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[She couldn’t switch a computer on two years ago. Now singer Anaida doesn’t want to switch it off]

   Vivek Fernandes

The name is:

Claim to fame:
Six albums since I first hit the Indian music scene in 1995. My recently released Greatest Hits compilation featuring past hits like ‘Hotline’, ‘Oova Oova’ and the current ‘Piya Bina’.

How Net-savvy are you?:
I couldn't even switch a computer on two years ago, but I'm pretty adept now. I have had at least 50 people teaching me, from my assistant to friends online. If you asked me to rate myself I'd say 1 on 10 because technology is changing so quickly. Though I do know a lot, my knowledge gets dated by the minute.

How often do you surf?:
I have sometimes stayed up all night surfing and chatting. I suppose I could be a Net addict. I have to ration the time I spend online now, thought it's still at least an hour daily. Luckily, my mobile isn't WAP-enabled or I’m afraid I'd surf all day then.

What do you do online?:
My family doesn't reside in India and, though I use the telephone to correspond, I use the Internet to keep in touch. I also chat a lot with buddies I had lost track of. It feels like they’re next door now. I used voice mail when the services were free, and also play backgammon and chess online.

My own Web site Anaida.com was created so it would be easier for people abroad who wanted to work with me to communicate. However, when fans began to use it to keep in touch, it became more exciting. I have a fan club at Yahoo!, and try responding to all the fan email I receive. Strangely, I find it easier to connect to people when I'm online. I can judge them better in a chat room than in real life. It's a little weird having to introduce yourself as a pop star online, so I usually say I'm a singer, musician or writer.

What Web sites do you frequently visit?:
I really like reading online so I do visit lifeminders often. I also do a lot of stuff at Yahoo!

Whom would you like to chat with online?:
Hitler would be my first choice, because I’d like to know what got his demented mind working. I also would like to chat with Prince, the musician, and work with him someday. Or Kevin Costner, who comes across as a very intelligent person onscreen.

Your strangest experience online:
I once logged on under an assumed name and met someone in the same chat room claiming to be me. It was weird but I played along. He or she kept replying to queries most eloquently, narrating various experiences of my life. I thought I had an alter ego or something! Thankfully, this person had some intelligence so I was pleased that he or she wasn't an embarrassment to me. Other than that, it's been fun. I've met stranger weirdos in real life.

Recently in Celebrity Surfing:

-- I am getting married online: Nethra Raghuraman
-- 'I still get junk mail' - Sabeer Bhatia
-- 'I am terrified of the PC' - Manoj Bajpai
-- Subhash Ghai steps behind a webcam!
-- Arjun Rampal on chatting and the Internet
-- Saif Ali Khan on movies and shopping online
-- Shekhar Suman discovers the Net's hidden wonders
-- Pooja Batra on pornography, shopping and visiting Hollywood online
-- Tusshar Kapoor finds an old crush online
-- Mehnaz: Tuned In!
-- Rinke Khanna Ko Kucch Kehna Hai

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