Saturday, December 31, 2011

Cars of 2011: The Good and the Bad Ones

2011 has witnessed the debut of many varieties of cars, from affordable passenger cars to pricey SUVs and luxury ones. Some cars have been in the news for all the right reasons but some have not been so lucky. This year has seen the ups and downs of these cars and industry experts have given their opinions regarding these. Jagdish Khattar, MD Carnation Auto; BVR Subbu, Former Head Hyundai India and Hormazd Sorabjee, Editor Autocar India were asked by Economic Times about their opinion of the best and worst cars of 2011 and these were the names they took –


1) Hyundai Verna:

The new Hyundai Verna is a 7th generation automobile and is deemed to be the best of the Verna models till now. Its new features are to die for, say experts and users. Some of its stunning features are as follows - a sturdier chassis, which meets the U.S. and European standards, making it safer in case of collisions. Its ‘Fluidic Sculpture’ design gives it a superior look. Though it doesn’t have much cabin storage room and under-thigh support due to low positioning of seats, Verna still bags the list for one of the top cars in India. The Indian Verna has 2 varieties each- petrol and diesel. Gamma petrol and U2 diesel motors have 1.4 and 1.6 litres capacities respectively. The winning aspects of the diesel variety are its 126 Break Horse Power (BHP) and 26.5 KGM of torque, which are like no other in the market. Its features and performance make Verna truly deserve a spot among the top.

2) Mahindra XUV 500:

The Mahindra XUV 500 is any sports and outdoor lover’s paradise because it has the latest technology to help it become one among the top. It not only challenges other SUVs in the Indian market but also meets international standards and quality. Its stylish looks and strength are incomparable, at least in the Indian market. It has various features which make it note-worthy – it has projector headlamps, LED lights for daytime, a bigger front bumper with air dams and recessed fog lamps, excellent pick-up, speed and steering. Its bonus feature is a tidy and well-designed under-vehicle region, which is excellent for snow covered roads. It has a transverse engine and a 4-wheel drive layout. It also has a 2.2 litre diesel engine, apart from other dizzying features, which keeps it ahead of other SUVs in the Indian market. Though highly priced, this car is worth every penny.

3) Luxury Cars:

Luxury cars have slowly but steadily made their way into the Indian market. The list, though not exhaustive, consists of the best cars from all over the world, like – Mercedes Benz, Honda Accord, Audi, Maybach Exelero, BMW, Toyota Corolla, Renault Fluence and many others. Attractive EMIs for car loans have roped the Indian class to add a bit of snazz to their lifestyle. These high in class and comfort cars also come with diesel engine varieties, as preferred by current Indian market. Also, diesel engine cars provide better acceleration, speed, fuel efficiency and torque, when compared to petrol cars. According to ET, about 80 percent of the cars sold last year were of the diesel variety, including that of BMW, Audi and Mercedes. CRDi technology has made the diesel cars sales go up and are still growing. Also, various SUVs and luxury car manufactures are providing only the diesel varieties for the changing tastes of Indian customers.

4) Audi:

Audi is India’s 3rd biggest luxury car manufacturer, with speculated 40 percent increase in sales in 2012 and for good reasons. The Audi is ranked among the top luxury cars in India because of superior German technology and unmatched performance. Apart from obvious stylish looks and class factor, Audi is much more than just a pretty face. The newer models are more spacious, fuel efficient, with improved safety designs and better suspension symptoms. The 2.7 and 3 Turbo Diesel (TDI) engines are sure to keep diesel engine lovers happy. The diesel variants are no slow coaches for they give excellent speed in no time. Features like - Anti-theft Alarm System, Electronic Stability Program, Anti-lock Braking system and Servotronic for enhanced control over the car make Audi an unmatched player in the luxury car segment. Needless to say, this car is highly priced. The newest variant of Audi is going to be featured in the 2012 Delhi Auto Expo.

5) New Maruti Suzuki Swift:

New Maruti Suzuki Swift is available in diesel variants and perhaps is the best car in the passenger car segment, available at an attractive price. The newer version has improved features like – better looks and fuel efficiency. It is giving good competition to other hatchbacks, like Chevrolet Beat, Ford Figo and Volkswagen Polo. Fiat provides the 1.3 litre Multijet diesel engine, which provides great speed and torque. The K-series engines, with Macpherson strut suspension system, have been revamped with five manual gears. The interior is just as good as the exterior, with better shoulder and leg room.  The safety features are improved too with airbags and ABS (Anti-lock Braking System), EBD (Electronic Breakforce Distribution) and fog lights for misty times on the road. Maruti Suzuki cars occupy about 45 percent share of the Indian car market. The diesel variant of Swift has exhibited a 30 percent increase in its sales since its launch, which only indicates that diesel cars are here to stay.


1) Hyundai Eon:

Hyundai Eon has all the features to entice any Indian car lover because it has almost all the right features required in the concerned car segment. It has stylish looks and features but it lacks one very important element. It lags behind in the diesel engine section because of the small size of the car. Hyundai has recently launched a diesel variant but it will take time to test its metal. Since, Indian car lovers are looking exclusively at good diesel cars this year, it is difficult for them to wait for the new variety to be tested and tried. They have other diesel cars as alternatives, like – Swift Diesel and Indica Turbo Diesel DLX. These cars give Eon strong competition because of their strong brand presence in India. Hence, Eon will have to prove itself next year.

2) Honda Jazz:

Hyundai Jazz has features, with performance, to make Indian people buy it. However, this was one car that faced tough competition primarily because of its price. The diesel version of Jazz was a whopping 7 lakhs, which was a bit too much for the premium hatchback segment. Even after slashing its price down, the sales did not improve much because of the damage which was done. The Indian mind was made up against this car as it was too pricey for its segment. People, of course, had alternatives they could look forward to and hence, Jazz suffered. Also, Ford Figo and Nissan Micra gave Jazz tough competition this year. However, it still might have a chance to fare well next year.

3) Honda Brio:

Honda Brio was the alternative provided by Honda for its blunder of a car, Jazz, mainly because of its pricing. Brio was launched as a cheaper version of a hatchback by Honda but it clearly ate the shares of its team-mate, namely that of Jazz. Brio had the looks, feel and performance of Jazz at a lesser price. However, this too did not make an impact on the Indian car market because Brio is not available in a diesel variant. Since, 2011 has been a diesel car lover’s paradise; Brio clearly took a back seat. Not only does Brio compete with trusted names but also suffers because of lack of diesel engines. So, until Honda can improve upon this feature, Brio will not succeed in the Indian car market in the coming years.

4) Suzuki Kizashi:

Suzuki Kizashi was deemed to be a failure from the very beginning, say many experts. Unlike Swift, Kizashi was not properly thought of before being manufactured and launched in the Indian car market. Kizashi is a CBU, which means that it manufactured entirely in Japan and then shipped to India, thus raising the overall cost. This made Kizashi get priced at  18 lakhs in the Indian car market. Also, people started perceiving this car as a chauffeur driven one, making its positioning even more vague in the minds of people. Thus, its sales have been terrible. It also is not available in a diesel variant, which is the rage right now, again keeping it at a disadvantage. It superior looks, quality and performance have been overshadowed because of its price and lack of a diesel engine.  Hence, Kizashi needs to tackle these in order to regain its sales.

5) Ford Fiesta:

Ford Fiesta seems to have been confused not only with its design but also its price. Ford is a trusted name but it seems to have not worked its magic in Fiesta’s case. Both its interior and exterior are disappointing. The diesel variant is priced at 9 –11 lakhs, which again acts as a disadvantage. It also lags behind in fuel efficiency and speed. Also, people have better choices when it comes to the Sedan and hatchback segments, like – Honda City and Volkswagen Vento. Car lovers might shirk away from Fiesta at the first glance but it still delivers good performance, like any other Ford car. However, it needs major design changes and also price cuts to appeal to the Indian car market in order to fare well in the coming years.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Most Popular Free Startup Tools

Established companies have the necessary funds to invest in technology, but startups might have to think twice before making such a huge investment. Here are the most popular free startup tools which would ensure that you have the best in the market and are virtually free.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is one of the most popular free web analytics product used by startups. It provides a detailed analysis of the type, demography, and volume of traffic that the company website gets from various sources. This would help the startup measure the effectiveness of its online marketing strategies. Google analytics provides a detailed description on the page views over a timeline, the bounce rate, number of unique visitors, the time spend on the page, and so on. It has been used by a majority of the startups in the category of web analytics and leaves its competitors Webtrends, Omniture, and the others far behind.


Gmail, which is trying to improve its services continually and increasing the free space available to the users is used a majority of the startups, way ahead of its competitors Outlook, Go Daddy, and Rackspace. Gmail offers around seven GB of free space and the Google App provides 10 free custom e-mail addresses for small businesses, and integrates the email with its huge platter of calendar, map, docs and many others.


Dropbox provides a platform to share files and folders from different locations. It provides free storage for upto two GB and is chargeable after that. The tool ensures that you are able to synchronize your folders across systems and make the updated files available to those whom you share them with. It leads its competitors, with a majority of the startups using it in the storage, backup, and virtualization category. This tool ensures that the entrepreneurs can work from various locations and provides a safe, and provides an expanded space of upto 10 GB through referrals.


Salesforce, the enterprise cloud computing company helps in collaborating employees and customers. It leads its competitors Sugar CRM, Highrise, ZOHO, and Saleslogix and is used by a majority of the startups. It helps companies to organize, automate and synchronize their business processes. It is available online and also as a mobile app. The various services provided by Salesforce can be integrated with Microsoft Office and various social networking sites. It helps the companies to organize the information collected from the customers and is immediately available to the managers while the salesmen are still on the field.


QuickBooks provides various accounting functions and reports, where the users can send cheques, invoices, make and accept payments, calculate taxes and much more. It has a provision to import the reports to Excel so as to formulate various finance models, and has various add-ons depending on the type of business. It is used by a majority of the startups, and leads the competitors Excel, Xero, Freshbooks, and Great Plains.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

LG to unveil 55-inch OLED TV

LG Display has announced that it has developed the world's largest 55-inch OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diodes) TV panel.

Boasting of a high image quality in an ultra-thin design, LG claims that the 55" OLED TV panel produces remarkable image quality with no after image due to its high reaction velocity, as well as high contrast ratio of over 100,000:1.

The 55" OLED TV panel will be displayed at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) scheduled to be held on January 9 in Las Vegas.

"Our objective has always been to actively define and lead emerging display technology markets," said Dr Sang Beom Han, CEO and Executive Vice President of LG Display. "Although OLED technology is seen as the future of TV display, the technology has been limited to smaller display sizes and by high costs, until now. LG Display's 55-inch OLED TV panel has overcome these barriers."

OLED, a medium that controls pixels is a departure from LCD panels which utilize liquid crystals. The new technology allows light emitting diodes to self-generate light and features a reaction velocity to electric signals over 1000 times faster than liquid crystal. The OLED panel allows diodes to be turned on or off which enables lower power consumption than conventional LCD panels.

According to LG, the panel adopts an Oxide TFT technology for backplane which is different from a Low Temperature Poly Silicon ( LTPS) type generally used in existing small-sized OLED panels. The Oxide TFT type that LG Display utilizes is similar to the existing TFT process, with the simple difference lying in replacing Amorphous Silicon with Oxide.

Although industry watchers anticipate OLED as the future of TV display, the technology has faced challenges due to limitations on the sizes of displays it can be applied to and a high level of investment required.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

China Launches World's Fastest Passenger Train

Raging an exceptional speed capability of 500km (310 miles) per hour,China has successfully launched this Christmas weekend, the fastest speed, so far, as reported by State Media.

The train resembles an ancient Chinese sword and was built by a subsidiary of China South Locomotive & Rolling Stock Corporation Limited (CSR), which is China's largest rail vehicle maker. “The super-speed train design resembled the design of China’s ancient sword. The bodywork uses plastic materials reinforced with carbon fiber,” Ding Sansan, the company’s Chief Technician, said to the agency. This has contributed to reducing the train’s weight at a considerable rate while increasing its speed level.

China kept postponing its plan of launching high speed train fearing the havoc followed by the deadly collision between two super fast trains killing nearly forty people and injuring 210 passengers in July, 2008. However, after the July incident, most of the Chinese trains made by CSR continued to provide service with reduced speeds.

Significantly known as six-car train for its ultra - high speed, the train has a  tractive driving power of 22,800 kilowatts, compared with 9,600 kilowatts for the CRH380 trains, Chinese electric high-speed train developed by CSR running is currently running for Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway with the world’s fastest speed of 300 km per hour. Ongoing plans are in progress to extend the railway route till Hongkong by 2015.

Shen Zhiyun,a locomotive train expert asserted that the current speed of 500 kmph will serve a useful reference for existing high- speed railway operations. However, the CSR chairman Zhao Xiaogang clarified that in future Chinese trains will not run at this speed levels. He added "We aim to ensure the safety of trains operation." However, it is not clear when the train would be made accessible for commercial service.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Motorola Unveils Droid Xyboard Tablets

Motorola this week unveiled its two newest entries in the tablet game, the Droid Xyboard 10.1 and Droid Xyboard 8.2. Both units will come packed with 1.2-GHz dual-core processors, 1GB of RAM, and will run on Verizon’s 4G LTE network. Initially the devices will come loaded with Google’s Android Honeycomb, but according to Motorola, they will both be receiving over-the-air updates for Ice Cream Sandwich.

A 16GB version of the 10.1-inch Xyboard will cost you 28,277 with an included two-year Verizon Wireless data contract, while the 32GB and 64GB versions will charge you 33,625 and 38,971, respectively. A 16GB 8.1-inch Xyboard will be available for 22,935, while a 32GB version will cost 28,277. There is no 64GB version.

Motorola says they will be hitting the street later this month. Keep it locked in for our full reviews of both of these tablets when we get them. The tablets will come wrapped in magnesium-reinforced bodies with aluminum housings that are sure to help in the durability department.

Their displays will also be covered in Corning Gorilla Glass to help protect them when you inevitably drop them on the floor. Motorola says both tablets are thinner than an AAA battery and thinner lighter than a paperback book. For the business set, the Xyboards will be loaded with Quickoffice HD and Citrix GoToMeeting. The 10.1inch will also offer stylus support, as well as an included precision-tip stylus. And when you are done with work, you can open the included Dijit app and use your Xyboard as a universal remote.

How to fix iPad update error

Question: I recently upgraded my iPad (1st generation) to iOS 5. After the update the performance of the tablet has gone down with the navigation being a bit sluggish and apps often crashing. How can I fix this? 

- Hemant Sahni

There have been reports of the older generation iPod Touch and iPad slowing down after the iOS 5 upgrade. There are two ways to fix this issue. First, update to the latest iOS 5.0.1 via iTunes or over the air update on your device.

If this does not work, then do a backup and restore of the iPad by the following steps -Connect your iPad to the PC/Mac and launch iTunes. In iTunes, select the iPad in the left column and take a fresh backup of all your content.

Once the backup is finished, click on the restore button and wipe the iPad clean. Next, restore all your content using the backup file created. This should significantly improve the performance of your iPad.

Question: I bought an Apple iMac 3 months ago, but from the past few days it takes a lot of time to start up. Even after starting it runs slow and keeps freezing every now and then for a few seconds. Please help. 

- Pranav Ranawat

There can be multiple reasons for your iMac acting like this. For starters, go to Applications > Utilities and launch Activity monitor. It will show you all the apps running on your MAC with details on how much CPU and RAM is being consumed by each. Quit any app that you are not using and is heavy on resources.

Also, do keep in mind that OS X does not quit an application if you just click the cross button on top. You need to quit the program via the menu or by using the 'Command + Q' keyboard command. Too many files and folders on your desktop can also be a reason for your machine getting slow and. We suggest to move the data on desktop into a single folder.

Also check if there are too many program starting at login, widgets on dashboard and animated wallpapers also lead to slowdown. If this does not help, then download Onyx for Mac from It is a system maintenance application to optimize OS X.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Now, Power Your Home With 'Solar Paint'

New research led by an Indian origin professor in the U.S heralds the day when one can apply a coat of paint on the outside walls of a house to generate electricity from sunlight that can be used to power the appliances and equipment on the inside.

The team of researchers at the University of Notre Dame in the U.S has developed an inexpensive "solar paint" that uses semiconducting nanoparticles to produce energy.

The research led by chemistry professor Prashant Kamat in Notre Dame's Center for Nano Science and Technology is described in ACS Nano, a journal published by the American Chemical Society. The scientists have appropriately christened their product as "Sun-Believable Solar Paint".

"By making use of recent advances in semiconductor nanocrystal research, we have now developed a one-coat solar paint for designing quantum dot solar cells," Kamat and co-workers said.

The researchers said they wanted to do something transformative, to move beyond current silicon-based solar technology.

"By incorporating power-producing nanoparticles, called quantum dots, into a spreadable compound, we've made a one-coat solar paint that can be applied to any conductive surface without special equipment."

According to the researchers, their paint is based on nano-sized particles of titanium dioxide coated with either cadmium sulfide or cadmium selenide. Describing the work they said the particles were suspended in a water-alcohol mixture to create the binder-free paste which was then applied to conducting glass surface and annealed at 200 degrees C.

"When the paste was brushed onto a transparent conducting material and exposed to light, it created electricity."

This paste of nanoparticles when applied on surfaces using simple conventional paint brush "could turn large surfaces into solar cells", says a statement by the Notre Dame University.

The best light-to-energy conversion efficiency reached so far is 1 percent, which is much less than the usual 10 to 15 percent efficiency of commercial silicon solar cells. "But this paint can be made cheaply and in large quantities," the researchers claim.

"If we can improve the efficiency somewhat, we may be able to make a real difference in meeting energy needs in the future."

"Whereas further improvements are necessary to develop strategies for large area, this initial effort to prepare solar paint offers the advantages of simple design and economically viable next generation solar cells," the researchers said.

Kamat and his team also plan to study ways to improve the stability of the new material.

Guide to the perfect chicken roast

There are more ways than one to plate up grandma's roasted succulent chicken recipe. With Christmas around the corner, choose the one that's easiest for you. A few options...

Unlike how magnificent a well-roasted and garnished chicken looks on a dinner table, in reality, cooking the dish is not as tedious and fussy. With the right ingredients, roasting-gear and a few seasoning tricks, you too can easily whip up a brilliant roast chicken for your family get-togethers! We guide you on how to make your chicken taste delicious.

How to roast your chicken
Pick the right chicken: While choosing chicken, Executive Chef Suresh Thampy suggests, "For roast chicken, always buy a chicken with its skin on. So that while roasting it, the skin helps in retaining moisture and gives it a golden brown texture." After you have removed the chicken from its packaging, remove the giblets (i.e. the organs like heart, liver, etc.,) from the body cavity.

Clean it thoroughly: To clean the chicken, hold it under cold running tap water and rinse it. Pat it dry with a kitchen towel. Cleaning the chicken will ensure that you kill most of the bacteria.

Seasoning: "Marinate your chicken before putting it to roast. Rub it with herbs like thyme, rosemary, oregano, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cut aromatic vegetables like carrots, turnips, celery, onions and potatoes and place it under the chicken in your roast pan, so that they will cook in the juice of the meat," says Thampy. Executive Chef Rejeev Basak suggests another way, "Grease the chicken with olive oil and season with salt and pepper, rubbing it all over the bird as well as inside the cavity for additional flavour. Prick a lemon with a fork and place it inside the cavity along with a bunch of herbs. You can also fill the cavity with orange or lemon wedges."

If you find that the chicken is browning too quickly during roasting, cover it with aluminum foil until it is done. It will also keep the meat from drying out. Another option is drizzling it with white wine. Once you have roasted the chicken for the correct amount of time, remove it from the oven.

Resting the roast: As soon as your chicken is out of the oven, don't get tempted to cut it. Let it rest for at least 15 minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute into the meat, making it moist and tender. The juices from the roasting tray can also be used to make a delicious gravy.

The different ways of roasting at home
Like there are countless ways to season a roast chicken, there is more than one way to roast it too. While the end result of all these methods is spectacular, you need to choose one that is better suited to your style.

Quick-roasting method
Traditionally, roasting chickens came from older, tougher birds, and the only way to get them to be tender and juicy was to cook them at a low temperature for a long time. That's not so much the case nowadays, so if you don't have a lot of time, a quick way to cook the chicken is to quick roast it. The main reason this technique is used is to brown the outside of the chicken, similar to browning food in a pan before pot roasting or stewing it. Also, quick roasting gives more variety of flavour, because the outside is brown while the center is much less done.

Preheat your oven to 450 F. Place the chicken in the oven. Roast it for about 45 minutes, or until your meat thermometer tells you the chicken is cooked. The best thing to do for this method is to add a little butter inside and out to baste it.

Slow-roasting method
This method for roasting chicken takes a long time. But according to Rejeev, "The slow roasting of chicken is a much preferred way, as the chicken is cooked completely and stays more juicier that quick roasting. It's especially good if you're using a chicken that's a bit older and tougher. The result is great when roasting with whole chickens."

Preheat your oven to 275 F. Roast the chicken for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, or until your meat thermometer tells you the chicken is cooked. Roasting chicken at such a low temperature means that the white and dark meat will cook much more evenly, so you won't end up with dry breast meat. The low cooking temperature will keep the skin from getting brown and crisp. Also, because the cooking temperature is so low, there won't be as much evaporation as the other method. More of the collagen that makes meat tough is dissolved in slow cooking. This technique also gives you an incredibly juicy and tender chicken, though the taste is a bit less intense.

Roasting at 350 F
Roasting a chicken at 350 F takes a bit more time than the quick-roasting method. The chicken generally ends up a lot more tender though because the tough fibers like collagen have more time to melt.

Preheat your oven to 350 F. Place the chicken in the oven. Roast it for about 20 minutes per pound, plus an additional 20 minutes till it is cooked. This technique cooks chicken at a fairly high heat for a longer period of time. The goal is to get it nice and tender, but you also have to be sure it doesn't dry out or burn. Baste the chicken with water, or wine every half hour or so. You can also place butter under the skin or inside the cavity. Remember to roast the chicken breast side down for the first two thirds of the cooking time.

Stuffed Roast Chicken

Indian Style
Ingredients:1 whole chicken, roughly 1.5 kg

For the marinade:
- 2 tbsps yogurt
- 2 tbsps lemon juice
- 3 tsp ginger& garlic paste
- 1/2 tsp red chilli powder
- 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
- 1/2 tsp salt.

For the filling:
- 3 tbsps oil
- 3/4 tsp cumin seeds
- 2 finely chopped onions
- 3 tsps ginger& garlic paste
- 1 tbsps coriander powder
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- 1 tbsp garam masala
- 300 gms minced lamb meat
- Salt to taste
- 2 finely chopped tomatoes
- 1 cup chopped potatoes
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- 1/4 cup chopped coriander

- Put all the ingredients for the marinade in a bowl and mix well.
- Put the whole chicken into this marinade and coat it well. Cover the dish with cling wrap and keep aside for 2-3 hours in the refrigerator.
- While the chicken marinates, you can prepare the filling.
- Heat 3 tbsps of cooking oil in a wok or deep pan, on medium heat.
- Add the cumin seeds and fry for a minute. Add the onions now. Fry till they turn a golden color.
- Add the ginger& garlic paste and fry for a minute.
- Add the minced meat and all the powdered spices - coriander, cumin, garam masala and salt.
- Continue to brown the minced meat, stirring often to prevent burning. This should take about 5-7 minutes.
- Add the tomatoes, peas and potatoes, stir and cook.
- Once you turn the fire off, add the lemon juice and chopped coriander leaves. Mix well.
- Preheat your oven to 350F.
- Remove the marinated chicken from the refrigerator and fill the stomach cavity with the minced meat stuffing.
- Try and get all the stuffing in if possible. Place it on a roasting dish and drizzle all over with oil.
- Roast the chicken, uncovered for 75 minutes. You can serve it with parathas

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Forgotten Vacation Spots

Destinations that were hot and happening only a decade ago have since gone lackadaisical, hanging on to the reminiscence of their grandeur days. But what rooted the flux in the fad? Read on to find out why the hotspots on a traveler's former bucket list fell out and whether or not they should have been forgotten! Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Most people are familiar with Fort Lauderdale's scandalous Spring Break reputation, especially ayone who's ever seen the 1960 film Where the Boys Are!This coastal revelry haven ruled the coastal party scene from the 1940s to the 1980s with its sunny weather, gold-sand beaches, cheap hotels and a vibrant nightlife scene. Fort Lauderdale's infamy as Spring Break Central started to decline a few decades prior, when the seaside wickedness came to a shrieking arrest back in the mid 1980s. All because an attempt to clean up the city's reputation was made! Revellers turned to other, more tolerant towns like Cancun, Mexico and South Padre Island, Tex. Spring Break made Fort Lauderdale famous, but its recent revamps have made it luxurious. Now that its wild ways have been tamed, Fort Lauderdale makes for an ideal (and family-friendly) beach getaway. Lake Placid, New York
This snug village snuggled among the peaks of the Adirondack Mountains has been the winter sports mecca of upstate New York for years, but once upon a time, this tiny town captured the attention of sports fans across the world! The 1980 games truly solidified Lake Placid's place in Olympic history: It was here at Lake Placid that the U.S. men's ice hockey team crushed the profoundly preferential Soviets 4-3. The win, which has since been christened the "Miracle on Ice," enthused a invigorated sense of partisanship amid Cold War tensions. And as the drone of the 1980 Winter Olympics wore off it took Lake Placid's popularity as a wintertime getaway along! Skiers soon turned their attention westward towards Aspen, Coloumbia, and Lake Tahoe, California. Lake Placid persists to hold fast to its Olympic history, offering visitors the option to ski, skate and sled on the former Olympic facilities. With local shops, family-owned restaurants and romantic ski lodges encased in Lincoln-log architecture, this idyllic town looks just the way it did back in the 80s. Lake Placid radiates an antediluvian lure found only in the Adirondacks. Acapulco, Mexico
Hot and very popular in the 1950s, Acapulco was the place to go. Mexico's west coast fascinated the hippest of the hip with its blond beaches and swanky repute. It was here that Frank Sinatra enjoyed oceanfront martinis, Elizabeth Taylor got married and Elvis filmed Fun in Acapulco. The year-round warm weather constantly engrossed sun-seekers, but it was Acapulco's flourishing nightlife that fixed the interest of travelers around the world. Only here could you dine at midnight before dancing till dawn. This was where you came to see and be seen. Acapulco lost its luster ss the 20th century set in. More modern resorts were popping up along Mexico's east coast in places like Cancun and Cozumel, drawing interest away from the Pacific and toward the calmer turquoise waters of the Gulf. Frommer's contrasts Acapulco to "a diva -- a little past her prime, perhaps overly made up, but still capable of captivating an audience." As for the glitz, Acapulco still tries to live up to its momentous repute, but evils with trash, drugs and prostitution distorted this once-beloved hangout from enchanting to grungy. Pismo Beach, California
Many a Bugs Bunny escapade began with an anticipated trip to Pismo Beach, but a missed left turn at Albuquerque always hexed debacle. But what caught Bugs' eye in the first place? While the warm weather and hushed shorelines were undeniably perquisites, this Looney Tune was after some seafood. This small seaside town -- located about 200 miles north of Los Angeles -- earned America's love during the 1950s, '60s and '70s with its chowders, clam sauces and everything in between. But before Bugs lost his way, Pismo Beach acted as a safe haven for partiers during the 1920s. The town's saloons and brothels were other major tourist draw. Pismo welcomed so many tourists that its two hotels -- the Pismo Beach Hotel and the El Pismo Inn -- had to erect tents to accommodate them. While it may not be as hopping as it was in the 1920s or as trustworthy as it was in the '50s, Pismo Beach still has plenty to offer. This comfy Californian town features a excellent shoreline, lush golf courses and abundant opportunities to surf, boat and fish. Add on the promise of at least one gorgeous clam bake, and you'll see why Bugs Bunny was so unwavering to visit.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Happy being single forever

They are smart and funny. Wherever they go, they tend to strike a chord in women's hearts. Yet, they stay away from commitment and are happy being single and forever ready to mingle. That is just how they like it. Media professional Rahul Sharma says it's great to be single. "It's cool as you don't have to worry about being in a binding relationship. You have the freedom to do what you want. And since you're not tied down to anyone, you have the opportunity to meet many women. You can use this opportunity to have a nice fling," he winks. Many men believe that being a bachelor allows them to be more expressive and live life to the fullest. IT professional Aneet Jhaveri is one such guy. "I like being single as you don't have the burden of putting someone else's needs and desires before your own. I love to travel, and experience cities through their nightlife and restaurants. I make it a point to visit cities within the country and abroad at least once a year. I don't think I would have been able to do that if I was married with a wife and kids." For some, it is not so much a choice but simply a part of life. Marketing manager Rohit Kapoor is a typical single and available guy who loves hanging out with his friends at his favourite bar and has had many relationships. "I always knew that I wasn't the kind of person who would get into a serious relationship. I like it this way. And I have made some cool friends along the way." When Bryan Adams sang 18 Till I Die he would have hardly imagined that many guys would make it the motto of their lives. At least this is what seems when you speak to interior designer Akash Roy. He enjoys being single, and says that it's all about feeling young. "No one can say that being married with a family is an easy task. Being single gives me the opportunity to live every single dream of mine and not worry about responsibilities. I can take risks, and I don't have to worry about ruining someone else's life." While many people may shy away from the concept of bachelorhood always, these men are embracing the joys of single hood happily.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

LG launches Optimus Hub for Rs 13,000

LG Electronics has refreshed its smartphone line up in India with the launch of LG Optimus Hub (LG-E510). Sporting a 3.5-inch capacitive touchscreen, the phone packs 5 megapixel camera with autofocus and LED flash. Powered by an 800MHz processor, the LG Optimus Hub runs on Google Android v2.3.4 Gingerbread and comes with Optimus UI 2.0. The phone also offers support for DivX, Xvid media, 3G, Wi-Fi and GPS. The phone's battery boasts of up to 7 hours of talk-time on a single charge. LG Optimus Hub is priced at Rs 12,990.

Secret Escapes in India

India is a land of attractive places. Apart from the famous beaches and well known tourist locations, there are still some unexplored places in India which are equally amazing and exotic and not yet fully exploited. Below are the lists of such places.


Cherrapunji of Meghalaya is one of the most amazing and exotic places in India which is not yet fully explored to its potential for tourism. In India Cherrapunji is the only place that receives maximum rainfall throughout the year. It is known for its wet land and weather. The Mawsmai falls is the most famous attractions in Cherrapunji, which is the fourth utmost waterfall in India with an altitude of 1035 feet. Khasi Monoliths with its secret tunnels and passages is a must-visit adventurous place . Another beauty is the Orchid gardens, which has many lush green hills and waterfalls which are still untouched. Cherrapunji is 56 km away from Shillong and is easily accessible by road.

Daman & Diu

The beautiful Union Territory is one of the secret escapes in India. Damao or Daman is located on the west coast of India bordered by Arabian Sea. Daman is divided by the Daman-Ganga River. The southern part is known as Big Daman or Moti Daman and the northern part is called Nani Daman or Litttle Daman. Moti Daman has old ‘Se Cathedral’ Church and a lighthouse and Nani Daman has the ‘Our Lady of Rosary’ Church. The other attractions are Jain Temple, Somnath Mahadev Temple, Devka Beach and Jampore Beach. The small island Diu is one of the amazing places in India. It is the perfect match of sky, sand and sea. The attractive places of Diu are Bunder Chowk, Fort, Panikota, St. Paul’s and St. Assisi Church. Nagoa Beach, Jalandhar Beach and Ghoghla Beach are the striking beaches of Diu. The wildlife safari is another interest of this place. Daman & Diu is easily accessible by air, road and rail.

Tarkarli Beach

Tarkarli in Sindhudurg is an awesome beach in costal Maharashtra. The wide and narrow stretches of beach with calm and clear waters are the most appealing. The two famous sea forts are Sindhudurg and Padmagarh. Other striking places are like Rock garden, Malvan Market and Sangam. The water adventures in Tarkarli are Snorkeling, Scuba diving and Boating. The best place to stay in Tarkarli beach is the MTDC resort which includes 20 cottages facing the beach. Well connected roads are there from Mumbai to reach Tarkarli.

Auroville Beach

Auroville, also known as the city of Dawn, was the vision of Sri Aurobindo and is an experimental township of Pondicherry founded in 1968. It is 12 km away from Pondicherry. This beach is one of the major attractions of Pondicherry. Sand, green palm trees, shell fragments and the shingles are the beauty of the beach. This beach is less visited and mostly untouched by tourists. The calm beach is ideal for a relaxing and rejuvenating holiday experience. The other beauty is the gold plated temple Matrimandir situated at the heart of Auroville, which with its tranquil surroundings, is said to be one of the most spiritual and peaceful places in India. This place of utmost calmness and can be easily reached from Pondicherry by road.


Wayanad or the land of paddy is located in the north-east of “God’s own Country”, Kerala. Wayand is the green paradise of India. Pookat Lake is a must-visit location in Wayanad. The natural lake is surrounded by rich greeneries and hills. Pakshipathalam is one of the most adventurous places in South India which can be reached only by trekking where very rare species of birds are found. Edakkal Caves are the natural caves where the Stone Age pictorial writings are written all over on the walls. Species, tea, coffee and cocoa are the major cultivation in Wayanad.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Facebook Loosing U.S. Users

Facebook the world’s largest social network site with more than 800 million active users around the world and roughly 200 million in the United States or two-thirds of the population, as of December 2011. According to Inside Facebook, a leading source of news and analysis on Facebook’s global growth says, Facebook in the U.S. has lost nearly 6 million users, falling from 155.2 million at the start of May 2011 to 149.4 million at the end of it.

This is the first time that Facebook has lost the U.S. users. Even Canada also fell significantly, by 1.52 million down, although it has been fluctuating around that number. Meanwhile, the United Kingdom, Norway and Russia all posted losses of more than 100,000 users.

Facebook has prepared most-expected public offering and it is eager to show off its thrust by building on its huge membership. But the company is still losing its users in U.S. Some people just refuse to participate and including people who have given it a try.

A study from eMarketer has released expressing user’s dissatisfaction over recent changes in Facebook. Many of the users mention concerns about privacy settings, confusing changes to the newsfeed. The study also reveals that 42 percent of users will use Facebook less than what they used to do and with 17 percent claiming they are stopped Facebook outright.

Inside Facebook also said, it could be even mean people have secret account that they made to spy on someone and maybe it is government shutting down spy operations or something bot accounts getting deleted or fake accounts of famous celebrities account are being suspended. Despite the possible losses, Facebook is still growing with more than 800 million users, having reached 687 million monthly actives.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Costliest Hotel Rooms in India

Hotel room matters a lot for travelers, as it can make or break the essence of a trip. A good comfortable hotel room is like an icing on cake for travelers as it adds more joy to their expedition. However if you want your trip to be more relaxing and fun filled, by experiencing the best comforts and luxuries of life, you will have to shell out a handsome amount of money. The listed below hotels are some which offer costliest rooms in India.'

1. Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur: Referred to as the most romantic hotels in India, Taj Lake Palace, Udaipur tops the chart of hotels that offer the costliest rooms in India. This beautiful palace situated in the middle of the serene lake Pichola, offers a wide variety of rooms to suit the taste of every tourist. Their most basic option will cost you around 36,000 per night, while the grand presidential suite will damage you 6 lakh per night. The Taj Lake Palace Hotel belongs to the Mewar dynasty, the hotel treasures historical rooms with miniature paintings and intricate glasswork. You can make your stay in Udaipur memorable by booking a room facing the beautiful lake pichola. The hotel also offers leisurely boat ride on the placid waters of Pichola.

2. The Leela Palace Kempinksi, New Delhi: One of the finest hotels in the country, Leela Palace Kempinksi, comes next in the list. The elite Leela Palace is situated in the posh Chanakyapuri in New Delhi. The 260 rooms in this hotel are said to be the largest in the capital as it spreads more than 550 sq ft. The Presidential Suite itself extends 4425 sq. ft. The grand deluxe will compel you to spend 25,000 per night, while the Maharaja Suite will cost about 4.5 lakh for a night. The hotel has bullet proof glass windows. It also offers a 6,500 sqft ESPA spa, a heated infinity pool on the rooftop, a whisky and wine bar and a tea lounge. 18 billion was spent to build this luxuary hotel.

3. The Oberoi, Gurgaon: The hotel treasures a contemporary Indian art gallery and an exclusive cigar lounge which makes it exceptional in the country. A single deluxe room will charge you about 30,000, whereas the presidential room will squeeze you 3 lakh per night. Ideal for business conferences, the hotel boasts 202 guest rooms and suites, planned with a set of contemporary features. The comfortable rooms are detailed with landscape windows facing the pools and landscaped gardens. 24 hour butler service is available in the hotel while the selected suites are provided with private heated swimming pools.

4. The Oberoi, Mumbai: The Oberoi is one of the top hotels in Mumbai. Nested on the Marine Drive, the grand hotel overlooks the city’s famous Arabian bay. If you opt to stay in the deluxe room you will have to spend about 25,000 and a presidential suite will cost you 3 lakh per night. The well planned hotel is redesigned to fit in new security features. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton has also availed the luxury services here. The hotel is ideal for business meetings and conferences.

5. Taj Lands End, Mumbai:This luxury hotel is the right choice for travelers seeking five star luxury and comfort of life. Situated in the elite Bandstand area of Bandra, the hotel offers luxury rooms facing the scenic view of Arabian Sea. Apart from the other amenities, the 18 storey hotel has rooms that feature a mini-bar. The deluxe rooms here can be availed for 23,000, while the presidential suites cost about 2.5 lakh per night. The hotel offers spacious and sophisticated guest rooms and is quite near to the city’s airports.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

iPhone 4S: Not Made for India?

Since the release of iPhone 4S last month, Siri has received some criticism for not coping well with the Indian accents. Already the phone is not wwell accepted by Indians for the high price and the Siri not working makes it more frustrating to Indian users.

The most innovative features of iPhone 4S is the intelligent voice assistant Siri, but some people who have used it, say Siri does not work with Indian accents. Meanwhile the iPhone 4S page on the Apple India website is exactly same as the U.S. version but the difference is Apple does not mention Siri feature anywhere on the India site where as the U.S. website is filled with screenshots and videos of Siri.

Siri can recognize some simple voice commands like setting alarm, scheduling meetings, adding a reminder, sending text message or e-mail, looking up stock market, weather reports and currency conversion. But Siri's big problem is when it tries identifying Indian names from the address book, searching nearby restaurants and coffee shops in the Indian streets and browsing over the net. Interestingly Siri does all these functions in U.S.

"My Siri does not understand anything I say. I have an Indian accent but most other voice recognition software work well with me. Is it Siri or is it me? It's a big disappointment as I bought an IPhone 4S to use Siri extensively!!" says an Indian customer of iPhone 4S in Apple's discussion forum.

Apple introduced Siri in India like in many other countries as beta version. That is why it still lacks location-based service. Moreover, Siri is just in a beta stage and this can be one of the reasons why Apple is not promoting Siri in India.

The beta version has built-in support of American, British and Australian accented English, but it has problems recognizing commands in strong accented English, including certain regional in Scotland, and some parts of India. However, as many Indian users have pointed out accents vary quite dramatically throughout.

Apple says, Siri will support additional languages in 2012 including Japanese, Chinese, Korean,Italian, and Spanish.

Not only Siri the iPhone 4S was itself a trouble maker in India . It had network compatibility issues. Some users have experienced a peculiar situation where the device stops recognizing their SIM cards. Users also reported that they receive error messages on the iPhone 4S stating that they either have no SIM card installed or their SIM is invalid. This carrier issues are reported only when the device is purchased outside India. A lot of users have been constantly talking about this issue on the Apple support forums and surprisingly there has not been any statement by Apple in this regard.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Indulge in guilt-free pleasures

Have a hankering for a vada pav or kheer nothing else can fix? We know the feeling. Here are healthier variations to a few of your soft spots.

Indian food is infamous for being too rich, too spicy, too fried, too motherly. Well, it all depends on how you adapt. Packed with an aromatic combination of crunchy vegetables, whole grains, fresh herbs and spices, Indian food can also be the perfect blend of nutrition and taste, sans the generous smatterings of ghee.

Keep cholesterol and acidity at bay with these few alterations suggested by Chef Nityanand Shetty from Calorie Care, a calorie-counted meal service. He takes on the champions; a few beloved Indian favouries.

Butter less chicken
Original calorie: 400 / kcal 100 / gms
Original calorie: 123 / kcal 100 / gms

Substitute the heavy cream and butter with a dash of yogurt or low fat curd. Add boiled vegetables if you want to increase the fiber intake.

- 300 gms chicken breast
- 5 gms turmeric powder, green chillies
- 50 gms tandoori masala
- 1 spring of coriander (chopped)
- 100 gms onion
- 250 gms tomato
- 50 gm cashew nuts (boiled and ground)
- 2 tbsp ginger-garlic paste
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 50 gms kasuri methi
- 200 gms low fat curd
- Salt
- 100 gms yogurt
- powder of 4 cardamom, 2 cloves, 4 whole peppercorn, 1 tej patta, pinch jeera

- Marinate the chicken pieces in a mixture of low fat curd, salt, red chilli powder and ginger garlic paste.
- In a pan, heat oil and saute the onions until brown.
- Add in the green chillies, cumin and tandoori masala.
- Add the chicken along with the marinade and let the gravy cook for a few minutes.
- Add the kasuri methi and salt and mix well.
- Pour in the cashew mixture and stir well.
- Garnish with coriander and a swirl of yogurt.

Chole bhature
Original calorie: 202 / kcal 100 / gms
Original calorie: 142 / kcal 100 / gms

A combination of black chana and chick peas increases fiber content and lowers glycemic index. Add spinach for an iron boost.

- 250 gms kala channa (soaked overnight)
- 250 gms chickpeas (soaked overnight)
- 2 bunches of spinach (blanched)
- 3 black cardamom
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 cardamom
- 50 gm kokam
- 5 gms ajwain
- 50 gms coriander seeds
- 25 gms cumin seeds
- 50 gms chana masala
- 25 gms red chili powder
- 15 gms kashmiri chili
- 1 ½ tsp amchoor

- Roast the dry spices and grind finely. Pressure cook the lentils with salt, black cardamom and cinnamon for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Strain the beans and retain the water. In a pan tip in both the beans, the retained water and add the ground masala to it.
- Stir in dried kokam and chopped spinach and simmer. Add water if it seems too dry.
- Cook for 15-20 minutes. Garnish with chopped onions.
- Serve with tandoori rotis or whole wheat puris.

High fiber vada pav
Original calorie: 445 / kcal 1 / gms
Original calorie: 235 / kcal 1 / gms

Replaces starchy potatoes with raw bananas. Chana dal boosts the protein content.

- 4 raw bananas (boiled)
- 100 gms chana dal (boiled)
- 5 gms cumin seeds
- 10 gms mustard seeds
- few curry leaves
- 50 gms onions (finely chopped)
- 10 gms ginger-garlic paste
- 5 gms turmeric powder
- 2 green chillies (finely chopped)
- 15 ml lemon juice
- 10 ml oil
- fresh coriander for garnish
- salt to taste
- 2 multi grain or whole wheat buns

- Peel the bananas and grind them in a food processor along with the dal.
- Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, green chillies, curry leaves and ginger-garlic paste followed by the onions to hot oil.
- Saute briefly and season with salt and turmeric powder.
- Once cooled, add the banana mix along with coriander leaves, lemon juice and mix it well.
- Make small patties and grill.
- Serve with whole wheat or multi grain buns along with green mint and garlic chutney.

Airsoft Safety Gear and Equipment

Airsoft masks are designed to absorb any direct shot, from any distance or range. An ordinary pair of goggles will supply only a false sense of security and put one at great risk since it they are not constructed to block a airsoft bullet. All airsoft mask manufactures measure up to DOT safety criteria and safety standards.The face mask or airsoft mask is the greatest warm gear in playing the sport of airsoft. It mainly shields the eyes from balls with a traveling speed of up to three hundred “feet per second”. Most completely cover the face and the ears, but there are those who prefer to wear goggles, protecting only the eyes. Before firing your gun, be aware of what you may hit if you miss your intended target. Awareness of your surroundings is highly important and every moment should be taken with complete seriousness to avoid chaos. By following these safety guide lines, you can enjoy airsoft without harming yourself or others. When everyone is aware of the rules and understands the terms of how to be safe your experience will be fun and safe. Be smart, be safe and have fun. This section will be updated weekly with tactical tips for airsoft, thus this section is called tactical airsoft, tactical airsoft section will contain information that most players should know when playing airsoft tactically at least, most of these tips will be just like the military, after all this is a military simulation game though rules between both are totally different. As a club we also create other social activites among the members and also do some voluntarily work in some areas that we use in order to show our gratitude for the permission given to us to use that area, we also do activities like the annual dinner which is usually a "Suckling Pig", BBQ in summer, etc.If you are interested in participating in one of our activities do not hesitate to contact us, we will be more than pleased to guide you and give you a hands on of what we do, obviously you must meet certain requierments in order for us to be in line with the local rules and regualtions. If you have any queires be sure to check our F.A.Q section were most probabily all of your questions will be answered, in case there is not the answer you are looking for do not worry, contact us and we will get back to you ASAP.

Sony to launch 3G tablets next month

Electronic consumer device maker Sony launched its first tablet PC in India and unveiled 3G tablets which will be launched in the mid of next month.

"Today we are launching tablets that support Wi-Fi connectivity. In mid-January we will launch tablets that will have both 3G connectivity and Wi-Fi. We expect 3G-enabled tablets to contribute 80 per cent to our total tablet sales in this financial year," Sony Managing Director Masaru Tamagawa told reporters here.

Sony launched Wi-Fi-enabled tablets, S and P models, based on Google's Android platform at a price starting from Rs 29,990.

"We are in discussion with some operators to bundle these tablets with their services," Tamagawa said.

Sony Tablet P which will be available in 3G version will be first tablet to have dual screen and which can be folded. The dual screen can be used as single and also for two separate functions. This tablet will be launched at price of Rs 36,990.

The company has plans to invest Rs 10 crore in promotion of these tablets in last quarter of this financial year.

"These tablets are compatible with DLNA which will allow user to connect their tablet with other DLNA supporting devices," Sony Corporation's Deputy President for VAIO and Mobile Business Group Hideyuki Furumi said.

DLNA will provide features like watching movie available in the tablet on a DLNA compatible TV or listening to music on speakers supporting DLNA technology within premise of a user.

Both the tablets will be available across 500 stores in India from mid-January.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tom Cruise escapes serious injury

Actor Tom Cruise escaped serious injury as he kept slamming into the world's tallest building Burj Khalifa tower in Dubai while performing the stunts.

The actor reprises his role as agent Ethan Hunt in "Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol". The stunt was far trickier than Cruise made it look like and he was left battered after the first few takes.

"I remember I came slamming into the building, when I didn't quite make it around because I had to figure out actually how to fly," quoted Cruise as saying.

"I had to figure out how to use my feet as a rudder because you have cross winds up there. It took a while to figure out how to not come into the building head first. So the first couple of times I was slamming into the building... and I'm like, 'It's OK, it's OK, I'm all right.' So it was really fun," he added.

Cruise also revealed he turned down the chance to wear a parachute during the sequence, adding, "I remember the first safety briefings we were getting and Gregg Smrz - he's the stunt co-ordinator - said, 'Look Tom, I've just had a five-hour meeting and they want everyone to wear parachutes.' I said, 'Parachutes on the thing? That's more dangerous.' So I said, 'We need a new safety officer who's going to says it's OK.'"

Monday, December 12, 2011

What Can Startups Unlearn From MNCs?

It is said that “There are no mistakes, no coincidences. All events are blessings given to us to learn from”. So true. Big corporate houses and MNCs make huge mistakes that sometimes led to the downfall of the product or sometimes even the organization. Being a startup entrepreneur, one gets a chance to unlearn from these acts and set a chance for the survival.

Over Branding

Edsel from Ford Motor Company has become a synonym with failure. It was introduced with considerable publicity and also promoted by a top-rated television special, The Edsel Show, but failed due to over branding. Edsel failed to standout to the public expectations. Being a startup, it is not important to focus more on making your brand appealing, rather it is to make the product or services according to the need of the market. With cutthroat competition, the products or services available in the market has become par with each other, so it is important to create a distinctive factor rather than over branding your product.

Pre Announcement Of Launch

A company pre-announces a new product that ends up being delayed and sales of the current product suffer as buyers hold off purchasing while waiting for the new release. One good example is Apple. The first iPhone was shown off six months ahead of general availability. In such cases, the companies need to suffer from Osborne effect that occurs when the pre-announcement is made either unaware of the risks involved or when the timing is misjudged.

Over Confidence

“A day that will live in marketing infamy”, is what Coca-Cola quotes for its attempt to change its classic recipe. This backfired the company and the confidence on the product and their strategy turned out to be over confidence and the consumer torment likes of which no business has ever seen. According to Roberto Goizueta, the then Chairman and CEO of the company, they set out to change the dynamics of sugar colas in the U.S., and did exactly that – albeit not in the way they had planned.

For a startup, that has very few opportunities in terms of penny to experiment with, they should be confident enough on the actions that they take on and should follow the scheduled plans. Change is the fact of life, and no stubborn will live for long. Accept changes to the plans when and where needed and let the others involved know about it.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Maxx Mobiles launches touchscreen projector phone

Indian handset maker Maxx Mobiles introduced a full touchscreen projector phone Maxx Focus. The 2.8 inch touch screen phone has a 5 megapixel camera and a built-in projector.

Ajjay Agarwal, Chairman & Managing Director, MAXX Group said, "With the MAXX Focus MTP9, we are introducing new features that include the in-built projector and a touchscreen. We believe in the concept of 'entertainment mobility' and have therefore ensured our users experience the best in both visual and audio with our wide range of applications and features."

MAXX Focus MTP9 will be made available across India through MAXX Mobiles' widespread distribution network. MAXX has its presence in about 40,000 retailers across India through its strong dealer distribution network supported by more than 500 after sales service centers.

The modern retail outlets through which MAXX sells its brand of mobile phones and accessories include Planet M, Tata Croma, Hyper City, Star Bazar, Mobile & Gadgets, Indian Naval Canteen, Kings Electronics, Hotspot, Reliance Web World and NEXT electronics.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Shopping Apps for Indian Users

Apps are invading the market for various platforms; it has been available for shopping too. As people indulge in more shopping to guide them about the offers these apps have been brought up. There are numerous apps available today in the market which users can explore for a pleasant shopping experience. Even shopaholics who frequently shops and also malls have fancied using them.

Shopping Apps for Indian Users in order to keep them aware of the discounts and prices of various products.

eBay India

The eBay India Android app supports the barcode scanning technology of RedLaser so users can prefill the item details just by scanning the barcode of the product. The app comes with a nice home screen, where users can easily revise their Active Selling list, edit their unsold list and can even schedule an auction.

Those who use feature phones can also use the app through their phone browsers. It gives country options where users will have to select their country, accept terms and they are ready to shop. Through the eBay India app, users are able to do almost everything like browse, shop and sell along with managing their eBay activity.

They are also allowed to save their default search options so conducting the same search next time would not be difficult for them. The app is especially good for the sellers who can easily enter their shipment details, or can simply list what they intend to sell with the help of barcode scanner.


The ngpay Android app meets most of the shopping, entertainment and travel needs of the users. Every time users shop with the app, they earn reward points called ngPoints which can be later redeemed through exciting offers and deals. Ngpay android app is the best android app to book Travel tickets, movie tickets and shopping which can be done from your mobile phone.

The app allows users to pay using various types of credit or debit cards. The Android app makes sure the transactions are secure by asking for a six digit PIN every time. The PIN is not stored on the mobile handset either, so there is no risk for the users. The ngpay Android app is free for download.


This Android app from Naaptol allows people to shop easily on the Naaptol website. Here the users can browse more than 2 lakh products across 500 categories and they can get detailed information about those products as well. The app makes it very easy for the users to browse through the Naaptol database where even user generated sorting is also allowed.

With this app the buyers can have better shopping experience and meet their needs according to their budget. All these shopping apps are specially meant for people who do not have the idea of prices and discounts in the stores.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Avoid street coffee during pregnancy

Pregnant mothers should avoid consuming coffee from high street cafes as they contain more caffeine than recommended levels, researchers say.

The soon-to-be mothers inadvertently put the health of their unborn babies at risk by drinking coffee from such cafes.

The researchers analysed espressos from 20 coffee shops and found that there were huge variations in the amount of caffeine they contain - with the strongest having more than six times as much as the weakest.

The most worrying part was that the strongest example contained over 50 per cent more caffeine in a single cup than a pregnant woman is advised to take over the course of an entire day.

Fears about birth defects, miscarriage and premature delivery imply that pregnant women are advised to limit themselves to 200mg of caffeine a day.

This is generally equivalent to four cups of strong coffee, expected to contain 50mg of caffeine each.

But only one of the 20 coffees studied - the one from Starbucks - contained around this amount. All of the others were stronger, the Daily Mail reported.

According to the Royal Society of Chemistry journal Food and Function, four had more than 200mg in a single cup, with the strongest having more than 300mg.

Researcher Alan Crozier said that caffeine, which crosses the placenta to the unborn baby, usually takes five hours to break down in the body to half its previous level.

"There is clearly a problem. People at risk could unwittingly ingest far more caffeine than they would ever dream of," he said.

But the process can take up to 30 hours in certain groups, including children, liver disease sufferers and pregnant women.

An unborn baby's liver will struggle to break down caffeine, with potential long-term consequences.

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