Telenor 3G USB Device

Telenor 3G Connect USB Device Review

Yesterday I purchased Telenor’s 3G Connect USB device. I was excited to buy it because they were offering 30GB per month free data for two months. This offer made the device virtually free. The sales staff at the franchise was very helpful, he activated the device and showed me how to recharge packages and stuff. He also showed me that he is activating my free 30 GB package.

I came home and plugged in the USB device. I was checking the modem’s settings when I discovered that the available data on my plan was 998 MB. I panicked because my daily usage far exceeds 1 GB data. I called the customer support center and was informed that the 30GB volume is segregated to cover the whole month. In simple words, I can only use 998MB per day.

So basically you have the volume but Telenor will decide how you will spend it. It is basically a cap on a capped data plan. A very dishonest thing to do. If they had this cap on the capped volume they should have advertised it so that customers can make informed choice when buying the product. This restriction made it Telenor 3G USB dongle quite useless to me. My job requires posting high quality screenshots, making gifs, and browsing lots of websites every day.

Telenor 3G Connect USB dongle

I continued using the device for the day and I crossed the data limit in 5 hours. After which the device remained connected but I didn’t get any data.

The next day I reconnected the Telenor 3G USB device and got the error “Can’t connect device. Please retry later. If the problem persists contact your service provider”.

I called the Telenor customer service center again, the untrained Telenor staff thought that since I am calling from a Telenor phone number I am complaining about 3G on my phone. They kept wasting time unless I interjected and reminded them that how they can lookup my information without asking the SIM number of my Telenor 3G USB device? The staff then asked my sim number and put me on hold. After 5 minutes she came up with the brilliant response.

“Sir, I have forwarded your complaint. It will be resolved in 72 hours.”

I protested that are you out of your mind, I will have to wait another 3 days just to hear back from you? She replied:

“No sir, I didn’t say that you will hear back from us. I said your complain will be resolved.”

At this point, I have had enough and asked her if I can return my Telenor 3G USB device for a refund. She replied

“Sir please visit our customer care office for this.”

My Review of Telenor 3G Connect Device

I used it for 1 GB data. The speeds were nothing impressive I got 1.5 MBPs to 3.1 MBPs through out my usage. The cap on the already capped plans is ridiculous and it will make your daily usage very minimum.

If you are a professional and thinking of using it for some reliable work sessions, then Telenor 3G Connect Device is absolutely useless.

On the other hand if you just want to occasionally check emails and have other backup internet solutions, then you can try it out.

Conclusion

I will visit Telenor customer care office on monday and will try to return the device. I will update the post with my experience there. I am expecting that the staff there will also be just as poorly trained as phone support. I am expecting that they will try to ask me to call phone support or do this and that. I am also certain that they will not give me a refund. So lets see…

Best Social Media Plugin for WordPress: Floating Social Bar

I have tried many social media plugins on different WordPress sites. During my previous jobs, freelance work, and on my personal blogs. The problem with most WordPress social media plugins is that they are usually full of features that I don’t need. Just like most other bloggers, I also want simple buttons that make it easier for users to share content. I don’t want to copy Mashable, or TechCrunch, I just want something that is not too obstrusive and just works. In my quest for best social media plugin I often ended up with something slow and bloated. Recently, my boss Syed Balkhi released Floating Social Bar plugin which solved the problem for me.

Best Social Media Plugin

Like I said earlier that most bloggers just want a simple and elegant solution to add social media buttons with their articles and posts. I think Floating Social Bar solves this problem.

Floating social bar in action

Speed: Floating social bar loads faster than other social media plugins for WordPress. Most other plugins just slow down your site too much and ruin the page speed and user experience.

Compact: There are just a few social media websites included in the plugin. These are the websites that most people actually use and are more likely to share your content on these websites.

Non-Obstrusive: Unlike other social media plugins which scroll down and follow your eye balls, Floating social bar sticks to its position at the top and gets out of the way. It is really annoying when I am reading an article and a huge ugly social media widget is right next to the text. Floating social bar sticks at the top and if you want you can disable that feature too.

Who should use Floating Social Bar?

If you care about user-experience on your website and find other plugins bloated and difficult to use and configure then you will like Floating Social Bar. It is very easy to install and set up. Simple install and activate Floating Social Bar plugin and go to Settings » Floating Social Bar to configure the plugins. Drag and drop social media websites you want to include and add your twitter username. Save your changes and preview your website.

Floating social bar plugins

Previously when I was using Digg Digg I had to add custom CSS to draw borders that separated post title and content from the social sharing button. Floating Social Bar works out of the box and the base CSS should look good with most WordPress themes.

Conclusion: Floating social bar is a simple and easy way to add social media buttons to your posts. It is elegant, usable and does not slow down a site. Give it a try on your website.

Help Save Radio Pakistan Karachi

Radio Pakistan

Radio Pakistan Karachi’s historical building is crying for attention. This building is significant in many ways. It is not just another old building in the old town district of Karachi. It is a valuable library containing important historical speeches, performances by the maestros and audio archives covering the history of Pakistan. Concerned citizens are requested to take action, write to the Chairman of Pakistan broadcasting corporation and ask him to take proper measures to preserve this important cultural heritage.

Totem Youtube Search and Play Plugin

I recently started using Totem movie player. Before that, VLC was my prefered media player on Ubuntu and Debian. It is still default media player on my Windows partition. But on Linux I think Totem is wonderful. I love the simplicity of Totem’s interface. Which is weird because in past I disliked Totem for the same interface but after using it a while I have become a fan. The interface is not only simple, it is also very intuitive. Totem is also feature rich in its own Gnomish way.

I specially liked Totem’s Youtube video search and play plugin. It looks fantastic, you can search and play youtube videos right inside Totem and it works great with Ubuntu 8.10. I loved it but I don’t think I will be using it that much. Totem also has BBC video plugin but unfortunately I failed to connect to the BBC servers.

Screenshot Totem's YouTube plugin - Click to enlarge

Screenshot Totem's YouTube plugin - Click to enlarge


While watching videos on YouTube you can read description provided by the uploader, you can read comments, add yours, add the video to favorites and do lots of other cool things. It is currently not possible to do all these things in Totem. You can add a video to a playlist in Totem and save that playlist on your computer, but what about the playlists I have on my youtube account?

I think some added features will make this plugin more interesting for users. Like for example the description and comments could be displayed just like it displays related videos in an extra tab on the sidebar when a video is played.

I am also thinking how one can add other video sites to totem?

Debian Ubuntu – Webcam in Yahoo! Chatrooms

Recently my internet service provider gifted me a webcam. It is a Creative Vista Webcam and came with an installation disk for Windows. I wanted to see how it works on my Ubuntu Linux. When I plugged it in Ubuntu didn’t recognize it. I had to download drivers for it. Ubuntu’s community documentation’s Webcam page helped a lot. The EasyCam utility recognized my webcam but didn’t offer a driver for it. So I tried manual driver installation.

Rastageeks provides a hacked driver for webcams. My webcam was listed on the Working Webcams webpage. The installation instructions were simple, and since I was familiar with adding third party repositories I had no trouble installing the debian packages. Running the module assistant installed the driver on my computer and now I was able to see it working in Ekiga.

But I don’t use Ekiga, I use Yahoo! Messenger, so it has to work with Yahoo. We have Pidgin (Gaim) installed by default in Ubuntu. But it does not support Yahoo webcams. I have seen webcams working on Gyachi but I didn’t like its cluttered interface. So I decided to try Kopete. KDE Wiki has a very helpful Kopete Webcam Support page. From there I found out that I need to download libjasper-runtime package to see my webcam working. Jasper Runtime package is called libjasper-runtime and is available from Ubuntu Archives so it was much easier to download and install it. After that I ran Kopete and by clicking on Settings > Configure > Devices I was able to see my webcam working. Fantastic!

screenshot-kopete-webcam.png

I was pleased with the picture quality. It was much better than Windows, and what I saw on Yahoo! messenger installed on my Windows PC. But unfortunately Kopete does not support Yahoo Public Chatrooms. So I had to try Gyachi again. While trying to Install Gyachi, I came across more dependency issues. But these were no big issues, I simply had to install two packages libgpgme11 and libmcrypt4. Finally getting Gyachi installed, this is what I got:

screenshot gyachi yahoo chatrooms webcam

I browsed the forums to find out a solution, I read about adjusting brightness, contrast and colors. I did that too, but nothing worked. I am still unable to use the web cam in Yahoo chat rooms.

Cultural Contrasts

When Lahore is celebrating Basant, there is a man, Shaukat who entered the city with the dead bodies of his five children, injured and exhausted wife, and his now only child a baby girl.

The Supereme Court of Pakistan ordered a ban over kite flying in Punjab to combat the side effects of Basant. Government of Punjab, removed the ban for two days to celebrate Basant in Lahore. Strict measures are taken to protect innocent lives and infrastructure, and to maintain law and order during Basant. But how could you expect the wild masses to abide the law when the wild government itself has teared it up into pieces.

This, the country of contrasts is full of conflicting stories. In another city, Peshawar, schools were threatened to be attacked by suicide bombers if they do not end up their co eduction school system.

A provincial minister gets killed by a lunatic, who is crazy about saving the Islamic identity of Pakistani women. This is the country where one province is moving fast towards Talebanization and another province trying hard to depict liberalization and freedom by breaking the law.

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