Categories
business idea Internet UK

Google “good to know” ads on London Underground (tube) in association with CAB

Google is now advertising on London Underground or Tube as it’s popularly known. I saw these ads on a central line train in London today. Here are a couple of images taken from my iPhone. The advertisements in the Tube are about security, data protection and family protection mainly. Google have teamed up with the Citizens Advice Bureau and more information can be found on http://www.google.co.uk/goodtoknow/. Google is not new to advertising on the tube and we’ve all seen those Google Chrome browser ads, but this time, it’s more philanthropic.

Google Good to Know Ad on London Underground - Sign out
Google Good to Know Ad on London Underground – Importance of signing out
Google Good to Know Ad on London Underground - Strong Password
Google Good to Know Ad on London Underground – How to keep a really strong password

I was very surprised to see these ads on London trains. Why would Google be so kind? Google has been taking the UK more seriously recently with recent news of Google investing in an East London tech zone. Also, with Google’s purchase of of UK businesses like Beat that Quote, this may be an attempt at being seen as a household name, “not just for search”.

Have you seen these ads?

Categories
Achievement India Internet reviews

Find modern office furniture in Delhi, India. Really good stuff!

One of my good friends has started an office furniture business. A couple of months ago he decided to go online with the entire catalogue etc. I did some research into this market and despite finding quite a few searches on Google India per month, I’m a bit skeptical about people buying this thing online. Secondly – if you do end up getting top rankings for “office furniture”, then its your corporate responsibility to deliver throughout India, else just market it for Delhi related keyphrases? We’ve been brain storming about all that. Here’s an article by him that explains how to choose office furniture. All the best to him! And boy, his stuff is really very good!

Choose the best Office Furniture Design in 3 easy steps

Around the world, there are various websites that offer office furniture but with so much choice, how do you go about choosing the best designs for your office furniture?
Following are some guidelines that’ll help you figure out how to choose the best furniture design for your office:

  • Be specific about what you need to buy – Don’t just waste your time browsing eye catching images. With numerous office furniture websites available, I would personally recommend you to first decide what exactly you want to buy for your office. Lets say you want to buy Storage Racks for your office. Then you must search specifically for Office Storage Racks rather than searching for Office Furniture. The reason being that when you would search for Office Furniture, you would also get results for Office Chairs, Office Bookshelves, Office Almirahs, Office Cabinets, Office Lockers etc. which is not your focus right now. So be specific whenever you search for a keyword. You don’t want to spend your time viewing good pictures of Office Lockers and Cabinets when you don’t want to buy them.
  • Checkout multiple websites for good bargains. While choosing furniture online, you must checkout at least 5 websites and see what all products they have to offer. All the websites must be different in designs but they would offer more or less similar products. Its very important to choose your design and then compare it on different websites for product features and maintenance features. Checking out other websites might also help you to discover some special offers which might not be available on a single website.
  • Don’t hesitate in requesting a quote. Often online visitors don’t request for a price quote. I think this is high time that they should understand that not all products which are sold online have a price tag attached with them. It is perfectly normal and often suggested for an online customer to ask for a price quote and a good bargain on a price that the seller is offering. It just takes less than 30 seconds to fill a small contact/request quote form and ask for a good bargain on the price. Alternately, it doesn’t even take 5 seconds to make a call to the vendor and negotiate on the prices. So if you need a good bargain on a product, do fill that small form and/or negotiate with the vendor.

I am sure all the aforesaid points will help you choose the right furniture for your office.

Don’t hesitate in requesting a quote.
Categories
Internet

Alexa launches keyword tool filled with skewed SEO data

I used to be a big fan of Alexa, in fact I still am for some niches – If you’re researching 2 sites that are targetted to SEOs or users interested in Internet marketing/search engine rankings, Alexa data will be quite accurate for US, UK and India but when it comes to non-technical industries, for example shoes, handbags or perfumes – Alexa is pretty useless.

Alexa has launched its own little keyword tool, which they should expand over time. This tool lists keywords that drive traffic to a site from search engines (data is gathered from users that use Alexa Toolbar). So I went ahead and checked Wikipedia’s keywords and I wasn’t surprised to find “SEO” as the second most “traffic driving” keyword for Wikipedia. Reason for this is that a high percentage of  SEOs or Internet Marketing experts around the world either have the Alexa toolbar installed (to check Alexa rankings of websites) or have a Firefox Addon that shows Alexa rank. Either way, maximum data received by Alexa is from people who have web related jobs and therefore is highly skewed.

According to Alexa - Keyword "SEO" drives high traffic to Wikipedia
According to Alexa - Keyword "SEO" drives high traffic to Wikipedia
SEO drives traffic to Wikipedia
SEO drives traffic to Wikipedia

Now this is obviously incorrect if you check Wikipedia’s stats that they openly share at http://wikistics.falsikon.de.

Alexa will continue being in my arsenal of tools, but expecting Alexa to deliver correct traffic rankings and keywords for websites that are not related to SEO, web design etc, is not something I can bank upon.

Categories
Internet

Gmail ignores dots in usernames, sets new standards. Thanks Priyaroop Singh

I was with a friend whose name is Priyaroop Singh (and let me add that because his name is Priyaroop Singh, brother of Hemdeep Singh, and he’s an IT geek, sooner or later he’ll find this article and post a message here). We were standing outside his place when as usual, technology was is discussion. We spoke about how it started with USA.net, followed with Hotmail and now except Gmail and Yahoo mail, we don’t even like talking about any other email service. So that’s the background.

Priyaroop Singh told me that Google assigns only one username per person irrespective of the dots. What this means is – arjun@gmail.com and ar.jun@gmail.com cannot be 2 different users. If I grab arjun@gmail.com, then that’s it, I’ve ruled out anyone ever getting a.rjun@gmail.com, arj.un@gmail.com etc. Also, if you were to send an email to arju.n@gmail.com, it will reach me because I have arjun@gmail.com. How cool is that? I didn’t believe him. I think I even owe him a 100 quid for this, but then I came home and checked. Man! This is correct.

So if you have johnsmith@gmail.com or johnsmith@googlemail.com and I sent emails to john.smith@gmail.com, j.o.h.n.s.m.i.t.h@gmail.com and jo.hn.sm.ith@googlemail.com – they’d all reach you!

Now add to that another exciting thing that I’ve found. If you have you@gmail.com and I send an email to you+areagoodperson@gmail.com – it will still reach you. That’s your username followed by a “+” (plus) followed by a string without spaces will reach you too!

I hope you find this article as revealing and unbelievable as I first found this fact when Priyaroop Singh first told me. So here’s a big thank you to you Priyaroop Singh and if I ever forget that 100 quid, you can forward me a link to this blog post. Btw, our plan to re-live the movie “Hangover” is still alive and the first round in Vegas will be on me !

Article keywords:

Priyaroop Singh, Hemdeep Singh, Mayank Vats, Singh Priyaroop, Priyaroop, Roopy, Roopie, Roofie, Roofies (in our drinks) 😀 😀
Categories
Achievement inspiration Internet News World

Are Google Talk, Twitter, Facebook days over? Welcome Google Wave!

Google Talk days are over. For all you Gtalk addicts – You abandoned MSN messenger first, then you quit Yahoo chat. Now its time to welcome Google Wave. It is awesome and it’s here to give Twitter and Facebook a hard time, although it is very well integrated with Twitter.

I’m not really talking about Google Wave replacing Facebook or Twitter. The question I have is, with such dynamic integration with Twitter, Facebook and other API based services, will you even need to log into Twitter via Twitter.com ever again to access anything? Already, with Twitter applications, I hardly ever use Twitter.com’s web interface to update my Tweets, its always some application.

Although Google Wave is coming out in a browser-only version, it’s just a matter of time before we’ll have hundreds if not thousands of applications developed around Google Wave. With the failure (or what they call a failure at Google) of Orkut and Google Friend Connect, this is Google’s attempt to regain a slice of the communication market.

I am interested in how it will integrate with Google search and other search engines and how it will affect Internet Marketing and SEO for businesses in days to come. That will probably be the deciding factor whether Google Wave replaces Twitter for businesses.

In a nutshell – Google Wave is a multi-stream communication system that integrates with Twitter, Facebook and other applications for seemless communication, conferencing, emailing and media sharing.

Only Google Wave’s public launch will tell if I’ll ever need to log on to Twitter or Google Talk again.

Check out these videos to find out more about Google Wave and what makes it extra special..

Categories
holiday destinations Internet News Travel

Dubai holidays

Rotating floors - Dubai holidays - Visit the world's firsts
Rotating floors – Dubai holidays – Visit the world’s firsts

Dubai holidays remind you of Las Vegas, that’s the kind of effect it has on you, no doubt about it. This classiest of Middle East’s cities is a great place to visit on your holidays.  The big downside is that it’s an expensive city to stay and shop in. We went to several malls and did a lot of shopping (most of it was window shopping), but I’m getting ahead of myself.

The desert is impressive with unbelievable sand dunes that extend as far as the eye can see. Our full day desert tour was a novel experience, and something I’ve since recommended to many friends. Our Camel ride was different from the elephant ride we experienced in India, but was pretty good nonetheless. This is perhaps the most authentic insight into Dubai’s traditional culture one could hope for. Our city tour was quite organized and travelling through Dubai in double-decker buses was fun.

The boat ride across creek side was a good experience and worth it for the city views. The city has plenty of buses and taxi fares are reasonable. Taxis are tough to hire on Thursdays and Fridays so ensure that your hotel calls one in advance. I’m not much of a skiing person but my wife did try her hands at skiing in the enormous Mall of Emirates.

Anyone going for holidays in Dubai should know – Attire – Swimsuits are o.k. on the beach but make sure you’re wearing casual/smart wear in the city. Never, repeat never roam bare-chested, let’s just say it could create problems for you. Women must dress conservatively. January was surprisingly pleasant for a place that’s in the desert. Dubai laws prohibit sale of liquor outside hotel bars and restaurants. Don’t Ever Drink and drive, you may regret it, their laws are super-strict and you have been warned. Food is quite palatable, even in the more reasonable places, and I personally liked the Shawarma, made from chicken. Remember to be courteous and don’t chew with your mouth open. The only time we visited a fancy restaurant, the food was lip smacking. Shisha Bars are quite popular and apparently great places for socialising.

No description of the city can be complete without mentioning Dubai’s legendary shopping. We quite liked Deira Gold Souk, and even bought some pretty gold jewellery.
The malls were incredible, and make sure you’re carrying extra cash, because the variety is incredible and the temptation to spend money strong. We had a great time and next time we plan to go in March when the Dubai Shopping Festival is in full force. Booked using Zip holidays .


Categories
inspiration Internet News World

Wolfram Alpha Screenshots and My Test Reviews

I have been intrigued with the whole Wolfram Alpha hype for a long time and when finally I got to lay my hands on this engine, I was pleasantly surprised. I have to say, this is way beyond my expectations (I mean better) and the extent to which they’ve researched before launching it is really mind boggling.

Microsoft tried for ages to solve Integral and Derivative mathematical problems. I remember coming across a set of software to solve some complex Integration problems during A levels – never found anything good.

Wolf Ram Alpha is an answer engine that doesn’t return results like Google. It returns answers straight to the point. I have a few screenshots of what Wolfram Alpha can do. Get ready for an eyebrow raising experience.

What do you think about Wolfram Alpha? It’s 4pm CST and Wolfram Alpha launches at 7pm CST. 3 hours to go. Can’t wait.

For all those still talking about “hype”, just imagine the detail of the algorithm that runs this engine. It is remarkable. All the best to Mr Stephen Wolfram and Wolfram Alpha!

Categories
Internet Money News

Online Gambling laws in India. Are online casinos, poker and slots allowed in India?

Good question. I did some research on it for quite a bit today and found the following answer: NO! Laws don’t permit online gambling in India.

The only casinos in India reside in the state/city of Goa. These are on yachts that take passengers (gamblers) from the shore, then cruise to International waters to start gambling. News has it that 3 new companies are starting Gambling cruise liners. Result: Indians who go out to neighboring country Nepal to gamble, now need not. They can go to Goa instead. However, these yachts (or ships) charge heavily for their cruises to encourage more foreigners and to keep petty local gamblers off. The Casino Goa (first and only yacht where gambling is legal in India) is owned part by an Australian investor and part by the yacht making company – some Advani.

The Indian 1867 Gambling Act prohibits gambling anywhere on Indian soil except lottery and horse racing. No wonder people flock in their thousands to bet at polo grounds in Delhi. The lottery on the other hand is state controlled.

Some argue that the Indian Gambling act of 1867 doesn’t say anything about online gambling or betting, obviously because the Internet didn’t exist then. But on some law sites experts claim that the same act can be used to prohibit online gambling. There are fines for anyone providing a place to gamble and for gamblers in order of a few hundred dollars or a few months’ prison.

Fact is, India needs a new, clearer, updated Gambling law. It doesn’t make sense for India to allow gambling because of Poverty, but if there are regulations on the amount of money that can be spent per day or per week, per person, then I guess it can become a massive industry in India. Some international companies including Jackpotcity.co.in are flocking to India to test the online casino waters. Time will tell whether they succeed or fail. My personal experience says it will be a success, considering over 30% of all online gamblers are from Asian countries.

Related links:

http://ezinearticles.com/?Online-Gambling&id=1223920

http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview/id/8021.html

http://forums.digitalpoint.com/showthread.php?t=247861

Feel free to post your views: Should gambling be allowed in India? Why?

Categories
Internet News

Approximately what percentage of Costa Rica’s land area is in protected areas?

Today’s question on Marriott World of Rewards:

Approximately what percentage of Costa Rica’s land area is in protected areas?

Answer:

23 percent

(Obtained from Wikipedia)

A little about Costa Rica and its protected areas

Costa Rica lies in that little strip below Mexico between the two continents – North America and South America. Surrounded by the Pacific ocean and Carribean sea on either sides, Costa Rica has plenty of beaches and the weather every holiday maker dreams of.

A fantastic place to live, Costa Rica was ranked 4th among Latin American in terms of HDI (Human Development Index) and 1st in all Americas and 5th world-wide in terms of Environmental Performance Index with 23% of its area preserved in protected areas.

No wonder the question about Costa Rica had to do with its protected areas.

Good luck to everyone! Have received almost 50,000 participants on this site, and never once has anyone claimed winning a prize. Hope we hear something today. Tomorrow is the last day of the quiz 🙂

Categories
Internet News

What word is used to describe the Mumbai based, Hindi language film industry?

Welcome everyone to Marriott World of Rewards day 23, question 23. Today’s destination – India, today’s question:

What word is used to describe the Mumbai-based, Hindi-language film industry?

Answer:

Bollywood

Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai
Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai

Probably the largest film industry after Hollywood, Bollywood referes to Hindustani Langauge Indian cinema and is often misunderstood to stand for all Indian cinema. There are others like Tollywood, Kollywood, Mollywood for regional language cinema within India. No prizes for guessing that these words are synonyms of Hollywood and thus, their origin.

Bollywood, unlike Hollywood is not a place or physical entity.

Read more about the history of Bollywood at Wikipedia – here.

Related Stories:

Aamir Khan’s Ghajini to rock Bollywood

Mumbai University to launch new website.