Macedonia – first Wi-Fi country

I came across an ad today which mentioned that Macedonia is the first country in the world to have country-wide Wi-Fi network coverage. I was amazed and I searched a bit and found out that this is indeed the case. The coverage was possible due to a project called “Macedonia Connects” which was funded by the USAID.
Macedonia has a total area of 25,333 square kilometers – similar to the size of my home state Manipur i.e. roughly 0.8% of the size of India or 0.3% of the size of the U.S.
Macedonia map - click to enlarge (320 kb).
Image Courtesy: David Liuzzo/Wikipedia
Sometime back, I remembered reading something about Philadelphia going to be the first Wi-Fi enabled city in the U.S. But I am not sure if the project has been fully implemented yet. Currently, Corpus Christi, TX seems to be the only U.S. city which has full Wi-Fi access. Please correct me if I am wrong. Also, c|net has a list of municipal broadband network projects in the US.
Related Links:
Official Macedonian Govt. website
Wi-Fi Planet article (12/22/2006)
Financial Times article (3/28/2006)
BBC article (11/11/2005)
Macedonia – Wikipedia

Bird Nests – a highly expensive Chinese delicacy

I first came across these in a Chinese store in Chicago China town a couple of weeks back. And I was awe-struck. It seems that the bird nests of a certain type of swift bird are used as a delicacy in Chinese cuisine. These nests are made from the bird’s saliva and in addition to being a delicacy, they have medicinal properties also.
Swiflet Bird Nests - Courtesy: Wikipedia - click to enlarge (213 kb).
Image Courtesy: Wikipedia
These nests are extremely expensive – mostly due to the lengthy and hard process of getting the nests from unreachable rock crevices and also for cleaning them. The ones I saw in the Chinese store ranged from $800 to $1,500 per box (You can see the $888.99 price on the orange star shaped paper on the right of the box in the image below. Click the image to enlarge it). And these can go upto $10,000!
Box of bird nests - $899.99 at a chinese store in Chicago Chinatown - click to enlarge (593 kb).
I have not tasted the bird nests soup yet, but if I do, I will surely update this post :).
Wikipedia article about the bird nests

Restoring .eml files to open with Outlook Express

I had installed Windows Live Mail Desktop and it took over my .eml files. To make the .eml files open with Outlook Express (my original setting), I chose the “Open With” option and chose Outlook Express. However, whenever I clicked the .eml files, Outlook Express was launched (or the window became active if it was already open), but the message itself was not opening. I finally fixed the problem by using the following steps:
1. My Computer > Tools > Folder Options > File Types
2. Registered File Types > EML
3. Click on “Restore” button
A detailed explanation of the solution is at:
Microsoft KB 312355 – OLEXP: Unable to Open EML File Attachments in Outlook Express
I used the second option given on the page above, but changed steps 4,5,6 to step 3 above. Also, the “msimn /reg” option (i.e. the first option) did not work for me.