iXBRL – more XML based markup languages…

So along with the XMLisation of a ton of other things, comes the evolution of accounting formats into XBRL or iXBRL. It’s supposed to make filing and sharing  of accounts between systems easier for everyone… Of course, there will be the initial hiccups in the implementation, and where there is a problem, there will be someone with a solution. Some companies provide managed tagging of Financial documents, converting them into iXBRL format that is compliant with the filing authority’s needs… A great help if you feel that you need a bit more time to come to terms with the new regulations.

Drupal: Installing multiple contrib modules – the easiest way

Here’s how to quickly extract multiple tar.gz files in a folder using “find” or a loop. It’s easy, it’s simple, and it gets your drupal install up and running in less time than it takes to say “Upload via FTP”. If you want the solution right away, scroll down to the bottom if this post.

I’ve recently had to install drupal a number of times in a span of a few days. The way I usually do it – download tarballs, extract, create file structure, upload via ftp – was just too slow. Fortunately I have shell access to my shared hosting account on DreamHost, so here’s what I’ve been doing recently.

  1. Fire up a terminal window in Mac OS and SSH to my wonderful DreamHost linux webserver (you can do the same in Linux, but you need some software SSH in windows) – Here’s the command I use:
    ssh username@servername.com
    and enter the password when the server asks you for it. Do note that the characters that you type in for your password may not appear on the screen, but they’re still being entered.
  2. Change to the directory that you’re going to install drupal into. Alongside this, navigate over to drupal.org, and to their download page. At the time of writing this, Drupal 6.20 is the latest version, so the path to the .tar.gz file looks like this: http://ftp.drupal.org/files/projects/drupal-6.20.tar.gz I just right click in Firefox and select “Copy Link Location”.
  3. Now, skip back over to the terminal window. Remember, I’ve navigated to the folder I want to install drupal to. Then type in wget http://ftp.drupal.org/files/projects/drupal-6.20.tar.gz. This downloads the drupal core tarball to the server directly.
  4. Extract it using tar -xzvf drupal-6.20.tar.gz. You’ll see a screen ful of paths as the files are extracted to a folder called drupal-6.20.
  5. I go ahead and start off the install in a browser, and get the settings file renamed and database hooked up, and everything else until it becomes time to get the contrib modules installed.
  6. On any given install of drupal, I usually have atleast 10 or so contrib modules installed, and very often it goes up quite a bit. Like I said before, FTP just does not cut it for this, so, like our drupal core tar.gz file, I find the paths to every single contrib module that I want installed. And here’s a little secret – They’re all at the Modules page of Drupal.org!!! and happily listed in descending order of the modules most used. This is a quick process. I wget them to the sites/all/modules/ folder, so that I have about 20 GZipped Tar files; and that’s where I hit a snag.
  7. You see, the tar command does not use wildcards happily. In fact it does not use wildcards. – (period) So I had to find an alternative, to get all these .tar.gz files extracted without having to repeat the same command again and again manually. I found a solution. In fact, I found two solutions
  8. find -name '*.tar.gz' -exec tar -xzvf '{}' ';' – This piece of code extracts all .tar.gz files in the current folder, and all subfolders, making it ideal if you have all the tar files ready and waiting extraction in the sites/all/modules/ sites/all/themes/ and sites/all/libraries/ folders. Just run it in the sites/all/ folder, and then run back and rm -R *.tar.gz each folder to remove the tar files.
  9. for i in *.tar.gz; do tar -xzvf $i; done – This piece of code extracts all .tar.gz files in the current folder. Leaving you to cleanup all the tar.gz files in the directory with a simple rm -R *.tar.gz
  10. That’s it, done! Head over to http://yoursite.com/admin/build/modules and tick the check box next to the names of all the contrib modules you want to activate, save, and they’re ready to do your bidding!

I hope you find this time saving shortcut useful. The code is not mine. I found it on WebHostingTalk.com in a thread titled How do you untar multiple .tar.gz files? I was also helped along by a good friend who does not want to be named. Experiment and see what works best for you.

What’s your Talisman?

Talisman Tattoos LogoTalisman Tattoos is a cool place to hang out at… New Shop, but with Chennai’s first professional tattoo artists. Amar and Nisha have been around for ages, first tattooing at Irezumi and now in their very own all-new-boutique, Talisman. Both Amar and Nisha are respected for their talent and have tattooed a number of celebrities (though they’re not at liberty to say who), and have clients who regularly visit them from far of parts of the country: even from Mumbai and Delhi.

Talisman has a promo offer happening till the 8th of October. If you book an appointment before then, you can get a sweet 20% off on your tattoo!

Talisman Tattoos Gallery
Talisman on Facebook
Talisman on Twitter
Talisman on FourSquare

Apple OS X (10.6.4) Graphics Update 1.0

Snow Leopard Graphics Update 1.0Apple has long been criticized for their apparent neglect of the gaming industry. Today, it seems that they’re taking note. A software update released on 17th August says that it fixes problems that affect Portal, Team Fortress 2 and StarCraft 2 among others. Enough to level the playing field? Maybe not. A step in the right direction? Possible. Only time will tell.


The Snow Leopard Graphics Update contains stability and performance fixes for graphics applications and games in Mac OS X v10.6.4.

Products Affected

MacBook (13-inch, Early 2009), MacBook Pro (17-inch, Mid 2010), MacBook Pro (13-inch, Mid 2010), MacBook Pro (15-inch, Mid 2010), iMac (21.5-inch, Late 2009), Mac Pro (Early 2009), Mac mini (Early 2009), Mac OS X 10.6.4, Mac mini (Mid 2010), iMac (21.5-inch, Mid 2010), iMac (27-inch, Mid 2010), MacBook (13-inch, Mid 2010), Portal, StarCraft II, Team Fortress 2

What’s included?

The Snow Leopard Graphics Update contains stability and performance fixes for graphics applications and games:

  • Addresses frame rate issues occurring in Portal and Team Fortress 2 by Valve, on iMac (Late 2009 and Mid 2010), Mac mini (Early 2009 and Mid 2010), Mac Pro (Early 2009), MacBook (Early 2009 and Mid 2010) and MacBook Pro (15-inch, Mid 2010) or MacBook Pro (17-inch, Mid 2010) models.
  • Resolves an issue that could cause Aperture 3, or StarCraft II by Blizzard, to unexpectedly quit or become unresponsive.
  • Resolves an image corruption issue that may occur when disconnecting and reconnecting external displays while the system is running.

I’ms in your skynets, lollings aways ats yours futiles attempts ats contrllings ours internets






Two New Websites from the ColoursAlive.com workshop

Heya Everyone!

ColoursAlive is proud to announce that we’ve got two more websites out of our design workshop and into the wild for your viewing pleasure.

JeevaRaghunath.com is the website of acclaimed storyteller and childrens’ book writer, Jeeva Raghunath. She’s a bundle of energy when telling stories to kids. They just can’t get enough of her stories!

TalismanTattoos.in is the website of Chennai’s first Tattoo Artists, Amar and Nisha. They’ve recently started off their own tattoo boutique called Talisman, and are to teach interested students who are really interested, how to Tattoo.

Check out the websites and let us know what you think. Cheers!

Reliance Netconnect Broadband Billing issues. An open letter.

The following is a letter that I am sending to Reliance Communication’s Service Assurance Cell, Chennai Nodal Officer, and Chennai Appellate Authority. The email IDs for which are: serviceassurancecell@relianceada.com, Rcomnodalofficer.Chennai@relianceada.com, Rcomappellateauthority.Chennai@relianceada.com. You can read about how I’ve been paying for services without receiving a bill for the last 4 months, and how they have taken no action at all to resolve the issue, yet have closed the case on their side, indicating that the problem has been resolved.

Dear Sir / Madam,

So far I have had a very bad experience with your company’s billing department. I sincerly hope you are able to rectify this in the near future.

I have not received a single bill for my Reliance Netconnect Broadband connection right from the day that I first subscribed to your service (over four months). This has resulted in sudden deactivation of internet service to my datacard on two occasions, putting me through great inconvenience.

Though I first complained some time in early January about non receipt of a bill, the situation has not yet been rectified. Each month, the first indication that my bill’s due date has passed is a phone call from one of your collection agents stating that my bill date has not been paid.

Each time a complaint is taken, I am informed that I will receive a copy of my bill within 3-5 working days, but the bill does not come. On what basis then, am I to pay the amount you quote on the telephone? How am I to know the details of what I am paying for? I have, till date paid up the amount quoted to me just because I needed the internet re-connected. This time I assure you that I shall not make a payment till I receive a bill.

The operator on the phone tells me that your billing department states that the bill has been sent. They also say that  they called and spoke to me regarding this issue, but I have not received any phone call from any representative of your company. I urge you to look into the occurance of this mis-reporting that is happening as it is quite serious.

The latest of my complaints bears the number 121940180 which is a request for a bill to be sent to my postal address. I have also requested that you reverse ALL late payment fees that have been charged till date, and inform me of the amount; complaint number 121940279.

My next step, should I not receive an immediate response, will be to contact the Public Greviance Cell of the TRAI to inform them that your company has been negligent of standard billing and complaint-followup procedures.

My MDN Number is 0938xxxxxx0.
My Name is Susheel Samuel Chandradhas
My Address is

1xx, xxxxxxx Nagar,
Chennai – 600 xxx

My Phone Number is 9962028747.

I look forward to a speedy and permanent resolution to this problem.


Susheel Chandradhas.

PS: This letter is also being posted on my blog. You can find it at http://www.coloursalive.net/2010/03/18/reliance-netconnect-broadband-billing-issues-an-open-letter/

ColoursAlive.com, now alive and kicking

We finally got around to doing it… We’ve got the http://www.coloursalive.com/ website up and running. It is still a work in progress, but the good news is that it is up, and we’ll be modifying it often. Please keep coming back, you’re sure to see something new each time.

Feel free to write in to us, and let us know whether you like our simple approach, or whether you totally hate it. We’d love to hear from you.

Google set to kill-off IE6. Long overdue.

This is a day that should go down in history.

The long overdue demise of IE6 has begun in earnest… Google today mailed Google Apps admins stating that they would be phasing out support for legacy browsers, including Internet Explorer 6 in order to provide quicker and more sophisticated services to their users.

Dear Google Apps admin,

In order to continue to improve our products and deliver more sophisticated features and performance, we are harnessing some of the latest improvements in web browser technology.  This includes faster JavaScript processing and new standards like HTML5.  As a result, over the course of 2010, we will be phasing out support for Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 ​as well as other older browsers that are not supported by their own manufacturers.

We plan to begin phasing out support of these older browsers on the Google Docs suite and the Google Sites editor on March 1, 2010.  After that point, certain functionality within these applications may have higher latency and may not work correctly in these older browsers. Later in 2010, we will start to phase out support for these browsers for Google Mail and Google Calendar.

Google Apps will continue to support Internet Explorer 7.0 and above, Firefox 3.0 and above, Google Chrome 4.0 and above, and Safari 3.0 and above.

Starting this week, users on these older browsers will see a message in Google Docs and the Google Sites editor explaining this change and asking them to upgrade their browser.  We will also alert you again closer to March 1 to remind you of this change.

In 2009, the Google Apps team delivered more than 100 improvements to enhance your product experience.  We are aiming to beat that in 2010 and continue to deliver the best and most innovative collaboration products for businesses.

Thank you for your continued support!

I believe that this is a long-overdue step, and would be thrilled to see other service providers such as hotmail, yahoo and (in India) rediff begin phasing out support for legacy browsers, giving the internet a shove in the right direction.

This would mean that web developers can look forward to implementing more advanced features and styling of their websites without going through all the trouble of creating a scaled down, and bug fixed version for older, more buggy browsers.

If you’re wondering what browser to use instead of IE6, you could try Firefox, Chrome, Opera, Safari or even Internet Explorer 8.

Go ahead and exercise your right to choose.