Today was an unexpected holiday, something that most of us would be glad
to have had. Not me, so many things that needed to be done needed to
happen today. Oh why that Ex-PM have to pop off now!
Today was the last working day this semester. There are lab reports that
need signatures, a lab internal that was carried over from Wednesday the
26th, and a bunch of other things that needed to be finished.
All that has to be done tomorrow. Our exams start the coming Monday, the
1st of December.
This is going to be good.
Till then. I'll sipping on tea and flitting through the pages of books,
and traipsing down the halls of learning, and all that jazz.
Listening to Windows Weekly now (http://twit.tv/ww)
Wait. Nitya borrows one of my ears, by force: I hear the words "Get me"
followed by a bunch of song/artist names:
No time. No time.
Today found me glued to the TV flipping channels 200 thru 213 - NDTV
24x7 thru CNN-IBN thru Times NOW thru News X thru Headlines Today thru
BBC thru CNN thru CNBC thru NDTV Profit. (don't count, they left out
some of the numbers). And the worst part is when I'd sworn off watching
when I woke up this morning.
Poor resolve. Self-pity.
We say these words again and againSeems to sound right, doesn't it? All that crap people give about you being so-and-so, smart, cute, funny, "the best", the "best there was, the best there is, the best there ever will be".
But they still sound the same
It was in my eyes, in my eyes
They were just easy lies
- Fix teeth.
Get Driver's License that's been languishing in the Road Transport Office in Battarahalli for the past three months.
- Fix a lot of other things.
- Knock these things off the list.
(If you think this is unusual, and yes irresponsible behaviour on anybody with a cellphone, then just come by and ask for the guy who never has to go to the toilet during exam time, and also ask for the guy who does email while downloading junk. He can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org)
I usually put the phone on the counter next to the sink. And proceed with whatever it is that I've come there to do.
The speaker on the back is capable of putting out a loud enough sound to make things audible when one has the shower going in full spray mode, and is nice when you can sing along with a guide. At least it drowns out the parts of the song where you go completely off-key and is a comfort to people like me.
Somehow, I can never seem to get a song that sounds perfectly alright in my head to come out sounding right when singing it. Except for that time when I'm using my falsetto voice. It always seems to sound great when I emulate the female voice. Of course, it may sound a little gruffy but that adds that little bit of sensuality to the mix, and that makes the ladies swoon all that faster. (The ones who are into sexy-vocal-chord equipped ladies, that is. And for once one of my virtues doesn't seem to benefit me, because for those of you who know me, I am the last individual on earth who'd fit that description.)
(Actually, let's go down this path: where did that "last individual on earth..." expression come up. Why WOULD anybody want to be that person! Earth would be the dullest place to be if you were that person. You'd have the #1 blog on Technorati, that nobody would be reading! Your blog would be the only thing people would see when they hit the "I Feel Lucky" (so lucky that you don't exist to make the most of all that luck!) button on Google, but there wouldn't be anybody to do that. And thinking about Google, there'd be nobody to come up with all these cool free services! and nobody to use them. Nobody at college, nobody to say Hello to, who'd you call, you'd have the best sounding call in the network, because there'd be no congestion, but there are only so many times you can blog your conversation with the Nice Fake Lady At The Other End when you dial 121, just thinking about it makes me feel sad. all that goodness, and nobody to share it with! Nobody! Sharing is good, nothing changes that.)
And where were we? Yes, back to the old shower-singing routine. I was crooning some happy folksy tune one day, (pa pa pa/papapapapapapapapapa...) and I get a text message just as I was hitting that high'pa' (yes! I was feelin' hyper too!) note. So, my phone goes ding ding and the Pandora's soapbox for soapy trouble is opened.
I happened to be shampooing at that time. And I was reading the instructions behind the bottle, or something to that effect. (I was pondering on how sad and low on inspiration the people who write the stuff on the back of shampoo bottles had become.
Something like this would be fun to read:
1. Take generous amounts (you can always buy more later)
2. Work into lather with twisty, circly and flippity actions, like you're mucking about in an Ocean Of White Softyness
3. Go nuts putting it on everything you can see before the foamy stuff gets into your eyes
4. The fun is over: it's in your eyes, try waiting for at least 5 minutes, for the Chemical X to work it's magic on your scalp. Meanwhile think of something to explain why you look like you dragged self out of a disco at 3 AM on a Saturday (not applicable in Bangalore) and spent the rest of the night counting the number of pavement slabs till you got home (again, not applicable in Bangalore, except if you're a cop), and then spent the rest of the weekend trying to make sense of these instructions
5. Rinse (eyes if required, most probably) and repeat if required. (yes, let's do this all again!)
This would be something a lot of people could relate to. Making the shampooing experience better, and not just wasting all that space on the back with stuff that people don't need guidance in.)
And where were we? Yes, the song had stopped.
I was in step 2 of the shampooing process. Out of the tub, over to the phone. Must get that song going again. And picking up the phone like I always do. In a warm hand-embrace, encircling it with all my fingers, I realise that in step 2 the hand is "mucking about in an Ocean Of White Softyness".
And yes, the phone wasn't too pleased when it got step 2. Currently, the loudspeaker on the back sounds a little hoarse. And all songs sound like my renditions of them. And now, I can't fake sing in the shower. And I feel very sad about that. But there is hope that someday everything will clear up.
Fake singing days are those days when I open/close mouth rapidly in tune with mental image of song (oxymoron?).
:-0 :-! :-0 :-P :-0 :-@ :-) :-D :-!! :-> :-@ :-) :-D :-!! :-> :-0 :-! :-0 :-P :-D :-!! :-> :-@ :-) :-!! :-> :-0 :-! :-0 :-0 :-! :-0 :-0 :-! :-0 :-P :-0 :-@ :-) :-D :-0 :-@ :-) :-D :-@ :-@ :-@ :-@ :-@ :-@
Pa pa pa pa pa pa pa:
:-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@ :-P :-@
Look right to you?
Sorry about that Microhard. :-)
Where? Who? What? Where? What? Who? Who? Where? What? Who? What? Where? What? Where? Who? What? Who? Where?
Break Me Down? Break Me Up? Break Me Down? Break Me Left? Break Me Right?
Due North? Due South? Due West? Due East?
Are You Right? Are You Wrong? Are You Unright? Are You Unwrong?
I'll Take Forever? I'll Take No Time? I'll Take Forever? I'll Take No Time?
Not too coherent, right?
That's what I thought. Getting well past into the end of the First Season of 24. And it doesn't look like things are getting any better, but I know it will turn out alright in the end. There are a few things I must do. And now, I am gulping down my second mug of tea in the past half hour. And I don't think I can quite stomach this one.
I've always liked tea, but somehow I find myself pre-disposed to dissatisfaction whenever I think of the thing. It's not really done me any good. I've never actually got a kick out of drinking the thing. Maybe it's one of those useless dependencies that one can never quite get over. It's seems harshg to be judging the drink for something that it never promised in the first place.
Why must we drink tea? It's a good question? Or coffee? Why can't we just get our butts off our chairs and do what we are meant to do. Just screw the beverages. Stop depending on things. Just stop!
I would like to go to every person I know, and just grab them and shake them about till all those silly things that people depend upon for 'satisfaction' aka 'just-righty-ness' fall out.
Going to throw this one out. (plastic cracking)
(binning worn out pen, made of plastic)
I've been distracted.
(amma calls out for assistance with the laundry)
Like I said, I've been distracted. I need to focus.
Focus Lackof Focus LackOf Focus LackOf Focus LackOf Focus LackOf Focus Lackof Focus LackOf Focus LackOf Focus LackOf Focus LackOf FocusLackOfFocusLackOf FocusLackOfFocusLackOf FocusLackOfFocusLackOf FocusLackOfFocusLackOfFocusLackOfFocusLackOfFocusLackOfFocusLackOf
My fingers hurt now. But that felt good.
Oh yeah, they hurt.
What must I do? Get the team together, time for a little talk with everybody. Must show everybody where we all stand.
A little tip: when you're tagging your posts in blogger (labelling), there's an annoying auto-fill feature that forces the autofilled option on you regardless of what you've entered, pressing Esc ignores the auto-filled label.
Who wouldn't fail to be fascinated by her! It's simply inevitable, the eyes, they just have a lot to say.
Amma got a hold of me today and asked to try and recreate the Afghan girl using my sister Nitty as a model.
So, when Nitya got back we got past her "I'll look like a beggar excuses" and came up with some pretty good shots. Spent about an hour trying ot get the look right. There was always something missing, and most of all were the eyes, Nitya's eyes are brown, so it's a little hard unless you're one of those individuals with a talent for seeing chocolate grass everywhere (if you consume grass and it tastes like chocolate too, then please let me know, I'd be very happy to give you a tour of my backyard).
It was difficult to get the lighting just right. I have a silly point-and-shoot Sony DSC-W1 which doesn't allow for much customization of F-stop numbers and
I have not posted a picture of the Afghan girl since it's been pretty much copyrighted under every silly law possible, but clicking the title of the post ought to take you to Sharbat Gula's Wikipedia page.
Steve McCurry's done a lot in her name now. He sells posters of the original photograph and a part of the money goes into the Afghan Girl Fund, to educate improverishered girls in Afghanisthan.
Just wish Creative Commons was around when the picture was taken, imagine the possibilities.
Ah, missed opportunities, so many variations on that work could have been done. But I guess part of the beauty of that work is that you simply cannot change that potrait.
But who said you couldn't try:
Wouldn't you want be this girl?
Update: The eyes were done up with Picasa 3. The new touch-up tool really works!
Hello World! and welcome to my own HTML webpage. I am so cool, but you don't know that now, do you? See how I did this, made this happen, come to life...
Note: this didn't turn out that well, Blogger took all my HTML and turned it into crap. Check the source if you want proof.
See, I'm not completely locked down, I like some things.
Don't know how many of you have your heads up your butts and your butts up your throats bawling about "Old Facebook" but here's a little tip that'll let you customize your newsfeed content right up to junking all the lolz and keeping all the stuff that I post.
Prioritization of content. Something I like.
In a comment that came out of the blue, somebody mentioned that they liked blog. I like unsolicited opinions. Unsolicited opinions are good! They don't mean much, but they're nice to hear when you least expect them.
Thank you Anu (the other one).
And here's another way to customize your Nooz Feed:
Look out for this thing at the bottom of your feed.
And you got this:
Odd. I'm not too worried about heartbreaks of the friends.
Nor about Friends of Friends.
Or lolz on other peeps walls.
Or the latest party they're hitting and I'm not which serves to remind just how anti-social self is.
Or groups. Or pretty much anything. I like Photos and Stuff that people have written: notes.
There's scope for the imagination there! Interpretation, my second favourite activity after, tagging and commenting! (unresolved dependencies here)
The More About You And Less About You Stuff are summarized as below for convinience.
Wouldn't you like to know which list you're on! Haha! Fret not. This is just a sample listing. None of these people are my real friends. Everybody is on one list. Which one, I shall not reveal, but know this, your comments will be appreciated.
Try and get past the lolz. You might actually find me being nice to you.
"I am nice" is another thing I'd like to keep reminding myself about.
Note: I don't approve of, or encourage cruelty to animals. Cats despite being perceived as the selfish beasties that they are, are adorable and fun to have around.
Cats must not have the misfortune of being named Spaghetti, constructed of spaghetti, or being thrown about on Facebook as Spaghetti cats should be thrown about on Facebook.
Indeed, it is a very sad day for the cats on Facebook. The people behind SuperPoke and the dweebs who put this app on their profile should be ashamed of themselves, and anybody who throws cats at me invites my most scathing comments on their newsfeed, so, if you don't want to feel like an even bigger dweeb (which incidentally, you are for having thrown crap my way) you'd better take that off your profile right now.
And please, keep sharing your life with me. You might invite ridiculously lengthy comments on items from time to time, depending on the phase of the moon, my feeling towards you, cats, the government, the world, dandruff, and various other chemical lochas in my head.
And remember, cats are fun!
I'd prefer squirrels though, but the trouble is they eat cats. Or, was the other way round? Pip and Squeek. Lovely names, aren't they?
It began here, and then I did this and that, and then I talked to somebody, and then things got bloody, and took a deep breath and let the backup commence, and then started doing the heavy lifting, couldn't hold it and fell, and then got some help, which was helpful, and then saw what I wanted to see, and almost passed out (of asphyxiation), and then thought a little about things as things came together, and then started seeing the signs of change and then some, and then I started to breathe once again.
So, all in all it was one exciting night. A first for me, and for the iPhone. It's heart has been opened (almost, but not quite). And it feels very different.
Used mother's credit card to register with the iTunes store that requires you to have a credit card for free apps as well. (Part of their FairPlay DRM bogus!)
Installed a bunch of apps. Woke up the next morning, and restored the phone's contacts, calendars and settings from backup.
Started playing with things the next morning. Wifi doesn't work too well, the signal being too weak most of the time. Keep losing connections at different locations around the house unless you keep it in fixed positions for a few minutes each.
The phone's back in good shape now, and Diya (who seems to have become extremely possessive over the weekend) has forbidden me from further contact with the phone. And so I started thinking about working on Android. I have to work with Java which serves me very well since I have a course on Java this semester. It looks like fun.
Downloading the new Android SDK as we speak.
The power is out. We shall overcome.
Win to lose.
What was the saying again?
I'll do better,
I'm no go-getter,
The sun shall setter,
In some time, a new day,
Will come, and we'll play another game,
Things may still be the same,
I wouldn't have it any other way.
Because, Scrabble, is a lot like life. It's made up of words seem to make sense, when looked at on a turn-by-turn basis, but zoom out, and you'll find a story there. Somewhere.
Life's little joys.
Time on your hands? Got nothing better to do?
Why don't you think about doing something? Anything!
Being productive, inspirational, and of some use to others who are too damn sloppy to fill in their profile connection details is probably not the best way to spend your time, but I argue, it's the best thing you could do for yourself.
Because, it's all about reliving those awkward moments, and standing up to reclaim those lost memories. Sure! you can upload photos and tag every last pixel, but then, don't you want to connect through those times that you didn't have a camera at hand? Sure I know there are people who are just waiting to upload the pictures they capture 5 microseconds after the shutter closes, but come on, let's be practical. Not everyone is a shutterbugger!
Which is why we must fill in the gaps and we do that through profile details. There must be some way people can associate with all their friends. Those awkward moments will never die now thanks to Facebook.
And the best part, connection details show up in your news feed, so all your friends can find out about that time when you made a complete ass of yourself... An exercise in self-humiliation, but it is these things that keep us grounded, humble and ever ready to face another bout.
So, fear not gentle people, and fill in the gaps. Bridge the past and future with the memories that make us human, and grow stronger in your humiliation!
Unless, you know of a Lacuna Inc.!
Update: Certain people started asking me questions regarding this bit.
A 4-Step howto for those of you who've got better things to do than figure out how to get this done quickly.
Hit the Friends Tab at the top of the screen.
Use the search box to search for the friend you want to add details for or hit the 'Everyone' tab to get a list of all your friends in no particular order whatsoever. Or head on down to get a list of friends arranged by order of latest status update.
Found your friend? Then hit that small rectangle next to their link, and it'll open out as shown.
Add the details you want and ask your friend to confirm these details.
OpenBSD is a sort of "more open" fork of the NetBSD project. And there's a fascinating story there as well, read more into the Wikipedia page for OpenBSD and you'll see what I'm talking about.
Wikipedia page on OpenBSD here.
And there's a wonderful book:
"Free For All: How Linux and the Free Software Movement Undercut the High Tech Titans" by Peter Wayner. It profiles the people and events behind open source distributions like Linux, OpenBSD and others. And going with the open source tradition, it too is available as in print and as a free digital download here. The book's chapter on BSD is here.
Getting Dirty: If you're looking for a distro where you control everything from the packages that are installed to the choice of shell, the algorithm used to encrypt /etc/shadow then this is the distribution for you. The package management scheme is really simple. Know where your package is? Fetch the path and get it! With just one command. Simple, get dirty with OS to know it fully. Imagine doing this with Windoze! (hypocritcal, I know.)
Warning: the system that you get is barebones and contains virtually nothing that you'll recognize if you're too comfortable with distros like Ubuntu and OpenSUSE. This is a truly customisable distritbution that forces you to take a look at the man documentation if you want anything done.
C? H? S? Can? How? Show!
The installation procedure, especially the hard drive partitioning scheme left me flummoxed and clutching at /s! You are simply put, forced to hand-code the partition table. You'll be confronting the C/H/Ss (Cylinders/Heads/Sectors) of your hard drive. The context-sensitive help is not very helpful if you have no clue what you're dealing with here, so, if you really need to use BSD, get a friends help, or print out a good walkthrough for reference. You'll need it during the installation, trust me.
Whew! I made it past the install but it doesn't boot!
This happened to me the first time. Some mess up in the partioning. Forgot to set the bootable flag on the correct partition! Had to re-install! :-)
Once you get past the partitioning stage, the rest is a breeze (make sure you're well cooled!). You'll also learn the importance of depending on the man pages here itself. Most of the tools you'll be using for the partitioning have man pages that can be pulled up within the installer itself. So, read the man pages, and you'll be hacking away at /dev/com0 in a couple of hours.
Now wait! so, this is just like Linux?
And for those of you who use linux: BSD is NOT linux. Repeat, NOT linux. It's a completely different implementation of the original AT&T UNIX. You'll find many things the same, especially the API calls, but if you're used to GUIs and find working with the terminal a hard job, then this is not for you, but if you're willing to learn and explore, then, go for it!
The OpenBSD and Linux developers team have never thought much about each other. It's like two nerds competing for marks! One more mark, and I'm better. Each thinks the others work is sucky! In fact, there are some interesting quotes:
Linus Torvalds wrote here:
"I think the OpenBSD crowd is a bunch of masturbating monkeys, inAnd here is Theo's take on the Linux kernel:
that they make such a big deal about concentrating on security to the
point where they pretty much admit that nothing else matters to them."
more quotes from Linus here.
It's terrible, everyone is using it, and they don't realize how bad it is. And the Linux people will just stick with it and add to it rather than stepping back and saying, 'This is garbage and we should fix it.
quoted in Lyons, Daniel. "Is Linux For Losers?", Forbes, 2005-06-16. URL accessed on 2007-01-10
Yep, no love lost there alright, but, they are some of the best minds on earth. And they make the best software out there!
You get a nice reassuring email in your /root/mail from the creator of the OpenBSD project Theo de Raadt when you boot in for the first time as root.
I'll put up a not-so-detailed, yet, superficial walkthrough of my installation process and what I went through post-install. That should make it a little clearer!
And so therefore:
It's a great distro to learn UNIX sys administration from the ground up. It leaves you with nothing but the documentation to depend and very little GUI to work with, if any.
It's all about the learning. I think I'll like OpenBSD. It's nothing like what I've experienced in the *NIX universe. And Puffy looks cute! Don't worry Tux! I <3 you too!
Thank you Theo, and Linus!
Most of my time these days are spend watching this screen now. With 26 current games, some of them with the same person, I can't find time for anything else.
A gentle muffled bing alerts me that it's my turn in one of those games.
And it's time to go.
I start playing when the sun is high in the sky, and before I know it, the sun has gone down and the room is in near perfect darkness. But light's overrated! You don't need light to play. All you need is fingers that haven't been sucked into Carpel tunnels and you should be ready to play the next move.
Friends whom I play with also alert me to my next move by sending an "I'm done" message.
Just making sure you get it. How considerate!
Spend a few minutes on the next one and it's time to wait for that bing again. What a life!
The rules are simple. Make as many words as you can, but efficiently. Don't have an unlimited supply of tiles, do we?
Fact: I've never managed to put down all 7 tiles! Maybe that'll be my last move. One bingo! And no more.
Updated: Just kidding. That's never going to happen. Stay away from this!
Nope! Aha, that's a word!
Once more pogalamma daddy?
I'm probably the luckiest one alive, to have been one among mee-lions of other lucky (suckers?) ones. If you're one of the lucky ones, you're hopefully less puzzled than I am.
I would appreciate it, if somebody enlightened me as to what in the name of all that is clean and pure and good in Free Ticket Land this is supposed to mean.
Got this email a couple of days ago, and I despite my wondrous intellectual feats (which include... ah, well, there was this, ah, um, I don't recall, I've done so many things...) I have yet to crack this nut. What was the intent? How foolish do they think we are?
Am I a w(h)inner? Am I going to win(e)? Do I stand a chance to win a FREE ticket? How many tickets can I win: one per day? 21 per month?
The words "winner of free ticket to be announced everyday" should get my anti-scam filters all excited. Thunderbird was nice enough to parse the message and advise me on the basis of the conclusions it had drawn "Dude, this is a spam message. Don't bother, if I could hold your hand, I'd probably be taking it down to that key labelled Erase From Existence." And yes, the 'Dear Customer' addressal at the top shows that they just sent this out as part of a mass scam without even running it through Mail Merge. Spammers!
I may have to go to Chennai one of these days, so I'm hoping that one of these free tickets will come through. Talk about being desperate to save Rs. 115! I think I'll take a much needed trip to Jupiter. They did say anywhere, right?
If you've just come across this by accident, and have no idea of who I really am, then this might be your goooooal-den owe-per-choonity to help out a fellow who cannot parse stuff like this.
What do you think I should do? Email me. Or leave your suggestions in ze' comments.
I learnt this new Frenchie phrase yesterday when Nitya was prepping herself for her first tests beginning today - Comment ca' va?
I don't know what it means, but it is in you to help a fellow out, you could supply an answer to that as well.
The old adage might need a little revision to: the best scams in life are for free.
Note: I left Twitter in Jan '09. I do all my u-blogging on Identi.ca.
To put it illustratively, I posted a comment on the tweet as shown in illustration alongside.
Another way to use Facebook comments:
To provide some insight into thine rantings. Because, you see 140 chars is simply not enough to (adequately):
- explain the fun-da-mentals of string theory
- say how you feel right then (but not later)
- log something a person said then but regretted later
- make a big deal out of something not that big a deal. Indulge in a little patronising
- Be creative (read dorky)
- Rag on the people (even though you never got ragged in your life)
- Beat up Microsoft and the people in it
- Talk big, and then walk small. (after talking bigger, of course!)
- Be innovative in the "How can
- Admit to having stepped over the line.
- Get people to join you on Twitter, make some regret their choices.
- Rag twitter, on twitter. Traitors blush!
- Spread the word.
- Set milestones.
So, the next time you mouth off about your loved ones, or list pet peeves, just bank on your Facebook profile and the patience of your Fs to parse the long, detailed and (most often) mouthing offs behind the mouth offings on
Don't forget to add the
I've begun using the comment-on-stories feature on Facebook. Something I guess most people haven't even bothered to try out, despite it being a part of the basic interface.
If a person does anything on FB, the an event corresponding to that transaction is created. All these events go into the news-feed for that person.
Examples include: adding an app, removing an app, adding a friend, removing a friend, a sex change, a break-up, a marriage, or anything else that you like.
All these events can be individually considered and commented upon by the people in your friends list. It's a slightly easier way to get responses on what's going on a person's life.
I discovered this feature a while back while trying to understand the purpose of the news feed. I wondered, why list a bunch of events if you can't connect the dots between the events and your messages to that person regarding those events. It just didn't make sense. Look for the 'Plus' button next to each event. Looks like you can comment on almost anything!
The comment system doesn't seem to work with your Home page. You have to visit each person's profile page to comment. Integration the H. page would be the logically next step. And I don't see why they can't do it either.
So, the commenting system is something I use extensively these days (to comment on mine and other's newsfeeds). If you've enabled notifications, you should get an email when somebody comments on a event in your newsfeed. And you could build a conversation right there by replying to the comment. And it goes on and on. I tend to have self-conversations! Very few have actually replied.
Sometimes, I don't get people. Why join FB, if all you want to do, is throw apps on your profile?
And the stupid thing, the news feed isn't actualy a feed in the technical sense. You can't subscribe to it via an RSS reader. They should work on that too. Zuckerborg has his work cut out for him.
And people are just missing out on some of the best things FB has to offer.
Wake up people! comment your heart out, it is a democracy, you must have something to say about your friend Mogun becoming Maggie!
But right now, all of that has changed.
Nitya asks me to get a photocopy of her marksheets.
I think I shall take a little walk and clear my head. And get the p.cs
My bloodshot eyes betray my computer fixation.
I can't be saving the galaxy all day.
Thud. Thud. Thud. 3 second frequency. Seems to be coming from the water pipes in the walls. What is that girl doing? Water is flowing down Rush...
Ah, italics are so hard to turn off in Blogger. Looks like there are a couple of bugs they just left hnging in this thing for old times sake.
I've found myself giving in to the temptation of putting in a couple of italicized phrases into all my communications. I've tried reasoning this out. It seems that of late, I've had a lot of things to be sceptical about.
Diya comes up the steps counting down from 20... 1 with her truckload of books in her bag. She just complimented Indiravelliamma. "Ah, you're the better teacher than my teacher in school." Finishes off with a whistled-rendering of 'Ajab Si' (the song all those newly-hiding-coochie-cooers) are listening to.
I spent about half an hour this evening on the terrace, watching the crows circle in the sky. There are plenty of trees around my house and plenty of crows, seems to me like there's the C in AECS does mean something else, besides Co-operative, that is. Seemed to me they were playing a game with one another. A few of them would chase each other and go around my house. Come back full circle and they would then descend upon the ones resting in the tree, who would let of a flurry of excited caws and then take off, all flying in a sort of pattern, looked to me like they were making a star shap with their flight patterns, and then some of them would land. Again two of them would take off, chasing each other all around, and then descend into the tree, more would join in the fun and then as it darkened, things quitened down and everybody retired for the night.
Wouldn't it be lovely to sleep at 6 in the evening and wake up 12 hours later?
"Amoeba paramecium" recites Diya from my room from which I have been displaced on the occasion of I. velliamma's visit. Wonderful woman. Diya is actually sitting down to study before 10 PM. Which is quite an improvement. I remember how she taught me Physics on the eve of my Second Board Exam (for all of you who don't, that's the 12th grade examinations, and yes, the capitalization hopefully conveys to some measure the importance that society gives this. But society exists to overwhelm everything. The First Board Exams are important too.). I wasn't a stellar student, and needed some help. Thank you for being there. I am where I am partly thanks to you. Diya will do well tomorrow.
I have been meaning to talk to somebody, trouble is people are so busy these days, and simply cannot be found. I've found solace in the birds and bees, or more specifically, in the crows and the bees. (except when they proceed to crap on, and sting respectively) All my friends are either working, or going to college in distant lands. And mobile phones are the ultimate multi-tasking devices around, so detrimental to the quality of a conversation, albeit the clear voice delivery.
The ants in the bowl of the toilet still say hello, and there's hasn't been a single day when I haven't dipped my hands into the bowl (in the middle of a certain process the nature of which one could only describe as excretory) and brought them to safety. Guess that makes me one of the good guys.
There is a brood of squirrels nesting in a small space in a nice cosy space between the top of the pillar and the ceiling of the A-frame that forms the front of the house. Amma (Malayalam for mother) has been observing them all day, and thinks that their mother has abandoned them, or has more likely been detained elsewhere (read not caught in traffic). Which makes it a very bad situation for the young ones. We've been trying to figure out how to get up there and get them out of their situation. (They've become desperate enough to chew on the plastic, and that can't ever be good.) No ladder we have is going to reach there me trying to shimmy up the pillar does not bode good for the structural integrity of the pillar. So, we'll have to try and effect some kind of rescue.
Babu, our driver said he could get somebody to get them down. We've kept a box all ready for them to move into. By tomorrow, if the mother's not back, we'll move them in. Diya will finally get all the squeeeeerily pleasure she wants.
Creature comforts: we all like!
I'm feeling a bit heavy. I am some percentage of the mass of the universe. (aren't you?)
Update: Diya reading, "Expected lifetime: Housefly: 1-4 months, Human beings: 60-70 years, Lion: 15-20 years. SQUIRRELS: 8-9 years! Amma get them, amma please!"
My eyes really hurt.
Maybe I should turn to some far saner pursuits. Like work towards building a nice vocabulary of DBMS terminology that could come in handy during the oral-round of the lab on Wednesday. That would have been much more beneficial than living a fantasy that I know will take some time to play out. I'm of course referring to the iPhone fantasy.
Man's fascination with all things tech. Quite remarkable to see how we go gaga over these fusions of plastic, silicon, logic, metal, and things we can't quite see. Maybe it's the sheer awe that people like us could come up with something so extraordinarily functional, and capable of enriching our lives in ways we could never have imagined just a decade ago.
I've been following the tweets, plurks, friendfeeds, and blogs today [Engadget, Gizmodo], and if there's one thing I've learnt. People are passionate, yes. People will spend the whole day spreading the word, and talking endlessly about a device that does not guarantee happiness, or wealth or anything that is beyond it's invisible limbs that spread throughout the internets. Why then are they so passionate? What drives them into this frenzy? Is the JesusPhone really our salvation with respect to silicon-induced bytedrool? Is it going to save us all? Sorry, pardon my scepticism: is He going to save us all?
wwdc, apple, iPhone, steve, keynote: these are the terms that twistori is tracking. It's wonderful to watch people's thoughts scrolling up the screen, continuously, never stopping. Makes me think, what would the world be like if everybody just stopped thinking, or feeling, or doing.
Would the world be a happier place without thoughts? Without these catalysts of tech-induced mania? I must admit, I've spent a lot of time coveting the iPhone already, and I've found that I'm tired at the end of it all, and no closer to the phone than I was before I began coveting. So, I must hit the 'Esc' button and think for a minute.
Is any of this worth losing sleep over? Can't I just read about it in the papers tomorrow?
Tomorrow: that's like a era gone by in the world of keynotes and product launches. If I'm not up tonight watching the blog posts fly up the screen, I'm not being a true Apple Fanboy.
But then you really have to make a choice. You v/s the iPhone.
You're in control of your own life. Remember?
My friends seem to disagree. They think that I'm not in control. They never see me these days, they say. There was a meeting recently. I'd promised I'd go, half-heartedly for I knew my chances were slim. But then as things turned out, I couldn't really go. They called me up after they met and made me aware of their concern in a call that went on for about 90 minutes.
Maybe I'm not in control.
If not, then who steers my vessel on the course of Destiny in Life's through Life's (oft stormy) seas?
I can only hope that I meet Steve with an iPhone v.2 on the way. I heard Google Maps (combined with the GPS) comes especially in handy for people lost at sea.
---------------2 minutes later-----------------
Update: A whole truckload on tweets came raining down on me while I finished the above line. Here's what I could gather as they went ---beeeping--- by:
- WWDC starts in 2 hrs and 15 mins and counting
- WWDC site is down: "We'll be back!"
- Same goes for all Apple Stores across the world.
- Twitter pulling out all stops to meet with the terabytes of tweets it'll have to handle when the keynote kicks off (it's looking barer at the minute, and people say it might go down at any minute.)
- People are streaming into the Moscone center at the minute.
- I am in danger of turning this into a liveblog. STOP!
I can hardly wait, nerves are a flutter despite the cool weather here...
Ooh. Some 5-Star Bournvita ought to keep me warm through the keynote!
Wait, wasn't I supposed to... bah! Who cares, the tweets come in.
The livebloggers are cracking their knuckles and getting their fingers warmed...
Here we go in about 2 hours.
Oh joy! (rubbing hands with gleeeee) I really don't think I'm control of anything at the moment, I just want to know!
Update: Listened to an audio stream, for about 5 mins till I started getting tired of the lags in the middle and only got to hear the clapping, and the klackety clack of the avid livebloggers keyboard. Ah 3G is there, but a tweet from Mr. Santosh GS just about sums up what everybody thinks, me not included. For a guy who has never had a cellphone, what else can I do but drool? Someday, someday, all the drooling I did, with pay off. Apple will release a phone that offers me sound financial/relationship/living advice, sans disclaimers. :)
The liePhone? We'll just have to wait and see.
"Life these days and more importantly, relationships, don't mean much unless
they're validated by your profile and your friend counts on
People these days are becoming increasingly dependent on Facebook for social gratification. They spend less time outdoors that they ever did, which is not surprising considering all the fun they're having on there.
A FB App is this handy, clutter-philic piece of code that you can install on your profile to deliver different kinds of information which you can use in combination with other apps, and create a sort of mashup on your profile page. But the trouble with these apps is:
- They (most often than not) do the same thing under different names (redundancy)
- They don't really do anything useful unless you're a closet vampire/werewolf (start out as a Chump which happens to be a mispell of Chimp and stay like that as long as you bite!), or a complete jerk who sells his friends to other people (Gifted I think is the name of this app!)
- There are exceptions to the above point and I know of a few of them, but they're so few and far in between that it's hard to pick them out, it's like looking for a kindred spirit in a big bowl of Chumps!
- There's probably no easy method to find good useful apps, unless you know exactly what you're looking for and you have all the patience in the world to find the right kind of people who aren't AppClutterbugs
- If the usefulness of an app is dependent on the person who is using it, then I guess it's alright to fill up your Facebook (yes, that's what I'm calling it, my Facebook) with 200+ apps of which approximately 90.314257% are redundant! "Are my friends like me?" "Are I like me friends?" "Do my friends think like me?" "Do I think I think like my friends think like I think...?" So many ways to ask the same question!
- If you have too many apps, it's easy to install two-different apps that do the same thing. And having too many friends can end up flooding you with Check-out-this-app-that-you-might-have-but-you-can-have-more-than-one-way-to-poke-your-finger-in-my-eye-socket-and-rip-out-contents-you-can-do-it-in-HIndi/English/Hebrew/Zulu/Java/Sumatra/Borneo/Kalilampa/OpenSesame/Moku/Tak Tak/Tic Tic and 300+ more! Now, that's a SUPER Poke! And it comes with a built-in tutor that familiarizes you with these great languages, and some maps that might come in handy, in case you go to one of these places and get lost in them.
I'm tired of Facebook, but it does open up exciting possibilities when you meet people you don't know at all. I use the Scrabulous, Hangman, Twitter and the wall app, and yes, the Chat app for chatting up my frendz. I love the 'Ignore Invites' button! One-clicky goodness.
Made a new frendz yesterday on FB, no less! (yes, that's where we all meet to greet and do the rubabababeet and discuss beetroot and disco beats) We've met/bonded over a complete misunderstanding. And that's why the situation is so much uncanny.
I was chewing the biscuit (tea) with Anna (not Ivanovic! She's cute isn't she?) yesterday, and somehow I started talking about this Pendulum of Hope that we all have in seemingly hopeless situations:
"Well, flowers are nice after a tiring afternoon when you have this
pendulum of hope swinging in your head.
And it eventually stops
swinging and settles in the middle.
Comes to rest."
Hope never dies. Got to keep some for what is left in life. The pendulum will start up again. It's got potential! Maybe FB keeps the pendulum oscillating.
In life, you have these moments, where you know what to say, yet feel as though the words that come out of your mouth next, might not be enough to convey what you want to convey.
I suppose I'm expected by the conventions and rules that have been developed over centuries of human civilization to say:
"I wish you all the best in your endeavours, and I shall see you after the exam, do pray for my good fortune, and health, and I shall do the same for you."
This is what we say when we're trying to establish a symbiosis of sorts, but a very selfish one, at the same time. You do something for me, and I do something for you, though that is not explicitly stated.
But this is not the kind of relationship I want between us, yes?I want us to be open, honest and truthful, the things that are not said, are simply not said, but that does not, however mean that it is not implied.
An open system is fine, but then if we consider the 2nd (or was it the 3rd) thermodynamic principle, any open system will, over a course of time dT go from a state with some X entropy to a state with some X + dX entropy where dX/dT is the rate of entropy increase.
Now, consider the system to be the open relationship that we share. This can be an open system. Entropy now, cannot be directly measured, but it is measured by it's impact on the behaviour of the system.
The lack of appropriate scales to measure the strength or closeness of a relationship between two human beings (possibly the simplest of all relationships if not the most non-trivial) means that we have to subjectively measure (though this is a highly wasted approach!) the Closeness Factor to quantize (so to speak) the closeness in a relationship.
We must consider the standard open relationship and assign it a closeness factor of 10 on a scale from 1-10. The weakest relationship is assigned a value of 1. This does not mean the relationship is broken, but it could be very close to being so.
So, if we plot a graph of the ideal relationship progress, against time, it might look like this:
These charts are referred to as C-Factor Charts.
Note the gradual increase in the ss (stable state) values proves that closeness is a gradually increasing function with no particular maxima.
Reality is often disillusioning as we know:
A Non-ideal Relationship C-Factor Chart
There are no clear maxima and each point's value is prone to varying amounts of statistical fluctuation, which makes it very hard to establish points of stability.
From all this, what is it that we can conclude? Relationships are unpredictable because they are open to external and internal pressures (which incidentally, are manifestations of these external pressures)
A more thorough and researched proof with accompanying literature will be given in a later post.
N. B.: To think that all of this began with an email, that was eventually never sent. Who was the one to receieve it? Perhaps we shall never know.
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Ah, hullo there, and hi hey.
(thank you Sobby, for this classic!)
"What's happened while I've been gone?"
You haven't bene gone really, have you? You've been hanging out online more than usual, but without anything useful to do, like conversing with me.
"But wait, I haven't stopped conversing with you, have I? You've been here all along! I speak to you from time to time, but I don't put up these conversations for the whole world to see."
Ah, you're probably right, but it just doesn't feel like there's any real incentive when you're not letting the world peek at you on the inside.
"That's something many of us don't really have a problem with. We're all ready to show the world what they want to see in us."
What is that supposed to mean? Do you mean, people sort of project an image of themselves onto a big screen for people to see?
"Yes, and -"
And yes, what they want to see is what we project?
"Hm, well, sort of. But we can't generalize, no, no, that would be wrong, there are those among us that want others to see the real 'us' for what we are."
And most of you people have some sort of latent disapproval of themselves, they don't feel content with being themselves, so they mutate and change into something they're not.
"Actually, I have a small bit of geekstuff to put things in perspective.
iamweirdo=upload_youtube(me); coolinternetcelebrity_flag=me; }
Ah, that doesn't make any sense!
"Sure, it does! Just think of yourself as a Hew-man-Goal-of-Ultimate-Satisfaction-compiler, parsing this, you'd probably say to yourself (assuming that you were capable of such a thing, as it were) that this is the way the world was heading and so, you'd just be doing the in-YouTube-thing these days."
But not everybody is on YouTube for reasons as shallow as this. People go there and say things like "Wah, wah, wah, What The Buck!" and walk around all poised and pouting 'coz they've got a crush on certain American presendential candidates!"
Ooh, fiesty, fiesty!
But how odd that she didn't vote for him!
"Don't worry I've done the best I can. Instead of throwing money at her, I've subscribe to her oooh-toob channel."
Ah, this is supposed to be the best web video of 2007. Read the blurbs. Ah, ah, ah.
"Oh, and right, getting back to our discussion, all I'm saying is, people want other people seeing them as perfect. Which as I've reminded you constantly does not exist."
But didn't you change your stance a couple of days ago?
"See, I told you, perfect people don't exist."
Oh, I see what you mean..
So, according to you, everybody wants to be project themselves, a different 'them', and Toob is one way to do that.
"Precisely. Call it the art of being transparently translucent."
Isn't that oxymoronic?
"No, because, if we take a part of ourselves as we'd like to see it, and put it up for people to experience, and get some discussion on what they've experienced, then it validates the attempt. We've gone places. We've gained attention for doing things that we'd not normally do, weren't there any incentive involved."
So, that's what this blog is all about!
And your tweets.
"Don't say nothing at all. Here's something funny I came across now."
I don't see anything special, or odd, or humorous, or remarkable whatsoever. Infact I'd dismiss that with a cold "whateva".
"Come to think of it, neither do I. Whateva! I'm back with a full house today, thanks to return of family from Chennai, that's a good thing, always a good thing. Amma's in for a surprise tonight!"
"Oh yeah. You know what I mean."
"I've got a couple of interesting conversations between me and friends that I recorded some time ago. I'll put them up for download."
That's cool, but please do explain what you guys are talking about. And yes, people will worship you! You rock! they'll say and everything will be good and everything will be wonderful.
"That's the idea."
Trans-pair-and-see, via trans-loose-sense-see.
(violin music floats)
"Deedoy, let's see what she learnt in Chennai."
Hear, you mean?
"And yes, finally what inspired all this."
"Good for your woah-cab dood!"