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12 REASONS WHY MOBILE APP STARTUPS FAIL

It might be pretty unbelievable but most of the startups investing in mobile app development are not able to set foot in the market from the very outset. Though the number of mobile apps are growing at an increasing rate, but the revenue from each are falling gradually.

According to Gartner (An American Information Technology research and Advisory company) statistics reveal that:

“In 2009, worldwide mobile app downloads amounted to approximately 2.52 billion and are expected to reach 268.69 billion in 2017.”

Hence with such a vast user base and thousands of devices being in circulation, there are innumerable app developers who wish to create the next best mobile app in the market but are unable to do so. Most of the new apps that are developed gain no or very little attraction and the mobile app startups fail miserably.

Why?

It is important to understand the following factors which cause this to happen so that an app developer can keep it in mind before developing his next successful app.

1.Wrong business model:

According to Gartner, “Less Than 0.01 Percent of Consumer Mobile Apps Will Be Considered a Financial Success by Their Developers Through 2018.” This is a depressing data in the world where people are using apps as pulleys to lift themselves and their business up. Neither focusing too much on technology is good nor on marketing. There must be a clear line of separation between the technology organization and the product organization. The right pricing must also be determined to keep the product competitive.

2.Premature marketing strategy:

In case of any business, marketing plays a vital role in taking the business to great heights. Failing to own a strong and well-knit marketing strategy will automatically prevent the product or service to fail no matter how good it is. App developers often concentrate more in developing and executing the app overlooking the marketing process which in turn makes the app a failure. Often neglecting the market competition leads to slow adaptability with the market reality. Therefore people with the right skill-set and the right vision must be given the task to get the app enough promotion.

3.Research of already existing apps:

The owner must make sure of gathering as much information as possible about the competing/similar apps already available in the app market, and analyze their differences. Slowness in app launching or launching it too early without standard publicizing may also prove fatal. It is the owner’s responsibility to launch an app that is different from other existing apps in its own way which will mark its uniqueness. He must also pay attention to the fact that how much better his app is serving its users than the other apps. Along with an exclusive name an app must also be useful to its users to sustain in the market for a longer period. Name can be anything, but it should just be catchy enough for people to remember it.

4.Poor app design:

Statistics reveal that around 8 percent of all app submissions on various operating systems fail or are rejected only because they have a bad design. Bad designing basically means that the app is not user friendly. This results in the app not being able to create an impact as expected and the app gets discarded immediately and fails miserably. A successful and well-designed app must have a proper user interface, high resolution, perfect placing of buttons and must offer a good user experience.

5.Undefined target audience:

Any app is built for a specific audience of users. The better it’s specified, the fewer are the chances to make a half-baked product. Thus the developer must see the needs, the goals of the app, the problems it will solve – and thus the most needed features will be defined and implemented. A startup owner has to think of mobile customers in the first place.

6.Consistency of the app:

If an app does not perform equally well on various devices, operating systems or networks, users become frustrated and often the mobile app fails. An app developer should update and test his app from time to time and ensure that the app works on all spectrum smoothly. This will also ensure maximum performance and user satisfaction.

7.Too many co-founders :

Some times too many co-founders add a lot of confusion with too many suggestions and ideas which not only delays the process but also results in the app’s failure. Again on the other hand a single co-founder lacking leadership qualities, can act as a silent killer too. Thus it is better to have not more than two co-founders who must have mutual understanding as well as free will on each others’ ideas. And in case of a single co-founder he must possess all the qualities of a good leader who is capable of guiding his team to win success.

8.Expecting too much:

It is very obvious as well as positive to have expectations. But expectations shall never be great. Especially in case of Gaming apps the app owners must not have too much of expectations. It is necessary for the owner to keep in mind that people will not play a game lifelong, they will gradually get bored of it at one point. Whereas Games launched for any series or movie promotion are nothing other than gimmick. Such apps tend to fade away in the competitive market in no time. Hence it is better not to invest in such short term ventures.

9.Updates:

The App market is changing at a constant pace. As per customer requirements the app trend too keeps changing. That is why the developer must be quick and resolute to make a decision that will push the startup higher, react and adapt efficiently and quickly, be ready for changes in the plan. If apps are not tested frequently, not marketed rapidly and and not continuously delivered it will not be able to reach the desired success.These changes may not be that radical; but it’s never bad to be prepared. A good app developer shall not prolong the next release and instead focus on frequent updates and bug fixes making the app reliable and favorable.

10.Flawed customer support:

To figure out the reasons behind the failure of an app, it is important to pay attention to the user’s comments. The feedback that a developer gets from its app users explains it all. Genuine users are particular to leave comments which can help a developer realize what is truly wrong with the app and how it can be saved from drowning. User’s point of view can also help revive a drowning app and make it a favorite among the users if only the comments and feedback received are taken into proper consideration.

11.Security (Too Much or Too Less):

Even in case of a highly attractive app if there are too many layers that the user has to pass through to access his/her data then chances of that app to survive automatically diminishes and probably soon it gets replaced by another one. Whereas if on the other hand there are no security protocols followed, then the users may not be able to trust the app and the data feed in the app at all. As in case of Banking apps there are usually a number of security checkpoints which generally irritates the user. Hence it is important for the app makers to strike a balance in the security systems, instead of hyping it up or completely neglecting it.

12.Not every idea is that great, and not every failed idea means failure:

The development and execution of an app is vital and forms the app’s basis come what may. Ideas which are inferior and fails an app to create an effect on the users are the ones that the developer should instantly be done away with. As the developer will only end up wasting both time and money on developing a useless app. The startup owner must be sure to gather as much information as possible about the competing/similar products, and analyze their differences. Slowness in app launching or launching it too early without standard publicizing may prove fatal. The idea needs to be closely scrutinized and checked for actual potential before one starts working on it.

Wrapping Up:

These are twelve reasons why a mobile app startup may fail in the app market. Following only these notions does not guarantee success – there are many other factors that may tip the scales against you. And the percentage of failed startups is high. As for instance sometimes it is sheer luck which changes the destiny of a single app. A lot of it is affected by unfortunate timing. If an app is launched on a Monday morning, during a period when there is a money crunch prevailing in the country’s economy or in case of a gaming app if it is launched during the exam seasons in such cases the app does not meet the expected target. In such situations it is found no matter how nicely the app is done it never picks up, it just gets lost in between the millions of other apps.

But this is business, and moving on, keeping these things in mind, will increase your chances for success in the mobile market. Ignorance of even a single issue can be the reason for the failure of a startup business and mobile strategy.
What are your personal experiences? Do put them in the comments below – I would love to hear them !

Slow and steady wins the race.

The Amazing Chinese Bamboo Tree

Recently I came across a small story which is quite famous. The Chinese Bamboo seed is planted in the mud. Constant watering the seed is essential. Fertilizers are put in, but no matter what, very little seems to happen the first year. Despite your efforts, only a tiny shoot pokes out of the ground.

You do the same for 2nd year. Nothing happens. You feel perhaps two years of effort are lost.

3rd year, nothing happens.

4th year, nothing as well.

5th year, nothing. You seem to lose patience.

This continues to 8th year.

Then, suddenly after 8 years of fertilizing & watering, the bamboo tree sprouts & grows 30 ft in just 3 months!

Did the little tree lie dormant for years only to grow exponentially in the 8th year? Or, was the little tree growing underground, developing a root system strong enough to support its potential for outward growth in the fifth year and beyond? The answer is, of course, obvious. Had the tree not developed a strong unseen foundation it could not have sustained its life as it grew.

These days most people don’t have the capacity to focus on something long enough to make it work. If it’s easy, it won’t last. How big are your dreams? Are you willing to do what it takes?

Had the Chinese bamboo farmer dug up his little seed every year to see if it was growing, he would have stunted the tree’s growth.

Here is a poem by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow that is as true today as it was when he wrote it over 100 years ago:

“The heights by great men reached and kept
Were not attained by sudden flight,
But they, while their companions slept,
Were toiling upward through the night.”

Dear Startups, What are you actually selling?

A question comes to my mind which I always want to ask to all startups.

Dear Startups,

What are you really selling? Is it a product or a service? Or your own company ?!

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When I was a child, I never knew what a start up was. I only new business, businessman, customer, buy, sell, expenses, income.

Today’s jazzy world has come up with fancy names for everything. To start with, some of them are: Entrepreneur, Startups, Meetups, B2B, B2C, VC, Angel Investors etc and what not! A mere Google would reveal hundreds of them. Look for yourself : http://www.forbes.com/sites/kateharrison/2014/08/29/40-start-up-jargon-words-you-need-to-know-to-raise-money/

I said to myself: wow, People have so much energy to bash around the jargon lingo, I wonder if they put the same into customer relationships and better service!

Honestly, until a few years ago, I didn’t know what was B2B and B2C – I guess I am only a third generation businessman ( My father being second and grandfather being the first generation ). I am yet to learn the tricks of 4th gen kids!

Almost all big companies in today’s world have a customer care. We as a consumer just hate their template based replies, don’t we ? Why not focus your energy on building something beautiful and substantial. There’s no marketing better than word of mouth. Look at Google, do they need to market their search engine ? Any kid learning the internet goes to Google as his first website! Word of mouth peeps!

“Many business people focus on what is static, black and white. Yet great algorithms can be rewritten. A business process can be defined better. A business model can be copied. But the speed of execution is dynamic within you and can never be copied. When you have an idea, figure out the pieces you need quickly, go to the market, believe in it, and continue to iterate.”

Wise words from Gurbaksh Chahal, the founder of Radium One – but sadly, I do not find many startups paying much heed to it. People sit on perfectly good business ideas for too long, and are then in a mad, mad rat race to outsmart its ‘perceived’ rivals. And then, when their startups start moving south, they wonder – “Where did we go wrong?” Well, Sir and Madam, plenty of points.

Today’s startups are more about fundraising than actual work. What’s the big hullabaloo over ‘raising X million dollars’ via IPO?

Why as a customer I should worry about how much money you make. This is a false psychology built up in the mind of the customer. New reports like X company raised Y million dollars makes the public think “wow, they raised so much money, they might be a good idea”.

Rather focus on your core strengths. I don’t say marketing is wrong, but excess marketing without a firm backbone will leave you in a lurch.

Get this – you are not Jack Ma (you might become one day, but that day is not now), and no one is interested in knowing how much your startup has managed to raise. Stop showing off with such flaky announcements – and instead, try to focus on building a stronger base first. You may ask me that for building a stronger base – You need investment – Well, you’re right – You do need investment, but now a days where is most of the investment going? Not all funding are bad or should be avoided but its just that the hype now a days is just overrated!

“You need to know where you stand in a business at all times. Measure everything, because everything that is measured and watched improves.”

                                                                                — Bob Parsons (Founder, Go Daddy)

But, dear startup owners, most of you are too fond of over-analyzing things. As unpleasant as it sounds, for a company in its nascent stage – advanced accounting concepts like ‘valuation’ and ‘payback period’ and ‘MVP’ and ‘discounted payoff’ really do not matter. Even if you spend (read: waste) your time and resources to calculate them, the figures would be a fraction of that of the market-leaders. Why bother?

There is a simple saying – Don’t count your chicken’s before they hatch. Right now you not only count your chickens, but also count the chickens from the chickens! You’re just overdoing it guys!

I am not suggesting that business figures and metrics need not be monitored though. When you are gradually building up a company from scratch, estimate the following two figures:

  • Cost of Acquisition (COA)
  • Lifetime Value of Acquisition (LVA)

(And yes, put all the other complex calculations on the back-burner).

Accept projects for which LVA > COA, and run a mile from those for which the reverse is true. Bit by bit, your profit figures will grow, and after a few years, you can turn your attentions to more in-depth indicators of your company’s accounting health.

Next up, what’s with the overwhelming urge to go out of your way to please customers? Don’t for a minute think that I am saying customer-satisfaction is not important (it is THE most critical factor), but do not go about providing free service to everyone under the sun. As a startup, you simply cannot afford to spend time, money and man-hours on a project, and not get paid in return. If a client does not ‘show you the money’, do not be at pains to show him/her your expertise.

Case in point: Xmarks, which offered free service for four years, and then went kaput – because it could no longer pay for its hosting expenses, and even failed to pay out salaries to employees. Don’t get into such a sticky mess.

Another example: There was a company called “Caltiger” which offered free internet in Calcutta in 1999-2000. Went for a toss when the model failed. What do we have to say about all the money lost?

Why I personally hate VCs ?

I simply hate VCs – Sorry but I do, but not all of them, there is a cattle class of VCs whom I dislike particularly. In my story, I once approached a VC who failed to look beyond. Honestly, VCs are bunch of people who don’t bother about anything than money. It doesn’t matter to them if the product / service is right or wrong. VCs are not businessmen, they are just opportunists. They have no interest in your company to nurture them. In my honest opinion, they are guys with lot of extra cash and have no plan what to do with it and hence look out for ideas of others and slowly suck everything out from it.

About 8 years ago, I was presenting my company to a bunch of investors/VCs. There were 100 other companies in that event doing the same. The VCs present there had immediate funding options. My pitch was rejected outright because they didn’t understand what I was doing! A blessing in disguise. About 5 companies were chosen for funding that day. I didn’t have any reactions at that time but now when I search for those company which got funded are all shut down and  have no presence. And about 5 odd companies are still alive from those 100 companies and I’m proud to say our company is one of them. Now when I look back, I think to myself – Those VCs weren’t actually smart enough.

The point being- Startups now a days aren’t selling anything like a service or a product really. The end product or service is just a bait to actually sell their own company. The commodity is their own company rather than a product. The name of the product is just a sham and this I simply cannot approve it! Not in my business ethics. A company is like your child and it makes no sense for me to sell it if its already doing good business. Dear startups, would you sell your child? Or is it that you’ve started a new business of producing children and selling them ?

Business is not just about making money. Its about who is making it and how dedicated and how passionate they are about it.

Startups like Nouncer whine about how ‘Twitter/Facebook stole their thunder’. Strangely though, there is no dearth of startup companies which do not think beyond getting acquired by a big, well-established company. They will, in all probability, lose their identity (sigh, Nokia, sigh!) – and disturbingly, they are not bothered about it at all. Dear startups, if you lose your brand name…you lose everything!

About a year back, the world of business was all abuzz about the $19 billion acquisition of  WhatsApp by Facebook. With all due respect to Mark Zuckerberg and his tremendous business acumen – was this acquisition a good thing for WhatsApp? On a personal front, I do not think so, since being viewed as ‘a Facebook product’ would hardly do WhatsApp any favor (except, perhaps, expand its reach globally).

The ease with which Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer is snapping up startups left, right and center seems even more weird. I mean, Ms. Mayer is strengthening the base of her company, but why are so many startups readily agreeing for the acquisitions? The fat paychecks from these deals have started a new trend – entrepreneurs are launching startups SOLELY TO COME TO THE NOTICE OF THE BIG PLAYERS – and selling them off for a nice, big sum. If this continues, that day won’t be far when the entire concept of ‘startups’ will get obliterated. Totally.

So, what is the right way to go about? For starters, resist the temptation (and the shortcut) of creating a company only for the sake of selling it. No one in the world can become a millionaire at 30 years of age, and remain so, only by selling his/her company to a big fish. Do not make products that impress the big-shot in your industry – and focus on customer preferences instead. The initial years will be difficult for a small fish in a big pond, but if you stick to your guns, your company can emerge as one of the big fishes.

“Do you want to be a small fish in a BIG POND, or a BIG FISH in a small pond?” – take a stand on this very, very carefully.

Although Coca Cola is one of the biggest companies in the world, there is a lot to learn for startups from it too. Just think – if the much-hyped and universally-hated ‘New Coke’ had not been withdrawn within 90-odd days – the company probably would not have survived till now. The key takeaway from this is, the makers were flexible and clever enough to understand that they had made an error. Coke Classic returned, and all was hunky-dory again.

“A good idea is not enough. Business aren’t just about ideas, businesses are about execution. Don’t get too enamored with your own idea.”

— Brian Sharples (Co-founder, HomeAway).

Strangely, this willingness to accept an error is lacking in many startup owners. Most newfangled entrepreneurs feel that their ideas are the best on earth – even when the chinks and cracks become apparent. Money is spent, resources are wasted, and employees are heckled, to run after impractical, unfeasible dreams. Every corporate leader makes mistakes – but only those who are smart enough to own up to them survive. Got my point?

As a startup owner, you can also face a myriad of other problems – ranging right from incompetent employees, lethargic partners and workplace conflicts, to unforeseen cash outflows, unfulfilled sales projections and competition from already well-established rivals. I would love to see you guys put up a fight, stay committed to your startup company – and you never know when you will be standing at the cusp of success.

“If you are doing something that has a universal, timeless need, then you need to think of the company in a timeless way.”

— Scott Heiferman (Co-founder, Meetup)

Bottom line? Any good act gets recognized, no matter how small it is. Keep doing your good work, focus on the things you really have to rather than getting attracted to do something large start with something small and one day you will definitely be rewarded !

Keep going, folks!

Apple iOS in-app purchase hacking – How to prevent specially com.zeptolab.ctrbonus.superpower1 hacks

Today I am going to list of various mechanism used by hackers to overcome our in-app purchase utility of one of our top apps in books section called “Story Time for Kids”

As you are aware apple stores each purchase receipts and allows developers an interface to verify each receipt before delivering the purchases (unlocking). Recently many jailbreakers have tried to hack into our system and unlock in-app content for free. I will discuss some very popular mechanisms and how we’ve tried to solve them:

1. Change the DNS of the iPhone. Hackers changed the DNS of the device and instead of redirecting the verification of purchase receipts to Apple servers, they could redirect it to their own custom server and send a custom verification. This way the app would get unlocked and no one would ever come to know. However, the good news is that Apple has patched this and now its kinda safe.

2. Change of DNS of the server side verification. If your in app purchase verifies the receipt via a server, then hackers could change the url via a firewall / middle-ware in between which could return a positive purchase of the unlockable item. There are many apps in Cydia who can do this and you as a owner will never come to know that the purchase was unlocked. Unfortunately there is no out of the box solution except your app keeps checking periodically with an online database if it was purchased or not.

3. Change of Product ID – Spoofing : Many jailbroken iOS devices just change the outgoing purchase receipt to an existing valid purchase receipt. (There are background apps to do this). Our server will then send this to Apple server for verification and guess what, apple will send a confirmation! A sheer good trick. But we’re smarter. Before sending the receipt for verification, unpack it (base64_decode) and extract out the product_id from it. Then check if the product_id is your genuine product or not. If not, just cancel it out. The most famous spoofed product id is :

com.zeptolab.ctrbonus.superpower1

If you encounter any product ID apart from your own, then simply block them. They are not genuine at all!

 

BB10 : BlackBerry 10 Review

So the much awaited BB10 is here finally!

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Thank you BB for sending us the devices to test and review. From the first looks what I could say is: Not bad! Not bad at all…!

From past several days, I just felt that BB guys will push up the same OS as the PlayBook but they have done a great job in modifying many parts of the OS to make it more native “Phone’s OS” rather than a tablet OS.( In the starting days, BB has just ported their PlayBook OS on BB10 devices, they had many references of the Playbook everywhere in the ported OS). Currently, they have not only revamped the entire look and feel, but also have added many more usability features which would make user feel good.

 

 

Things I like:

IMG_00000003The device doesn’t have any physical Home button, but rather a swipe from bottom to the screen would act as one. This is good, saves a lot of time. This feature was there in Playbook as well and I liked it then as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The back buttons for all the native settings apps and many more are below near the thumb, which is again a good advantage.

IMG_00000001The BlackBerry Hub: Most interesting part is that they have created an app (I’d rather call it as a separate desktop) which contains “All in one place” conversation app called “The BlackBerry Hub” which is really fascinating. The app cannot be killed or started, its always ON! Really really convenient for much of the conversations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_00000006BBM: The BBM is completely revamped and has a lot of exciting look and features.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_00000007Side slide menus: The menus slide in from both sides giving out extra options, which is very convenient as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_00000008Browser: The browser is again a great one which I feel is more optimized version of the Playbook browser. I would call it the most advanced browser throughout all browsers. It passes every standard test with flying colors. Not only that, in my personal experience, I have been surfing on this browser in and out and have compared it with iPhone/iPad and Android browsers, but the rendering speed and look and feel is totally awesome! Specially the old websites with malformed HTML is also taken care of. Highly commendable job!

 

 

 

 

IMG_00000014AppWorld: BlackBerry guys have been very active in getting their apps ported and has been involving the developers very much. They have even sent developers cash + devices to get their apps tested proper and encouragement to launch more apps. I’m sure there are plenty of apps for the new device. Not to forget, BB has a very straight procedure of running Android apps on BB10 platform which will encourage many more developers to port their apps. Previously, BB10 Development was a big pain and developers like us wanted to move away, but this BB10 will give us enough flexibility to develop more and more apps and games!

 

 

 

IMG_00000011 This is our app on BB10!

Global search is another great feature, helps you search just anything on your phone.

Background apps is also great feature – but the apps do not run on background, they just go to the background (pause) mode.

Camera tools are great, they provide facility to modify the image. Lets say you shoot a picture and your eyes are closed at the very moment, you can go back 1-2 seconds and edit that portion of the eye. Good tool..!

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Big Keyboard: Really comfortable in typing. There is a ring which allows pointers to be placed properly at the exact place you’d like to .(This is more comfortable than in iPhone / Android ). The special feature is auto complete are at dynamically placed on the keys itself , rather than moving your finger to another place to auto complete, you can just swipe above the key and let it complete it for you. You’ll have to use this feature to see how it feels!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is our Flash site looks on BB10!

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Screenshot of Calendar

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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System Settings

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Things I do not like:

There is no great support for customize your phone. Its more like a professional phone and lacks a lot of fun side to it. I’m sure this is not a hardware constraint but the new updates to the OS would take care of it.

The starting of apps (initialization) is a bit laggy and makes the user wait for at-least 1second. I do not quite like this specially with my personal device where I’m most impatient to do several things at a time.

Multi-tasking is just as bad as the iPhone. I thought it would be like Android and specially they could have innovated multi-window like what the Samsung guys did with their Note II.

Conclusion: I like the device and it will definitely solve the business purpose. Much better than 9800 (except the qwerty keyboard!). The only question is how well the users accept it in the already neck-to-neck smart-phone market – Only time will tell!

Life without Jagjit Singh…

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For all those of you reading the blog entry and know me already would know that I’m incomplete without Jagjit Singh. For those of you who don’t, now you know!

Jagjit Singh has been a passion in my life since the early days of my youth. I have enjoyed his music like any other person. May be one step further. I am a fan – an avid fan, a religious fan! Jagjit Singh’s music and choice of poetry has inspired me throughout my life. Now that he is gone, I miss him very much.

I have always tried to attend his concert while he came to Calcutta along with Ghulam Ali. I remember the concerts which I attended alone and with friends. I used to literally drag my friends.

Everyone in my family knows that I am passionate towards his music. Any song of his on tv, my parents would call me immediately. Any concert advertisement in the newspaper, everyone would call and inform me!

The first ever concert that I attended was in an open air auditorium in Calcutta called Nazrul Manch. I still remember dressing up and parking my first bike and entering the concert. I had only come to listen to Jagjit Singh but Ghulam Ali started first so obviously everyone had to wait. I have great respect towards Ghulam Ali as well, but lets just say Jagjit Singh is my favorite. Jagjit Singh always sat on a chair and never flat on ground/platform. The stage had to be re-designed immediately. It was such a pleasure. He performed magnificently!

Jagjit Singh was a real performer. When he saw his audience were a bit bored in between, he would then change the tune into a bit hip hop tip tap number and everyone would be back with him. At other times, he just cracked some joke on stage. His logic was that people have come to get entertained and its his duty to entertain them either by music and if not, may be some joke in between. What he delivered was worth all the money spent.

Jagjit always had a smile on his face. He was always jolly. Always cracked jokes even when someone went for an autograph. I remember taking his first autograph and I was surprised that he was a little short height-ed man. I never looked on TV but he was about in between 5’4″ or 5-8″.

I had once even visited the hotel he was staying and even talked to him on phone and have even written several fan letters to him. I had lots to say to him but then when he was before me, I fell short of words. I often remember his Ghazal’s words “Chaha tha ye kahenge, socha tha wo kahenge. Aaye jo saamne jab, kuch bhi na keh sake bas dekha kiye unhe hum” – (I thought I’d say this, I thought I’d say that, but when he came in front of me I fell short of words and just kept looking at him).

I remember once of his concerts where he had come from Delhi and one wouldn’t believe what had happened before. Jagjit Singh’s mother had expired and he came to the concert after finishing the final rituals of her own mother. As soon as the event organizer Mr Badal Dhar Choudhary heard about his mother’s death, he wanted to cancel the show, but Jagjit insisted that he would still perform. The show must go on… This kind of a person is Jagjit..

I just feel I miss him terrible now. I only have his memories from the past songs but I still miss his concerts and although he may not be there, but his songs are always on my lips..

I would like to end my post by famous words of Ghalib (again sung by Jagjit Singh). It goes like “Hui muddat ke Ghalib mar gaya par yaad aata hai, wo har ek baat par kehna ke yun hota to kya hota..”

A long time has passed since his death, but I still remember him. That on every small thing he would say this and that and what if and what if not..

Honour Killing : How many more indian youth will die?

I am not just sad but ashamed of the fact that in a country which gives secularism as a fundamental right to its citizen, incidents of ‘Honour Killing’ still occur, and in numbers.

So what is ‘Honour Killing’? Taken from wikipedia: :”Honour Killing is the homicide of a member of a family or social group by other members, due to the belief of the perpetrators that the victim has brought dishonor upon the family or community. Honor killings are directed mostly against women and girls, but have been extended to men”

Its only recently that these incidents have come to limelight, but I am sure that A Romeo & Juliet story repeats every month(in the news of course, 100s go unnoticed) with a tragic ending.

Let the view points of family disagreements be taken in consideration;
Let the view points of the couple-in-love be taken in consideration;

Who’s to blame, who’s right or wrong? Who’s to judge?

A impulsive decision taken by the the couple flames anger among family and the heat reaches the couple. Its really obvious that the couple’s blood is warmer than their parents, resulting in a bigger flame. No matter what, the end is always tragic.

Most of today’s youth don’t care for their parents. But the is the reverse also not true?

All parents want their children to stand first in class, but there is one and only one first position. Who is to be blamed? Generation Gap? Communication Gap or Society’s pressure?

No matter what, the end is always tragic.

I just fail to believe that the one who bears the child for nine month inside her could one day kill the same just because they chose a life partner without their consent? I also fail to believe that some youngsters chose extravagant life partners which parents are bound to deny. I have also come across parents who think children as their own property. I have come across children who take parents as a liability. Nevertheless, it all boils down to some tragic moments which this age (both oldies and youngsters included) fail to understand.

So what’s the solution?

Talk.

Talking helps a lot. Talking leads to sharing of ideas, sharing of emotions, sharing of feelings. This leads to understanding which leads to a bonding. Most of the parent-children relation today involves least amount of talking and mostly assumption. Assumption, Miscommunication and EGO are the most satanic effects on any relationship. It dilutes the blood. Blood becomes less thicker than water.

So talk your problems! Take it out of the system. Speak, but listen too because the other also want to be heard.

In today’s mean world, society acts as a catalyst in fuming reactions. Many a times it has been observed that parents might not be opposed to the Child’s dream but the society would pressurize the entire family. I have heard several parents killing their own will when it comes to ‘showing face’ in the society. Do not let society bother you. Remember, society suffers from Amnesia. They will soon forget what they said or did.

Lastly, I humbly request parents and youngsters of my age – Be reasonable. Do not be stubborn. Sometimes its better to lose a battle to win others’ love. Both of you are important for the future generation to come. If you fight among yourselves, who will take care of the all so cool coming soon “NextGen” ?!

Google Search by Image API

Google hasn’t officially released its new search by image API so I thought of researching and writing a small article on how one can use this searching technique in their custom web, desktop and mobile apps.

Here’s a quick analysis first. Basically you replicate what the browser does for you and scrape the response.

Search Location: http://www.google.co.in/searchbyimage/upload

Request Headers:
Host: www.google.co.in
User-Agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 5.1; rv:6.0.2) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/6.0.2
Accept: text/html,application/xhtml+xml,application/xml;q=0.9,*/*;q=0.8
Accept-Language: en-us,en;q=0.5
Accept-Encoding: gzip, deflate
Accept-Charset: ISO-8859-1,utf-8;q=0.7,*;q=0.7
Connection: keep-alive
Referer: http://www.google.co.in/imghp?hl=en&tab=ii
Cookie: PREF=ID=1d7bc4ff2a5d8bc6:U=1d37ba5a518b9be1:FF=4:LD=en:TM=1300950025:LM=1302071720:S=rkk0IbbhxUIgpTyA; NID=51=uNq6mZ385WlV1UTfXsiWkSgnsa6PdjH4l9ph-vSQRszBHRcKW3VRJclZLd2XUEdZtxiCtl5hpbJiS3SpEV7670w_x738h75akcO6Viw47MUlpCZfy4KZ2vLT4tcleeiW; SID=DQAAAMEAAACoYm-3B2aiLKf0cRU8spJuiNjiXEQRyxsUZqKf8UXZXS55movrnTmfEcM6FYn-gALmyMPNRIwLDBojINzkv8doX69rUQ9-

You can ignore most of the above and use standard HTTP headers of a normal browser or CURL it.

What’s important is the multipart form data which gets posted to the Search Location Above:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The HTML form below posts everything for you, results of which you could scrap and use it for your app.

<html>
<body>
<form action = “http://www.google.co.in/searchbyimage/upload” METHOD=”POST” enctype=”multipart/form-data”>
<input type =”file” name = “encoded_image”>
<input type=”Submit” name = “Search” value = “Search”>
<input type = “hidden” name = “h1″ value =”en”>
<input type = “hidden” name = “safe” value =”off”>
<input type = “hidden” name = “bih” value =”800″>
<input type = “hidden” name = “biw” value =”1280″>
<input type = “hidden” name = “image_content” value =””>
<input type = “hidden” name = “filename” value =””>
</form>
</body>
</html>