Monday, July 25, 2011

How to use CSS to display rating stars in Blogger, Blogspot

Rating stars are widely used in Blogger blog posts. Everyone will be Reviewing some or the other things using Blogger. But I have never come across any of the posts which will describe how to use CSS to display rating stars in Blogger. Hence, I am writing this post to describe how to display rating stars in Blogger.

Rating stars are star like images that indicates the rating of an item. The more stars, the better is the product. Usually we find a scale of 0 to 5 stars, and most often these are in increments of half-stars of even full-stars only.

In this tutorial we’ll discuss how we can "use CSS to display the stars" in a very elegant manner. It even allows to show any rating very clearly, so you’d be able to distinguish a rating of 3.8 from a rating of 4.2!

5 star rating system in action:

Before starting, lets have a look here at this system in action. Look at the reviews posted for Bollywood Movies on this posts. We have inserted Star rating after describing each reviews.

How to use it in Blogger Template:

The stars are constructed out of only two images. A bright , and a faint star: .

The html for these stars is very simple – one DIV inside another:
<div class="rating_bar">
<div style="width:51%"></div>

The style attribute for the inner DIV is what determines how many stars are displayed. A rating of 100% corresponds to 5 full stars. A rating of 40% corresponds to 2 stars, a rating of 42% corresponds to a little more than 2 stars, and so on.

So, you have to use above code in your blog posts as it is. But remember you should not write this on different lines, else Blogger blog post will show Bright and fainted images on different lines.

The class on the outer DIV allows us to apply CSS. The CSS used is as follows:

.rating_bar {
width: 55px;
background: url(/img/star_x_grey.gif) 0 0 repeat-x;

.rating_bar div {
height: 12px;
background: url(/img/star_x_orange.gif) 0 0 repeat-x;

1. To place this code, Goto Design -> Edit HTML -> Expand Widget Template.
2. Backup your template.
3. Search for <style>
4. Place above code before this tag.

The first rule-set applies to the outer DIV. It defines the width for the entire set of stars. The width determines how many stars will be visible. In our case, we have stars that are 11 pixels wide and we want 5 of them – hence 55 pixels wide. The faint star image is set as the background image.

The second rule-set applies to the inner DIV. The height needs to be the height of your star image. The bright star image is set as the background image.

This all combines to create our example:

You can think of it as two layered boxes. The lower one is filled with the faint stars and takes up the entire width. The upper one contains the bright stars and it’s width is what conveys the bar’s meaning.

Did this tutorial solved your problem? Is it Pretty simple? Write in your comments to keep this blog alive and share your experiences too.

You can ask your questions in Comments.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

How to find out Human Head Weight?

How much your head weighs? If someone asks this question, it seems to be funny to us. But did we ever try to get answer of this question? How can I weigh my head?
Well, sometimes answer to this question may be terrible as well!!! Because some people might think that to weigh a head, I should ask some magician who will detach my head, then weigh it and again fix it.

What about lying down and placing head on a scale?

Thank God, Science has answer to it. So we should not rely upon above solutions.

1. Get a (very) large metric measuring tub placed into another tub and a friend.

2. Ask him to tie a rope on your leg and hang you upside down.

3. Fill the tub with enough water to fully submerge your head.

4. Make sure the tub is fully filled with water and allow some time so that water gets rest.

5. Ask your friend to drop you down, so that your head is completely dunked into the water. You’re your mouth closed and puckered to get rid of as much air as possible.

6. As soon as had dunks into the tub, excess water will come out in the outer tub.

7. Now, measure volume of water displaced in cubic centimeters. Water has a density of 1 gram per cubic centimeter. Thus, the volume of displaced water in cubic centimeter should be equal in number to the mass of the displacing object in grams. Here, displacing object is our head.

Why This Method?
Water is major and important things to all living beings. In some organisms, up to 90% of their body weight composed of water. Talking about Human body, Up to 60% of the human body is water, brain is composed of 70% water and lungs are nearly 90% water. Lean muscle tissue contains about 75% water by weight, as is the brain; body fat contains 10% water and bone has 22% water. About 83% of our blood is water, which helps digest our food, transport waste, and control body temperature. And finally Scientists have discovered that Human Head consists of 90% of water.
Hence, this method will give you 90% accurate results. Average Human Skull weighs around 4 to 5.5 KG.
So, next time when your friends ask you question that how much your head weighs. Don’t forget to follow up TechSac suggested method.
Do write in your comments and Don’t forget to share this article with your friends if you liked it.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Why buttered toast falls butter side down?

Have you ever observed a Buttered toast? A Buttered toast that is falling from your dinning table, kitchen table or platform where you often butter your bread slices. If you have observed it carefully you will find that the toast has fallen to the floor - butter side down!!!!

In ancient Rome, parents apparently visibly worried about their children's toast falling and landing buttered-side down, since the breakfast table accident supposedly forecasted as bad luck. So, does a floor mysteriously favours butterry side? Or Butter is so heavy that it always flips bread and make it fall - Butter side down? Or Any Other Myths?

Lets explore from Physics point of view, Why Buttered toast falls butter side down?

As per law of physics it all depends how you drop bread slice, from where you drop bread slice and how big is your toasted bread slice. All of this technical factors contribute in deciding whether a toast should fall butter side up or butter side down.

Now, lets analyze why this happens?
Most of the time when we place our Buttered Toasts, Buterred side will be always up. As most of the kitchen tables and work surfaces like kitchen platforms are about waist height. When buttered toast falls from such surfaces, it can manages 180 deegrees rotation or you can say half rotation before it hits the floor. And result is butter side down.

What should be done to make fall toasts, buttered side up?
Answer is simple.
1. Better build your work surfaces twice as high Or
2. Make smaller bread slices so that they have time to complete the rotation.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Facebook VideoCalling Feature Reviewed

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has announced last week that the company had planned to “…launch something awesome” this week. Finally we know what he meant by saying this. Facebook has unveiled a new feature that allows you to make video calls right from your browser, just like Google+ does It with its Hangout feature. It was in news that something was cooking between Facebook and Skype, and now we know what that was.

The new video calling feature has been made possible with the partnership between FB and Skype. Now, don’t worry because you don’t need to install Skype but a small add-in will do the job of integrating Skype video calling feature within your browser. On the hardware front, you need a webcam, a headset or speakers and a microphone. Off course this is what a basic hardware need to do any video calling.

How To Set-UP?
You will be directed to the main page which has a video explaining the feature.

Get Started button on the left of the screen will let you start the feature.
A chat window will pop up on the right hand side, listing all your online Facebook contacts.

Click on one of them to proceed.

If this method does not suit you, Try out this alternate method:

You can start the chat directly from your online friend's profile by clicking on the Call button located on the right hand side of the screen near the top.

After chat window is open, click on the camera icon to initiate a video call.

For first time users Set up Video Calling?

Dialogue is necessary. Click on Set Up to continue.

When prompted, install plug-in. This will help you integrate with Skype video calling feature.

Once the installation is complete, the call is made automatically.
If your friend does not have this plugin he will be prompted to install the same. After he finishes installing the plug-in, the call gets connected.

As the feature is still in Beta stages please don’t expect smooth ride. You can expect few roadblocks before finally getting connected.
But finally when it once it works, you are going to get addicted to it. Your friends can be seen in a large video window, while a smaller thumbnail of your video feed can be seen near a corner of this window, which is similar to the Skype video chat window. The overall quality is satisfactory, but not that good as Skype. Audio quality is as good as Skype.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Is your Point and Shoot Camera HDyed or 3Dyed Yet? Demystify PS Cameras

This quick buying guide on Point and Shoot Camera is intended for end users who want to purchase new Point and Shoot camera. Confused customers who have little or no knowledge on how to buy Point and Shoot camera. Most of these consumers have very well used their mobile phones cameras and they want to discover photography world. It is very easy to say that the cameras on mobile phones don’t really provide same kind of performance and functionality as a digital camera would. And hence the demands of Point and Shoot Cameras are increasing in market. Where there is demand, there are competent players. What is Megapixles? Are Megapixels more important in camera? More Megapixels you have the better is the camera. These are some of the myths and questions related to Point and Shoot cameras. I hope this quick guide will clear most of your doubts related to Point and Shoot Cameras.

Megapixel Myth!
“I have 10 MP camera so my camera is more better then your 7 MP camera.” This is the dumbest claims new Point and Shoot Camera users will claim. It’s not the case, that higher the resolution higher the camera power. Point and shoot cameras resolution will depend on a very tiny size sensor. This sensor has certain limitations, beyond a certain point you aren’t getting any more details from it.

Point to remember in Layman Language: Megapixels are used to determine how much big picture you want to print. If you want to take out a poster with 10 x 10 sizes, then even 7 Megapixel camera will also do the same job as your 14 megapixel camera. So don’t go out hunting for a 14 MP point and shoot camera.

Optical Zoom is more important than Digital Zoom!
Most of the companies will advertise their camera at lower price with 14 MP resolution. The thing they don’t publicize is, camera’s Optical zoom capability. Cheapest cameras today come with a 3x or 4x optical zoom lens.
Optimum Recommended Optical Zoom is 6x. This zoom level is sufficient for Indoor as well as outdoor photography.

Digital zoom is accomplished electronically, with no adjustment of the camera’s optic. Hence, it is recommended to avoid digital zoom. If you use Digital zoom in your pictures, this will only help deteriorate your image quality.
Finally, if you want to become wildlife photographer, then larger optical zoom lens camera is recommended. Again, this will empty your pockets a few bucks more. Utrazoom or Superzoom optical zoom cameras range anywhere between 12x to 30x. The quality of zoom lens may not be excellent, but they can serve your purpose.

Manual focus are meant for Serious Photographers
Manual focus camera is one in which the operator has to adjust the focus of the lens by hand. So, many of our new passionate photographer colleagues who are newly exploring Digital Photography may not be interested in this Manual focus stuff. But, If you’re a slightly more serious photographer and want to experiment with your camera, look for cameras that have a manual focus option. All DSLR cameras and the recently introduced micro four-third cameras come with a manual focus feature.

Aperture priority (Av) and shutter priority (Pv):
Aperture priority and Shutter Priority modes allow some more control over your camera. They are handy when you’re clicking fast action shots or shooting in low-light areas. While camera manufacturers very proudly display all sorts of colour profiles and shooting modes, very little emphasis is given to the aperture and shutter priority modes.

Photos look different in Laptop or PC? Camera Display size will minimize this problem:
Camera’s Display Size and Resolution are two key factors to keep in mind. A camera with a large screen is a great thing to have to view photos while shooting. This will ensure, what you see is what you get. Many shaking blurs are not visible if camera display is small or low resolution. But when we see it in a bigger screen of our PC, they will be visible clearly. The higher the density, the better it’s bound to be. This is not to say that all high resolution displays are excellent, but it’s an easy way to filter out the good screens from the bad.

HD (High Definition) Video recording is NexGen capability
Introduction of HDTV and 3DTV have pushed Camera manufacturing companies and Users to introduce and use these video advancements respectively. Now a day, camera manufacturers are providing HD resolution recording on almost all point and shoot cameras. Look out for cameras that have a minimum of 720p video recording facility. Make sure that the recording frame rate is a minimum of 24fps. Well this video quality isn’t directly comparable to a good HD camcorder, but it’s still good to have feature.

Camera Build Quality and Aesthetics
Build quality and aesthetics of the camera are important factors to inspect while buying. Look for a camera that comes with a solid build.
The Zoom button is the busiest button in your camera after some of the buttons like directional keys. Loose Zoom triggers and buttons means that you’re likely to visit service center after few months down the line. It would be always suggested to visit a mall or a camera showroom and try to get hands on feel of the product, before you finally buy it.

Exclusive Touchscreen and 3D features?
Touchscreen and 3D features are really needed to have? Some of the manufacturers have tried focusing their efforts on such newer features.
Touchscreen: For features such as touchscreen you should inspect the interface and the touch functionality. They have to be flawless, to be practical.
3D: Although a neat feature to have, but I prefer to wait a while till the technology matures. There are very few users using 3D TVs and so the only ones viewing the images you shoot will be you. Since 3D technology is still in its early stages, you’re very likely to end up with an average quality camera with hell lots of bugs.

FREE!!! Most attractive words for Consumers
To make offers more attractive and competent, manufacturers bundle lots of freebies with the product. Look out for offers where free memory cards, carry pouches and tripods are bundled with the cameras. Of course, be careful and make sure that you’re not being overcharged for those freebies. If a bundled memory card is of 8GB capacity and higher, it might be a good freebie to have. Otherwise, 4GB SD cards are really cheap and are worth no more than Rs. 400 in the market. Cheap pouches are also available for that much.

If you keep all these points in mind I think it will be hard to go wrong with your next camera purchase.

Please comment on this article, as your comments will try to improve our quality of articles. Also, do let us know if you want to know more about cameras. And if you like it, dont forget to share below

Friday, July 1, 2011

Nokia Reinvents Older Generation Mobile phones

Well there’s something new in Nokia’s sac. Nokia is reinventing the older generation mobile phones. Now this is what a good news for all older generation mobile phone user. Nokia will be definitely appreciated for this good move. Nokia has announced firmware updates for their Symbian 3.2 and Symbian 5 platforms. Few refreshing changes for handsets are also being announced.

Few of the changes which are expected:

New emoiticons in MMSes.

Upgrading to Nokia browser v7.3: This browser is available for Latest Symbian Anna running smartphones. Nokia claims that this will result in faster, better browing experience and it will also support for International Domain Names (IDN).

Updates in OVI Maps: Symbian 3.2 handsents will have OVI Maps 3 SR4 and Symbian 5 mobile phones will receive an update to Ovi Maps 3 SR6. SR4 has various features like Indoor positioning through WiFi as well as travel and recommendation services. Whereas SR6 will add public transport lines and check-in services to social networking sites.

As of now updates will be available for Nokia C6-00 and Nokia 5230. And this will be rolled out in progression for the rest of the handsets slowly and steadily.
Here’s a list of the handsets that can be upgraded:

Symbian 3.2
Nokia E72
Nokia E52
Nokia E5
Nokia C5-00
Nokia 6700 slide

Symbian 5
Nokia 5800 XpressMusic
Nokia 5530 XpressMusic
Nokia 5230
Nokia 5235
Nokia 5250
Nokia C6-00
Nokia C5-03
Nokia X6
Nokia N97 mini

So, if you own any of these handsets and have upgraded your firmware then please let us know about your experience through the comments.

Quit Smoking by Motivational SMSes

Want to see your loved ones quit smoking? Then, send them motivational text messages, as they double their chances of giving up the habit, scientists say.
A British Medical Research Council study, published in the medical journal The Lancet, found that participants were twice as likely to expel their habit after receiving messages designed to encourage quit smoking.

Dr Caroline Free, of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine who led the “txt2stop” trial, said, “Text messages are a very convenient way for smokers to receive support to quit. “People described txt2stop as being like having a friend encouraging them or an angel on their shoulder. It helped people resist the temptation to smoke.”

The trial tested the effects of motivational messages designed to encourage quitting on almost 3000 smokers. The messages, designed by experts with the help of smokers, provided encouragement and advice on keeping off weight while quitting, and help with craving.

For example, one of the message read, “This is it! – QUIT DAY, throw away all your fags. TODAY is the start of being QUIT forever, you can do it!” Another, focusing on craving, read, “Cravings last less than five minutes on average. To help distract yourself, try sipping a drink slowly until the craving is over.”

In the trial, randomly selected smokers received five text messages a day for five weeks, followed by three per week for the next six months. People were able to receive instant messages at times of need by texting the word “crave” or “lapse”.
A similar sized “control” group of smokers were sent texts simply thanking them for their participation, requesting confirmation of contact details or mentioning a range of topics not connected to smoking.

The results showed a 10.7 percent success rate for those receiving the motivational texts compared with 4.9 per cent for members of the control group.

Dr Max Parmer, director of the clinical trials units of the Medical Research Council, said, “Smoking kills more than five million people yearly, and two out of every three smokers’ have said at some point that they would like to give up.”

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