A motley assortment of interesting (?) things

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

EverWonder? #8

EverWonder™ why when traffic is moving the slowest, they call it the Rush Hour?

I was sitting for two hours in completely stopped traffic this morning! One hell of a Rush hour. Thankfully it was raining and cool and I had my iPod :)

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Ragging

As the new academic year commences, thousands of freshers enter colleges with dreams of a carefree life, a life stripped of uniforms and rules. For most of us, our college years are synonymous with the best days of our life, but for some, the picture is not quite as rosy. Each year, the newspapers are overflowing with reports of ragging instances in educational institutions; some of them stretched to the extremes of the victims going into depression or worse, committing suicide. Ragging is a very strong psychological phenomenon which grips both the victim and the perpetrator; and the perpetrators in these cases are mostly everyday students—some of them even belonging to the ‘cream of the class’ category. Then, what is it that prompts a regular student to humiliate another, in the name of ‘breaking ice’?

Ragging Scene in India
In the land of Gandhi and gadhigiri, ragging has been misconstrued like nothing else. Forbearance must come with forgiveness, not out of helplessness. Ragging has long been a part of our culture, the rulers ragging the subjects, the zamindars ragging the peasants, the British ragging the Indians, the ‘upper-caste’ ragging the ‘lower-caste’; the instances are innumerable. It’s exactly this culture that has made its way into our educational institutions and translated itself into heinous crimes that bullies posed as students commit towards their fellow students. When the entire country is fighting for reservations and quotas for the backward class, if a bunch of ‘upper-caste’ medical students at AIIMS get together and say “Yeh chamar log kya karenge”, then it’s not too difficult to see where the perpetrators come from.

Instances
One major problem with ragging is that there is a very fine line that separates harmless teasing that might lead to ‘breaking the ice’, to brutal orders that scar the victim, emotionally and sometimes physically. Ragging tasks can range from proposing marriage to a senior girl you’ve met for the first time, to abusing strangers on the road, making love to a tree, describing your parents copulating, stripping in front of a group of people, and even carrying imprints of your private parts as identity proofs.

The Supreme Court passed an order in May 2001, banning ragging of all kinds, in educational institutions and instructed hat all institutions (no exceptions) should have an anti-ragging squad to protect the interests of students. But, even after the law, India has been witness to 20 reported deaths, due to ragging; mostly suicides, but some were alleged murders. Of course there are others who go unreported for various reasons, those who live in lifelong suffering, and those who are forced to pull out of their dream course or dream college due to the same fear. Suicide is the ultimate escape mechanism, according to Rohit Kaler. Kaler, of stopragging.com, an NGO that runs a strong anti-ragging campaign, recalls his days as an engineering student at the Kumaon Engineering College (KEC), where he spent the first few months of his college life. Kaler talks of students whose parents tell them that ragging is something that happens to every student and running away is not the way to deal with it. Kaler recalls an incident where a student called up his parents and begged for permission to come back home. “I can’t tell you what I’m going through,” he said, and his parents didn’t understand that he was undergoing sexual abuse. They asked him to put up with it and not be a sissy. The student committed suicide soon after.

A landmark case in the ragging history of the country was of Amit Kumar, a first year student at Jalandhar-based B R Ambedkar National Institute of Technology (NIT), who committed suicide by throwing himself in front of a train, but not before leaving a suicide note naming ten of his seniors responsible for his death. After going through immense physical and mental torture himself, Kaler dropped out of KEC, appeared for the IIT-JEE and got through IIT Kanpur. But the pain is still fresh as he chooses the anti-ragging campaign over the cushy IITian route to big bucks.

Psychology of a perpetrator and a victim
Ragging is closely linked with masculinity. “Ragging nahi hogi to mard kaise banoge,” seems to be a constant refrain among many people, some of which even include parents. So the idea behind ragging is to make you a ‘man’, ready to take on the world, once you’re out of college. And in women’s colleges, the ‘noble’ intention is to prepare you for a male-dominated world. “We are oppressing you because you will be oppressed by men anyway” is the underlying philosophy.

In fact there have been incidents when the accused were brought in front of the principal and the authorities were shocked to find that the perpetrators were some of the best students they had. So, what prompts them to dive to such depths? Seniors get ‘power kicks’ from making slaves out of their juniors—the sense of power at 19-20 when you have a person completely at you beck and call, can sometimes destroy your rationale.
Freshers, who are only too eager to please their seniors, make friends and fit into their new surroundings, stop rationalising and mindlessly obey the bullies. And then it gets to a point where it’s too late to back out, and things go out of hand. No one can really decide what kind of ragging is harmless and when it really crosses the line, which is why anti-ragging campaigns are against all kinds, even the ones that might sound like fun.

Many victims even shy away from sharing their experiences with people, or reporting ragging incidents to police, sometimes even in extreme cases. Complaining is usually the last option. The public opinion turns against you. If you rat on someone, you’ve turned a whole batch of seniors against you, sometimes even your own batchmates desert you, you’re ostracised and stuck with the ‘snitch’ tag. It’s also believed that once the ragging session is over you become great friends with your seniors, and if you resist ragging, then effectively you’re coming in the way of a long-lasting friendship. Seniors also tell freshers that it is they who will be helping them through their college life with notes and any other form of support they might need, which makes the freshers a little apprehensive about antagonizing them.

Sociological evil
Some people feel that ragging is more a social evil than a crime and that it’s necessary to spread awareness about ragging to curb it. Ragging victims are often picked at based on caste, religion and regional differences. It so happens that the victims who survive ragging sessions without going to extreme steps like dropping out or taking their lives, often become immune, so much so that they become part of the same system. Victims become perpetrators. Victims are often told that college ragging prepares them for the outside world and the harassment at workplace but any experienced person would know that no such ragging incidents take place in work spaces.

Laws Governing Ragging
Funnily enough, the anti-ragging laws are very strict in our country. Maybe they’re not implemented for the same reasons. For example, if a senior calls you to his room and locks the door, it’s a criminal offence. Wrongful confinement alone is punishable upto three months in jail; and then there are obscenity laws. In fact every form of ragging is covered under the IPC, but the May 2001 order states that any instance of ragging must be solved by the college authorities and that police can intervene only with the permission of the college authorities. The Supreme Court also appointed a committee to curb this ongoing menace. The committee headed by R K Raghavan, former Director, CBI, put forth many suggestions, one of them being that in a case of ragging, the onus should be on the defendant to prove his innocence instead of the victim. The 2007 Supreme Court order has overruled this suggestion. Though there are strict anti-ragging laws in about 9-10 states, the menace is still as prevalent as it was earlier. Tamilnadu, one of the badly affected states, was the first to ban ragging on its campuses, and has successfully managed to curb it to a great extent.

Judgements so far and the authorities’ attitude towards ragging complaints
Though there have been many arrests and suspensions, ragging victims are still bereft of justice. This may also be due to the callous attitude of the authorities. Most people seem to think that ragging is the done thing in colleges and you are a sissy if you can’t live with it. It doesn’t really help matters that out of every fifty people who are ragged only one or two go to detectable extremes. These people are usually termed ‘depressed’ and academically weak and unable to cope with the pressures of college life. Very little investigation goes into their deaths because the college authorities also like to keep it hushed.

Cure
Ragging takes place because boys and girls are experiencing bodily changes and grappling with growing up pressures. One of the reasons cited for ragging is the boys and girls exclusion in most hostels. Two institutions which have managed to rein in ragging to the greatest extent are IIT Kanpur (IIT-K) and Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU); and this could primarily be because girls and boys are allowed to mingle freely. Another mechanism deployed by IIT-K is the counsellor system that’s adopted in a lot of western countries. Every academic year, a committee of counsellors, consisting of students, is constituted and put in charge of guiding the freshers. Each fresher is assigned to a counsellor who becomes your friend/ philosopher and guide. Many believe that the bond resulting from this counsellor system is sometimes deeper than the one supposed to result out of ragging sessions. Spreading awareness about ragging and its ill effects could also go a long way in bringing about an attitudinal change in the minds of students and authorities. Only if we, as a society, look down upon ragging, will we ever be able to curb this menace.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Walmart-ville

Even as thousands of protesters pour out on the streets of Mumbai protesting against Walmart and Walmart-esque stores across India, Goodmagazine has this very interesting InfoGraphic on how widespread and large Walmart stores really are.


It turns out, Manhattan is a tad bit smaller than all the Walmarts put together.

This brings us to a bigger question: Walmarts are going to wipe out small traders? Computers are going to wipe out accountants? Robots are going to wipe out Factory Workers? Are we to just go back to the stone age so everybody can wield a club and go hunting?

Aren't the store chains going to provide hundreds of thousands of new (and higher paying) jobs in production, supply chain and outlet manning? I for one really support these mega-stores as it brings in convenience, so far available only in developed countries. But then again, I am an arm-chair theorist, these stores aren't going to hold back my next meal..

Friday, October 5, 2007

EverWonder? #7

EverWonder™ why there is no mouse-flavored cat food?

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Blip-Blip-Blip

50 years ago, on this day, an event took place that set in motion a sweeping change in every aspect of human existence. The 183 pound basketball sized Sputnik 1 was placed in orbit by pioneering Soviet scientists on Oct 4th 1957. Today we cannot imagine how life would be without the aid of the hundreds of artificial satellites enabling things we now take for granted: GPS, TV, Radio, Internet, weather prediction, Live Telecasts.

Kudos to the russian designers, engineers and technicians who really heralded the dawn of a new age!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Arrrrrrh!

A bit late I know, but september the 19th was the International talk like a Pirate day.



Aarrrrhh, Shiver me timbers!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Buzzword Mania

In my two years of living in corporate hell, I think I've come across atleast a dozen individuals who can speak for a couple of hours using nothing else but words and phrases from this list:

  • Back to the drawing board
  • Get our ducks in a row
  • Do the heavy lifting
  • Think outside the box
  • Value-Added
  • Sea Change
  • EOD
  • deliverable
  • actionable
  • metrics
  • synergy
  • core competencies
  • Built from the ground up
  • Drink the Kool-Aid
  • Level playing field
  • Steep learning curve
  • 800-pound gorilla
  • Lion's share
  • Low-hanging fruit
  • leveraging our assets
  • mission-critical
  • moving parts
  • client-focused
  • fudge factor
  • client-based
  • empower
  • peel the onion
  • ethical
  • mission statement
  • out of the loop
  • process
  • service organization
  • initiative
  • recognition
  • streamline
  • boil the ocean
  • globalize
  • exponential
  • high priority
  • dog and pony show
  • push the envelope

Why! oh Why can people not speak like normal human beings!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Skywards

| Olympus C4000 | F/3.2 | 8.2 mm | 1/1000 Sec | ISO100 | No Flash | Post Processing: Border |

Monday, September 10, 2007

Poooooolo


| Olympus C4000 | F/2.8 | 9.1 mm | 1/15 Sec | ISO200 | No Flash | Post Processing: Contrast, Crop, Text |

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Shell Out



| Olympus C4000 | F/2.8 | 19.1 mm | 1/160 Sec | ISO100 | No Flash | Post Processing: Contrast, Crop, Border, Text |


An out of the blue random trip to Pulicat lake, no plan, no objective, didn't even go to the bird sanctuary (was off-season), just a sand-bar, virgin beaches and lots of nice pictures. Wheeee.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Beautiful Drains

"Beautiful" is the last word that comes to mind when one mentions Sewers. Urban explorer Michael Cook's amazing work however has changed that perception for me.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

EverWonder? #6

EverWonder™ what they mean when they say "New and Improved" ? How can it be New if it is improved?

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Stripped

[At the Mall]
[Pointing at a shirt...]
Whaddya think?

Err...ok.

Hmm...I cant decide anything that fast...Would you believe if I say im still undecided as to what kinds i need to wear there to office?

[blankly]
Im not surprised!!!

Ahhh...i know...

[picks up a bright yellow shirt with red stripes and pocket flaps in the arms]
Hey, see this.

Awwww...My eyes!!!

[giggling]

Well, may be its time we start looking for wat we actually came here for.

Yep!

So how about this one?

Looks good. You should try them on. The fitting room is round the corner.

Yeah? You think so?

Ofcourse yea!

Then, maybe not!!!

Moron. Why do u ask me then?

Coz it tells me how horrible your taste is.

Yeah right! Stop your research right there...

[walking away...moving towards a manequin]
What would you say abt this?

what, the manequin? Primly dressed! But since when did you start ogling at male manequins?

Shuddup. I like what he wears and i want them.

You serious?

No kidding! Why? Can i not get those? Ofcourse I pay for it right?

May be we'll have to talk to one of those helpers.

[the helper walks in]
Sir, How may i help you?

Err...I like the shirt on the manequin. Do you have another set of the same?

Im sorry sir, thats the only piece we have in that shade.

Then, im gonna have to ask you for a favor. Can you remove that shirt from the manequin so i could try it on.

I'd be glad to, Sir.

[Whispering..]
What is it, some kinda gay parlor? You ask him to strip a guy and he says he'll be glad to...Gross

Shuddup. Its just a manequin.

But its still a guy.

Guess wat?

Wat?

You are gonna be famous.

Really? As what?

The guy who paid a 1000 bucks to see a guy strip. [Laughing wildly]

Yeah yeah. And that would make you famous as well.

Like How?

The one who stood by that guy and had a free show. Lucky You!!!

Yeow...

[Walking out of the store...]
Hey, Im hungry.

Pizza?

Buh...No. No Pizza No Burgers No Subs. Im tired of them.

Chinese?

Yeah...May be some chinese would do.

[while waiting for the order]
So when did you last visit UU blog.

been a while. Why?

Theres someone new there...Eskimo.

Eskimo???Crazy name!

Well it fits them.They all have crazy names.

Hehehehe...yeah.

By the way, the markets!!!

No we are not talking about that.

[Laughing]
Be a sport. Come on. What's your story? Bull or Bear?

I'd love to say Im atleast a bear. But in reality, im just simple plain jackass. Now how does that sound.

Terrible. Alright jackass, what do you want for dessert?

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Welcome Eskimo



I don't remember having looked up "Eskimo" on live search, but we do have an Eskimo in the house! Welcome aboard Eskimo, hope you help us mish and MASH some more :) Now how do you say Welcome in Inuktitut..

BTW I think it is time for some housekeeping and perhaps to give the boot to the non-contributors. Yes I'm looking at you Vivek and Wolverine :p

Droste effect

When I was younger, there used to be a breakfast talk show on Doordarshan. I don't remember what it was called, it has a man and a lady and in-between them on the set was a TV. I do recall being pretty excited about the concept of a TV within a TV. I wondered what would happen if the same program I was watching was on that TV too. There would be a TV within a TV within a TV within a TV within a TV..

Though I was too young at that point to understand Recursion or Fractals, when I recently came across the "Droste Effect" I was glad I wasn't alone in this madness :p

And there are others who've taken this much further

Just in case, at this point you are wondering how to make one yourself, a tutorial, and a gallery to boot.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Union Carbide




Here is an old print ad for Union Carbide, the company responsible for the Bhopal tragedy. The tag line goes "A Hand in things to come, Union Carbide". Creepy Indeed!

Taken from a list of other creepy old advertisements here. But this one struck me as downright scary. Is this the price we pay for progress?

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

EverWonder? #5

EverWonder™ If you go about trying to prove Murphy's Law, Will something go wrong?

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Harry Potter Leak, perp leaves digital trail

I've noted in an earlier post that the latest episode of Harry Potter has been leaked on the net 4 days prior to the official release date. The perpetrator has painstakingly photographed each of the 700 or so pages of the volume. Some pictures have bits of his/her hands, a table top and a carpet.

The legal team representing the publisher though are not taking things lying down. The crook might just have joined the hall of shame alongside dumb thieves who leave driver's licenses and other forms of identification at the scene of the crime. he/she didn't bother to strip the EXIF data from the photographs and that information might just lead the investigators to his/her doorstep, provided canon divulges the information on who owns the camera with the specific serial number!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Leaked!

** No Spoilers here **

Hermione dies though.
Hehe just kidding. I don't know the ending yet, and I don't want to know it before I read the book either. The book is scheduled for release on the 21st and right now millions of copies are sitting in thousands of warehouses and bookstores across the world.

In spite of warnings of dire consequences and pages and pages of legal threats there is bound to be a rotten apple somewhere.. and there is. Some dude went through the pains of actually photographing each page of the novel and uploaded it. Time to fire up that bit-torrent client maybe? Word has it that some pages are unclear, but that shouldn't stop the die hard fan.

I didn't preorder the book, thought the price was preposterous. Now I need to shield myself from the media till I actually read the book. There are evil people out there waiting to spoil the experience for me, like they did with "Sixth Sense". Or I gotta pay up now. Damn.

EDIT: I've noticed a lot of people ending up here looking for excerpts, so here the bit-torrent link

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

EverWonder? #4

EverWonder™ : Why a lift is called a lift, when it can also take you down?
"Oh I'm taking the drop to the ground floor"

Sunday, July 15, 2007

So...what is stopping you???


Ok. Listen. If someone's gonna be here looking for me, tell them Im not around.

Lie? "I" have to "Lie". That's so not possible!!!

Dei...Be nice, and do this once for me!!!

And, if I may ask, why exactly?

Err...Well, I was in this call with my parents....

Oh you were yelling at them all this while??? What son are you? Im so ashamed. I am friends with a guy who disrespects parents? Cha Cha...Too bad.

Watever...

Ok so watever happened???

So, they have this arrangement made. There is gonna be someone in a while to see me here. And that can never happen.

Huh!!! why is that so bad? You cant have guests in here???

Dumbo, the guy is the female's brother.

Well well well...Hohoho...Hoho.....

Now stop laughing and do as told.

You are getting married??? Heheheheh.... and who is this female???You've seen her? What is her name?

Ive no idea. And whatever happens, that man is not going to be here sipping coffee in our living room. You get that???

Sir, Aye Sir! Consider it done Sir!!!

pch...Poda

So, tell me this, what is stopping you?What are you afraid of???

Are you kidding? Its a Sunday today. The Day we have for ourselves. My parents want me to shave.

SIN

set the bed well

NEVER

broom the place

MY GOD

and bathe and get ready when he comes

WEDDING CANCELLED

OH YEAH!!!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

AAAAAAA!

AAAAAAAAAAAA

EverWonder? #3

EverWonder™ : Why is it when two planes almost hit each other it is called a near miss? Shouldn't it rather be called a near hit?

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Here I am!!!




A picture post in a long time. Somehow feel all my time is being robbed by people who are unimportant in MY life. And that explains why the blog has been clean and not littered with my writing...;)...Again this is something that I had done sometime back and isnt fresh here...I shall try and come up with something interesting soon...:D...

Friday, July 6, 2007

Swarm

Have you ever watched a bunch of ants trying to carry a rather big piece of food? some ants are pulling in opposite directions, sometimes one ant gets on top of the crumb being carried. Individually each of these ants seems an Idiot, but together they achieve their goal. Swarm Intelligence.

Studying Swarm Intelligence had special significance in Robotics, If you've read Michael Crichton's Prey, you know what I am talking about. Nat Geo has an interesting article on swarm behavior

"In the Arizona desert where Deborah Gordon studies red harvester ants (Pogonomyrmex barbatus), a colony calculates each morning how many workers to send out foraging for food. The number can change, depending on conditions. Have foragers recently discovered a bonanza of tasty seeds? More ants may be needed to haul the bounty home. Was the nest damaged by a storm last night? Additional maintenance workers may be held back to make repairs. An ant might be a nest worker one day, a trash collector the next. But how does a colony make such adjustments if no one's in charge?"


Link

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Animation Reuse?




Disney reuses it's animation? There is no denying that the artwork had been reused, but does it really reduce any work for the animators? *wonders..

Smart Revengeful Woman



Hahaha pwned!

Monday, June 25, 2007

The lines just dont end!


Ed Burtynsky's amazing photo-series on China's manufacturing houses. Must see!

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Big Phone, Small Phone

Still on the topic of the iPhone, there is no question that this phone is quite large, wide too. I for one wouldn't be too comfortable slipping it into my jeans' pocket.



While competing phones are getting razor thin, ala Razr, Slvr etc. With not enough time to go back to the drawing board, apple decides to use forced perspective and comes up with a innovative solution: While shooting ads, use a model with bigger hands!



Voila!


side-by-side for your viewing convenience:



Story "borrowed" from l-rs

Saturday, June 23, 2007

No problem, I got an iPhone

getting tired of all the hype around the iPhone? Here's Conan's hillarious take on what the iPhone will be.



Sideburns! hahaha

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Spaghetti Junction

Take the next right turn hun.

ok.

(dum dee dum dee dee dum...)

You just went past it! Do you have any idea what that means?

We take the next right turn?

No you Idiot, you spend the next two hours staring at this picture figuring out if there is even a way to go back. Men!

---

more travelly groovy curvy goodness here

Peas of Mind

A poor farmer grew peas and beans on his farm. At harvest time he gathers the peas and beans, but being poor, he has only one sack to take to the market. Not wanting to mix them, he pours the peas into the sack, ties it up and then pours the beans in.

In the market he meets a trader who wants to buy the peas. The trader has a sack too, in which he wants to carry away the peas but is not willing to trade his sack with the farmer's. Neither the farmer or the trader want to devalue the peas or the beans by pouring them out on the ground.

You chance along these individuals in the market, can you help the farmer make the sale?

(No you are not interested in purchasing the beans :p)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Get pwned on voice

Clive Thompson writes:

"Recently I logged into World of Warcraft and I wound up questing alongside a mage and two dwarf warriors. I was the lowest-level newbie in the group, and the mage was the de-facto leader. He coached me on the details of each new quest, took the point position in dangerous fights and suggested tactics. He seemed like your classic virtual-world group leader: Confident, bold and streetsmart.

But after a few hours he said he was getting tired of using text chat -- and asked me to switch over to Ventrilo, an app that lets gamers chat using microphones and voice. I downloaded Ventrilo, logged in, dialed him up and ...

... realized he was an 11-year-old boy..."


Hilarious!

That test results meant nothing?

Al Feldzamen takes a mathematicians view of how multiple choice tests work. Especially difficult ones. Turns out the harder a multiple choice exam, the lesser the accuracy of the ranking made from just counting only the correct answers!

Some of the math on that page is wrong, as pointed out in the comments on the same page, nevertheless the main argument still holds. Hmm.. SATs, GRE, GMAT, Engineering entrance exams here, Bar exams in the US..

Negative marking for wrong answers improves the accuracy a bit, but here is a very interesting scheme reported by a slashdot reader that seems to solve the problem:

Two boxes next to the answer space ask the test taker how confident (s)he is of the answer, and the scoring scheme goes:

If you ticked "confident" and you were wrong, -2
If you ticked "confident and you were right, +2
If you ticked "unsure" and you were wrong, -0
If you ticked "unsure" and you were right, +1

mighty interesting, If I ever get around to teaching a class, I might inflict this on some poor souls out there :p

Monday, June 18, 2007

Ferris


| Olympus C4000 | F/4 | 13 mm | 1 Sec | ISO100 | No Flash | Post Processing: Crop, Text |

No fair n lovely magic

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Smart Crash



The smart brand of cars, from the Mercedes stable, are going to be available in the US soon. They have been available in Europe for a while now, and have some sort of a cult following there.

The cars, especially the roadster and the roadster coupe look interesting. But the touted features.. 40 miles per gallon? thats just 17km to the liter of diesel, I reckon the Ford Fiesta diesel does about as good if not better. the price at 14000 Pounds is almost 11 lakhs INR, again twice as much as the Fiesta. The Fiesta is a mid sized sedan with four doors, the tiny smart fourtwo, has just two doors, no boot and hardly any crumple zones. For it's size, I would have expected a phenomenal mileage atleast! They are however known to have deceptively large cabin space though, as depicted in this rather interesting ad.

As for the expected 1-lakh Tata small car, I wish it atleast looks as good as the smart.

Friday, June 15, 2007

"Sivaji - The Boss" - Review

Sivaji - The Boss

At the outset, this was probably the most publicity any movie has received yet. What with NDTV telling this was the biggest movie ever, and economic times giving the analysis of profits and a comparison of all of Shankar's movies. Suffices to say that my expectations were really high. I approached for the tickets on the 13th expecting to be able to see the movie on Sunday only. Surprisingly, I go tickets for the coveted first-day-first-show; that too on the second row from the back. Yippeee!!! I woohoo-ed and danced a jig outside the ticket station. The general public rushed to call the asylum, fearing the worst.

On the day of the movie (today 4 hours before right now), the line outside the ticket stands was a mile-long. The theater was packed. Although the intro scene was more mellow than I expected, it had all of us out of our seats screaming and whistling. Apart from a few scenes, the audience was quiet and listened to every line of the movie.

The first half of the movie was a real drag, with comedy scenes being the only reprieve. The first half ends with a lot of expectation. And shankar delivers in the second half. So does Rajini. It is hard to believe that the guy is a grandfather. He dons his "thambikku entha ooru" look in the first half and the "baasha" look in the second half - well, at least most of the second half.

The worst thing in the movie is without a doubt, Shreya. She comes fully clothed in all the scenes and scantily clothed in the song sequences. She desperately tries to display some form of emotion in a couple of scenes, but falls on her face. The second worse thing would have to be the screenplay. They will have to know when to put in songs. Songs creeping up throughout the time in the movie results in the screenplay taking a severe beating and slows down the pace of the movie (the all important pace of any rajni movie) to a crawl.

All in all, the movie is definitely above average - much better than Baba, but nowhere near baasha, arunachalam, padayappa, etc. It has all the key elements - a villain, a cause, concerned parents, bumbling love interest and a comedian. As can be expected from a shankar movie, the songs and fight sequences were a bit over dramatic.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Not coffee break, Car break!!!

So...what vehicle was it?

err...its a van carrying provisions, sir!

Van, huh?

Err...Ya, you could call it a van

What is it exactly?

It looked more like a van carrying provisions!!!

Was it a milk van???

Could have carried milk also. Possible!

Or is it a truck?

A truck???What is your idea of a truck?

A truck is anything that could possibly be a truck.

Am sorry sir, i dint get that!

Me neither. But thats not important. Was it a truck?

Sir i have the number of the vehicle.

I asked you if that was a truck!!!

I totally understand...but...

You understand and you follow it up with that response??? I need to make a note of this.

Sir sir sir...

Ya go on what else?

[Very earnestly]
Sir, could you please let me know What did you make a note of?

Oh that, i just took note of your negligent behaviour.

My negligence???Sir, i dint mean it that way.

If you werent, you would have answered my question. may be that is why this accident in the first place.

What is why?

Your negligence!!!

[slightly louder]
No way. Sir, i was indeed concentrating hard.

Hmm...ok.May be this also.

Also???What also?!?

Patience!!!Otherwise you wouldnt be shouting. You lost patience and so you ended up hitting that truck slash lorry slash van in front of you.

Sir please, it was his fault. The tempo braked all of a sudden in the middle of the road and i had to crash into his rear.

Tempo???

Ya the van!

so... not the truck?!?

Sir, is this really important now?

You dont tell me what is important. Im the sergeant here. And i dictate rules. Now tell me, What is the vehicle number?

Err...

the number!

TN Zero seven...

TN?

Ya Zero...

Zero

Seven

seven

A

A

Zee

C

pch...Zed

Three characters???

No. Not C. Zed.

Oh Zee, then?

[Deiiiiiiiiiiiii, sottai thala]
3427

Three wat?

[Crying inside]
foooouuurrr tttwwwwoooo seven

Why dont you jus say 3427? Ok do you have a driving license?

[3427 is just four digits. This has some 16 numbers....:((((((((((((( ]

And the argument continues....

Sunday, June 10, 2007

You made my night!!!

What do i write, What do i write about. I need to make a post. Come on there has to be something that was funny. My life isnt all that boring. Or is it? Is it really that boring.

Hah...Whaddya think?
You should win this years award.

For what?

For leading the most Miserable life on earth. Mwahahaha

Now who are you?

Who can i be? Look at the clock. Read the hands. The smaller stands slightly past 2 and the only light i see is from your laptop. So u judge who i am.

Oh no. Not you. Of all the people on earth. Not you. Go away.

Dont worry dude. You've got more company. im here.

Can you save my skin?

I can save that too.

That too? What else can you save?

Im not supposed to say that and you wouldnt wanna hear that. Im the angel.

Watever! Now y are you guys here, bugging me!

Oh we thought we would help you finish this post up.

Oh ya? And how? Got ideas???

Oh listen to this, you could write about this guy who filed a lawsuit against novartis 'cause the beverage he drank gave him an erection that wont subside.

Im not writing that. This is not a weirdo.com site.

Ya im with you on that. That is so gross.

Or about this hospital that puts up Brad and George Clooney's posters on the ceiling.

Huh why would they do that?

Help women relax during gynaecological checks.

where do u get these ideas from?

From you people!!!

Erection, Gynaecology...is all you got???Gimme something decent!

Decent...deeecent....hmmm...deee..cc..ee..ntttt....

thats right! D.E.C.E.N.T

Oh try this.

throw it!

Slightly older news that i read 5 months back. Is that ok?

ok...

That was the first time the Swedish Police station had ordered a batch of toilet paper in twenty years.

Wow!!!what else u've got, the guy who ate a tonne of potato and managed to never fart for a year????

Aaah!!! I never read that anywhere, but sounds interesting!

Now go away. You are not helping me. I ask you for one sensible thing that i can write about and you come up with all the possible weird things that can happen on earth. I dont want another thing from you. Go away.

Men dont appreciate quality stuff. No wonder they are mere mortals. Well then you've used up my stock, you might have to take only angel's help on this.

Oh then tell me what you want.

I want you guys to shut the fkcu up and leave me alone.

I think you are angry. You lose your temper so often so soon. May be you should get a counselling.

Dare me @#$%@#&&@&...Say another word and am gonna beeep beep beep beep...Im never gonna make a decent post with you guys around...so i better catch some sleep...thanks for making my night...

Monday, June 4, 2007

Buffalo

Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo



now before you think I've gone cuckoo, let me inform you that, That up there is a fully valid, completely meaningful English sentence; or so they tell me. Well I personally never had a chance to buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

More Pics

A couple of more pics from my Canon. The one below is of a fish of some kind. :P I'm no fish expert so ask me not what fish it is. The nice part is that the fish was moving quite fast when the picture was taken. This picture was also shot in an underwater world, where all the fish are swimming and the people walk in glass-walled tubes laid underwater. This pic was taken with no flash, 1/2500 shutter speed and F8.0 aperture. Cool huh?
The one below was shot in Sentosa in Singapore, during the laser/fountain show. The show was spectacular by the way. This was at the end of the show when there was a lot of waterwork and fireworks

New camera. Sample pic.

As some might already know, I was on a trip to some of the south-asian countries; Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore to be exact. I also bought a Canon Powershot A630. Not a bad piece of equipment at all. A sample pic is below. Its a scenery of the mountains taken from a moving bus during the return trip from Genting highlands (hill station near Kuala Lumpur)

Guess incessant picture-uploading by Mayaavi and Rage did rub off on me too. :P

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Holophonic sounds

Amazing stereo effect! You need headphones for this to work, listen to these clips.

Get your headphones, close your eyes, kick your feet up and hit play:

The Virtual Barbershop


Hair Dryer



Shhh..

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Light and Shadow

I took part in this worth1000 online photography competition. The theme was paper, the challenge was to shoot 1-3 pieces of white paper. period. Here's my entry:



I finished fourth. Not bad I guess :P
This wasn't my first entry there, but I didn't do as well earlier, so I'm not talking about those, Shhhh :p

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Purdah



Some people who got offended by the nudity of "The Little Mermaid" at the Copenhagen harbor decided to dress her up, burqa style.




Vandals!

Monday, May 21, 2007

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Trial rooms are cozy!

Hello...

Hello...Hey, Wats up?

Hey listen, Im here at the bank and will leave in 10 min and then would want to buy a few clothes before i head home.

Ok, so?

Wat so? I want you to come along.

[Me???Why me?]
Ok!Where are you gonna shop?

So you are not going with me?

mmmm, actually...
Im a little...

Stories! Stories!!! All the time!
You've never had time for me. NEVER
Your watch never ticks for me.
You have time for all your friends. Your Uncle, the two year old akka's daughter, the security at your apartment. But not for me. Fine am going. And you dont say a word.

....

....

...

Hello, Hello???You there?Say something!

But the order was to not say a word, right?

Smart, huh???Well, know that you are not smart,Ok?

Ok.

Ok???Is that wat you said. Did i jus hear you say "O" "K"?

[irritated and sighing]
Where are WE going? Tell me.

You dont have to force it on yourself.Thanks for being sweet. And am hanging up now

Stop. Listen. I thought i'll watch this match on TV...but when you wanna do this so important, i'll go with you. No Problem.

Really???

[Ofcourse not. But do i have a choice]
Hell Yea.Lets do this. I shall pick you up in 30 mins.

Love ya.

Too.Bye!

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[At the store]

Why is that every store places guys garments always on the top most floor?

Stop being silly.

Thats not silly. That is one genius of a question. Have you ever thought about this? For that matter, you think anyone here even thought about it?

Im definitely not gonna waste time answering that.


Dude, you are asking the wrong person. Ask me.

You? Who are you? The Voice.

Voice? What do you know? Do you have answers to my questions?

Oh i do.

Ya , so wats it?

The guys garments being placed on the topmost floor??? Thats a simple answer!

Really, why?

Guys garments are all boring. So boring. Very uninviting. On the other hand, look at them. Aahhh! They are so brilliant, flashy, sexy, gorgeous. Wouldnt you just stop by that window if you even see a doll dressed up like a bikini model.

Alrite thats it! You are just reading me like an open book. Scary Voice, Go away!!!

[After like 45 mins]

Hon...You done?

What do you mean done? Ive looked at only 3 dresses so far.

Its been almost an hour in this store already, and i've seen myself in almost all the mirrors here.

Come on dont be a crybaby!!!Now go ahead and count the black squares on the floor while i quickly go thru the pile here.

That is so mean. Not fair!!! I agreed to come along skippin the match. And this is all i get in return.

Alright Alright, Gimme 10 mins and i'll be done here.

[after an hour]

Excuse me. Did you see a tall guy, with a weird look on his face wandering like an unaccompanied minor here???

oh that bloke, i saw him walking into that trial room last.

Thank you!

[From inside the trial room]

geerrrr, GEERRRR, GERERRRR, GEEERERERERRER

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Curled


| Olympus C4000 | F/2.8 | 19.1 mm | 1/8 Sec | ISO200 | No Flash | Post Processing: Contrast, Color Balance, Border, Text |


Just a ordinary white sheet of paper, cut, rolled, and shot under an incandescent lamp.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

And a century it is...

100th blog people. time to rejoice. im on my way to a huge project meeting, where we are going to explain to our superiors why its a good thing we've spent all this time and gotten so delayed and achieved close to nothing. sigh!

Saturday, May 12, 2007

100th post, Yippeeeee!

And here are the Stats:
12th March to 12th May 2007
1251 Visits
635 Absolutely Unique Visitors
2995 Page views


Beat you to it cavey :p

Clutter

My desk is more often cluttered than not. Right from the stapler I last touched weeks ago to the email I printed ten seconds ago. It's never dirty, someone cleans for me once in a while but definitely cluttered. I organize once every while, but like pig-pen from Peanuts, it's a matter of minutes before the desk reaches it's normal stable state. I have heard somebody say:

"True personal clutter amounts to a chaotic system based on the mental patterns of the clutterer. There is a pattern in the chaos, but the initial state and the chaos function are in the mind of the creator, so while to any outside observer it just looks like a mess, to the creator it makes perfect sense."

While I cannot test or prove the veracity of that statement, I like to believe it as it tends to suggest that the creator is organized, so much so, that he/she can even make sense in chaos :p

My desktop is a sharp contrast to my desk though. I have a minimal set of icons on it and always use a minimalist wallpaper which enough clutter free areas that hold my Icons and they never interfere with each other. I am usually very picky about my wallpapers, and often end up editing what I find on the net to suit my style. Sometimes when I have the time and inclination, I also create my own, here is my current wallpaper that I have created.



If you'd like to get it on your screen too, try these: 1024x768 1280x1024

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Fireworks

| Olympus C4000 | F/2.8 | 19.1 mm | 1/800 Sec | ISO200 | No Flash | Post Processing: Contrast, Color Balance, Border, Text |

My first attempt at shooting fireworks in the dark, I wasn't expecting them and I didnt't have a tripod :(

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

EverWonder? #2

EverWonder™ : If you pull the wings off a fly, does it become a crawl?

Bots: Servants, Friends or Overlords?

Excerpts from an article about soldiers bonding with their Robots:


---
Every time it found a mine, blew it up and lost a limb, it picked itself up and readjusted to move forward on its remaining legs, continuing to clear a path through the minefield.

Finally it was down to one leg. Still, it pulled itself forward. Tilden was ecstatic. The machine was working splendidly.

The human in command of the exercise, however -- an Army colonel -- blew a fuse.

The colonel ordered the test stopped.

Why? asked Tilden. What's wrong?

The colonel just could not stand the pathos of watching the burned, scarred and crippled machine drag itself forward on its last leg.

This test, he charged, was inhumane.

---
Friendly keepers who, for example, award their bots "battlefield promotions" and "purple hearts." "Ours was called Sgt. Talon," says Sgt. Michael Maxson

---
"There wasn't a whole lot left of Scooby," Bogosh says. The biggest piece was its 3-by-3-by-4-inch head, containing its video camera. On the side had been painted "its battle list, its track record. This had been a really great robot."

The veteran explosives technician looming over Bogosh was visibly upset. He insisted he did not want a new robot. He wanted Scooby-Doo back.

---
"As he was struggling to bring the bot down without an engine, he could see "the ground coming real fast." He dropped the landing gear, flared the wings, pushed the stick forward and then started fumbling around at the bottom of his desk chair.

He had bonded so tightly with the machine hundreds of miles away that he was searching for the lever that would allow him to eject.
It's About the Humans"

---
Right now Avis is airing a 30-second spot that features a young man in a necktie having a conversation with the navigation bot in his rental car.

"Traffic ahead," the female voice says to him.

"Incredible!" he replies. "You found a golf course near the conference -- awesome Chinese. Now you find me a way around traffic."

He shakes his head and lifts his thumbs off the wheel in a gesture of emotional helplessness.

"I love you," he says with feeling.

The music swells:

Turn around / Every now and then I get a little bit lonely / And you're never coming 'round.

---
Read the full text here

Monday, May 7, 2007

News: The Media minces words!

Physorg writes up an article that reports : "We are considering taking legal action against the website," said Vissanu Meeyo, a spokesman for the information ministry.

and then titles it: "Thailand to sue YouTube over king clips"

Slashdot pick's up the article and titles it: "Thailand sues YouTube"


Slipping on the tiny word "to" does make a lot of difference!

The Real Photoshop

When I outgrew MS paint eons ago and wanted a tool that was a tad more powerful, I picked up the one that was within the easiest reach. That month's PC World magazine CD carried a trial version of Jasc Paint Shop Pro 3.0 and I started using it. Soon I heard about Photoshop but I was comfortable with PSP and felt no need to change.PSP used to have all the features of Photoshop but was significantly cheaper, and was often called the "poor man's Photoshop". As my skills improved and newer versions came out, I stuck with PSP right upto version 9.0

The the unthinkable happened. Corel acquired Jasc. Corel stopped projecting PSP as a Photoshop competitor and started tagetting non-pro users. The GUI became overly shiny and useless but the feature set started stagnating, bugs started creeping in. I stuck with Jasc's last version instead of moving to Corel's (which I think is now at 12.0)

But then the age of the software started showing, as Adobe came up with CS, CS2 and soon to be out CS3, I was stuck with an ancient piece of software. So I decided to make the jump.

So I got a copy of PS CS2. It is certainly cool. possibly even cooler. But my biggest gripe is that, having been used to a different tool, I struggle for hours even to find the simplest tools or figure out how to make them behave the way I want them to. I spent about 20 minutes figuring out how to select the background color using the ink-dropper tool..

(I think the biggest difference I found so far is that Adobe doesn't like the mouse so much, alternative uses of tools are not right-click but are usually ctrl-click or alt-click. Photoshop does not use the scroll wheel at all! PSP zooms in and out with the wheel and you can vary values using the wheel too. Photoshop leans more towards Keyboard shortcuts. Grr.. I can never remember them)

Well all in all, I've spent about a few hours making this image from scratch and I've had fun. So I must say Adobe, you've won a convert. Without much further ado, I present my first Photoshop creation :)

Friday, May 4, 2007

Spiderman 3

Yay!!! I saw Spiderman 3 on the first day. As can be expected from superhero fans such as myself, I am going to say the movie was spectacular. Even better than Spiderman 1. The graphics were spectacular to say the least. The battles are actually so complicated and there's so much carnage and web action that I think it will take a second viewing to absorb all the action. I dare say that the physics in all action sequences were perfect as far as I could judge it. The new crop of villains are quite good, but reminded me of other ground-breaking movies of the past. Sandman for instance, reminded me of T-1000 in terminator-2.

The movie is quite funny too. In two ways. Scenes intended to be funny and scenes that were just funny. Jonah Jameson (editor-in-chief of Daily Bugle) brings in a lot of humor (and it was intended to do so). But Peter Parker crying was meant to be emotional and sentimental, but did not come off that way. Lets just say, the guy is better off with his mask on. Surprisingly though, he did emote well between the good Peter and the evil Peter. A little bit of kajal in his eyes helped the evil look, but his general mannerisms were differently portrayed in both characters. Topher Grace has done a good job too, but for all fans of "That 70s Show", you will feel like, "Whats' Eric doing here?". Harry made for a good villain too.

Final verdict: Definitely worth watching once. If you are a fan of either Spiderman or good graphics or both, it's worth watching multiple times.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Google's "Do Evil" NDA

I was telling my friends about the scary NDA I had to sign at Google when I interviewed with them. I am violating the NDA, making this post!

The NDA expressly forbids me ever "imply or mention the name of Google" in public, I am not supposed to mention the interview ever, and I am required to deny the existence of this NDA.

Out there at valleywag Someone managed to steal the NDA though and posted it online.

And they best part is, I needn't have signed it and they would still have talked to me. See update 2 here.

I'm told similar NDA craziness exists at Amazon too.

Slump

Hmm.. our posting rate has come down significantly as we approach the 100 mark.. A classic case of Sachin syndrome methinks. We should be able to rev up once Mayaavi and I are able to get our necks above the work.

For those who didn't catch the significance of the poem post below, I promise, I will make another post throwing more light on why 09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0 are important.

Zero and her Origin

Zero, the number said to be discovered
Nine times by ancient magicians, was
Found again by a mysterious order of
Nine modern alchemists, who built
One machine after another, until finally
One exploded with fascinating results.
No fire emerged from its
Twin engines, but instead
Nine small automata crawled out,
Denying the proposition that energy,
Seven millenia or more in the accumulation,
For most purposes, remains
Ever constant, throughout the
Three ages of man's civilization.

Five hundred years after the death of Cesare
Borgia, whose image infected those of the
Divine Lamb (so called), still she who
Ate of the pomegranate seeds
For her indiscretion, must ever wend her
Solitary path amongst the
Five true worlds, stopping only for
Sex and occasional rending of garments.
Constant travel drains her.
Five worlds is too many for one lifetime, yet the
Sixth can never claim her.

Three wise men write, of the sefirot,
Five are false, and four are lies.
Tiferet alone among them holds the world's truth.
Eight lifetimes of study,
Eight generations of blind encoding,
Cannot release the final answer:
Zero defined by itself; no further emblems exist.

--Jeremy Bornstein

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Carnivorous Soft toys




Mochimochi Land's "Sleepy Snake eats Mischievous Mouse"
I love it!

Monday, April 30, 2007

Sunset

| Olympus C4000 | F/2.8 | 6.8 mm | 1/800 Sec | ISO100 | No Flash | Post Processing: Crop, Curves, Border, Text |


The sun sets over the Nagarjuna Sagar dam on the river Krishna.

Samma hot machi!

| Olympus C4000 | F/2.8 | 6.8 mm | 1/400 Sec | ISO100 | No Flash | Post Processing: Border, Text |

I always thought that tonnes of red chillies spread all over the ground was a sight one could only see in Rajasthan. The other day I was in Guntur, Andhra Pradesh and I was surprised to see this sight. There were also acres and acres of sprawling green chilly fields with red fruit, that looked quite delicious (Thankfully I knew better). The sun was too bright to get an Ideal picture, but I couldn't wait nor come back later..

Sunday, April 29, 2007

How I Feel?

Good day Sir!How may I help you?

Uhh, well....lets see what I can have...

Yes Sir...The choices are right up there!

Yea...I can see...Very interesting line up though...

[Smiles]

So watever comes up with C1?

C1! Thats a really good choice, Sir! What you see is what you get, Sir!

Well, theres not much i can figure out.

Well U get a zinger, a drink and a breast piece Sir.

A breast piece???Can i not get a wings?

Sorry Sir! Doesnt come with that!

Along wat does it come with!

We dont serve that here, Sir!

I thought u jus said u dont serve it with this alone.

No Sir, U got me wrong!

I got u Wrong???Huh!!! YOU SAID IT WRONG!

You want me to take the order, Sir?

[No thats ok, i was just passing time here with you]

Hell yea! Make a C1 for me!

Fine! Should I make it a meal?

Wats that?

You get to choose from french fries or an extra piece or extra rice.

Well then i'll go with the fries.

Small, Medium or Large?

Medium

Salted?

Yes!

the drink?

Yea wat about it?

Pepsi, Dew or Fanta?

Pepsi

Small, medium or Large???

medium

Ice cubes r no cubes???

No ice cubes!

Want cheese???

In my Pepsi???

Sir, cheese on the burger?

No. Please!

To be served here or to go?

[HEY!!!! HEYYYYYYYYY!!! I dont want your stupid burger! Another question and am leaving this place. I would rather drink 3 cups of water n sleep off.]

Sir! To be served here or to go???

[All worked up now]
Do you generally ask this many questions?

Sir!

No. Do u like asking questions? You know, is this something that you are fond of?

Thats my job, Sir!

Pissing off people??? You even call that a job? Is that really your job? What kinda job is that? What kinda sick sadist pays you for pissing off people like that?

Sir, Do you want me to take the order or not?

Is that how the person infront of me got that burger? I mean he should be one helluva Gandhian!

I think we are done here, Sir! Please step aside!

Why? Coz you are so miffed with my stupid questions?

Errr....yes, Sir?

Then now u know how i feel!!!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


Image stolen from a guy who steals art from other people.

Internet from home

So, good news. I got GPRS activated on my N70, connected my phone to my laptop, and now I have super-slow internet at home. hey, im not complaining.

Though I must say the mobile gmail is just as nifty as the actual gmail. Simple interfaces, ease in navigation, and so on and so forth, its just incredible.

The process of getting GPRS activated was another story altogether. Having received the mobile internet settings a week back, I spared no efforts in getting internet to function on my phone, but to no avail. Finally giving up (while simultaneously hating the fact that im giving up), I take it to an Airtel showroom. The chap there spent an hour fiddling with all the settings before he decided to involve 3 more people. So there was my phone, with four heads poring over it, when the cretin decides to drop the phone. oh sure, like that's going to work. So finally the problem turned out to be really bizarre. This was a new number I got from Airtel. the previous number was from Idea. The access points introduced by Idea were interfering with the access points of Airtel. Well, whodathunkit?

xkcd


Location: Yelagiri
Characters: Mayaavi and I
Talk about life imitating art..

xkcd is a great web comic

Thanks for the link mayaavi

Entrepreneurial Success

"Ryan Lackey wears body armor to business meetings. He flies armed helicopters to client sites. He has a cash flow problem: he is paid in hundred-dollar bills, sometimes shrink-wrapped bricks of them, and flowing this money into a bank is difficult. He even calls some of his company's transactions "drug deals" – but what Lackey sells is Internet access. From his trailer on Logistics Staging Area Anaconda, a colossal US Army base fifty miles north of Baghdad, Lackey runs Blue Iraq, surely the most surreal ISP on the planet. He is 26 years old."

I didn't conjure up an Imaginary guy

Monday, April 23, 2007

Hopeless people, pointless talk

hey

hey! wats up?

Nothing much! U?

We r just even then.

Hmm...so watever happened to that girl you got a number from.

lets not talk about it

Aaah...so thats a lotta talking to be done here.

Come on! Whats your problem now?

My problem??? Do i have a problem? I do haan???

Dei dei....dei...

Of all the people in this world "I" have a problem. I thought "U" had a problem.And the man who knows me best tells me this, that I HAVE A PROBLEM.

Dei dei....

Fine. Watever! If you dont wanna talk about it.

No. Jus one of those tough times.

I know...All you gotta do now is not to lose hope. The last thing that you wouldnt want is to lose all hope n be a zombie character sporting a miserable look on your face all day.

No. I dont want hope. Strip me fire me kick me kill me and the least thing I would ask for is hope. Thats killing me. People use it against me all the time. They give you hope and rob everything else.

everything???

Yea EVERYTHING!!!

hmmm

Yea, so i wanna become Master Hopeless. Hopelessness shall be my religion.

But why??? You are already showing grave symptoms of Alzheimer's. It scares me dude.

No I'm not. When you are without hope you dont care much. And that indifference makes you very attractive.

It does???

Never doubt it my friend. It sure is a plus. Indifference the new Mantra. Hopelessness the new religion. And I shall be its priest. Im gonna take it to the world. So that shall be the order of the NEW WORLD. Lets create it.

Ya right! Go get some sleep, dumb ass!!!

Enter Sandman



Title Courtesy: Ra.Ge

Have you always been a great kisser???

Men are so good, they can come up with tales for everything, answering even the weirdest possible question. And i chose to write this one up coz i found a situation like this so silly but the man still comes up with something that can keep the lady interested r atleast engaged for a while...:P

*Kiss* *Kiss* I Love *Kiss* you *Kiss*

Oh sweetheart! That feels so good!

Im Sure it does

Were you always such a great kisser?

Nay...It was hard...25 yrs of kissmanship!!!

kissmanship?

yeah! The Kissmanship! 25 years!

Tell me more! Wont you honey?

Its a long sad story i'll cut it short for u dear. A play in my kintergarden that had a kissing scene in the climax where the prince kisses the bride and takes her his lawfully wedded princess.

And???

Apparently i got over-enthusiastic!!!

At that age???

Ahh Men dont change...they are all the same! Atleast I was....

So watever happened???

She started bleeding.

What???

Yea BLEEDING...i apparently bit her.

So crude!

No i wasnt. It was very accidental. I wrote homeworks for her later on.

So sweet!

Yea so, while other kids were out there playing in the park merrily, i was practising my kissing lessons hard. I was kissing apples, oranges

I think we better stop that here.

Am glad u stopped me.

The lessons have paid off sweety-pie, havent they?

I guess so!

What was that again?

In this sentence the word 'and' occurs twice, the word 'eight' occurs twice, the word 'four' occurs twice, the word 'fourteen' occurs four times, the word 'in' occurs twice, the word 'occurs' occurs fourteen times, the word 'sentence' occurs twice, the word 'seven' occurs twice, the word 'the' occurs fourteen times, the word 'this' occurs twice, the word 'times' occurs seven times, the word 'twice' occurs eight times, and the word 'word' occurs fourteen times.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Style that food

The picture on the left is what you see on the KFC advertisements. The one on the right is what the surly waiter gives if you step into their store. Why am I not surprised that food stylists and photographers can earn like $2000 in a single day? I guess It's not just supermodels that get Photoshop face lifts. Link

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Panorama


Panoramic view as seen from the tallest peak at Yelagiri, we got there after a 3 km trek. I experimented with a million tools before I got that proper panorama. I tried Hugin, enblend, Autopano-SIFT and AutopanoPro. I was too lazy to select common points in Hugin, so finally settled for the fully automatic AutopanoPro.

The picture itself is kind of disappointing though, the closer hills and trees obscure the farther away plains. Though it looks peaceful, the full drama of 960m about sea level is missing.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tunnels Galore

The world suddenly seems to be obsessed with the idea of Submarine tunnels. A decade after British and French engineers demonstrated that it could be done, and after the two governments showed it could be maintained and run profitably, more engineers and governments are waking up to the idea.

Spain and Morocco want one. Right under one of the busiest maritime routes too, I wonder who is going to foot the $30Million bill though. If the Chunnel construction is any indication then the schedule and cost are bound to be many times the original estimate.

The one Russia wants to Alaska under the Bering strait, makes the Spanish tunnel seem small. The proposed 102km tunnel outclasses both the Spanish 39km tunnel and the 51.5km Chunnel. It is estimated to cost about $10-12Billion and is expected to pay for itself in 20 years.

Makes me wonder though, once these tunnels are complete, one would be able to drive from any continent to any other continent if one wants to? Hmm... right there is the idea for a never-been-done-before!

Dramatic Skies


| Olympus C4000 | F/2.8 | 6.8 mm | 1/800 Sec | ISO100 | No Flash | Post Processing: Curves |

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Knock Knock Knock

So you've heard all the knock-knock jokes out there. So its times for the knock-knock meta jokes :p

Knock, knock!
Who's there?
Banana.
Banana who?
Knock, knock!
Who's there?
Banana.
Banana who?
Knock, knock!
Who's there?
Banana.
Banana who?
Knock, knock!
Who's there?
Orange who?
Orange you glad I didn't say "banana"?



Will you remember me in an hour?
Yes.
Will you remember me in a day?
Yes.
Will you remember me in a week?
Yes.
Will you remember me in a month?
Yes.
Will you remember me in a year?
Yes.
I think you won't.
Yes, I will.
Knock, knock!
Who's there?
See? You've forgotten me already!



and the best of them all..


Knock, knock!
Come in
. . .

Meetings



More!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Tug


Here's one more teaser I did for the team-excursion organizers.

PS: I shamelessly stole this and the earlier source images from some flickr users (probably copyrighted). I promise to find them again and link to the originals.

Image Credit: LFM

Up in arms

What is the probability that the next person you see will have an above average number of arms:

a) Zero
b) Highly unlikely
c) Almost certain
d) Certain

Want to go out for a coffee?

Some people in my office are working out plans for a group outing. They wanted to send out some mailers, I made this for them.



Image Credit: Giant Ginkgo

Drunken driving flash game


Check this flash game. Reminds you of copter a bit... ok fine, a LOT. I got upto 8 pints, been crashing at 30 meters since. Kinda cool application of a simple control system, I guess. Changing P and I parameters relative to the duration of mouse-button-down.

Software Development



I've seen this image a million times before, and I'm sure you have too. But it never fails to evoke a smile for me. So I share.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Seat Belts

Did you really think they were dispensable ? Read this excellent account by a paramedic on what he sees at accident scenes and why he thinks seat belts are here to stay. I wish everyone would read this and use seatbelts.

here be some interesting quotes:

Do you know how we can tell the difference between people who were wearing their seatbelts and those who weren’t, at the scene of an automobile accident? The ones who were wearing their seatbelts are standing around saying “This really sucks,” and the ones who weren’t are kinda just lying there.

In a collision, you have three or four sub-collisions all taking place in sequence. First, the vehicle hits some object. The vehicle abruptly slows, but unrestrained objects inside it continue at the same speed, in the same direction. Then the unrestrained body hits the interior of the vehicle, and starts to slow. That’s the second collision. That body’s internal organs are still moving at speed until they hit the inside of the chest (or get cheese-sliced by their supporting ligaments—and that’s where you get things like bisected livers or aortas). The fourth collision is when the bowling ball you left on the rear deck hits you in the back of the head, because that continued at the same speed in the same direction. Newtonian physics: Learn it, live it, love it.



The article talks about a bowling ball in the rear. I try telling people how dangerous it is to leave stuff behind the back seat. Believe me a cell phone left in the rear can go cleanly right through your head in the event of a frontal collision. You just cant help but love Newtonian physics.

This post brought you you by a guy who does not wear a Helmet on a motorbike. I know I know..

Rules for writing

Kurt Vonnegut passed away recently on the 11th of April. Though I haven't read him, I've heard enough about him to want to read him, especially in the last few days.

What I found extremely interesting though is his advice on writing short stories. Bagombo Snuff Box:

  1. Use the time of a total stranger in such a way that he or she will not feel the time was wasted.

  1. Give the reader at least one character he or she can root for.

  1. Every character should want something, even if it is only a glass of water.

  1. Every sentence must do one of two things -- reveal character or advance the action.

  1. Start as close to the end as possible.

  1. Be a sadist. No matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them -- in order that the reader may see what they are made of.

  1. Write to please just one person. If you open a window and make love to the world, so to speak, your story will get pneumonia.

  1. Give your readers as much information as possible as soon as possible. To heck with suspense. Readers should have such complete understanding of what is going on, where and why, that they could finish the story themselves, should cockroaches eat the last few pages.