Sunday, January 13, 2008

Tata Nano: World's Cheapest Car making news across the globe

Tata Motors unveiled the much awaited Rs. 1,00,000 (US$ 2500) car on January 9th, 2008 at Auto Expo 2008, New Delhi. The car has been called by names - "People's Car" and "1-Lakh Car". But officially, it is called as Tata Nano. :)

Tata Nano - Luxury Edition

You can read more about this car at Tata Motors' press release here. Search for "Tata Nano" in Google News and you will find reviews and photographs from lot of web sites.

What surprised me (also made me happy) is that the news of Tata Nano appeared in TechMeme (which is primarily as technology news site). and this story was run by The New York Times. Wow!!..

Tata Nano - Standard Edition - The 1-Lakh No-Frills Car

World must be surprised that India can make cars at US$ 2500.. without compromising on looks, safety and performance. (at least thats what Tata claims :) )

I liked this video below which is a collage from different channels like CNBC, CNN, ABC, etc. put together. (The video comes with its advertisements in between.. you would have to bear with that)

PS: Tata Motors was also in news yesterday for acquiring the Jaguar and Land Rover brands.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Finally buying a laptop - HP Pavilion DV6707US

I am finally buying a laptop after thinking a lot. I was not sure if I really needed a laptop. But I have a reason to get a laptop now. Nazia needs a laptop so that she can complete her pending office work (when it is there) either her parent's home or mine. So, primarily its going to be used by my wife.

I think this laptop is really good in terms of hardware configuration and features. Most of all.. very good value for money.

You can find more about this laptop in HP's product site.

Initially, I was planning to get a HCL Leaptop which is far less in terms of hardware configuration (only 1GB RAM and really bulky). And for which I would have to shell out approximately INR 35,000/- (US$ 875).

But HP Pavilion DV6707US is far better configuration and I would get it for US$729 (from Circuit City) or for US$755 (if I get it directly from HP).

My friend Sankar Dhanapal would be getting it for me today noon and Shafiq (who is my ED) will bring for me next week.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

WinXp License Question: Reinstalling Windows XP on a new PC or Hardware

I have a Genuine Windows XP Home Edition which I had got last year. You can read my earlier post (in wordpress blog) on this topic.

Now, I am planning to get a laptop for my wife, which has FreeDOS installed on it. So, I have been thinking of uninstalling Windows XP from my desktop (I will have linux alone on my desktop) and install Windows XP on the new laptop that I intend to buy. Basically, my wife cannot live without Windows and I can live happily with Linux (I occasionally use Windows.. I love it too.).

Now, I read it somewhere that Windows forms a complex key (called a Installation ID) using 10 different hardware components on the installed PC and then activates Windows using the same. The idea is to ensure that we do not install Windows on multiple PC (this is for a single license windows). So, I install the same Windows on a second PC, Microsoft can talk to second instance of Windows on the new PC and will come to know that its a different hardware.

So, I started wondering if uninstalling WinXP from my desktop and installing it again on Laptop would make Microsoft think that my Windows XP is a pirated version. I was worried if they would blacklist my genuine windows thinking it is actually a pirated one.

I started searching the net to find out if I can go ahead and transfer my Windows XP to a new hardware (laptop in my case) without any licensing issues.

Searching Google did not get me any relevant results. So, I thought let me chat with Microsoft Customer Support to get this answered.

This is what I asked Customer Support.
I have a doubt on windows xp license. Can I uninstall winxp from my old hardware and install it on a new PC. Will the license still be valid ?
And this is what the Customer Rep had to say.
Please note that, the End User License Agreement (EULA) for Windows XP stipulates that this software or product can be only installed on a single computer. If you wish to install it on a second computer, please purchase an additional license for Windows XP. However, you can uninstall it from the old Hard Drive and you can install it on new Harddrive without purchasing additional license.
The Rep also told me that.
I recommend that you contact Microsoft Product Activation Team at the following toll free number: (888) 571-2048. They are available 24 hours per day.
You see the entire chat conversation by clicking on the below image.

I also checked the Windows XP Product Activation page and this is what they have to say (refer the red colored font quoted below).

Product Activation Overview

Microsoft Product Activation is an anti-piracy technology designed to verify that software products have been legitimately licensed. This aims to reduce a form of piracy known as casual copying. Activation also helps protect against hard drive cloning. Activation is quick, simple, and unobtrusive, and it protects your privacy.

Product Activation works by verifying that a software program's product key has not been used on more personal computers than intended by the software's license. You must use the product key in order to install the software and then it is transformed into an installation ID number. You use an activation wizard to provide the installation ID number to Microsoft either through a secure transfer over the Internet, or by telephone. A confirmation ID is sent back to your machine to activate your product.

The installation ID number includes an encrypted form of the product ID and a hardware hash, or checksum. None of the information collected during product activation will be used to personally identify you. The confirmation ID is simply an unlocking code for the Windows XP installation on that particular PC.

If you overhaul your computer by replacing a substantial number of hardware components, it may appear to be a different PC. You may have to reactivate Windows XP. If this should occur, you can call the telephone number displayed on the activation screen to reactivate the software.

So basically, this answers my question.

You can reinstall WinXP on a new hardware (harddrive) after uninstalling the same from the old hardware (harddrive). I would be asked to reactivate Windows XP and I may be required to call Microsoft.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Trends, Predictions and Lists for 2007-2008

First of all, Wish you a Happy New Year 2008. May this year bring you prosperity and peace.

Btw, this is my first post for this year :). I really wanted to post on Jan 1st, 2008, but never really had the time. In fact, this post I started writing on Jan 3rd, but it is still under progress until the point you are reading this now :).

I am astounded to see the number of lists, trends and predictions that people in the internet have come up with.

There are all kinds of list. Some of them that caught my eye have a title which resembles one of them below. But there are a lot more.
- Blog performance and traffic metrics
- Top blogs for 2007
- Top Technology trends for 2008
- Technology predictions for 2008
- Top Products of the year
- Inovative products of the year

The list goes on and on in various forms. I am sure these list have existed for the past few years, but it is more evident and visible because of news and blog aggregation sites like Techmeme, Blogrunner, etc.

I have been bookmarking these lists, trends, predictions, etc. But I thought let me also consolidate all of these in one single place for my sake. So here it goes.

I have basically taken (copy'n'pasted) only the articles that were highlighted in Techmeme River and I have mentioned them in the order of their appearance. And not necessarily these represent all of them.

Karen D. Schwartz / The Best Money-Saving Technologies of 2007
Jane Wakefield / BBC: The technology with impact 2007
Royal Pingdom: The major incidents on the internet in 2007
PC World: Scorecard: What Came True, What Didn't in 2007
PC World: The 25 Most Innovative Products of the Year
Wilson Rothman / Gizmodo: Amazon's Best of 2007 Is Part Duh, Part Huh?
Garett Rogers / Googling Google: Google Predicitons, 2008 — Tis the season for everyone …
Philipp Lenssen / Google Blogoscoped: Google in 2008 — There's no all-knowing glass bowl in reach …
Michael Calore / Wired News: Top of the Swaps: P2P's Most-Traded Movies, TV and Songs of 2007
Computerworld: Opinion: The 25 most innovative products of the year
[*] Ionut Alex Chitu / Google Operating System: 2007 Metrics — Last year, when I posted some stats for this blog …
BBC: Making history — The last 12 months have been one of the best years …
Ionut Alex Chitu / Google Operating System: Top Google Apps in 2007
Sydney Morning Herald: Ten things that will change your future
Jeremy Toeman / Jeremy Toeman's LIVEdigitally: Technology Predictions for 2008 — I've seen lots of Top 10 lists …
Jim Courtney / Skype Journal: Eight 2007 “Non-Skype” Technology Recognitions
Ryan Block / Engadget: Predictions for 2008? — Engadgetdamus bids you greetings.
Michael Arrington / TechCrunch: 2008: Web 2.0 Companies I Couldn't Live Without
Web Strategy by Jeremiah Owyang: A Complete List of the Many Forms of Web Marketing for 2008
John Battelle / John Battelle's Searchblog: Predictions 2008 — Has it been a whole year?
Steve Rubel / Micro Persuasion: 2008 Digital Trends Part II: Living Room 2.0
Susan Mernit / Susan Mernit's Blog: Look back: Social Media moments & milestones to remember from 2007
BBC: Technologies on the rise in 2008 — A number of technologies …
Gina Trapani / Lifehacker: Free Tools to Manage New Year's Resolutions [Feature]
Ernesto / TorrentFreak: Top 10 Most Pirated Movies and TV Shows of 2007
Marshall Kirkpatrick / ReadWriteWeb: What's Next on the Web: a ReadWriteWeb Toolkit for 2008
Andy / 2008 predictions: Newspaper video will die
Saul Hansell / Bits: New Questions for a New Year
Jason Lee Miller / WebProNews: 28 Things Didn't Happen In 2007 — A lot of predictions …
Glenn Derene / Popular Mechanics: Macworld 2008 Prediction: Apple's MacBook Plus Tablet Laptop The Best Links 2007 — For the fourth year running …
Phil Windley's Technometria: Top Ten IT Conversations Shows for 2007
Steve N. / The StartUp Blog at PartnerUp: Complete List of 2007 Web / Technology Acquisitions
Dion Hinchcliffe / Enterprise Web 2.0: 12 predictions for Enterprise Web 2.0 in 2008