Tag Archives: Reviews

LinkedIn Profile Photos could have waited

I am a LinkedIn user for a long time now. I like it, but feel that they can improve a lot with the feature set. LinkedIn hass added profile pictures. The last feature addition that I heard/observed was adding a Facebook Like “How you know this contact” with a few other things. I don’t mind professionals adding their pictures to their LinkedIn profiles, but I think there are lot of other features that should have been prioritized. Here is my short feature wishlist for LinkedIn (not in any order).

1) Right now I can choose to share/hide my contacts from other contacts globally only. I would like to see this feature per user specific. I like to share my entire network with others, but some of my contacts do not share their network. I would like to ‘unshare’ my network with them.

2) This has been said many times, but I’ll still say it again – API, API and API. Open up!

3) Ability to create/manage groups.

Reliance India Call

I started using them soon after they launched. They had really cheap deals at that time (less than 10 cents per minute for india). I never had any major issues with them so far. But I still don’t like them.

First of all, they chose a long confusing domain name. I don’t have them bookmarked, so I generally end up at another similar domain name (hint swap last wo words of the actual domain name).

I could never thougth that such a big company like Reliance would indulge in Black Hat SEO practices. Click Here to find it yourself. It is disgusting that they are following such practices.

There were a couple of another things I found about them through Google. They are very easily hackable. I remmember that they used to charge ‘tax’ on the pre-paid service, but they do not anymore. I saw a complaint by Adaniki Narasimha (why would someone leave his sap.com email address to be abused by spammers?) that the tax Reliance charges is undue and is probably not paid to the Government. This seems to be correct as Reliance stopped charging tax, but what about the money they already charged customers? I know people like me would just talk about it and do nothing because it isn’t a huge sum (may be $20 atmost). If there is any attorney pursuing this issue or intend to do so, feel free to contact me and I can try to help you with providing information and perhaps proof that they charged tax.

While writing the post, I found something funny and interesting, which also suggests that they used to charge tax. Read this and this post. Second post is really funny. I would have probably added – Tina Bhabhiji ko Namaskar aur Mukesh Bhaiya ko pyar :) (Reliance wasn’t split back in 2004)

I hope this post helps people know more about Reliance. I feel really happy when my Ajmeri Baba and Peer Syed Sahib posts get comments that enlighten people with personal experiences, like-

Hey, see when ur become emotional and see ur loved one going away from u, that tiem u do anything to hold them back, i also this ad and called and gave every money he asked for… i gave $30,000 (usa) to pundit maharaj…. but nothing happend…. i dont if i dont get my money back but i dont want someone else to do the same thing as i did…. and now i cant see thsi guy( pundit maharaj) haveing fun wiht my money…. NEED HELP CAN SOMEONE HELP ME…. PLEASE………

Yahoo Ads Beta – Review

What happens when you try to implement something real quick inorder to compete with a competitor? You end up with Yahoo Ads Beta.

I applied for them a cpl. of weeks ago (thanks 2 Puneet for letting me know about it) and I got approved yesterday (or may be day before). So, I thought I’d give them a shot. I read the TOS and found some lame stuff:

9g from here

you are a US-based business and you are operating Your Site solely for viewing and use by users within the US; and

How the hell do you operate a site “solely” for viewing and use by users within the US on the Internet? Should I ban all the darnnn non-US IP addresses? Thank god they didn’t ask me to check if each of my viewer is a valid US citizen or Permanent Resident.

11 l (as in ‘L’)

Abuse of Services. You agree not to:
…..
display all or part of the Ad Unit to any user located outside the US

Well……can non-US bots view the Ad…?…….please please let them…….ok may be just one glimpse……

To Yahoo – Please implement your Ads like this

check if user = US-located
if yes
display Ad
else
Get lost you looser, don’t waste the bloody bandwidth, you aren’t worth a penny.

And it will be great if publishers can customize the last message.

I haven’t read Adsense’s TOS lately, but I don’t think they have TOS like this (or may be they do 😐 )

Anyways, I somehow manage to make myself understand about that TOS, I agreed to it, that I won’t ask any non-US to view the Ads, if they do, then its Yahoo’s lack of implementation. I agreed to remove Adsense from my site and created a Yahoo Ad. I didn’t miss my Adsense, cos the Yahoo Ad is a clone of Adsense.

Yahoo Ad Preview

They use javascript for to display Ad preview and it is neat. They also have a “Select Your Ad Code” button for those, I guess, who do not know how to select text in a textarea.

They have a Ad Targeting section, where you can choose a category and a sub-category and can even display those Targeted Ads to a certain page or whole site or a subdomain. I think its good. Its more like an addition to the contextual Ads. Here is what the tag line says: “You can display ads that are based on your users’ interests to complement your site’s contextually matched ads.

And then there is Ad Blocking, where you can block certain domains, usual competitors n stuff.

They also have a Content Setup section, where you can:

Embed Y!Q into your site. What is Y!Q?

Y!Q lets you search from any web page you’re on so you don’t have to interrupt your workflow to find more information. Traditional web searches force you to go to a specific search page and type in a query.

It’s the thing that Y! has introduced in its latest YIM. where you highlight some text and can see the results in a small pop-up-like-a-thing.

They also have Add Your RSS Feed to My Yahoo!, which is nothing but just adding your XML feed to viewer’s my.yahoo.com. Right now they don’t have RSS advertising, but it seems like they are working on it.

Link to a Yahoo! Map from Your Web Site is another lame thing that they have in there, which is simply creating a link to Y! maps from your site.

Y!Q, RSS to My Yahoo and Links to Y! Maps don’t pay u anything.

Payment options are more or less same, but they also allow you to transfer funds to your overture a/c. I do have Adsense and Adwords a/cs but not sure if they allow that or not.

Reports are more or less similar to Adsense. There is one feature called URL Tracking.

What it does is: Track the performance of the ads on your site by domain, directory, or page. which is similar to pages in Adsense. They also have “categories” which are similar to Channels in Adsense.

My problems aren’t over yet……

I backed up my Adsense code and clicked the “Select Your Ad Code” button on Yahoo publisher to replace my Adsense.

I put the code like:

Original Code

and what I see on the site is:

On IE

IE

On FF

FF

did I miss something?

I checked the source of me site and what I see is:

ctxt_ad_partner = \’1214287163\’;
ctxt_ad_section = \’6620\’;
ctxt_ad_bg = \’FFFFFF\’;
ctxt_ad_width = 468;
ctxt_ad_height = 60;
ctxt_ad_bc = \’D40000\’;
ctxt_ad_cc = \’FFD800\’;
ctxt_ad_lc = \’D40000\’;
ctxt_ad_tc = \’000000\’;
ctxt_ad_uc = \’7C0000\’;

Where did these \ come from (Is it Apache?)? On further investigation, found that Adsense uses ” instead of ‘ …..but I can’t change their code, so dunno if I am thinking in right direction or not.

Acc. to their FAQ:

When will ads begin appearing on my site?

Your Yahoo! Publisher Network ads will usually begin appearing within seconds of pasting the ad code into your web pages. If no ads are available, public service announcements will be displayed. If you prefer, you may select a Substitute Color that matches your web page background so that a solid color block appears in the meantime instead.

Note: My Substitute color field has nothing in it.

It has been more than an hour and the Ads still don’t work. May be they think I am a bloody non-US located? I don’t think that is the case, but who knows. I suspect its just the lack of testing (oh well its in Beta, y am I cribbing) and may be some of the javascript used on my site is killing the Ads? But Adsense works fine. Also why the hell it shows 2 different things on IE n FF?

I am gonna switch back to Adsense and report the matter to Y! guys.

Bunty Aur Babli

I had very high expectations from the movie, but they were destroyed by the reviews pouring in from everywhere. I adjusted my expectations to a lower level and went to watch the movie. I’d have to say that the movie was fun!! It was different from the routine B’wood movies. BaB is not one of the most logical Bollywood movies, but is an entertainer. Aaina and I laughed throughout the movie along with the _almost_ housefull hall. Housefull is something not so common in theatres in USA. I was surprised to hear a seeti (whistle) in the theatre, when both the B’s started dancing together in Kajra Re. You can read the detailed review here (not written by me.)

B’s and Rani were great!! I really liked how they _tried_ to recreate 70’s style. The background songs from 70’s movies (mostly Big B’s) was a good idea. I also loved the way, they caught the _real_ India. Cinematography and the sets/locations were excelent as they portrayed the India I know. Narrow streets, a bunch of wires on the poles, the houses they lived in, the dust, the stray dogs, dhabbas, railway stations, buses…etc. Dialogues were well written and the actor’s timed them very well. It is really great that the movie was left open ended (chance for a sequel). I’d certainly love to watch Bunty, Babli aur Pappu.

The things which could have been avoided or added were: Dhadak Dhadak, Nach Baliye, Chup Chup Ke songs. They slowed down the movie’s pace, Chup Chup Ke in particular. Aishwarya could have been incorporated in the movie in a better way (say she was a victim or a crook?). The love story Big B talked about, didn’t make much sense (with the song.)

On the whole, it is not as great as DDLJ, but you would still like to watch it atleast 2-3 times.

Acc. to Taran Adarsh

On the whole, BUNTY AUR BABLI just doesn’t have the meat to enthrall the moviegoers. At the box-office, the film has taken an excellent start due to two reasons — the Yash Raj brand and the fact that the two Bachchans have been teamed for the first time. While the first weekend will witness ‘House Full’ boards outside the single screens as well as the multiplexes, the film doesn’t have the power to sustain after the initial curiosity subsides. Monday onwards, the collections should come crashing down. Disappointing!

I don’t agree with it. I think the collections for the movie would go steady. There might be a slight drop (due to negative reviews) but it would be nullified by the comments from people who have watched the movie. Moreover, Bunty Aur Babli’s music will gain more popularity.

I think Yash Raj Films have saved a hukum ka ikka so far and it is the promo for the song Kajra Re. A lot of people were surprised to see Aish in the movie. It is because, they never released Kajra Re’s promo (although they released Big B’s BnB music video). Only the people who took keen interest in the movie or in B’wood in general were aware of Aish’s presence in the movie. It seems like that the promo for the song has been saved for a time when the movie’s ratings/collections will go down. Once the trailer is repeatedly shown on the TV, Aish and both Bs dancing together in the promo would make ppl flock around the theatres once again.

Taran Adarsh has rated the movie 1.5/5 which is very low. He rated V-Z 4/5. I would definetly rate BaB above V-Z as an entertainer (not sure about the stats.) I’d give it 7.5/10.

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