Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Places to travel in Sydney - Day 2 - Manly Beach, The Ferry Journey and the Long Walk

If you don’t know, water-transport is pretty popular in Australia. Around Sydney there are Ferry Stations to reach other points in the country. One such point of attraction where you can reach through the Ferry, is the ‘Manly beach’ . It takes a 40 minute long Ferry ride from Circular Quay ( very near to The Opera House). 

The Ferry Journey

We had to take an initial 10 minute Ferry ride from Darling Harbour to reach the Circular Quay. There were all-day passes for 23$ available in the station, we get to use it any number of times in any bus or ferry for 24 hour. Once we reached the Circular Quay Ferry station we took the 40 minute long Ferry to the Manly beach. The journey was a beauty, we get to see the Opera house up close in a different view. The Ferry stops right near the manly beach. There is a 10 minutes walk to the beach.On the way there are several shops and activities that tourists would love to explore. Surfing, is a common activity in Manly beach, many shops nearby sell the accessories for Surfing. 

Reaching the Manly Beach

We reached the beach very quickly and enjoyed the view for sometime. There were people 200 meters into the beach waiting for the waves to surf.  This was the most common activity there. 

Our target was to reach the tip of the distant hill in this photo. We did reach.

Walking to the Hills

We continued walking through the costal border to the Blue-drive area, in about 20 minutes we walked through a smaller beach where people were engaged in scuba diving and making barbecue. Expecting a breath-taking view from a nearby hill we continued, taking the uphill journey.  Again it was 20 minutes walk up the hill through a small walk-way among the dense bushes. Finally we reach the highest place on that area, from where we had amazing view of the Manly beach and a whole large portion of the city behind it. We decided to walk back to the Circular Quay following the most accessible path as close as possible to the costal border. Now, that decision really paid off. Luckily, the walk-ways through the bushy region are well maintained and we had the chance to be quite close to the nature. At times we’d reach residential towns in the area and disappear into the nearest walk-ways to the bushes. 

The beach with scuba diving 

A Surprising view of Collins Beach

Just as we to a steep slope among the walk-way we were surprised to find ourselves in the most beautiful place we’ve seen so far in Australia ‘The Collins Beach’. Its very small beach covered with trees and hill on both sides yet providing an excellent view of the beach. There is a spring water flowing through the rocks in the corner and joining to the sea. We spent a while there for lunch. 
We continues to walk till we reached the Manly Beach Ferry Point. 
Collin's beach

Panorama shot of the collins beach

Ferry Back to Circular Quay

We took a Ferry back to the Circular Quay. Now, this journey was better than the one we had in the morning. It was a great weather and we could see the beautiful sunset near the bridge and The Opera House on all its glory. 

Beautiful, but not real. Possibly a prank by someone.

View from the hill tip

View from the hill-top

Reaching residential towns in between

Spring in the collin's beach

Sights on our walk back to the Ferry point

Another sight on our walk back to the Ferry point

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Places to travel in Sydney - Day 1 - The Opera House

If you are in Sydney the first place to see is the iconic Opera House. Does it take a whole-day visit? Well not really if you're in a rush, you could just have a glance and move on to other places like Botanical garden or Bondi beach. But if you have time and you love eating/drinking you've enough things to keep you pinned to the place for a day. There were two of us in the journey, and we started from our apartment in Pyrmont, Sydney.  Our journey started by 11 am . It was a 20 minutes walk. 

The hop-on hop-off buses every 10 minutes ( 40$ for 24 hour pass)

In Sydney there are red hop-on hop-off buses that circle through the main attractions in the city every 10 minutes. It costs 40$ for a 24 hours pass. You can hop-on and hop-off any number of times. We were tempted for the take one of those but we finally decided to take the walk and reach Opera. 

Walking to the places around the Opera House

It's better not to go near the Opera House as soon as you spot it. Keep it for later in the evening. Just take some selfies from far with the Opera House as the background and walk over to The Rocks an area near by the Opera House and climb over to the huge bridge near-by when you finish exploring the Rocks. 

The Rocks 

This is place a with lots of exhibitions, stalls and small but very good hotels/bars. You get to see a variety of rare stalls with Australian-crafts like Boomerangs and Fresh water pearl jewellery. You could walk around and enjoy seeing the stalls or buy some stuffs that interests you.

Climbing the Bridge

Way to the bridge top
 There is a special program called 'Brige Climb' that takes you to the top of the massive bridge ( that is a paid trip costing around 150$). But, thats not what I meant here, you actually have a normal stair to the bridge and from the top you'll get a better view of the Opera House for another selfie. From there walk through the fly-over road extended from the bridge that leads to the Opera-House. 

Selfie from the bridge 

Finally reaching the Opera House

Once we reached the Opera House, we were amazed by it's architectural expertise and the way it stood surrounded by water on 3 sides.. There is a long Opera Kitchen and Opera Bar just in front of the building. In the Kitchen you can get a variety of special seafood and other amusing delicacies.  In the Opera Bar most of the tables were filled with people enjoying the view. The place have as many Silver Sea Gulls as humans, they are typical chip stealers and come near you very casually expecting to have a pick from your meal. There, near the waters, enjoying the architectural marvel and the beautiful sunset you can relax and spend a few hours having tasty food and drinks.

Bridge view from Opera House


Thursday, 5 June 2014

How To Split A Pdf File Without any Online tools

The solution I'm going to describe striked me just as I was impatiently waiting for a 50MB pdf to be uploaded to an online tool that can split my pdf and give me the portion I need as another downloadable file. Why the mess? See below:

Chrome Saves the Day!

If you have Chrome there is an Option in Chrome to 'Print to PDF'. All you have to do is the following:

Right click the PDF document and Open With -> Chrome

In the Chrome go to File -> Print 

Choose the Destination as 'Save as PDF' 

Choose the Pages you need to print Eg: 0-200

Click Save.

Done. Now you have split your pdf successfully without uploading it online or downloading a separate software to do it. :)
Split PDF files Without any Online Tools

Saturday, 23 November 2013

How to get Keynote, Pages and Numbers for free in older Macs

On October 2013 Apple made the whole Mac OS X free and gave away the cool apps Keynote, Pages and Numbers for free with the OS. Anyone who purchased a Mac after October 1st 2013 has an option to get this deal. But, sadly the buyers before October 1st were left out. They still have to pay to get it from app store. If you are one among them, worry not. I am going to share the trick to get absolutely free on your old Mac OS X machine. All you have to do is download the Trial version of iWork suite for free from any 3rd party provider. Install it and then, you'll be shown and option to upgrade it to full version for free in your App Store. Follow the simple steps to do this : 

1. Download the iWork '09 Trial (dmg file) from Softpedia link . Click Download and click External Mirror 1 . You have to download this from softpedia because Apple doesn't support Trial downloads of Apps any longer. 

2. Go to your System Preferences -> Security & Privacy -> General -> Change Allow apps downloaded from  to Anywhere

3. When the download is complete double click the dmg file and install the iWork '09 Trial. 

4. Once the installation is finished wait for a few seconds and open your App Store in Mac and click the Updates section. Now you can see that 3 new updates for Pages, Keynote and Numbers appear on the list. Update them and you can enjoy all 3 incredible apps free for life.

Get Keynote, Pages and Numbers for free in older macs

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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... 

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