A low level analysis of Dialog Post Paid Packages

I'm  having fever these days so on bed rest. With the new TRC regulations n stuff dialog introduced new post paid packages. While I was going through them at the University computer lab my friend Hansa said that these packages are actually ripping you off. He was right!

i100 package (rental is 100/-)
you get 100 minutes talk time free. Thats exactly what you pay. so if u use all ur minutes theres no loss.

i350 package (rental is 350/-)
once you add the costs of all the free entitlements the total is 325! You are loosing 25 rupees if you go for this!

like wise for the i500 you loose 12.50/- and for the 1000 package you lose 25 rupees.

So rather than using any of the above its actually cheaper to use the i100 package. My10 feature has no discounts on calls. Only D2D SMS are offered at 10cents which is normally 25cents.

However there seems to be a deal breaker with the i250. When you add up the free entitlements the total actually exceeds the rental.

So what type of customers have Dialog targeted with the other packages?

*I may be entirely wrong. Please correct me if i have totally misinterpreted the package offers

GPS fix for Samsung Galaxy 5

The default GPS settings Galaxy comes with sometimes takes  a very long time to get a gps fix. I found these settings from http://wheeqo.web.id/tutorial/fix-gps-lock-on-samsung-galaxy-5 where it worked for me fine. So I'm re-posting them on my blog just in case they get archived or something. Credit to the original poster.

Alternate Way to Fix GPS Lock Issue on Samsung Galaxy 5 i5500/i5503
Update: Based on my experience, the froyo version doesn’t need to be modified the gps settings.
I try this tips and got lock GPS quite fast even inside my house, faster than ever.
I got this tips on http://www.kaskus.us/showpost.php?p=312953663&postcount=4696. Credit to the poster.
Make sure GPS satellite and Wireless networks has been activated.
  1. Press *#*#1472365#*#*. This will bring to GPS setting.
  1. Settings 
  2. -> Parameter Settings -> Address -> Server Type1x MPC
  1. Settings 
  2. -> Parameter Settings -> Position modeoption3
  1. Settings 
  2. -> Fix Request Settings -> Session OperationStandalone
  1. Settings 
  2. -> Fix Request Settings -> Server OptionLocal
  1. gpsOne XTRA
  2.  -> Xtra EnableEnable
Then try with Google Maps.
If you want to go back to the default setting:
  1. Settings -> Parameter Settings -> Address -> Server Type: UMTS SLP
  1. Settings -> Parameter Settings -> Position mode: option2
  1. Settings -> Fix Request Settings -> Session Operation: MS-based
  1. Settings -> Fix Request Settings -> Server Option: Default

A few facts on Paintballing equipment

paintballing stuff is not dat expensive. theres's a huge variety. there are different types of mechanisms/ screw types/ barrel types/ pressurized air or CO2 etc. there are even sniper guns, fully electronic, semi electronic and fully mechanical. i think wat we used is a fully mechanical one since they're da cheapest and has the least maintenance cost. the price ranges from 39USD to over 1000USD. 
 its basically like buying a SLR camera. the main part is the marker.
all the other stuff come separately unless u buy a packaged deal. other parts are the air/co2 tank and the ball loading thing at the top(called a hopper). optionally u can buy longer or shorter barrels which will respectively increase accuracy and lower weight.

Click the image to open in full size.
*** Stiffi Paintball Barrels Available @ ZephyrPaintball.com!! ***
Crossfire Fiber Wrap 45ci 4500psi HPA Tank
high pressure air tank, (4500psi)

on a different note, condoms (in paintballing) are socks like things that u put on the gun in case of accidentally firing it. the sock like thing will catch the ball outside the barrel. its a type of barrel block. other barrel blocks are plugs like things u stuff inside barrel.

anyways from ebay u can buy a full kit for around 100USD. one product i found here. its not available to sri lanka and i dont think buying it off ebay is a good idea. im just saying, those hu are interested, this is not dat expensive.

the expensive part is the filling of compressed air/ N2 or CO2. out of this co2 is the inexpensive one. compressed air /N2 is filled at 3000-4500psi. a compressor which can compress air to such pressure costs around 5000USD. they are normally used in filling suba diving tanks. ( a normal compressor at a fuel station is around 100psi).

CO2 is the practical one. co2 comes as liquid in tanks with around 1800psi. the guns hav co2 bottles with several capacities
4 Ounce - 150 to 200 shots
9 Ounce - 450 to 500 shots
12 Ounce - 500 to 600 shots
20 ounce - 600 to 650 shots 

to fill the co2 bottles we need a bulk co2 tank, a few valve gadgets and a hanging scale(to measure the filled weight of the co2). the gadgets are a one time purchase and as on ebay can be purchased for around 20USD. youtube has lots of videos on refilling co2. its very easy. the price of bulk co2 in sri lanka is what i dont know. i will post when  i find out. 

on ebay 1000 paintball balls are 20USD. there are foam balls (re-usable) that can be used to target shoot which doesnt break. (not to shoot other ppl)

fix for Epson C90

A few years back I bought a printer in hurry. It was an Epson C90. Later only I found out that it was a total cartridge eater. It has 4 separate cartridges(CYMK) and it won't print in black, even if any other cartridge is missing or empty! I got really frustrated and threw it away. But now I have found a solution and it seems to work just fine.

It's called a refillable ink system. It mimics the original epson cartridges and is refillable with liquid ink that is very cheap. It is also environmentally friendly because you don't have to throw away any plastic because you are reusing the same cartridge over and over again.

These are not still available in Sri Lanka. I tried unity plaza and they only offered the continuous ink system which costs Rs. 8000 and is bulky. They are not worth for your everyday use home printer. They are often used in places where mass printing is done like in book shops near our university (University of Moratuwa).

In this pack there came 4 cartridges. They nicely fit my printer. Only my black and cyan cartridges were empty so I only replaced them. The shop owner said to use them all at the same time or else it won't work. But it did!

There are two plugs in a cartridge. One is to refill, and the other is the air vent. Make sure you pull out the correct plug before starting to print. There were no instructions in the box. The instructions were on their website.

Installing Domestic Distribution Board

Our house is almost 20 years old. Those days it there were no MCB's. The only option was rewirable fuses.

With time the Distribution box started to give trouble. the fuses became loose and the wires were deteriorated at junctions. Because of this the sensitive electronic equipment connected to these loops started giving trouble.

Finally, without being lazy I decided to replace the DB. Since I'm a Sri Lankan, I suggested my father we should by Orange; a Sri Lankan brand. Plus its 4 times less expensive than imported brands. The important brands carry a life time warranty whereas Orange has a two year warranty.

In a house hold, there are several loops so that a malfunctioning of one equipment will not trip the whole house at once. The live wire is fed to each MCB at the top and each loop begins from the MCB. All the neutral wires returning to the DB is connected to the neutral bus bar.

In the old system, this is how the live wire connected to one side of the fuses.

Just so that i won't mix up any wires, I labeled the live wires of the loop start.

Fixed the plastic box frame.

Fixed the MCB's and wired them.

Screwd in the cover and it's done.

How mothers work

Today I woke up at 10am and started working on the badminton tournament as usual. That means I’m staying in front of the computer fixing deadlines on what needs to be done and making phone calls to arrange stuff. Amma called me twice and yelled twice to have breakfast (milk rice) but I said I’ll at once have lunch. Next thing I know she brings everything to my desk. I couldn’t even say thank you because I was on a phone call trying to get free projectors for S. Thomas sports complex on the day of the tournament.
Regardless of the child’s age, how mothers work is “feed child”.

Wind power is the future

IET organized a wonderful visit to the Puttalam wind power plant last Saturday. It was really interesting because of the clean power it produces and the how less it affects the environment. The wind power generating units are made in Spain by a leading company called Gamesa. Due to economies of scale the Sri Lankan investors couldn’t go for plants higher than 60 meters. Therefore they purchased the smallest units produced by Gamesa where each unit generates 800kW. Due to government regulations one private power producer (PPP) can only produce 10 MW. Therefore the same investors formed two companies where each company owned 10MW and the total generation capacity became 20MW.
These units are of the second latest technology. The wind turbine adjusts its pitch and direction for maximum wind thrust. The wind turbine is geared to a synchronous generator. The AC produced is rectified into DC and then inverted to form a clean 50Hz AC power through semiconductor power electronics. The gear system naturally wastes a lot of energy. The latest technology is to have the wind turbine directly coupled to a low speed (higher number of poles) synchronous generator.
The wind turbines only extract 50% of the energy in the wind. Hence the impact to the climate is less than negligible. According to statistics only 1 bird hits a wind turbine each year in the US.
A Canadian consultant whom we met at the site told us that wind power is the future for Sri Lanka. He was very passionate about wind power plants. He also added that there are many sites with a high wind potential in Sri Lanka and investors are willing to go for this technology, but CEB is only allocating 15% of the installed capacity for non conventional plants. That is because of the low reliability of these power plants. US have a 25% wind power installed capacity, but it has spinning reserves in case the wind stops blowing. Sri Lanka doesn’t have that financial strength to entertain spinning reserves. Therefore we burn fuel instead.