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Is India ready for eGovernance?

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Since opening of Indian economy to the world, and proliferation of Internet all over, we are seeing more and more services provided by the government is becoming web centric. It means a lot, at least to the technology savvy young public, as they are able to get information literally on their finger tips by accessing very useful information on their smart phones and laptops.

But, as a old time Information Technology (IT) professional, I notice that many a times, implementation by government departments leaves much to be desired. Most of government websites are designed and maintained by National Informatics Centre (NIC).

I'll give some example to illustrate, what I mean.

1. Scant regard for IT Security

I will be able to best illustrate this point by showing screen-shots of few prominent government websites.

a. Error shown below is for a page on NSDL site that take you to a page that allows you to make TDS payments under Form 280, 281 etc. What it means that this page does not have…

Extracting E-Mail addresses from a file or a web page using Microsoft Excel

Recently I needed to extract E-mail addresses from a range of cells in an Excel file. I looked around for a solution on Internet.

After going through number of solutions, I hit upon a very elegant solution that could be used easily for extracting Email addresses not only from Excel file but from any web page or a word file or anything that can be selected and copied and pasted in to a Excel sheet. The solution is described below.

It's essentially a short VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) code (also called a program) to create a custom function in Excel named FindEmailAddresses(Cell1:Cell2). Where range Cell1:Cell2 would contain the text from where we wish to extract Email addresses.

Assuming we have already created the function (explained later below) - here is a description of how to use it.
1. Assuming cells A1 to C5 contains the text from where we want to extract email ids
2. Insert a new column at A1 - so that original content of A1 to C5 will shift to B1 to D5.
3. Now, sele…

Would you ditch a PC running Windows XP because Microsoft is stopping support from April 8, 2014?

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For last 6 months or so there is an intense debate and advisory from various sections of media, some of them acting on behalf of certain IT vendors also, that it would owe fully dangerous to continue to use Windows XP PC after the D-day.

Here is my insight in to the situation:

Windows XP has been in existence for last 12 years. This period is perhaps longer than any other Windows version so far. And also, it is one of the most admired and widely use PC operating system on earth. Even as on today, more than 30% of PCs run Windows XP.

So, should people scrap the PC or donate it to a charity or do something else?

There have been various answers from various people. Some of the most popular are listed below:

1.Upgrade it to Windows 8.1: Well, this may not be possible for most of the PCs because of old hardware or cost of upgrade. In fact, cost of upgrade is perhaps more than double of the current value of the PC.

2. Upgrade to Windows 7: If we decide to ignore the cost of Upgrade then this …