Categories
Technology

Bill Gates Explains The Internet to David Letterman in 1995

It’s almost unbelievable how far the internet has come. Letterman has a good point for 1995 … there wasn’t a whole lot out there for the common man. Very niche. Lots of “nerdy” things for the techy guys.

Now? Google knows what I’m about to search for. It’s crazy.

Not to mention the speed and bandwidth increase. No one in 1995 would have believed it would be possible to stream movies day and night over a telephone wire. Probably not even Gates.

Categories
Movie Reviews

Watch Top Gun: Maverick on the big screen – Reminiscing the last Hollywood movie star, Tom Cruise

Top Gun: Maverick is the latest film from Hollywood’s first true superstar, Tom Cruise. The movie was supposed to release in 2019, but the pandemic had other plans for the movie.

Recently, I caught a show of Top Gun: Maverick on the Star Cineplex, and this is why you should watch Top Gun: Maverick on the biggest screen you can find around you.

Before talking about Top Gun: Maverick, let’s first discuss how Top Gun, the original film of 1986, was quintessential in shaping an entire generation of marines and navy pilots.

Top Gun was released on May 16, 1986. Initially, the film received mixed reviews from film critics as it was a completely different film from the other films that came out in 1986, including the likes Aliens, Blue Velvet, and Pretty in Pink. The Karate Kid Part II and Ferris Bueler’s Day Off.

An attire that inspired generations to wear aviators from Top Gun (1986)

Despite being vastly different than other films and initial mixed critical reaction, the film was a huge commercial hit, grossing $357 million against a production budget of $15 million. In fact, Top Gun was 1986’s biggest hit!

Top Gun: Maverick – A sequel that was 36 years in the making

Top Gun: Maverick came out 36 years later after the first film. Many were skeptical about how it would connect to a newer audience and how people would receive a sequel of a highly inspirational film that came out 3 decades ago.

The release for Maverick was pushed back several times due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Upon asking him about streaming, he said – “That was not going to happen ever,” Cruise said. “That was never going to happen.” And rightly so. I had forgotten how much I enjoyed non-comicbook movies like this for a long time. Thanks to Tom Cruise and Top Gun – I got the feeling back after a long time!

Soaring High with Top Gun: Maverick

Boy, I was wrong! Top Gun: Maverick just crossed $800M worldwide, collecting an enormous $800M worldwide with great reviews from critics and audiences alike. Crossing that milestone, the movie ranks as the highest-grossing film in Tom Cruise’s career. The movie has even grossed more than Doctor Strange: Multiverse of Madness.

The most memorable part of Top Gun: Maverick is the scenes of flying planes. As you probably know – every plane scene, dogfight, and tactical maneuvers of the pilots. Tom Cruise has shot his stunts himself, like always. They shot about 800+ hours of footage, the same as 3 Lord of the Rings movie footage. 

Image from Hollywood Reporter

This movie’s best part is easily putting practical effects to the forefront with visceral analog action over the usual numbing of CG fakery. A choice that saw having the actors in the airborne cockpits during shooting.

However, the movie itself tells a compelling story. It makes you nostalgic about the past movie but doesn’t overdo it. It takes just the essential parts to get the story going. Mike Teller as Goose’s son, “Rooster,” is a very well-written character. Jennifer Connelly, as his love interest, was also excellently portrayed.

If you were wondering why there’s no “Take my breath away” of Berlin in Top Gun: Maverick like me — the director gave a plausible answer — 

Take My Breath Away is an incredible song, but it’s really connected with that relationship (between Tom Cruise and Kelly McGillis), you know? So for Maverick and Penny, we needed something new. Lady Gaga wrote this song for us that, as you said, from the first time I heard it, I was like, ‘Well, this is just a classic song. It’s got a great melody.’ And when Hans Zimmer heard it, he was like, ‘I can build the love theme of the movie off this.’ That’s why you see Lady Gaga has a credit with Hans and Harold (Faltermeyer) at the beginning, because that song became the melody for the love theme used orchestrally throughout the film.

I loved his explanation. The movie’s third act is incredible, with a splendid background score from Hans Zimmer that keeps you wondering what will happen next.

I think Top Gun: Maverick is an incredible feat with practical effects, a fantastic story, a well-written script, and, best of all – an incredible screenplay! You don’t have to worry about spoiling the movie and can say, “It’s a movie like the last one,” yet it packs a magnificent punch with background score, script, screenplay, action, cast choice, and overall direction!

Tom Cruise: Hollywood’s last real movie star

While the CGI business has improved significantly in the last decade, showing us nothing is impossible – it also makes things somewhat boring. For example, if the plane scenes were shot in CGI – you would have never caught the “errors” that one’s face makes when you are in high altitude.

Tom Cruise’s commitment to practical effects has made him a franchise himself. When you go into a Tom Cruise movie, you know you expect real stuff – as real as it gets, and you expect Tom to do them. And he does it every fu#!ing time! He delivers!

The absolute obsession about making things as authentic as possible is what makes Tom Cruise, in fact, Tom Cruise – Hollywood’s one of the dying breeds of true superstars.

And if you haven’t watched Top Gun: Maverick at the cinema yet – go and watch it. Once this movie is out of its run from theaters – you might never be able to feel magic the movie was able to create.

Categories
Movie Reviews

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness – Review without Spoilers

Multiverse of Madness is the first Marvel film that feels super fresh yet amazingly done. It doesn’t follow the same mantra like the other films. The film is fast, unpredictable and sometimes take some courses even you wouldn’t expect. Visuals are stunning and this time no fan service (1 extra point for that).

The film assumes you have watched all the other MCU movies and WandaVision and doesn’t waste time explaining for new visitors.

⚠️Watch WandaVision before watching this movie

One of the requirements of watching this movie is to finish WandaVision. The film is tightly coupled with the events that happens in the WandaVision.

If you go towards this film without seeing WandaVision before, then you will have trouble understanding the whole concept and why the protagonist is doing what the protagonist is doing.

Loved it. 💯💯💯

Quick. Fun. Horror-isque. This is a Sam Raimy film 👏

Categories
Personal

Reflecting back on 2021 – a year in review

Every year, I try to sum up my whole year in a blog post. The year in a review usually showcases some of the most significant things of the year to me ranging from friends, family, work and more. 2021 was a very unique year for me considering many things. This article tries to sum up those moments that had the most impact on me last year.

Starting the year 2021 with deep grief

My family and I were facing a very sad time at the start of the year. As I had mentioned in a previous blog post both in English and Bangla, I had lost my father this year.

This was very unexpected and came as a shock to us. My father was one of the greatest men I met in my entire life and losing that person, took a heavy toll on all of us. I still sometimes have nightmares, flashbacks of my dad. I regret why there wasn’t a bit more time.

He had the brain hemorrhage stroke on the 28th of December, 2020 and my new year started. He was in a coma for 3 months and died on March 22, 2021. I simplified the whole thing in a few lines but the journey was very tough for us. Whoever has lost someone close can relate to it.


The first couple of months of the new year was very hectic for me and my family. If you probably took care of someone sick — you would have known already. Since he was in a coma, someone from the family had to be with him always. My brother Toufiq Hassan, I, and one of my close relatives (who helps with us managing some home stuff) Jashim covered the shifts mostly in a week. Meanwhile, I was doing a full-time job at Poptin as well around that time. I’m thankful to the Poptin team that they were very supportive of the whole situation.

My father died on March 22, and we immediately went to Jessore, to our ancestral home for his burial. After 2 Janajah (one in Dhaka, one in Jessore) — we finally lowered him to his grave for eternal rest. May Allah SWT grant him Jannah.

Coping up with the new reality

Just when we were coping up with the new reality of living without my father, I slowly got to understand how many of the things my father took care of without us knowing. We never had to worry about electricity bills, utility bills, municipality taxes, collecting house rents, finding new people for rent, and more stuff.

This whole thing was a huge learning for me and I often had nights when I had a very tough time coping up with the grief and loss. This might have been the first year when I sometimes felt really low and cried my heart out. But yeah that’s life.


Getting my very own, MacBook Air M1.

When I joined Poptin last year, I had to buy a new MacBook. It was long before the M1 PRO and M1 MAX revolution that Apple put at the end of the year. After looking at the new MacBook Air at that time, and comparing it with the MacBook Pro with a touch bar — I felt I’d be better off with the Air.

I like fanless and compact stuff. MacBook Air was definitely the best choice for me and it is still a very capable machine for most of my things.

MacM1
My first, very own, MacBook Air M1

I opted for Air M1, 16GB RAM. After using almost 8 months or so, I can vouch for its performance and it hasn’t let me down ever since. I was amazed at how good the ARM64 migration was done via Rosetta. Apple has fundamentally changed computers, forever.

Doing a full re-design of an existing plugin with 20K+ users, MyStickyElements

As a Product Manager, my strength is not in designing. However, I started the year with almost a redesigned version of the old MyStickyElements plugin which already had 20K+ users at that time. I designed the whole thing in Figma. This helped me to have more skills in Figma and figured out Auto Layout this year. Even since I figured it out, I had been an avid fan of the feature.

We released this plugin on 18th June 2021. We did a total revamp of the existing UI/UX and each element was re-designed (custom element, workflow, button changes, animation, preview, hover, etc). One of the tough things was to make it familiar to existing users, and also make it refreshing and easier to use for new & existing users.

Of course, much feedbacks from others came along and helped me to do the workflow right. And we had to ensure every feature works like it was before. The testing and fixing of small things almost took 1.5 months: after the plugin was ready with 2 months development. Happy it’s out there.

The plugin had been receiving a lot of great reviews as well. (Thanks to our incredible support team! 💪)

Planning my wedding reception amidst the pandemic

Last year, on December 11, my Nikah was done with my wife, Tanjim Binte Kuyum. But there were still the official wedding ceremony and wedding reception remaining. This year, around May, I thought about preparing for the wedding & reception.

However, things were not as simple. There was a date planned, we took all the preparation for that date, and right before 2 days – the event was postponed due to an extension of lockdown in Bangladesh. So I had to some running between different family members, different wedding organizers and things like that.

After the first time, we planned it the second time. Fortunately, it was alright this time.

Saif Wedding Ceremony
A F.R.I.E.N.D.S Theme’d Wedding

I had done a F.R.I.E.N.D.S themed wedding and shared one of my wedding photos on Reddit.

To my surprise, the photo was shared almost 100+ times with 2K upvotes on Reddit.

Getting more skilled into time management, multitasking & cross-team collaboration

Premio Plugins has a lot of products including 5 WordPress products, 3 Shopify products, and 1 Wix product. We are also working on a great SaaS platform for 2022 which we’ll unveil shortly. All this product management meant I was more cautious about time management. This year, I started using a designated To-do app to organize things. I have been using Todoist mainly, but I often use Microsoft’s To-Do as well (I did a custom Slack integration through Zapier).

As a Product Manager – one has to do cross-team collaboration pretty frequently. However, previously At my previous company, I was looking after only 2 products. This year, I had to manage, and do cross-team collaboration for almost 9+ products of the Premio Plugins brand. All of this helped me to be more specific while communicating, being more collaborative while getting more productive and overall having better communication with others than I had last year. All of this, while being remote. Awesome, huh?

Cutting down social media usage

As you probably read before, I cut down on social media big time. All of this helped me to do better use of time and I saw my productivity go up throughout the year after cutting down on social media.

Also, I replaced some of my Facebook time with Reddit which is pretty great to find and join niche communities. I am loving it so far. 🙌

Losing my paternal uncle

After losing my father last year, things were still in the recovery phase as I mentioned earlier in the blog. However, this year, I lost my paternal uncle (চাচা/Bangla: Cha-Cha) which also was a massive disaster to our family.

The man who was getting the date is no more with us (Inna lillahi wa inna ilaihi rajun). The photo was taken at my Nikah

My uncle left behind 2 daughters and one son — all are still teens. If you are reading this article, I ask you to make dua for both my father and uncle as they had passed away this year.

Having some nice family moments

This year, I had some nice family moments as well with my own family and extended family. I went on a short tour at Srimangal, went to Jashore for a few days to meet and spend some time with my wife, and had some good time with my cousins, relatives, grand-parents & other family members along the way

Nature

Also, we celebrated our first anniversary as well 🎉

🎬 Consuming some nice movies & TV series

I love watching movies & TV series. This year was no different. Among the many movies and TV series I watched this year, here are some of my picks that you can also watch

  • Zack Snyder’s Justice League
  • Godzilla V Kong
  • Spiderman No Way Home
  • Shang-Chi
  • The Matrix Resurrection
  • Free Guy
  • Jungle Cruise
  • Brooklyn Nine-Nine (A new sitcom I fell in love this year)
  • Loki
  • WandaVision

(I watched a few more but kinda forgot about them lol)

👀 Looking Ahead

I’m 26 this year; empathy is not something people tend to achieve at 26. But that’s one of my goals in 2021. Having more empathy among other things. 🙂

Here’s a photo collage of different moments of the year (I spent only 5min on it LOL)

Also, I plan to get fit, which I had been planning to do for a while (among other things). Also, I’d love to grow more as a person both professionally and personally.

Categories
Personal

How I finally broke up with Facebook in 2021

How I finally found a viable solution to keep using Facebook for critical useful purposes and stop wasting time by endlessly scrolling

I have been using Facebook for a long time now. As far as I remember, the first time I opened Facebook was on 2008. At first, I didn’t have that many friends, and I didn’t use it that much. However, this became very useful to me and helped me to grow as a person because I had other sites to explore and find more about communities around the world (Remember forums? Yahoo! chat rooms?)

Many of my generation and later generation do not understand there is a whole Internet beside Facebook and that’s sad 🙁

I did not become that active on Facebook right away from 2008 to 2010. However, around 2011 I started using Facebook daily. As the mobile phone revolution was happening with Android and iOS going toe to toe — one platform was growing immensely, which was Facebook. When I got my first smartphone, Motorola Atrix, back in 2011 — one of the first apps I installed was Facebook. Since then, I had been using Facebook for a considerable amount of time every single fucking day (for no fucking reason!) I had been spending at least two or three hours pretty much for the last five or six years which even piqued to 5 hours in the last 3/4 years.


When I understood it was time to dial it down

In 2018, I first discovered that I was spending way too much time on Facebook doing absolutely nothing and scrolling my newsfeed endlessly. I thought about quitting Facebook, and I tried deactivating it a few times. However, as my close friends, some of my colleagues, a few Messenger conversation was always happening inside Facebook. Sometimes I had to log into Facebook, which really looped me in to use this platform even more. If you have used Facebook, you know once you are looped in, you spend an enormous amount of time even before you notice it.

So from 2018, I was trying to minimize my time on Facebook as much as possible. As some counter precautions, I started using Facebook from the default Safari browser, ditching the native app experience. I had been using Facebook with Safari on iOS since 2018, because I wanted to experience an inferior version of Facebook, so it discourages me from logging into it every time. I agree that the first few months were tough because everything is much smoother on the native Facebook app on both Android and iOS. And you miss out on some new features and stuff. Nevertheless, I made peace with it, and I kept using the browser version. One of the best things about the browser version is that Facebook cannot ask you for more permissions like camera access or things like that. You can always install some adblockers to minimize the tracking and enjoy some other privacy-focused features like cross domain protection of Safari.

Beginning 2021 with an aim to use Facebook absolutely minimum

Starting this year, I had hoped to do a few different things than previous years. I thought about quitting Facebook and replacing Facebook with some other platforms because I knew I could not leave Facebook. After all, some important things are happening over there. And I have to like log in sometimes. However, I wanted to severe my ties with Facebook as much as I could.

One of my resolutions for 2021 was to use as little Facebook as I could. Everyone read about the news how Facebook tracks it across different platforms, sells data, manipulate you (Cambridge Analytica) and do all sorts of stuff. So I wanted to get off this platform as soon as I could. I’m happy to let you guys know 2021 was a great success for me to break away from Facebook in a really good way.

I started 2021 by joining my new company Poptin where I had been working as a Product Manager, learning new stuff, doing new things and handling a lot of stuff. So this helped too. I could finally focus on more productive things than using Facebook for a long time.

Starting the year 2021

And that’s precisely what I did. Beginning of the year, I started to use Twitter and Reddit more and found my topics exciting topics On Twitter and Reddit communities that I love. Reddit and Twitter have helped me to find content that is more related to me, and that elevates me to learn something new and communicate with some people who have similar interests. This led me to find some great communities which helped me to improve my knowledge and perception of different scopes.

Switching from Browser to Friendly App

I don’t usually buy an iOS app until it’s excellent for me. I found the perfect Facebook app on iOS, which is Friendly. Friendly is an iOS app that helps you to browse Facebook and adds a few nifty features on top of it, like downloading images & videos, hide some stuff and blocking Facebook ads and trackers among other things. But the best thing about the app is it allows you to view your newsfeed by muting a few words which are not available on Facebook natively. This feature singlehandedly encouraged me to use this app over the Facebook on the Safari browser. I could quickly mute words and topics that I do not want to view on my news feed with Friendly. It helped me to have a clean Facebook experience, and an experience I want over what Facebook wants for me.


The final nail in the coffin

Earlier this year, I learned about a new tool on Chrome store that basically unfollows everyone including all Facebook pages, and all your Facebook friends. The extension encourages you to take control of your whole newsfeed.

I first knew about this tool because Facebook was trying to shut it down. When I heard in the news what Facebook was trying to do, it encouraged me even more. I was really curious to try it out. And that’s what I did. I installed the unfollow Facebook extension and in a few minutes I found how to unfollow everyone with single click.

Taking the Red pill

When I was standing on the screen where I can click and unfollow everyone, it was kind of a red pill/blue pill situation from the movie The Matrix. It required a little bit of courage from me to push that button. But I stood up to my decision and I pressed the button that unfollowed every friend, every page, every group, basically from every single people from Facebook.

Peace 🕊️

This was a miracle for me because I was consuming way too content that didn’t actually had meaning to my life and was not adding any value. I was scrolling and scrolling for no * reason for hours. This really helped me to focus on more important stuff and see the world from a different perspective.

I can finally disavow the whole social media as I don’t see anyone. I don’t have to get approval of anything to anyone. I don’t feel the courage to post a new status or photo as soon as I take it. Rather, I can enjoy the physical world. And spend more time with my friends and my family — which matter to me the most. Also, I saw my productivity getting a boost this year.

Wait, does that mean you don’t use Facebook, at all?

Well, no! I tried leaving Facebook for good, but it didn’t work out. I always ended up using it when I deactivated. So ::instead of not using at all, I have trimmed it down to a handful of use cases.

I manage a few groups like Desperately Seeking Dhaka and there are some critical information on Facebook that I often need to make my life easier (say Traffic Alert, selling something and follow some useful pages like The Verge, and some close friends).

However, I only use Facebook nowadays to post something for others to consume, not consume those content myself with endless newsfeed scrolling like before.

Also, I have a few messenger groups that I use to communicate with others. Unfortunately they are not using anything but, Messenger. So I use the platform to communicate with them from time to time.

Categories
Personal

I lost my dad this month, and it’s tough coping up without him

I want to share a story that happened to me in 2016, but I signed a legal NDA with Microsoft not to disclose it for a certain period of time.​


In 2016, I got connected with Microsoft’s Windows Vice President of that time (how I got connected with him is a whole different story). I started emailing him regularly with many of my thoughts about improving Windows 10 as it was in very early beta. ​

Just like how Bruce Wayne falls down to a pit when he lost his dad, my emotions reflect the same.


We exchanged many ideas and he often asked me to give prototypes and demonstration of the features. I sent the demo, prototypes with more enthusiasm each time the next day. ​


Many of my ideas and feature ideas later got shipped with Windows 10. (Windows Defender self-security, the new screenshot tool which is replacing Snipping Tool, many improvements in Windows 10 Mobile, Automatic Sign in with Microsoft Account are just some of the ideas that got deployed in later years). I also gave an idea of a browser that updates itself, detaching from Windows 10, which I was surprised to see because the idea was pretty similar like the new MS Edge.​
Anyways, the reason I’m sharing this is not about these features that got deployed later on. For these contributions, the Microsoft team wanted to gift me something back in the days. They sent a brand new top-tier Core i7 Surface Pro 3 with a stylus and everything to me. As I had been a tech guy since I was a teen, this was like my wildest dream come true. Freaking Microsoft’s Windows Vice President sent me a top-tier, max spec’d Surface Pro 3! I couldn’t wait to use it.​


So after getting it shipped to Bangladesh and unboxing, my father couldn’t believe it. He was so astonished and was so awe’d by the laptop. I could see he loved the computer. Since it was mine, he never could have asked it for himself because he knew I was damn excited for the Surface Pro 3. But seeing his excitement, I took a decision that day. I thought to myself – I am still pretty young, and an expensive gadget like this – doesn’t suit me. It would be best if my father uses it and I instantly gifted one of my most precious gifts to him. He was delighted, and he used it till the last week before he went into a coma and eventually passed away.​


My father would have been 62 today (it was his birthday today). I had to open the laptop today to collect some old data files. I’m proud that I gave it to him as a gift a few years back (and made him a bit proud). ​
It’s tough coping up with the situation. If you have your parents, do take care of them. If you can, please pray for my father’s departed soul in your next prayer.

Categories
Design Thinking

Why Facebook’s Desktop UI Makes No Sense from Human Computer-Interaction Perspective

Is this is beginning of the end of the new Facebook Desktop user interface?

Every once in a while, a design change comes – and people get furious. And it’s quite OK – because people hate changes. Remember, I was seven. People hated the icons of iOS 7. But eventually we made peace with it. However, in this case of Facebook’s redesign, I think the hatred is quite logical. Because when examining the designs from HCI perspective, I had found that they are repeating the same mistake which Microsoft did a few years ago.

A hallmark of a good user interface is how simple it is to find and do things on a web page.

Users shouldn’t have to read a manual in order to publish a Facebook post.

Why I think Facebook is in trouble with the new desktop design

2012, I was using Windows 7 on my laptop. A free offer prompted on my screen to upgrade from Win 7 to Win 8. The first look was really very impressive, but the problem started when I was trying to find common apps that I needed most. I tried many ways with utter frustration to get back to old desktop theme and when I finally did, the option was to move the mouse pointer to absolute lower left corner. The “tile thing” on Win8 had nothing to do with my PC activities! I desperately Googled to get back my Desktop look and feel permanently. I still wonder how many people use that tiled interface on their Win 10 PCs.

Probably not many. Because Microsoft has been phasing out the tiles and in the October 2020 update, the new start menu will finally put a nail on the coffin for tiles.

The reason why Microsoft was pushing tiled interface hard was based on the assumption that people will no longer be using the PC we know today, instead everybody will be carrying and working with mobile computing devices with no mouse and keyboard. While the later part is true, contrary to their belief, people are still using PCs with tiled interface off. They were theoretically (Fitt’s Law) correct, but not historically (Cognitive Adaptation). Moreover, it was also Microsoft’s illusion that if most users get adapted with their new interface, people will be quick to accept their mobile Operating System. Eventually they launched their Windows Mobile and when I got my hand on it, I couldn’t figure out how to make call with this pathetic device! The rest is history, a 100s of millions $ just drained into water.

Facebook’s new design turns your PC into an enormous phone

Once you switch to the new Facebook layout, the first overwhelming impression is one of supreme embiggenment.

Everything is so ******* big! From the icons to the layouts, the buttons, it’s like it has been designed for really small resolution phones.

Facebook forgets Fitt’s Law

While designing the new Facebook user interface, I guess the designers completely forgot there is a thing named Fitts Law. Here is a simplified version of the law.

You can read this really cool article on Fitts Law and it’s importance on our life in this article at interaction design foundation.

If you have time, listen to my WordCamp session on human-computer interaction where I have talked about Fitts Law from 25 minutes mark in this video.

The text sizes are larger, the elements are more widely spaced, and very little fits on the screen at Interaction Design Foundation

Fitt's Law
IDF explaining Fitt’s Law

Put simply, Fitts’ Law states: “…the time to acquire a target is a function of the distance to and size of the target”. As the distance increases, movement takes longer and as the size decreases selection again takes longer. Whilst Paul Fitts established his law of movement before the advent of graphical user interfaces, the law is no less robust when applied to navigation through the virtual world.

Interaction Design Foundation

The Stories banner is, thankfully, less obnoxiously huge than it was on the old layout. That’s a matter of sheer necessity, unfortunately; it has to be smaller in order to fit even half of a post underneath it on the new scale of things. I was unable to find a single pair of posts on my timeline that would fit on one page under the new layout—and at least half of them were at least two pages tall, all by themselves.

What’s really ugly

  • Huge text! Even normal texts are huge
  • Wasted space! The left and right portion is completely wasted.
  • Only one post on the screen at a time. (Huge waste of space!)
  • The Messenger functionality is also downgraded, with only a single chat visible at any one time. If you click another contact or group on your contacts list, your current chat disappears, to be replaced with the new one.
  • The layout itself, basically!

Doing the same mistake like Microsoft: Taking users’ for granted

As I said in the earlier part of the article, Microsoft paid a price for taking users for granted. The same could happen to Microsoft.

Don’t get me wrong. I don’t hate Facebook. I actually admired them for some design changes in mobile a few months back. But you can’t replicate the same design and push it to your desktop users.

There are more Facebook users on mobile phone (79.2%) than on PC, 19.1% users use on both. Taking the fact guaranteed, Facebook might have similar expection/hypothesis that PC users are ready or even will be happy to use its mobile interface paradigm on desktop. My instinct only can tell that this could be another Microsoft case where they failed on both end.

P.S. Thanks to Dr. Tabin Hasan, a Human Computer Interaction Scholar and my HCI mentor, for helping me to use some portions of his thoughts in this article.

Categories
Life

Why Friends Matter and Why It Mattered To Me

Friends.

A 7 character word. It sounds so simple, yet the true meaning of this word is more substantial than we realize.

Friendship is more complicated as an adult, especially in your 20′s and 30′s. You get a lot busy with your work, meet a lot of new people which you do blunder considering friends, explore new paths, make new roads, but amidst the city rush – they stand by us when we’re down, and they’re always up for a night or an afternoon.

Unlike our relationships with our partners or family members, there’s no outright expectation that we have to stay involved in our friend’s lives. Our friendships are voluntary, and it’s the ongoing choice we make to stay connected to our friends that makes the support we received from them so incredibly validating and essential for our overall well-being and self-worth.

WHAT MATTERS MORE THAN THE NUMBER OF FRIENDS WE HAVE IS THE QUALITY OF THE CONNECTIONS WE MAKE.

I made this cool little video, as a tribute to my friends and to celebrate the 15 long years.

Simply put, having friends, good friends, is essential. Our friends can help us figure out who we are and what it is we really want in life. They encourage us to reach our goals, make it easier to cope with life’s ups and downs, and shield us from mental health struggles, like anxiety and depression.

Even though we’re learning just how meaningful our friendships are for our health, well-being, and success, we just don’t talk about our friendships as much as we do with our other connections.

My friends had a significant and profound influence on me, leading a stress-free life with excellent mental health. And this helped me a lot to focus better, being more productive, be in good health, having a better concentration on learning, and more. Above all, they made me a BETTER HUMAN BEING, and I cannot be prouder for them.

We often take these for granted; however, this pandemic situation has taught us a bit more why friends are absolutely crucial.

Happy friendship day to all. Here’s a thank you note to all those crazy nights, afternoons, hangouts, fights, debates, support, criticism, and more.

Categories
Movie Reviews

Why I Absolutely Loved Sleepless in Seattle Even Watching It After 27 Years of Its Release

Today I watched Sleepless in Seattle 27 years after the film got released. And I loved it.

I don’t know why I didn’t see this movie earlier in my life. I usually avoid RomComs because I am keener in thrillers, sci-fi but missing this movie for so long was an utter stupidity.

I should have watched it right after I watched “You’ve Got Mail.” Nora Ephron was behind some of the greatest romantic comedies of all time, including When Harry Met Sally, You’ve Got Mail, and, of course, Sleepless in Seattle.

I was browsing through the Netflix catalog and somehow found it, and I instantly remembered that it was in my watch list for so long; nevertheless, I kept procrastinating because of the genre.

But after seeing this movie today, I have liked the film SO MUCH, more than I initially hoped so. Some films stick with you beyond its stories, screenplay.

There are some moments in films you keep coming back to see (Cap wielding Mjolnir, Run Forrest Run, I wanted it to be you so badly, I’ll be back, etc.) again and again. This movie is that kind of film.

It starts with a phone call to a late-night radio host, and, suddenly, we are introduced to the ever beautiful Meg Ryan and ever charming Tom Hanks. And they have electrifying chemistry that’s almost palpable.

Sleepless in Seattle tells the story of a bereaved architect (Tom Hanks) who confesses his loneliness to a radio DJ and is subsequently sought out by a woman who lives on the other side of America. A boy wants to see his dad (Hanks) happy after his mother died of cancer. Hanks and Meg Ryan comes into the play as the perfect duo with unparalleled chemistry. The story is full of innocence and a pure heart.

27 years later, the film is still as fresh as it was 2 decades ago. The story is simple, but it was done masterfully.

The movie offers a lot of hard-to-believe scenarios, like meeting on the top of Empire Street Building but still, as a 90s rom-com – you can give that a pass.

A heartwarming movie perfect for a lazy afternoon. It’s also available on Netflix.

Watch the movie on Netflix

Watch Sleepless in Seattle on Netflix

Watch on Netflix

Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks have a chemistry that’s hard to come by today. Still a classic. See it with your girl.

Bored? Frustrated? Can’t decide what to do?

Give this movie a chance, and I hope you’ll have a smile when you end the movie.

Categories
Mobile

A Journey From Android to iPhone

I have been using Android since Android Froyo. I am a great fan of Android and I still am very enthusiastic about Android. I have been tinkering with phones since the early days of Gingerbread / CM7. I wrote blog post back in the days when I first bought Motorola Atrix. I also wrote a tutorial about installing CyanogenMod7 on Atrix back in the days.

My journey with Android started with a bang. I loved every minute of the thrill. I loved modding. Flashing custom ROMs, overclocking kernels and trying out different ROMs helped me to explore the openness and possibilities of Android. I even flashed Ubuntu on a phone. It was pretty wild back in the days.

Why I have fallen in love with iPhone and iOS

If you don’t want to read the whole thing, just read the last paragraph.

I do not like Apple as a company for overpricing pretty much everything. After Atrix 4G, I bought another Android from Motorola, the infamous Moto G!

The Moto G sold like hotcakes for $199

The Moto G was one of the best phone I ever used.

Nevertheless, when my Motorola updated the Moto G from KitKat to Lollipop, I was utterly frustrated with the overall experience. Lollipop was shipped even before it was ready. It had horrible performance issues and the new material UI didn’t look or feel as good as the demos/YouTube videos.

Google released Android 6.0 Marshmallow to fix these situations. It improved the situation but I didn’t like the whole design language Google took for Androids. The Android material design seemed like a mess and the animations were not smooth back in the days. Due to the design, the system required more memory and efficient processors.

I used MM and Lollipop for like a year and at that point, I often felt frustrated because of the plastic UI and app performance. The Facebook app on Android still lagged on the most high-end phones at that time.

What’s the point of a high specs phone if your phone can’t handle apps like Facebook and Gmail together? So I decided to jump the ship. I was very hesitant since I was totally hooked up with Google ecosystem. (Google contacts, Google play music etc). I also needed some key apps like SwiftKey, Keep. They were already there so I decided to switch.

Why I switched to iOS

After using Moto G for like 2 solid years, I thought about upgrading. I never liked Lollipop and Marshmallow. I believed they were released without proper stability and testing. The software was half done. The apps lagged. The frame rates dropped across the OS. Apps crashed. It was a bad experience.

I wanted to get another stock Android but at that time – the only available options were Nexus. Nexus 6 was way too big for me. And all the other non Nexus phones had a custom skin on top of Android which I had never been a fan of. Stock Android all the way, right? 😅🙌

This video from Mrwhosetheboss sums a lot of my thoughts. You might give this video a go.

I bought an iPhone 6S sometimes back in January 2017 and started using it from around March that year. I agree that the first month in iPhone has been bad. I didn’t quite figure out how to move all my photos to my 16GB iPhone.

I moved the photos from iTunes to iPhone then I figured out, I couldn’t delete the photos I moved from PC to iPhone. I mean wtf Apple? If I copy photos from pc to iPhone, I can’t delete them? What kind of rubbish is this? And Apple still is an arrogant prick about this.

My first iPhone was the iPhone 6S

Then I figured out Google Photos and since then it has been a must-have app for me. I used Google Play Music to play all my local songs via cloud.

Since the initial hiccup, the experience has been fantastic. The apps run way better in iOS. Facebook Instagram and even some Google’s stock app run better on iOS. They released YouTube dark mode on iOS first. I always get security updates. Although iOS 11 was pretty bad, however, from 11.1, things mostly are as good as before. (Although I liked iOS 10’s design better). Who misses the dotted network bars?

There are somethings which Android does better like downloading stuff to mobile. iOS can download too but in the app’s own sandboxed space. However, with iOS13’s Files app it has been a breeze. Anyone can download anything in Files app and can import in other apps. The Files app has been a great addition to iOS.

No central storage access for user was a bummer st first for me. In iOS all data must reside inside an app. There’s no storage which all app can access. This seems like a hiccup at first, but it’s a great way to make sure other apps can not access the data of another app.

I am really loving the iOS experience and didn’t expect this type of smooth performance from a 3-year-old phone. It can easily go another year or year and a half. So no wonder why people keep buying the Apple phones. Mostly because they work so smoothly, without any hiccups (exceptions happen but let’s ignore them here) and the user remains very satisfied. On the other hand, major apps still lag in high-end Android phones (Mi5 lagged while running Facebook app).

That is very frustrating. I remember using facebook lite app because the Facebook app lagged like hell on my phone. Mostly because the app wasn’t optimized properly. Not Android’s fault at all.

At the end of the day, I am amazed and very satisfied with iOS because how reliable and efficient it is with its resources.

I recently upgraded to iPhone11

This smoothness is there because all codes run native on iOS and do not need JIT Compiler like Android (Java compilation). Android would never be as smooth because of JIT.

Why I upgraded to iPhone 8, then iPhone 11

Now when I’m thinking about moving, I’m afraid I won’t be able to be satisfied outside iOS. Well I guess that’s how Apple wraps you up in their web of ecosystem. After using 6S for a while, I only upgraded because I needed 64GB of storage.

I used an iPhone 8 for about a year. The phone was great. It served all my purposed. A fast processor, great screen and great performance. The camera quality was great too.

However, I recently upgraded to iPhone 11. Mostly because I loved the green color of the new iPhone 11. Nothing else. iPhone 8 was perfectly capable of serving me another year for sure.

The experience has only got better. I do miss iPhone 8/iPhone 6S small footprint a lot – but gosh I love that green color of iPhone11.

Why iPhone SE is a big deal for the phone industry

I love the strategy Apple has chosen for its newly released #iPhoneSE. This might be the most important phone releases in the industry for a while. It doesn’t do anything out of the ordinary. But it does everything pretty damn well for $399 as mentioned by Marques Brownlee.

We have been seeing the “Services” move by Apple for the last couple of years. Apple TV+, Apple Music, iCloud needs more customers if they want to earn big from SaaS services. Giving an iPhone to mass audience with spectacular build quality and the latest & greatest chip (A13 Bionic) only reiterates how serious Apple is with its services. This should also boost the sales of already loved Airpods. (Fun fact: Did you know if Apple separated Airpods as a different company it would still be a Fortune 500 company?)

I’m keenly waiting for 2021 when Apple should be introducing MacBooks with ARM chips. The future should be very interesting. That would be a major blow for Intel who has been in a major competition with AMD Ryzen chips.

I still don’t like Apple because of their aggressive pricing but I will think twice before buying other phone.

(I wrote the whole post from WordPress app from mobile. Pardon me if there was some grammatical errors)