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Hello all, I apologise for my long absence. I have been quite occupied in the last 4 years. I've completed a masters degree, climbed Kilimanjaro and joined a not for profit. I still search the DC forum for software ideas. I've stopped using many of the admittedly excellent DC programs, mostly because Microsoft seems to have come to their senses and included these features by default in Windows.

The most common one was a keyboard launch program like FARR. Those on Windows 7 and 8 will notice that the windows key mostly does the same thing now, although FARR is admittedly way more feature rich. I can't thank mouser and the other developers enough for making Windows a more usable and productive OS while Microsoft were busy pulling their thumbs out.

On the online front, I've mostly become a lurker, but I do post on Quora. Mouser, congrats on the 10th anniversary of DC!

sri, glad to see another DC member in Australia. I'm in Melbourne and I wonder if we could do a DC meetup down here?

Living Room / Re: Steve Jobs is dead.
« on: October 07, 2011, 06:33 AM »
I have only ever used 3 apple products:

1. iTunes - to access iTunes U
2. Safari - to make sure the sites I build work
3. Quicktime Player - to play those .mp4 or .mov files in the browser

And all the 3 products sucked. I even used iTunes and Safari on a native Mac, not a Windows machine. Even now, when I have to use someone's Mac, I go nuts with that one button trackpad and the whole emphasis around drag and drop rather than use the keyboard.

But I have friends and family that are unlike me. I am surrounded by PC illiterate folks who don't understand the ABCs of computer security and keeping their anti virus up to date. And their lack of tech knowledge doesn't mean that I should stop associating with them, because they are great people otherwise. For them (and indirectly for me), Apple was a solution. Thanks to an iPad, my very old grandfather was able to talk to me from his couch thousands of miles away without having to learn to boot up a laptop. Earlier this year, he passed away. I agree that this could have been done on an Android tablet or a netbook too. But you can't deny that there are certain markets and needs that Apple addresses quite well.

While I may never buy an Apple product, I must thank Apple Inc. (not just Steve) for making a product that allowed me to keep in touch with my family. While Apple may not be the technology pioneers that their fans think they are, they are certainly another producer of quality, usable tech hardware (albeit with a steep price tag). And as a company, they have every reason to be proud of that.

General Software Discussion / Re: Google Docs Sync
« on: May 06, 2011, 02:16 PM »
Google Cloud Connect for Microsoft Office:

Automatically syncs documents on your computer that are opened with office onto Google Docs. Not sure if this is what you want.

Thank you all for contributing to the discussion so far. I suppose I should explain a bit more about the reason for my question. In developing countries, I see several social ventures that aim to bring education and clean drinking water to millions who can't get access to either. On the other hand, citizens of most developed countries would take things like basic education, clean water and reliable power for granted. It makes me somewhat sad to see non-profits do what governments should be doing for their citizens in the first place. Of course, defining where the role of government starts and ends is a difficult question in itself. The answer would vary depending on the individual. But I would be interested to know what others think on that.

As app mentioned above, I know that even in a perfect government, you would always need some non-profits to take care of local issues that are only relevant to a small number of people. I also know that governments don't fund all non-profits. But a few things still puzzle me:

I have sometimes seen 2 non-profits or social ventures that are started, sometimes in the same geographic region to essentially achieve the same end goal. Both these organizations compete for government funding and sponsorship from corporates as well as the public through advertising. To make it more confusing, both have the Tax exempt status. The best example I can think of is Peta and the RSPCA.

Why does such fragmentation occur in the non-profit sector? Is it due to different ideologies and leadership? And should there be more regulation in getting a tax exempt status to prevent unnecessary fragmentation in the non-profit sector?

I recently came across a statistic that stated that there are far more social startup ventures in developing countries than developed ones. It got me thinking if governments were perfect and did everything they were supposed to, would there still be a role for non-profits? I also know that several non-profits are government funded. Why does it make more sense for governments to allocate funds this way versus starting a government department to take care of the social issue themselves? Is it so that they can avoid the blame on themselves should something go wrong?

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