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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


This Week I Learned - Week #221

This Week I Learned -

* New Azure VPN Gateway SKU’s provide more throughput with an option that offers bandwidth of 1.25 Gbps

* Most Microsoft Cognitive Services don't require an Azure Subscription to try, trial keys are available for a 30 day period  & are different for different services.

* In April 2016, the party that would elect the next president of France didn’t exist. Unlike established political parties, En Marche! ("On the Move" in English) didn't have any infrastructure, budget or members to support its cause. Then they built a website that contributed to Macron becoming the President. En Marche used Symfony an open-source web platform made up a set of PHP Components & a Web Application framework and hosted it on GCP

* Ransomware, one of the oldest and most prolific forms of cyberattack, relies on encrypting a victims’ files, essentially locking them out of their own computer systems, until they pay a ransom. Last year, cybersecurity researchers estimate that criminals made over $1 billion through ransomware, with victims ranging from the chief executives of Fortune 500 companies to mom-and-pop businesses and private individuals. WannaCry’s spread was halted by an independent cybersecurity researcher, who discovered that by registering a single domain for about $10 he could stop the attack in its tracks. Financial gain may be the least likely motive of Petya - NY Times

Trade deficit refers to the fact that the US imports more from the world than it exports. The national debt is the result of the fact that the US government spends more revenue than it collects. Trade surplus is exporting more to the rest of the world than you import from it. The accumulation of national debt isn't just something that happens to the economy — it's also the product of policy decisions. Prior to the Great Recession, US debt skyrocketed because President George W. Bush implemented huge tax cuts for the rich while spending trillions of dollars on the Iraq and Afghanistan wars - CNBC

* “Drawdown,” a new book edited by the green entrepreneur Paul Hawken, analyzes 100 potential solutions, ranks them by the amount of greenhouse gases they could cut, and reaches some surprising conclusions about the most effective ways to fight global warming. How we use and dispose of refrigerants — the chemicals used in refrigerators and air-conditioners — has the potential to reduce greenhouse gases more than any of the other 99 strategies in the book. Solar farms will be extremely important in slowing global warming, but onshore wind turbines are ranked even higher. Both are expensive to build, but they can also provide vast savings in the long run: more than $10 trillion over the next few decades if installed at a wide scale. In the United States, 40 percent of all food is wasted, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council. Cutting down on waste to begin with is far more effective than composting what’s wasted. Plant-based diets are the No. 4 climate change solution over all.

* The benefits of car-pooling don’t even come close to the emissions savings from electric cars.

* More than 80 percent of global trade, by volume, travels by ships

* The very first drug to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy, rare, deadly muscle disease is Exondys 51, which can cost more than $1 million a year. Duchenne muscular dystrophy, overwhelmingly affects boys and causes muscles to deteriorate, killing many of them by the end of their 20s. Food and Drug Administration overruled its own experts — who weren’t convinced the Exondys 51, also known as eteplirsen, had shown sufficiently good results — and gave the drug conditional. An estimated 30 million people in the United States — about 10 percent of the population — are living with one of roughly 7,000 rare diseases. While the drug manufacturer, Sarepta, has said Exondys 51 costs about $300,000 a year per child, the price, based on a child’s weight, can be much higher. Exondys 51 may be helping protect muscle cells from deterioration by producing a form of dystrophin, a protein largely lacking in those with the genetic mutation. The boys typically need wheelchairs by their teenage years, and their hearts and lungs eventually give out. Between 9,000 and 12,000 people are estimated to be living with Duchenne in the United States; about 13 percent have the genetic mutation receptive to the new drug - NY Times

* All-beef hot dogs are part of the New York’s food DNA. Most of the high-quality hot dogs available to home cooks in the United States are made with all beef. An overwhelming majority of the producers of organic, all-natural and humanely raised meat make only all-beef hot dogs. The hot dog’s immediate ancestors, traditional wienerwursts and frankfurters from Germany and Austria, were made from combinations of pork, beef and sometimes veal. Beyond the meat, frankfurters have a trace of smoke, a touch of garlic and a hum of warm spice from paprika, coriander, clove or nutmeg. These subtle seasonings are what make a hot dog a hot dog - NY Times

* The Qutb Minar is surrounded by several historically significant monuments of the Qutb complex, including Quwwat-ul-Islam Mosque, which was built at the same time as the Minar, and the much older Iron Pillar of Delhi.  An inscription in Persian at the  mosque's inner eastern gateway states that material used in its construction was salvaged from the demolition of twenty-seven of Delhi's Hindu and Jain temples. Pillars from these demolished temples were used in the mosque, with their iconography intact. The nearby Iron Pillar from the Gupta empire, predates the Islamic minar and still bears its Brahmic inscriptions, survived as part of the Qutb complex - Wikipedia

Airtel's Wynk app can stream music at HD (320/256 kbps), High (128kbps), Medium (64kbps) and Regular (32kbps) bitrates through a web browser on any device. Due to its adaptive streaming feature, it can automatically adjust the quality to ensure best listening experience depending on the coverage and connection speed a user is using. Along with Saavn & Gaana it is one of the popular music streaming sites in India.

India imports an average of 1,000 tonnes of raw camphor from China and Indonesia, which has fallen by 20 per cent due to the crop shortfall.

* As many as 2.4 million new demat accounts were opened in 2016, the highest since 2008

There are over 25 crore PAN card holders in the country while Aadhaar has been issued to 111 crore people.

* In this fragmented media environment, the spread of false information is accelerated and amplified by a web of allied activist-journalists with large online followings...They are really engaging in a pure persuasion effort. They are not playing by any established rules. And they are cashing in on the mistrust and uncertainty people feel about traditional news media - NY Times

Hyderabad Metro Rail is being built under the private, public partnership (PPP) mode unlike other metros rails in the country which are government-funded projects

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