A new experience of reviewing a book

After being in the programming domain for more than 4 years now and blogging for a similar timeframe, I got an opportunity to review a book.

This book is from Packt publishing company. Its called “C++ Application Development with Code::Blocks”

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Installing Ubuntu on USB Pendrive

Do you want to use your OS everywhere you go? Then the best way is to install it in your pendrive. Here’s a very simple 3 step procedure to install Ubuntu on your USB pendrive (in Windows):

http://www.ubuntu.com/download/desktop/create-a-usb-stick-on-windows

Though the name of the page says “create a usb stick on windows”, you can install any version of Ubuntu you want (provided you have its ISO file). Go ahead. Enjoy Ubuntu on the go!

The Facebook Story with proofs

The Lost Chapter
-by Aaron Greenspan, Sept 19, 2012.

Zuckerberg says “Facebook is ‘souped-up’ version of someone else’s Idea”.

The story behind Facebook’s origin in detail (with instant messenger chats between Zuckerberg and Aaron Greenspan). Aaron accusing Zuckerberg… this time with proofs.

http://www.aarongreenspan.com/writing/essay.html?id=80

Go through the “The Complete Timeline.pdf” and the IM chats. It clearly implies that Zuckerberg took (atleast) the idea of facebook from Aaron’s “Face book” on Harvard-sanctioned Website called houseSYSTEM. The pdf enlists all the events with minute details like Zuckerberg logging into houseSYSTEM’s face book, the help he took from Aaron on various technical and legal topics.

A summary of the above (big) article from “Business Insider”:
Zuckerberg Says Facebook Is ‘Souped-Up’ Version Of Someone Else’s Idea

Tata Photon+ in Ubuntu 10.04

As of today, Tata Photon+ EC152 doesn’t work on Windows 7. And they don’t have any patch or upgrade too. It works perfectly on Windows XP.
I tried and got it working on Linux – Ubuntu ‘Lucid Lynx’ 10.04
Here are the few simple steps:
1. Install the following libraries:
i. usb-modeswitch-data
ii. usb-modeswitch
(To download these libraries u’d need a net connection :D)

2. Open /etc/usb_modeswitch.d/12d1:1446 as root and change this line:

TargetProductList = “1001,1406,140c,14ac” to
TargetProductList = “1001,1406,140c,14ac,140b”

2.Right click on Network connections icon on Top right corner and select “Edit connections”(or goto System> Preferences> Network Connections)
3. Goto “Mobile Broadband” tab,
In the IPv4 settings, select Method: “Automatic (PPP)”

4. In ‘Mobile Broadband’ tab, set the following:
Number: #777
Username: your Tata Photon+ number@photon.ttml.in
e.g. 9221475882@photon.ttml.in
password: internet

No change in PPP settings.
Apply.

5. There’ll be notification that “Tata Indicom (Photyon+)” connection established and your photon should start working.
Conn established

Happy Surfing!

WassUP! – the making

WassUP! development process:
1. Working code based on ITU-T’s software for G.729.1. Added a “buddy list” where IP addresses of friends can be stored.
2. Added the setup project to the solution
– was not sure how to add 2 exe’s- encoder & decoder
– then added a "test.bat" file which "start"s the decoder & encoder. All the shortcuts to run the program now point to this file
This created the first version of WassUP!
There was just the desktop icon and "Program files/Default Company name/WassUP" folder.
I called it "Awaaz" but later changed on the suggestion by Nikhil.

3. Searched & changed the properties of the setup to exclude the "Default company name" & added my name & url as the manufacturer. Also added a shortcut to the “All Programs” Menu.
4. The next thing i needed was a cool icon. Searched for WassUP in google images but couldn’t get any eye-catching icon. Then inspired from Barney’s style of WassUP in how i met your mother, i searched for handprints and got this cool blue handprint. edited a bit in Photoshop & my icon was ready.

5. This version was tested on Nisarg’s Lapi successfully but failed on Nikhil’s PC. Question of compatibility making rounds in my head. I carried on with other updates but this was deep question to solve.
6. The installing GUI windows had some boring default images. thought of changing that too. looked for some cool "waves" design & finalised on 2 images. After Photoshoping i finalised the banner "WassUP banner2.jpg". btw its 500x70px in size(had to find that size too). This made the next version of WassUP! Tested. But, as i knew it didn’t work on Nikhil’s PC.

7. Gave a sample copy to Tushar for testing but it didn’t work there as well.

8. Someone suggested that the program is not working as OpenAL might have to be installed. I then included the small “oalinst.exe” setup of OpenAL as a custom action during the install process. AND IT WORKED! Nikhil could now use my program… & so can Tushar & all others.

7. Fancied by the various options i saw in Visual Studio while adding the above banner, i tried some more things. After searching a bit i found the way to add an “uninstall” option in the Start program menu. Now i have a folder “WassUP!” in the program menu which has shortcut to the program & uninstall- good bye “Add/Remove programs”. Thats my version 1.0.2.

8. Instead of going for file operations on buddy list through code, i gave a shortcut to it in the program menu. So the user can open it in Notepad & add/delete buddies. Also added a Readme.txt to explain in a few lines how to run the code. Thats ver 1.0.3.

9. I gave ver 1.0.3. to Nisarg, Nikhil, Purbita & Shilpa. No one gave any response. After i expressed my depression regarding this nikhil tried it out. The bug found was that only 1 way sound was going. Because as 1 person starts the program, his encoder(also the client) tries to connect with his buddy’s server which has not yet been started. After working on this, i added a calling mechanism in which the program tries to connect 5 times at 2.5sec intervals if the buddy has come online. Also added a feature at the listener to reply or reject a call. Thats ver 1.0.4.
And i posted in the blog now.

10. Within some hours some of my juniors tried it & reported. One thing they said was that at both ends u have to enter the IP addresses, while it should be just at the caller’s end- very relevant point.
Another suggestion was to add some sound whenever some one calls.
I m working on these and soon these features will be added in the next version.

Other features i want to add:
i. Recording a call option.
ii. checking the online status of a friend in the buddy list.
iii. GUI.