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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 #253


You can now configure Azure Backup while you're creating a virtual machine

* Brand Detection is a new capability in Microsoft Video Indexer, which enables you to index brand mentions in speech and visual text, based on a large built-in brands catalog as well as with customization. Brands are disambiguated from other terms using context.

* Speech recognition systems are composed of several components. The most important components are the acoustic and language models. Microsoft Cognitive Services Speech API gives developers access to state of the art speech models.  Custom Speech Service enables acoustic and language model adaptation with zero coding.

* Azure Active Directory supports Oauth and other authentication protocols but not Kerberos, Hadoop supports only Kerberos for strong network authentication. To support applications/technologies that require Kerberos authentication, and in conjunction with Azure Active Directory for identity and access management (IAM), Microsoft released a PaaS service called Azure Active Directory Domain Services (AAD DS) - Just enough Azure for Hadoop

* Amazon's purchase of US luxury healthstuff retailer Whole Foods will also see it using rival Microsoft's Azure cloud – at least for the time being. Microsoft offers a case study about Whole Foods' use of Azure. The retailer is a big user of Azure Active Directory Premium, which it used to create a hybrid cloud director and deliver single-sign-on to 90,000 employees - The Register

* Migrating a VM can be done either manually (copying the VHD into Azure and "attaching" it to a new VM or through using Azure Site Recovery to migrate the VM by doing a mock fail-over. For physical machines, there are 3rd part tools that can create a VHD image of from a physical machine, then you can also just copy that into Azure to "attach" to a new VM - Cynthn-MSFT

Amazon WorkSpaces, a remote display protocol is used to compress, encrypt, and encode data so that only images are transmitted. Amazon WorkSpaces comes with a Windows 7 or Windows 10 desktop experience, or you can run your own Windows 7 or Windows 10 Desktop operating system. Amazon WorkSpaces securely integrates with your corporate Active Directory so that your users can continue using their existing enterprise credentials to seamlessly access company resources.

* You can get Gmail to handle all mailto: links with registerProtocolHandler. Open your javascript console (cmd-opt-j on Mac, ctrl-shift-j on Windows) and enter:
navigator.registerProtocolHandler("mailto", "https://mail.google.com/mail/?extsrc=mailto&url=%s", "Gmail");
If you ever need to removing this setting, you can do that at chrome://settings/handlers in Chrome and Preferences->Applications->mailto in Firefox.

AgingBooth & Oldify are popular age enhancement apps. Perhaps the most common application of age progression work is for rendering older versions of missing children.

Even Apple executives, Facebook billionaires endorse tech diets

* At his mother's urging, Jonas Salk put aside aspirations of becoming a lawyer, and instead concentrated on classes necessary for admission to medical school. During Salk's medical studies, he stood out from his peers not just because of his continued academic prowess but because he had decided he did not want to practice medicine. Instead, he became absorbed in research as he desired to help humankind in general rather than single patients. After successful tests on laboratory animals, on July 2, 1952, assisted by the staff at the D.T. Watson Home for Crippled Children, Salk injected 43 children with his killed-virus vaccine. A few weeks later, Salk injected children at the Polk State School for the retarded and feeble-minded. In 1954 he tested the polio vaccine on about one million children, known as the polio pioneers. The vaccine was announced as safe on April 12, 1955. When  asked who owned the patent to it, Salk replied, "Well, the people I would say. There is no patent. Could you patent the sun?". The vaccine is calculated to be worth $7 billion had it been patented. However, lawyers from the National Foundation for Infantile Paralysis did look into the possibility of a patent, but ultimately determined that the vaccine was not a patentable invention because of prior art...."at 40, the once obscure scientist ... was lifted from his laboratory almost to the level of a folk hero." -  Wikipedia

* Currently, fund houses can charge a maximum of 2.5% of assets under management (AUM) for managing an equity scheme. On top of this, 20 basis points (of AUM) can be charged in lieu of an exit fee, and another 30 basis points for promoting mutual fund penetration in small towns. This takes the total charges to a maximum of 3%. India’s average equity expense ratio or Total Expense Ratio (TER) of 2.22% is among the highest in the world, said an October study by mutual fund tracker Morningstar Inc - Mint

* Budget 2018 proposes to change how long term capital gains (LTCG) on equity shares and units of equity oriented mutual funds are taxed in your (an individual's) hands. Currently, LTCG on equity shares and equity oriented mutual fund units were exempt from tax in an individual's hands. Budget 2018 proposes to levy a 10% tax plus cess on these gains. However, there are two escape windows and one mitigating factor.
Escape window 1: If you sell your equity or equity MF units (held for more than one year) before 31.3.2018, you can still claim tax exemption on long term capital gains from these.
Escape window 2: LTCG on these instruments realised after 31.3.2018 by an individual will remain tax exempt up to Rs 1 lakh per annum i.e. the new LTCG tax of 10% would be levied only on LTCG of an individual exceeding Rs 1 lakh in one fiscal. For example, if your LTCG is Rs 1,30,000 in FY2018-19 from these two instruments then only Rs 30,000 will face the new LTCG tax - ET

* ..the proposed LTCG tax in addition to the securities transaction tax (STT) is a double whammy for investors-especially since the STT was introduced back in 2004-05 in lieu of the LTCG - Business Today

* 7000 ultra-rich Indians shifted overseas in 2017. Indian HNWIs moved to the US, UAE, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. India has been ranked sixth in the list of wealthiest countries.

* "Always dress like you are going to see your worst enemy" - Coco Chanel

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