Tuesday, October 10, 2006

DVB connection with Insat 4A

I got Tata Sky connection today. Overall experience is good.

Buying Hardware:
First I bought a Set Top Box (STB) from local dealer. Its Thomsom DSI3207C with Tata Sky CAS (Conditional Access System) card embedded in it. I cant find any details about this Thomson DSI3207C on web. Probably a special make by Thomson for Tata Sky. It costed INR 2999/-.

Apart from this we got to pay INR 1000 towards installation charges. With that offer says connection for first 82 days is free along with 50% discount on installation charges.

Later part of discount and free stuff is simply to fool customers. When you pay that 1000 towards installation charges, dealer gives you a pre paid charge voucher for 1000 bucks. Now when you get connection you need to activate using this 1000 bucks. Out of this 1000, 500 goes towards installation and remaining 500 for 82 days based on 200 per month charges.

Instead of this, they can simply say installation charges as 500 and minimum lease period is 82 days which costs 500. And post 82 days they are offering Rs 200 per month for limited period.
Actual package and cost are not yet revealed.

So the dealer gives you STB. Once you get that you need to call up their call center 66006633 or From MTNL/BSNL lines: 1-901-425-6633. Then some newly recruited call center guy picks up the phone. To be very poilte he adds Mr.YourName before and after every sentence. Finally he takes your DigiComp No and Digicard Number which are pasted on STB box. Then he schedules installation and informs customer ID and scheduled date for installation. Installation normally happens with two days. And they mention that it takes approximately 2 hours of time.

In my case installation team turned up well in time on second day. They called up and reached home by Maruthi Van. They are professional enough.
They bought a dish, LNB, wire and complete tool kit. Checked the location for clear site at 83 degrees East towards south. That is the location for INSAT 4A in GSO. Tata Sky booked all the 12 Ku band (12 to 18 GHz microwave frequency) transponders on INSAT 4A with DVB capabilities. http://www.lyngsat.com/in4a.html And their dish and LNB by looks appears a standard make. But its just Tata SKY written over them.

Then they routed the cable through best possible way. They are well trained professionals.

And then it is an instant start. You connect cable from LNB to STB and connect RYB cables from STB to TV AV-In port. Start TV and tune to AV channel. Boop... it picks up instantly. Scans all transpoders and updates information in STB.

Quality and Channels:
Picture quality, voice and navigation options are superb. I think SKY plays roles here. Star network which got 20% stake in Tata SKY joint venture, owns and operates SKY services in UK.

The test connection is valid for first 24 hours, during that we need to activate using prepaid card of 1000.

Goodie stuff:
Some good options are favourites, ACTIVE menus, Electronic Program Guide for a week etc, option to select language if uploaded in DVD format.. Here is the list of channels offered http://www.lyngsat.com/packages/tatasky.html

Poor/Bad Stuff:
Down side is movie on demand is not in active operation. And you got keep your TV sound full to control it from STB. And Music channels are not yet activated.

To explore:
I still need to explore on how to tune into other free channels using STB.
Is it possible to use the same STB with another service provider.

As per Trai all STB's should be interoperable. But TATA SKY has some objection with DVR capabilites of STB as opposed by other licensee for DTH broadcasting services in India,Dish TV.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

medical services

How can we rate medical services? Ok leave away with rating how do we decide upon which hospital/doctor to approach when we are in need of medical help? Traditional concept of "family doctors" is fading away from our society. Medical services are becoming commercialized. Approach for diagnosis has taken an unfortunate course.
Who cares about patients past medical history and treatments? Whom to blame for this? A doctor is mere a cog in the wheel of hospital. A doctor is still considered as a respectable person in India. But what are the factors that are offending their morale.

Just to think about profession of doctors. Many of my school friends, bothers and sisters are doctors.
As on today an MBBS doctor passed out from a reputed Govt. Medical college is unable to earn 10K, whereas a normal graduate could earn more than 15K from call center jobs. And the duration of MBBS course is another factor that discourages an individual from taking up medical science for undergraduate studies. Recently I met few doctors who got MBBS degree in last two years. They are leading impoverished life. They can’t see any road map to earn 25K per month in near feature. Very few can invest money to start their own hospital and run it profitably. Hardly anyone interested in MD or any other higher education options. Of course they constitute only a section of doctor’s community. Though you can be kind enough towards one or two sections majority of them are becoming intolerable.

When looked at this problem on national front, India as a nation is loosing the ability to provide quality medical services to common man. Our medical resources are depleting. Super specialty hospitals are succeeding in providing good infrastructure and one stop service centers but loosing on quality.

Casualty gets lowest preference. It’s pathetic to here about it but that is the reality which we end up facing every now and then. Either inexperienced doctors or doctors who don’t have back to back schedules are placed there. Many of them lack courtesy towards a patient. Sense of urgency doesn't have any role to play there.

I observed diagnose process closely for out-patient cases in so called multi specialty hospitals.
Here is a brief account

First step is to blame on hereditary. Because you can’t change your ancestors its easy to convince you by telling that you are bound to get this problem, if not today some time later in your life time. It’s quite a simple formula to diagnose. And this works out well in most cases.

Second step is to choose package. There are so many pre fed packages to filter out. Here the approach is not to diagnose, but to eliminate non probables. This is because multiple choice questions are quite easy compared to fill in the blanks. So chose which packages to apply upon. And enough care should be taken while selecting so that the reports are not be available for 36 hours of time. For those 36 hours prescribe pain killers and antibiotics. Good when patient collects reports and comes back ask for improvements; obviously pain killers influence him to say "feeling better to some extent".

Third step is dependent on second step. If patient complains that there is no improvement rather its worse, refer to another department. If you are fortunate this is where the actual treatment starts. Else you may go around another round before getting referred to another department or doctor or hospital.

Fourth step is contrary to third step or self diagnosis. When you turn up to hospital to say that you recovered, you got pay fine at pharmacy for recovering so quickly. Probably four to fives doses in a day, a dose before meal a dose after meal. 1 - 1 - 1 or 1 - 0 - 1 or 0 - 0 - 1 or upon suffering. Obviously you can’t meet this dosage particularly when you know that you recovered. So either discontinue that treatment or keep those tablets for self medication at later point in time till they expire.

Are there any such tools to rate hospitals in our locality, write treatment experiences and praise / curse? Are there any web tools where we can log our medical history, search on others for symptoms or experiences? We have so many forums about computer systems where are they for human systems? We got online photos albums, journal for entertaining tidings in life, email for quick communication. We got some forums for discussing about good or bad about a car, camera, phone and etc... We rate them and refer them.

Is there anything www community does in this direction?

Providing online medical services for a free or minimal charge is secondary, but at least are there any sites or forums to bridge patients and good doctors?