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Tech Tips, Tricks & Trivia

by 'Anil' Radhakrishna
An architect's notes, experiments, discoveries and annotated bookmarks.

Search from over a hundred HOW TO articles, Tips and Tricks

TWIL - Week #38

This Week I Learned:

  • Disconnect2, is an open source web browser plugin built by ex-Googler Brian Kennish who once worked for DoubleClick. It blocks over 2,500 cookies and tracking scripts, making users practically invisible to advertisers and  third-party traffic monitoring tools such as Google Analytics. What it doesn’t do is block first-party services. So, if you’re on Amazon.com, you’ll still see what Amazon recommends based on your behavior. Disconnect is a Benefit Corporation, a breed of company that puts social or environmental concerns ahead of maximizing shareholder value. Source - Wired
  • To access blocked websites in a restricted network, you can use Google Mobilizer, the “cache” operator to access a cached version of a web page or append URL of blocked site to this address - http://www.gmodules.com/ig/proxy?url={URL of blocked site}
  • India has about 44 mutual fund houses. HDFC Mutual Fund (MF), with assets of Rs 1.03 lakh crore is the largest.
  • Life Insurance Corporation of India has 12 times more agents (12,78,234) than employees (119,767 employees, out of which 24,295 were women (20%) , as on 31 March 2012)
  • Bollywood legend, Amitabh Bachchan has over 7.5 million followers on Twitter 
  • Scam tainted, former Railway Minister Pawan Kumar Bansal,  lodged a complaint with the police that the number of 'likes' on his Facebook page had shot up by more than 10,000 in just one day and he suspects foul play. 
  • According to a Times of India report, Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) will issue up to 5000 VIP passes on the occasion of New Year. There will be six VIP tickets for each pass. This reminds me of a "Best Friends Day" email greeting years ago, from a pseudo-friend who marked the same email to dozens of others making the term “best friend” hollow. Similarly, if there are 5000 VIPs (counting the number of tickets, its effectively 30,000), it makes the term "very important" hollow and indicates something extremely wrong with the system. Tirupati is the richest temple in India. 30,000 visitors will get preferential treatment over lakhs of other worshippers because the system works that way!
  • A 2011 report in the medical journal Lancet found that 7.3% of India’s 1.2 billion population was overweight and 1.2% obese. It added that one in every five people across the country has at least one chronic disease like cardiovascular, respiratory and metabolic disorders, many of which are caused by increasingly unhealthy lifestyles. For the first time, bariatric surgery, which includes a procedure to reduce the size of the stomach to help decrease food intake, has been added to a list of medical treatments covered under a health insurance program for current and retired national government workers, including members of Parliament and Supreme Court judges. The government will cover up to 262,500 rupees ($4,224) of costs per treatment...At Apollo Hospitals,  that first carried out weight loss surgeries in 2005, for example, the surgery starts at a cost of around 340,000 rupees ($5,462). Meanwhile, at Sir J.J. Hospital, a government-run facility in Mumbai, surgeries have been performed for just 160,000 rupees ($2,565). Source: WSJ
  • RBI Governor, Raghuram Rajan studied at IIT-Delhi and IIM-Ahmedabad.
  • National Housing Bank (NHB) maintains RESIDEX, an index for tracking prices of residential properties. They also provide a rental index but it not as comprehensive as Housing.co.in
    Price Heat Maps of Bangalore & Hyderabad on Housing.co.in make it easy to find a locality that suits your budget
  • The term "420" is used in India to refer to a confidence trickster. It is derived from Section 420 of the Indian Penal Code covers offences relating to cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property. Nigerian scams, are also called 419 scams as the number "419" refers to the article of the Nigerian Criminal Code dealing with fraud. 

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