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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Googling For Specifics

Searching for stuffs with Google is really easy. All you do is just type in the search keyword or phase but there are more to it to fine tune your search to get specifically what you want. This is why I want to show you the power of the colon :. It might be old stuff to some people but hey there are people who don't know yet.

Say you want to search for specific file type, the syntax goes like this

filetype: extension search term
eg. filetype:doc how to blog

The above example brings out files with .doc extention relating to a topic on "how to blog"

The next syntax let you search for specific search term on a particular site you know of

site:URL search term
eg. social bookmarking

If you want definition of a word

eg. definition:blog

Being specific on the search term, just add double quotes to the search term

"search term"
eg. "How to blog"

Okay that is it. These are what I know. If you know of others please include them as comments.

Friday, June 22, 2007

IM in Yahoo Mail

Today I discovered you could chat within Yahoo mail as you could with Gmail. It might be late news to some people but for me, I just discovered it. Yahoo is not my primary mail so I barely login to my inbox. I always use pidgin to chat with my yahoo's buddies.

Upon seeing that dialog box floating in my inbox after login, saying something like "Do you know you can chat within Yahoo mail" ( can't really remember the exact wording ) with a catching big button captioned "Continue" below it. My curious life got me to click on that button and with some few minutes of waiting, I saw a list of my buddies who're online in a pane which is sitting left bottom in my inbox.

I quickly clicked on one of them to initiate a chat with him to see how the chat goes like and how different it is from the Gmail one I'm used to.

Well, it looks good with eye-candy features, works as it's supposed to, packed with features of a normal IM client but I really didn't like the stylish callout that displays the messages and the avatars that displays at the ends of the callout, they just takes space and sometimes doesn't show all the messages typed to the receiver especially when they are long. Some of the characters get hidden to the right. You can't even break to new line as I normally do with "Ctrl+Enter". I must say, the whole thing is bloated and fat. If you really want to know want I mean, just check it out youself, remember to switch your mail to the beta. It works with it.

It's really nice to have Yahoo IM access within your mail but I guess most people will appreciate it much if Yahoo could keep it simple and lightweight. It is great though but just too fat for my likings.

This is going to be a good news for students especially those who can't use Yahoo's IM client in their school labs. Worry no more you can still keep in touch with families and friends right in your Yahoo mail but might not be a good news for students with Yahoo access blocked. Sorry for those of you in that soup.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Unlocking LG CDMA Mobile Phone.

Thanks Fiifi for the background work on the image

A colleague of mine at the office had his CDMA mobile phone locked. He was thinking of going to decode it by these phone repairers but Google rescued him from sparing some hard earned ( cedis ).

All he did is a google search with "unlock LG CDMA phone" as the search term and ka boom, this post here showed up with the solutions.

The solutions are:
  1. Enter the last four digit of your phone number. If it doesn't work try the next

  2. Enter 1234. or

  3. Enter 0000. or

  4. Enter 1111
What worked for my colleague is the "last four digits of his phone number" solution. I must say Google do help find solutions to problems.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Ugly Resolution Sometimes In Ubuntu

Due to high cost of bandwidth here in Ghana, most of us don't have Internet at home so we do our Ubuntu installation where we have Internet( to get the latest packages ) and most of us uses Desktops.
In order for us to have Internet connection with our boxes, we have to carry them over to an Internet enabled environment, such as IT training institutes eg. aiti-kace, Internet cafes, etc and we don't carry our monitors along because they are too bloated and heavy to be carried over.

Due to this, we end up doing our installation without our own monitors but a different monitor. Installation at a different location goes very well and everything looks great. Now when we return home and fix our monitors to the boxes, we login and it happens that, our nice looking resolution on the other monitor has changed into a crappy resolution with our monitors. Everything on the screen looks so big and ugly that you can't even see some parts of programs opened. The zoom in level is too much to bear.

Okay story over, now to the solution. One will simply say, to solve such an issue you have to just go to Preferences->Screen Resolution to change to a different resolution but hey it's a big NO. You only see one resolution which means you've to stick to that resolution nothing else. Okay, we figured a way to solve it without tweaking the xorg.conf file, all you have to do is get a live Ubuntu cd, boot it, copy the xorg.conf file generated with the live cd, boot back to your installed Ubuntu, replace the xorg.conf file generated with the Ubuntu live cd with the xorg.conf file in /etc/X11/. After, restart X, login back and you should be smiling :-) again. I must say live cds are rescuers.

Now to the world, know of any other quick solution to this?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Backpack the different context

Ever think of having all your todos, calendar,reminders, files,photos, ideas, thoughts, pieces of notes all hosted online and in one place ? Then is a place to own an account.

I sometimes wish to have all my thoughts,todos and other stuff all hosted in one location but no more wishing for me, backpack has all I wanted. I use to put all these stuffs in different location because these services are scattered all over, like my photo sharing is at a different place, my calendar with a different service provider, events hosted elsewhere making management a complex task.If you need a solution like mine, try backpack, is really cool.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Some Happenings at TEDGlobal2007

For things happening at the moment its a whole lot I can't even put them all here, bloggers are at work blogging live on the sessions, others blog during coffee breaks, lunch, dinner. Below is a typical coffee break session where bloggers are busy blogging.

Some chit chatting, making new friends, connecting with people. See picture below

A typical lunch time. See picture below

Most bloggers at TEDGlobal at a round table having lunch together


Its such a great feeling to be part of this year's TEDGlobal. Meeting all these great people with great backgrounds ah, its great. Loads of people are here, including software developers, great bloggers, Google teams, AMD guys, the GE guys,Media men, Advertising Agencies and a whole lots I can't list all here.

I personally don't want to blog on the sessions because there are more than enough people blogging on these I feel its the same story that is going to float around. Listed below are some of the live bloggers around blogging live on the sessions.
Ethan Zuckerman
Juliana of Afromusing
Ramon Thompson
Jennifer Breau

As for the talks, they're awesome, the one that really caught all my attention was the talk made by the Mathematician Ron Eglash about Fractals in Africa Architecture. When he was introduced as a Mathematician I thought his talk was going to be about numbers because that is all Maths is about but it turns out to be about fractals being blend with Information Technology. It about looking at Africa architecture closely to model a fractal using a transformation geometry.

Do you know you can model a fractal from a cornrow by using a transformation geometry? it was amazing when I saw it.

Fractal model of a lady's cornrow |   Actual cornrow

More pictures of fractals can be seen here