iRead, iLearn, iWrite. Hence, iBlog.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Disable comments in selective posts in Blogger [BlogSpot]

Please check this post - Disable comments in selective posts in Blogger [BlogSpot] - Update

I like using Blogger+Blogspot has my blog platform & host. Get to enjoy a host of features offered to me by the reliable Mountain View guys for absolutely no money at all [have never quite bothered to click on the Monetize button, something they strategically placed on my Blogger dashboard quite some time back ;) – ungrateful me]. As things stand no free blog platform & host, IMHO, is as feature-rich as Blogger+Blogspot is currently. However using the platform, on occasions, I tend to moan about the absence of certain features in Blogger [more often than not, after checking out a similar feature being offered on some other platform :)] that would make life SUPER. One such feature would be the ability to enable or disable comments to selective posts on the fly. Wordpress users it appears have it good as far as this feature is concerned as some kind soul has developed a plug-in to do just that.

Well, till the time somebody comes up with similar solution for Blogger, here is a kludge way to disable comments in selected posts in Blogger.

Take for example this post. As you can see here, you will not be able comment on that post [not that many people do anyway, even if comments are enable w/o even captchas, but that is a different issue ;)]. In order to do so, prior to making an new post, you must disable comments in you Blogger account. Then post the new content on to the blog.

Disable comments in selective posts in Blogger [Blogspot]

Once posted, you may enable comments again so that all the other posts on your blog can be commented upon. Not the most convenient way to go about it, but till someone comes up with a neater option, my way seem to be the only way ;). Would be nice if it could be done from within windows Live Writer itself [which, by the way, is the most awesomest blogging tool EVAR :)].

Please note: Comments once disabled can not be re-enabled for the post. Also you need to disable comments before you make the new post.

Godspeed


India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place

The 5th of December 2009 passed by without much of a notice here in India. However it was a day that was marked by an important milestone in the 2nd stage of India’s 3 Stage Nuclear programme. On that day, the core of India’s Prototype Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor was lowered into its safety vessel. Though it would use U-238 to generate Pu-239, the eventual aim to shift to the Thorium cycle as India has the 2nd largest Thorium reserves in the world.

Bharatiya Nabhikiya Vidyut Nigam Limited [BHAVINI] was responsible for the fabrication of the Core after which it was transported & lowered in to the Safety Vessel, manufactured by Larsen & Toubro [L&T].

Did not catch the news being reported on any Indian News channel – a really sad reflection of priorities of our media houses. Posting a video of the Core being transported & lowered into the Safety vessel.

Duration: 5 minutes [No Audio]

 

One of the better News articles reporting that event: Core vessel installed at Kalpakkam fast breeder reactor news

If you are unable to watch the video due to some reason, you may check out some of the pictures of the whole process. A welcome change has been the uploading of hi-res picture by our GoI agencies [though following an absolutely non-uniform file naming scheme – made batch download is a b1atch ;)].

Official announcement from BHAVINI of India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into the Safety Vessel Construction of India's 2nd prototype Fast Breeder Reactor at Kalpakkam India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place
Core of India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor being transported & lowered into place India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place
Manufacturing the Core of the Fast Breeder Reacto Core of India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor being transported & lowered into the safety vessel Core of India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor being transported & lowered into the safety vessel
India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into the safety vessel India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place
Core of India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor being transported & lowered into place Core of India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor being transported & lowered into place Core of India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor being transported & lowered into place
India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place India’s Fast Breeder Nuclear Reactor Core being transported & lowered into place

For further reading

India’s Three Stage Nuclear Programme

Fast Breeder Reactors

Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor [India]

Godspeed


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Russian Surface to Air Missile (SAM) Simulators

A name that leaves nothing to imagination, SAM (Surface to Air Missile System) Simulator puts you in the seats of the operator of various Soviet-era [Russian] SAM batteries. The Missiles & Radar’s control panel consoles are said to be a detailed & accurate replica of the real thing & looked quite intimidating [to me :p] trying to imagine people operating them. Tried my hands at operating a SA-2 [Divina] missile battery. Am yet to shoot down anything, even in the simulation mode. India being one of its former-operators [as also the Pechora], my admiration & respect for our men in uniform increases by unquantifiable magnitude as I try out this simulator & realizing the level of skills & their proficiency they needed [& still need, in spite of all the automation introduced in SAM radars] to posses to keep us safe and sound within our country.

20100112samsimulator01

The developers have promised to add more SAM battery consoles with each new version. A very interesting and quite an addictive addictive sim, if I may add.

It is a Windows-based software & can only work at a monitor resolution of 1280x1024.

Should watch the tutorial videos to give you a heads-up [though as I am finding out – not by much] on the simulator.

Video tutorials: SAM Simulator Software

SA-2 Part 1Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6a, Part 6b, Part 7

SA-3 Part 1, Part 2

Please note that as stated by the developers, it is not a Game. It is as real a simulator as possible to give you a feel of what it is like be bestowed with the power to shoot down any aircraft that your radar detects & develop the necessary skills to play GOD.

h/t Rock, Paper, Shotgun

Godspeed


Thursday, January 07, 2010

Space Agencies & Manned Moon missions: International Astronautical Congress 2009

In a plenary sessions at the International Astronautical Congress organized by the International Astronautical Federation held a few months back in South Korea, representatives of various Space agencies talked about their planned human missions to the Moon. Speakers in this session included representatives from Canada’s CSA, European Union’s ESA, India’s ISRO, Japan’s JAXA, South Korea’s KARI, USA’s NASA & Russia’s Federal Space Agency [Roscosmos]. During their talk, each one of them spoke about their proposed human missions to the Moon [either collaborative or stand-alone] including their work towards developing enabling technologies to achieve this that would include sending unmanned mission to the lunar surface as a precursor to the eventual targeted manned mission to the Moon.

Duration: 59 minutes

Of special interest was the talk give by ISRO’s Dr. V Adimurthy. In his talk he touched upon India’s eventual manned mission to the moon as also the much-nearer-in-the-future maiden manned space flight through the Low Earth Orbit scheduled for 2015 & the Chandrayaan-II mission scheduled for 2013. Not restricting itself just to the the Moon, he also touched upon India’s planned missions much further into the Space, including mineralogical exploration & targeting Comets headed towards Earth. Not surprisingly most of the participants in this plenary session referred to the successful, albeit slightly premature, completion of the Chandrayaan-I mission & successful completion of their own experiments as part of the payload onboard the Chandrayaan-I mission.

Posting some of the interesting screenshots from Dr. Adimurthy’s talk.

Click on the images to view larger-sized image

Speakers in the plenary session - Human Lunar Exploration Dr. Adimurthy of the Indian Space Research Organisation India's future lunar missions including Chandrayaan-II &
India's Launch Vehicles - PSLV[R] & GSLV[L] India's human-rated launch vehicles being developed for manned mission India's maiden manned Space mission - Earth orbital mission to orbit the Low Earth Orbit [LEO]
India's human-rated launch vehicle based on the GSLV Mk II India's mission beyond the Moon - Mars, Venus, Asteroids Social Welfare & development-oriented objective of India's Space programme

h/t SuperNova

In another session at IAC 2009, South Korea's first Astronaut, Yi So-Yeon gave an anecdotal account of her experience in Space including her selection process from among 36000 other South Koreans. Made for quite an interesting viewing.

What it is like being an Astronaut [Duration: 43 minutes]

Godspeed


Sunday, January 03, 2010

Pictures of PAK-DA, Russian long range Bomber Aircraft

Not much gets written about Russia’s development of a new generation long-range strategic bomber aircraft under the project name PAK-DA. If the few bits & pieces of news that appear are to be believed this new aircraft, said to incorporate stealth technology extensively among other awesomeness', is to be inducted in the Russian Air Force during the 2025-2030 timeframe with its first flight test to be held around 2017.

Some speculative artists impressions of the PAK-DA aircraft floating around on the Internet since a long time. Depending on which picture you look at, these pictures seem to have been created using either the Su-34 or the Tu-160 as the base reference.

Click on the pictures to view larger-sized image

PAK-DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAK-DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAK-DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAK-DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAK-DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft
PAK DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAK DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAK DA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAKDA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft PAKDA Strategic Russian long-range Bomber Aircraft

 

h/t China Military Report

Meanwhile, the workhorse of USAF’s bombing duties the B-52 Stratofortress is expected to serve for almost a centaury, while its newest long-range, possibly unmanned, Bomber Aircraft is to be inducted around the year 2037, last one to be inducted had been the B-2 Spirit.

Speculative pictures of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter in Thunderbird colours - Here

Speculative pictures of the PAK-FA [the base design for India’s FGFA] - Here

Godspeed


Saturday, January 02, 2010

Suggested reading for the weekend – 2010.01.02

Pragati - The National Interest Review If you haven’t heard of it already, then I’d most earnestly urge that you read Pragati. It is a free, online, monthly magazine brought out by The Indian National Interest portal. Going through various periodicals & websites for my daily hit of News, I can safely say that matters concerning India is most objectively & pragmatically covered by the magazine in an easy to assimilate manner. The best thing I like about the magazine, is that it does not adhere to or promote any particular ideology [left of centre, centrist, right of centre] & its more than ready to call spade a spade if saying so is in the greater interest of India – not something that could be said with conviction about other publications in the country.

Do make it a point to read the blogs that are part of The Indian National Interest portal, covering various spheres of India’s Interest [okay what else would a portal that calls itself “The Indian National Interest” cover :rolleyes:] – highly enriching experience.

The AcornPragmatic EuphonyVarmanThe Gold StandardRetributionsPolaris - The Broad Mind - Raja-Mandala

Another blog that used to appear under the NI umbrella but has now started its own portal – Offstumped. Have yet to come across another blog/portal that espouses the right of centre ideology with more sensibility & intelligence [except for the part covered by ZIM  just my VHO :)].

Another blog not under the Offstumped portal but belonging to one of the member – offstumped.wordpress.com.

If you so desire, you may also purchase the print version of the Pragati, they’ve recently started publishing – not a bad choice if you looking to subscribe to a new periodical.

Download link to the latest edition of Pragati [1.7 MB PDF]

Godspeed