Saturday May 26, 2018

From Debonair to Outlook: Frank and fearless editor Vinod Mehta leaves a legacy behind

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By Ishan Kukreti

Delhi woke up to a lazy, hazily lit Sunday morning, on 8th March,2015, unaware that a man who had driven the imagination of many, mentored many, would not be there for them anymore.

Vinod Mehta, one of the foremost journalists of the country, without whom, names like the Sunday Observer, Indian Post, The Independent, The Pioneer and the beloved Outlook would not be there, took a permanent retirement from the world. His presence is sure to be missed by many.

Vinod`s career was full of crests and troughs.  Starting with Debonair, his career took a leap from irrelevant to the relevant with the launch of Sunday Observer, 1981 and later the Outlook, 1995.

He is best known as the editor-in-chief of Outlook and his editorial decisions there shaped not just the image of the magazine as a forerunner of objective, truthful journalism but also his reputation as a no-nonsense seeker and portrayer of truth. His decision to run a story on the infamous Radia Tapes, though cost him his position at the magazine`s editorial department, exposed a fundamental rot in the information industry, that needed to be brought out in open and introspected about.

Vinod was a down to earth practical man, who knew his abilities and his place in the world. Everyone who ever worked with him would vouch for his openness to ideas and suggestions, his reputation as a lousy paymaster and a magnanimous human.

The reason India will miss Vinod Mehta is because he was the storyteller to an entire generation. Like a grandma to a kid, he whispered mysteries into the minds of people through his columns and they all will miss him very much.

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Microsoft Announces Indian Languages Support For e-mail Addresses

Microsoft's products will also support additional Indian languages as and when their IDNs and e-mail addresses become available in the future

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Microsoft Introduces 'Surface Hub 2' for Modern Workplaces
Microsoft Introduces 'Surface Hub 2' for Modern Workplaces. Wikimedia Commons
  • Microsoft announced support in Indian Languages for e-mail
  • There will be 15 Indian languages supported now
  • Indians will be able to use Microsoft in their local languages

Microsoft on Wednesday announced support for e-mail addresses in 15 Indian languages across its apps and services, including Office 365, Outlook 2016, Outlook.com, Exchange Online and Exchange Online Protection (EOP).

Microsoft introduces 15 new indian languages to its support.
Microsoft introduces 15 new Indian languages to its support.

Indian users would be able to use local language e-mail addresses for Outlook accounts on their personal computers, the company said on the occasion of the International Mother Language Day.

It would also allow users to seamlessly send/receive mails to/from local language e-mail addresses via Outlook client on PCs, Outlook.com in addition to Outlook apps for Android and IOS.

“Making e-mail addresses available in 15 languages is an exciting step to making modern communications and collaboration tools more accessible and easier to use for all,” Meetul Patel, COO, Microsoft India, said in a statement.

The Indian languages which will be supported include Hindi, Bengali, etc. Wikimedia Commons
The Indian languages which will be supported include Hindi, Bengali, etc. Wikimedia Commons

“We are making technology use the language of people and not requiring people to first learn the traditional language of technology,” Patel added.

The initiative is part of the company’s ongoing efforts to support Email Address Internationalisation (EAI) across its products and services eco-system and make technology accessible in local languages.

The languages being introduced are those that support Unicode — an international encoding standard for use with different languages and scripts.

Microsoft’s products will also support additional Indian languages as and when their IDNs and e-mail addresses become available in the future, making this feature forward compatible.

Microsoft launches 15 Indian languages in its support. VOA
Microsoft launches 15 Indian languages in its support. VOA

Last month, Microsoft announced the integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Deep Neural Networks (DNN) to improve real-time language translation for Hindi, Bengali and Tamil languages.

This technology would help users in getting results that are more accurate and natural while surfing the Internet across any website on the MS Edge browser, Bing search, Bing Translator website, as well as MS Office 365 products like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and Skype. IANS