I might have written more than 5-6 travelogues over social media and blog, but the one particular blog post which might have given most comments, calls, emails, was Delhi to Manali trip. Even when it wasn’t a satisfying one considering the fact that we skipped Solang Valley, didn’t spend much time over Rohtang and didn’t even stopped for Kullu or Naggar Castle. This must give you an idea that how much Delhi wishes to conquer upon those Himalaya hills in comparison to nearby destinations like Nainital, Mussoorie etc. but the distance of 600km+ deters majority of them as skeptics.
Answered a number of queries on the particular Manali trip from 2014 to readers, while I was asking from self that when I am gonna makeup for the mistakes of last trip by driving the same destination yet again. There were four hill trips in last year, but this particular year 2015 wasn’t going very lucky about that. I did took a small trip to Rishikesh, but that was nowhere close to be even counted properly in hill trips. So, there was on hill trip on the card before July starts (got shifted to end of July later on) and brings along wife’s job, my job and kiddo’s school etc..
Technology moves with a rapid pace, 5 years in IT field is enough to change a lot of things.
Five years back, when I wrote a post on Zabbix Implementation, then there weren’t many books on the topic and forums or posts like mine were the kind of only ways forward for getting help on issues related to zabbix. Then in March 2010, possibly one of the few excellent books on Zabbix was introduced to me. Fast forward to 2015 and now we have many of them. I came across two of them in recent.
While the first one covers in details about how to go around setting up a Distributed Zabbix Monitoring solution for your enterprise and various options available for the same, the second book focuses on basics to start from a scratch, covering things from definition level to make it easy for a new comer. Both the books do a great job considering the short page count because admit it, despite of our curiosity to learn new things, the kind of life we IT guys live, it doesn’t leave much of the room for reading lengthy books.
Seeing many views on it from both the sides of fence in expected and unexpected lines on this matter and trust me majority of them are not making proper sense. As happens with most of the issues, right wing, left wing and liberal debates make a mess of real issue and politics removes the chance of clarity on any matter even if facts might be out in public domain. Logic, reasoning, technicalities and legalities of the issues often go for toss, leaving just a noise behind without letting people learn any lesson.
I don’t really blame people considering the fact that most of these issues are emotional and rather than Manmohan style silence which nation seen since last decades, its better to have the noise and opinions than having none. Especially important when finally the time has come when Govts are responding to issues raised by such noises in real time, right or wrong, proportionate or disproportionate, that’s secondary, at least a mechanism is there and it does work. Pitfalls, cons of the mechanism are there and would be improved by own pace over time or may be not but that’s still better than having no mechanism at all.
But let’s leave individual biases, emotions aside, let’s talk what really has happened in this case and what the matter is all about and where everyone stands. (Unfortunately I lost the draft for this post at least twice so I might miss some of the points, which came to my instantly after going through entire case)
I wrote a number of travelogues in recent past but when my good friend Abdul Wadood Khan told me that he is planning a trip to Jaipur then the same reminded me of the fact that despite of being my first ever highway drive, I never really wrote about my trip to Jaipur. May be the reason that it was just one day experiment kind of affair and didn’t had ended perfectly sort of.. but still being the first drive, it deserved a write-up and here I am….
Its been roughly nine months since I bought the car or could say started driving the car. Only those who remember that how they learned the driving could understand that how that process feels. Mine? I kind of documented that in a way that I can keep in memory…
Anyway… that was just to give the idea that despite of city driving for almost nine months, I wasn’t feeling quite a pro till the moment, I hit a full length highway and for that I had to wait for my newborn kiddo (August 31, 2012) to get back from his mother’s place. But that wasn’t only variable to be considered for the first highway drive of mine, I had to choose a destination with good roads from Delhi and also moderate traffic. You know, I wasn’t very confident about the messy traffucked drives.
Trust me, it still wasn’t a planned trip otherwise there were so many things which I might have planned or checked for, like I did in Manali trip later on, but things happen in the way they are bound to happen and suddenly one late night, I decided that we would be driving to Jaipur tomorrow. Little to plan for, little to pack for .. even the kiddo was on milk only so not much on that account either. Leave other things, I didn’t even slept whole night as the plan was to leave home early, only to know at the end that how foolish that was.
The year 2014 been a very eventful year for me on more than one notes, be it personal or professional or anything else. Apart from other things, this was the year when I started loving Hill drives from being hesitant about them till now. It was just January 25, 2014 when I drove on hills for the first time ever and after back to back drives to Manali and Nainital, I decided to end the year with an almost unplanned but longest trip to Mussoorie itself.
The clock had completed full circle considering the fact that I had visited Mussoorie already and yet was choosing the same destination before even one year. Last time, I almost missed snow as snowfall happened 3 days before I reached there and then I had no guts to drive toward Dhanaulti and even this time, first snowfall of season had happened on December 15, 2014 and there were very little signs of next snowfall even during last week of year. There wasn’t much incentive for travelling back to same destination once visited apart from the fact that it was low rush period and also in last trip, I hardly seen anything else apart from Kempty falls and Robber’s cave.
Nokia Lumia 730, Lumia 830 Pureview and Flagship Lumia 930 Pureview Launched to enlighten your Diwali
October 1, 2014, Nokia India launched three new Lumia’s to Indian market which would be available for purchase post October 15, 2014. Nokia Lumia 730 for affordable smartphone category at a price point of 15,299/-, Nokia Lumia 830 with a Carl Zeiss Pureview camera at a price point of 28, 000/- around and flagship Nokia Lumia 930 Pureview with metallic bezel at price point of 38,000/- around which would be available later.
With flood of phones in the market on almost weekly basis, it’s getting hard to differentiate for a brand. Brands have to re-think each time that which features they need to highlight for selling the new range of phones. This time, Nokia has branded their affordable Nokia Lumia 730 as Selfie phone.
Photography has came a long way ahead since the time when Nokia introduced the first camera phone to the world. The kind of challenges and requirements with camera phones kept on changing over time and so were the phone.
First it was about having easy access to a camera which is always with you to take a snap than dedicated camera, then the challenge moved ahead to compete with digital cameras and focus moved to quality of pictures along with the ease of use, then we moved ahead to cope with DSLR Cameras along with ease of use. At many occasions, people find that its good to use a smartphone to take pictures than a dedicated camera or DSLR considering the ease of use, easy to snap, easy to edit on the go and easy to share with the dedicated connectivity. What else one would be need from a photography solution?
But soon the next generations found the answer for “what else?” and the answer was “Selfie”. This always been a common complaint of many who love taking snaps that at the end of day, they find that though they might have taken thousands of snaps in a day, there are a few pictures in those including themselves as it’s not that convenient to give your phone to others and asking them to take the perfect pictures like you or of your choice. So answer was, why not take pictures of self? The use case became mainstream with usable resolution front cameras which started coming with new age smartphones as timer option was just not cutting it and taking a snap via back camera by guess work wasn’t giving perfect results every time.
Capable wide angle camera means one can take snaps of self and even of a big group including himself in it.
Nokia Lumia 730 : Polycarbonate Unibody build carries the legacy
Its hard to keep a differentiator about your phones when it comes to build due to rush of similar looking phones in the market and one should give full credit to Lumia series that they kept their designs unique through entire range. Not only design but material and durability also to go along.
Even though it might be at a lower price point with similar kind of base specs as Moto G next gen might have but the dual SIM offering of Nokia at affordable smartphone segment doesn’t looses its punch with 720p 4.7” CBD display along with ultrathin Corning Gorilla Glass 3. The camera might be of 6.7MP, but it Carl Zeiss optics which been known for being kind of best out there. While front and back both cameras can record at 1080p resolution, the battery at 2200mAh promises 22h of talktime and 600h of standby time.
Sure enough punches for the price point for the users which are not dedicatedly Android.
Nokia Lumia 830 : The first Pureview Phone without the camera bump
Even though the original Pureview definition of having a Super pixel created by heavy resolution camera compressed to few has changed over time, Pureview still stands for Carl Zeiss and quality pictures with it even though it wasn’t able to make phones very slimmer. Not any more.
Nokia Lumia 830 is just 8.5mm thick phone with 5” 720p IPS LCD screen weighing just 150g.. apparently the thinnest and lightest Lumia till date. A polycarbonate back along with metallic bezel for a phone which not only takes great night, low light pictures but also takes great wide angle selfies with 28mm front camera of 5MP capability.
The other differentiator with the phone was “Live Images”, which is a term for Nokia’s answer to HTC’s “zoe”. A photo which keeps moments in it like videos. I don’t really know how the describe it other way around.
If something was awkward with the phone then it would be the back cover which facilitates Wireless charging and all while made of polycarbonate material, it remains a pain in ass in case one needs to remove it for accessing battery/ storage / SIM etc.
The speaker continues to remain on the backside and single.
The no-bump Pureview camera on the back. The new about the camera is introduction of 3-Microphone system which claims to record true 5.1 Surround sound.
When it comes to Lumia series then apart from Windows Phone OS, the other differentiators are services, which Microsoft trying to push towards the end of spectrum till the lowest price points and the big step towards that this time is introductory offer of 1Tb Cloud Storage for six months and then on a cost of Rs150/- per month later on. The same cloud storage supposed to be available with any the new phones from now on.
This is definitely a Lumia which I would like to talk about more when it pays me a longer visit.
Nokia Lumia 930 : The flagship Pureview smartphone of Nokia talking metal
This was a surprise launch which wasn’t given hint about before the launch. The highest priced phone of the spectrum comes with the topmost of specs in entire range along with metallic build quality (reminding of iPhone 4S like bezel).
The specs include:
- Quad-core 2.2 GHz Krait 400, Qualcomm MSM8974 Snapdragon 800, Adreno 330, LTE CAT4 Support
- 137 x 71 x 9.8 mm, 167g
- A 1080p 5” display competing the best of displays in the market with ~441 ppi pixel density, which is CBD AMOLED along with Corning Gorilla Glass 3.
- Dolby Digital Plus Surround Sound
- 20 MP Carl Zeiss Optics with Dual LED Pureview Camera with Optical Image Stabilization. 1.2 MP front camera @720p though.
- Wireless Charging Plate DT-900 included in retail package
I didn’t had much hands on over the phone, so can’t say more..
Issue with travel bug & middle class is, its not easy to balance the expenses that easily to manage multiple journeys at short durations but this time I was to make an exception. Its not been long to the journey to Manali and I was already itching to another journey to hills.
Month of August since last many years been unique to set continuous holidays for professionals and usually the time when its hard to avoid the temptation to go out. I guess half of Delhi goes empty from professional considering the number of options around Delhi to go out. This years these been four days means it was hard to sit back home.
Before buying car in 2012, my first long car journey to any tourist destination was Nainital only with Sister-In-Law & her husband & daughter. That was the first time when I experienced the fun of travelling long distances in car & being on your own to decide the schedule than being dependent on Trains etc. In that impromptu journey, we didn’t even had hotels booked in advance despite of being aware of unprecedented rush. Those rains many waterfall at every 10km distance in hills, thrill of greenery all around & top of that I wasn’t on driving seat either .
That time, Pankaj (Sister-In-Law’s Husband, couldn’t find English word for the relation yet) was superman driving through those twists & turns and Hyundai i10 best suitable car to our need for such tours as I was coming from driving bike for last full decade. During the majority of journey, I kept on thinking that when would I be able to drive in hills this way confidently.
Later on, after buying own car, I gradually raised the bar by first to Jaipur from Faridabad, then Mussorie from Faridabad and last Manali from Delhi but those imprints of driving in Nainital Hills during Monsoon refused to die down. It was the time to take the challenge heads on, by choosing exactly the same time, same season, to drive to Nainital from the same place, only missing variable was absence of partners in crime and we had to go for the journey alone means me, wife and kiddo. Same time it was customary to write about the experiences of the last journey before overwriting them in coming weeks, so I finished the post about Nainital journey 2011 based on photos and memories available of that time in my mind.