As Hurricane Sandy makes its way up the Eastern Seaboard, many are without electricity. Without power you could lose your access to Internet via Wi-Fi and, potentially, access to mobile networks. If that happens, how can you still post on Facebook and Twitter to let your friends and family know that everything is fine? Or ask for help?
You can use good-old text messages.
To tweet, first you need to enable your mobile phone on Twitter.com, so do it now while you can. Go to your Twitter homepage, then to “Settings” and then “Mobile.” Insert your cellphone number under “Activate Twitter text messaging,” and then you’ll have to text “GO” to the number 40404.
Once you’ve done that, you should receive a text message telling you that your phone is now activated. You should also see new settings on the webpage that allow you to enable or disable text notifications.
Now, to tweet, just write a text and send it to 40404.
To find out more about how to use other Twitter functionalities without an Internet connection, check Twitter’s official guide.
If you’re more of a Facebook fan, worry not. You can update your status via SMS as well and the social network also gives you the ability to subscribe to your friends’ updates and even use Facebook chat. Again, to access these functionalities, you first need to link your mobile phone to your Facebook account.
Log into Facebook.com and go to your “Account Settings,” which you can find under the arrow next to your name on the top bar. Then go to “Mobile,” introduce your number and click on “Activate Text Messaging.” You’ll have to select your country and your carrier. Once you’ve done that, follow the instructions on the screen and text the letter “F” to the number 32665.
Finally, you will receive a confirmation number on your phone. Insert that number on the page. You should then receive a text message that will confirm that your phone is activated.
Now, to update your status, you simply have to write it in a text and send it to 32665.
Young android developers breaking internet siege
Two young android developers Naveed Malik and Hanan Muzaffer are aiming high to counter the speculations of ban on social media sites by the government.
In an advent of such ban, users in Kashmir valley will look for alternatives.
The duo has developed a WhatsApp-like chat messenger ‘KashmirChat’ to cater the influx of users to lesser-known applications on the internet.
KashmirChat messenger, a cross-platform instant messaging application, allows android phone users to exchange text, image, video and audio messages for free.
The application was published on Google Play Store by two 16-year-old students, Naveed Malik of Lal Bazar and Hanan Muzaffer of Ellahi Bagh, Srinagar.
The duo studies at Government Higher Secondary School, Soura.
“We developed this application because of the speculations that social networking sites will be blocked,” Naveed Malik said. “This app has been created to provide an alternative to the people.”
He said their families had been supportive of their passion but at the same time they were skeptical of their future as Kashmir does not boast of any big software companies.
KashmirChat application is powered by legal drug finder on Google Play Store and has a 5 star rating with more than 500 active users on android devices.
A key reason for users to switch to this indigenous developed application is that the messages are secured with end-to-end privacy encryption safeguarding the privacy of its users.
The developers claim users can send unlimited messages, emojis, images, videos, audio, and files without being hacked or any sort of privacy violations.
“We had great response from people and about more than 2000 users are active on our app,” Hanan Muzaffer said. “. KashmirChat App has gone viral at our school and is widely shared among students.”
The app uses self-destructive message feature, countering the potential surveillance threat by hackers and adding privacy to chats on the application.
Another young developer, Usman Tareen, 16, the founder of Legal Drug Finder, and a student of Burn Hall School has helped the duo with the designing of the application.
“When they discussed the idea with me, I advised them how they could work on making the application better and promised them all possible help,” Tareen said.
A user Anzar Shah wrote on KashmirChat Facebook page “Kashmiri youth do not lack in any field and there is abundance of talent but unfortunately no steps are taken to chisel it into something big.”