Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Google Search Tips - Brought to you by Google!

I never knew Google had been this useful!!! Just remember there are a lot of answers God can give you what Google can't!

1. Either/or.

Google normally searches for pages that contain all the words you type in the search box, but if you want pages that have one term or another (or both), use the OR operator  or use the symbol (pipe symbol) to save you a keystroke. [enjoy | the | masti]


If you want to search for an exact phrase, use quotes. [enjoy the masti] will only find that exact phrase. [enjoy the masti] will find pages that contain the word enjoy and the exact phrase the masti.

3. Not.

If you dont want a term or phrase, use the - symbol. [-enjoy the masti] will return pages that contain the and masti but that dont contain enjoy.

4. Similar terms.

Use the ~ symbol to return similar terms. [~enjoy the masti -enjoy] will get you pages that contain funny the masti and stupid the masti but not enjoy the masti.

5. Wildcard.

The * symbol is a wildcard. This is useful if youre trying to find the lyrics to a song, but cant remember the exact lyrics. [cant * me love lyrics] will return the Beatles song youre looking for. Its also useful for finding stuff only in certain domains, such as educational information: [enjoy the masti research *.edu].

6. Advanced search.

If you cant remember any of these operators, you can always use Googles advanced search.

7. Definitions.

Use the define: operator to get a quick definition. [define:enjoy] will give you a whole host of definitions from different sources, with links.

8. Calculator.

One of the handiest uses of Google, type in a quick calculation in the search box and get an answer. Its faster than calling up your computers calculator in most cases. Use the +, -, *, / symbols and parentheses to do a simple equation.

9. Numrange.

This the-known feature searches for a range of numbers. For example, [best books 2002..2007] will return lists of best books for each of the years from 2002 to 2007 (note the two periods between the two numbers).

10. Site-specific.
Use the site: operator to search only within a certain website. [site:enjoythemasti.com leo] will search for the term leo only within this blog.

11. Backlinks.

The link: operator will find pages that link to a specific URL. You can use this not only for a main URL but even to a specific page. Not all links to an URL are listed, however.

12. Vertical search.

Instead of searching for a term across all pages on the web, search within a specialized field. Google has a number of specific searches, allowing you to search within blogs, news, books, and much more:

* Blog Search
* Book Search
* Scholar
* Catalogs
* Code Search
* Directory
* Finance
* Images
* Local/Maps
* News
* Patent Search
* Product Search
* Video

13. Movies.

Use the movie: operator to search for a movie title along with either a zip code or U.S. city and state to get a list of movie theaters in the area and show times.

14. Music.

The music: operator returns content related to music only.

15. Unit converter.

Use Google for a quick conversion, from yards to meters for example, or different currency: [12 meters in yards]

16. Types of numbers:

Google algorithms can recognize patterns in numbers you enter, so you can search for:
* Telephone area codes
* Vehicle ID number (US only)
* Federal Communications Commission (FCC) equipment numbers (US only)
* UPC codes
* Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) airplane registration number (US only)
* Patent numbers (US only)
* Even stock quotes (using the stock symbol) or a weather forecast regarding the next five days

17. File types.

If you just want to search for .PDF files, or Word documents, or Excel spreadsheets, for example, use the filetype: operator.

18. Location of term.

By default, Google searches for your term throughout a web page. But if you just want it to search certain locations, you can use operators such as inurl:, intitle:, intext:, and inanchor:. Those search for a term only within the URL, the title, the body text, and the anchor text (the text used to describe a link).

19. Cached pages.

Looking for a version of a page the Google stores on its own servers? This can help with outdated or update pages. Use the cached: operator.

20. Answer to life, the universe, and everything.

Search for that phrase, in lower case, and Google will give you the answer.

Happy Googling Folks.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Unity Faith Dicipline - Golden Principles of Jinnah

One of my cousin’s 4 year old daughter went to her father and said, "You and Mama don't give me anything! You just spend on my education, give me food to eat & clothes to wear! Look at Aunty who lives in the neighbourhood, she gives her children candies to eat and they also go to tuition centres!"

Today if you ask, what do like about Pakistan, a lot of people might say “not much”. Isn’t our behaviour is like the same little girl. Our country does not give us candy? Its hard to accept but we are becoming an ungrateful nation in the given conditions of the country (I won’t dig the details because you see it hear it everyday what's happening around us in the economy, politics, sports, and society). 

At this point the thought to ponder is "Khuda uss qaum ki halat nahi badalta jab tak wo apni halat khud nahi badalte." I think its about time that we should stop playing the blame game and try to change ourselves 1st. How many of us stop at a red light or don't bribe a cop or try to get free in a concert or are not trying to cut corners in taxing, or stealing water or electricity, even flood relief goods are stolen and sold in the market! 

We must not forget the sacrifices, the efforts and endeavours our ancestors made to get this country and above all let’s not forget the 3 principles – Unity, faith and Discipline.

We are a nation who can fight with each other over anything - whether its over religion, politics, family issues, even in a routine cricket match. Maybe that's just because we are an emotional nation. Thats the point where Unity comes into play. As a nation We all are Pakistanis. Its about time racism and riots should be set aside and the nation needs to stand under one flag!

Faith makes you stronger. No matter to what religion we belong to.. most of us don't have strong faith. We need to have faith in God, we need to have faith in our abilities. We need to stay positive. We need to see the brighter side of the picture if we want to change our present!

Discipline is something we badly lack. This is something I had explicitly discussed in my previous post "From Human Beings to being Human"


After every dark night, there is always a bright shiny day we must remember that as a Nation.
Lets embrace Unity, Faith Discipline in our lives in true letter and spirit and stand out as a prominent nation in the world.

Long Live Pakistan.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

The “All you can eat” fever!

Yess I’m back with a discussion on a fever which is almost over with the end of Ramazan.  I’m not very much into economics but I do remember the basic Law of diminishing marginal utility my eco teacher taught me which stipulates:

“A law of economics stating that as a person increases consumption of a product there is a decline in the marginal utility(The additional satisfaction a consumer gains) that a person derives from consuming each additional unit of that product.”

My eco teacher shared a basic example for this law: If I’m thirsty and its hot out there, I would want a chilled bottle of coke. When I drink a bottle of coke, I'll gain some utility. Ahhh yes I want more. When I will drink another bottle of coke, I will gain more utility but on a lower scale because the second bottle won’t be much refreshing as the 1st one. And If I continue doing that, there will be a stage where my utility will become negative and it would yield disutility and I would be rushing to the washroom.

If you think for a moment, Aha.. That’s the ground on which buffet-style restaurants operate. They entice you with "all you can eat deals," while knowing each additional plate of food provides less utility than the one before.

Although Buffet restaurants continue on the same approach throughout the year, but in the month of Ramazan, most of Ala Carte restaurants also start offering all you can eat iftar+dinner. This Ramazan I also caught the same fever of all you can eat. After visiting Rangoli, Lal Qila, Shan e Mughlia, student biryani etc. the most crowded place I found was Pizza Hut where all you can eat and drink for Rs 700 (600+Tax). I noticed people of all ages were there at Pizza Hut to fill their appetite after whole day fast. 

Being a rational consumer we calculate, value for money  on our every spend. Driven by our sense of value. Similarly, at pizza hut Everyone would be calculating how much slices should he or she must have to make the deal worth it. If I recall  that deal started off for Rs 250+tax  which  is now offered for Rs  600+tax. If you ask me the max slice I ate so far is eight with three glasses of drink. But I'm cool with that.

When we're spending 700 rupees for all you can eat pizza, we forget the taste has to be that good as well. But the taste is not the same either nor the service. At times there is too much gap in one serving that you decide that you're done. I remember my last year experience with Ahsan came back from Kuwait, I was actually served four slices in the given time!

Another side of the picture, where there are people in our country who don’t even have food to eat, we see loads of pizza’s getting wasted where people just eating the topping discarding the crust just to claim eating 25 slices to “make the deal worth it and to save stomach space”  If you came all the way to pizza hut just to eat cheeze, you could have grabbed cheese slices from a store and saved your time and money!

This is how the law of diminishing marginal utility works. You go to a pizza hut and the first slice of pizza you eat is very good. On a scale of ten you would give it a ten. After 3 slices, your hunger has been somewhat under control, but you get another slice. Since you're not as hungry, your enjoyment rates declines to seven at best. Most people would stop before their utility drops even more, but hey..  you gotta have the value for your money and your greed makes you want more so grab more slices and your utility drops even more to three. If you keep eating, you would eventually reach a point at which your eating makes you sick, providing dissatisfaction, or 'dis-utility.' The ultimate result, puking, stomach aches, bad stomach etc.

The bottom line, All you can eat offers have become just a race and greed for eating more than you can handle instead of a tasteful pleasurable experience pizza hut is known for. I remember my nana abbu used to say "Baita pait hai dozakh nahi k bharay he na"

A similar experience a friend of mine Zubair had at a buffet restaurant, where he spent around Rs 1000, ate hardly for 10 minutes and he was done, which means that buffet cost him Rs 100 per minute experience! You can read his post below:

Monday, September 6, 2010

Journalism Vs Activism

Whoa its been quite sometime I've been off the radar. Yes thank you people for missing me. I was pretty busy in my media ethics assignments and blogging on mediabaithak that I  visit my scribble book for whole month!

Well now I'm back and I promise it was worth the wait. Sharing with you people is a piece I wrote for Media Baithak blog. A lot more is yet to come!

Simply put in an equation:
Journalism – Ethics = Activism

Journalism is a noble profession but sadly, Activist Journalists have choked the dignity of this profession.

Journalism is about reporting of facts. Its about bring out the truth to the people with honesty and responsibility. Its about following certain ethics, it requires objectivity. Its about writing with your heart and passion, not for the money.

There is a fine line difference between journalism and activism. Journalism is about digging and bringing out the facts for the target audience/reader or viewer as the case maybe. It involves investigation and reporting of events, issues, and trends to a broad audience.

Activism is an action or inaction to bring about social or political change or to form an opinion on a certain issue to influence the minds of your reader mostly on a controversial argument. An activist is a person who has his influence over other people because of his charisma and who forms perceptions in the minds of the people through his views.

Living in an age where we see media organisations fighting over each other in the race of TRPs, READERSHIP OR listnership, WE have seen a new breed of journalists... The Activist Journalists.. people who actually journalists but acting like activists! These people are expected to bring the truth on the surface but actually they are giving their own views to the public.

A lot of anchors and hosts have been formulating their own opinions rather than finding or highlighting the solutions from the debates. the main concern comes is about the trust factor. Audience still trusts media which is busy formulating opinions for them. Instead of "I'm going to give you the facts" its "I'm going to give you my views" This ultimately results in a major shift in the society that can ravage people against the govt. laws even.

After the airblue crash, we saw a lot of controversies these activists tried to manipulate, although investigation of concerned authorities was being conducted and nothing documentary evidence was there.

Summing up, media needs to stand under the umbrella of journalist ethics and assume its responsibility very carefully. A journalist looks back in the past and feels proud whereas an activist feels guilty deep down inside for the misuse of his opinions and positions. Journalists must always aim to be removed from the issues they are covering. They must avoid becoming emotionally and politically involved, because once they do they are likely to lose their objectivity. They should provide the basis for a healthy and robust public debate. All journalists will have their own political points of view, but these must never creep into journalism and they must not have any bearing on the choice of stories they cover or the way they cover them.