Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Beginnings

Can't believe its 1st Jan 2009 tomorrow! I really don't want 2008 to end because it has been a fantastic year. Both ups and downs of course but the highs are much more memorable than the lows. The most important thing i learnt in 2008 is to 'Never Let an Opportunity Slip Away'. Making a note of it here so that i'll remember it in 2009.

Most memorable highlights for 2008

- Getting selected as National Information Systems Manager of AIESEC in Sri Lanka
- Attending AIESEC Evolve conference in Singapore
- Starting my internship at IFS - Colombo

The purpose of this post however is to record my New Year's Resolutions. I've come up with just 1 for 2009 and have my heart set on sticking to it.

New Year's Resolution: Will plan everything ahead and use a weekly planner and stick to schedule as much as possible!

Oh, and I've finally managed to change my blog template. Not sure how long i'll keep this one but I just love the short haired girl in pants idea because that's so me!

Also on my NewYear's ToDo list is to make more frequent blog postings. Still have to make one about my internship at IFS - Colombo. It's been great so far and i've got loads to say about it. Hope to make that posting soon.

Goodbye to 2008 and Hello 2009! Have a great New Year!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Movie Review - Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants

Great movies! Loved both parts 1 & 2. Made me realize how great it is to have girlfriends you can really depend on. Its more of a what i'd call a 'girly movie' but some guys i know liked the movie too. Wish they'd have a part 3. Gonna get all my friends to watch this!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Turn your speakers on!

Music Playlist at

This is da coolest widget i've seen so far! If you know of anything better do let me know:)

Monday, October 20, 2008

AIESEC Alumnus Wins 2008 Nobel Peace Prize

One of the things that drew me to AIESEC was its vision of peace. To hear that a former AIESECer was awarded the 2008 Nobel Peace Prize just goes on to confirm how powerful AIESEC is in creating change agents!

Here is the article posted on about Martti Ahtisaari the 2008 winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

In Sri Lanka AIESEC is only little over a decade old and we are still growing as an organisation. To find out more about current happenings in AIESEC Sri Lanka please see our website

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Problem with Google Apps...

AIESEC in Sri Lanka is currently using google apps email service which allows our members to have our own emails with our own domain name [].

Google apps email works excellently [ js like in gmail]. The pluses are we get our own domain name in the email address and all members using the same domain in their email automatically appear in the shared Contact List [can see all the emails of all our members in ur contacts whithout having to add them manually]. All this for free if you use the 'Std version'of google apps.

Only I have a small problem as admin that when I delete a user[ std version allows only 200 users, that is 200 email address for your domain] that user doesn't get deleted from the shared contact list. So every time I delete a user from google apps I have to inform all other users on my domain to delete that user from their contact list. Quite problematic actually.

Since google apps automatically adds all newly created users to the shared 'Contact List' if they would also automatically remove all deleted users from the shared contact list life would be swell!

I did however report this in the google apps discussion forum. Have to wait and see if I get a reply...

Anyways having email is great for me becoz harini is a very common name and i can't get a harini@domain for any other free email service!

So id give google apps 9/10 inspite of the above problem!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Natasha's story..

Natasha is a nangi I spoke to in the bus today. It was the usual 255 bus ride for me from Galkissa [ a.k.a. Mt. Lavinia] to university. I rarely speak with anyone in the bus unless I meet someone I know from uni but this nangi who I sat next to suddenly started talking to me and within the span of 30 minutes of the bus ride she told me a touching story. I have some doubts about it.. Still whether it is true or not it is a sad story and I pray she has a better life..

Natasha said she was studying in year 10 at a school in galkissa [ i don't quite remember the name but she said it was a mixed school]. Her ambition is to be a doctor. She was impressed to learn that I was studying engineering [ and i thought i saw a flash of envy in her eyes, but that could've been my imagination]. She has 3 younger brothers and in the course of the conversation she indirectly revealed that her father passed away in the 255 bus bomb about 2 months back [ i did not know what to say at this point..]. She said she wanted to enter university to show off to her relatives who had made fun of her..

But I am not quite sure of her story, for one thing although she said she was returning from school she was not in uniform and she was not carrying any books, just a transparent file with the chemical table visible on top [ she did say chemistry was her favourite subject though but do they teach chemistry in grade 10??]. She asked me when I will be coming again in the bus [ was this because she wanted to collect money from me?].

But she didn't ask me for any money. She even changed 5 rupees for me so that I can collect my change from the bus conductor without any trouble. She seemed genuinely happy to have someone to talk to and genuinely determined about her ambition of becoming a doctor.

In the end I did give her my home phone number though, in case she wanted help with her studies. Was that a wise thing to do? I dont know..

Anyways whether Natasha's story is all true or not I wish her good luck and hope she finds a happier life..

Monday, June 16, 2008

Hardware Engineering for Girls - part I

Why is it that boys are generally better at hardware engineering than girls? Well in my university very few of the girls studying computer engineering have a good knowledge in dealing with computer hardware. Why? Maybe becoz girls are generally not expected to get down and dirty with machines.. Well whatever, bottomline anyone studying computer engineering should have some basic knowledge about maintaining the h/w too. And this is how i set out to be a h/w expert:)

First I browsed YouTube for video tutorials on h/w. This what i found. It's a complete guide for anyone learning about setting up h/w for the first time..

Next I opened up the my PC and did a bit of exploring. Although I have opened my PC before to change the RAM or clock battery, i never opened it up just for taking a look around and figuring things out. My usual policy is, as long as it works don't mess with it.

After my exploring was done I fitted everything back and switched on the PC. Omg, i got a error message saying "Looking for IDE channels..." and then "Please insert Boot CD and press enter". Looked like my policy was right!

Now I had a real reason to open up the PC [its not working, lol!]. So went and opened it up again and realized I hadn't fitted back the power supply cable going to the DVD ROM [ i had pulled this out during my exploring]. So fitted it back and rebooted. Worked just fine.

So it really doesn't hurt to do a bit of exploring after all..

Saturday, May 31, 2008

AIESEC Evolve conference in Singapore

Wow, where do I start. This is gonna be a very long post. So here goes..

Well I thought I won't be able to attend the conference because my university didn't approve my leave at first [ well it was the holidays but there were still other issues..]. Then just days before the conference I got the approval, with the help of my friends in university, tnx loads to them:)
I already had a ticket due to leave early morning on the 6th. I got the approval on the 5th morning, packed my bags in the afternoon and was out of the country the very next morning! Wouldn't have made it without the help of my family of course.. especially mom! tnx mom:)

When I arrived in Singapore I joined the rest of the Sri Lankan delegation who were also from the University of Moratuwa[Colombo South Local Committee]and had a wonderful time for the 5 days of the conference!

The theme of the conference was 'From Social Entrepreneurship to Social Intrapreneurship'. I learned a lot at the conference and it did help me evolve:)But most of all I met AIESECers from 14 different countries and made loads of new friends.

I had just one day left after the conference for sightseeing and shopping. In the end I spent most of that day at sentosa island. I was a bit dissapointed they didn't have bunjee jumping[that's definitely on my 'to do some day' list] but i got to ride on a sky tram which was quite exciting.. I also got to see the pink dolphins who were really cute.

All in all it was a fascinating experience. AIESEC in Singapore did an amazing job organizing the conference, hats off to them:)

Friday, May 2, 2008

Free stuff over the internet

As someone who recently converted from a slow dial-up connection (52kbps at max)to a broadband connection I am just beginning to discover the 'so far undiscovered treasures of the internet'.

My current favorite treasures are You Tube [ its fantastic to finally be able to watch streaming videos in real time over the net] and LimeWire. Of the 2 i guess LimeWire is the real treasure coz its become my doorway to free stuff over the internet!

LimeWire is a software that enables P2P file sharing. You can use it to search for music, videos, ebooks or software that you are looking for. The program searches if any of its other users have what you are looking for on their pcs. If yes they will download it directly from their pc to yours! Its absolutely free! I am not sure to what extent copyright laws are broken but im not too bothered.. Anyways I am a big supporter of having free stuff over the net. Id very much like to see the internet becoming an equalizer in that way..

As all things LimeWire has both good and bad...

Choice [when there are multiple files with same content u can decide which file to download depending on the file rating]
Pause [ U can always run the download in the background while doing another task and u can always pause it and shut down the program and come back whenever..]


Virus [ u might come across viruses disguized as other content. how well u ellude these depends on wit and the strenght of ur anti virus]
Limited [ Dont expect to find evrything u r looking for.. Availability depends on popularity and how lucky u r!]

LimeWire is opensource and absolutely free. Really worth trying out...

No more googling evry damn thing im looking for.. A good thing, especially since google is becoming more and more copyright conscious and hiding away free content sites where u can't find them...

Monday, April 21, 2008

This is the International Year of the Potato

No, I'm not joking. Find out why the UN thinks potatoes are so important..


Let's say there is a problem between you and another person. What do you do if the other person simply refuses to discuss the problem with you? Refuses to even listen? I faced such a situation today and I admit I was deeply hurt and stunned because this person is someone I respected and looked up to.

I am a strong believer in the power of negotiation, especially in conflict resolution.

My country, Sri Lanka, is suffering under the burden of over 2 decades of conflict between the government and the L.T.T.E. The L.T.T.E. leader Velupillai Prabhakaran refuses to come to the negotiating table with the current government.

Because the L.T.T.E. is unwilling to compromise and to even discuss matters with the government the war continues in the north and the death toll rises, hundreds of thousands of people are internally displaced and people of Sri Lanka live their lives under the continuous sufferings of WAR.

How can 2 parties solve their differences if one party refuses to talk with the other? Most of us must know at least one such conflict where one person stubbornly refuses to talk to the other and as a result the problem between them festers. Whether the matter is related to work, relationships or any other matter the final result will be the same, aggravating the problem instead of solving it.

In the end all I can say is that I have totally lost the respect I had for this person..

Friday, April 18, 2008

About me..

I am Harini Sirisena. A 3rd year undergraduate in computer science & engineering at the University of Moratuwa, Sri Lanka. I am also a member of AIESEC, the world's largest university students' organization. Outside of university and AIESEC I am currently following a diploma in business management. If not for engineering I would have preferred to study law, but fortunately for my friends and family I got into engineering instead:)

My aspiration is to become a social entrepreneur/intrapreneur and to use technology to aid the development of my country.

I saw many problems...I asked, why somebody didn't do anything about them.Then I realized, I WAS SOMEBODY.