Music library? iTunes? Yahoo! Music engine? Songbird?

For quite some time, I have been using iTunes for all my music needs – buying, listening, ripping my CDs. It is literally my big music library.

In the meantime, I tried Yahoo Music engine and Songbird (0.1?). I am impressed with Yahoo music engine and I was impressed with Songbird 0.1 Now, Songbird not yet 0.2 has been released. I did not test it, yet. I am waiting for the version of a software that can do at least the following:

  1. Import all the stuff that I have in iTunes – I have several playlists/smart playlists, etc.
  2. Use the iTunes subnet to listen to other’s music and provide access to others to listen to it.
  3. Directly let me buy from iTunes or Microsoft or Yahoo or Realplayer and play any of my purchased music.

Is this really possible?

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Some interesting Marathi names

Marathi surnames are very interesting. One of the most fascinating surnames is Pai. In Marathi language, it is just one letter.

I have tried to group some Marathi surnames into some interesting combinations (rough meanings in parenthesis).

  1. Wagh (Tiger)
  2. Waghdhare (Tiger catcher)
  3. Waghmare (Tiger killer)
  1. Khare (True)
  2. Khote (False)
  1. Landge (Wolf)
  2. Kolhe (Fox)
  1. Bhoot (Ghost)
  2. Deo/Dev (God)
  3. Bhute (Ghosts?)
  1. Muley (Root)
  2. Zhade (Tree/Plant)
  3. Phule (Flower)

The list continues… is very long!

Last names… again

This time, about Marathi surnames.

Wikipedia states:

“In Maharashtra and Gujarat, the naming system is very similar to the first-middle-last format followed in the western world. e.g. “Sunil Manohar Gavaskar”, here “Sunil” is the (first) name of the person. “Manohar” is the father’s name, which is often abbreviated as an initial, and “Gavaskar” is the last or family name. Traditionally, women take their husband’s name as their middle name and also adopt his family name.”

Clearly, the total number of surnames in India itself tends to infinity, independent of the region, but a generic observation of our surroundings will clearly illustrate that Maharashtrian surnames itself contribute as an infinitely large set.

Microsoft Office 2007 Beta 2

I tested Office 2007 beta 2, and immediately, I have moved away from two of my previously favorite software:

  1. Mozilla Thunderbird: Microsoft Outlook 2007 has excellent support for IMAP and also for replying to emails. In addition, I have an Exchange account and now everything can be managed easily.
  2. Openoffice: Already, I was unhappy with openoffice for very poor support for bibliography (limitations on length of the journal title, etc.). Microsoft Word 2007 is fantastic. The equation editor is good and there is a built in support for bibliography.

In addition, the ribbon UI of Office 2007 is amazingly easy to use. Hopefully, other software may take some inspiration and come up with something better, if not the same!

Windows vs Linux

My wife, Neelam, has successfully installed Windows XP Professional and several pieces of hardware on our home computer.

She tried to install Ubuntu Linux but ended up with, "now I know why people don't use Linux." After initial installation, I had to boot up a separate notebook (of course running Windows) and run several commands in a command prompt, before she could do anything.

When will a common man move from Windows to Linux?

  1. when Linux has good support for different hardware – my wife does not know what compiling and linking is supposed to do.
  2. when Linux has a very simple and reliable installation procedure .
  3. when Linux has good pdf support! Can I use Linux in a completely paperless environment. I cannot do any pdf editing or annotation as I can do in Acrobat. Acrobat does not support Linux anymore!
  4. when regular Linux users stop being geeky and showing off that using Linux is for geeks.
  5. when sites are not being designed for Internet Explorer… using wine is not a good enough alternative at all!

But, there is one promising solution – Ubuntu, which is really linux for Human beings. In my 9 years of using, installing and adminstration of a few flavors of Linux for the home and general office use, I have never seen anything as simple as Ubuntu.

  1. I did finally get around to run Ubuntu without having to use the command prompt at all.
  2. Every morning, I wake up with updates that come from the Ubuntu repository!
  3. It also has excellent support for WPA security. I don't understand how KNetworkmanager on KDE works on Ubuntu, but does not on Fedora.
  4. My friend's kids (aged 5 and 8) love Edubuntu. When they come to my home, they rush to use it! They have used it for several hours and several times and absolutely no problems. I don't have to monitor them at all!

Yet, Windows is difficult to go away with. Linux is playing catching up with Windows. Openoffice is doing the same with Microsoft Office, just as Internet Explorer is doing with Mozilla Firefox.