For the heck of it

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

E-passports to debut in the U.S. this December

The U.S. government is planning to begin issuing electronic passports to its citizens, which feature a built-in chip that contains information about the passport holder and facial-recognition capabilities. These electronic passports to be out by December this year will be initially issued only through the department. However, by October 2006 domestic passport agencies, such as local government offices and post offices, will also be able to provide them.

The new passport will look similar to the traditional type, but a smart-card chip will be embedded in the back page, that will make it slightly thicker. When swiped across an electronic reader, the chip in the passport wirelessly transmits data to a customs officer's computer screen. The electronic passport relies on radio frequency identification technology (RFID). If the chip is broken or malfunctions, the holder can still continue to use the passport as a non-electronic passport, and then buy a new one.

The chip embedded into the back cover of the passport will hold most of the information featured in today's passports, such as the passport holder's name, date of birth, gender, place of birth, dates of passport issuance and expiration, passport number and a an image of the passport holder. A digital signature will also be used to protect the stored data from alteration and mitigate against photo substitutions.

Read More Here

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Paradigm Shift... Nice Illustration

Imagine you're at London's Heathrow Airport. While you're waiting for your flight, you notice a kiosk selling shortbread cookies.You buy a box, put them in your traveling bag and then you patiently search for an available seat so you can sit down and enjoy your cookies. Finally you find a seat next to a gentleman. You reach down into your traveling bag and pull out your box of shortbread cookies.

As you do so, you notice that the gentleman starts watching you intensely. He stares as you open the box and his eyes follow your hand as you pick up the cookie and bring it to your mouth. Just then he reaches over and takes one of your cookies from the box, and eats it!

You're more than a little surprised at this. Actually, you're at a loss for words. Not only does he take one cookie, but he alternates with you. For every one cookie you take, he takes one. Now, what's your immediate impression of this guy?



He's got some nerve?!

Can you imagine the words you might use to describe this man to your associates back at the office?

Meanwhile, you both continue eating the cookies until there's just one left. To your surprise, the man reaches over and takes it. But then he does something unexpected. He breaks it in half, and gives half to you. After he's finished with his half he gets up, and without a word, he leaves.

You think to yourself, "Did this really happen?" You're left sitting there dumbfounded and still hungry. So you go back to the kiosk and buy another box of cookies. You then return to your seat and begin opening your new box of cookies when you glance down into your traveling bag. Sitting there in your bag is your original box of Cookies -- still unopened.

Only then do you realize that when you reached down earlier, you had reached into the other man's bag, and grabbed his box of cookies by mistake. Now what do you think of the man?



You've just experienced a profound paradigm shift. You're seeing things from a new point of view.

Is it time to change your point of view?

Now, think of this story as it relates to your life. Seeing things from a new point of view can be very enlightening. Think outside the box. Don't settle for the status quo. Be open to suggestions. Things may not be what they seem.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

British ministers call for ban on Zimbabwe cricket team!

Check it out here:

Well, the reason for banning one of the best cricket teams in the world, by the ministers is idiotic! How about banning Britain from international cricket due to racial discrimination??

The support for people in Zimbabwe suffering is commendable, but not at the cost of banning the cricket team from playing. If the authorities are so concerned, they should be directly dealing with the guy - Mr. Mugabe.

Also, racial discrimination doesnt only occur when you ridicule black people in an all-white country. It also occurs when due to something unfortunate that happened in a country, people like Ian Blair hastily ask their police personnel to target "suspicious-looking" people and shoot them point blank. And then they shoot an innocent guy just because he looked "Asian", spin a fiction around it, and when the truth is out, they say "Oh sorry, wrong guy by mistake". Will this sorry answer the anger and pain the family members of the slain person have gone through? No!!

So, the moral of the story: First take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbour's eye.

Britain needs to clean its own backyard, before complaining about weeds and trash in it's neighbour's backyard.