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Messages - Md. Shahinur A. Khan

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Business & Entrepreneurship / Couple bloom tulips first in Bangladesh
« on: February 20, 2020, 11:35:58 AM »
This could be a great opportunity for business those have a hobby of gardening.

Shykh Seraj

During the mid-80s, I got engaged with Bangladesh Television’s agricultural documentary programme Mati O Manush (Soil & People). During that time, I met a Belgian named Jean Paul Perrin, who came to Bangladesh through an NGO and had a bondage with floriculture or flower farming. He worked on gerbera flower back in 1988 and also worked on chrysanthemum and carnation flowers. He was successful in some of them. He also tried to cultivate tulip, the most acclaimed ornamental flower. Jean even showed me a bulb of tulip which was the first tulip bulb I had ever seen. But the flower did not bloom that time and he could not become successful in growing tulip in Bangladesh. I had been fortunate enough to visit Keukenhof of The Netherlands back in May, 2015. For the very first time, I could see tulip and had the idea how its magnificent field would look like.

A few days back, I went to Kewa village located in Gazipur’s Sreepur upazila. Today, I will tell my dear readers an outstanding story of a young entrepreneur couple. They are involved with floriculture and flower farming for about 15 years. They have managed to bloom Tulip on Bangladeshi soil for the very first time. When I first heard this, it sounded unbelievable. So many projects, so many people have tried to make it happen from time to time but no one succeeded. But this young duo hasn’t only been able to grow tulip, but has successfully managed to grow capsicum, gladiolus, gerbera, China rose and many other flower varieties. Delwar Hossain along with his wife Shelly Hossain made this miracle happen a month back.

I don’t know where Jean Paul Perrin lives now as I don’t have any contacts with him. But I want to let him know that, “Dear friend, your dream has come true in the land of Bangladesh. Your mission has been accomplished by a young Bangladeshi couple Delwar and Shelly.”

“When did it first bloom?”

“A month back.”

One morning, Delwar came to his European orchard and saw something red is blooming. Then he took a picture of it and sent it to his wife, Shelly. She forwarded the photo to The Netherlands. They both knew it was tulip but was later confirmed that yes the couple made the impossible, possible. They grew tulip.

Back in 2017, the duo received a short training from a Dutch flower company named Royal Van Zanten in The Netherlands. They returned with 60,000 bulbs of lilium and other agricultural tools. Over the years they have remained in touch with the organisation, as part of which they received 1,000 tulip bulbs for free.

I asked Delwar and Shelly, whether they have any plans to sell the tulips they grew.

“No, we don’t want to sell. At least two or three people have called us from Gulshan asking whether we would sell those. But our point is everything cannot be measured by money,” replied Delwar.

“People from our region are coming here, seeing tulips, taking selfies; not everyone can afford to visit Kashmir or The Netherlands to enjoy this view. It is a great pleasure to us,” added Shelly.

“If everything goes fine, we have plans to sell next season,” both said with a wide smile on their faces.

They have kept the tulips under net house. The couple say it would have been better if they could mix urea with some more fertilizers and pour the liquid mix into the flowers, but instead they are giving the inputs directly. They look forward to get water soluble fertilizer. The agriculture officers have already confirmed that they have a very good soil to grow tulips here. Delwar and Shelly believe more tulips can be grown in the colder regions like the northern district of the country. They are trying to grow tulips in a larger shade so that they can sell it next year. The market price for each tulip would be around Tk 70 (USD 0.82) per flower.

Shelly looks after the international communication. She has seen a great possibility in this commercial flower production project. The couple is very serious about learning the language skills which will soon deliver them even better news in the near future.

“My background and studies tell me to go for teaching profession, but all my passion and my world is bonded with Delwar and this beautiful flower orchard,” says Shelly.

“The most important fact is both of us love nature, trees, flowers and farming. We have been married for the past 14 years and anything you love, won’t disappoint you,” believes Delwar.

“My father was a traditional farmer and it was in my blood to carry on with the heritage of profession,” says Delwar.

“Flowers always make me feel good. So, at first I bought gladiolus bulbs, worth Tk 4,000 (USD 47.05), knowing that I would be able to sell each flower at Tk 15 (USD 0.17),” Delwar added.

“Then I bought 20,000 bulbs from Sher Ali Sardar, a flower farmer from Jashore’s Godkhali. I have sold almost 35,000 sticks of flowers at Tk 24 per stick and earned around Tk 8,40,000 (USD 9881) from gladiolas.

The obstacle they have is the bulb price goes up to Tk 12 (USD 0.14), which is caused by the quarantine cost of up to Tk 2 (USD 0.02) for each bulb and there is also 10 percent tax included for each bulb.


Source: CNN Business, By Rachel Metz
Updated 0117 GMT (0917 HKT) February 12, 2019

San Francisco (CNN Business)Google Maps wants to make it easier for people find their way in busy urban spaces, and it thinks large cartoon arrows can help.

On Monday, Google Maps began letting some users test a new augmented-reality feature in its mobile app that shows graphics — such as highlighted arrows and street names floating in midair — over a live view from their camera on their smartphone screens. It is meant to help them navigate city streets.

Google's Rachel Inman, who works on user-experience for the new feature, said the company hopes to make it simpler to go between the two-dimensional map on your phone and the three-dimensional world around you.

"We've all had the experience of coming up from the subway and walking a half block or a full block in the wrong direction and being really annoyed when we have to turn around and walk the way we were supposed to go in the first place," she told CNN Business at a real-life demonstration of the feature in San Francisco on Monday. How Alexa knows the difference between a breaking window and a wine glass.

Yet while many companies, including Google, have been working on augmented reality products for years, few had luck with consumers. (Pokémon Go, created by Niantic, which spun out of Google, is a notable exception.) There are two main reasons for this: it's hard to figure out what to do with the technology, and difficult to make virtual images actually mesh with the real objects around you.
Google Maps thinks it has cracked this nut, and it gave CNN Business a peek at it during a walk from a park on San Francisco's waterfront to a coffee shop about half a mile away. Using the feature within Google Maps on a demo smartphone, I saw the names of upcoming streets hover in the air ahead of me on the screen. When I was supposed to turn, large arrows appeared to help guide my way. Upon reaching my destination, a big red Google Maps pin popped up in my field of view.

As the feature is in the early stages of user testing, Google still has some kinks to work out. For instance, I noticed that the AR images in the app stopped working several times while I was walking to the coffee shop.
But if I was in a new city, it could save me time debating which direction to go — especially if I had just hopped off a bus or train.

Google is testing new AR features for its Maps app.

Google said that for now, the feature is only being offered to a small group of people who frequently use and contribute to Google Maps. The company isn't saying when it will be generally available.
"We are still learning a lot; this is still very early," cautioned Marek Gorecki, an engineering manager for Google Maps.
One reason the technology takes time to perfect is that it is difficult, even now, to reliably find where you are and what direction you're facing on a smartphone map.

Typically, a smartphone uses its built-in GPS and compass to determine your location and what direction you are facing in a mapping app. In crowded cities, however, this can get tricky. GPS relies on having a line of sight to pass along radio signals from far-off satellites to your phone, so tall buildings can make it hard to figure out exactly where you are. The compass, too, can be thrown off in urban places because of the abundance of magnetic objects such as metal in buildings, cars, buses and city infrastructure — such as light poles.

Google is using artificial intelligence to help figure out where things are. The company has a decade's worth of images of streets and landmarks around the world from its Street View program. The new AR feature has users hold up their phone so it can match up details about landmarks (including buildings) with those visuals that the app has already captured. Google Maps uses machine learning to determine which details are likely to be the same and which are best to ignore (such as trees, since they may change depending on the time of year).

Once Google Maps has a more precise idea of where you are, it can overlay virtual images on what it sees through the smartphone's camera. They may look more like they are integrated with reality — something that has long been a challenge for companies building AR into smartphone apps.

For now, Google is trying to keep these images simple. An earlier prototype of the AR feature displayed fireworks when a user approached their destination in Google Maps, said Gorecki. The team decided that wasn't a good idea.
"It was mostly a distraction," he said. "You don't want to overdo it."


পাবনার ঈশ্বরদী উপজেলার পাকশী এলাকায় পদ্মা নদীর মাঝে লোহার বিশাল খণ্ড ভেসে উঠেছে। ধারণা করা হচ্ছে, মুক্তিযুদ্ধের সময় বোমার আঘাতে ধ্বংস হওয়া দেশের সর্ববৃহৎ রেলওয়ে সেতু হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজের স্প্যানের অংশ এটি।
হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজের তিন কিলোমিটার ভাটিতে জেগে ওঠা স্প্যানটি দেখার জন্য প্রতিদিন উৎসুক মানুষ ভিড় করছে।
পাকশী এলাকার কয়েকজন বাসিন্দা বলেন, ২০ থেকে ২৫ দিন আগে পদ্মার লক্ষ্মীকুণ্ডা প্রান্তে নদীতে মাছ ধরার সময় জেলেদের জাল পানির নিচে আটকে যায়। কয়েকজন জেলে পানিতে ডুব দিয়ে জাল ছাড়াতে গিয়ে প্রকাণ্ড একটি বস্তুর সন্ধান পান। তাঁরা জাল ছাড়িয়ে সেখান থেকে চলে আসেন। নদীতে পানি শুকিয়ে এলে সেখানে বড় আকৃতির একটি লৌহখণ্ড দেখতে পাওয়া যায়। গত চার-পাঁচ দিন থেকে নদীতে লোহার আরও দুটি অংশ দেখতে পান জেলেরা। এ খবর ছড়িয়ে পড়লে আশপাশের প্রবীণ ব্যক্তিরা নৌকায় করে তা দেখতে যান। তাঁরা ধারণা করেন, এটি হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজের স্প্যানের অংশ।
পাকশী এলাকায় পদ্মার পাড়ের চা দোকানি আলম প্রামাণিক বলেন, রেলওয়ের কয়েকজন লোক এসে নদীর ওই স্থানটি দেখে তাঁদের জানিয়ে গেছেন, ভয় পাওয়ার কিছু নেই। হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজের ভেঙে পড়া স্প্যানের অংশ এগুলো।
নায়েব সরদার নামের এক মাঝি বলেন, পদ্মায় পানি শুকিয়ে যাওয়ায় এখন আশপাশে চর জেগে উঠেছে। মানুষ হেঁটে চরে এসে নৌকা ভাড়া করে ওই স্প্যান দেখছে। শুক্রবারে মানুষের ভিড় বেশি হয়। ঘাট থেকে নৌকায় ওই স্থানে পৌঁছাতে ২০ থেকে ৩০ মিনিট লাগে।
এসব খণ্ডাংশ হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজের বলে ধারণা করা হচ্ছে। মুক্তিযুদ্ধের সময় ব্রিজটির একটি স্প্যান ভেঙে পড়েগতকাল বুধবার বিকেলে সরেজমিনে দেখা যায়, পদ্মা নদীর মাঝে জেগে উঠেছে ছোট-বড় তিনটি লৌহখণ্ড। বৃষ্টি পড়তে থাকায় মানুষের ভিড় নেই। তবে আশপাশে দু-একজন জেলেকে দেখা যায়।
পাকশী বিভাগীয় রেলওয়ে সেতু প্রকৌশলীর কার্যালয় সূত্র জানায়, মুক্তিযুদ্ধের সময় বোমা হামলায় হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজের ১২ নম্বর স্প্যানটি নদীতে ভেঙে পড়ে। সেই স্প্যানের অংশ দীর্ঘদিন পর নদীতে দেখা যাচ্ছে। হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজে মোট ১৫টি স্প্যান রয়েছে। মজবুত লোহার প্রতিটি স্প্যানের ওজন ১ হাজার ২৫০ মেট্রিক টন। এগুলোর প্রতিটির দৈর্ঘ্য ৩৬০ ফুট। এত বিশাল আকৃতির স্প্যান নদী থেকে ওঠানোর মতো যন্ত্রপাতি বর্তমানে রেলওয়ের নেই। ভেঙে পড়ার পর থেকে স্রোতে স্প্যানটি সেতু থেকে তিন কিলোমিটার দূরে ভেসে গেছে।
বিভাগীয় সেতু প্রকৌশলী আরিফুল ইসলাম প্রথম আলোকে বলেন, তিনি গত রোববার হার্ডিঞ্জ ব্রিজের স্প্যানের অংশটি সরেজমিনে দেখেছেন। তিনি লোকমুখে শুনেছেন, ভেঙে পড়ার পর স্প্যানটি নদীতে ভেসে যায়। সে সময় নদীতে প্রচণ্ড স্রোত থাকায় সেটি তোলা সম্ভব হয়নি। বিষয়টি তিনি ঊর্ধ্বতন কর্তৃপক্ষকে জানিয়েছেন। এটি সংরক্ষণ করা প্রয়োজন।


« on: November 12, 2015, 11:59:01 AM »
Deal signed with French company

Bangladesh yesterday signed a $248-million deal with French company Thales Alenia Space for manufacturing and launching the country's first satellite: Bangabandhu-1.

The company has to complete the project by 2017, according to the deal. But if it fails to meet the deadline, it will have to pay fines.

The total project cost will run into Tk 2,967.95 crore, with about 56 percent of the fund coming from foreign loans. The government will provide the rest, Md Golam Razzaque, project director of Bangbandhu-1 satellite, told The Daily Star.

The government would have to pay back the loans in 15 years. But the interest rate for the loans was yet to be fixed, he said.

BTRC officials involved with the project said the agreement would be effective for five years but the BTRC could extend it. Thales Alenia would train Bangladeshi technicians for ground handling and maintenance of the satellite.

Shahjahan Mahmood, chairman of Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission, and Jean Loic Galle, president and chief executive officer of Thales Alenia Space, inked the deal in the capital's Sonargaon Hotel.

BTRC officials said the satellite would narrow the digital divide, create jobs and facilitate services such as direct-to-home broadcasting facilities.

It would also help improve weather forecast system and facilitate exploration of natural resources on land and in sea.

Bangladesh's satellite-related needs are now met by renting bandwidth from different operators for almost $14 million a year. Once launched, Bangabandhu-1 will save this annual cost, they added.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Tarana Halim, state minister for posts and telecommunication, said the government wanted to launch the commercial and broadcast satellite on December 16, 2017 to mark the 45th anniversary of the country's victory in the Liberation War.

“This contract is the final step towards fulfilling our long-cherished dream of launching the first satellite of Bangladesh -- Bangabandhu Satellite-1,” she said.

After signing the deal, Shahjahan said, “We are entering the space age and it [the satellite] will create history for the country.”

He said the BTRC would set up a company to run the satellite business.

In 15 years, the country would earn $1 billion by leasing out transponders and another $1.5 billion by selling other services to different countries.

Once the project is completed, Bangladesh will be the 57th country to have a broadcast and communication satellite, said the BTRC chairman.

Jean Loic Galle, the CEO of Thales Alenia Space, said the project could help change Bangladesh's socio-economic condition.

Under the agreement, the French company will be paid $248 million (Tk 1,951 crore) and incentives if it launches the satellite before the deadline.

Bangabandhu-1 would be launched either from satellite launching station Ariane France or SpaceX in the USA, local representatives of Thales Alenia told The Daily Star.

Bangladesh will launch the satellite in the orbital slot at longitude 119.1 degree east with 40 transponders. Earlier this year, it bought the slot from Intersputnik, a Russian satellite company, for $28 million for 15 years.

The French company has already started construction work at two ground handling stations at Telecom Staff College in Gazipur and Betbunia Earth Station in Rangamati, said officials.

Razzaque said the project would reach breakeven in five years. It would allow the regulator to sell excess capacity to other nations.

The satellite will be able to provide services to all South Asian countries, as well as Indonesia, the Philippines, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, if its frequency is properly coordinated, he added.

The telecom regulator floated tenders in April and received bids from four companies -- Thales Alenia Space, China's Great Wall Industry Corporation, USA's Orbit ATA and Canada's MDA.

Thales Alenia was the second lowest bidder with an offer of $248 million while the MDA was the lowest bidder with $222.75 million.

On October 20, the cabinet purchase committee approved the deal in favour of Thales Alenia, as the other participants became non-responsive during the bidding process, according to BTRC officials.

Both financial aspect and technical side were considered in selecting the bidder, they added.


Zia Haider Rahman's book garnered rave reviews when it was published last year. Photo taken from BBC

Bangladeshi born writer Zia Haider Rahman has won the James Tait Black Literary Prizes, Britain's oldest literary award, for his debut novel In the Light of What We Know.
The novelist has joined some of the world’s greatest names in literature, including DH Lawrence, Graham Greene, Angela Carter and Ian McEwan, by winning the prize this year. The winner of the prize was announced at the Edinburgh International Book festival yesterday, reports The Times of India. The 10,000 pound prize has been awarded by the University of Edinburgh annually since 1919.

In the Light of What We Know, for which he won the prize in fiction, was released in the spring of 2014 and was critically acclaimed internationally.

Zia Haiders "In the Light of What We Know" is a bold novel set on the backdrop of war and financial crisis that defined the beginning of this century. Photo taken from Wikipedia.
The author was born in Sylhet division in Bangladesh before his family migrated to UK after the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971. He was educated at Balliol College, Oxford. He also attended Cambridge, Munich, and Yale Universities for further studies.

"Zia Haider Rahman addresses a whole range of issues - the war in Afghanistan, the rise of Muslim fundamentalism and the banking crisis. Moreover, he also explores problematic areas of politics and finance, which are often exiled from the pages of fiction, immersing his readers, dauntingly but comprehensibly. The novel's impressive scope is complemented by Rahman's ability to locate the personal in the political," reports The Times of India quoting Randall Stevenson of University of Edinburgh and chairman of the James Tait Black Prize for fiction.
Zia Haiders "In the Light of What We Know" is a bold novel set on the backdrop of war and financial crisis that defined the beginning of this century. Photo taken from Wikipedia.

The novel revolves around an investment banker who receives a surprise visitor at his West London townhouse on one morning in September 2008, at a time his marriage was on the verge of collapsing. This is a bold novel set on the backdrop of war and financial crisis that defined the beginning of this century.

The protagonist recognizes his long-lost friend who was a mathematics prodigy and mysteriously disappeared years earlier, resurfacing as if for some powerful confession. The novel takes readers from Kabul to London, New York, Islamabad, Oxford, and Princeton on a thrilling journey exploring love, belonging, science, and war.

According to the publishers, it is an age-old story of friendship and betrayal between the visitor, a man seeking atonement for his desperate effort to move on after his wrong beginnings, and the narrator telling the story of his friend grasping at the limits of words and knowing.


Latest Technology / CASIO The Smartwatch Pioneer
« on: July 02, 2015, 03:01:53 PM »
Japanese watch maker Casio Computer Co. saw the potential of the wrist for gadgets with extra functions decades before Apple. Now, company president Kazuhiro Kashio talks about its new smartwatches to be rolled out next year.

Follow the link to see their journey making smartwatches.

Ramadan and Fasting / Ramadan calendar 2015.
« on: June 17, 2015, 12:52:23 PM »


The 3D-printed home has been accomplished -- and apparently the next step is something a little more structurally challenging. A 3D printing company based in Amsterdam, The Netherlands has developed a revolutionary, multi-axis robotic 3D printer that can "draw" structures in the air -- and it's planning to build a bridge over a canal in the heart of the city, reports

"We research and develop groundbreaking, cost-effective robotic technology with which we can 3D print beautiful, functional objects in almost any form," wrote MX3D on the project web page. "The ultimate test? Printing an intricate, ornate metal bridge for a special location to show what our robots and software, engineers, craftsmen and designers can do."

The bridge will be designed by artist and designer Joris Laarman, who helped develop the Mataerial 3D printer -- or MX3D-Resin -- and the MX3D-Metal, a robotic 3D printer that combined the MX3D-Resin with a welder to be able to "draw" fast-setting metal structures, the Tech-based new site reports.

This is the technique that will be used to print the bridge out of steel. Small increments of molten metal are welded to the existing structure, creating lines of steel. By printing multiple lines, the printer will be able to create a strong, complex structure that spans the canal -- printing its own supports along the way so that it can operate autonomously.

"I strongly believe in the future of digital production and local production, in 'the new craft'," Laarman said.

"This bridge will show how 3D printing finally enters the world of large-scale, functional objects and sustainable materials while allowing unprecedented freedom of form. The symbolism of the bridge is a beautiful metaphor to connect the technology of the future with the old city, in a way that brings out the best of both worlds."

The team has perfected and tested the robotic printer, creating a metal sculpture of intersecting lines. For the bridge, the team envisions two robots working together in tandem, starting on one bank and working towards the other; in an animation of the process, four robots work together, two on each side of the canal, working to meet in the middle -- a technique that would undoubtedly place less stress on the bridge.

MX3D has also shown several designs, indicating that the bridge will be a cantilevered arch, although the final design is yet to be revealed. That, along with the exact location of the bridge, will be revealed "soon," MX3D said.

Construction on the bridge is scheduled to begin in September 2015.

Follow the link for video:

Teaching & Research Forum / An Education in Life Skills
« on: June 13, 2015, 01:59:52 PM »

There's a saying, when a seed of dream is implanted in a child's mind, it remains an influential thought forever and grows over time to a fully grown tree. Accordingly, our team of “Peace, Prosperity & Civic Education” of South Asia's largest youth change-maker platform, South Asian Youth Society (SAYS), undertook the initiative to conduct workshops to impart education to the kids who are not from a privileged background.

In Japan, children are taught etiquette, ethics, public duty, basic life skills and much more from a very early age. In Bangladesh, children from advantaged families go to coaching centres for extra learning, to get admission in the top ranking schools and earn good grades. The underprivileged children barely get the education they need. Hence, our team decided to educate them with some basic life skills and civic responsibilities.

The first workshop was conducted on March 21, 2015, at Tejgaon Farm Govt. Primary School, where the students from classes III to V took part in interactive sessions. The knowledge of first aid for emergencies was demonstrated practically by Dr. Tasnuva Nuhat Shafin. Citizens of our country are not well equipped with the knowledge of traffic signs and signals. They are also reluctant to use the safer mediums of road crossing. So, the students were introduced to different traffic rules and regulations by Tahrima H. Moon. They were taught how to maintain cleanliness, and a brief discussion was held on the importance of checking the manufacturing and expiration date on packaged products.

The last session was to encourage the students to be more vocal with the practice of public speaking, through which they will have the courage and confidence to articulate their ideas and visions. A student of class IV exclaimed, “I want to be a software engineer!”

Later on, a survey observed that the students could remember the first aid knowledge, identify traffic signs and signals, maintain cleanliness and also behave with good manners. Our team conducted the 2nd workshop on May 6, 2015 at Aminuddin Govt. Primary School.

We, the team members – from varied backgrounds but united under one platform –were part of this incredible experience, which sparked and invigorated our interests to embark on more initiatives like this.

The writer is a member of South Asian Youth Society (SAYS) and an undergraduate student of Khulna University of Engineering & Technology (KUET).


Place / Barra Airport (Scotland)
« on: June 04, 2015, 10:19:29 AM »
Barra Airport (Scottish Gaelic: Port-adhair Bharraigh) (IATA: BRR, ICAO: EGPR) (also known as Barra Eoligarry Airport) is a short-runway airport (or STOLport) situated in the wide shallow bay of Traigh Mhòr at the north tip of the island of Barra in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. The airport is unique, being the only one in the world where scheduled flights use a beach as the runway.[3] The airport is operated by Highlands and Islands Airports Limited, which owns most of the regional airports in mainland Scotland and the outlying islands. Barra Airport opened in 1936.

The beach is set out with three runways in a triangle, marked by permanent wooden poles at their ends, in directions 07/25, 11/29, 15/33. This almost always allows the Twin Otters that serve the airport to land into the wind. At high tide these runways are under the sea: flight times vary with the tide. Emergency flights occasionally operate at night from the airport, with vehicle lights used to illuminate the runway and reflective strips laid on to the beach.

Barra Airport also has a CAA Ordinary Licence (Number P792) that allows flights for the public transport of passengers or for flying instruction as authorised by the licensee (Highlands & Islands Airports Limited). The aerodrome is not licensed for night use.

Source: Wikipedia

Internet / Email Mistakes You Do Not Want to Make at Work
« on: June 02, 2015, 10:02:31 AM »
According to The Radicati Group – 175 billion email messages will be sent on average every day. This number is predicted to rise to 260 billion daily messages by 2015, with the typical business email user to send and receive 125 emails each day. If this world was perfect then each and every email would be sent to the right person, have no spelling mistakes and contain perfect netiquette. Unfortunately the world, and us human beings, are not perfect. In fact, we are often far from perfect. In being so, a percentage of those 260 billion daily messages will be flawed and a percentage of those flawed will be seriously flawed.

Do NOT try these at work:

1) Responding to an email before reviewing all new messages – Especially in a group email situation, this can lead to a “Woohoo I have a Facebook Profile, when everybody else has already converted to Google+” situation – Check those new messages in case somebody has already beaten you to the post.

2) Forwarding useless emails -You’ve heard of spam right? Well, something that you find extremely hilarious may not be quite so funny to the next person, there’s no need to spam our already full inboxes with chain letters.

3) Sending an email before you mean to – This can result in the wrong person receiving your email, or the right person receiving a half-written note… Not a good look! The best way to avoid this situation is to only enter the recipients details once you’ve finished writing your email.

4) Including your email signature on every email – Your co-workers know who you work for. You’re customers know what you sell. There is no need to repeat your email signature in every situation. Here I’ll mention our product, Crossware Mail Signature, for Lotus Notes – With this you can centrally manage every signature in your company, you can even set conditions such as a promotional banner being sent only on first contact, and creating completely separate signatures for your internal and external messages.

5) Replying to all unintentionally – It can be a seriously problem when you send a personal reply to a lot of people, something that leads to many people losing their job. Only ever use this button when you are certain that is what you want to do. In any case, you should double-check your To:, CC: and BCC: fields before clicking “Send”!

6) Forgetting the attachment – So simple, so obvious, yet oh so very common. You write up your message, enter the recipient details, click send, then think “Oops, that attachment I was talking about throughout the email, yeah it’s not attached to the email” – Not very professional and it can be embarassing to send a follow up message with the appropriate attachement! One way to conquer this problem is to attach the file before writing the message.

7) Sending the wrong attachment – This could lead to a very sticky situation, with cases such as admin sending out employee bank details to everybody in the office. Double-checking the file preview before sending can definitely save your behind.

8 ) Sending the email to the wrong person – I don’t think we need to explain this one… You can read about the horrors of this case all over the Internet. Please, please, check the recipients field!!!

9) Omitting a recipient when replying to all – Being left out of an important conversation and needing to chase it up yourself, sucks. So don’t be the one the cause that problem!

10) Using BCC too often – One again this topic pops up. Using BCC can be like talking behind someone’s back. Be careful when, and for what reasons, you use this mysterious field. For more info have a look here – To BCC: or Not to BCC: … That is the Question!

11) Failing to include a basic greeting – You don’t go around randomly starting conversations with people every day. A simple “Hi” is enough to break the ice and instill a bit of courtesy.

13) Not signing off – It’s amazing to see cases where people do not sign off with their name, let alone without their logo, company and contact details!! As the creators of Crossware Mail Signature, this kind of mistake would be almost inconceivable – If we had not seen it happen many times for ourselves!

14) Emailing when you’re angry – There’s no need to have a tantrum like a toddler. Have some time out and respond later, especially in business situations.

15) Forgetting about tone – They say that first person communication is 93% non-verbal. When an email is 100% text it can be easy to forget about the tone of your text, even more importantly is how the text will be perceived by the receiver. Read through the message before sending, just in case something could be taken the wrong way.

16) Using an incorrent subject line – You open emails because you want to read about the subject line topic, so make sure your topic and content match somehow!

17) Having bad manners – Manners include the traditional “Mind your P’s and Q’s”, yet today they include so much more. Take a look at our posts on Netiquette to learn about why you SHOULDN’T TYPE WITH CAPS LOCK ON?!?!?! I sound angry there don’t I? ;-)

Age-old sayings can apply to a lot of situations – “Think before you speak” … “Look before you leap” … and “Re-read your email before sending” all definitely apply here. Beware of those common email mistakes!

Source link:


JANE ADONG used to ride for 10 hours on a motorcycle to get to her nearest radio station. From there, she would broadcast her show – an advice segment dealing with HIV education. Her neighbours back in the Ugandan town of Patongo would tune in and listen.

This week, she got those hours back. Adong and the NGO she founded, Gwokke Keni, now have a station of their own in Patongo, one of four prototype radio transmitters being erected in rural Ugandan towns and villages. Made from a bucket, some circuitry and a smartphone, the system is opening up information access like never before.

Although the internet and social networks have revolutionised the rich world, millions of people in poor countries don't even have radio broadcasts in their own language. Traditional radio stations need a building with sound equipment that links to a powerful antenna. But as advances in electronics have driven computation into smaller and cheaper packages, it has become possible to run a whole radio station with little more than a phone.

The stations are the product of RootIO, a start-up founded by Ugandan telecom expert Jude Mukundane and Chris Csikszentmihályi, formerly of the MIT Media Lab. Each consists of a solar panel, battery, 15-metre-tall transmitter tower and a smartphone. A white 19-litre bucket houses the hardware and keeps it dry.

The smartphone is the linchpin. It runs an Android app that connects to radio hosts' personal phones, letting them control the broadcast through a phone call and their standard keypad. Smartphones at each station can talk to each other through the app to syndicate content, but most initial programming will serve specific local needs. In one show, listeners will call in with the vocal equivalent of classified listings – a valuable service in places like rural Uganda, where literacy rates are low.

Another will have an advice segment that focuses on veterinary and agricultural issues. Adong and Gwokke Keni will devote airtime to HIV destigmatisation and information on compliance with antiretroviral medication. Because cellphones are plentiful in Uganda but minutes of talk time are not, RootIO's system will register the caller's telephone number for all call-in shows and, instead of connecting, will hang up and dial the person back at no charge.

"[It] provides an interconnection between radio and phone, two of the most pervasive technologies used by poor and marginalised people," says UNICEF's Sharad Sapra. The result is radio that functions more like a telephone, designed for a two-sided conversation.

Silicon Valley technology is often touted as a way to better the lives of people in poor countries. But with her new station, and more like it coming soon, Adong and other Ugandans are taking the power of information into their own hands.

This article appeared in print under the headline "Radio in a bucket"


Higher Education / Boy graduates with 3 degrees
« on: May 24, 2015, 12:33:28 PM »
A California boy, 11, just graduated from college with three degrees. Tanishq Abraham says his dreams are to become a doctor, a Nobel Prize-winning medical researcher, and President of the United States.

Tanishq graduated from American River College in Sacramento, California with three degrees in math, science and foreign languages.

He graduated alongside 1,800 students, presumably making him the youngest student to graduate from the American university.

“I like to learn,” he told KXTV following the graduation ceremony. “So I just followed my passion of learning, and that's how I ended up here.”

Tanishq also told that it “[It] feels good to graduate with three Associate's degrees." However, he also added that the accomplishment wasn't "much of a big thing" for him.

Last year, the youngster also made headlines when he graduated high school at the age of 10 years old.

Tanishq was home-schooled by his mother Taji, a veterinarian who reportedly took a break from her own PhD studies to teach him.

“We did it as a family, as teamwork,” said Taji Abraham. “And I was just cheering, I was just crying there when I saw Tanishq walk down the stage.”

Intellect apparently runs in the family. His father, Bijou Abraham, had a perfect math score on his SAT. He is a Cornell University graduate and software engineer. Tanishq's younger sister Tiara, 9, is also a prodigy; both children joined Mensa International at the age of four.

“Even in kindergarten,” Taji Abraham said, Tanishq “was a few years ahead. It just went from there.”

"The assumption is that he's the all-time youngest," Scott Crow, a spokesman for the American River College told NBC Bay Area. "But we don't have all the archives to completely confirm. He was definitely the youngest this year."

The youngster also plans to enroll in a Calculus II course this summer.

Collected from:

Alumni / Re: Alumni Testimonials
« on: May 17, 2015, 01:59:40 PM »
I'm privileged to be a member of DIU as student and official both. The values that, DIU has created for my behavior, education, culture and career are remarkable.

Turns out some of those odd phobias people have are arguably quite sane after all. Now you can tell your friends that your equinophobia (the fear of horses) might just be keeping you alive. Granted, in the grand scheme of things horses are not responsible for a lot of deaths, definitely not a many as the top 3 on our list. Three animals that might just surprise you quite a bit. With out further ado, here are the top 19 animals responsible for killing humans:

19. Leopards - While there are no official records on leopard attacks, confrontations in India are common. In one year at least, they claimed the lives of 15 people.

18. Horses - I hate to see horses on the list and they certainly do not intend to kill humans. But with the human tendency to ride them, particularly in rodeos, around 20 Americans are killed each year.

17. Cows - So how do cows kill humans? Pretty easily with a solid kick to the head. They are normal very calm creatures, but over 20 people per year are killed by them in the US.

16. Ants - There are many types of ants in the world and, combined, they kill over 30 people a year. Fire ants can be deadly to immobile people.

15. Bees - 53 people were killed by bees last year. This is mostly because they were deathly allergic.

14. African Lions - The latest numbers indicate around 70 people per year are killed by lions. It's not so much that they want to us but, hey.. king of the jungle. They'll do whatever they want.

13. Jellyfish - Guess what? Sharks are not what you should be afraid of in the water. It's jellyfish that sting and kill as much as 15x more people than sharks each year.

12. Tigers - The lion may be the king of the jungle, but the tiger is the king of killing humans. Of course, it's still a relatively low number. They are estimated to kill around 100 humans per year. I'm guessing in most cases, said humans provoked them.

11. Deer - No, deer are not stabbing people with their antlers (although they could). About 120 people per year die in automobile accidents caused by deer.

10. Domestic Dogs - 10. Domestic Dogs - Dogs are awesome, but let's face it: with a horrible owner, they are capable of attacking and killing. 186 people per year have discovered that reality.

9. Cape Buffalo - This 1.5 ton massive creature with sharp horns is capable of destruction. Not that they are out for blood, but when they feel they're in danger, they are may attack. About 200 people per year are killed by Cape Buffalo.

8. Being 13 feet tall and weighing 15,000 pounds, it's no surprise that the elephant is on the list. Around 500 people per year are killed, usually by means of trampling, by this magnificent beast.

7. Crocodiles - And here's one I would fully expect to make the list. I'm actually surprised crocs aren't #1. Between 1500 and 2500 people per year are violently killed by crocodiles, a death I wish upon no one.

6. Hippopotamus - To my surprise, it's the hippo that is considered the most dangerous animal in Africa. They seem very docile but when provoked, watch out. 3,000 people per year die from hippos.

5. Scorpions - With more than 1500 different species of scorpions, only about 25 have deadly poison. And those 25 do some serious damage, killing as many as 5000 people per year.

4. Snakes - Now I know why we all fear snakes so much. Because we should. They kill as many as 50,000 people worldwide each year. Often, it's simply from feeling the human presence as a threat and attacking. Sucks to be human.

3. Tsetse Flies - Now we're getting into some serious mass murdering animals (insects). The Tsetse fly is what spread the African sleeping sickness, which affects as many as 500,000 people, 80 percent of whom eventually die.

2. Mosquitoes - The annoying buzz in the ear is the least of our concerns with mosquitos. They're very deadly due to carrying diseases such as Malaria. As many as 1,000,000 people per year die from Malaria. So what could possibly kill more people than that?

1. Human - There's no one better at killing humans than humans. We prove that every day.


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