Google Calendar

Google Calendar is an online service provided by Google Inc. This is giving all the facilities for the user which is generally given by e mail client software or event management software.  And this is a totally online service, unlike installed PC software, so you can access your calendar anywhere from the globe as long as you have internet connection. Same as Google’s popular G mail, Google Calendar also a Rich Internet Application.

Getting Started


You can access Google calendar at the main navigation bar at the top of Google home page. This may be located under the more links in there. To operate you will require a Google account. If you are already a Gmail user you can use the same account. If you are totally new to Google services when you try to access Google calendar you will be prompted to create a new account.


Once you access Google calendar at the left had side you can see few link and month view of a calendar. In addition to that there will be a form to switch between calendars of you have many. In the main body of the web page there will be time slots. You can select different time slots using the tabs displayed at the top right. At the upper top right corner you can locate the link to access Settings.


Before you use the Google calendar you should configure it according to your requirement. For that you should go to settings page. You can access setting using the link at the top right corner of the web page.


In here you can control the general behavior of the calendar. It’s important to select the country and the time zone correctly. In addition to that you control select time format, date format and many more parameters.


In here you can create many instances of Google calendar. This will be useful when you sharing calendars with many different groups.

Mobile Setup

This is the most interesting and important feature in the Google Calendar. In here you can configure your mobile phone with Google Calendar. After that you can receive SMS notification for the events you are going add. Once you add your mobile phone number in here it will send a verification SMS with a code. There is a text field to enter verification code. Once you enter that you are ready to receive SMS notification for free.


In the labs section there are many components and add-ons develop my 3rd parties to improve the service of Google calendar. These components may contain bugs, so use with due care.

Start using Google Calendar

Create Event

There are many ways to create event in Google calendar. The easiest way is click on a specific time slot. In the pop-up a window you can add further details and add event. Or you can click on the “Create event” link at the left top corner of the page. There is another interesting way to add event which is “Quick add”. Once you click the quick add link at the left top corner of the page you can simple type the details of event in simple English. It will automatically add the event to your calendar.


When you create an event there is a option panel. There you can add a reminder to the event. Te reminder can be E mail, pop up or SMS. The option of SMS would only appear only if you have configured your phone with this.


There is another option panel to add guest to the event you are going to create. When you add a guest you can select the privileges given to him. You can add guests from your Gmail contact list too.

More About Google Calendar

Google calendar is a real live example to prove the power of rich internet applications. Previously we used calendar comes with mail client applications to manage our events or may be some other installed event management software. With this powerful web application we can do all the above work by simply looking up a URL in the web browser. The main problem with this kind of rich internet applications is you cannot do anything when there is no internet connection. But Google developers have come up with a smart solution for this with Google Gear. If you have installed Google Gear on your PC you can click on the Offline link at the top right corner. Then it will store important data locally on your PC to run Google Calendar even when there is no internet connection. You can Sync your data periodically. In addition to that Google calendar supports variety of mobile devices including iPhone and Nokia S60.

Next possible development in Google calendar will be integration with G mail. Normally we use calendar software with our mail client. But so far I didn’t notice such a feature with Google calendar. Furthermore Google developers can integrate this will Google Docs as well.

This web application will help you to manage your all the events in your busy life.


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See Also

Blu-ray Disc

Blu-ray disk was introduced as a replacement for traditional DVD. It’s underlying technology is optical storage which is  as same as CD/DVD and it’s main usage is storing high definition videos, Play Station 3 games, and other data up to 50 GB. Blu-ray disc allows around 10 times more data storage as it uses a 400nm blu-violet laser wavelength while a standard DVD uses a 650nm red laser. With single layer, it can store up to 25 GB and with dual layer, it can store up to 50 GB. These are the standard Blu-ray drives’ storage. Now 200 GB discs are available, and 100GB discs are readable without extra equipment or modified firmware. It has the same physical dimension as standard DVDs and CDs.


The Blu-ray Disc Association developed Blu-ray disc. The first Blu-ray disc prototype was unveiled at the CEATEC exhibition as DVR Blue in October 2000. On February 19, 2002, the project was officially announced as “Blu-ray”. On October 4, 2004 the 20th Century Fox joined hands with BDA’s Board of Directors. The first BD-ROM players were shipped in mid-June 2006. The first movie released in Blu-ray is 2003’s Charlie’s Angels:Full Throttle. This release used the standard DVDs MPEG-2 compression method.

The Technology

Laser and Optics

To read and write data the Blu-ray disc uses a blue or violet laser, which is operating at a wavelength of 405nm. The diodes are InGaN (Indium Gallium Nitride) lasers that produce 405 nm photons directly, that is, without frequency doubling or other nonlinear optical mechanisms. Conventional DVDs and CDs use red and near-infrared lasers, at 650 nm and 780 nm, respectively. The blue-violet laser’s shorter wavelength makes it possible to store more information on a 12 cm CD/DVD-size disc. The minimum “spot size” on which a laser can be focused is limited by diffraction, and depends on the wavelength of the light and the numerical aperture of the lens used to focus it. By decreasing the wavelength, increasing the numerical aperture from 0.60 to 0.85, and making the cover layer thinner to avoid unwanted optical effects, the laser beam can be focused to a smaller spot. This allows more information to be stored in the same area. For Blu-ray Disc, the spot size is 580 nm. Blu-ray Discs feature improvements in data encoding that further increase the capacity.


To avoid the scratches, the Blu-ray disc has scratch-protection coating names Durabis.

Blu-ray with Java

The Java platform for Blu-ray players is called BD-J, which is based on JavaME Personal Basis Profile (PBP) v 1.1. It contains the additional APIs such as JavaTV and special Blu-ray API. In addition, it is based on a subset of JavaSE 1.4.2, so it uses the standard JVM. This includes Vector graphics, network support and file system access etc. The network connectivity is mandatory for Blu-ray profile 2 with support of TCP/IP and HTTP. For security, the secure connection contains the Java Socket Extension. A Blu-ray play can contain flash disks, a hard-disc or a USB port for extra memory. The file system classes allow accessing the file systems.

The BD-J platform uses AWT for its Graphical User Interface (GUI) with support of a remote control navigation. The Java Media Framework (JMF) is used for playback of the content on the disc. With the Java sandbox security, the user only allowed to access the disc publisher allowed servers. The main reason for incorporating Java in Blu-ray players it to get better possibilities when creating menus, in contrast to DVD players which use a simple MPEG based technology. Another basic feature is the possibility to add interactivity while playing the movie.

The Blu-ray Profiles

Each Blu-ray player must adhere to a specific profile. This specifies such things as the memory requirement. All profile with video requires a full BD-J implementation. This is a short summary of the current profiles:

  • 1.0 – This is the profile that is used today. It requires that the player has at least 64 KB persistent memory.
  • 1.1 – This becomes mandatory on all players that are manufactured after November 2007. The memory requirement is increased to 256 MB. The players must have a secondary video decoder and a secondary audio decoder. The secondary video decoder is used for picture in picture, whereas the secondary audio could be used for audio commentary etc.
  • 2.0 – This is called BD-Live and this requires the player to have network connectivity. The memory requirements are set to at least 1 GB. The memory is not limited to built-in memory, but could also be an external memory, such as an USB memory stick.
  • 3.0 – This is an audio only profile. This does not require BD-J.

The Blu-ray with Java platform can bring a new revolution in the field of movie publishing. We can expect our favorite movies with a very good quality in near future.


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What Is Cloud Computing?

Cloud computing is a distributed technology which delivers hosted services over the internet to provide easy access to IT services. These services are very flexible. A user can obtain a little or a big part of the service which is managed by the service provider.


There are two types of clouds available: Public cloud and Private cloud. A public cloud can be accessed by anyone on the internet but the private cloud is accessible only for the limited number of users. When creating the private cloud using public cloud resources, it is called virtual private cloud.

Software-as-a-Service (SaaS)

This type of service allows thousands of users to access a single application through the browser or some kind of front end portal using multi-tenant architecture where a single instance of software runs on a server, serving thousands of customers. It’s a profitable system for customers, where there’s no need for investing in servers and software licenses. In the service providers’ point of view, its just one application to maintain, so maintenance costs are very low. SaaS is commonly used on HR applications. But, it can be anything from web based email services to inventory control systems.

Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS)

This is a variation of a SaaS. It provides a development environment for developers to create applications on the platform over the internet using development tools hosted on the service provider’s platform. Usage of this service is not totally convenient to developers, as the development tools are limited to vendor’s architecture. But they can achieve  predictability and pre-integration.

Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS)

This type of services provides virtual server instances with a unique IP address and storage. Users can access the server using the service provider’s API to start, stop and configure the server. In the enterprise, cloud computing allows a company to pay for only as much capacity as is needed, yet purchase more capacity whenever required.

Web Services In The Cloud

Rather than delivering the whole application, this system offer web services APIs to developers to develop services over the internet. They’re available as discrete business services to the total APIs offered by Google Maps, ADP Payroll Process, the US Postal Service and Bloomberg.

Managed Service Providers (MSP)

A managed service is an application exposed to IT rather than to end-users. These service providers provide infrastructure management services such as network-based services, applications and equipment to enterprises on subscription basis. In addition to these services, the MSP can manage and integrate a range of enterprise networks associated activities including Web hosting, Virtual Private Network (VPN), unified messaging, video networking etc.

Commerce Services Platform

Commerce Services Platform enables service providers and software companies to become solution providers, as this is a hybrid of SaaS and MSP. They’re most common in trading environments, such as expense management systems, that allow users to order travel or secretarial services from a common platform that then coordinates the service delivery and pricing within the specification set by the user.

Internet Integration

The integration of cloud-based services is in its early days. OpSource, which mainly concerns itself with serving as SaaS providers, recently introduced the OpSource Services Bus, which employs in-the-cloud integration technology from a little startup called Boomi. SaaS provider Workday recently acquired another player in this space, CapeClear, an ESB (enterprise service bus) provider that was edging toward b-to-b integration.

Future Of Cloud Computing

In future, for the security purposes, the large enterprises can be building their own private clouds and the cloud computing service providers will support information security as well. The enterprises will become part time cloud-computing vendors and you need only the browser as a development tool. Game Servers will be the most interesting cloud computing in future.


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Dropbox – Backup and Share Files

Dropbox is an online file backup and sharing system which is providing similar functionality as a SVN server, but with very simple and user-friendly design. So that even a General user can use this software and he don’t even have to bother that there is a file backing up system running on his PC. All the activities will be handles by the Dropbox behind the screen. Furthermore this can be used as a tool to share your files with your friends in a highly secured way. In addition to that it provides a service to share your files publicly and share them as an online photo gallery.

Getting Started

Before you start the Dropbox service you have to install the PC software which is provided by them. You can follow this link to download it. Once you download and install the Dropbox software it will create a folder name “My Dropbox” in you’re my documents folder. Before you start using the service you must create a Dropbox account and it’s a part of the installation process. Then all you have to do it move your important files to “My Dropbox” folder. All the files there will be copied to your Dropbox account space. Furthermore all the changes you will make to the files inside the “My Dropbox” folder will be updated to your Dropbox account space. Those files will be saved in your Dropbox space in the case you need a backup. The total process is automated and you don’t have to bother. You can treat the “My Dropbox” folder as any other local folder in your computer.

There are two pre created folders inside you’re my Dropbox folder. You can use these folders to share your files easily. When you put a file in the Public folder, it will create a URL for the specific file. So that can be share with any one even outside the Dropbox. Once you put your some images in the Photos folder, it will create a online photo album. You can create your own folder in side and that will be the name of the Album.

Options For Users

PC Software

Dropbox PC software provides the file backup and sharing service on a personal computer. Once you install it on your PC it will create folder locally and synchronize it with the web copy of files. To indicate the Dropbox is running there will be an icon in system tray and that icon will display the state of the system. From that icon you can access preferences and in there you can do changes to the application including My Dropbox folder location.When you go and right click on a folder My Dropbox there will be a sub menu related to Dropbox functions including sharing and show delete files. And by double clicking on the system tray icon you can open you’re my Dropbox folder.

Mobile Software

There is a free iPhone application is provided to interact with Dropbox. In there is doesn’t keep a local copy of files but give a listing. By clicking on a file we can open it. In addition to that, like in the PC application there is the facility to share a folder and the content of the folder will be automatically synchronized with the web copy of files.There are some special features in iPhone Dropbox application. In there you can take a picture or record a video and put it directly in a Dropbox folder. After that you can share it with your friends. For that you can use Public and Photos folders as well.

Web Interface

The web interface provided is having most updated and comprehensive features. In there you can manage the web copy of the files. It’s given the facility to upload, download, create new folder and share files inside that. Furthermore there is an option to download a whole folder as a ZIP file.At the top navigation bar there are links to display recent activities and shared item status. If you click on the show deleted files it will display the files you deleted recently and yet you can undelete. This is a really a important feature. Using this you can recover a file you delete from your PC which was in you My Dropbox folder. You can see the undelete link in the drop down menu in the specific deleted file or folder.

Portable Version

There is a portable version of Dropbox and its provided by the Dropbox community. Using that software you can have a copy of My Dropbox folder in your portable data storage device, like your USB pen drive. You can download Dropbox Portable here. When you start it for the first time closely follow the instruction given by the installation process. Once you successfully set it up in your USB drive, you can have a copy of Dropbox files in there which is synchronized with the web copy.


Backup Space and Synchronizing

Dropbox Is going you 2GB of space and you can upgrade it up to 5GB by introducing new people. You will get extra 250MB per head up to 5GB. If you need further space you can purchase it. And the My Dropbox folder will be automatically synchronized to the web folder as a background process. It’s looking for changes that the user going to do for files and once you do some changes it updates it in the web folder. In this process latest edited version will always get the priority. For a general user, he doesn’t have to bother about anything, but work in My Dropbox folder like in any other local folder. It appears to be Dropbox is using some compression to transfer files over the internet and it will save your bandwidth. When you move files in your local folder, it won’t be re uploaded to save bandwidth. In addition to that like in any other SVN server you can recover the previous versions of the files (Sub versioning) and undelete the recently deleted files.

Sharing and Security

And Dropbox provide advance collaboration features. You can share a folder with a give a person and all the parties who share it can have a copy of file and Dropbox will synchronize it. In addition to that there are predefined folders to share files easily named Photos and Public. Using that you can have online photo albums and public links to your online files. And it uses SSL to transfer files and advance encryption when they save it in the web folder to ensure maximum security.


Dropbox follow few steps when it synchronizes files.

  • Upload all the files in the local folder to the web folder.
  • Make an index of all the files and save it locally and in web folder as well.
  • Continuously compare the file index in web folder and local folder.
  • Use compression and encryption to save bandwidth and ensure security.
  • If there are any changes in index update the latest edited files in all the copies.
  • Save copy of deleted files and previous versions in the web folder for recovery purpose.

This technology seems simple but the outcome is outstanding. This is the general functionality in the entire SVN servers, but Dropbox has made it easy to all the general users.

Future Of Dropbox

I have identified some problems in Dropbox system. The main drawback is there is no way to put folders which are on different location on the hard drive in to the Dropbox. In that case I have to move all of them to the My Dropbox folder. Its better if the user can add folders to Dropbox which are in different location in Hard drive by right click on them and “Add to dropbox”.  And in the PC software there is no way to accept the Sharing invitation. For that user must go to web interface of follow the link in the mail notification. When someone shares a folder, there is no way to limit the privileges. All the shared parties can make changes to the files in the folder. I wish if there was a feature to control sharing and editing privileges. In addition to that there is no way to restrict accessing an album in the photos folders. Basically any one can access it. There must be a way to share an online photo album with specific person or group. And it’s better to introduce a compression to transfer files or improve the current compression. I hope Dropbox development team will be concern about above issue in their future development.