Tuesday, December 02, 2008

The Shepherd Story

A shepherd was tending his flock in a field, when a new sports car screeched to a stop on the road nearby in a cloud of dust. The driver, a young man in expensive designer clothes and sunglasses, leans out of the window and shouts over to the shepherd, "If I tell you exactly how many sheep you have here, can I take one?"

The shepherd looks up slowly up at the young man, then looks at his peaceful flock, and calmly answers, "Sure, why not?"

The young man steps out of his car holding a state-of-the-art palmtop pda, with which he proceeds to connects to a series of websites, first calling up satellite navigation system to pinpoint his location, then keying in the location to generate an ultra-high resolution picture of the field. After emailing the photo to an image processing facility, the processed data is returned, which he then feeds into an online database, and enters the parameters for a report. Within another few seconds a miniature printer in the car produces a full colour report containing several pages of analysis and results. The young man studies the data for a few more seconds and returns to the shepherd.

"You have exactly one-thousand five-hundred and eighty-six sheep, including three rams, and seven-hundred and twenty-two lambs."

"That's right," says the shepherd, mildly impressed. "Well, I guess that means you get to take one of my sheep."

The young man makes his choice and loads the animal onto the back seat of his car, at which the shepherd says, almost as an afterthought, "Hey there, if I can tell you what your business is, will you give me back my sheep?"

The young man, feeling confident, agrees.

"You're a consultant," says the shepherd.

"Wow, that's right," says the young man, taken aback, "How did you guess that?"

"No guessing required," answers the shepherd, "You showed up here even though nobody called you. You took a fee for giving me an answer that already know, to a question I never asked, and you know nothing about my business. Now give me back my dog."

Source: http://www.businessballs.com/

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

The Stock Market story

It was autumn, and the Red Indians asked their New Chief if the winter was going to be cold or mild. Since he was a Red Indian chief in a modern society, he couldn't tell what the weather was going to be.

Nevertheless, to be on the safe side, he replied to his Tribe that the winter was indeed going to be cold and that the members of the village should collect wood to be prepared.

But also being a practical leader, after several days he got an idea. He went to the phone booth, called the National Weather Service and asked 'Is the coming winter going to be cold?'

'It looks like this winter is going to be quite cold indeed,' the weather man responded.

So the Chief went back to his people and told them to collect even more wood. A week later, he called the National Weather Service again.

'Is it going to be a very cold winter?'

'Yes,' the man at National Weather Service again replied, 'It's definitely going to be a very cold winter.'

The Chief again went back to his people and ordered them to collect every scrap of wood they could find. Two weeks later, he called the National Weather Service again. 'Are you absolutely sure that the winter is going to be very cold?'

'Absolutely,' The Man replied. 'It's going to be one of the coldest winters ever.'

'How can you be so sure?' the Chief asked.

The weatherman replied, 'The Red Indians are collecting wood like crazy.'

This is how Stock Markets work!!!

Courtesy: Mail Forward

Friday, November 07, 2008

Peg after Peg

I never take risk while drinking..

When I come from office in the evening, wife is cooking
I can hear the noise of utensils in the kitchen
I stealthily enter the house
Take out the bottle from my black cupboard
Shivaji Maharaj is looking at me from the photo frame
But still no one is aware of it
Becoz I never take a risk..

I take out the glass from the rack above the old sink
Quickly enjoy one peg
Wash the glass and again keep it on the rack
Of course I also keep the bottle inside my cupboard
Shivaji Maharaj is giving a smile
I peep into the kitchen
Wife is cutting potatoes
No one is aware of what I did
Becoz I never take a risk..

I: Any news on Iyer's daughter's marriage
Wife: Nope, she doesn't seem to be that lucky. Still they are looking out for her

I again come out; there is a small noise of the black cupboard
But I don't make any sound while taking out the bottle
I take out the glass from the old rack above sink
Quickly enjoy one peg
Wash the bottle and keep it in the sink
Also keep the Black Glass in the cupboard
But still no one is aware of what I did
Becoz I never take a risk..

I: But still I think Iyer's daughter's age is not that much
Wife: What are you saying? She is 28 yrs old... like an aged horse
I: (I forgot her age is 28) Oh Oh...

I again take out potatoes out from my black cupboard
But the cupboard's place has automatically changed
I take out the bottle from the rack and quickly enjoy one peg in the sink
Shivaji Maharaj laughs loudly
I keep the rack in the potatoes & wash Shivaji Maharaj's photo & keep it in the black cupboard
Wife is keeping the sink on the stove
But still no one is aware of what I did
Becoz I never take a risk..

I: (getting angry) you call Mr. Iyer a horse? If you say that again, I will cut your tongue...!
Wife: Don't just blabber something, go out and sit quietly...

I take out the bottle from the potatoes
Go in the black cupboard and enjoy a peg
Wash the sink and keep it over the rack
Wife is giving a smile
Shivaji Maharaj is still cooking
But still no one is aware of what I did
Becoz I never take a risk..

I: (laughing) So Iyer is marrying a horse!!
Wife: Hey go and sprinkle some water on your face...

I again go to the kitchen, and quietly sit on the rack
Stove is also on the rack
There is a small noise of bottles from the room outside
I peep and see that wife is enjoying a peg in the sink
But none of the horses are aware of what I did
Becoz Shivaji Maharaj never takes a risk..

Iyer is still cooking
And I am looking at my wife from the photo and laughing
Becoz I never take what???

Source: Yet another mail forward

8 Monkey Experiment

Put eight monkeys in a room. In the middle of the room is a ladder, leading to a bunch of bananas hanging from a hook on the ceiling.

Each time a monkey tries to climb the ladder, all the monkeys are sprayed with ice water, which makes them miserable.

Soon enough, whenever a monkey attempts to climb the ladder, all of the other monkeys, not wanting to be sprayed, set upon him and beat him up.

Soon, none of the eight monkeys ever attempts to climb the ladder.

One of the original monkeys is then removed, and a new monkey is put in the room. Seeing the bananas and the ladder, he wonders why none of the other monkeys are doing the obvious. But undaunted, he immediately begins to climb the ladder. All the other monkeys fall upon him and beat him silly. He has no idea why.

However, he no longer attempts to climb the ladder. A second original monkey is removed and replaced. The newcomer again attempts to climb the ladder, but all the other monkeys hammer the crap out of him. This includes the previous new monkey, who, grateful that he's not on the receiving end this time, participates in the beating because all the other monkeys are doing it. However, he has no idea why he's attacking the new monkey.

One by one, all the original monkeys are replaced.

Eight new monkeys are now in the room. None of them have ever been sprayed by ice water. None of them attempt to climb the ladder. All of them will enthusiastically beat up any new monkey who tries, without having any idea why.

This is how company policies get established.

Source: Another mail forward.

The Ant and The Grass Hopper

The Old Version..
The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant's a fool and laughs & dances & plays the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter so he dies out in the cold.

The Modern Version..
The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks the ant's a fool and laughs & dances & plays the summer away. Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.

NDTV, BBC, CNN show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. The World is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be that this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Arundhati Roy stages a demonstration in front of the ant's house. Medha Patkar goes on a fast along with other grasshoppers demanding that grasshoppers be relocated to warmer climates during winter. Amnesty International and Koffi Annan criticize the Indian Government for not upholding the fundamental rights of the grasshopper. The Internet is flooded with online petitions seeking support to the grasshopper (many promising Heaven and Everlasting Peace for prompt support as against the wrath of God for non-compliance). Opposition MP's stage a walkout. Left parties call for "Bharat Bandh" in West Bengal and Kerala demanding a Judicial Enquiry. CPM in Kerala immediately passes a law preventing Ants from working hard in the heat so as to bring about equality of poverty among ants and grasshoppers.

Lalu Prasad allocates one free coach to Grasshoppers on all Indian Railway Trains, aptly named as the 'Grasshopper Rath'.

Finally, the Judicial Committee drafts the "Prevention of Terrorism Against Grasshoppers Act [POTAGA]", with effect from the beginning of the winter.

Arjun Singh makes Special Reservation for Grass Hopper in educational Insititutions & in Govt Services.

The ant is fined for failing to comply with POTAGA and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the Government and handed over to the grasshopper in a ceremony covered by NDTV.

Arundhati Roy calls it "a triumph of justice". Lalu calls it 'Socialistic Justice'. CPM calls it the 'revolutionary resurgence of the downtrodden' Koffi Annan invites the grasshopper to address the UN General Assembly.

Many years later.. The ant has since migrated to the US and set up a multi billion dollar company in silicon valley. Hundreds of grasshoppers still die of starvation despite reservation somewhere in India..

As a result of loosing lot of hard working ants and feeding the grasshoppers India is still a developing country..

Source: A mail forward

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Extracting text from scanned documents and copy protected pdfs

Consider a situation where you need to copy text from a pdf document and you cant because it is copy protected. Worse still, the text that you need is in a scanned document or image! Ever wondered how you can do that?

Well.. there is a way! Read on, to find to find out how.

A pre-requisite for this is that you should have Microsoft Office Document Imaging feature installed in your computer (which is typically installed by default, along with Microsoft Office)
  1. Open the pdf or the image file from which you need to extract the text
  2. Print the file using the Microsoft Office Document Image Writer, by selecting it from the printer name drop down.
  3. This will print the document to a .mdi file ( Document Imaging Format). On the save prompt give a file name and save the file.
  4. The file will automatically open, and from the Tools menu, select Send Text to Word option.
  5. Choose a preferred location for saving the Word file and click OK.
  6. Click Ok for the prompt "You must re-run OCR before performing this operation. This may take a while".
  7. This will extract text from the .mdi file and save it to the Word file. The Word file will also automatically open at the end of the operation.
This is simple right? But remember that formatting may not be correct and the accuracy of text extraction will depend on the quality of the scanned image. But it can effectively serve the purpose when it comes to getting the text out of irritating copy protected pdfs and scanned text documents.

I found this useful information from the internet when i was required to type 4 text filled pages, because the pdf was copy protected. Took me just 30 minutes to google out the information, understand the technique and get the extracted word file. (I would have taken 30 minutes per page to type)

Courtesy and credit goes to the original poster.

Earlier there was another way for pdf files. Use gmail's "view as html" option to get the copy protected pdf file displayed in html format and then simply copying the text. Though i have not used it myself, i saw many posts and blogs suggesting this. But unfortunately, the feature no longer works in gmail.