Sunday, 22 September 2013

How to Learn anything in 20 hours with these Time Management Secrets.

Are you a crazy about learning new things? Have your recent lifestyle made you busy all day long and you no longer get to do what you like the most - learning?  Now you spent the precious little time you get after all the busy works on the pursuit of finding new time

management secrets that might magically help you find time to do all u ever wanted to do someday. Well, accept it you're never gonna that time-pausing machine. 


However, on my search I've found out some interesting resources that could help you make the most of your time. Josh Kaufman is the name to remember. I stumbled upon his TED talk video one day, the video gave me some great insights. 


At the end of the video he demonstrates how he learned to play a musical instrument from scratch in 20 hours. That demo play being the end of his 20th hour. And few days after that Ramit Sethi ( author of a bestseller book ) blogged about him. 


I got to know more personally about him from the blog. He really is an awesome guy. Ramit says :
"Josh is so skilled at mental frameworks, he was THE person I called when I was stuck on a very specific part of building one of my flagship courses. "

The blog also mentioned that Josh had written two books. The titles were



I've seen the first title on most of the book stalls, but thought of it as another piece of crap time management strategy. This guy is really good and he'd produced results that anybody can DO, the best part is he himself have practice what he preach.

The Personal MBA : Master the Art of Business

This book title is not a very eye-catching word like 'Think and Grow Rich' nor funny like ' The monk who sold his Ferrari' that people would be attracted to the book to just have look inside. I felt the title is rather very boring for an ordinary guy, a business person, or even an entrepreneur in the same magnitude. People might have first impression about the book as an average level businessperson's guide. Well, that's wrong it's about improving your own life as well as your business ( both start-ups and grown-ups) . Plenty of practically proven hacks on time management, improving your personality, social interaction and managing a entire business. Check out two of the cover reviews published on the book:

"This book goes far beyond business: I used the marketing, sales, and communication principles in this book to complete my PhD and land a highly competitive postdoc and professorship at a world-class research university.What ever you do for a living, this book will help you do it even better."
Dr. Zachary Gagnon, Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University 


"I graduated with an MBA in 2005 before I encountered The Personal MBA, but I still felt like I didn't know anything about business. In retrospect, I wish I had read this book before enrolling in an MBA program—it would've helped me be more mindful while completing my degree. Who knows . . . I might have skipped the MBA completely. This is easily the best foundational business book available."
Roger Hui, Technical Account Manager, RedHat, Inc. 

The book is worth it's weight in gold. Don't waste time anymore. Get a copy now!



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Saturday, 27 July 2013

Trivandrum Exclusive : Free SMS Application To Get Theater Details For a Movie

I myself had several times pondered in online news sites and Google to find the theaters playing a specific movie. Google never seem to be very specific for our a local region say movies in
'Trivandrum'. Even on the drive connecting to mobile internet and search for the 'now playing' movies and their theaters is a hassle. This prompted me to use my coding skill for a day to develop an application the benefits everybody happen to go by this situation.

Bringing Back SMS To the rescue. 
With WhatsApp gaining dominance, We've almost forgotten about normal SMS. But when all you require is few words answer for your 1 word query, I think SMS is the most simple and easy solution. 

  • The service is offered for free, but standard national sms charges might apply at your end (good thing if you still do an sms offer).
  • Currently as the service is offered only for Trivandrum.

Yes! that's it just sms

@popcorn movie_name to 9266592665 

... and you're done. You'll get the details of the theatres playing the movie in Trivandrum.

I've added a tint of intelligence to the application for understanding very common spelling mistakes and guess the right solution.


Thursday, 11 July 2013

Java : Get the Values In An Annotation Using Reflection

Recently I was researching on implementing lucene search (using
Hibernate Search). Although I found success with it, I wanted to
automate the process of passing the fields that are indexed and their
respective index names. Hibernate Search uses a bunch of annotations
in the getter to specify their index name and filters used.

My Requirement
I want to go through all the 'Field' annotation present in every
method defined inside my class and get the value of the 'name' field
from it. Sometimes 'Field' is present inside as a nested annotation
inside 'Fields'.
Here the tricky part is where you've to set

  • YourAnnotation ann = method.getAnnotation(YourAnnotation.class)

and get an the annotation object from it.

Here is an example problem:


Here is the solution:


And here is my output... 



Thursday, 25 April 2013

How To Install Maven In Windows 7 64-bit

In today's programming culture it's essential to know some more stuffs apart from the language you code with. I learned the importance of this insight as I was flipping through the book 'Well Grounded Java Developer' . I've come across the title of this book several times only to overlook it meaning  in depth, murmuring 'Ha! another book for java newbie'. But it turned out that I was totally wrong and it taught me a lot about programming (including Java) and other things like test drivent development, build and continuous integration (maven) etc. All these were the buzz terms I've been hearing a lot for the last one year but left unlearned so far. The WGJD was an awesome start-off.

Maven, is one concept I got wrong from the beginning, we've bee using it at our work place as an eclipse plugin for around a year now and I was under the notion that it's 'just a plugin'. Later from the book I understood, maven is a continuous integration tool that's initially run as an application itself via command line and once you get familiar with the cmd usage, you catch up easier with the maven plugins written for IDEs. Below are the ice-breaker steps to get maven running on your windows machine. 

Environment 


  • Operating System : Windows 7 64 bit
  • Java 1.7 installed and path configured in environment variables

Steps To Install Maven In Windows

1. Download the binary (bin) file of maven from : http://maven.apache.org/download.cgi

2. Extract it to C:\

Note: As in many Java/JVM-related software installations, it pays to not
install Maven into a directory with spaces in its name, because you might
get PATH and CLASSPATH errors. For example, if you're using a MS Windows
operating system, don't install Maven into a directory that looks like C:\Program
Files\Maven\.

3. Add the M2_HOME For Windows-based operating systems, you'll add something like this:
M2_HOME=C:\apache-maven-3.0.3

4. Maven needs the Java JDK to run. Any version greater than 1.5 is fine. You'll also need to make sure that your JAVA_HOME environment variable is set—this has probably already been set if you have Java installed. You'll also need to be able to execute Maven-related commands from anywhere in your command line, so you should set the M2_HOME/bin directory to be in your PATH

5. Take the cmd : 

For Windows-based operating systems, you'll need to add this: 

PATH=%PATH%;%M2_HOME%\bin

Note that the above lines have to be entered every time when u start cmd to run maven. The best way is to add the property directly in the PATH field in My Computer (Righ Click) >  Properties> Choose Advanced Tab > Environment Variable.


You can now execute Maven (mvn) with its -version parameter to make sure the basic
install has worked.

mvn -version

Why Should I use Maven ? 

Previously, in java projects, when we required the apis from another framework we used to download the jar files from their respective websites and add it to the lib folder in the java project. This is tiresome process, sometimes your newly downloaded jar will have some dependency and need jar's from some other projects to work well. Maven simply automate the major portion of this task by using a pom.xml file. In the pom.xml file you can just specify the name and version of jar files and maven will fetch the same and it's dependencies from the repository. This is the crux of java but there is a lot more you can do from here. 
You can refer the book Well Grounded Java Developer from Manning to learn more about building your project from the pom.xml and doing several other operations.

Resources 


1. Installing Maven - Mkyong.com
2.  Mavens Official Website

3. The Well Grounded Java Developer  ( affiliate link ) 

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Is MacBook Air Good For Programming / Blogging ?

I'm a passionate java developer who just migrated from a Windows PC netbook ( Dell mini ) to a 13 inch MacBook Air. Before the netbook I owned a Dell inspirion 1501. I'm quite a bit of an avid blogger as well. I purchased Dell mini just as it was launched hoping that it's compact and mobile architecture would solve all of my need as a programmer and a writer. Unfortunately it turned out that it was a worthless device.The rest of the story goes...



Do Not Compare a Netbook With MacBook Air

MacBook's astonishing features far exceeds anything that of a normal Netbook.

Before


Buying a netbook for programming and blogging was one of the biggest blunders I ever made on choosing a machine. The screen was 11 inch and clumsy icons of the Windows were a disgrace all the time.The tightly arranged keys in the keyboard made typing a pain. It's slow Intel Atom Processor is too sluggish to run even VLC player.


After 

The Mac's backlit spacious keyboard layout, 1440x900 resolution display and i5 process combines with the all awesome Mac OS X to give the best possible computing experience to the user. Applications work blazing fast and there are hundreds of easy keyboard shortcuts to make it even faster.


Why MacBook Air is Great For Programming ?

Is'nt it too small to code ?

I really couldn't do much java development in Dell mini. From my previous catastrophic experience with a netbook having small screen. I was hesitant to buy another one with just slightly larger screen. My major doubt was - "Is Macbook Air 13 in good for Java Programming ?". Once I got it in hand and installed Eclipse to code I felt I had more space than my 15.6 inch HP ( at workplace) ProBook and 15.6 inch HP Sleekbook (dad's) I frequently used for coding.  If you have the same question, 'Yes!' It's great for java programming. Go ahead. I've been running git, maven, java and what not everything for a long time. 

Reasons:

In Mac there is a 'Full Screen View' option for every application. This hides all other windows and fills the entire screen with the single window of that application. This combined with the 1440 x 900 resolution give plenty of screen to work on.
The intuitive trackpad helps to navigate quickly between applications and menus. They recognise a bunch of gestures that make the need for a mouse totally irrelevant. The three finger slide has helped me a lot to slide from one screen to read the documentation to the other screen for programming. 


Why MacBook Air is Great For Blogging ?

It's an awe inspiring machine that elites your creativity just by the look and feel of it.

  • Long battery backup : You could carry around your Macbook the whole day and write without the distraction of searching for a power source. It got 8 - 10 hours of battery life in one charge. No other laptop comes as close as this yet.
  • The Full Screen View option work so perfectly well that it prevents any other application from bothering us.
  • Back-lit keyboard and SSD hardisk helps you write in the dark : Many time's I get new ideas and creative mood just before I go to sleep . I've always found it difficult to find the keys in other laptops to type in something. It's even more difficult when you are trying to blog.The keyboard automatically light's up if it detects low external light. This was a blessing for me. In other laptops I find it difficult to use laptop in bed as keeping it for a prolonged period in the couch or bed could cover the fan exhaust and overheat the laptop. The SSD used as harddisk eliminates all kinds of noisy fans and grills beneath the Macbook. It's just a single body just like a tablet or mobile phone. You can keep it in any kind of surface and use it. 
  • You will never need a mouse again : smart gesture recognition of the trackpad you can completely avoid mouse and eliminate an extra hardware that never contributed to your writing.


Synergy - an added benefit of premium quality.

There is a magic that the ssd + slim design + long battery life makes happen!

The solid-state hard-disk of the mac enable very quick read and write functionality. You can wake from hibernate in a blink of an eye. It just feel like switching on the screen of your mobile. Yes! it just works like a mobile. Combining this power of long battery backup, this gives it a magic effect, a mobile-phone like utility value. Gone are the day's you've to wait to resume back from a hibernate sessions or even restart your mac. Say, you get a 2 minute time gap while waiting for coffee, open your mac in a snap and add few lines to your next blog article. The point is : it totally eliminates the reluctance you have to take out your heavy laptop and sluggishly resume from the last hibernate session. 


If You Are Looking For a good Ultrabook go for MacBook Air

Ultrabooks are nothing but just an attempt to reinvent MacBook Air by other brands.


Ultrabook was a concept put forward ( and trademarked ) by Intel inspiring computer manufacturers to make high quality machines with newest Intel processors. Intel was actually inspired by Apple's MacBook Air and the way it revolutionised computing. The ultimate marketing point is to make stylish high-end ultrabooks and sell it for premium price like Apple does. But I'd say if you've got the money to buy the high-priced Ultrabooks you could just add up a few bucks and get yourself a Macbook . I say this because none of the OS could achieve the perfection and user experience that Apple has given. They're leading by tailoring the operating system to work most efficiently with the hardware. 


Used by Veterans in  Worldwide 

JK Rowling is one of the most popular authors in the world. She has written all time bestselling books like Harry Potter and Casual Vacancy. Recently she announced to the public that MacBook Air has changed her life and that she has written from almost everywhere including some very strange places.

Let's hear it from another expert . MacBook is used by the most awesome people in the world. Here is something that testifies this. A statement posted by Sergey Brin on hearing the death news of Steve. 
"From the earliest days of Google, whenever Larry and I sought inspiration for vision and leadership, we needed to look no farther than Cupertino. Steve, your passion for excellence is felt by anyone who has ever touched an Apple product (including the macbook I am writing this on right now). And I have witnessed it in person the few times we have met.
On behalf of all of us at Google and more broadly in technology, you will be missed very much. My condolences to family, friends, and colleagues at Apple."


Need more clarifications on Macbook Air?

I was pretty frantic until I got it in hand, I'd be screwed if the device is not up to my expectation. I wanted to reassure any other person frantic like me is making the right decision.  If you've more questions or doubts about what Macbook Air can do ask me in the comments section, I'm happy to help you personally. If you're impressed you can purchase a brand new Macbook Air for the best price from amazon

Update on 24th Nov 2013, after 8 months of use-experience: 
This is awesome, I can code and blog from almost anywhere and even if I get as little as 10 minutes while waiting for coffee, I can bring back my mac from sleep in few seconds and finish a chunk of my work in that gap (basically I code, read or blog). I can imagine it's pretty overwhelming to hear this, but trust me this thing have changed my world upside down. It's like saying, "I am batman" then disappearing to the darkness to mac and coming back as normal as you were. "So this is what it feels like". 


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Monday, 18 March 2013

Top 10 Features Of Samsung Galaxy S4 That Overtake Tablets and Smartphones

Samsung Galaxy S4
The Samsung Galaxy S4 is launched with terrific features that exceeds the features in any other smartphone or may be even tablets available in market today. I'd say, they've focused more on the software side of the device this time and brought in several intutive features to make life fun n simple. Some of the interesting ones are: 


Instantly preview and speeddial your contacts


  • Preview videos by hovering finger above the screen.
  •  Instantly preview and speeddial your contacts (even when you hover on top of the dial pad without touching the screen).
  • Recognize your eye movement to know when to pause and play the video.


  • Recognize information from images. This is one feature I always want and believed to be the future of computing. It helps recognize the information in newspapers, visiting cards etc.

  • Touch and use even with gloves.

  • Use multiple phones as speaker . No cellular data, Wi-Fi access point or bluetooth required!

  • Record a bit of audio when you take a photo.
  • Use the front and rear camera simultaneously during video conferencing and video recording.

  • S Translator application in the phone can translate upto 9 languages while real time messaging as well as for vocabulary lookup. 
  • Control your T.V. with Samsung WatchON app and make you living room experience more hassle-free.










Popular Comments and Titles bestowed on Samsung S4



"Samsung S4 Makes Google Less Important" (link) - BusinessInsider

"Are Tablets Mobile? The Samsung Galaxy S4 Could Finally End The Debate" (link) - TechCrunch

"Did Apple just endorse the Samsung Galaxy S4?" (link) - CNET

"How Samsung Galaxy S4 Will Compete With Sony PlayStation 4" (link)   - Forbes

Thursday, 3 January 2013

ICFAI Sikkim Distance MBA Review From My Experience

After a long research I joined for the ICFAI distance MBA program in 2012. Now I've completed 2 semesters ( as of 2013 ). I wanted to write this review so that people who are looking for a good MBA program can get a hand-on review about the distance MBA offered by the ICFAI Sikkim. I've been through all the cycles of this program and this review might help you make the right choice about the program. This article presents my own ( and unbiased ) view of the program and is in no way associated with the course provider.


Is the MBA ICFAI Sikkim Approved By UGC? 

As per the latest AICTE regulations, a distance education program must have the approval of a joint commission of 
  • UGC- University Grant Commission
  • AICTE- All Indian Council for Technical Education
  • DEC- Distance Education Council
ICFAI Sikkim doesn't have this approval (don't get disappointed, it's not over yet). Only institutes and colleges affiliated to a University are required to take AICTE approval. So ICFAI being an independent University doesn't require AICTE approval ( more) . They are allowed to award certifications for distance education programs in all respect. 

The registration and Initial course material delivery 

The registration process was quick. One thing I came to know at that point was there are actually two universities offering MBA 

  • ICFAI Tripura - Difficult to study, same fee structure, same validity.
  • ICFAI Sikkim ( My choice ) - Curriculum is comparatively easier, same free structure, same validity. 

There is an option to pay the full course amount upfront or pay as installments over a period of 15 months. I went for the second option. In any case if you want to discontinue the program in between the agent have told that the course fee till that point of time will be charged and the rest will be refunded. You may continue the study even at a later point of time by paying the remaining amount.

The course materials were delivered on schedule via courier. I was really impressed by the quality of books included in the curriculum. There were both foreign authored books as well as a supplimentery guide for each subject. 


Examination and Results 


The exam registration is done online. We will get a student enrollment number after registration which is used for all further communications with the university. We can schedule our exams on any day with free slots in the mentioned time period. Each exam cost Rs. 500 . This is additional to the course fee. There are around 5 subjects for each semester. The questions were easy and can be answered by studying the supplementary textbooks itself. The results will be published after a month or so after the examination. If you want to schedule the exams in weekends, then it's better to ask  about the exam registration opening time beforehand from your agent as the weekend slot gets filled up quickly. After the completion of each semester we will get a qualification certificate via courier.


Class room sessions

Class room sessions are optional and are charged extra if chosen. I chose to attend the classes for the 1st semester and I felt that it was totally worth it. The professors were very good at handling the subject and classes were always on schedule. They cover the ICFAI mba supplementary textbooks on a scheduled basis and clear doubts at the practice questions given at the end of each lesson.

If you need free counselling or admission support send your contact info to : nanospeck0@gmail.com


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