Dec 31, 2011

Good bye 2011! Hello 2012 ...


"What can be said in New Year rhymes,
That's not been said a thousand times?
The new years come, the old years go,
We know we dream, we dream we know.
We rise up laughing with the light,
We lie down weeping with the night.
We hug the world until it stings,
We curse it then and sigh for wings.
We live, we love, we woo, we wed,
We wreathe our prides, we sheet our dead.
We laugh, we weep, we hope, we fear,
And that's the burden of a year."

May happy times and warm memories brighten your new year.
Have a great year. Happy New Year.

Dec 30, 2011

Before the walls came down ...


This is the entrance to Maafannu ward cemetery.
The walls came down to about halfway earlier this year.
They said our youngsters were using the compound for doing illegal stuff.
And that they were disturbing the dead. And not showing respect.
Well, now that the walls have come down, lets see how that goes.
I'm skeptical, but I do hope it goes better.


Dec 28, 2011

The yellow crane ...


Saw this noisy machine passing by my house.
This is the view from my third floor balcony. Its pretty big!
Could not capture as much detail as I wanted to. Should try harder.


Dec 25, 2011 This is beyond stupid !!!



Why does our National Budget website have a section to create your own avatar using 31 programme budget icons? I have no vague idea!

I can understand if this was on a private or a commercial website marketing a product or a brand. I might even understand this on Tourism Portal website using unique Maldivian icons to make an avatar which might appeal to a foreign visitor.

I don't know about everyone on the internet, but I would usually visit a government website when I need to look up current and accurate information or when I need historical data for a research project. I visited the Ministry of Finance website to have a look at our National Budget. I wanted to see how much the projected national revenue was and how it has been sliced to be spend on health, education, transport and infrastructure projects among others.

While looking at the budget, I did find some ambitious projects while huge sums of money have a been allocated to highly controversial and still hotly debated projects. I guess that will always be the very nature of every annual national budget of any given country.

However, during no time that I spent on that website did I have the slightest inclination to upload my photo and make an avatar to use on any social network. I don't really know where to begin to tell someone how inappropriate this is. I think its highly unprofessional for an official government website.

But thats just me, your mileage may vary. So, go ahead, give it a shot if you so want. In the mean time I'll visit the Health Ministry website and try to find an online game you can play while you wait for them to activate our free health insurance!


Dec 24, 2011

Marsh land in Kulhudhuffushi ...


Some say its marsh land. Some say its a body of water. Some say its fresh water, others say its brackish water. Whatever they say, This is a beautiful place. I went there one afternoon and it was very peaceful. A must visit if you are in the area.

H.Dh. Kulhudhuffushi,

Dec 23, 2011

Abandoned: Back to nature ...


From where I come, I will return.
Just a stone's throw away from the last house on the main road, an old abandoned truck is being claimed back by nature. Half of it has already gone! I'm told this is one of the first trucks to be brought on to the island for the harbor project.
I wanted to do an HDR of this, but I didn't get enough time set up a tripod and take multiple shots. I should have! Next time, maybe.

H. Dh. Kulhudhuffushi,

Dec 22, 2011

Children's park at Kulhudhuffushi ...


Children playing in an elevated play house at a small children's park.
Malé needs to get more of these children parks soon. We need them more than ever now.

H. Dh. Kulhudhuffushi

Dec 13, 2011

iTunes: Thanks for the free stuff …



I have said it before and I'll say it again. I am not crazy about iTunes. Its one of the most unresponsive piece of software I use on my Mac. Maybe, I'm not using it right, maybe I'm not using it enough, I don't know. But that doesn't mean I won't use iTunes, I will. Especially when they give me free music, videos, apps and more.

I don't exactly know when I started checking out the free stuff they offer on iTunes, but I'll tell you this; some of the songs and stuff iTunes offers for free are really good. Free is not always crappy.

Problem is, they keep the free stuff up for a limited time only. Mostly, a week or so. After that, you got to pay for it.

So its important that you check iTunes regularly for free stuff. Thats easier said than done. However, I did find some blogs that help you find free stuff on iTunes. They keep their blogs updated with all the latest offers in all iTunes markets. They all pretty much have the same information, so subscribing to one of them would probably get you all you need.

Here are the links to those blogs:
Free iTunes Donwnloads 
iT’S Free Downloads 
US iTunes Free Downloads 

Also, if you are in dire need to update your music collection, check out SPIN magazine. They come out with free playlists on iTunes about once a month, I think its called the LSTN series. Just head over to SPIN website and grab the code. Make sure you redeem it and download the playlist from iTunes before it expires at the end of each month.

If you know or use anything free like SPIN playlists to get your music, please do let me know in the comments. I would like to check them out. Free is always good!

Enjoy your music.


Dec 11, 2011

The Dark Knight Rises: The legend ends ...


Looks great!
In the meantime, enjoy the wallpaper.

Dec 10, 2011

Sin tax: Heavily taxing our smokes ...



Rant mode: ON

Cigarette prices have increased dramatically over the past week. Today I paid more than double the price last week for a pack of Camel Blue. Yep, no more Camel Lights!

Smoking is injurious to health. Though there is a continuous debate about the risks of passive second hand smoke, the general consensus among us all is that cigarette smoking puts you and other around you at risk. I believe so too.

There is absolutely no doubt, cigarette smoking is a prominent public health concern in the Maldives, especially with almost 50% prevalence rate in youth demographic. Health Ministry officials must be planning and working on clever ways to deter smokers, or so I assume. I assume, because I've not seen many anti-smoking campaigns in the country. Except to periodically increase excise tax of cigarettes.

It seems our government is on a tax spree these days. They are taxing anything and everything, so there is no reason why cigarettes should not be taxed, especially when tax money is used to build, run and maintain public services — including health facilities. Sin tax for the betterment of the country? Sure!

Simply put, if you are responsible for paying the hospital bills (read: Madhana, national insurance plan) for a group of people, you will want them to refrain from damaging their health. That is a no brainer. Though some people advocate that the government should not try to be the moral compass for smokers, I personally believe that, the government has every right to help the citizens stay healthy.

However, I vehemently disagree with the method employed by the government to curb cigarette smoking. Doubling or tripling excise taxes and thus exponentially increasing the retail price of cigarettes feels lot less like a Government initiative to discourage smoking but more like a callous effort to balance the national budget.

This is the Government we are talking about and I don't suppose we  need to tell them that cigarettes are addictive in nature and that addiction plays an important role in the decision making and purchasing process of smokers. Any regulation that limits smoking or freedom of smokers will be met by stark criticism.

Every society on this planet has its vice. Maldives being a muslim country, the only legal vice we can afford to indulge in is smoking. Drastic changes in prices of an addictive product like cigarettes may actually have unintended consequences. Off the top of my head, here is what comes to mind.

Craving will triumph price. It won't reduce the number of smokers. Smoking is addictive. Price elasticity of demand does not apply to cigarettes. An increase in cigarette prices has had nil to little impact in consumption. Cigarettes remain price inelastic. A price increase has never diminished the number of smokers in a community. However, there is some indication that it may deter potential smokers who light up for the first time. This is the only group of people who will respond to a price increase.

Cheap cigarettes will flourish. This may actually make people smoke more. We all want to smoke fresh top brand cigarettes but when you can't afford the premium, you settle for cheap sub-standard products. Used to smoke Camel Lights? Now you will smoke Lucky Strike from Sri Lanka, Dunhill from Indonesia and Marlboro from China. Cheap cigarettes will flood the market. This will again put existing smokers at more risk. Not good.

Smuggled and contraband cigarettes. Cheap cigarettes for everyone and a decrease in government revenue. If there is enough demand for a product or service, someone will surface somewhere to provide just that. When onerous taxes are levied on cigarettes it will induce smuggling and open up the market for illicit traders to cater for consumer demand for cheaper cigarettes. This will push the trade underground and off the books. Total tax-paid industry volume of cigarettes may decrease. Not good.

Increase in crime rate and corruption. If you can't afford to feed your addiction, you are bound to make hasty decisions which might involve participating in illegal activities. Criminal networks that specialize in cigarette smuggling and street vending operate more comfortably in small countries with high cigarette tax but lack proper monitoring controls. Also, the level of tobacco smuggling tends to rise with the degree of corruption in a country. Naturally.

If the rationale of this sudden increase in excise tax is to reduce smoking amongst the population, that is a sadly misinformed and unfortunate decision. Personally, I think the only way to significantly reduce cigarette consumption in the country is through early preventive education starting from childhood. Price alone won't change anything, not with smokers.

The average politician may think that a staggering price increase may make Maldives slowly and diffidently quit smoking. I think not, it will just make us go more broke!

That enough ranting. Now I need a Dunhill Light.

Rant mode: OFF


Dec 6, 2011

Desktopography: Got some good stuff ...



It goes without saying that these days, one has to spend a lot of time in front of a computer. Be it work, play or both.

I spend a few hours on my laptop everyday and I have this bad habit of saving my current and no so current projects on my Desktop. As it happens, I get to stare at my Desktop more than I want to. I never could break the habit of organizing my Desktop files, but did manage to pick up on changing my Desktop wallpaper in a desperate effort to make my Desktop look better.

I know people who are obsessed to change their Desktop backgrounds everyday. Hell, I know people who use special programs to automatically download and change their Desktop backgrounds everyday. I am much too lazy. I don't change my backgrounds months on end.

The picture you see here is the current Desktop background on my laptop. Got it free from Desktopography.

I went from Landscapes to Gothic to semi-nude girls. Movie posters to pictures I took while out and about to default OS X Backgrounds. Having a liking to dark abstract these months.

What does your background look like and where did you get it from?


Nov 30, 2011

A creative writing workshop with Ashok Ferrey ...



About a week ago, I attended a one-day creative writing workshop organized by National Center for Arts of Maldives and Open Mind Workshops based out of Colombo. The workshop was hosted by Mr. Ashok Ferrey, one of the best English Language writers in Sri Lanka. He has three published books and is about to publish his fourth.

I was not supposed to be attending the workshop. I wasn't the least bit stoked about attending a lecture where almost everyone in the seminar hall could write circles around any tripe I could ever write.

I just went there in the morning to help out my friend Simon in arranging the whole thing. When Simon asked me to join in for a few minutes and listen to what this Ashok guy had to say, I reluctantly sat down hoping I could sneak out unnoticed when the attendees break out for morning tea. I was sleepy and I wanted to go home!

Ashok started the workshop informing us that he is old fashioned and that he would not have any slide shows or visuals up on any screens and he'd just use pen and paper. I chuckled silently at this and started mentally planning the shortest and safest route to the exit.

Half hour in to the lecture, after the introductions, Ashok started talking about and pointing out things that I didn't even know I did when I sat down to write something. Ashok had some insights about all the stages of the lengthly process of writing and he patiently dumbed it down and shared it with us. I was hooked.

He talked about professional writing techniques. How to tap in the the inner voices in our heads, how to control it and turn it on and off on demand. He told us it is a trick that every writer should try to master, and that some would master it sooner than others. I'm sure I'll be the last person to master this, if I ever do. Perhaps because listening to voices inside your head and trying to interact with them is, in my book, a good working definition for insanity. With a febrile imagination like mine, I'd definitely try this technique very carefully.

Ashok went on to explain how we should properly plan out our writing, how we should write something, bury it, and return to work on it after a few days. Ashok explained to us how we should break down our work to short manageable paragraphs, how we should try and describe people without using adjectives and how we should try to limit the commas we use in our writing because they have a tendency to slow the reader down.

I really enjoyed the workshop. After the Q&A session towards the end of the day, I stood in line to purchase his books. I picked up Colpetty People and The Good Little Ceylonese Girl, both collections of short stories. I also stood in line to get Ashok to autograph my books. It was a good day and I was one the last to leave seminar hall. I had an enlightening and fun time!

A well planned and well executed creative writing workshop can elevate your work exponentially. You can take away a lot from these kinds of workshops to help you improve your writing skills. I'd definitely recommend any of Ashok's workshop to any of my friends who wants to improve their writing. Be it journalism, magazine articles, business letters or novels.

If you think I've become slightly better at getting my point across to you in this blog, all thanks to Ashok. If not, I must have dozed off in class again. I really need to stop doing that.


PS: Ashok Ferrey is a pseudonym.

Nov 28, 2011

Ordered: KODAK PLAYSPORT Zx5 video camera ...



So it has been a few months since I've been thinking about getting myself a small video camera. Not a big HandyCam type, but the small home movie type.

I have been researching this for a bit now and it seems there are only three good options available to me for the amount of money that I want to spend. The GoPro series, the Flip Series and the Kodak Zi8. The latter has been in active development and had a few recently upgraded models available.

The GoPro was a bit expensive and was designed for extreme sports and fast action recording. Surprisingly, The Flip wasn't available anywhere and I read somewhere that the company has gone belly up. So, the only real choice for me was the Kodak models.

Kodak has a few models available right now but what I had a good look at was the KODAK PLAYSPORT Video Camera. It looked good and the specs were nice enough. FULL HD 1080p recording. HD 720p@60fps for fast action recording. Dustproof, shockproof and waterproof down to 10feet. I read a few only reviews, watched a few YouTube videos reviews and I was sold.

So last week I got on the internet and ordered myself the KODAK PLAYSPORT Video Camera Zx5. I went for the BLACK version. Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals were in full swing. I crashed the party as well and got a steep discount. Good timing I guess.

My camera has shipped and is on the way here now. Can't wait to get my hands on this and shoot some baby videos. Looks like I can do exactly that later this week.
  • Processed Through Sort Facility, November 23, 2011, 11:16 pm, ISC NEW YORK NY(USPS)
  • Arrived at Sort Facility, November 23, 2011, 11:15 pm, ISC NEW YORK NY(USPS)
  • Shipment Accepted, November 22, 2011, 8:53 pm, BROOKLYN, NY 11256
  • Electronic Shipping Info Received, November 22, 2011
Also, I guess now I need to familiarize myself with some video editing software. Come to think of it, I have never even opened up iMovie, ever. Not once.

would appreciate if you could point me in the direction for home video editing. Nothing fancy, just trimming and adding audio tracks and stuff. Thanks.


Nov 25, 2011

Sentiments about the concept of liberty ...



Seems America is waking up. This is good. Check out this poem.
In Arlington we lay to rest
our bravest and our very best.
We send our children off to war
defending what we soon ignore. 
“You’re free to worship,” so we say.
“But if you’re muslim, go away.”
Is this what they were dying for:
Intolerance, and nothing more? 
Must one be christian to obtain
the liberties that we proclaim?
These soldiers died for liberty.
They didn’t die for bigotry. 
So look upon this hallowed field,
not only crosses are revealed.
For you’ll see stars and crescents too.
They also sacrificed for you. 
In Arlington we lay to rest
our bravest and our very best.
They knew what they were dying for.
It’s something that we can’t ignore.
Words of a soldier, written by Joe G. A 27-year veteran of Strategic Air Command, United States Armed Forces.

Sad to say that sometimes, the converse it true too!


Nov 23, 2011

Contemplating Disqus comment system ...


Just a quick note to tell you that, I'm contemplating installing Disqus commenting system on this blog. It seems, Blogger is not showing up comments as it should, there are signing in problems, and I've been told by people on twitter that they have tried commenting on this blog, but the comments just disappear after submission. Well, that is not good. Not good at all!

Disqus seems like a good alternative anti lets you manage comments from multiple blogs in one central location. This is going to be a real time saver. The one killer feature Blogger lacks is the ability to reply to comments from the admin panel. Disqus lets me do this and lot more. Also, I have been hearing a lot of good things about Disqus lately, a lot of high profile people are implementing Disqus commenting system on their blogs. I take this as a good sign, I don't want to make the switch and learn that the service is going away soon.

Disqus is importing all my Blogger comments to its database as I write this post. Check out the blog, see if you like the new commenting area, leave a comment, tell me what you think.

The one caveat I have with Disqus is that, it is trying to do more than what is necessary, too many features, and the commenting area looks a lot busier than what I am used to. Distraction?

Anyway, let us see how it goes.


Nov 22, 2011

Dear Google, I'm not in Australia !!!



This started happening recently. Google thinks that I'm in Australia. redirects to instead of and this terribly annoying. I don't really know how or why this happening. But I know for a fact that I'm not in Australia. I'm in Maldives.

I tried going to and saving my settings, but that doesn't help if I quit and relaunch my browser.

Google says:
Bookmark This is an alternative web address for that always takes you to without redirecting you.
Google, you are not detecting my location correctly. Not even close. Please fix this. Thanks.


Nov 19, 2011

Camel Blue: Limited Edition Box ...



Shameful exploitative advertising or shrewd corporate schemes. Branded marketing or a nauseating advertising campaign. Whatever they are labeling this, I for one, quite like the new design Camel came up for Camel Lights Cigarette packs! I think its pretty cool!

I hear that the new designs that have hit the local stores have sparked a small controversy. Haters going to hate, but I kind of like the limited-edition pack Camel Blue they are rolling out. I think the design is visually appealing and quite hip. I like it!

I'm not promoting smoking. I am not saying its in any way a healthy choice. All I'm saying is I like what Camel have done with the box.

Anyone know why they rolled out this Limited Edition? Any special occasion we don't know about?


Nov 14, 2011

TextEdit: Here’s to the crazy ones ...



I've been on a Mac for several years now and have been using TextEdit as my "go to" word processor. Its simple, clean and quite powerful for normal day to day text editing requirements. At least for me it is.

Few weeks ago, I noticed the TextEdit icon and wondered if there was any actual readable text on the TextEdit icon. I thought it was probably some random unintelligent text made to look like a typical letter. The though has been bugging me since then but I never got around to finding it. Today, I got the chance and did some Googling. What I found was a pleasant surprise.

The Mac OS TextEdit icon contain an actual letter. Not just a letter, but a very nice poem from Apple's "Think Different" advertisement campaign. It reads:

Dear Kate, 
Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. But they have no respect for status quo. You can praise them, disagree with them, quote them, disbelieve them, glorify or vivify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. 
Take Care,
John Appleseed
I know John Appleseed is fictitious name akin to John Doe that Apple uses in their advertisements, but who is Kate?

Seems Apple has actually puts some good thought behind their icon designs. Cool, huh?


Nov 12, 2011

Shockwave Flash: Why won't you just die?



I used to be a true fan of Opera. However, I now use Google Chrome as my main browser. If Chrome gives me any problems, and only then, would I fire up Safari. I have come to like and depend on Chrome very much.

Recently, Chrome has been giving me some troubles. It becomes unusably slow. I have to quit the application and start all over again. This used to happen when I've been using the browser for a few hours or more. Lately, the problem has been more frequent.

I did some Googling and found out that it what you call a memory leak and Shockwave Flash plug-in is to blame. Now that I've found the culprit, its time for me to again Google how to solve this problem.

I can't just disable flash on my desktop. If I did I wouldn't be able to watch YouTube or any other flash videos on websites, right? Also, isn't flash going to die soon? Aren't we all switching to HTML5 or something? Well, at least thats what I keep hearing.

So, how do you fix this in Chrome? Some help would be appreciated.


Nov 11, 2011

The Batmobile: Which one is your favorite ???



The Batmobile. Every kid's dream car. Every man's fantasy ride. You have to admit, it is one smoking cool car!

The Batmobile is the automobile of DC Comics superhero Batman. The car has evolved along with the character from comic books to television and films. Kept in the Batcave, which it accesses through a hidden entrance, the Batmobile is a gadget-laden vehicle used by Batman in his crime-fighting activities.

The Batmobile has gone through a lot of changes over the years since I started reading Batman comics when I was kid. One after the other, The Batmobile has progressively become more tough, more high-tech, more sleek, more bad-ass and a lot more weaponized! The latest iteration of the The Batmobile, the Tumbler, looks wicked cool and completely different and unique from any other Batmobile we have ever seen, and we have seen a few over the years in comic books, cartoons, games and live action films.

Here is a picture illustrating the history of The Batmobile. Take your pick!

Everyone has their favorites, and my favorite Batmobile yet is the version Michael Keaton drove in Tim Burton's Batman movie which came out in 1989, That was one good movie and the car was pretty amazing! For me, there has never been a Batmobile to beat this one.

I know that this version looks less tough, less bad-ass, less high-tech, less military, less intimidating, less practical and maybe even less realistic than the current Tumbler Batmobile and I don't really know why I like this better than others. Maybe because it was damn sleek, darkest black and dead silent. All in all, pretty gothic looking and awesome!

What is your favorite Batmobile? Seems, everyone has one!


Nov 9, 2011

Found it !!! The answer to life's problems …



Vicks VapoRub. This medicine, this ointment, this is the stuff that cures everything. I mean everything. I shit you not!

I'm sure you've used it for something when you were a kid. I am sure it was passed down to you by your parents. I'm sure they would've told you that it worked miracles. I'm almost certain that you would've agreed.

When I was a kid, Vicks VapoRub was used to as cold medicine, cough medicine, for headaches, body pain and all other life's ailments. Whatever was wrong with us physically, the solution was always Vicks VapoRub. It was like a little magic formula. It may not cure anything, but we sure felt that it does! So, smelt it, sniffed it, rubbed it and sometimes, even ate it.

Every household had it. It was like they never ran out of Vicks VapoRub at home. And the best part is, everyone is eager to share it. There is no way someone would say no if you asked they for some Vicks VapoRub. I don't know why!

Lately, I have had to buy a few of these bottles. So I did a little bit of research on it.

I first thought that Vicks from India but turns out its actually an American Product now and its sold globally. Vicks say their VapoRub can help cure cough, nasal congestion, sore throat, runny nose, sneezing, chest congestions, aches, pain, and fever. There have been only few studies done on Vicks VapoRub, but they say it actually does help.

The whole world is addicted to Vicks VapoRub and they think it works wonders. Myself included.


Nexus S: Rooted and ready to go places ... :)



Several weeks after I got my Nexus S earlier this year, a friend installed CyanogenMod 7.0 on it. I really did enjoy using CyanogenMod on my Nexus S. I thought it was faster and much more customizable. The features I used the most were the quick access controls available on the notification panel. It was much better than installing and using a power strip widget on the homescreen.

However, few weeks back, I ran in to some problems. The widgets just wouldn't load. It just started giving me "problem loading widgets" error. I was really busy at the time, and didn't have much time to figure out what was going on. So I installed Google stock Android 2.3.6. on the spot.

Since then, I've been trying to get the phone rooted. The main reason, maybe the only reason, why I wanted to root my phone was that I could install some of the apps I wanted to run. Apps like, Blogger, Twicca and some more. These were apps I use frequently and almost daily. It was a pain to get on the internet and search for APK files for those apps from some underground or warez websites. Also, even if I did install the apps, I couldn't update them and had to go online to find APKs of later version. As you can see, that gets old really fast!

After doing some research on how to get my Nexus S running Google stock Android 2.3.6, I hit this page. I'm not a real techie, but I do know how to follow instructions if they were written simple enough for a 12 year old to understand.

I had my phone rooted in a few mins.

Here are the steps if ever you want to root your nexus S. It works on all variants of Nexus S and Nexus 4g.

1) First, you will need to turn your Nexus S off. Then, power up your Nexus S by doing this: while holding down the Volume Up Button, hit the Power button until you see the bootloader menu come up.

2) Next, connect your Nexus S to your computer via a USB cable.
For Windows, you will need to install ADB drivers.
For Mac and Linux, you will not need any drivers, it should be recognized automatically.
Since I'm on a Mac, I didn't need the aforementioned ADB drivers.

3) Next, download Unzip the]is zip file and you should get a folder named “nexussrootnew”.

4) Copy over the whole nexussrootnew folder into your hard disk’s root directory such as c:\nexussrootnew for Windows and similar in Linux or Mac.

5) Open up a command prompt by typing “cmd” under Start->Search Programs and files.
Then type “cd \nexussrootnew” to browse into the directory in Windows.  For Linux and Mac, should be similar to “cd /nexussrootnew“. I opened up Terminal on my Mac.
Then type “fastboot oem unlock“.
(For Mac, replace fastboot with ./fastboot-mac and for Linux, replace fastboot with ./fastboot-linux).

6) You should see a screen asking you to “Unlock bootloader” like shown below:
Select “Yes” using Volume Up button and hit the Power Button.
(You should see that “LOCK STATE” says “UNLOCKED”, meaning your Nexus S is rooted).

7) Now, having a rooted phone means nothing if you don’t have Superuser app to make rooted apps run so let’s go do that next.
fastboot flash recovery recovery3101.img
(For Mac, replace fastboot with ./fastboot-mac and for Linux, replace fastboot with ./fastboot-linux.)
Next choose “Recovery” using Volume buttons and hit the Power button to enter recovery.

9) Next choose “Mounts and Storage” and hit the Power button.
Then choose “mount USB Storage” and hit the Power button.
This will turn your Nexus S into USB disk drive mode.  Copy over the file file from the nexussrootnew folder into your Nexus S.

10) Next, hit the Power button to get out of USB disk mode and choose “Install zip from sdcard” and hit the Power button.

11) Then choose “Choose zip from sdcard” and hit the Power Button.

12) Then choose the “” and hit the Power Button.  This will install the Superuser app and you can reboot your phone.

Once you reboot your Nexus S, you should find a “Superuser” app in the menu.

Congratulations! Your Nexus S is now rooted!

You can test our your root powers by installing root-only apps like Market Enabler or a Screenshot app.



Nov 5, 2011

iTunes Plus: lets switch it on and see ...



I may prefer using a Mac. I may love using Mac OS X. I may think Apple as a company has some good products out. Some of you may have even labeled me a Mac evangelist. Yet, they do have stuff I just don't enjoy using.

For one, I loathe iTunes!

I think iTunes is slow and bloated. And it updates with minimal changes the day Apple release any product or a product update. So, I try to stay away from iTunes as much as possible. However, thats not quite as easy if you are on a Mac.

I mainly use iTunes to play my music and catch podcasts. Even then, I have iTunes running minimized and in the background. I use the omnipresent menu bar controls to interface with iTunes and play my music. I like it that way. You never even have to see iTunes at all.

The last time I opened up iTunes, there was an link to iTunes Plus. I didn't know what it was so I clicked on it thinking it would tell me more. Well, it did, kind of. It showed me the above screen. I wish it did gave some kind of options whether I wanted it or not. It didn't, but I guess I do want my music to sound better. Here is what Apple says about iTunes Plus.
iTunes Plus is the new standard on iTunes. iTunes Plus downloads are songs and music videos available in our highest quality 256 kbps AAC audio encoding (twice the audio quality of protected music purchases), and without digital rights management (DRM). iTunes Plus music can be burned to CD as many times as you need, synced to any AAC-enabled device (such as iPod, iPhone, or Apple TV), and played on any Mac or Windows computers you own.
Apparently, iTunes is now re-downloading all my purchased songs in double the bit rate and all my music has apparently been upgraded to sound way better. I wouldn't know. Not with these cheap earbuds I use.

I used to have a good pair of Sennheiser earbuds. They were pretty awesome, until it literally started to come apart. I think now would be a good time for me to do a little bit of research and invest in a decent pair of headphones. What do you recommend?


Nov 3, 2011

Addu Convention Center: Place looks good !!!



This right here, is the brand spanking new Convention Center in Addu Atoll. Its almost complete and I hear they are just finishing up the landscaping around the building now. I also heard that they are trying to get the building somewhat Leed certified. That's a first! Good work, people!

Whatever some people are saying about it, I personally think it came out pretty good. I like it. I really do.

This convention Center is being built to host the 17th Saarc Summit. Maldives, especially Addu City and Fuvah Mulak, is gonna play host to the eight summiters from Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and us Maldives!

If all goes well and according to plan, the 17th Saarc Summit is going to put South on the map and boost their local economies. From what I can gather from all the coffee table talk, their economies are doing quite well right now.

I wish our southern friends all the best. This may be the first time you are playing host to an international delegation or this calibre. Do your best and make us proud!

We do appreciate the money, effort and sleepless nights spend by you Southerners in preperation of this event. We know you have worked hard for this and we wish you good luck!

My only real concern here is that I am not sure what the City is going to do with that building after the Summit is over. I am sure Addu City will find a way to montize a facility like that and not let it get run down. I would hate to see a place like this go to waste!


I am not sure who took the above photo. I think I saw it on Twitter. If anyone knows who took that photo, shoot me an email or send me a mention on Twitter. I will see to it that s/he gets proper credit. It is a nice photo!

Oct 30, 2011

This must be some really good milk !!!



Me and a friend went to have breakfast at the carnival area.
I had black tea. My friend ordered a milk tea.
When the bill came, milk tea was 6 times more expensive then black tea.
Makes you wonder what kind of milk they use and how much of it to make one cup of tea.
Must be some seriousy good milk, don't you think?
I'll just stick to my black tea for the time being, I think.
Unless I can have something other than ridiculously expensive premium grade cup of milk tea.

Also, what if someone ordered a Chai with with spices like pepper, ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, and cloves milk and honey?


Oct 23, 2011

If your website does this, then damn you !!!



A quick not to say that if anyone of you have a website that displays a pop up or something like the above, be nice to your visitors and just remove it!

Wait, don't get me wrong. Its not that I want to take away even a bit of ad revenue from any websites I visit. I do not mind ads that are not obstructing the content I want to read.

However, this in my face every time I visit the website is unforgivably annoying, counter productive and cheap. Its also hard to close that darn box on a mobile device!

I don't know much about marketing, but if I had to guess, I'd say you are losing a lot of visitors by showing ads or sign-up boxes like that before anyone gets to your content.

I just want to maybe consume the information you've published. I'm not going to like you on Facebook. Am not going to tweet about your website or sign-up for your newsletter. I haven't even got to your website yet, so please, stop asking already!


Oct 19, 2011

Kiefer Sutherland's The Confession ...



Saw a Web Series a few days ago. It was good. Let me tell you a bit about it.

The Confession is an online-only series. Each episode of The Confession is five to seven minutes long. The whole series is just 10 short episodes.

The series stars Kiefer Sutherland (Jack Bauer from 24? What? How can you ever forget 24?) as a very-good-at-what-he-does Hitman and John Hurt as an old priest with conflicting beliefs.

On a snowy Christmas eve, the Hitman visits a Priest at his church and explains to the priest that he has a kill order for later that night but forces the priest to listen to his confession by telling the priest that he will start killing the people in the church if the Priest does not listen to his full confession.

The story features flashbacks of the hitman showing what he does best while telling the priest how he came to visit him, climaxing with a pretty good twist!

Its a brilliantly scripted series and its amazing how engaing the short series turned out to be. It was really good.

I've shared the complete series here so you can download it easily.

Check it out. I think you'll like it.


Superman dead? A sad day indeed ...


Beaten to death by a girl.
His cousin, in his own town.
A sad day indeed.
I'm sure he is not really dead, but how many times have they killed Superman now?

Metropolis, somewhere around East Coast, United States of America

Oct 17, 2011

Now … Get 50GB from for free for life !!!



I've always shared here with you whenever I got to know about good online file storage services.

I've written on this blog about Upload Robots, Dropbox and quite recently about Minus.

I've had a Box account for a few years now. It gave me 5GB of free space to start with. But last night, I got to know that if your create a new account on Box with an iOS device or log on to your existing Box account with an iOS device, you would immediately get 50GB of space for free, for life!

That is good news for iOS guys, but what about us with Android devices? Well, I tried with my Google Nexus S, and guess what, nothing happened. Android users have been miserably left in the cold for this one. I don't know why, maybe Box wants compete with iCloud.

So, I did what everybody would do in a situation like this. I borrowed a friend's iPhone4, logged on to my Box account, and bam! I now have 50GB for free for life. I can use it however I please.

Remember, is only running this until *December 2nd* this year, and you don't have to have an iOS device to use the free space. If you are on Android or using any other platform, just ask a friend to let you use his/her iOS device to log on to your Box account just once or to create an account on Box. Thats it, you will not need the iOS device anymore.

What are you waiting for? Back up your files now! Enjoy your free space!


Twicca: The best Twitter app on Android ...



What Twitter app do you use on your phone?

Everyone has their preferences when it comes to apps they use on their portable devices. Its quite natural that you've your own set of reasons to use a particular app for doing something on your phones or tablets. There are thousands of apps on the market and they pretty much do the same thing. So, I think, it all boils down to just personal preference. Nothing more.

When I had my Nokia E71, I swore that Gravity was the best twitter client for the Symbian OS. It had its shortcomings but it was the best I ever got to use. I even coughed a bit of my hard earned green to buy it. That must have been the only app I ever bough the whole time I had a Nokia.

Since I got my Google Nexus S in January this year, I've tried almost all popular twitter apps available for Android OS. I've tried the official Twitter app. Tried Seesmic, TweetCaster, TweetDeck and even Plume. I didn't like any of them. Then I stumbled upon Twicca,

Twicca is a full featured twitter client for Android phones. It is highly customizable and has very good plug-in support. I love how I can set color labels to specific people and view most photos in-line. Also, The user interface is beautifully simple, and I kind of like the dark theme. Its nice.

If you have an Android phone, check out Twicca. Its a pretty neat twitter app. I'm sure you'll like it, just give it a go. Its free!


Trying to do the lobster thing ...


Attempting indoor barbecue with all precautions.
Trying to grill a lobster. Did not turn out too well.
Guess I need to learn a lot about shell food.
I had a just a tiny bit, it didn't taste bad.
They say it could have tasted a whole lot better.
Maybe next time!

Malé, Maldives.

Oct 14, 2011

Installing iOS5 ... don't do it if you don't know how ;)


A friend almost bricked his iPhone trying to install iOS5 on his Apple iPhone 3GS.

Oct 13, 2011

… and I am a proud father !!!



There comes a time in everyone’s life, at least there should come a time, where we begin to question our heading in life. A time to snap out of the complacency of today and contemplate towards what we want for tomorrow.

For me, expecting a baby was an exciting and somewhat scary prospect. However, once he arrived safely and seeing him for the very first time, I was filled with such strong instincts to protect, nurture and love the tiny being that all the feelings of stress, confusion and apprehension that I felt before quickly and mysteriously vanished and I was left with nothing but anticipation, excitement and pride.

Must have been a paternal thing, I almost felt like that my brain had just been naturally and instantly re-wired to prepare me as a new parent.

It was a very emotional and hugely rewarding experience, and a truly joyous occasion.

Friends and family were so generous with their well wishes and support I was often at loss of words to say what will truly convey my appreciation. So here is one for you - thank you for your advice, support and all the lovely baby gifts. Thank you very much!

Welcoming the baby into the world was one of the most special and wondrous times of my life. From the moment he was born, he became the focus of each and every thing I did, each and every conversation I had. He is now the center of my universe, everything revolves around him. It an amazing feeling!

Also, now that he is home, sleeping like he should be, I am responsible for providing him with everything he may ever need and make all the decisions pertaining to him in anyway.

Am I scared? Yes! Am I happy? Very!

Now that I'm a parent, this blog may or may not cover some baby topics and parental rants. I feel that I should give a heads up to my readers, so here it is!


Oct 10, 2011

Barbecue: Potatoes over the grill ...


A photo from a barbecue I was invited to a few days ago.
It was at the beach and it was fun!
Among many other things, I learned that aluminum foil retains heat for longer than you'd think.
I am guessing these will be done now :)

Hulhumalé, Maldives.

Oct 6, 2011

Goodbye, Steve ... you'll be missed !!!



Steve Jobs, 1955 - 2011.

You were a man with an extraordinary vision. You were almost single handedly responsible for the huge come back apple made last decade. You were a great CEO and gave us world class computers and magical gadgets. Somewhere in there, you also managed to make Apple one of the most successful technology company on the planet.

As a Mac evangelist, you will definitely be missed. You will continue to be in our machines and gadgets, memories and backups. Goodbye, Steve.


Oct 2, 2011

Google Music Beta: Sign-up from outside US ...



I just signed up for Google Music Beta and have been using it for a few days. Its awesome and works fine outside US. Its a neat idea to have all your music available to you where ever when ever you want to enjoy your music.

So what really is Google Music Beta? Well, in their own words:

Music Beta is a new service from Google that gives you instant access to your personal music collection without the hassle of wires or syncing. Add your music collection and listen on the web or any compatible Android device.
You can upload your own music collection, that is music you have on your computer to Google (up to 20,000 songs) and listen to your songs on any computer or Android device. Now you can take your music where ever you go! Sounds nice, right? Feel like checking it out? Thought so.

As with most new Google services, Music is in Beta testing, by invitation and available for US residents only. That's not good news for us living outside US. So, lets see how we can get around that for now.

There are few ways to dupe Google to think that you are in the US. You can us an American VPN like Hotspot Shield or a Free Web Proxy like Hide My Ass.

I used a different approach. I headed over to proxy list website to find an American Proxy and temporarily reconfigured my Firefox proxy settings. You  may have to try a few proxies out before you find a working American proxy which supports all HTTP standards.

On Windows you can change Firefox proxy setting by going to Tools > Options > Options > Options > Advanced > Network > Settings.

If you are using Firefox on a mac, go to Preferences > Advanced" > Network" > Configure how Firefox connects to the internet > Settings.

I used the above proxy to sign up to Google Music Beta.

It's a good idea to check if you have an American IP address before trying to request or sign up for Google Music Beta. You can check your IP address easily by visiting

Now, using the proxy server to pass off that you are in US, head over to, sign in and request an invite.

It may take a few days, but when you do get the invitation email from Google (or if a friend invites you) make sure that you complete the sign-up process while masquerading that you are in US. If you don't, your sign up will fail.

When you are done with sign-up, you are set. You don't need the proxies anymore. You can utilize the service like any other regular web service.

I have 6 more invites left for Google Music Beta. Comment in your email address if you want an invite.

Enjoy Google Music Beta! It's free, for now.


Sep 25, 2011

Hitting it up at the Farmers Market ...


I’ve been hitting the local Farmers Market quite frequently for a few months now. Exploring, learning, and shopping at the Farmers Market has been something that I've wanted to do for a long time, but I guess it took me a few years to really get into the habit.

Farmers Market (or local market, as its popularly known here) is a public place where farmers and growers interact directly with buyers and other members of of the community. It's become an important service in most cities, where farmers can make a decent profit by selling retail and buyers  have access to fresh locally grown produce. Farmers Markets are critical for the survival of small family-owned farms and preservation of the agriculture oriented island communities across the country.

Yes, some items may be slightly pricier than what you'd pay at your local grocery store, but if you think about the quality, flavor and freshness you'll totally agree to spending a bit more. Besides, a lot of stuff is also cheaper and still of higher quality and freshness, especially what is in season. The last time I went there Papaya was in season and being sold at MRF 5/- a Kilo. I bought a few, naturally.

By shopping at the Farmers Market I get to buy locally grown fresh fruits, vegetables and stuff while doing my bit to support local commerce and agriculture. Local farmers work pretty hard and I think they need all the help that we can give.

My local Farmers Market is situated at the busy marine drive near the old Fish Market area. On my first visit the market looked like a busy, loud and chaotic place with people shouting indiscernible stuff at each other and laughing at their inside jokes. I had no clue what they were saying. I remember I was overwhelmed by the scene, especially seeing buyers who possessed almost a cult-like knowledge of exactly which stall they wanted to go to, what they wanted to buy and where all the bargains are at. I almost felt like a trespasser, it was definitely not a very inviting place.

Fortunately for me, it was a just a phase, it soon passed. Now I feel quite confident shopping at Farmers Market. I can never be as good as some people I know or who I see there regularly, but I don't think I will be lost in the crowd anymore either.

My local Farmers Market has recently been cleaned up, renovated and reorganized. Its quite family friendly now and I've seen kids enjoy their outing there. If you have never been to your local Farmers Market, I sincerely suggest that you check the place out. You might find some stuff that you have always wanted to try but not normally available at your favorite grocery store. You might even discover something that you like that you've never seen or tried before. Who knows, you may even enjoy shopping there.

See you at the Farmers Market!


Sep 21, 2011

Outlander: A terribly underrated movie ... ?!?


Seen any good movies lately? What are some good movies you've watched recently? Its been ages since I've watched anything recent that was worth blogging about.

I've actually started watching movies that came out few years back. It seems re-watching a movie a few years or even months later can totally change the view you held of a movie. You might end up truly liking a movie that you didn't enjoy before. Its weird, but it does happen sometimes, especially if you watch a decent copy of a movie.

I remember watching Outlander when it came out back in 2008. I didn't think much of it then. Am not saying I hated it, just that I didn't think it was a really good movie then.

I watched it again a few days back, in full HD glory, and it turned out to be a brilliant movie. Kind of makes me think why I didn't like it the first time I watched it. I don't know.

The film begins with a spaceship crashing in to Norway, in the year 709 A.D, the era of Vikings. The lone survivor of the crash, Kainan, is taken prisoner by the Vikings. Soon, mysterious disappearances and brutal deaths take place around the Viking settlement and Kainan, tell them an alien creature called the Moorwen is responsible. Initially and understandably so, the Vikings seem hesitant to believe his story, but soon the intergalactic space traveller join forces with the vicious Viking sword fighters to trap and kill the beast.

The movie sports a great cast. James Caviezel as Kainan the space traveler from a far-off world, Sophia Myles as Freya the daughter of the king and Kainan's love interest. It also stars Jack Huston as Wulfric, the young short-tempered Viking warrior, Ron Perlman as Gunnar, the burly leader of the enemy Viking warriors and John Hurt as Rothgar, the king.

James Caviezel was perfect as spaceman adjusting to Viking way of life and Sophia Myles was beautiful and graceful even as a Viking. I remember she was amazing in Hallam Foe, another movie you might want to check out if you haven't seen it yet.

I don't know why Outlander did so poorly in the box office, but I really liked the movie. I think its a very good movie, and is terribly underrated by most movie critics.

Have you seen Outlander? I would like hear your thoughts in the comments.


Sep 17, 2011

Have you read all Tintin comics yet ???


Hello … 

Today I saw the trailer for the upcoming movie The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn and I have to say, it looks pretty darn interesting. I think its going to be huge.

I wrote here before about reading Adventures of Tintin comics when I was younger and reading them again recently. As kids, me and my friends tried collecting all Tintin books. None of my friends were able to collect them all, and neither did I. There were always a few titles missing.

Times have changed since when we were kids, and now, every Tintin comic ever published is available for download on the internet. I list below all the titles I found online. You can easily download the PDFs here if you ever want to read any of the Tintin comics.

01. Tintin in the Land of the Soviets [PDF, 33.5MB]
02. Tintin in the Congo [PDF, 25.7MB]
03. Tintin in America  [PDF, 13.9MB]
04. Cigars of the Pharaoh [PDF, 16.8MB]
05. The Blue Lotus [PDF, 15.7MB]
06. The Broken Ear [PDF, 16.5MB]
07. The Black Island [PDF, 17.1MB]
08. King Ottokar's Sceptre [PDF, 16.1MB]
09. The Crab with the Golden Claws [PDF, 14.2MB]
10. The Shooting Star [PDF, 15.1MB]
11. The Secret of the Unicorn [PDF, 14.8MB]
12. Red Rackham's Treasure [PDF, 15.8MB]
13. The Seven Crystal Balls [PDF, 15.5MB]
14. Prisoners of the Sun [PDF, 16.1MB]
15. Land of Black Gold [PDF, 15.8MB]
16. Destination Moon [PDF, 16.5MB]
17. Explorers on the Moon [PDF, 16.1MB]
18. The Calculus Affair [PDF, 16.2MB]
19. The Red Sea Sharks [PDF, 16.4MB]
20. Tintin in Tibet [PDF, 17.0MB]
21. The Castafiore Emerald [PDF, 16.7MB]
22. Flight 714 [PDF, 18.8MB]
23. Tintin and the Picaros [PDF, 18.0MB]
24. Tintin and Alph-Art [PDF, 15.0MB]
25. Tintin and the Lake of Sharks [PDF, 9.8MB]
26. Tintin in Thailand [PDF, 2.9MB]
27. The Freelance Reporter [PDF, 2.0MB]
28. Tintin and The Mysterious Visitor [PDF, 1.4MB]
29. They Explored the Moon [PDF, 2.1MB]
30. The Voice of the Lagoon [PDF, 5.3MB]

Here is the link to my Tintin folder at Minus. You can browse through all the covers with descriptions and download any and as many you want.

Hope you enjoy the comics. I know I did. Good times!


Sep 15, 2011

Minus: An impressive file storage service ...



Heard about Minus, yet?

I'm big on backing-up my files. I've had hard drives die on me before, I've had a few hard drives fail on me without any kind of warning. I hope it hasn't happened to you yet, but I'm sure you have heard these stories before from your friends. Its not a pleasant experience to have your hard drives fail, nor is it any fun to lose your precious data. Since my last hard drive suddenly died on my a couple of months back, I've been backing-up my files online as fast as my limited internet connection allows me.

So why back-up online you may ask? Well, redundancy! First, I think big name companies offering "could storage" can do a better job of keeping data safe than you or me can ever think of doing. Also, there are other factors to consider, like offsite data storage, security, reliability, easy setup, process of backing up, automation and the list goes on. I don't know about you, but I seriously don't think I can ever keep on top of all these. I want to spend more time creating my data and less time backing-up and safe guarding my data, so personally, I think online storage is the way to go. I hear people saying, the future is in the cloud, and slowly but surely, I'm beginning to see their way of thinking.

The most important aspect of online storage for me is access to my data from anywhere in the world, at home, at office, while away on vacation, a business trip or even on the cell phone! The ability to access my data and the comforting thought of having it just a few keystrokes away, eliminates a lot of hassles, problems, and delays. You never know when you would be asked for a copy of that document. When you would want to show someone that picture. When you might need a copy of your identity card or passport to submit with that form you need to fill out.

I have previously written about Upload Robots and Dropbox. Now, let me introduce you to a relative newcomer on the cloud storage and file sharing scene, Minus.

So, with so many companies to choose from why What sold me was individual file size (2GB) and bigger free space when you sign up. You get 10GB of free space to start with when you sigh up, compared to 2GB from Dropbox and 4GB from Upload Robots.

Minus may be a new, but I like what they have done so far. They have made uploading as easy as drag and drop. Their user interface is simple, intuitive and very user friendly.

Also, they have this new social feature so you can "follow" your friends on Minus, letting you know if they have shared or uploaded anything. I think it's pretty nice.

Give Minus a try, It only takes a few seconds to sign up and start uploading files. If you sign up using my referral link, we both will get 1GB of bonus space for free.

And remember, back-up, back-up, back-up! I'll go now and try practicing what I preach.