when you are around hotspots. Considering the fact that 70% of mobile calls are made inside buildings, airports, home etc, if there are enough wifi hotspots, user can make most of his/her calls when using wifi-hotspot and hence they are almost free.  There are interesting stories from other service providers across Europe that started similar VOIP on Mobile services for a flat monthly fees.

E-plus from Germany with Skype is reported offering unlimited VOIP on mobile for a monthly fee of $39.99. And also France's second-largest consumer broadband provider, Iliad, launched a service that lets French customers using dual mode mobiles enjoy a similar service.

Monday, April 24, 2006

B2Day : The Quarter: Google Versus Yahoo

B2Day : The Quarter: Google Versus Yahoo

How Google is outperforming Yahoo, in numbers. The difference is huge and gap is widening at a rapid pace. This blog posting has very instructive numbers comparing peg to peg to see the difference.
Here is why Google commands a $130 billion market cap, whereas Yahoo's stock has been treading water for a year, with a market cap of $47 billion:

                                          Annual                            Annual
  1Q06                Google         % change    Yahoo       % change

Market Cap        $130 billion       +114            $47 billion            -8

Direct Revenue    $1.5 billion        +93               $1.1 billion       +33

Net income         $529 million      +60              $160 million       -22

Search share          43%              +6                 28%                -3

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Top 10 Foreign Investors in India

Mauritius is heading the list of top 10 Foreign Investors in India with Rs.313 Billion with US lagging behind in the second position at Rs.99 Billion. See the graph below: 

Link: http://ia.rediff.com/money/2006/apr/21kbk.htm?q=bp&file=.htm



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Monday, April 17, 2006

01:02:03 04/05/06

Celebrating The Moments by Grady Booch
Dick Gabriel passed this on to the Hillside Group:
I got this from a colleague: "As you may have noted, on Wednesday, at two minutes and three secondsafter 1:00 in the morning, the time and date will be 01:02:03 04/05/06. Unless you are very young, or live a very long time, this is probablyyour one chance to observe this date. Whoop it up."

Luckily for people in India and across Europe ( for that instance any country that follows DD/MM/YYYY calendar format), you can seize the moment on 4th May, 2006 at 01:02:03.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Passionate vs. Professional Programmer : Part 2 - Ideas

[ Read about the first part of this Passionate vs. Professional Programmer here.]
Again only few came up with ideas while the rest are busy in discussing them.

It would be better to know a thing about the software product in question to understand these suggestions and how they can impact the product. The product is a set of around 20 very complex soft real time applications that integrate with another 5 third party products. Out of them 4 applications are key applications that can greatly impact the overall performance. Applications are written in C/C++ and run on unix platforms.

Here is the list of suggestions(not in any particular order).
1. Do line by line code review to identify bottle necks.
2. Initialize uninitialized variables to prevent faults.
3. Remove unused local variables to improve performance.
4. Use of profilers to profile the code under run time with near-real time load and identify the 20% of the code that is executed 80% of the time. This 20% code will be reviewed line by line and optimized.
5. Recommeded use of static and dynamic code analyzers to spot obvious issues and memory leaks. Again use of tools that can predict and report real time issues.
6. Pointed out fundamental issues with the current architecture and IPC(inter process communication) mechanisms. Two new architectures that will not impact any applications but require changes only in basic platform support functions have been proposed. These architectures not only improve the capacity theoretically by around 60% but also improve the reliability and fault tolerance of the system to a greater extent.
7. Remove Goto statements to improve performance.
8. Remove tracing functionality in the build versions.
9. Totally unrelated but possibly give more time to the development team to do more unit testing: using effective load build mechanisms to save time during development phase.
10. create and initialize objects just before use.
11. Redesign key classes to minimize data duplication across them.
12. Use of tools to measure code/scenario coverage to reveal untested parts of the product.

Ideas come from passionate people definitely fit to the problem and will have a considerable impact on the overall solution. Unless we look what impact these suggestions can make, and which suggestions took into consideration the current performance and architecture of the product, it is highly impossible to make any comment on any of them. Remember, in an organization a suggestion has to prove not only on technical merit but also on the cost of execution. On the face, all looks good and each may make sense. They are purely professional at this point. But some of them are totally ineffective and useless for the product. In the next part, I will explain which one of them makes an impact for the current product. Then anybody can figure out which are passionate and which are mere professional.

NDTV.com : Fact or Allegation ? Just another twisted title for sensationalism

This is yet another example of NDTV.com’s sensationalism twisted titles. The title says, as if this was a fact, woman made to urinate in pub...