• Economy

    Virtual Cards – A safe way to purchase online

    Whether it is from Amazon India or Flipkart or Snapdeal or Aliexpress, I buy from all of them a lot and regularly – bordering on making me an online shopaholic. Credit Card vs Debit Cards I prefer to use Credit Cards instead of Debit Cards. Let me be clear, credit card interest rates are brutal and horrific. I don’t use the credit offered by Credit Cards beyond the free 30 day period – I ensure I settle 100% (sometimes round it off over and above) of the amount due on receipt of the statement every month. With Credit Cards, the dispute/deniability of a fraudulent transaction (say done online) is a…

  • Apps,  Technology

    An open letter to Facebook - what is a story, and do we need it?

    Dear Facebook, Please understand that not everyone is as smart as your product managers, I am certainly NOT. I don’t understand the #UI for “Your Story” feature on the web. When I see a notification that a friend has posted a new story, I click and I get a weird looking “mobile” like window which goes away even before I can read the whole post or story or text or whatever you are calling it today. And, if I reply to a story, I am unable to figure out where it went. If the “Story” is having a video, why am I not given any of the controls – to mute, to…

  • Lounge,  Technology

    .EU domains are only for EU residents!

    Just last month I was all praises of the European Union for its pioneering work in framing laws that protect the interest of online users with #GDPR, and, for announcing a bug-bounty to find security holes in the Open Source software it uses including VLC Player, 7-Zip, Filezilla, KeePass, Notepad++ and others. But this week’s guidance from UK government for owners of .EU domains is not encouraging. It appears that .EU domains can only be bought by EU residents and UK residents who already have a .EU domain may be sued or get kicked out post #Brexit. Registrars including GoDaddy are already implementing the rules. In the past I had…

  • Apps,  Technology

    Why I am trying Brave Browser and reverted to Google Chrome?

    In the olden days, life was simpler – browsing online meant using the inbuilt Internet Explorer on Windows and Safari on Mac OS X. Then came Google Chrome, moving the entire web browser space to high gear it changed everything. Microsoft IE and Firefox became casualties of Chrome’s success. Till a few weeks ago, I was “happy” with Microsoft Edge as my default browser, and in the few cases where a site (mostly Government & Google’s own) had issues with Edge I used Google Chrome. But now, with Edge moving to Chromium rendering engine I was curious about how browsers based on Chromium rendering engine will differ from Google Chrome.…

  • Technology

    Google Plus and making secure products

    Even though I thought that the “Don’t be evil” mantra of Google was nothing more than a brilliant marketing slogan, I always admire(d) the company for its engineering and security prowess. They are way ahead of Apple and even Facebook when it comes to their software expertise. In that context, it is sad that this company too is reacting to a security vulnerability than being proactive. While I feel for the loss of Google+, the only competitor (at the time of its launch) to the monopoly of Facebook, no one will be missing it. As a Google Pixel user, I am disappointed that the changes announced to Android privacy/app scrutiny…