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Archive for August 2008

Fun with Proverbs in Google Translate

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I love proverbs. They can describe in one line, what at times, cannot be explained in one hundred. However, in this age of globalisation, we must make sure that everybody in the world gets the message in the same clear and concise way. Since this is the age of the internet; and the internet has provided us tools like Google Translate, I tried to experiment a little. After writing this blog’s previous post, I started to wonder that if I were to deliver such a message to a foreign friend of mine, would Google Translate be reliable enough for the job? So I took some common english proverbs, put them in the ‘ol Google Translator, set the destination language to Japanese and hit ‘Translate’. Since I don’t know any Japanese people, I had to do the checking myself. So I opened another tab and reversed the languages. The results that came out were hardly proverbial. Here is a look at what your wise and philosophical sayings might sound like to a foreign friend. As I kept going, I kept experimenting with other languages.  Have fun saying these to people:

A rolling stone gathers no moss: Rolling Stone to gather moss

A leopard cannot change its spots: Attractions leopard can not change.

A picture paints a thousand words: To paint a picture SHIKAZU

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy: All work and play just boring boy Jack

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder: Beauty, AIOBUZABIHORUDA

Curiosity killed the cat: Curiosity is one of poison

Do as you would be done by: So do the same to be held

Familiarity breeds contempt: Introduction breeds contempt

Introduction breeds Contempt

Introduction breeds Contempt

He who lives by the sword shall die by the sword: He who dies in life like the sword of the sword

History repeats itself: Time, history itself

Honesty is the best policy: Frankly, the best way

If you believe everything you read, you better not read: If you feel that you read all the better to read

If you would enjoy the fruit, pluck not the flower: If you enjoy the flowers, no courage
If you enjoy the flowers, no courage

If you enjoy the flowers, no courage

It is easier to get forgiveness than permission: Getting a permission can not imagine a more heinous

It is what is in the mind when sober, that comes out of the mouth when drunk: What is this when the heart is serious, that comes out of the mouth when drunk

Lightning never strikes twice in the same place: Lightning and two attacks in one place
Judging by the above results, Google Translate is clearly not able to render proverbs that my foreign friend can easily understand. So remember that we shall not have truly globalised until we cross-proverbise.
Have fun!

Written by parrymathur

August 26, 2008 at 1320

A Free, Web-based Media Converter

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I was working on Windows today, and desperately needed to view an OpenOffice.org document. Trouble was, I didn’t have OpenOffice.org installed on Windows. I had created the document in question on Ubuntu, which bundles OpenOffice.org by default. Since I had Microsoft Word on my Windows system, all  that I needed to view the nasty boy was a media converter. I quickly googled the phrase: converting .odt to .doc on my little google-box in firefox. A few links later, I found myself at this baby‘s doorstep.

Media-Convert is a free, web-based media conversion tool that converts the files of your choice into the files of your dreams. At first glance, this site seems to drive you away from itself. It screams spam in a thunderous voice. I don’t kid around when I say that half of this amazing site’s home page is nothing but very visible ads, and that half is the half that fills the browser window. I found myself scrolling down for more; and there was much more than just more.

Here’s a look at the media-convert.com homepage:

A screenshot of the media-convert.com homepage
A screenshot of the media-convert.com homepage

However, when I looked at the list of formats this tool supported, I was delighted beyond limits. Here are some formats that they are willing to rip apart and join into new ones for you:

  • Documents, text: Raw text, HTML, XHTML, Microsoft Word, RTF, PDF, PS, Open Office, Star Writer, Pocket Word, Word Perfect
    CSV, dBase, Microsoft Excel, Pocket Excel, Lotus 123, Quattro Pro, Star Calc, Open Office spreadsheet
    MathML, Star Math, Open Office math
    Microsoft Powerpoint, Star Impress, Open Office presentation.
  • Compression Archives: 7Z BZ2 BZA CAB GZ LHA LZH RAR TAR TGZ YZ1 ZIP.
  • Image:AVS BMP CIN DCX DIB DPX FITS GIF ICO JFIF JIF JPE JPEG JPG MIFF OTB P7 PALM PAM PBM PCD PCDS PCL PCX PGM PICT PNG PNM PPM PSD RAS SGI SUN TGA TIF TIFF WMF XBM XPM YUV.
  • Sound: WAV to MP3, OGG, AAC, AMR, FLAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.MP3 to WAV, OGG, AAC, AMR, FLAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.WMA to WAV, OGG, AAC, AMR, FLAC, MP3, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.OGG to WAV, MP3, AAC, AMR, FLAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.AAC to WAV, MP3, OGG, AMR, FLAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.MP4 (AAC) to WAV, MP3, OGG, AMR, FLAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.FLAC to WAV, MP3, OGG, AMR, AAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.VQF (Yamaha TwinVQ) to WAV, MP3, OGG, AMR, AAC, FLAC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.MPC (Musepack) to WAV, MP3, OGG, AMR, AAC, FLAC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.REAL AUDIO to WAV, MP3, OGG, AMR, AAC, FLAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.AMR to WAV, MP3, OGG, AAC, FLAC, MPC, MMF, AU, AIFF, QCP.MMF (pcm) to WAV, MP3, OGG, AAC, FLAC, MPC, AMR, AU, AIFF, QCP.AU to WAV, MP3, OGG, AAC, FLAC, MPC, AMR, MMF, AIFF, QCP.AIFF to WAV, MP3, OGG, AAC, FLAC, MPC, AMR, AU, MMF, QCP.QCP to WAV, MP3, OGG, AAC, FLAC, MPC, AMR, AU, AIFF, MMF.3GP to WAV, MP3, OGG, AAC, FLAC, MPC, AMR, AU, AIFF, MMF.+ Amiga files (8SVF, MAUD), Psion files (PRC, WVE), SNDT, SF, SoundBlaster VOC, AVR, TXW, Soundtracker files (MOD, XM FastTracker, IT ImpulseTracker, S3M ScreamTracker), … ID3 (v1 and v2) Tag preservation for MP3, OGG, AAC, WMA and MPC files.
  • Music, monophonic & polyphonic ringtones: MIDI, MIDI-0, SP-MIDI, CMX, MMF, MOTOROLA, SAGEM, EMELODY, IMELODY, EMS, RTTTL/RTX, NOKIA, NOKIA-TXT.
    Formats used on most common cellular phones like Alcatel, Mitsubishi, Samsung, Nokia, Siemens, Nec, Panasonic, Sagem, Sharp, Sony, Trium, Sony-Ericsson, LG, Motorola.

Did you see that list? The online software detects the file type that you want to covert and also shows recommendations for the destination formats. It even managed to detect my Pocket Tanks game’s .it music file and suggest a conversion to mp3.

Converting a file involves uploading a file from your local storage on to their server; selecting a source format (which is detected automatically in most cases), and then selecting a destination format. The converted file is available for download from the server once the process has ended.

No wonder they have so many ads. It must be a really popular site. Keep the ads rolling, boys! We don’t want our favorite file-converter to stop converting!

After completing the .odt to .doc file conversion, I was really happy to have come across this little web-wonder. I suggest that you try it, too.

Written by parrymathur

August 20, 2008 at 1346

The Wayback Machine!

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The Internet Archive Wayback Machine is an online service, that takes you back in time. You can find out what (almost) any web page looked like at any point of time. You can go back to as long as 1996 and find out what the web pages of yesteryear looked like. It’s fun to watch Microsoft and Yahoo’s websites rendered in basic HTML and JavaScript. Have Fun!

Written by parrymathur

August 20, 2008 at 1249

Happy Independence Day

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Happy Independence Day to all countrymen! In this post, I’ll tell you about the world’s best chicken biryani. If you love chicken biryani and happen to live in New Delhi, then go to Jamia. I don’t remember the name of the shop, but ask anyone down there about the famous chicken biryani shop, and they’ll ket you know. Try some. I assure you that you won’t be dissappointed. If I’m writing about it on a blog, then it must be good.

Written by parrymathur

August 15, 2008 at 1741

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