Monday, November 3, 2008

Ice alert row sank the Titanic

The Titanic disaster, that claimed over 1,500 lives 96 years back, could have been averted if its radio operator had not been rude,  a new documentary claims. According to the documentary, the 25-year-old radio operator, Jack Phillips, had a row with his counterpart on the nearest ship who tried to warn him of ice in the area on April 14, 1912. In fact, Phillips, who had a backlog of greeting messages to send for the luxury liner's passengers, told Cyril Evans of the SS California: "Shut up," The Sun reported. An angry Evans reacted by switching off his radio equipment just ten minutes before the Titanic hit an iceberg on her maiden voyage to New York. So SS California, just 20 miles away, didn't get the doomed ship's SOS and 1,523 people, including Phillips, died in the disaster early on 15 April 1912, the documentary to be aired in Channel 4 has claimed. The Titanic hit an iceberg during her maiden voyage on the night of 14 April 1912, and sank two hours and 40 minutes later. At the time of her launching, she was the largest passenger steamship in the world. The sinking of the Titanic, which used some of the most advanced technology available at the time, is considered the deadliest peacetime maritime disaster in history. 

Sunday, November 2, 2008

RBI cuts rates

In a major move to inject an additional estimated Rs. 85,000 crore into the system, the Reserve Bank of India on Saturday cut key deposit requirements for banks by one percentage point and its short-term lending rate by 0.5 percentage point,  a decision that may help soften general interest rates. The decisions to cut the cash Reserve Ratio by 100 basis points each and the repo rate by 50 basis points come a week after the busy season credit policy review by the RBI, in which it had given an assurance of more measures to boost economic growth. The RBI would continue to closely monitor development in global and domestic financial markets and take swift and effective action as appropriate. With the latest measures,  the RBI has pumped about Rs. 2.70 lakh crore into the system since October but industry leaders and bankers feel more is needed to effectively bring down the commercial lending rates.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

"Tell a Friend" Widget

As Advertisers and marketing people know their best efforts are nothing compared to satisfied customers spreading the message by word of mouth, about something they like. Pramati Technologies,  a Hyderabad - based Internet application developer, had created a website, Social Twist, adding a Twist to the way we use Internet sites. And to fuel this site, they are offering a free widget ( that is a small graphical interface users can manipulate) called "Tell a Friend". So often we come across interesting web pages or offers that we would like to share with people on our email list. These may be in different email services - or a part of our network of friends on Orkut or other social sites. It is a huge hassle to copy a page or link to friends who are thus dispersed - and this is what "Tell a friend" lets you do across instant email, email or social nets without straying away from your chosen site. It sounds complicated, but is really simple. The widget can be downloaded from Tell a Friend. A video clip explains how it works.

Kalam on Chandrayaan

Byalalu village near Bangalore had a high profile visitor on Saturday. The former President, A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, visited the Indian Deep Space Network and the giant antenna here and expressed his desire to see an Indian scientist land on the moon by 2021. "I would be 90 years old then, "he told a gathering of senior scientists. G.Madhavan Nair, chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) presented Mr. Kalam with a picture of the Earth taken by the Terrain Mapping Camera on board Chandrayaan - I from an altitude of 70,000 Km. Earlier in the day, speaking to reporters after launching an emergency response service in the city, Mr. Kalam said he believed that every Indian should be proud of the Chandrayaan-I, the country's first moon mission program taken up by ISRO. The images captured by the spacecraft were of high resolution and quality and therefore "an indicator of what it holds for the future ", he added. On November 8, when Chandrayaan leaves the Earth's gravity and enters the Moon's orbit, will be the next milestone for the mission, Mr. Kalam said.

National Cancer Institute in Chennai

An Rs.800 - crore National Cancer Institute will be setup in or around Chennai, Union Minister for Health and Family welfare Anbumani Ramadoss announced on Saturday. The State Government has been asked to provide 50 acres, he said. Research, education and treatment would be the thrust areas of the Institute.