Blog

What surprised Mark Zuckerberg, at his 2005 Harvard Lecture

Back in 2005 Mark Zuckerberg took a “Computer Science” lecture at Harvard.

He started by talking about some of the strategies that Facebook used to improve its performance, one of them being caching.

After talking for a while he asked the audience for any questions. To his surprise there weren’t any technical questions as such. Well anyone will be surprised I guess. After answering a few questions he finally commented “No CS Questions”.

Watch this clip, which is quite funny !

Simple and natural ways to increase Endorphins

In medical terms Endorphins are the chemicals produced naturally by the nervous system to reduce pain or stress. In short it can boost your happiness.

Low levels of endorphins may make you feel stressed out.

Foods like Dark Chocolate, Spicy Foods or in general any food that you like wil cause endorphin release.

Laughter increases endorphins. Faking it also helps.

Exercise is known to boost endorphins.

Listening to music also boosts endorphins.

Sunshine also works wonders.

Other ways to improve endorphins

  • Meditation
  • Breathing Exercises
  • Massage

Praise for the “National Tele Mental Health Program” by NIMHANS director which can be a game changer

In the Union Budget presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for the year 2022-23, it was announced that there will be a Tele Mental Health Program to support people who have been facing deteriorating mental health, especially amid the pandemic.

This initiative has been praised by Dr Pratima Murthy, Director of National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS), as per an article published in financialexpress.

She said that the decision could be a “game-changer” for the situation of mental health care in India. Given that the pandemic has led to an increase in the mental health problems of people across different age groups. In the budget she has proposed setting up of 23 tele mental health centres in the country, with NIMHANS acting as the nodal centre.

The article also talks about a mental health survey which was carried out by NIMHANS . The surbey showed that 10.2% of the population suffered from diagnosable mental health problems or substance use disorder.

The good thing is that people have started talking about their mental health problems. It has also been observed that practices like Yoga and Mindfulness can help with such problems. Music Therapy is also a good option that people are exploring.

Military Technique to help you sleep in 2 minutes

A military technique for falling asleep is seeing a lot of popularity again, and it could be a good idea to see if it helps you with sleep. It’s been reported that it works in two minutes or less.

This technique sounds similar to a Yog Asana referred to as Shavasana. Which is used for deep relaxation.

Justin Agustin shared this. The technique was originally designed for fighter pilots, who need their sleep so they can stay focused.
He claims that the trick allowed soldiers to go to sleep at any time – even in the middle of a fight.

He goes on to explain the technique. You start by relaxing your body starting from forehead. Then your eyes, cheek and jaw. Then relax each part all the way down to your feet. To overcome stresses in the mind one way is to imagine you are lying in a canoe on a calm lake with clear skies, or that you’re in a black velvet hammock in a dark room.

Should you get distracted, by intrusive thoughts or bullets flying through the trenches, you should repeat the words “don’t think, don’t think, don’t think” in your mind for 10 seconds, before returning to picturing your chosen calm scene.

Try this next time you have trouble sleeping.

What India can learn from Qiddiya (the Kingdom’s entertainment city)

Saudi Arabia is a country rich in geographical and cultural diversity. They always try to plan and build things that amaze all of us. In the year 2017, they announced the construction and set up of Qiddiya, also known as the kingdom’s entertainment city.

What is Qiddiya?

It’s one of the most popular and awaited projects of Saudi Arabia. The public investment fund of Saudi has announced plans to construct the Kingdom’s largest sports, cultural and entertainment city for the people.

It is named Qiddiya as it’s situated in Al Qiddiya, which is on the southwestern side of Riyadh. It is also planned that approximately 4000 residential houses will be built by the year 2025 and the numbers will increase every year.

It’s built over 377 square km of land and is planned to have six different styles of theme parks, water parks, an F1 racing track, athletic stadium, creative corner side, artistic activities and many more.

What is the purpose of Qiddiya?

The CEO of Qiddiya stated that this project is one of its kind, with huge investments.

It’s expected to give a boost to the countries economy, which currently depends on oil primarily.

It’s planned very carefully and tactfully. The purpose is not just to attract tourists but also provide a great alternative to the residents, so they don’t leave the country to spend. The Qiddiya construction was planned to direct all the tourism and keep them intact in the kingdom only.

So what can India learn?

  • A similar project can boost the economy, create jobs and opportunities and invite investments.
  • It can also be a good opportunity to showcase Indias rich cultural heritage.
  • It can boost the tourism sector significantly and also inspire youngsters looking to try different things.

Qiddiya can be an inspiration for India, and building something similar can not just boost the economy and create jobs but also boost the sports and entertainment sectors.

What is Astro and why you should consider using it to build your website

Astro is one of the most notable projects of the year. Astro is a tool to build web sites that load faster because they ship less JavaScript.

Risingstars

How can you build a faster website?

To build a faster website you need to ship less code. Astro is a kind of static site builder that delivers lightning-fast performance with a modern developer experience.

With Astro you can build your site using your own framework like React, Vue or just HTML and JavaScript. Astro then renders the entire page to static HTML, removing all JavaScript from your final build by default.

If there is a real need for some Javscript component, Astro loads it when it’s visible.

It supports all the npm packages, CSS modules etc and is SEO enabled.

How it works?

Astro works like a static site generator which means it will generate a static HTML site for you during build, with almost no Javascript. It’s pretty obvious that this will be much faster compared to a site with Javascript.

When a component, like add to cart or carousel, needs some JavaScript, it loads that component. The rest of your site continues to exist as static, lightweight HTML. This new approach to web architecture is called islands architecture.

Sample project is available at Github – https://github.com/ankur-srivastava/astro-blog

Meet Nouf Marwaai : Founder of the Arab Yoga Foundation and Padma Shri Awardee

In a Tweet President Ram Nath Kovind said that Nouf Marwaai played an instrumental role for legalising Yoga in Saudi Arabia. She was born with an auto-immune disease and overcame the challenge through Yoga and Ayurveda. She was awarded Padma Shree in 2018.

She is the first Saudi certified yoga instructor. She is also an entrepreneur who has been travelling between Saudi Arabia and India and founded Arab Yoga Foundation.

In an interview published by Arab News, she says “I was underweight, tired, and suffered from malnutrition due to the extreme diets they put me on for my allergies and digestive problems. Symptoms that I had suffered from were joint pain, weakness, chronic fatigue, skin rash, allergies, loss of focus, sleeping problems and stiffness.”

She started taking organic vegetarian diet and stumbled upon a Yoga book. After which she travelled to India to study Yoga and Ayurvedic medicine.

This helped her heal and become stronger. She loves traveling to India.

iPhone 14 may offer upto 2TB memory, thanks to QLC

With consumers facing storage issues in their iPhones due to upgrades, videos and apps Apple has been working to improve and offer more storage.

As per some reports it is expected that iPhone14 may give you memory upto 2TB. Thanks to Quad-level cells (QLC), which is the latest development in flash storage technology.

What is QLC (Quad Level Cells)

QLC is the latest in flash storage technology. It stores 4 bits per cell compared to flash storage which stores 1 bit per cell.
Triple Level Cells extends this to 8 bits per cell.

There is some drawback also. As per ComputerWeekly “QLC is slower and breaks down more quickly than other flash” and to overcome this suppliers use caching techniques.

Gentle Introduction to HTMX

Htmx is a library that allows you to access modern browser features directly from HTML, rather than using javascript. It’s actually built using javascript.

“The concept is, let’s use the original model of the web for building web apps, but let’s make HTML more powerful.”
– Carson Gross, creator of htmx

Gross also thinks that HTMX can reduce the complexity for many websites. There is a lot of Javascript code that is written, and with HTMX we can reduce that considerably.

It extends the core idea of HTML so that you can do much more with it. When used on server side you typically send back HTML and not JSON.

Frontend developers do not need to write JavaScript, when using HTMX. They can use additional attributes in HTML tags to achieve dynamic content and updates.

It’s backend agnostic, so you can use your choice of programming language for backend like Java, Python, PHP etc.

Lets take an example

<a href="/about">About</a>

When clicked this anchor tag will take you to the “About” page. It will issue an HTTP GET request and display the response.

Now consider

<button hx-post="/clicked"
       hx-trigger="click"
       hx-target="#parent-div"
       hx-swap="outerHTML">
    Click Me!
</button>

This tells htmx:

“When a user clicks on this button, issue an HTTP POST request to ‘/clicked’ and use the content from the response to replace the element with the id parent-div in the DOM”

The project documentation says that now

  • Any element, not just anchors and forms, can issue an HTTP request.
  • Any event, not just clicks or form submissions, can trigger requests.
  • Any HTTP verb, not just GET and POST, can be used
  • Any element, not just the entire window, can be the target for update by the request.

Sodium Ion batteries may be a good replacement for Lithium Ion

Lithium-Ion is the preferred battery technology that powers most of the electric vehicles (EV). Given the demand supply gap alternate options are being explored by various startups and automobile makers.

Reliance New Energy Solar is all set to Acquire Faradion Limited. Faradion is a leading global sodium-ion battery technology company, based out of UK.

Source – https://faradion.co.uk/reliance-new-energy-solar-to-acquire-faradion-limited/

Sodium-Ion is one such option, which looks promising. It’s less expensive than the current lithium-ion battery, since it’s more available than Lithium. It can be extracted from salt.

Sodium and Lithium share a lot of similarities, being next to each other in the periodic table.

Lithium-Ion batteries also need Cobalt, which is expensive and not easy to obtain. While Na-Ion uses Iron and Manganese, which are cheaper.

The only downside of Na-Ion is it’s less dense compared to Li-Ion.