Sunday, January 20, 2008

The Browser Wars !!

No matter how much my good friends GA and PDV hate it, tech posts will always be a part of this blog. So here's another one on a topic that I have always been meaning to write and have finally been able to do so with some concrete conclusive bit of supporting evidence too - The Browser Wars (more aptly titled "Firefox v/s IE", given that the rest of them have barely been able to capture any market).

We all know how Microsoft virtually monopolized the internet browser market by shipping Internet Explorer (IE) free-of-cost with Windows. Netscape made a hue and cry over the "unfair" competition but finally lost out to Microsoft's might.

With a company whose revenues were lesser than what Microsoft earned in interest on its cash, Netscape was indeed vulnerable. It depended only on a single product - Netscape Navigator while Microsoft had 90% of the OS market captured with Windows. IE research and development was funded through Microsoft's Windows revenues and hence MS could afford to ship IE free of cost. By 2002, when IE gained almost 92% of the market share, Netscape was destined to be washed out !

But peace was not in sight for Microsoft yet. 2001 saw the launch of what I personally regard as one of the most robust and extensive pieces of software - Firefox !

Launched in 2001, and growing by leaps and bounds ever since, Firefox is undoubtedly one of the greatest contributions of the open source community to the home PC user. It is easy to use, customizable, powerful, secure and FREE - fits everyone's requirement like a glove ! With a huge repository of Firefox add-is and themes that enable customization of the browser look and feel, Firefox has been eating into IE's share slowly and steadily. Here are statistics from the World Wide Web Consortium (

The official statistics show an approx 54% of share with IE variants while 36% share with Firefox variants. However, I have a different story to tell. I maintain some basic statistics of the visitors to my blog, including their browser information and out of 200 odd visits, here is the information that I've collated:

I agree that the sample of people visiting my blog is not exactly representative of the entire population of web surfers but the point that I'm trying to make here is that probably the scene is changing faster than MS can imagine. The message for Microsoft ?

"Beware! Open source giant on the loose!!"

Till next time.. cheers !

Friday, January 18, 2008

Backtrack to MBA entrance days...

Since there's nothing interesting happening in my life these days (at least nothing that I would want to bore my blog readers with), I decided to take a walk down the memory lane and share my journey through the tumultuous days of MBA entrance examinations which culminated in the very delightful SPJIMR, Mumbai admission.

2006 November - It was my second attempt at MBA entrances. My first attempt in 2005 (while I was in my final year of engineering) didn't go too well (percentiles remain undisclosed!). The second attempt was placed right in the middle of my job tenure at Oracle, Bangalore. Thankfully for me, the work-life balance that so many corporates CLAIM, was a reality at Oracle. I had sufficient amount of time on my hands to prepare for the entrance exams. But as luck would have it - I made the most unproductive use of that time that was possible. The few Sunday Mock CATs which I attended (purely out of the guilt feeling of paying 5K odd bucks to Career Launcher and not attending a lot of the mocks) were the saving grace.

The exams happened - some good, some bad, some ugly and some not worth qualifying with any adjective invented yet by mankind! For the sake of maintaining my reputation amongst those who know me, I shall restrict to discussing the "good" ones here. XAT was one of the good ones which ultimately fetched me an SPJIMR call.

Didn't come as a MAJOR surprise because I had the call in 2005 also with a lesser score in CAT. But nevertheless - it was wonderful to see my name on the website after hours of refreshing and

Then came the most difficult part - "converting" the call (for the non-MBA aspirants : It means securing a final seat in the institute after clearing several rounds of interviews!). And while the logical mind would start expecting a whole lot of things here about how I went about preparing day and night for the interviews and stuck to that call for my dear life, I prefer to spring a few surprises :D

I only remember glancing at the newspapers every now and then and following some news channels once I was back from office (the news channels would still not receive higher preference than my favorite prime time channels - MTV, Cartoon Network, Disney Channel and HBO). Of course, the experience of attending an SPJIMR interview last year had me well prepared for what was coming my way :)

The fist round of interview took place in Bangalore - "smooth" is how I would describe it. No high points and no low points. Came to know the results a few days later when I was sitting in my office refreshing the website :P - I had cleared the first round. The second round held in Mumbai was also a breeze. The final results this time created a much bigger flutter than earlier - I was happy (and running right through my office corridors to call up home!), my manager at office wasn't too happy (I wasn't too happy about leaving Oracle either... one of the best places to work!) and mom and dad were obviously elated!

Amidst all this, I must mention that there was no bigger support than my friends and my brother who'd have to bear with my endless discussions about interviews, result dates, B-Schools etc. etc. etc. I virtually spoke the "MBA" language for those few months right through my coffee and lunch breaks at office (My good friends GA, BKD and PS will vouch for that!). If someone asks me today about why I converted my call this year and not last year - the answer would not be "good score", "work-ex" or "luck" - the answer is that it is these people who made all the difference :) So a BIG "thank you" to all of you.. And a specially BIG thank you to my special friend code-named "Sona Chhele" who was probably the saddest of the lot when I broke the news about leaving for Mumbai.

Till next time... Cheers !

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Weekend Retreats @ Mumbai

(Me @ Infinity Mall, Andheri(W), Mumbai)

After several comments and suggestions (please refer the comments for my previous posts for some pretty harsh ones :P) about how I should stop blogging about technology, Madhuri, Aishwarya and Wodehouse and get back to blogging about ME, drove me to write this one.

Amidst the hectic MBA life out here at SPJIMR, the only saviors that we have are a few hangouts which are our weekend retreats(just to re-iterate : weekend at SPJIMR is a Thursday and not Sunday like in most other parts of the world). Here are some of the top ones:

1. Vrindavan - Lifeline for the mess-oppressed souls at campus, this little joint, right outside the campus gate is undoubtedly a favorite. Located in Andheri(W). Specialty - Malai Kulfi with rabdi and falooda!

2. Krishna Udupi - Pretty much the same as above. Has the distinct advantage of being close to my hostel and hence gets my vote on occasions when I'm tired/lazy/sleepy (Those of know me would have inferred by now that I'm a pretty good contributor to the profits of this Krishna Udupi setup!!). Located in Andheri(W). Specialty - Palak paneer

3. Infinity Mall - The "Forum" (ref : Forum Mall, Bangalore) of Andheri(W). Always abuzz, always festive, good food, close to campus. And yeah - true to a mall-hopper attitude, have never bought so much as a pencil from this place. We don't go to these malls to BUY, do we ??

4. Juhu Beach - Have been here only twice. It's dirty and crowded, but when with friends, who cares ?? The waves (which in my opinion look starkingly similar to a bunch of little chihuahuas yapping towards you) make one forget all about the assignments, quizzes and exams back there at college!

Till next time.. stay good, keep smiling, post a comment and keep coming back to read more!


Monday, January 7, 2008

A Likeable Desktop..

After several weeks of exploration and experimentation with wallpapers, Windows Vista Aero themes and icons - I finally seem to have stumbled upon this desktop setting that looks pretty cool :) For those of you who like the above theme and would want to replicate something on similar lines, here are the details:

1. Wallpaper - Download Here (Expand in full view in picasa and copy)
2. Mac style icon bar - Rocket Dock ( Free Download
3. Windows Vista Aero colour scheme - Read Colour
4. Icons - Disable "autoarrange" and drag icons to the center. Arrange as per your choice though I personally prefer the horizontal look!

Till next time..


Thursday, January 3, 2008

New Year Resolutions..

It's that time of the year when we are all making resolutions and when I say "all", I have a jolly good mind to include myself ! So here goes my very own set of new year resolutions (those who have been waiting for this can whistle, hoot and clap.. the curtains are going up):
  1. I shall LISTEN to the professors in class. Exceptions - The boring ones, classes that stretch beyond an hour, classes held after I've had a good meal, classes which deal with Finance or finance related topics, classes which are held when I don't want them to be held !
  2. I shall stay well organized (with the help of a planner diary which I soon propose to buy)
  3. I shall be nice to everyone. Exceptions - Two old ladies who don't miss an opportunity to make my life miserable (ping me in private for details), those who are not nice to me, those whom I don't WANT to be nice to !
  4. I shall make my bed every morning before leaving for class. Exceptions - days when I get up after 8:00 am for the 8:30 am class.
Those who know me will vouch for the fact that the exceptions are damn reasonable and nothing to be scoffed at.

Shall try and keep you all updated on how well I'm keeping all my resolutions...
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