Hari Gangadharan’s Blog

From the desk of a gadget lover
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  • Spring (Acegi) Security Account Lockout

    Posted on February 28th, 2010 Hari Gangadharan 15 comments

    Due to my previous articles in Spring Security, some has asked me how to implement the Account Lockout on too many failed login attempts. The best way to do this is to listen for Spring events and update your User object on a failed login.  Let us start with your User object. It must be implementing the UserDetails interface and you might have already noticed that it has a method isAccountNonLocked(). You might be currently returning true in the implementation. Now we have to change the logic here to implement locked status.
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  • Six Softwares I cannot live without!

    Posted on July 17th, 2009 Hari Gangadharan No comments

    I thought this time I will write about some not so popular but very useful software. This list is in no particular order but I use all of these everyday!

    1. XMind http://www.xmind.net
    XMind is a mind-mapping and brainstorming software. It was a big help to chart our thoughts, during the time we were running the startup.
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  • Back in US!

    Posted on July 9th, 2009 Hari Gangadharan No comments

    After a month long journey and two kids with dysentery, I am happy to be back home in California. I am still recovering from my jet-lag. These days I am sleeping very early, probably by 8:30 PM because of the jet-lag. Hopefully I will over with that by the end of this week.

    On my way back from India we stayed 4 days in Dubai, UAE. It is amazing how they have constructed that huge city in the middle of a desert. The Burj Dubai, Burj Al Arab and the Palm Jumeriah are impressive. Dubai seemed to be an extension of Kerala since we could go into any store and start talking in Malayalam. Probably half of Dubai residents are people from Kerala, India. The food there is cheap and good. The third day, we went on a desert safari which we all enjoyed. My kids had a blast riding ATV on desert.

    However I am amazed by the lack of the concept of a family (at least in the public), especially among local population. It is hard to find a family go together to a mall or a restaurant. You can see groups of men and groups of ladies roaming separately which is hard to see in US or any other western country.

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  • My Visakhapatnam visit

    Posted on June 20th, 2009 Hari Gangadharan 1 comment

    Last week I visited Visakhapatnam, the place where I started my career. That was so long back. I went there after 15 years to visit my old friends, my colleagues and above all to show my kids what I did in those days. I worked in the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant. I was so proud to show my kids the basics of Steel Making… the Blast Furnace, the Linz-Donawitz Converter, the Continuous Cast Machines and the Rolling Mills. I am pretty sure my wife and kids never thought that the Steel Plant was that huge.
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  • Look what I was working on!

    Posted on May 5th, 2009 Hari Gangadharan No comments

    We recently created a SPOT Live Widget that can be embedded in your blog or your web page. Here is my SPOT Live widget and it tells me where I am:



    If you are a SPOT User, you can easily get the SPOT Widget running on your site.

    1. First create a share page by logging into your SPOT Account and then clicking the “Share” tab.
    2. Now note the glId of the share link created (share links are of the format http://share.findmespot.com/shared/faces/gogl.jsp?glId=xxxxx – here xxxxx is your glId or guest link Id).
    3. Sign up for a Google Maps API key. You need to provide the URL of your site.
    4. Return to this page and click on the “Share this” button on the bottom of this widget and copy the code from that and paste it to your blog or webpage. Make sure you are pasting the code in HTML mode (not visual mode).
    5. Replace the feeds: [ "0o0VYWuQkoUvs9dj04qhOxFOgavQXdAEP" ] in the copied code with feeds: [ "xxxxx" ] where xxxx is the glId obtained from step 2.
    6. Replace your-gmap-key in the copied code with the key obtained in Step 3.

    Sure, it sounds complicated since I explained it too much :) . For people with some knowlege of HTML it is quick and easy.

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  • My Kindle 2 Finally Arrived!

    Posted on March 3rd, 2009 Hari Gangadharan 5 comments

    From late December, I was planning to order Kindle but I put it off just because of the rumors of Kindle 2 being out. I also noticed the huge waiting period for Kindle last month (almost 13 weeks). From that I was pretty sure Kindle 2 is on the way. Finally the day they announced, I ordered my Kindle 2. I have seen Kindle 1 and I liked it too but I heard that the major flaws with Kindle 1 is resolved in this version.

    Kindle - in the packageKindle 2 came in a very nice packing. After opening, I was surprised by the iPhone like thin look and its tiny bright keys. The keys actually fits nicely compared to the Kindle 1.It came powered on and the screen had instruction on how to start using Kindle! I initially thought that it was plastic paper stuck on the screen of Kindle!

    The shorter paging button is much better and it does not accidentally turn a page. The kindle 2 feels like it is marginally faster… the page rendering seems to be faster and the accidental page flip is not as annoying since we can flip back fairly quickly.

    I understand that with today’s thin devices the possibility of replacing batteries is even more difficult. However I am not happy that the Kindle 2 does not have a replaceable battery. The other biggest drawback and is a downgrade from the version 1 is the missing expansion slots. The Kindle 1 had a SD slot. I hoped that Kindle 2 had at least the micro-SD slot. But without the expansion slot your Kindle is stuck with 1.5 GB capacity. Right now with around 30 books and manuals stored in Kindle, I have not even used 20 MB. But someday you have to swap some stuff out to make room for other books. I am also unhappy that I cannot organize books in folders – I am too used to folders. Even if I create folders in the Kindle internal disk everything shows up flat in the Home screen.

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  • Unusual Oscar and a big day for India

    Posted on February 23rd, 2009 Hari Gangadharan No comments

    This time the Oscar was entertaining… not because my favorite, Slumdog has won 8 out of the 8 categories it was nominated in. Hugh Jackman’s vision of a “more show less biz” Oscar turned this year’s Oscar as one of the best. Especially I liked it better than the normal version where comics try their old beaten comedy lines that are sometimes more disgusting than entertaining. Hugh’s theatrical talents were seen in couple of acts. Yes – As a host, Hugh Jackman is a big winner in this Oscar. I hope Academy will call him again the next year.

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  • Garmin nuvi 760 GPS

    Posted on February 16th, 2009 Hari Gangadharan No comments

    Recently purchased a Garmin nuvi 760 from Costco – cost $249 + tax. I could have got it a little more cheaper than that from online stores but being a staunch Costco supporter in the recent days, I do not buy from Costco only if they don’t carry the product with features I look for or I don’t like the brand they carry. This time, lucky for me I was looking for a reasonably good GPS with following features

    1. Must be able to carry it in my pocket
    2. Get the real time traffic
    3. Have a FM transmitter
    4. MP3 player
    5. SD Card slot
    6. Optional Bluetooth connectivity

    Lucky for me,  Garmin nuvi 760 had all the features I wanted. After unpacking, figuring out how it works was pretty easy. I loved the compact size its black sleek look and its nice UI. However I was not very happy that it did not have a good user manual. Probably gadget challenged users may find it difficult.

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  • Slumdog Millionaire

    Posted on February 14th, 2009 Hari Gangadharan No comments

    Few days back I saw the movie “Slumdog Millionaire”. Today I came across Priyadarshan’s statement ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ is mediocre, trashy.. That made me write this blog. I respect Priyadarshan and loved some of the movies he made. With no disrespect I would say that Priyadarshan’s movies are entertainers not Academy Award material.

    A artwork becomes great when the artist puts in a lot detail in the background. Artwork with plain canvas is not amazing. The same way a movie becomes great when there is a lot of vibrant background. A story without a colorful background is not Oscar material. That is the same reason the ‘Gone with the Wind’ is a great book. It takes us through the civil war era with a simple love story. Similarly with a simple story, Slumdog shows the environment an orphan kid has to go through in India. It made me remember another great movie “Life is Beautiful” by Roberto Benigni.

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  • Welcome to my new blog

    Posted on February 13th, 2009 Hari Gangadharan 1 comment

    I used to have a blog running in jroller.com and today I decided that it is time to upgrade. Hence after some deliberations, I started my *new* blog in my domain harinair.com.

    I am sure you will ask what is harinair? My original name is supposed to be Hari G. Nair; the middle initial G for Gangadharan (my dad’s first name). Nair is our family’s last name but my parents decided to drop it since it identifies the caste. In late 60s and early 70s there was a sentiment against using caste in the names, at least in the state of India I was born in. In that state, the last name was not important. Hence my name became Hari G.

    When I moved out and started working in other countries, I found that the last name is important and I finally expanded my middle initial to make my full name Hari Gangadharan. Later when I got married, fortunately or unfortunately, my wife’s last name was already Nair and we decided not to change her last name to Gangadharan.  When our kids were born, to reduce confusion and to keep the naming a standard (yeah – I like that!) both of my kid’s last name became Nair. Now I am the odd person out! Meanwhile since harigangadharan is too long (I too misspell it) and hari is always taken, I always use harinair for all my online identities. That way I feel I still belong in the family. Few years back, I registered this domain but I am putting this to work only now.

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