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  • Chowdiah Memorial Hall: violin-shaped building in Bangalore

    Posted on January 23rd, 2007 Sandeep No comments

    In case you didn’t know, Google updated its maps for Bangalore. It’s now easier to find places of interest.

    Here’s one of them: the Chowdiah Memorial Hall is named after T. Chowdiah, a violin maestro from Karnataka. It is situated below the Sankey Tank Bund road.

    Chowdiah Memorial Hall
  • P.I.P.S.: PIPS Is POSIX on Symbian

    Posted on January 17th, 2007 Sandeep No comments

    (Via NewLC)

    Good news! Symbian will be releasing POSIX libraries, including libc, libm, libpthread and libdl, on Symbian OS. The beta is expected end of Q1 2007.

    From the press release:

    Symbian introduces POSIX libraries on Symbian OS

    P.I.P.S. – ‘PIPS is POSIX on Symbian’- enables easy migration of desktop and server applications to smartphones

    Beijing, China – 16 January 2007 – At the official opening event of its Beijing office, Symbian Ltd today announced the introduction of POSIX libraries on Symbian OS™, which will significantly reduce the effort required to migrate existing desktop and server components, and mobile applications from other platforms, onto Symbian OS. The move will help broaden and deepen application development for Symbian OS and help improve developer productivity. Symbian OS is the market leading operating system for smartphones.

    P.I.P.S. – PIPS Is POSIX on Symbian – will enable C programmers to more easily migrate existing middleware and applications, either commercial or open source, to Symbian OS by providing standard POSIX C APIs on Symbian OS. This has been achieved by supplying a new framework of POSIX C APIs for use by both C and C++ programmers. The new APIs are packaged into industry standard libraries – libc, libm, libpthread and libdl – and are tightly integrated with Symbian OS to optimise performance and memory usage. In addition, an updated tool chain will further reduce migration effort.

    “Symbian smartphones are becoming increasingly powerful, and it is now realistic and desirable to migrate desktop and server code onto mobile devices, opening up exciting possibilities and attracting differently skilled developers to the Symbian ecosystem”, said Jørgen Behrens, executive vice-president, marketing, Symbian. “With P.I.P.S., Symbian further demonstrates its commitment to open standards in the industry.”

    POSIX support is a natural step for Symbian which will allow an ever increasing number of popular desktop middleware and applications such as web servers and file sharing software as well as applications based on other mobile operating systems to be easily ported to Symbian OS. With over 100 million Symbian smartphones in the market, P.I.P.S. makes it even more compelling for developers to target Symbian OS.

    “P.I.P.S. is part of Symbian’s ongoing investment to enhance the development experience on Symbian OS,” said Bruce Carney, head of developer marketing, Symbian. “Native Symbian C++ continues to offer the richest set of APIs for smartphone functionality, with Symbian also enabling familiar frameworks, virtual machines and run-time-environments such as POSIX, Crossfire, Java, Python, Flash and OPL to help move any developer onto the market’s leading and richest mobile OS. In addition, the market momentum for smartphones is growing quickly, making it even more attractive to move to mobile and Symbian OS.”

    IBM Software Group
    Commenting on the announcement’s implications for developer productivity, IBM Software Group’s Dr. Michael Karasick, Director of Development, Client Platforms and Technologies, said, “Supporting open standards such as a POSIX layer for Symbian OS is a key part of our commitment to our customers. Using POSIX, IBM developers are given a simplified approach to porting customer solutions across a variety of platforms, now including Symbian OS, which is a very important platform for us.”

    A beta version of P.I.P.S. will be available for Symbian OS v9.1 and above as a downloadable .SIS file from the Symbian Developer Network by the end of Q1 2007.

    P.I.P.S. includes the following libraries:

    • libc – The “C Standard Library” with system APIs mapped to Symbian OS APIs for better performance
    • libm – A mathematical library
    • libpthread – Implements POSIX-style threading support in terms of the underlying Symbian OS thread support
    • libdl – Implements POSIX-style dynamic linking which extends the dynamic loading model of Symbian OS
  • More on the iPhone

    Posted on January 11th, 2007 Sandeep No comments

    No, it’s not about the lawsuit that Cisco is slapping Apple with.

    Apple’s target release date for the iPhone is June 2007. Mind you, the device has not yet got the FCC approval. Not that that’s going to be a hurdle. Head over to Apple’s job listings and you see quite a few openings for the iPhone team. I used to frequent that site in the hopes of seeing any opening that clued in on them working on a cell phone. All this while, there were no jobs – and after the announcement yesterday, they popped up. There’s even one for a Bluetooth QA engineer.

    Hmm, now how far behind are they, really?

    In other news, it looks like I wasn’t the only one wondering about the usability of a touchscreen interface on a phone. Especially for texting. Paul Kedrosky has the details. Point #2 is definitely worrying.

    The closed system. Is Apple serious that it won’t let third-party developers build software for the thing? If so, and put simply, the device will fail. A closed-box consumer electronics mentality will work in music players, but the future of mobile devices is as a platform, and that requires developers.

    Symbian phones sell like hot cakes not because they run Symbian, it’s because of the tons of applications and games available for them. We have PDF viewers, call blocking applications, Doom, heck even Python, Perl and Ruby on the phone.

  • What’s the “echo $?” equivalent in Windows?

    Posted on January 10th, 2007 Sandeep 1 comment

    Don’t tell me you’ve forgotten good ol’ %ERRORLEVEL%!

    Time and again, this is a handy way to check the exit code of a program executed on the Windows shell (COMMAND.COM or CMD.EXE depending on which version of Windows you are using). Using it is very simple:

    echo %ERRORLEVEL%

    Like in UNIX, a value of 0 usually indicates successful completion, and non-zero indicates an error.

  • On a related note…

    Posted on January 10th, 2007 Sandeep No comments

    The Tao of Mac is currently down, with the following error message:

    Fatal PhpWiki Error

    /home/rcarmo/sites/ Fatal[256]: Can’t connect to database: wikidb_backend_mysql: fatal database error

    • DB Error: connect failed
    • ( [nativecode=Too many connections] ** mysql://tao:XXXXXXXX@localhost/phpwiki_tao)

    Heh, I guess Apple launching the iPhone had something to do with it.

  • Apple unveils iPhone

    Posted on January 10th, 2007 Sandeep 2 comments

    … and brings in a new revolution. Or does it?

    First, let’s take a quick look at the specs:

    • 320×480 display at 160ppi
    • OS X
    • GSM quad-band (850/900/1800/1900MHz)
    • Wi-Fi (802.11b/g), EDGE, Bluetooth 2.0
    • 2 megapixel camera
    • Extremely thin at just 11.6mm
    • 135 grams
    • Total number of buttons on the phone: one

    Let’s take a look at the phone interface.

    iPhone call interface

    Read the rest of this entry »

  • DoT wants your prompt action

    Posted on January 5th, 2007 Sandeep 5 comments

    The Department of Telecommunications (DoT, as we fondly call it) wants you to report every time you receive an international call comes from a national number. Here’s the text message I received just now:

    Dear Customer, if you receive an international call for which the CLI displayed is a local or national number, please inform at toll-free number 1800110420 – DoT.

    We definitely live in interesting times.

  • Handy little MySQL tip to copy an existing table

    Posted on January 5th, 2007 Sandeep No comments

    (Via Tech Recipes)

    In MySQL, to copy an existing table onto another database or into the same database with a different name, use the following SQL statements:

    CREATE TABLE new_table LIKE some_database.existing_table;
    INSERT new_table SELECT * FROM some_database.existing_table;

    With the above two statements, you get an exact replica of the existing table, including table indexes. If you wan to save time and avoid copying the indexes, there’s an easier statement:

    CREATE TABLE new_table SELECT * FROM some_database.existing_table;

    Of course, if you are using MyISAM as the storage engine, you know it’s much easier…

  • IP/Patent Attorneys and Law Firms in Bangalore

    Posted on January 3rd, 2007 Sandeep 9 comments

    The number of patents coming out of Indian companies has risen steadily over the last few years. Whether you are a startup or a big-ass multinational company, you will no doubt require the services of a patent attorney in these matters. Bangalore is home to a few such attorneys:

    Global IP Services PLLC: Prakash Nama is the attorney. They have an office in Jayanagar.

    Brain League IP Services: Based in JP Nagar, they offer patent searching, drafting, filing and prosecution services, apart from consulting on a whole range of Intellectual Property related issues.

    Raj Abhyanker LLP: Situated in Mittal Towers (MG Road), they offer US patent application preparation and prosecution for original inventions generated in India.

    Fox Mandal

    Indcon Legal

    For patents in India, another website of interest is the NIC’s Patent Division – do your prior art search and save time!

  • Google Calendar SMS notification

    Posted on January 2nd, 2007 Sandeep 1 comment

    Has anyone on an Airtel connection (in Karnataka or elsewhere) been able to successfully setup Google Calendar’s notifications via SMS? I haven’t. Every time Google sends out a verification code, it mysteriously disappears into thin air. Damn, this thing will be useful once it starts working. Until then, I’ll restrain myself from using it.

    In other news, the Nokia 5500 seems to be draining the battery a bit faster than I’d like when the radio is turned on for a few hours. Is this normal? This is our first phone with radio so I don’t really know.