Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Latest from Waseem Barelvi

It has been a while since we had some Shayari on this blog. So who better to feature here again than the legendary Prof. Waseem Barelvi. What follows is one of his recent Ghazals I guess. [I do not have to remind the seasoned readers of this blog that my translations are not to be taken very seriously and if it has been a while, you may want to remind yourself what I (& by extension, you should) think about them by reading the relevant tab above.]

आँखों आँखों रहे और कोई घर न हो
ख्वाब जैसा किसी का मुकद्दर न हो

Aankhon aankhon rahe aur koi ghar na ho
Khwaab jaisa kisi ka mukaddar na ho

Staying eye to eye and no house
Let no one’s fate be like dreams

क्या तमन्ना है रोशन तो सब हो मगर
कोई मेरे चरागों से बढ़कर न हो

Kya tamanna hai roshan to sab ho magar
Koi mere charaagon se badhkar na ho

What a wish to illuminate all but
Let no one be better than my lamps

रोशनी है तो किस काम की रोशनी
आँख के पास जब कोई मंज़र न हो

Roshani hai to kis kaam ki roshani
Aankh ke paas jab koi manzar na ho

There is light but what is light worth
When there’s no view before the eyes

क्या अजब आरज़ू घर के बुढ़ों की है
शाम हो तो कोई घर से बाहर न हो

Kya ajab aarzoo ghar ke budhon ki hai
Shaam ho to koi ghar se baahar na ho

What a weird desire of the home’s elders
Come evening and no one be outside homes

जिस को कमतर समझते रहे हो, ‘वसीम’
मिलके देखो कहीं तुमसे बेहतर न हो!

Jis ko kamtar samajhte rahe ho, ‘Waseem’
Milke dekho kahin tumse behtar na ho!

They have been believed to be lesser, ‘Waseem’
Meet and see, they may be better than you lots!

That’s all for this Ghazal and here is Prof. Waseem Barelvi reciting it himself:

Prof. Waseem Barelvi at 4th Deccan Literature Festival 2023

He recited a lot more obviously in this 2023 gathering. That full video along with more videos of other poets who recited there can be found on

This Channel!

Wednesday, May 8, 2024

AcBook 9.0

Finally, the most-awaited migration from GUIDE to AppDesigner has occurred. That of my beloved program: AcBook... and as expected, the new version is numbered 9. This latest version of AcBook could have been easily numbered 10, just like Windows 10 came after Windows 8(.1) by completely skipping 9. The reason that could have happened is because this new AcBook is completely redesigned from the ground up (as Microsoft is so fond of saying for almost everything every couple of months) in AppDesigner with only bare bones of GUIDE code surviving the transition. The reason that did not happen is because I like (even love, if that’s possible) the number 9 and there’s no way I would have skipped it.

We start at the start screen, of course. The Menubar and Toolbar have been stripped down with only “essential” items being in these two places. The toolbar duplicates the File menu, more or less. Below these is a collection of tabs. The first tab is obviously the Home (🏡) tab. It contains the welcome area with sign in buttons and load/save button. Below this fun area are three sections where you can enter transactions, view/edit recent transactions, and get an overview of your transactions via 5 (or less, if you want) “widgets”.

Home Tab

The second tab is the Transactions (💳) tab. This tab allows you to view all your transactions. You can do all sorts of actions on your transactions here: edit, filter, delete, search, sort, etc.

Transactions Tab

The third tab is the Accounts (📚) tab. This tab shows you information about all the existing accounts as well as an overview of the transaction data in those accounts. In addition, you can create accounts here as well as perform actions on them: edit, merge, remove & reorder. I am proud of implementing the last action in the way that I have done it, because MATLAB does not have a straightforward way to reorder rows of a table!

Accounts Tab

The fourth tab is the Groups (📑) tab. This tab shows you information about all the existing groups as well as an overview of the transaction data in those groups. In addition, you can create groups here as well as perform actions on them: edit, merge & remove.

Groups Tab

The fifth tab is the Budgets (💰) tab. This tab lets you create multiple budgets and see their details right there. In addition, this tab harbors the currency converter (which used to be a part of the start screen in previous versions) and explicitly shows the exchange rates for various currencies.

Budgets Tab

The sixth tab is the Charts (📊) tab, which allows you to visualize your transaction data in various ways. This tab has changed a bit from the previous versions with some new charts for certain options, new behaviour for certain combination of options, and an explicit transaction data table present which shows the transactions used to plot the charts!

Charts Tab

The seventh tab is the Settings (⚙️) tab, which is itself split into two tabs. Its first tab contains global settings for the user of the program (🧑‍💻). Sadly, the widgets settings do not all work in this version. In fact, only the “Show Widget” setting is currently implemented and working well. Other widgets settings will be completed in the next version (hopefully) because some more work on the structure of the file data (as it is stored & manipulated in the background) itself needs to be done for these settings to work properly or even be properly implemented! For the first time in two decades, I have implemented the “auto-save” feature against my own wishes and I like it. I even got used to it for a few weeks but then debugging errors (unrelated to this setting!) with this option checked is not a good idea, so I’ve turned it off for myself for the time being.


Its second tab contains local settings for the currently open file (🗄️). This tab is self-explanatory but let me know if you think I have missed some settings that should be included here (or the previous tab for that matter!).


Well, that more or less wraps up the changelog post for this version. But before I end with the link to the installer, I want to introduce you to a “similar” app: Cashew (available on Android and Desktop as a webapp). It is a well-made app with a gorgeous UI, intuitive workflow, truckloads of useful features (even has some version of ExpenSplit in it!) and frequent updates dealing with bugs, enhancements and improvements. It feels pleasant to use and works smoothly. I know that none of my readers will ever use AcBook (because there is huge potential well to even install it and it is available only on Windows 11) but I urge you to give Cashew a try at least for a week. I am pretty sure it will redefine for you what an app should be like. I am even willing to say that a couple of years back when I dabbled into Xamarin to make an AcBook app, I had a vision which was similar to what Cashew is. But I had neither the expertise (in other words, familiarity with the “app paradigm”) nor the patience to see it through. Anyway, enough with praising Cashew, let me praise its lead developer now. James (from Canada) replied promptly and politely to my emails about bugs in his app and fixed them on priority (it seemed so to me). He even took one of my enhancement requests in the same spirit and implemented it in the next day’s update! So a great person and a great app… what’s stopping you to use it!

Finally, let us get back to AcBook. The webpage from where you can download the installer follows.

AcBook Page