Sad demise of Narendra Dabholkar

It was saddening to know that anti-superstition crusader Narendra Dabholkar was shot dead in Pune yesterday. Dr. Dabholkar had worked tirelessly in fighting against superstition. He founded the Maharashtra Andhashraddha Nirmoolan Samiti, wrote several books, had given countless talks against these practices and worked really hard in tabling anti-superstition and black magic bill in Maharashtra Assembly.

Here are some videos of Dr. Dabholkar to give a glimpse into his personality and work:

Quora answers “Brilliant” problem

Came across this question on Quora (Quora is an infinite time sink BTW!) The original question is at

Wonder why people post puzzle-type questions on Quora!

Anyway, the highest ranked answer gives a nice way to approach the problem. I would not be able to think that way and just used the brute-force:
Here is the ruby code to solve it:

def testit(a)
  (x,y,z)= a/100%10,a/10%10,a%10
  return a == x*x+y*y+z*z + 543

q=(111..999).select{|q| testit(q)}

The answer is 2626, the last 3 digits being 626.

HTML5 Up and Running

HTML5 Up and RunningHTML5 Up and Running is Mark Pilgrim’s book on HTML5. The entire text of the book is also available at Just like the other books written by Mark (Dive into Python, Greasemonkey Hacks), this book will serve as a very comprehensive introduction to the topic.

The book begins with history of HTML specification starting from conversations on www-talk mailing lists to formation of W3C and to WHAT Working Group. Then it moves on to Feature Detection, high level view of new features – canvas, video, Storage, Web Workers, Geolocation. The next chapter is a dive into details of the Document elements, new semantic elements. The next few chapters cover in detail each of the new features – Canvas, Video & Audio, Geolocation, Local Storage, Offline applications, Form semantics, Microdata. Each of these later chapters can be read stand-alone without depending on others.

There are some open source projects mentioned in the book – Modernizr for HTML5 feature detection, geo.js for smoothing out differences over gelolocation APIs. These pointers should be of great value to developers.

The book website is itself a great study in HTML5 with its very detailed attention to live examples, typography. Great work by Mark once again and kudos to O’Reilly for allowing full version (which is in fact more up-to-date than the printed book) online and also for selling the ebook in DRM free formats!

Disclaimer: I am writing this post as a part of Blogger Review program. I am not being paid to write this review. But I received the ebook free for doing this.