Kaching In The i

After the DBMS SlugQuaffingLug Fest that's been strectching my digits over the keyboard, I've learnt one thing. Don't stay for too long, else your eyes begin to hurt. So much that I've even reconsidered staying to track the WWDC LiveBlog orgy that's set to begin sometime tonight at around 10 PM IST.

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!
Ah, okay, let's see now. Where were we?
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.

Burnt Milk

Just burned some milk.

The whole house is under a burnt smell siege.

We are weathering it with patience and noseclips.

Migraines and dark visions on the way.

Facebook and The Pendulum of Hope

"Life these days and more importantly, relationships, don't mean much unless
they're validated by your profile and your friend counts on
social networks."

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.
One of my friends is a girl who'd filled up her Facebook profile (what happened to the profile of yore?) with so many apps that it possibly took her profile about 5 minutes to finish telling me what was in there, and that still doesn't mean I got to see all of it! "Loading..." is something you have to get use to with the way these click-Install-this-app crazy clutter their pages!

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.

Discourse No: MOBXCA990N0117883STOSH

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:

An Ideal Relationship C-Factor Chart


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


(click on thumbnail for a bigger image)

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.