Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The ABC of a Girls PC

Disclaimer: Girls who are PC savvy may find this post offensive. Therefore you are advised to read this post and feel ashamed for not helping your PC challenged sisters.

Recently a blogger has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. He had merely linked a story about an Institute in his blog and for his troubles was sent a ‘notarized email” by the Institute. Now I think this is as good as sending a mail with a lawyer as an attachment! Now.... e-mails with viruses, adware, Trojan etc I don’t mind, but a lawyer? Imagine a lawyer running lose in a gals PC like mine! Gawd!!!! My deep dark secrets will be exposed to the world. My huge collection of jpeg images of....... puppies, kittens, flowers, teddy bears, little red hearts etc. etc. will become public knowlegde and I will become the laughing stock of the world ( read guys). On the flipside I will be the envy of all the gals, who will promptly flock to my PC to see if there are images that they can take and add to their collection. This dark underbelly of my PC is a folder called “ My Pictures” located within My Documents. No amount of therapy could cure me of collecting more and more of these pictures. (Now that I have confessed this deep dark secret I feel much better whew!!!) Now you guys must understand, we gals have our needs too, and no amount of cuddly sacharine sweet images will satisfy our craving to go awwwwwwwwwwww.

Even our PCs are very different from a guy's PC. For starters, we will have roses, teddy bears, little ones of animals and not so little ones of humans like Brad Pitt , Ashton Kuchner, Irfan Pathan etc as our Desktop background. However our Desktop is a Niagara Falls of Icons drowning out the background image.

Our PCs will remind us patiently at regular intervals that there are too many unused icons on the Desktop, which we ignore as we are genetically predisposed to ignoring anything that pops up on our Monitor. Our Microsoft Outlook will however have numerous reminders popping up at regular intervals reminding us about sales in various Malls, stylist’s appointment, changing nail polish, bill payments, Novenas etc.etc. For convent-educated gals (of any community), saying a Novena* is a must.( *a nine day prayer which if said without fail for nine consecutive days will yield a lot of hot air). Gals have Novenas for everything like:

1.Retrieving lost items especially email passwords ( I swear by this one)

2.A break up between John Abraham and Bipasha Basu

3.Getting a good boyfriend who will immediately propose (definition of ‘good’ unknown to this writer)

4.Getting a good boyfriend who will NOT propose etc.

We are notoriously bad at running Virus Scans inspite of the reminder window that frequently pops up after the due date. For PCs used by gals, Norton Anti Virus has a special feminine Edition in the pipeline. It comes with numerous power packed features like a reminder that the PC is due for a Virus Scan and then, actually going ahead with the scan anticipating that we will close the reminder window. It will, then catch the virus, worm, trojan and dangle it in front of our eyes on the monitor, forcing us to recoil in horror. Another feature is, numerous cockroaches that will crawl in the monitor as a reminder that a scan is overdue. Nothing like visual suggestion to drive home the point. Apparently this edition has an inbuilt thingie which enables it to detect that the user is female. For example:

1.Only a girl will use her PC running in Safe Mode.

2.Only a gal will push a warning from Anti Virus that there is a dangerous virus in the system to one side ( because the window can't be closed) and continue working.

3.Gals don’t like Quick Launch, they prefer everything on Desktop

4.And since there are too many confusing Icons on the Desktop we prefer to use the Programs Menu anyway.

5.Outlook Express will have additional stationery options with little hearts, bows, roses…..guess you get the gist by now.

6.The monitor will be festooned with colorful ribbons, little teddy bears and dried flowers stuck with tape. And the keyboard will have colorful stickers looking like sores all over.

7.We have never been to C and D Drive and do not know of its existence.

Anyways a recent incident led to a sea change in my attitude towards my PC and Laptop. I now swear by frequent virus scans. It all started with this innocent incident at a meeting after a presentation on my Laptop.

Boss: Ok guys! We have to strategise this quarters Brand Promotions activities.
A pop up window pops up from my Laptop with this message: Looking for Brand Promoters? Your search ends here. Contact ABC Brand Consultants.

(My hand reaches mechanically with years of experience of closing Pop Up Windows and I close the window without blinking an eyelid.)

Boss: So what are the Events that we plan to do as a follow up to the promotional activities?
Popup Window: For Promotions and Event Management contact Best Events!

Boss: ahem... silverine, have you cleaned your machine lately?
Popup Window: Clean your PC today. FREE adware scanner , download NOW, Click Here.

Me: huh! Why do I need to clean my machine?
Boss: Well... there is an awful lot of popups in your machine.
Popup Window: Free POP UP BLOCKER, click here

Me: (closing the window automatically) Where????
Popup Window: Your search ends here. Find Everything at where.com.Try The Hottest New Search Engine

Colleague No 1: Please run the Norton Anti Virus from time to time.
Popup Window: Get professional antivirus software and advice - protect your pc. Click Here

Colleague No3 to Colleague No 5: I think I am coming down with the flu.
Popup Window: Cold and Flu Treatments. Click here for your Guide to Herbs & Vitamins Proven To Prevent, Relieve, Speed Recovery

Colleague No 4 to me : (whispering) “Hey there is a sale at Metro Shoes today, Lets scoot from office early today ok? “
Popup Window: Shoes: Buy It Cheap On eBay, Low Prices, New and Used

Boss: ahem girls…lets return to the topic of discussion shall we?
Popup Window: The Key to Choosing the Right Topic for Discussions - Tips and Advice from Bright institute.

Boss: For Gods Sake!!!! Somebody shut down that laptop !!!!
Popup Window: Searching for God??? God wants you to seek a close relationship with Him at holyblessings.org

My lappie and me have since then been grounded. *sniff*

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Things people type on search engines!

I recently installed a Stat Counter in my blog. I was amazed to see that my blog has recorded 1000 hits in 5 days!!! However my celebrations were cut short when I clicked on another feature that the Stat Counter offers.....”Key Word Activity” (KWA). It lists the key words people have entered in various search engines, which have led them to my blog due to these words being present in my blog or post titles. Here are some examples.

1. getting someones password for yahoo

(please, please pass me the details too)

2. unholy relationships

( now how does one enter into this kind of relationships? Date Lucifer?)

3. mallu brides

( you want mallu brides? hey, polygamy is a punishable offence in India !!!)

4. mallu aunty

( this has to be a mallu ungle! )

5. cooking guys

(if you find the recipe do send me a copy. ps. Lemme know how it turns out)

6. mallu gals

(I would recommend taking a train to Kerala)

7. susan aunty

( so.... susan aunty is lost in Cyberspace? )

8. chemical silverine

( wow they have named a chemical after me?!??! Or are they trying to eliminate me? brrr )

9. bangalore traffic police fining

( yeah, they are very ‘fining’ gentlemen, believe me )

10. mallu cooking

( now you want to see a mallu cooking or you want to learn kerala cuisine? )

11. fowl playing

( well, I have never seen ‘fowls’ playing too, please send me the link)

12. malu masala group

( mallu speaking masala's of the world unite! )

13. colds cure caffiene ( note the typo)

(so when you get a cold, you know what to do. cure Caffien of whatever ails him. )

From now on I will refrain from using words that bring such scum to my blog.
Oh no!! I just used the word ‘scum’ !!!!! I dread the creatures that will now come visiting :(

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

If you got IT, flaunt IT !

The IT COM ( now rechristened IT.IN ) will soon be upon us and I remember the very first such event I attended in Bangalore a couple of weeks ago. Just a fresher in college, quite wet behind the years and to make things worse I was doing Internship for an IT company! Now working for an IT company is great.....but during IT Com , I wish I could take a sabbatical, contract typhoid, Chicken Pox or whatever else it will take to keep me away from office during the run up to the event and for the duration of the event itself.

It is at this time of the year that most departmental heads suddenly get very creative and start dropping by my cubicle ‘oh-so-casually’, with ideas, suggestions and brilliant brainwaves that if implemented would definitely get us the “Most Grotesque Stall” award for the year 2005.

Consider this:

RK: Why don’t we have a waterfall and pool in the stall?
Me: Sure and I guess you want all of us to lounge around the pool in string bikinis too?

AN: I say we have thermocol cutouts of our products all around the stall.
Me: Sure and when a visitor wants a demo, I guess you will make the sputtering noises for that device?

SK: The testing team needs to be adequately represented at our stall!
Me: Ok, how about your entire team standing in the stall dressed as bug exterminators?

PP: Now Customer Support is a vital function and should be highlighted this year at our stall!!!
Me: Sure give me the list of all those customers you avoid and I will send them a personal invite.

And the suggestions never stop. Thank fully there is a centralized decision making team that makes the final decisions like how many passes each one of us will get and who gets to go around checking out the guys/gals at the other stalls, who gets to go for the free dinners and lunches and who gets to shred the resumes that pile up etc etc.

This is also that time of the year that my team and me are told, not to waste our time doing anything other than Exhibition work. By anything, I mean time wasting activities like breathing in, breathing out, blinking, eating, thinking, diggin nose/crotch ( whichever applicable), going home, sleeping etc.etc. In fact I am told that these qualities are very necessary to become a manager in my company. You should see my HR manager. He looks absolutely breathless all the time!!!! And my Big Boss looks positively blue in the face 24/7.

Now Resume collection and shredding is a vital function at all IT exhibitions. Resumes are collected with gusto by a pre selected person who looks as sincere as Dharam Singh promising to do something about Bangalore’s crumbling infrastructure. This person will take your resume like he is being handed the Bible/Gita/Koran and place it with reverence in a box. At the end of the day, each stall compares the number of resumes collected and the winning stall gets dirty looks and the losers prepare to look even more sincere the next day so that they could be the next winners. The collected resumes are then shredded to make way for the next day’s collection. So I request all employment seekers to exhibitions, especially freshers to please stick your resume with gum that is if it has more than one page. STAPLE PINS AND OTHER METAL PINS CAN DAMAGE PAPER SHREDDERS!!!! So please be careful.

Another vital function of people manning stalls is to answer important questions with aplomb! Check these scintillating conversations out.

Visitor: So you make software
Me: Well...yes....
Visitor: So, how many softwares do you make in a month?

Visitor No 2: So what do you make?
Me: We make Enterprise Solutions, Government solutions, Communication Network, other Products and Services......
Visitor No 2: Wokay, wokay thank you, where is the toilet?

Visitor No 3: So how much does your software cost?
Me: er....what line of business are you in sir?
Visitor No 3: I am a contractor
Me: So you undertake turnkey projects? In which case I would suggest you speak to.....
Visitor No 3: naah, I am a labour contractor.
Me: er... so what do you want to do with a software solution?
Visitor No.3: (shrugging) Oh nothing, chumma I asked.

And all this after you have prepared a good two months for the event and have stood for hours in the stall with every muscle in your body aching and screaming for rest.

I am so not looking forward to the coming IT.In :(