Friday, 14 June 2013

Masterchef entry by Street Food Congress

We all are aware of the fact that a major chunk of the world populace relies heavily on the most unstructured culinary culture in the world, ‘Street Food’. No wonder, it has managed to stay in the hearts and minds of so many people around the corner.

Singapore is one such country that has been into the arena of Street Food for long celebrating new cuisines and making innovations. The new blend of tastes takes you to the happy hunting of delicious and ecstatic food. Besides being an iconic food structure of land, today we see a new Singapore emerging successfully out of its flourishing hawker centres.

Concluding its debut year in Singapore on June 9th, ‘Street Food Congress’ was a 10 day feasting celebration. Started off on the 31st of May, the variety and diversity in food led the visitors to experience the lip-smacking street food.

The World Street Food Congress was sensibly carried out by Makansutra, KF Seetoh serving as its brainchild. The food carnival was supported by the Singapore Tourism Board that had three main components

1. The World Street Food Dialogue: A two-day event of conference and networking was held on June 3rd to 5th. Here they had panel discussions on the enhancement of new ideas on the street food culture. There were talks of steps to be taken in order to preserve the culinary heritage; from encouraging Singapore youths to continue in the hawker industry to promote street food industry on a global international scale encouraging varied food traditions. Hee, the Congress ‘Food’ Mission meant encouraging other nations to come forward while presenting and promoting their food status.

2. The World Street Food Jamboree: A 10-days feasting Jamboree by at least 35 best street food masters from around the world. The fete saw 37 stalls from 10 major countries dedicated specially for culinary mavericks and food hedonists. There were presentations, food discussions, lectures held by world renowned food promoters.

3. The World Street Food Awards: They didn't have just the lectures, food and fun but recognition as well. The Food Committee climaxed with an Award Function on the 9th of June. The Awards aimed to make merry with the new menus and food innovation. While also foster skill development and self employment prospects. The Awards were meant to give international recognition to street food icons representing their nations with a sense of pride.

This food junction at Singapore was a huge hit that was attended by round about 80,000 people. Visitors were seen enjoying tea breaks, delicious lunches and gorging on the jamboree.

On a disappointing side, the Food Fest encountered some criticism as well. The response gathered by the public indicated the dearth of shuttle to manage such a huge crowd. According to the feedback the venue was not appropriate as well as convenient. However, reports say that many Private and Government organizations have come up offering many new locales in the near future. There seemed to be criticism due to the absence of African and Middle Eastern countries, however, the authorities at Singapore said that they are positive enough to encourage nations to bring their respective food cultures and traditions into notice for the next year event.

A venue by the name of La Guerrerense formed the most awaited que to taste the dishes. The amazing team of La Guerrerense stroke a massive hit by their delicious “seafood tostadas”. The world class Jamboree by the renowned master chefs of different countries aimed to make people aware of some lesser known street cuisines and strengthen communities by the bond of food and love. Its time we celebrate the richness and liveliness of street food to foster deeper encouragement of communities and strengthen the scattered energies of street food players worldwide.

Monday, 13 May 2013

A thousand memoirs on a school trip to Italy!

Are you a Food Enthusiast? Because you seriously need to peep into the culinary calendar of a nation before deciding on a trip. And not just food, other considerations say weather, budget, cultural events, seasonal atmosphere and ambiance prove to be of utmost importance.

Italy has strived to be amongst those nations hugely contributing to the cultural and historic heritage to the whole of Europe and of course to the World! A nation indulged in offering world class food, music, heritage or art, Italy hosts events and festivals of international significance carrying forward a vibrant and lush style of its own. The country’s vibrant style has only come out of its glorious and celebrated history.

Winters were on it’s way to arrive. It was ‘special’. Absolutely! As this time our School authorities have planned to take its high school students on a trip to Italy. That irresistible feeling and all my crazy friends - We were ready to boast!! Witty poses, random clicks, capturing the famous attractions and worldwide popularity - all for a once-in-a-lifetime experience. (You never know, Life’s too unpredictable!)

Adding some percentage to the world of 46.1 million tourists a year, we ‘banged on’ to the fifth highest tourist earning nation. The symbolic hills, the sacred Vatican city, imperial Roman landmarks accompanied by the best of cuisine and fresh fashion; Italy was more than successful in gathering and luring tourists across the globe. We were pretty excited to explore Italian, a romance language, related to other Latin languages: Spanish, French, Portuguese and Romanian. However, the official Italian language spoken today originated from the Tuscan dialect (of Latin). Tuscany a.k.a “Birthplace of Renaissance” was a flourishing state in Italy having seen the birth of noted men - Galileo Galilei, Leonardo da Vinci, Petrarch, Dante and many others.

On our way to Florence - The birthplace of Renaissance, we got introduced to a dazzling app -RouteIt, none other by a native of Florence. This amazing app takes you on a virtual tour on both Android and iOS devices. We covered some of the most  famous and historical Italian place such as Florence Cathedral, Piazza della Repubblica, Orsanmichele, Piazza della Signoria, Palazzo Vecchio, Uffizi, Ponte Vecchio, Palazzo Pitti, Basilica of Santa Croce, National Central Library.

Rome stands the "Eternal city" and also "Caput Mundi" (Capital in Latin), to the 25th most-developed country where Milan was home to fashion and finance. The one amongst the richest countries in the field of art and culture house a state that locked it’s own gates at night - Vatican City. We all were simply bowled by the uniqueness of the festivals and operatic seasons offered by Milan’s La Scala and the Verona Arena. Opera came out in the 17th century by Italian music composer Claudio Monteverdi in theaters "Teatro alla Scala" in Milan or ancient "Arena" in Verona.The compositions in19th and early 20th centuries on the birthplace of Opera are reckoned as the most famous operas ever performed.

Dating the country’s architectural achievements from the late 14th to 16th century, Italian art have had three phases - Early Christian, Romanesque, and Gothic (Now that we were school students we penned down some facts). The homeland of Palladianism and Neoclassical architecture got lit up by the museum works of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Caravaggio, and many more. Following the construction of arches and domes, Italian architecture was flooded with masterpieces from Saint Peter's Basilica in Rome (world's largest church) to The Santa Maria del Fiore cathedral in Florence, (world’s biggest brick dome).
Therefore, the art cities of Italy are counted amongst the most travelled and explored destinations in international cultural tourism.

The Nation with maximum number of World Heritage Sites showered the guests from Canada (Us) with the relaxed culture of Italian food. (Today you see numerous restaurants operating from different corners of the world having Italian cuisines and flavors. In large cities, you would see increasing number of Italian population spreading their love and culture). Though initially it was challenging for us to grasp the stubborn Italian words. But all was sorted when a Native introduced us to LingoDiction.  
LingoDiction is an offline app for iOS users making easy for wanderers like us get an idea of common words of other foreign languages along with their audio pronunciation. Do you know the English speaking population in Italy accounts for 34% from the eligible population of 20,300,000!

P.S. - We were so much moved by this breathtaking app that in turn inspired us to try our hand on the national anthem of Italy “Inno de Memeli”.

Friday, 10 May 2013

Lingual Logics

Learning a new language brings many funny instances. You never know it meant something else in some other languages. And if they have an entirely unrelated meaning, it becomes a bigger source of pleasure. Let me tell you some words I came across:

I used to watch Shinchan, the cartoon series with a Japanese kid, with my nephew. The name of Shinchan’s dog is Shiro. I thought its just another meaningless words for pets like tommy and all. Whereas, to my amusement, Shiro in Japanese means white in English. And it struck me that yes! the dog was white. Quite justifiable, but amusing.

Mandarin, as we know, is a language used in China, is also a word used for citrus fruits in English. I mean what would the following sentence imply “Mandarin has a flavour of bitterness.”

‘Shove’ (pronounced as shuv) is a word in Hindi that means corpse. I wonder how would we take this sentence - “That shove was necessary to make things possible.“

Hell in German means Light. So next time, if you yell at someone saying “Go to hell”, be sure that you specify which ‘hell’ you mean.

Hose means trouser in German. So next time you see a fire, grab a ‘hose’ and... wear it! You will need to run.

See, what fun you can have while learning languages! I opened the word-stock I had. What about you?

Monday, 6 May 2013

Rendezvous with non-English speakers

Being an English speaker among English-speaking natives, I had never imagined the fun of being with non-English speakers. I was in Switzerland for an official conference, when I started experiencing the effects of lingual change. Let me tell you some of the legendary moments I can still giggle on.

I decided to delight myself in a French restaurant. The menu card in French looked like a crossword puzzle. But, somehow I managed to make noodles out of Nouilles due to a small graphic after the name. The French serveur, who was almost on skateboard all the while, stood by me for at least 10 minutes to absorb the details of my order. I explained him the whole procedure of making noodles to escape any kind of bad experiences. With my loud actions and mimes, I was able to tell him that I do not want non-vegetarian touch in my Nouilles. After a while I was served with delicious looking noodles to raise my temptations, which brewed away as soon as I sniffed. It was cooked in FISH OIL!  

Next morning, I had to reach a conference via public transport. I googled about the route options that would be available to me. I had to take a train to Paradeplatz, for which I had to hire a taxi to reach the station. I had to hurl from one taxi to another with one word on my tongue Paradeplatz. I asked to every taxi but all I was getting was a perplexed look. I showed the spelling I had jotted down last night to a driver who pronounced it differently with some silent consonants and different vowel sound. Pa -ra -da - pla - z (with T silent) or t(with Z silent) Huh! I should have known that!

When people around you, suddenly start talking in their native language while looking at you, certainly they ought to be discussing you, suspense reaches the climax. You try hard to recall all your kinesics’ lessons to make out what their body language is saying. Soon I realized that it is far more difficult to understand the language of whole body without the language of tongue. And, I kept running my thoughts to try and catch some context. That is a very awkward position to be in, believe me.

Next day, I happened to meet a native speaker in the strange land who, like an angel, ebbed all my hitches with single sway of LingoDiction. With LingoDiction, an offline app for iOS, I got to know all the frequently used words with their audio pronunciation. Then, I faced the same bunch of foreign language speakers with my armours ready to their attacks. I pretended that I cannot understand like before but I could atleast make out the context of their conversation which, to my embarrassment, wasn’t related to me at all.

One more thing I and that angel native did. We reversed the trick on non-English speakers. We make them suspect our topic of conversation, which made them self-conscious. We had a furious laugh before and after the act. Cheers to LingoDiction!

Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Words at your hand with LD SAT

Preparing for an English language examination and memorizing words and their attributes can be a Herculean Task for anyone. But in this era of smart on-the-go devices, how can we not find an app that can raise our proximity to the expert level of the language. I found one- LingoDiction SAT, an app by MediaAgility. 

Let me elaborate on a few points why this app is among my favorites.

  1. It is more than a dictionary or thesaurus. This app offers the meanings, synonyms, antonyms, usage, origin and root for more than 6000 words. It was amazing to find out even the most unusual words.
  2. You can quiz yourself. Set the number of questions you want to take under the category of your choice and get quizzed! The app maintains a scorecard of your performance, which can pride or embarrass you later on.
  3. Play games. I fell into nostalgic state when I played the 8 mini-games including Scramble, Match it, Guess the Word and Army of Synonyms. It is a unique combination of education and entertainment. You test your English vocab while games maintain the thrill.
  4. Share your scores. I flaunted my quiz scores on my facebook timeline. You can do the same. However, you need to score first. Wink!
  5. It’s user-friendly. Unlike any other app, LingoDictionSAT never takes its users as already the master of language, it respects new users. With uncluttered interface and help screens, it was easy to sail across the first time.
  6. The combination of book and cube in one app emits that required touch of Edutainment. Edutainment, I believe is the best theme to facilitate learning process for any living being.  
  7. I can practice English language for as much time as I want. The boredom and monotonous text would not be able to bother me anymore. It is preparation for any exam in USA, UK, Australia or Canada, I know I can practice English for hours. While I am using this app for IELTS, my friends are using it for SAT, TOEFL, GRE and GMAT.
  8. If I don’t like anything in LD SAT, want to offer suggestions or feel like adding my knowledge to the app, I can do it! There is a feedback option that keeps me satisfied that this app is for our personal convenience.
  9. The words I have found difficult, the words I often forget and other important words can be stapled in self-fabricated categories. This allows me to keep those words handy for future reference. Hence, LD SAT became my ideal SAT tutor.
  10. I get an option to download 3 types of packages with 2,000 words each.

Seldom do we find such a vast English tutorial, which has a plus point of interactivity. I keep on adding words to my vocab, so that I can score better in English games. The more I score in English vocab games, the more I am assured of my performance in entrance examinations.

English language learning has indeed been made easy by LingoDiction SAT. I can leave my English vocabulary worries on this app.  

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Contriving apps for mobile computing

Remember the era when buying a mobile phone would mean an added supremacy to your status in society or group? Well, it surely was! But mobile phones that time were just limited to receiving and rejecting calls or sending and receiving text messages. All this seemed to be so amusing and had eased up lives to some extent. But the mobile world developers had already foreseen the versatility that this gadget could provide in the future. Thus, here we are with mobile phones now addressed as Smartphones. But why smartphones? All credits to the wonderful mobile app store that has given a whole new dimension to the usability of a bulky, complex device that once was; now turned into a compact, sleek and user friendly gadget!

Mobile App Store phenomenon is just a few years old but has proved to be the most workable and a holistic aspect in mobile computing. Now your mobile phone is no longer just a walky-talky cum pager concocted into one gadget but is a more astute compact technology.

By App Store we mean any online store offering services to users to download and browse various apps for Mobile computing. The Apps that we see in an App Store can be downloaded either for free or for a price depending on the purpose and usability options of a user. They range from an array of categories provided to make it easier for the users to pick the most desired app of their choice. So if you are a traveller, a businessperson often hopping overseas, a language enthusiast or simply a smartphone user, there is something for everyone out there, for every purpose.

But the confusion arises when you are wondering how to pick the best apps for mobile. First of all keep in mind the purpose for which you are downloading the app, then check for its reviews by other users or the developers, use social media or search engines to know more about the app, and then finally download. There are innumerable apps for mobile customization, photography, games, education, communication, shopping, Travel etc. and the list goes on.

The App store phenomenon is surely here to stay, making it easier for the users to navigate, learn and explore stuff that was once either difficult or simply out of their reach. Now any foreign land, an alien language, exotic foods, an unknown route,etc. is all just an app away. Use wisely and live well, as the apps for mobile computing experience would just keep improving, making lives better and easier than ever imagined before.  

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Project World Tour - A hamlet for avid travelers!

Traveling is considered one of the best stress busting exercises by many. Are you one of them too? We promise to take away all your stress and worries and gift you with something that you are most fond of. Why only bust out stress when you can even feed on to the plenitude of landscapes, exasperating sights, unheard tales and the florid givings of the World by fellow travelers right there through your computer screens!

We know that in this Google-era where everything is served hot just with a single click, traveling to places has become easier. You can get your trips planned fully without even moving out of your comfort zone, get the best reviews about anyplace you wish to jaunt and even get some street-views of it! So, when you can depend on your social networks and search engines for this, then why not hop directly to the place and feed on with the most unknown, unseen and unheard facts about them?

Now when we have given you enough hints about what we actually plan to offer, why wait? Enter, Project World Tour. A community basically for all those souls who have set their hearts on a place very much in this universe, but cannot be physically present there instantly. Here, with Project World Tour, you can join, share pictures of your trips, describe them for others and get huge responses in return. Want more? Ok, so here is the deal. You can contribute through any platform viz. Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, YouTube, etc. and we’ll reward you with exciting getaways. Interesting, know?

Project World Tour is smart enough to help you rave about a trip you have just had virtually! So, no more waiting and simply join this community which is open for all the globetrotters like you....

Join #ProjectWorldTour on Facebook:
Follow on Twitter: @RouteIt (RoutesAroundTheWorld) 
Join #ProjectWorldTour on Google+