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Thursday, 31 March 2011

BBC News - Gorbachev's eclectic London birthday bash

Gorbachev's eclectic London birthday bash

Three global entrepreneurs have been awarded the inaugural Gorbachev awards for "people who have changed the world" at a star-studded event in London.

The inventor of the worldwide web, Sir Tim Berners Lee; the media mogul and founder of CNN television, Ted Turner; and a 25-year-old Kenyan engineer called Evans Wadongo were all honoured at a gala to celebrate the former Soviet leader's 80th birthday at the Royal Albert Hall.

The London Symphony Orchestra struck up a rousing classical medley under the baton of the famous Russian conductor, Valery Gergiev, filling the hall with music.

Framed by mock neoclassical columns and an arch overhead inscribed with the phrase "The Man who Changed the World", a giant screen showed highlights from Mikhail Gorbachev's career, interspersed with images of other global heroes and celebrities ranging from Nelson Mandela and Mother Teresa to Princess Diana and Margaret Thatcher. It was all a bit cheesy and over the top.

But then finally the screen filled with the live image of Mr Gorbachev as he is today, sitting in the front row with his daughter, more portly than in his heyday, with the telltale wine-red birthmark on his forehead but still with the same charming smile and lively manner than so struck Western politicians when he first emerged as Soviet leader.

Scorpions and Schwarzenegger

Slowly the former president clambered up on stage to make an opening speech. He pondered that he had lived through much in his eight decades, seen many things, experienced loss as well as joy and addressed many crowds, but he had rarely been at an event like this one.

Kevin Spacey and Sharon Stone Kevin Spacey and Sharon Stone were hosts for the event

Around the cavernous hall in all the red velvet-upholstered boxes, VIP couples, many in black tie and slinky ball gowns, set down their champagne glasses to rise to their feet and applaud him.

A sincere moment of real respect, whatever the gaudy trimmings.

So who had come to pay homage? The glitterati crowd included both glamorous Russians as well as Londoners, plus many other stars and political heavyweights.

The ex-Terminator and former governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, was there. So was the former British Foreign Secretary Lord David Owen. The one-time Solidarity leader and Polish President Lech Walesa was among the guests, as was Israeli President Shimon Peres.

And alongside the politicians, Mel C of the Spice Girls had been invited. Goldie Hawn arrived - tripping down the red carpet in characteristically ditzy fashion - and the punk-haired German rock band The Scorpions had come too to sing the song Wind of Change, which once summed up the mood as the communist bloc fell apart. The four of them posed for the cameras in a well-rehearsed group action shot, as though poised to leap on stage and grapple a microphone to the ground.

London, not Moscow

You cannot deny it: this was an incongruous mix of people and a weird, though memorable, event. The co-hosts on stage were both Hollywood megastars, Sharon Stone and Kevin Spacey. They had learnt their political show lines diligently. She was the straight guy. His job was to crack the jokes.

A view of the Royal Albert Hall's interior during the gala The event was billed as the Gorby 80 Gala

Sharon: "Where would Russia be if not reaping the benefits of its new democracy?"

Kevin: " Well, we wouldn't be in this room tonight and Chelsea football team wouldn't be able to afford its new players."

A polite titter rippled through the hall. Oscar night razor-sharp wit it was not.

But to give him his due, Kevin Spacey also had a serious point to make, which he delivered eloquently when he stopped to talk to us on the way in.

"If you look at our world now," he told us, "all of the things that are happening in Egypt, Belarus, Iran and Libya, people are fighting for the very kind of freedoms and access and ability to cross borders that Mikhail Gorbachev did so many years ago... I suspect that you could draw a direct line to Mikhail Gorbachev and say that's where a lot of this began."

A sentiment that probably quite a lot of different people in Britain would agree with.

In Moscow you might find it harder to come across Gorbachev fans who would make the same connection. Many Russians still blame him for the Soviet collapse. For them he is not a hero. No wonder his main birthday bash was being held in London.

Glasnost and Perestroika - India took both - Openness/ Transparency with its RTI Act and Perestroika - Reforms.

The Legend called - Sachin Tendulkar

‎"I want my son to become Sachin Tendulkar." -Brian Lara(WI)

''V did not lose 2 a team called India, v lost 2 a man called Sachin'' - Mark Taylor(aus)

'Nothing bad can happen 2 us if v were on a plane in India wit Sachin Tendulkar on it.''-Hashim Amla(SA)

''He can play that leg glance with a walking stick also.-Waqar Younis(Pak)

''There r 2 kind of batsman in the world. 1 Sachin Tendulkar and 2. all the others .-Andy Flower(ZIM)

"I have seen God. He bats at no.4 for India in tests.-Matthew Hayden(AUS.)

"I c myself when i c Sachin batting.-Don Bradman(AUS)

"Do your crime when Sachin is batting, bcos even God is busy watching his batting. -Australian Fan

Barack Obama - "I don't know about cricket but still I watch cricket to see Sachin play..Not b'coz I love his play
its b'coz I want to know the reason why my country's production goes down by 5 percent when he's in batting"...

today is Cesar Chavez Day

Did you know...

... that today is Cesar Chavez Day? On the birthday of Cesar
Estrada Chavez, organizer of the National Farm Workers
Association, we honor all farm workers, especially migratory
workers. Chavez was born on March 31, 1927, in Yuma, Arizona.


Today's Inspirational Quote:

"From the depth of need and despair, people can work together,
can organize themselves to solve their own problems and fill
their own needs with dignity and strength."

-- Cesar Chavez

India Census 2011 Highlights

Census 2011: India population 1210.2 million:  

The census report for 2011 is out. What has been released today is a provisional report.

For now, only the highlights are in. Details awaited.

  • India's population is pegged at 1,210.2 million (male 623.7 million and female--586.5 million).
  • India's population growth in 2011 is 17.64 per cent in comparison to 21.15 per cent in 2001.
  • The Census commissioner says it's the sharpest fall in population grwoth since Independence.
  • Total literacy is 38.82 per cent.
  • Female literacy is more than male literacy.
  • Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar and Gujarat show a decline in sex ratio.
  • 29 states show an increase in sex ratio.
  • Child sex ratio in 2011 is 914 females against 1,000 male -- the lowest since Independence
  • India's population is now bigger than the combined population of USA, Indonesia, Brazil, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
  • Uttar Pradesh is the most populous state and the combined population of UP and Maharashtra is bigger than USA.
  • Highest population density is in Delhi's north-eastdistrict (37,346 per sq km), while the lowest is in Dibang Valley in Arunachal Pradesh (just one per sq km).

Team India keep alive a billion dreams - Rediff Sports

India's Sachin Tendulkar (left) hugs captain and wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni after India beat Pakistan

India kept alive a billion dreams after sinking Pakistan in their World Cup semi-final on Wednesday to set up an all-Asian final against Sri Lanka.

Unlike their opponents from across the border, India did not look overwhelmed by the hype surrounding the showdown that forced a virtual lockdown in this tiny town.

- Images: India sends Pak packing in Mohali

The 1983 champions put 260-9 on board and then returned to bowl out their opponents for 231 with just one delivery left to complete a 29-run victory to spark euphoria in and around the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium.

The victory not only pits them against Sri Lanka in Saturday's final between the co-hosts in Mumbai but also spared them some unnecessary plane-hopping.

"One good thing (about is this win) that the next flight would be a chartered flight. We will go to Delhi first and from there to Mumbai (without changing planes)," India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, fed up of jumping on and off connecting flights over the past six weeks, said.

Image: India's Sachin Tendulkar (left) hugs captain and wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni after India beat Pakistan

Never get angry - Gita Gyan

क्रोधात भवती संमोहः

सम्मोहात स्मृती विभ्रमः

स्मृती भ्रन्शात बुद्धिनाशो

बुद्धी नाशात प्रणश्यति

High Tech Gadgetry for Cricket - DRS to Tendulkar's rescue

Tendulkar, when on 23 in the 11th over of the Indian innings, was declared out leg before to Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal [ Images ] by umpire Ian Gould.

- Scorecard | Images

He asked for the Decision Review (DRS) got a reprieve as the available technology showed the ball would have missed the leg stump after striking his pad.

He was eventually out for 85 after living a charmed life.

Umpire Ian Gould (L) signals a decision reversal after giving Tendulkar out LBW off the bowling of Saeed AjmalTendulkar has consistently given the thumbs down to the DRS, saying he is not fully convinced about the controversial referral system, after getting the wrong end of the stick during India's [ Images ] tour to Sri Lanka [ Images ] in 2008.

On India's next visit to the Emerald island, last year, Tendulkar had said that instead of the DRS, he favours usage of new 'Hot-Spot' technology, which is an infra-red imaging system used in cricket to determine whether the ball has struck the batsman, bat or pad.

"I am not fully convinced with the referral system (DRS). When I was here last time I was not convinced with many decisions. I did not feel comfortable, it was an experiment which I felt...," Tendulkar had said after notching his fifth double hundred in Tests in Colombo.

"I would rather go with the Hot Spot because that establishes the contact between the bat and the bowl. That it is far better system according to me. The Hot Spot is much better," he had added.

However, the 'Hot Spot' technology is not in use in the World Cup.

Sehwag, on the other hand, had expressed total support to the DRS in Mumbai [ Images ] on November 1, 2010.

"I am a big fan of the UDRS. I want it to be there for the India-New Zealand series, India-South Africa series and in the World Cup," he had remarked.

The DRS failed to come to his rescue after he was declared leg before to Pakistan's left arm swing bowler Wahab Riaz by umpire Simon Taufel. A review was called for by the swashbuckling opener only for the DRS to confirm he was out.

India's captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni [ Images ], who too wasn't in favour of the system, called for it when given out LBW off Riaz and failed to benefit.

Prior to the opening match of the three-Test series against New Zealand [ Images ] at Ahmedabad [ Images ], Dhoni had declared he would not support a 'life jacket if it was not accompanied by a warranty'.

"I personally feel it's not cent per cent thing. I don't think it gives cent percent result. It's not always correct. If I am going to buy a life jacket which does not come with a warranty, that's a bit of a hassle for me especially with the huge amount of money you have to spend for the DRS system coming into the game," Dhoni had said on November 3.

"I would prefer some kind of warranty behind it. (The) moment it comes, I would be happy for it," he had remarked then.

It is to be seen whether the Indian stalwarts will have a change of heart after what happened at Mohali.

New business segment. Open to innovation.

India v Pakistan: The crucial first 15 overs, and mysterious Misbah-ul-Haq | Cricket Features | ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 | ESPN Cricinfo

The crucial first 15 overs, and mysterious Misbah

The margin of the result was exactly the number of more runs India scored in the first 15 overs compared to Pakistan

S Rajesh

March 30, 2011

Comments: 29 | Be the first to comment | Post yours as | '); } if(!fb_cookies_comments && !ci_cookie){ document.write('Login via | '); } Post yours as Jay Parkhe | Text size: A | A

As it turned out, almost all the experts read the wicket wrong. MS Dhoni and Sachin Tendulkar admitted as much in the post-match presentation, and from the scores it's obvious that run-making was a lot more difficult on this Mohali pitch than it was expected to be. The team composition and the early overs suggested a score of around 300 would be a par total, but later events showed it was another subcontinent track on which run-scoring against the hard new ball was much easier.

In that context, the difference between the two teams was the runs they scored in the first 15 overs, when the ball was new. Pakistan's top three played useful cameos too, but none of them exploded in the manner that Virender Sehwag had. Sehwag's 25-ball 38 allowed India to rack up 99 in the first 15 overs, compared to Pakistan's 70. The difference of 29 was exactly the margin by which Pakistan lost the match, which means in the remaining 35 overs, the two teams scored exactly the same number of runs. Of course, the approaches of the two teams at the start were obviously different since Pakistan knew the target in front of them, but Pakistan struggled as much as India did in the middle overs. What made their case worse was the fact that they got no reciprocal help from the Indian fielders, or from the dew which was expected to set in later in the evening.

How the Indian and Pakistan innings shaped up
Team - overs Score Dots 1s/ 2s 4s/ 6s
India - 1 to 15 99 for 1 52 18/ 2 16/ 0
Pakistan - 1 to 15 70 for 1 57 19/ 2 11/ 0
India - 16 to 40 101 for 4 85 50/ 6 8/ 0
Pakistan - 16 to 40 107 for 5 79 53/ 12 4/ 2
India - 41 to 50 60 for 4 29 21/ 4 6/ 0
Pakistan - 41 to 50 54 for 4 33 20/ 1 5/ 1

Misbah's mystery innings
Misbah-ul-Haq's strike rate at the end of his innings was 73.68; Tendulkar's rate for his 85 was 73.91. That, perhaps, is as good an example as any to illustrate the fact that stats without context is meaningless. Misbah's inexplicable go-slow through the first half of his innings resulted in the asking rate climbing to unmanageable proportions, and it also forced the other batsmen to take risks that might otherwise have been unnecessary. He tried to make up for it later, but apart from helping him reach a personal landmark and improving his strike-rate, his late hits counted for little.

Overall, Misbah played out 42 dot balls, which was the most among Pakistan's batsmen. In his first 42 balls, he scored only 17 and played 27 dots. During this period, Pakistan's asking rate went up from 6.07 to 8.45. Younis Khan's sluggish innings didn't help either - add his 13 from 32 balls to Misbah's 17 in his first 42, and Pakistan have every reason to feel their two most experienced batsmen didn't serve them well: in those 74 balls, the two batsmen got a grand total of 30 runs, with no boundaries. Even with the power-hitters to follow, that was a bridge too far.

Misbah's mis-paced innings
  Runs Dots 1s/ 2s 4s/ 6s
First 42 balls 17 27 13/ 2 0/ 0
Last 34 balls 39 15 13/ 0 5/ 1
Full innings (76 balls) 56 42 26/ 0 5/ 1

A spell to remember
The batsmen's poor effort ensured that a wonderful bowling performance by Wahab Riaz went in vain. He became only the second bowler, after Venkatesh Prasad, to take a five-for in an India-Pakistan World Cup match. He joins eight other Pakistan bowlers to have taken a five-for in an ODI against India.

More stats

  • This is India's first World Cup semi-final win at home in three attempts. They'd lost to England in 1987, and to Sri Lanka in 1996. However, they've won both their World Cup semi-final matches away from home (in 1983 and 2003).

  • Tendulkar has won nine Man-of-the-Match awards in World Cups, which is easily the highest. Three of those have been against Pakistan: he'd also won the prize against them in 1992 and in 2003.

  • Sehwag and Dhoni joined five other Indian batsmen to score 1000 ODI runs against Pakistan. Tendulkar leads with 2474 runs at an average of 39.90.

  • It was only the second time in his ODI career that Yuvraj Singh was dismissed for a golden duck - the first instance was against Kenya nearly ten years ago.

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: S Rajesh


Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Anil Kumble: India have the skill to upstage Pak - Sports

The lead-up to the second semi-final has been understandably massive. India vs Pakistan has always been one of the marquee clashes in the cricket world, and when the stage is as significant as the World Cup, one can well imagine how high the expectations are.

- World Cup coverage

Everyone in India wants the team to beat Pakistan, just as everyone in Pakistan wants their team to succeed. It's one match where the result matters, not really how you play.

I can say from experience that you must be strong enough to strike the balance between taking it as just another match, and understanding that it is not just another match. Yes, you have to treat playing Pakistan just like you would any other side, but in other matches, you often stress on the processes knowing that the result will take care of itself. Against Pakistan, the result is more important than the process, and that is the simple truth.

Captains Dhoni and AfridiIn such matches, it is the desperation and hunger to succeed that becomes most important. Both teams will be desperate and hungry. It's the team that wants it more which will come out on top. You need to keep your emotions in check, especially if you are playing at home like India are, because whoever you see has only one thing to say -- kal jeetna hai!

- Dhoni plays down hype before semi-final

After a while, that starts playing on your mind. I suppose this team, which has been in similar situations, is more used to it than teams of the past. I remember that when we battled Pakistan, they were invariably the far superior side in terms of strength. In 2003, for instance, they had Wasim and Waqar, Saeed Anwar and a young Afridi known more for his batting than his bowling. In 1996, they also had Javed and Salim Malik, they had a lot of experience and plenty of strength and while we were also a very good team, we needed to raise our game to defeat them.

This current side is a different package; it doesn't have the same names of the past or the same experience. India have the skill to defeat them, and in order to be victorious, unlike in the past when Indian sides had to raise their game, this team only needs to play its game. Saying that, it will be very important not to get carried away by the occasion, and to control the emotions.

There is a vast difference between playing Pakistan at home and away. I clearly recall, going into the quarter-finals at the Chinnaswamy stadium in 1996, that the pressure eased a bit when I stepped into a stadium where I had practically grown up as a cricketer. Of course, who knows what would have happened had the result gone the other way.

The build-up has been enormous, and very much in your face. In the past, it was more subtle and hands-on, a touch-and-feel kind of thing. Now, this showdown dominates the front pages of newspapers, and when you switch on the television, all you see and hear about is India, Pakistan and Mohali. Since it is so in your face, maybe you as a player tend to rubbish it a little bit.

I am sure all the players are a little nervous, and waiting for the action to start. The last week has been all talk, now it's time for the real deal. It's a mammoth game in terms of importance. From an Indian perspective, it's all about how you can bring in the skills and be consistent. If you get on top, you must stay on top. If you are slightly behind the eight-ball, you must wait for that shift in momentum, and then grab the moment.

One must not lose sight of the fact that at the end of the day, it is still only a game of cricket and both teams want to win. It's certainly a game where the pressure will be huge. As a player, one has to stay positive, and embrace the pressure rather than give in to it.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Yuvi - Real or Morph !?


Secretive China top 'executioner' in the world: Amnesty - News

A policeman and paramilitary man stand guard in front of a giant portrait of the late Chairman Mao Zedong at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China

China and the United States still remain among the top countries executing prisoners, resisting the global trend of abolishing the death penalty, an Amnesty International report has revealed.

The Guardian newspaper quoted the report as saying that China had apparently executed more than any other country, but the organisation has failed to provide a precise figure of executions in China as Beijing keeps such figures secret.

China used the death penalty in 2010 against thousands of people for a wide range of crimes that included non-violent offences and after proceedings that did not meet international fair trial standards, AI noted.

Amnesty International has instead challenged the Chinese authorities to publish figures of the number of people sentenced to death and executed each year to confirm the regime's claim that it has reduced the applicability of the death penalty.

today is the birthday of John Tyle

Did you know...

... that today is the birthday of John Tyler? John Tyler, the
tenth President of the United States, was born on March 29,
1790, in Greenway, Virginia. Trivia buffs: Tyler was called
The Accidental President because he was the first to succeed
to the office following the death of a predecessor and... he
had 15 children!


Today's Inspirational Quote:

"The people who get on in this world are the people who get up
and look for the circumstances they want, and, if they can't
find them, make them."

-- George Bernard Shaw

'Ratner moment' almost killed World Cup cricket, says ICC chief | Sport |

'Ratner moment' almost killed World Cup cricket, says ICC chief

• One-day game nearly went same way as Ratner's shops
• Lorgat: 'World Cup proves 50-over game is alive and well'

India England The World Cup match between India and England in Bengaluru attracted the biggest TV audience in ODI history, says Haroon Lorgat. Photograph: Prakash Singh/AFP

The ICC's chief executive, Haroon Lorgat, said on the eve of the World Cup semi-finals that cricket had narrowly averted killing the 50-over game by repeating the mistake made famous by Gerald Ratner and presenting its product as rubbish.

Instead, as Sri Lanka prepared to face New Zealand at the Premadasa Stadium in the first, and the less celebrated, of the two semi-finals, Lorgat said the World Cup had proved that 50-over cricket was "alive and well."

Ratner made one of the most celebrated corporate misjudgments in history when he joked to the Institute of Directors almost 20 years ago that many of the products in his jewellery shops were "total crap" and that his earrings were "cheaper than an M&S prawn sandwich but probably wouldn't last as long". He almost bankrupted his own company in days.

Lorgat, in a speech to the Sri Lankan press club, quoted a column by The Guardian's cricket correspondent, Mike Selvey, after Sachin Tendulkar had scored the first double hundred in one-day cricket for India against South Africa in Gwalior last year. It was, said Lorgat, a significant moment, proof to him that the 50-over game needed "no more gimmicks or tinkering".

Selvey wrote of Tendulkar's innings: "It is those lingering memories that sustain the argument for 50-over cricket, while T20, brilliant as it can be, is essentially transient: sweet and tasty but gone in a flash, like candyfloss. In 50 overs, there is time for the essential narrative of cricket to unfold."

Lorgat said: "Key administrators around the world were either wanting to or actually tinkering with the format of 50-over cricket. Some were reducing to 40 overs; others wanted to trial split innings while some had even more extreme thoughts.

"As a game we were self-inflicting a crisis on 50-over cricket. It reminded me of a British jeweler who [once] pronounced that his merchandise was rubbish. He simply talked himself out of business.

"A year ago we were in danger of doing the same to our much-loved 50-over cricket. The more we talked of a game in crisis the more we created the crisis and the more we fuelled talk of doom and despondency. A vicious circle. And all the time there was no real evidence of a crisis."

Lorgat suggested that television had attracted record audiences in this World Cup and the India v England match in Bengaluru had been the most-watched game in the history of ODIs. "It doesn't take a genius to predict that when India face Pakistan in Mohali that record may well be smashed."

Only in England, said Lorgat, did research show that 50-over cricket was less popular than Test and Twenty20 cricket – and even there it had a fan base of 16 million. "Not only is 50-over cricket far from death row, it has a strong and vibrant future," he said, adding that the introduction of an ODI League, to run between triennial World Cups, would soon reduce the number of meaningless one-day internationals.

Sri Lanka and New Zealand have quite a billing to live up to, with Sri Lanka regarded as favourites to advance to the final after their 10-wicket demolition of England in Saturday's quarter-final. They plan to use the same pitch; excruciatingly slow the first time, it is not about to quicken up.

New Zealand have reached the World Cup semi-final on five previous occasions and have lost the lot. In the months before the World Cup, they were soundly beaten in all three World Cup countries. Mark Greatbatch stood down as coach and the old campaigner John Wright returned. No one even spoke of them as dark horses this time around but when least expected they are the only non-Asian team in the last four.

Monday, 28 March 2011

Tiger Census shows rise in population - OR the Census Efficiency improved??

Computers were used to analyse and collate the data.

The 2006 Census had shown a sharp fall in the number of tigers in ‘protected areas’ - reserves, national parks and wildlife sanctuaries - in 19 states across the country.

According to it, India had only 1,411 wild cats left in its forests.

Has the Tiger population really grown or the Census Efficiency improved?

New Delhi, March 28 (IANS) What is common between tiger and Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh? Minister and senior Congress leader Salman Khursheed Monday lightheartedly said both are ferocious and near extinction.

Speaking at the release of Tiger Estimate 2010 in the capital, Water Resources and Corporate Affairs Minister Khursheed called Ramesh the "tiger minister".

"Both of them have similarities. He has features of a tiger ... if you don't treat them well, they become man-eaters and on the other side, they are near extinction," Khursheed said as Ramesh smiled.

Khursheed said like for the tiger "we (Congress party) use camera trapping and pug mark analysis to keep track of Ramesh".

Ramesh said he had called Khursheed for the release of the Tiger Census as he is the water resources minister and several upcoming irrigation projects are posing a threat to the environment.

"We are embarking on an irrigation project in Jharkhand which will destroy the Valmiki Tiger Reserve in Bihar. We are looking at the interlinking of Ken-Betwa rivers and it will completely submerge the Panna Tiger Reserve in Madhya Pradesh," Ramesh said.

"Similarly, large irrigation projects are coming up in Himachal Pradesh and these will affect the environment. These are some of the development threats we face."

The census recorded an increase in tiger figures to 1,706 in 2010, compared to 1,411 in 2006.


10 steps to drive the 'Decade of Innovation' - Business

R A Mashelkar (R), Anil Gupta (c) with techpedia members.
Prev     Next
The first challenge is to map four aspects of technology in use at MSME clusters and in the neighbouring rural and urban communities.

The first aspect is benchmarking the current level of energy, material and technology youths in the enterprise.

Second, is to identify any innovation that the MSME unit may have tried.

Third is to identify the unsolved problems. And the fourth is to identify the policy bottlenecks which are coming in the way in realizing fully the entrepreneurial potential.

GTU has provided three credits for identifying the problem at the end of the third year and four credits for solving it in the fourth year by every student.

Revital effect


Umar Gul get ready !

Up in the Air (2009/I) - Synopsis

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Nice movie.

Live! Pak public holiday on WC semis! - India News

13:51 PM  Pak public holiday on WC semis!:  

Quickly, then, tell your boss about thi

iPad prices: Pad tie | The Economist

The price of Apple's tablet computer, before sales tax, varies significantly between countries

IF YOU fly from Hong Kong to Frankfurt or Paris and look suspiciously like a gadget lover, chances are that you will be searched by customs officers: an iPad with Wi-Fi and 16 gigabytes of memory costs $200 less in the former British colony than in Germany and France. Given the risk of having to pay extra duty (and the price of the flight), potential iPad buyers in both countries ought to consider a trip to nearby Luxembourg, where Apple's popular device is $35 cheaper. The sales tax is only one reason for such differences in price. Consumers in Hong Kong also get a better deal because iPads are assembled in mainland China. Buyers in Switzerland have to pay more because there is less competition between retailers. In China and Mexico, the device may be cheaper because people are poorer. Incidentally, if income is taken into account, consumers in Luxembourg get the best deal: they only have to spend about 0.8% of the city-state's GDP per person on an iPad.

More Daily charts

Czechoslovakian Teachers Day

Did you know...

... that today is Czechoslovakian Teachers Day? This day
celebrates the birthday of Jan Amos Komensky (1592), a
Moravian educational reformer. He favored the learning of
Latin to facilitate the study of European culture but
emphasized learning about things rather than about grammar per
se. A man after my own heart! ;-)


Today's Inspirational Quote:

"The dream begins with a teacher who believes in you, who tugs
and pushes and leads you to the next plateau, sometimes poking
you with a sharp stick called 'truth.'"

-- Dan Rather

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Today is The Day the Words Went Away

Did you know...

... that today is The Day the Words Went Away? On this date,
Louis Armstrong originated scat singing when he forgot the
words to a song he was recording. This event was named The Day
the Words Went Away by Paul Harvey. It is also known as the
birthday of scat singing.


Today's Inspirational Quote:

"There is no such thing as 'on the way out' as long as you are
still doing something interesting and good; you're in the
business because you're breathing."

-- Louis Armstrong

today is Make Up Your Own Holiday Day

Did you know...

... that today is Make Up Your Own Holiday Day? Let your
imagination run wild and create your own holiday! Be
inventive; celebrate your favorite food, your favorite person,
your favorite hobby, your favorite anything. Enjoy your day!


Today's Inspirational Quote:

"Human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds,
can change the outer aspects of their lives."

-- William James

I always help people with their problems...

Snow can turn a dull landscape...

Stop the world...

Saturday, 26 March 2011

today is Make Up Your Own Holiday Day

Did you know...

... that today is Make Up Your Own Holiday Day? Let your
imagination run wild and create your own holiday! Be
inventive; celebrate your favorite food, your favorite person,
your favorite hobby, your favorite anything. Enjoy your day!


Today's Inspirational Quote:

"Human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds,
can change the outer aspects of their lives."

-- William James

India Cables special — the entire series in PDF here! (Day 11) March 25, 2011 « INTERESTING READS

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SecretZen | Blog | I haven't slept in so long...

Sachin - what a Morph !

Friday, 25 March 2011

Thank you Reid Hoffman - It is a great feeling !


Dear J a y,

I want to personally thank you because you were one of LinkedIn's first million members (member number 671295 in fact!*). In any technology adoption lifecycle, there are the early adopters, those who help lead the way. That was you.

We hit a big milestone at LinkedIn this week when our 100 millionth member joined the site.



When we founded LinkedIn, our vision was to help the world's professionals be more successful and productive. Today, with your help, LinkedIn is changing the lives of millions of members by helping them connect with others, find jobs, get insights, start a business, and much more.  

We are grateful for your support and look forward to helping you accomplish much more in the years to come. I hope that you are having a great year.


Reid Hoffman Signature
Reid Hoffman Reid Hoffman
Co-founder and Chairman

*Your member number is the number embedded in your LinkedIn profile URL (after "id=").

Thank you Reid Hoffman - It is a great feeling !


Dear J a y,

I want to personally thank you because you were one of LinkedIn's first million members (member number 671295 in fact!*). In any technology adoption lifecycle, there are the early adopters, those who help lead the way. That was you.

We hit a big milestone at LinkedIn this week when our 100 millionth member joined the site.



When we founded LinkedIn, our vision was to help the world's professionals be more successful and productive. Today, with your help, LinkedIn is changing the lives of millions of members by helping them connect with others, find jobs, get insights, start a business, and much more.  

We are grateful for your support and look forward to helping you accomplish much more in the years to come. I hope that you are having a great year.


Reid Hoffman Signature
Reid Hoffman Reid Hoffman
Co-founder and Chairman

*Your member number is the number embedded in your LinkedIn profile URL (after "id=").

The Public Interest Disclosure and Protection to Persons Making the Disclosures Bill, 2010

est Disclosure and Protection to Persons Making the Disclosures Bill, 2010

We give the facts. You decide.

The Public Interest Disclosure and Protection to Persons Making the Disclosures Bill, 2010

Why is it important
Corruption scandals in the public sphere have been brought to light by whistleblowers.  One of the most high profile cases of whistleblowing was by Satyendra Dubey.  His death highlighted the lack of a mechanism to protect public officials who disclose information related to any illegal activity in the government.      

What is the current situation?
  • In 2004, the government issued certain guidelines for whistleblowing and protecting whistleblowers.
  • Whistleblowers can send complaints against corruption to the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC).
  • The identity of the complainant is kept secret and anonymous complaints are not entertained.   
  • The CVC can direct a public authority to provide protection against victimization of a whistleblower.
  • The CVC will investigate complaints and recommend action to be taken by the government.
What will change
  • A law would give statutory backing to the 2004 government resolution. 
  • Both Central and State Vigilance Commissions can receive complaints.
  • The Vigilance Commission shall not entertain a complaint if it is made five years after the action. 
  • Penalties are prescribed for various offences.   

BJP puts reform first, supports pension fund bill - The Economic Times

NEW DELHI: The BJP has sent out a firm signal that partisan political wrangling will not be allowed to come in the way of the reform agenda that enjoy larger acceptance when it backed the introduction of a bill to regulate pension funds - the Pension Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) bill.

The support came at a time when the Left parties pressed for a vote over its introduction stage in the Lok Sabha.

The development is certain to be comforting to the government as there is fear among investors that the Manmohan Singh Government, which is finding it difficult to muscle past red-siren headlines over corruption scandals, will not be able to stick to its policy playbook.

If today's development is any indication, a bit of outreach and back channel communications could help it push an agenda that have the backing of the majority in Parliament. The pension bill was framed during the NDA regime, but the UPA-I could not push it in the face of stiff resistance from its then supporters, the Left parties.

BJP's support for the government in the House suggest that there is scope for indentifying "doable" issues and moved ahead with it. On its part, BJP has been maintaining that the partisan stalemate on the policy front is Congress' fault.

In the Lok Sabha , BJP's support came as a relief for the Government as the defeat of the bill at the introduction stage would have been a major embarrassment. After the Left pressed for vote, their view was rejected by a 115 against 43 tally. Besides Left parties, JD(U), an ally of BJP, SP, BSP and TDP voted against the bill. Only 159 members were present in the 543-member House when the motion was put to vote.

The Government had tried to take the help of the rule book to avoid a vote on the bill at the introductory stage when CPM's Basudeb Acharia insisted on a division. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pawan Bansal said the member has to give a reason before seeking a vote on a bill at the introduction stage. Congress' Manish Tewari said a notice should be first addressed to the Secretary General in the morning hours on the day on which the motion for leave to introduce the Bill is on the list of business.

The attendance in the treasury benches was thin. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and finance minister Pranab Mukherjee were not present in the House. However, Acharia argued that a vote can be sought at that stage and Speaker Meira Kumar ordered division on introduction of the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority Bill, 2011. "We are opposing introduction of the Bill. I am asking for division instead of a voice vote," Acharia said.

The Speaker, who directed that the lobbies be cleared, gave a ruling in favour of the division. Acharia was seen talking to senior BJP leader LK Advani telling about the Left's opposition to the bill, which seeks to give statutory power to the country's pension regulator.

Ponting's prediction: After Shane Warne now we have another 'Paul the Octopus"

Ricky Ponting during the post match conference

Australian captain Ricky Ponting on Thursday predicted that India would beat Pakistan in the World Cup semi-final and Mahendra Singh Dhoni's men are the strong favourites to win the coveted title after a gap of 28 years.

"India played well as a team today and deserved victory. Today we were not good enough (to win). Going forward they will be pretty hard to beat. They will beat Pakistan in the semi-final and go on to win the World Cup now," Ponting said in Ahmedabad.

- Scorecard

"India have a very good batting line up. We played very competitive cricket tonight but I'm disappointed with the two successive losses (against Pakistan in their last league game and today against India)," he said after his side's five-wicket loss in a high-octane World Cup quarter-final.

He said he would not be playing in the next World Cup but ruled out quitting one-day cricket.

"I am not quitting one-day cricket but this is probably my last World Cup game. I will be happy to look back after retirement that I made a century in my last innings in the World Cup," Ponting said.

Image: Ricky Ponting during the post match conference
Photographs: Getty Images

However, the prediction is welcome as long as it is INDIA winning the World Cup.

Print Release

Japan thanks India
The Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan has thanked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for his kind words of condolence and India's offer of 25,000 blankets in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami. Prime Minister Kan in a letter to Dr. Manmohan Singh said he strongly sensed the solidarity in Dr. Manmohan Singh's speech in Parliament, in which he said India would spare no effort in assisting Japan, while announcing the offer of blankets.

The text of Prime Minister's letter is as follows:

"I wish to express my heartfelt gratitude for your kind words of condolences on the Tohoku district – off the Pacific Ocean earthquake, as well as your offer to provide 25,000 blankets in view of the cold weather in the Tohoku region. I strongly felt your sense of solidarity in your speech at both houses of Parliament, in which you stated that India would spare no effort in assisting Japan, while announcing the offer of blankets. I am certain that the whole hearted sympathy from India will be conveyed properly to those suffering from the present difficulties.

The Government of Japan will make its utmost efforts, together with the people of the affected areas and the people of the entire nation to overcome this difficult time."

Amar Singh's Official Blog |

“हम में ही थी न कोई बात याद जो तुमको आ सके,
तुमने हमें भुला दिया हम न तुम्हे भुला सके.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Today is Don Lockwood's Lucky Day?

Did you know... ... that today is Don Lockwood's Lucky Day? In the 1952 MGM movie "Singing in the Rain," Gene Kelly (as Don Lockwood) declares it's his lucky day when he, Donald O'Connor (as Cosmo Brown), and Debbie Reynolds (as Kathy Selden) decide to remake "The Dueling Cavalier" as a musical. Let today be your lucky day!

CWG mess: Panel nails L-G, CM - The Times of India

Living and entertainment
Timescity | iDiva | Bollywood | Zoom


itimes | Dating & Chat | Email

Jokes time till Cricket match starts at Ahmedabad today..

Last night Harry & his wife Sally were sitting in the living room, talking about life.
In-between, they talked about the idea of living or dying.

Said Harry to Sally:
'Darling, never let me live in a vegetative state, totally dependent on machines & liquids from a bottle. If u ever see me in that state I want u to do me a favour: disconnect all those contraptions that are keeping me alive, I'd much rather die!'

Sally cast a glance of admiration towards Harry as she got up from the sofa.
& she proceeded to disconnect the TV, Cable, Dish, Blu-ray, Laptop, Cell Phone, iPod, Xbox,
& then she threw away all the beer in the fridge, and his whisky, rum, gin, & vodka from the bar.


The 2 morals of this story are:

1. Think about what u wish for.
2. The female brain works on a different wavelength from the male.

HR dept announces award for anyone found working after India-Aus match begins | Faking News

Bangalore. In an effort to motivate employees to work even after the world cup quarter final match between India and Australia begins later today at Motera, the Human Resource department of a software services company here has announced a “special award” for any employee found working in the second half of the day.

“We would suitably award the person for choosing the company’s interests over personal pleasures,” Hariharan, the HR manager of Supro Software Services informed. A notice informing the same was put at various places in the office to win over the employees.

“I saw the notice when I went to the washroom,” Krish, a senior developer at the company confirmed. Krish (name changed) later told Faking News that he used his pen to add a line to the bottom of the notice: “Guys, please note, Sehwag is fit and playing today.”

Office cubicles

File photo showing an office during a cricket match

“I am not much into cricket anyways,” Mohan Kumar, a product tester and winner of the last “best employee of the month” said, “But they should have made clear what exactly would be awarded. And I also don’t know why they had written a ‘LOL’ towards the end in the notice near the water dispenser.”

Earlier Supro Software had offered to declare a holiday today if the employees agreed to come for work on the next Sunday, but the proposal was rejected unanimously.

According to HR experts, employee productivity is reduced by 60-80% (a conservative estimate) whenever a cricket match takes place and this challenge remains unresolved for the industry practitioners, who have been struggling to find ways to align their corporate strategy to cricket calendars.

During the 2003 world cup, Supro Software had taken a “proactive approach” and had installed a projector screen in the office to beam the final match between India and Australia, even though it was a Sunday. Unfortunately India lost the match by 125 runs, and the employees were reported to have blamed the “sinister” HR department for bringing bad luck to the team.

“2007 world cup was very good,” Hariharan recalled, “We didn’t have to do much. Let’s see how this one turns out to be; we hope to find a perfect solution by the next world cup.”

Tum Daal Daal - Hum Paat Paat - A day when Congress appeared heavier than BJP

A day when Congress appeared heavier than BJP

In the Lok Sabha Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal [ Images ] put Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj [ Images ] and senior BJP leader L K Advani [ Images ] on the mat by 'exposing their hypocrisy and double speak' while in the Rajya Sabha it was Home Minister P Chidambaram [ Images ] who took on Arun Jaitley [ Images ], rebutting him word for word.

But the day belonged to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh [ Images ] who, tongue-in-cheek, took on both L K Advani and Sushma Swaraj and in the process brought the House down as the elated treasury benches cheered him on.

Responding to Sushma's criticism of him that he had no right to be prime minister if he did not know what was happening in his government, the prime minister said he could not compete with Sushma when it came to a turn of phrase or beat her at oratory.

But he said he could recite a couplet as she had done, "Mana ki tere deed ke kabil nahin hain hum, tu mera shaukh to dekh, tu mera intizar to kar". (I admit that I am not worth your attention but appreciate my interest and my patience).

The couplet hit home as Sushma blushed while the Congress members roared with laughter and appreciation and clapped and cheered. The mood was obviously upbeat after Kapil Sibal had set the stage by openly and roundly attacking the BJP and its senior leadership on the WikiLeaks.

The prime minister then turned to L K Advani and said that in 2004 the BJP expected to be back in power and Advani thought he would be the prime minister. But instead the Congress was elected to power.

"Advani saw me as the usurper who had taken over the prime minister. He thought it was his birthright to be the prime minister and he has never forgiven me for this. I would ask him to wait for the next three and a half years".

Again the Congress benches clapped and thumped their desks in glee. After having been at the receiving end for months against a BJP onslaught, the treasury benches were happy that the senior BJP leadership was being targeted.

For the prime minister the targeting of Advani appears to be a matter of faith. Certainly the best comes out when he retaliates against Advani and this is what happened again today.

In his reply, the prime minister repeated his earlier pronouncement that he had no knowledge of votes being purchased and no one from the Congress or the government was involved in the distribution of money.

The government made it clear that the BJP was involved in the sting operation and was trying to destabilise the government, then. Kapil Sibal quoted from a report appearing in which makes it clear that the BJP was involved in the entire operation.

The Congress party later said that the Tehelka report should also be taken into account when the issue is investigated further.

As the two Houses discussed the WikiLeaks story, it became clear that the Congress MPs had decided to block and heckle the shouting BJP members at every turn refusing to let them get away. 

So much so that even Congress president Sonia Gandhi [ Images ] got into the act when senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha [ Images ] was speaking. Referring to the prime minister's speech made earlier that the cash-for-vote scam was a closed chapter since the Congress had won the general election, Sinha said a member of the House was in jail even though he had won an election (he was referring to former Jharkhand CM Madhu Koda [ Images ]) but he was interrupted by Sonia Gandhi who shouted and wanted to know about Sinha's party in Jharkhand and what they were doing.


As she shouted , BJP MPs clapped and shouted, "Bole, Bole, Madam Bole", referring to the normally quiet and silent Sonia Gandhi who was agitated enough to speak out. Congress benches also cheered when she spoke.

For the Congress and the government, the debate was certainly a morale booster as the party showed spirit and fought back, having been at the receiving end on a number of scams and issues of corruption.

With the budget session coming to an end in another two days and the action shifting to the electoral battlefield where the BJP is not a player in these elections, the Congress hopes to come back with a bigger smile after pocketing a number of states, having weathered a great deal of heckling and protesting from the BJP benches.

Enjoyable Shayari day in Parliament yesterday. What was remarkable was the cool and calm composure of the PM and his overall bearing. He is a wonderful statesman and against the onslaught - retaining humour and the attitude make him what he is !
I would rather listen to a calm voice than a Hullad Brigade shouting hoarsely.

Personally, I felt it was such a huge expenditure the Government incurred in Lok Sabha to get these debates - all at the cost which the public pays to help these politicians play their tantrums ON AIR. Shame indeed that these elected representatives have not qualms about spending public money in this manner.

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

The Times of India on Mobile

Bhaskar Pramanik, MD of Oracle India; Ravi Venkatesan, chairman of Microsoft India; Girish Paranjape and Suresh Vaswani, joint CEOs of Wipro; and Ashok Soota, executive chairman of MindTree. In the past few weeks, all these titles became redundant. These high-profile exits have raised a buzz not just in the executive hiring circles, but in the industry at large.

At a time when attrition levels are running high across levels, multiple senior-level exits in quick succession are bound to see a ripple effect on the industry and employees, human resources practitioners say. There is no denying the tremendous influence a leader has on the functioning and the culture of an organization. As one Wipro middle management employee says, "We're expecting major changes in the new financial year."

However, people quitting at that level need not necessarily be a bad thing. "It is a good opportunity to bring in a fresh set of ideas and perspective that work well for the company," says J K Agrawal, head of BTI Consultants, the executive hiring arm of Kelly. "While it may seem like an upheaval initially, people are able to see the positives in the long run."

Often, what makes a difference is the reason why those in leadership roles quit. "Sometimes, the role in the company no longer aligns with the individual's career plans. The market today is so full of opportunities that it seems only fair that if people at other levels can hop, so can they. Then there are those who have the entrepreneurial urge. Of course, in some of the recent cases, it has been about people taking responsibility for their actions," says Priya Chetty-Rajagopal, VP of executive hiring firm Stanton Chase. "It is the reason that determines the response of the employees and industry at large."

The more important issue for the company then becomes, ‘what next?' or rather, ‘who next?'. While most companies try to look for candidates internally, like Wipro has done, some use the opportunity to bring in fresh talent from outside, like Microsoft India seems to be doing.

"Hiring someone internally has its advantages. You don't have to give them a huge pay hike immediately and, more importantly, they're familiar with the culture and the functioning of the company," says Chetty-Rajagopal. "Also, you're sending out a message to employees that consistent performance and loyalty does have its rewards."

When hiring someone externally, companies need to cough up anything between 20-40% pay hike. "The downside to that is that, a huge chunk of the salary for the new candidate is performance linked and variable. This adds to the pressure from day one," says an HR executive.

There is also an associated threat that when a top boss leaves, he takes his favourites along with him.

"When rumours of Girish Paranjape joining Microsoft spread, we kept speculating who else would quit from Wipro to join Microsoft," says a Wipro employee. But that is not likely to happen in a hurry, say industry experts. "It doesn't reflect too well if done immediately. However, in time some movements might happen and they will be done subtly," says an industry expert.

BlackBerry PlayBook to Match iPad 2 in Price

Why UPS trucks never turn left [video] - Holy Kaw!

Why UPS trucks never turn left [video]

UPS senior VP Bob Stoffel sits down with Fortune to discuss how a company policy of avoiding left turns saves time, money, and the environment.

History's Best Toys: All-TIME 100 Greatest Toys - TIME


Tuesday, 22 March 2011

LinkedIn Surpasses 100 Million Users [INFOGRAPHIC]

We’ve included LinkedIn’s infographic for your viewing pleasure. Click on the image for a full-sized version.

Chandan Chaturvedi's Photos - Wall Photos

Careers360 - Think higher education! Prakash Iyer on how Yusuf Pathan, Tiger Pataudi, Hokaito Zhimomi did it!

THE Cricket World Cup is here! And cricket fever is everywhere. Sport is a terrific metaphor for life, and there are several useful lessons that cricket can throw up for all of us. Here then are three lessons from cricket for the larger game of life.  

1. It’s not what happens to you that matters: it’s what you do about it that counts. He was a prince. Educated at Oxford. Handsome. And a terrific cricketer to boot. At 20 years of age, Tiger Pataudi had the world at his feet. Suddenly, disaster struck. In a tragic car accident, Tiger lost his right eye. Imagine! His world came crashing down.

  He recalls trying to pour tea from a pot into a cup – and spilling it all over. What chance would he have of ever holding a bat again? After all, keen eyesight was seen as an essential ingredient for success. Would that be the end of his cricketing career?  

Tiger may have lost an eye, but instead of focusing on what he had lost, he chose to focus on what he still had: the determination to succeed, the willingness to work hard – and the mindset of a winner. And of course, one good eye. For Tiger, losing an eye was only one more challenge to be overcome on the long road to success.

  Tiger went on to play with distinction for India, became India’s youngest captain – and remains one of the greatest names in Indian cricket. Setbacks are inevitable but how you respond defines your achievements. Next time adversity strikes don’t wallow in self-pity. Be a Tiger!

2. Run your own race: Don’t compare yourself with others; just aim to be the best you can be. Have you heard of Hokaito Zhimomi? Probably not. He is a cricketing hero, the greatest cricketer his State has produced. Idolised by fans , he is an inspiration to young players in his homeland. His claim to fame? In 2008, he became the first cricketer from Nagaland to make it to the big league when he was selected to play for the Kolkata Knight Riders in IPL. It doesn’t matter that he’s never played for India. He is a hero in his own right. A village lad who worked his way to the top and became an inspiration for sportsmen in the region.
Not everyone can become an India player. Or become CEO. But that should not stop you from trying or make your achievements any less significant. Run your own race. Don’t compare yourself with others. Doing well in class is important. You don’t have to come first. Being a successful manager is big. You don’t have to be CEO. Just as being Zhimomi is a big deal. Not everyone can be a Tendulkar! 
3. An extra 30 minutes of effort every day can change your life! Until a few months back, Yusuf Pathan was just another big-hitting T-20 sensation with a not-so-successful limited overs track record. Pathan’s career had seen ups and downs. And then suddenly in the last few months, he seems to have changed gears, winning games from seemingly hopeless situations. He is a changed man now, and undoubtedly one of the most exciting prospects in the World Cup.  How did the transformation happen? How did Yusuf do it? 
In an interview with a newspaper, Pathan explained the secret: “I would always bat for that extra 30-40 minutes after others would leave and that would allow me some undivided attention in which I could pick the coach’s brains.” Easy does it. Just an extra 30 minutes. That’s all it takes. Hard work has its rewards. Just think. What can those 30 minutes do to your career? Make sure you spend an extra 30 minutes every day, getting better. Do the Pathan thing. And see the difference!

Yusuf’s mantra: Batting for an extra 30-40 minutes after practice, gets you the coach’s undivided attention.

Prakash Iyer is MD, Kimberly-Clark, and executive coach. He has recently authored a book titled 'The Habit of Winning'. Post your queries and comments below this column, and Prakash will respond!

Mentoring isn't a Sweetener, it is Brutally Honest, Bitter Truth Pill and KickAss, Stickler Mentor . Many Crack. Few WIN!

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