Friday, October 21, 2011

Facebook smileys you wished to have forever

Emoticons and smileys are the key essence to online chatting and communication. It lets us express ourselves a lot better with them. Facebook till now doesn’t have a clear cut display as to the list of emoticons it supports. So for your information here is the list of emoticons that you can use right now while you chat in Facebook.

Shortcut Key
Shortcut Key
icon smile icon smile :] =)
icon razz icon razz :-p :p =p
icon biggrin icon biggrin =D
3:-) 3:)
8-| 8| 8-| B|
icon neutral ]
icon cool 8) B-) B)
:-* :*
O:) O:-)
>:( >:-(
icon wink icon wink
icon sad icon sad :[ =(
:/ :-/
o.O O.o
:-O :O
>:O >:-O

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Amazing Android App #1 - Gesture Search

Have you ever fantasized to search your contacts, applications, games, settings, and everything on your phone by just using 3-4 swings of your finger? Well, all of us have, and here is just the app which will make your fantasies come true. Look through any of the contents in our mobile to search using gesture search.

Click here to get this app. Stay tuned for the entire series of amazing android applications to empower your android mobile phone. ‘Like’ this page for more amazing android apps. Google’s mobile operating system has already taken the market by storm is sure enough to blind us from other operating systems with it’s array of open source apps and tools.

Android has evolved to such a level that even if you are not a techie, you will love its apps!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Bing bleeding millions, as Google remains at top

Microsoft’s Bing search engine has been one of the most recent disasters by any giant organization. Microsoft spent millions of dollars on it’s search engine, advertising it to the fullest potential it can. It integrated Bing search into Internet Explorer, but still, Google continued to firmly stay at the top. Guess why? 

Google has become a strong brand household name, and more than that, it’s a verb now! No amount of advertising bucks can beat that. You need years of solid performance to become a verb such as Google. And to topple Google, you not only need to consistently be at your supreme best, but also need to make immense sacrifices which Bing is making right now by bleeding millions. As of now, Microsoft has lost $5.5 billion on Bing since its 2009 inception.

It is already yet another failed experiment by Microsoft. Not that Google had been successful though in all their attempts (remember Buzz?). But such a loss in a massive scale as Microsoft is having currently is unheard of in recent times. But it’s always nice to see competition around, it gave Google a kickstart to revamp their own interfaces and designs. We Googlers love it now, don’t we!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Importance of Communication Skills in the global upfront

This is a guest post by Ashish Nandwani.

The need of effective and potent communication is becoming more and more cardinal in today's global arena, No doubt the companies spend a lot of  money on training individuals to make them presentable for cross cultural communication. Intercultural or cross-cultural communication substantially considers how to greet , manage and work together.  However  as sometimes wrongly perceived ,communication is  not only verbal but full of other factors like tone , body-language , gestures  and what not. One may say something but may not mean it so it's important to write and say what you believe in. As someone has rightly said ' Read is to write where listen is to speak' , Good writing skills can come with a lot of reading while one has to be a good listener in order to speak well. No one ever wants to come out of his / her comfort zone but' instinct also comes with experience ' as they say ( so better keep learning)

I remember attending a seminar on 'Requirement Analysis' and that embarked upon communication bridging different cultures. We were told that training was specifically given to say 'No' to employees working with foreign clients because we as Indians sometimes are inclined to reply in the affirmative even when the requirements can't be fulfilled.We were also told a humorous situation in which the foreign client nodded his head when he meant something else.. Thumbs up is considered vulgar in Argentina where as in French it says to be Okay. Non verbal communication comprises maximum of exchange of ideas between persons . As studies show , one is more likely to believe what he/she watches rather than what he/she listens. Learning such subtle responses and tones help you to earn respect even if you are not able to converse in the verbal form(Local language).

Good interpersonal skills , innovation will always lead to a better economy , better business for a company. Collocation , strategic decisions , responsibility are all complimentary to neat communication.One must be aware of the budding errors which occur in communication , One might say something but it may mean something else. Good orators enhance their skills using the right attitude , tone , respect and panache.Global communication requires sensitivity , subtlety and appreciation for one's culture. You should be clear and easy to understand , Many of my friends have an inherent feeling to speak quick and mean nothing.(In English). In every circular of job openings , must have good communication skills is something which is always present.Today's competitiveness in global upfront ensures that employers value communication skills more than the technical aspects ,The dexterity to mix with other people , the notion of being gregarious ,  the organization and the management of words at the right time gives an edge. I must confess , I hate articles and people who smell of bad grammar. If you are not sure , better don't try to be fancy but never make a mockery of the language. I have personally seen some of my friends fall down dramatically in a telephonic or face to face interviews only because they meant something but their words meant something else.

With the boom and advent of Internet , communication structure has taken a new turn , there is a different process altogether now for advertising and showing your presence. This demands apt use of words , images at the right place. Web is notching as something very powerful and you don't have a second chance to 'How you want to make your presence felt'. it can lead to reduction in costs , quality content , lot of traffic and thus a rise for the business. The more people a business can jump onto , better the sales , better the revenue. It's possible to get a pool of talent regardless of the geographical distances only because of better understanding , better knowledge , better attitude  in a way leading to better communication.Also known as 'cross cultural or interpersonal communication , Communication has the potential to make a significant contribution to an individual and an organization.

This post was written by Ashish Nandwani of Exuberance.

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Saturday, October 08, 2011

Engineering years - The ideal approach

This post was written by Ashish Nandwani of Exuberance.

This article is all about how to approach your engineering years henceforth my own experience. I was not able to get into a very good college , I would have thought . I found it very difficult to adjust and adapt to this new environment of college. Not to forget , The teachers were not even close to the one's I would have imagined (After I was able to meet some really good teachers while preparing for IIT's). First two years of college , I never thought I would ever become an engineer in some sense or credibility. Information Technology is Of-Course not only about programming , I knew I was definitely missing something , We always tended to waste most of the 'Lab periods'(Of 3 hours) , Making programmes always took less than 20 minutes.

Then came a transition , I was introduced to Java and I fell in love with it. I started reading e-books and blogs , followed some really good people on Twitter and was just entering into a whole new world of WEB. I must confess , I never liked reading text-books more often than not and would you-tube every time i came across something new in the class. I started enjoying this interaction. I must advice everyone in this phase to watch videos and study from if you are not able to understand or digest anything.

My juniors always ask me , 'Which language to do in the first training period and which in the second? ' I always reply them do anything but with full utilization of the WEB. I got interested in Java but someone else may develop a passion of Networking , Database ,Linux.And once you get into it , Don't move out , Learn , Invent , Innovate and enjoy.Live with it and get into it's core. There is no limit , Nothing. You may not always invent but you always learn when you try. Once you know one language , you will almost know everyone. For example if you have started with JAVA SE(standard edition) then you must go for JAVA EE (Enterprise edition) later on , No point in starting with .NET and then going to learn JAVA from a scratch or something like that.

Obviously you need to test all of your skills and the best way to do it is to participate in The Great Mind Challenge(TGMC) organized by IBM every year.( This is something ,I will be proud of whole my life. You will never find a better competition than this.TGMC has been a great initiative taken by IBM to inculcate professionalism among students , Not just the technical aspect , Making an industry standard project can take you and your mind to a level! You will be only allowed to use IBM tools and thus it would remove each and every ignorance of yours regarding WEB. We did learn WEBSPHERE(An application Server) administration and Struts Framework , My friend used to make beautiful aesthetic designs and we both used to make the database which is the foremost requirement engineering step in making a project. For database you will have to use DB2. There are E-mentors you can hire for free (From IBM) to help tou start from a scratch and a DVD which includes all of their tools will also be sent to you on your request , You can also download them.We did feature in top 10 state teams of India, something I am very happy for. Not because of the destination but because of the journey.

One's interested in Web designing must join and read their book ' The principles of beautiful web design' for a start.(Everything should give that book a try).The book for Keithy Sierra for Java is the best I could find , I found it very humorous as well so that helps. Just don't believe in everything ot anything , If you are not able to digest it ,Help yourself with a quote , 'Either you know a thing or you know how to type google'. so Fetch that.

You will learn about the three layers of WEB and keeping them demarcated. HTML is only for content(not for designing , sometimes we tend to use <br> tag ) , Css is what you need to learn for designing and Javascript (for dynamic behavior). You should try Html 5.0 and Css 3.0 , Very vast and unbelievably awesome. We never knew a thing earlier but now we can get into any conversation regarding IT so it's the journey and the path you take.

Lastly I would also advise you to be as social as you can be . It will help you in one way or the other , Interact and gather. Never forget to give everything back to the society once you have learnt it , That's what i feel as my duty.


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Thursday, October 06, 2011

Steve Jobs - 10 things you did not know

Steve Jobs was an incredible genius and is one of my favorite icons in the technology world. It is his vision of innovation that has made Apple standout amongst the crowd which includes biggies like Google and Microsoft. As a tribute to his death yesterday, I would like to share 10 unusual things we never knew about Steve Jobs.

1) Nature versus Nurture. His sister is Mona Simpson but he didn’t know it until he was an adult. Her first novel, Anywhere but Here, was about her relationship with her parents. Which, ironically, was Steve Jobs parents. But since Steve Jobs was adopted (see below) they didn’t know they were brother-sister until the 90s when he tracked her down. It’s proof (to an extent) of the nature versus nurture argument. Two kids, without knowing they were brother and sister, both having a unique sensibility of life on this planet to become among the best artists in the world in completely different endeavors.

2) His father’s name is Abdulfattah Jandali. If you had to ask me what Steve Job’s father’s name was I never in one zillion years would’ve guessed that and that Steve Jobs biologically was half Syrian Muslim. For some reason I thought he was Jewish. His parents were two graduate students who I guess weren’t sure if they were ready for a kid so put him up for adoption and then a few years later had another kid (see above). So I didn’t know he was adopted. The one requirement his biological parents had was that he be adopted by two college educated people. But the couple that adopted him lied at first and turned out not to be college educated (the mom was not a high school graduate) so the deal almost fell through until they promised to send Steve to college. A promise they couldn’t keep (see below). So despite many layers of lies and promises broken, it all worked out in the end. People can save a lot of hassle by not having such high expectations and overly ambitious worries in the first place.

3) He made the game  “Breakout”. If there was one thing people loved almost as much as the games on the Apple II+ it was playing Breakout on the first-generation Atari (I can’t remember, was that the Atari 2600?) And then breakout on every version of the Blackberry since 2000. If he had never done anything else in life and I had met him and he said, “I’m the guy who made Breakout”, I would’ve said, “you are the greatest genius of the past 100 years.” Funny how things turn out. He went on from Atari to form Apple. Nolan Bushnell, founder of Atari, went to form the greatest restaurant chain in the history of mankind: Chuck E. Cheese.

4) He denied paternity on his first child, claiming he was sterile. The other had to initially raise the kid using welfare checks. I have no judgment on this at all. Raising kids is hard. And when you have a kid you feel like this enormous energy and creativity you have for the world is going to get misdirected into a … little baby (Jobs’ parents must’ve felt that way as well. Like father, like son). But people change, mature, grow up. Eventually Jobs became a good father. And that’s what counts in the end. Much worse if it was the reverse. I didn’t know this either: that the Lisa computer (the “Apple III”) was named after this first child.

5) He’s a pescetarian. In other words, he eats fish but no other meat. And he eats anything else a vegetarian eats (including eggs and dairy). Turns out if you compare pescetarians with regular meat-eaters they have a 34% less chance of dying of heart disease. And if you compare vegetarians with meat eaters, they only have a 20% less chance of dying of heart disease. I think from now on I’m going to be a pescetarian, just because Steve Jobs is one. Except when I’m in Argentina. In Argentina you have to eat steak. Ted Danson and Mary Tyler Moore consider themselves pescetarians. Somehow, even the world “pescetarian” seems like it was invented in California.

6) He doesn’t give any money to charity. And when he became Apple’s CEO he stopped all of their philanthropic programs. He said, “wait until we are profitable”. Now they are profitable, and sitting on $40bb cash, and still not corporate philanthropy. I actually think Jobs is probably the most charitable guy on the planet. Rather than focus on which mosquitoes to kill in Africa (Bill Gates is already focusing on that), Jobs has put his energy into massively improving quality of life with all of his inventions. People think that entrepreneurs have to some day “give back”. This is not true. They already gave at the office. Look at the entire ipod/Mac/iphone/Disney ecosystem and ask how many lives have benefited directly (because they’ve been hired) or indirectly (because they use the products to improve their quality of life). As far as I know, Jobs has never even commented about his thoughts on charity. Good for him. As one CEO of a (currently) Fortune 10 company once told me when I had my hand out for a charitable website,  “Screw charity!”

7) He lied to Steve Wozniak. When they made Breakout for Atari, Wozniak and Jobs were going to split the pay 50-50. Atari gave Jobs $5000 to do the job. He told Wozniak he got $700 so Wozniak took home $350. Again, no judgment. Young people do things. Show me someone who says he’s been honest from the day he was born and I’ll show you a liar. Its by making mistakes, having fights, finding out where your real boundaries in life are, that allow you to truly know where the boundaries are.

8) He’s a Zen Buddhist. He even thought about joining a monastery and becoming a monk. His guru, a Zen monk, married him and his wife. Trying to quiet the mind to deal with the onrush of non-stop pain that was trying to invade there. The interesting thing about Jobs being a a Zen Buddhist is that most people would think that serious Buddhism and being one of the wealthiest people in the world come into conflict with each other. Isn’t Buddhism about non-attachment? Didn’t Buddha himself leave his riches and family behind?

But the answer is “no." Its normal to pursue passions and outcomes, but just not to become overly attached to those outcomes. Being happy regardless of the outcome. A great story is the Zen master and his student walking by a river. A prostitute was there and needed to be carried over the river. The Zen master picked her up and carried her across the river and then put her down. Then the master and student kept walking. A few hours later the student was so agitated he finally had to ask, “Master, how could you touch and help that prostitute! That’s against what we believe in!” And the Master said, “I left her by the river. Why are you still carrying her?”

9) He didn’t go to college. I actually didn’t know this initially. Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg are the famous college graduates that I knew about. But apparently Steve Jobs went to Reed College for one semester and then dropped out.   guess you don’t need college to program computers, make computers, build businesses, make movies, manage people, etc.

10) Psychedelics. Steve Jobs used LSD at least once when he was younger. In fact, he said about the experience, it was “one of the two or three most important things I have done in my life.”  Apple’s slogan for many years was “Think Different”. Maybe using a drug which tore him from the normal frame of reference taught him how to look at problems from such a unique perspective. I don’t think LSD is for everyone, but when you combine it with the innate genius the man had, plus the many ups and downs that he experienced, plus the Zen Buddhism and all of the other things above, its quite possible it all adds up to the many inventions he’s been able to produce.

Steve Jobs’ story is filled with nuance and ambiguity. People study Steve Jobs by looking at his straightforward business successes. Yes, he started Apple in a garage. Yes, he started Pixar and almost went broke with it. Yes, he started and sold Next and he was fired as CEO of Apple, and blah blah blah. But none of that will ever explain the man behind the genius. None of that will explain all the products he invented that we use today. None of that will tell us about the ipad, Toy Story, the Mac Air, the Apple II+, etc. A man’s successes can be truly understood only if we can count his tears. And unfortunately in the case of Steve Jobs, that is one task that’s impossible.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

McKinsey vs Boston Consulting Group – Analysis

The two premium organizations in the consulting world, McKinsey and BCG, are the ultimate destination of many MBA graduates and experienced technical professionals from elite institutions. It is not easy at all when it comes to choosing between the two, but some well-investigated parameters if clearly thought of casts a lot of transparency on the comparison. And I am sure it will be a real help to my readers who urged me with hundreds of feedbacks to write this one after the Accenture vs McKinsey article..

Work Pressure

McKinsey is said to have a slightly more work pressure than it’s peers in this sector and you might just be travelling a touch more. But that being said, the prestige and satisfaction that comes with working in the best in the sector undoubtedly gives you that extra energy to carry on and go ahead with what you do best. With having a feather in the cap for working in the top firm, I don’t think it would make much of an issue.

Boston Consulting Group is a very close competitor, recruiting from nearly the same institutions as McKinsey and having a lot similar strategy and work culture. But work pressure and travelling might not seem apparently as much as McKinsey.

Advising on Technical Issues

One aspect where both McKinsey and the Boston Consulting Group have a close shave is their advising ability on technical issues. Both the firms have nearly the same amount of credibility when it comes to advising on strategic technical issues. They might not be the best bet in implementing them, but surely provides a solid platform to other IT firms to start working on. Hence with McKinsey or BCG, you need not worry on this front. Both are equipped in almost the same way in advising on technical issues with nearly the same quality of performance.


Salary in both McKinsey and BCG vary subtly and cannot be taken into consideration of you are going to choose between the two. With some of the finest brains coming into these two organizations from the elite institutions, the competition continues to grow. So the package offered for various designations remain more or less the same.

Inside Tips

With both McKinsey and BCG going neck on neck in this case, there are some tips coming from right inside the organizations which might be helpful for you. Try to build a strong reputation amongst everyone by excelling in your internship or the task assigned to you. By that you will be getting a visibility which will just provide the much needed boost to your career, depending a lot on your colleagues and immediate surroundings and work environment of course. But the hard work will definitely be paying off in a few years with more challenging roles coming up for you as you continue to strive for excellence.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Accenture vs McKinsey & Company – Inside View

Best Quotations Collection
McKinsey calls itself the best in the business when it comes to consulting in terms of strategy and management in the world. No doubt they are one of the heavyweights in this field which is crowded with heavyweights to very lightweights as more and more firms are diving into consulting these days. There are quite a few factors which we need to take into consideration when comparing the two elite organizations of McKinsey and Accenture. 
Work Pressure

Work pressure in McKinsey just becomes slightly more than Accenture primarily because there’s an intense work load that comes with working in such a high profile organization that many people dream of. So on one hand there is the job satisfaction that you get with working in one of the top organizations in the world. On the other hand, there is your work-life balance which you might just find slightly going through a bumpy ride.

This does not mean that work pressure at Accenture is low. In fact amongst it’s peers, Accenture has a good reputation of having stressful work hours across projects (check out Deloitte vs Accenture and TCS vs Accenture). But McKinsey is a class above Accenture simply because it’s one of the finest leaders in this consulting sector and leading the path by example.

Advising on Technical Issues

McKinsey primarily being a consulting firm, there is a dearth of technical knowledge, like most other players in the consulting field. There is nothing new with this, because their expertise lies in consulting, and not technology. McKinsey often ties up on periodic basis with technology firms to perform strategic analysis to implement their strategies based on the requirements of the business.

Whereas in Accenture, there is lots of technical expertise around you to help you analyze your strategies and deliver them based on the requirements of the client. This sometimes comes pretty handy because you know the people who you are working with and the team does not change very often. Having a connection with the people who understand and know you helps in the strategy implementation process overall.

Impact of your educational institution

McKinsey has specific policies into place when it comes to allocating consultants to serve their clients. In one word, I must admit it’s superb, since it’s the most effective way in the practical world. A management graduate coming from a grade A college from a Asian country might not be getting the grade A client in US/UK, but he might be getting a grade A client here in Asia or grade B onwards clients in US/UK (which isn’t bad at all, but not the best). So you can see you have preference on your home location when serving your grade A home companies. You definitely have an edge over a grade A management graduate coming from US/UK in your home location. But definitely, if the graduate you are competing with has graduated from Harvard then you are in for a tough competition.

Accenture does not have such huge impact on your educational backgrounds. But then of course, a heavyweight CV is likely to shine forth much more than the rest thereby bagging him or her the best clients. But on an overall basis, the thing that’s taken into consideration is  your work experience, previous successful implementations, flexibility across different domains, etc.

Synchronization of information across all levels

McKinsey needs to have a smooth flow of information across all it’s levels across all domains to provide seamless integration of experience, expertise, issues faced and success strategies to provide better strategic solutions. It is not surprising to a firm of this level when their partners are scattered all over the world. Say for example they had a tie up with firm X for a technical solution and then after the implementation was successful, the tie up ended. Later if you need a feedback or idea regarding the previous implementation, it’s way too a daunting task to get to them. Even if the tie is still existing, getting their attention might be difficult task.

Accenture’s Knowledge Exchange provides decent information of the client’s it is working with now and what kind of work is going on. But still, there ought to be far more better integration of services to facilitate communication across all levels to provide lightning fast communication.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Deloitte vs Accenture - Clash of the titans

After PWC was sold of to IBM, EY to Capgemini, years ago, the big players in the field of consulting remained Deloitte, Accenture, IBM, KPMG, Ernst & Young, CSC, etc. Most IT companies in general provide consulting service along with their IT solutions. The undoubted big players in this field can be named easily but the daunting task comes when scoring one above the other. But still, with proper knowledge, a clear picture can be put forward.

Job Security

When it comes to job security, IT consulting field is probably one of the worst. When the cost-cutting measures are to be put into place, the consultants will be the first to leave unless they have reached a position in the organization where they are irreplaceable. 

But when it comes between Deloitte and Accenture, Deloitte has an edge over Accenture. The business model of Deloitte is slightly more humanitarian than Accenture and it is not about getting the work done out of you for the organization no matter what. You will be feeling  this difference in the humanitarian approach better once you work in both the companies.

Training Facilities

The training facilities at Accenture are much better equipped. You will be groomed and taught well enough to find your place very soon in the live environment. Deloitte’s 107 acres Westlake training center facility is going to provide a boost to their learning and sharing culture, but it will be interesting to see how many people beyond Texas benefit from it.


The salary in both the organization’s is more or les the same, maybe a few bucks more or less. But if you are just starting out, you might well prefer Deloitte over Accenture if you get a higher package. But if you have got 4-5 years of experience, and you are probably a Senior Consultant, then you will notice that the salary isn't just competitive enough any more. So in the long run Deloitte might dry you up slightly, where Accenture will continue to satisfy you. But there’s a catch. Read on.

Work Culture

Deloitte’s employee policies are very rewarding to their employees. They are honored for their hard work and their business model ensures a happy overall workforce.

But in Accenture, you might just get the feel that all the organization is aiming for is to retain the taskforce anyhow. Be it by competitive packages, or something else. And you will have to prove yourself worthy of the package you are getting. People working in Accenture say you will continue to be a part of Accenture until you ‘burn out’.

Do you have a view on another aspect? Or do you have an opinion that you might just love to share? Feel free to speak out below.

Accenture vs TCS

This is a comparison that is not surprisingly read by thousands of visitors everyday. Click here to proceed reading with the article.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

TCS vs Accenture – Comparison at granular level

“I cannot decide which company to opt for. What to do now? Should i go to TCS or Accenture?” – This is the question that has crossed the minds of thousands till date for sure. And there has been random searches for data comparison from your peers, over the internet, from your relatives, and everywhere else. Well, now you can just go through this article below to find the most comprehensive comparison ever to help you take your decision.

Domain Allocation

After completion of your training, Accenture follows a process of allocating the domain randomly. It is not dependent on your performance during your training. So the guy who ws the topper during your initial training days might just be getting a domain unfamiliar to him and with much lesser growth opportunity and vice-versa. So there is nothing which could be predicted for certainty. It also apparently appeared as a fact from people who have worked in Accenture that it is a touch difficult to change the domain once one gets into it.

Coming to TCS, the training would be based on a a particular domain. But after you join, there is no certainty again which domain you will be allocated to. It can range all across the vast stretch of the technology field. But you can voice your preference before being allocated, or after few months of working, the outcome depending entirely upon the scenario and project you are working in.

Work Pressure

Work pressure at Accenture is often pretty high. People report often 12-15 hours of work. Not that this is the general scenario. But many projects have tasks which require a lot of labor. The Knowledge Exchange of Accenture is a vast ocean of information which you can access if you are working in Accenture and read for types of tasks and projects that have been going on and is currently being performed.

Work pressure at TCS is a pretty relative term. It varies across projects. Apart from the minimum working hours, you might have to stay back sometimes a couple of hours or more to finish your tasks on few days. But on a regular basis, the working hours is seldom hectic. But in some projects you might well have to work for 10 hours daily and might have to come on weekends as well.

Screening and firing

People working in Accenture have across different platforms reported that there is a little bit of screening policy in place. This policy might eventually lead to people not securing a place in the organization after sometime. However, there are a number of criteria which you have to fulfill to get thrown out, so there is absolutely no need to panic at all.

When it comes to firing of employees, TCS is a light year above the rest. So you need to perform either really badly or break the company’s rules, policies beyond such control that you will be forced to be thrown out of the company. On a serious note, periodic screening might happen, specially during times of recession when there were reports of down-sizing the employee strength in the organization, mainly from the 5-7 years experienced bracket.

So if you are actually having a thought across your mind which one has an edge, do not consider the recession factor because in such times, most organizations will have similar policies. But the level of firmness and aggression will vary much across organizations during those times. That is where you can find the difference between TCS and Accenture.

Brand Image

Accenture has the image of an international organization, a foreign company. But inside it is very much the same as in any MNC in India. There are the same kind of people working, same atmosphere and environment, same kind of policies and HRs, same sort of projects, project works and coding. The chances of onsite might just be a touch less because Accenture is present outside India in across many countries with pretty decent workforce. But however, having Accenture on your CV no doubt gives it a boost simply because it’s such a large global organization.

TCS has the brand image of a resolute, stable organization with the employee’s benefits in mind and hence job security is a touch higher here as is the general opinion across all levels of society. Onsite depends entirely on your project scenario. People, environment, policies and HRs are also not too different across organizations. So you will neither fall from the sky if you come to TCS after Accenture, nor if you come to TCS from Accenture.

Salary hikes

Salary hikes in Accenture seem to have faced a block after the recession, specially for freshers joining the company. But anyhow, it is way near to the industry standards as time is passing by. But joining Accenture as a lateral and then with about 2 years of experience, the hikes and salary seems to be almost at par with your peers in other organizations.

TCS gives a pretty decent package and continuing to do so for the freshers as well. The package is also nice for laterals joining the company. But for people who are not laterals, the pace of hikes seem to be moving from 4th gear to 3rd gear as per the public opinion. But anyhow, it is good enough to satisfy your needs as people in the IT sector get saturated with money very soon, be it in TCS or Accenture!

Onsite opportunities

Accenture has onsite opportunities depending on the project you will be working on. But the fact is that there is a very large number of branches of Accenture across the world, so this might just cut into your chances of getting an onsite. This not to say that people do not get onsite chances from Accenture, but at a piece of the cake is taken away due to this factor.

TCS on the other hand provides a decent number of onsite opportunities, but then again, depending upon the projects. With a few US policies being newly introduced into place, the onsite visas have dried up a little. I wonder how much it is helping Obama’s unemployment issue at hand, but still the policies have been created with a good intention to the nation. So when the opportunity comes along with your visa, you can happily fly away.

Do you want to have a comparison from another perspective? Do you have something to share? Feel free to speak out below or click here.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Users now realizing Facebook’s latest changes show they are wary of their competitor Google Plus

Facebook has recently made some pretty decent tweaks into their existing interface. All of them aims at the popular features which had been giving an edge to their closest rival Google Plus. These changes come at a time when people are in two-minds which platform to use. Facebook is trying it’s level best to provide it’s users with best in-class experience.

Some of the most noticeable changes are the privacy controls for each status update (a 99% copy of Google Plus), privacy settings for each of the account information that an user can have in his or her profile (100% inspired by Google Plus) and a nice tweak to the apparently horrible theater mode photo viewer. In the photo viewer, the previous and next arrow have been aesthetically placed with the ‘Like’ and ‘Comment’ buttons finding a place a notch inside the photo thus saving some vital space below the pic.

It is obvious that Facebook users will be finding the changes very helpful and might just keep them a few days more from shifting to Google Plus. It will be a treat to watch what happens. Do you use Facebook or Google Plus more often? Are you planning to move to the other soon?

Monday, August 29, 2011

How is South Point going to change with the CBSE board being introduced

South Point will finally be allowing it’s students to opt for the CBSE board. The previous West Bengal board will also continue to be present along side. Needles to say, this top prestigious institution is headed towards a major infrastructural revamp following this change. The administration must be accomplishing awareness and training drives to prepare the existing faculties for the challenge. New faculties might also be included in the new system.

But like all new beginnings, there are risks, speculations and expectations associated with this move. The guardians of the students have already been doing the analysis with data and information from various as to what are the pros and cons of the system if their ward is to pursue under either of the boards, what might the future implications be like. There are several factors that come into play when one starts to think of this scenario.

Change of syllabus and pattern

The students who have so far been studying under the West Bengal board will suddenly be facing a new environment, where questions get objective instead of subjective, where clear concepts to solve unknown mathematics problems become more critical than solving some generalized huge problems, where techniques of studying will have to change from referring to limited number of books to a ocean of books. Choosing the right books will become crucial as CBSE being an all-India board will have a decent high number of options when it comes to books to choose from for every subject. It might not be that serious a issue because with the quality of faculty and guidance South Point possess, but the students will also have to be proactive to accustom themselves to this pattern.

Varying pressure and study load

The pressure of study will be one of the biggest change that students will experience. Minds will feel more free and less burdened. Rather than memorizing answers to questions 3-4 pages long, points and specific details will come to the forefront with higher priority. Needless to say, solving the question papers is going to form the integral part of the study plan of the students. I am not going into the study plan details now. But this less burden on the mind should not be interpreted at any cost that you can manage by studying less. On the contrary, you should be following a more strategic and systematic study plan. Smart-working students come off with far better performance than their hard-working counterparts with the same amount of effort.

All India Entrance Examinations Exposure

Most of the all India entrance examinations have their syllabus nearly same as the CBSE/ICSE syllabus unlike the West Bengal board which synchronizes only with the West Bengal Joint Entrance Examination. So if you are opting for the CBSE board, you might just have the edge over your West Bengal board counterparts when it comes to the All India exams which opens you up to an array of institutes to pursue your higher studies across India. But it’s a win-win situation. Look at it this way, you have an edge on the All India exams which have much higher competition as it is on an all India basis, but your counterparts from West Bengal board have an edge on the West Bengal Joint Entrance Examination which has much lesser competition compared to AIEEE and other national entrance exams. So this becomes a deciding factor.

What can you do

Have you already decided which board to opt for? Share your reasons by commenting below and help your friends. If you are a Pointer, click here and please share this post on your wall and with your friends. Are you still undecided? Just go through the comments below or ask a question here.

Update (10 hours later)

As far as I know, number of students selected for science will be 350 as it happens every year. But if the number of students opting for CBSE crosses 200, separate sections might be started, thereby taking the total count to 550.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Google Plus will be a Facebook and Orkut killer

People have never really sticked to one particular social networking site for a long time. Since Orkut started out way back in the 2000s, people flocked into it and it became a madness. There was nothing that could be compared to Orkut’s mad addiction to anything in the contemporary internet or physical world. Students and adults, geeks and normal people, everyone went on to live into it. It became a world of it’s own.

Along came Facebook. It had been there for quite sometime. But Indians took time to get to into it’s craze as they had already been into Orkut and Orkut too had been complacent and happy that people are using it. Slowly but steadily the new features of Facebook lured people away from Orkut. Many people who did not want to leave Orkut had to leave because many of their friends are no longer using it.

Along came Twitter, the birth of micro-blogging. Then as evolution being the trend, micro-blogging and sharing updates with superb privacy controls and some extravagant features lead to the birth of Google Plus. It will definitely be a extraordinary platform for quite some decades to come for sure.