Monthly Archives: December 2010

Google Promotes Education Software

Positive use of technology is a welcome step. When thousands of entertainment is offered online, a aan effort to realize online learning programs by google is commendable. According to sources, the world’s largest search engine Google is talking with educational-software companies to help build a marketplace for online learning programs, an industry whose value may approach $5 billion this year. As readers may be aware, google already works with schools and provides free word processing, e-mail and spreadsheet programs to many students and teachers. Now it has made an attempt to not only generate its revenue but also help outside developers sell applications to educators.

Commenting on this new step, Google’s business development manager for education, Mr.Obadiah Greenberg, said, “If we can provide access to education apps to our 10 million users in thousands of schools, then that would be a win all around,” . Further, Mr. James Birchfield, famously known as google guru said, “A teacher logs into a Google Apps account and they can access anything in the marketplace. It gives you a one-stop-shop kind of thing where we know we can integrate it and we know where it’s all saved.”


Computerised School Records In 2011

From tax payment to shopping everything is becoming online. Now in 2 more months even information about primary and upper primary schools in each block of the state will be available online. This will enhance the record keeping system in schools in India. The school records as well as the details of the number of children in each school will be available online. According to the state Education Department, under the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), they will computerise all its Block Resource Centres (BRCs) and make information of each primary and upper primary school available online..

According to an official as reported in the Indian Express “This is a big project and will help us create transparency and track each and every student in the government primary and upper primary schools,”. “So far, all records of these schools were only on paper. Often, we got complaints that in order to inflate the number of students enrolled, a child’s name was featured in two different schools in the block. But now, when all the records will be computerised and available online, it will be easier for us to keep track.”

The concerned State authorities are said to have already given the needed instructions for each district for purchase of computers and other equipment. It is expected that the instructions will be implemented by the end of this year

Facebook’s Popularity Skyrocketing With “CityVille”

Facebook has long been on limelight. One of the reasons for this is the interesting games available. Facebook’s game developers seem to know the pulse of the users very well. According to recent survey, the latest game “Cityville” has become most popular/famous application on Facebook in less than a month, exceeding Zynga’s previous hit “Farmville in all areas. The core game dynamic of CityVille is click-to-do. Click to build, click to collect, click to plant, click to harvest, click to deliver supplies. It’s reminiscent of the PC game Black and White in that although you are ostensibly the manager of the city, you actually do a lot of manual labour. This new game is popular with 16.8 million daily active users and is adding thousands of new users everyday to facebook.

Before we were figuring out how to make social games, now we are mastering the art of making social games,” said Mark Skaggs, said the vice president of product development at Zynga which is the social games company behind Facebook games. He also added,” The next generation of FaceBook games will have deeper gameplay, more polish, and be much more and better social experiences.”

UID To Be The Basis For Mobile Subscriber Verification

Before issuance of mobile numbers and SIM cards a proof of the proper subscriber identification norms and paperwork is a must. But Indian Security agencies very frequently encounter the problem of the lack of proof by the willing subscribers. UID number project may prove to be a solution for this long standing problem as the UID number will serve to be the definitive proof for subscriber verification. This number is safer than any other document and will become the basis of issuing mobile connections in the future.

According to a newspaper report, DoT secretary R Chandrashekhar said, “Serious consideration is being given to make UID the fundamental basis of subscriber verification. This will mean that the present arrangement will continue for a period of time but once UID is up and running the transition could occur very quickly and nationwide.”

Source: TOI

Free Video Calls via Skype’s New Application

Using iphones to call your loved ones is enjoyable but when the users can also see their loved ones while making calls they will be thoroughly excited. Knowing this the new version of the free iPhone app for Skype SA has been launched today which will let users make as well as receive free calls.

With this new application released today through Apple Inc’s Itunes Store, Iphone users can make free video calls to other Skype users who are using the application or can have access to the feature using Skype on their computer or other video phone. Users of the Internet calling and messaging service will be able to use both Wi-Fi and AT&T Inc.’s 3G cellular network. FaceTime software, which comes with iPhones, works only with Wi-Fi. However, FaceTime doesn’t work over the cellular network and doesn’t allow calls to Windows-based computers.

This release seems to be meant to soothe millions of skype users who suffered its service outage that lasted for about 24 hours.

Orkut Attempts To Win Back Its Users

Orkut was once a site that was famous for its photo uploads. But with Facebook adding interesting features the number of users of orkut drastically reduced. Orkut is now beginning to make some attempts to tempt users to use more of it by enabling users to edit photos in their Orkut albums. For this purpose, Orkut has been integrated with Picnik. By using the option “Edit in Picnik” in the orkut photo albums, users can do basic fixes with easy but powerful editing tools. All that users have to do is to click the option button to even do changes in fonts, shapes, frames. Moreover users can even tweak and add loads of effects that make the photos look really impressive.

This is just another attempt to win back its users but only time will tell us if this really attracts users.

Track Santa Claus With Google Maps

Santa Claus is a character that always crosses our minds when we think of Christmas. But everyone knows he is a fictional character who is used for adding joy by giving gifts. no one so far has really tracked him on Christmas. But today this is possible at which enables users to track the jolly old tart through Google Earth, Google Maps or even YouTube. NORAD which stands for North American Aerospace Defense Command will use a radar system called the North Warning System monitors the radar systems continuously for indications that Santa Claus has left the North Pole. This powerful radar system consists of 47 installations strung across the northern border of North America. According to Google, users can leave old Santa a voice message on his Google Voice Number and also watch him on the “Santa Cam” video. To pacify the anxious users who wait for Santa, a number of fun Christmas games are loaded for them to play and pass time. Twitter, Facebook and Youtube account holders can get updates on their page from NORAD… The plugin can be downloaded by Windows users for Chrome, Internet Explorer, Firefox and Flock browsers. Mac users can do so, by downloading the plugin for Safari and Firefox.

Skype Offers Low Cost Phone Services for Festival Season

Holiday season demands lots of communication. Knowing the requirement of people in this festive season, Skype has introduced Freephone2phone with which long distance and cellular calls are absolutely free at a minimum affordable price. International calls are free as well, and they can last up to 10 minutes for each number dialed. However this facility will work only if calls originate in the US and will not work without a caller ID.

Skype’s official news describes this as, “You might call us the “talk-on-the-phone” channel. Simply by dialing one of our access numbers on your mobile, we’ll soon bring you a whole bunch of new free services.

Though this service is not absolutely free, it can save a great deal of the user’s phone bill expense.

Facebook’s revived news feed filters

The most popular social networking site on date has unveiled the new way to filter news feed. This new feature which was available to only limited users is now available to all its users. As users must be aware, the news feed section had a limited options. One being Top News and the other recent stories. But now it has a list of options that includes choosing to see stories only from a specific Group of friends. There is also a live feed setting wherein the user can determine whether they want to see more or fewer stories from a specific user. Other improvements include status Updates showing a stream of imageless updates from your friends, several links focusing on status updates, photos displaying only posts with images, and Pages only showing the users updates from Pages as opposed to persons on Facebook.

In a nutshell, facebook has been redesigned to cut down on the things that users are not interested in and to show them more of the content that they want to see more often.

Twitter Will Help Hush Noise in British Courts

Reporting from British courts is tightly controlled, with television coverage and photography prohibited and sound recording allowed only in exceptional circumstances. However an unexpected announcement came by when the top judge announced that the famous site Twitter can be used in courtrooms in England and Wales. This is said to be an attempt to reduce any improper interferences with the court’s sound recording equipment and other distractions, “The use of an unobtrusive, hand-held, virtually silent piece of modern equipment for the purposes of simultaneous reporting of proceedings to the outside world as they unfold in court is generally unlikely to interfere with the proper administration of justice,” said Igor Judge, the most senior judge in England and Wales.

The use of live text-based communications in open court is not statutorily prohibited in the law of England and Wales. It was stated by the Judge that after careful examination as to whether such use would pose any danger to the court proceedings the use of twitter would be limited to journalists. The interim ruling was the result of the requests of the journalists, covering the extradition coverings of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, to tweet new proceedings.

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