Monday, September 15, 2008

Sad to hear

Richard Wright is no more :(. I was hoping he'd perform once more as Floyd (wishful thinking no doubt).
Thanks Richard, you have truly made growing up an experience. Your ideas and songs will remain close forever.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Feeling Young

What a great feeling it must be meet the people we love... only way I can explain - I feel young...
Thanks guys, the SFO trip is leaving a lasting impression already...

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Lord Of The Rings

This has become my favorite trilogy. I have watched it a million times already (all 3 parts) and still in love with it. My obsession to watch it every now and then is driving Nanditaa crazy :D. For someone who loves LOTR so much, she is getting a lil' annoyed when I keep adding the movie back to the Netflix-Q. Not to mention her irritation from my incessant questioning :).

I really wish I had more patience to complete the book. The book is amazing too (have managed to complete half and found a million excuses to be busy), but the movie is probably as close to the book if not better.
Thanks Papa, for giving me something more to love :)

Not all who wander are lost....

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Priceless

Losing the Melbourne test - sad
Losing the Sydney test controversially - anger
Winning the Perth test authoritatively - ecstasy
Drawing the Adelaide test - happy

Repeatedly watching a bunch of Aussies’ cry - PRICELESS
(Note the stress on 'repeatedly' for sadistic satisfaction)

Monday, March 03, 2008

People I Hate

There are two kinds of people I hate working in IT. I loathe their very presence in the room I am in.
The first kind irritate me but its the second kind that absolutely drive me insane.
1) The ones who depend too much on mouse to get their work done. I hate this type. People please don't be in IT if you cannot be comfy with the keyboard. You irritate me.
2) The ones who need a mouse for the laptop. You people don't deserve to be in front of the computer. Please go look for pityless sales job. You are a disgust to the IT world.

I could not bear to keep all the hate within me :D

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Penny Power

The power of the $$ is very well known. It might be fading and struggling to compete now, but people in US surely know what each crisp note is worth. In fact, suprisingly a cent(penny), is still a well accepted notion of money here.

I hate it when something is priced $9.99 and have to accept that 1 cent change. I hate the fact that everytime I buy something "trivial" I end up filling my pocket with a few pennies.
IMHO, penny, nickel and even the dime should no longer be in circulation. The minimum should be a quarter. A quarter is the standard across all the vending machines and stores. I am not rich enough to throw away money, but those small coins are nothing but an annoyance. For once, I wish the VISA ads did really come true.

Anyway this post is not about my rants on the loose change but to point an incident that did convey a lot to me on how at one point (or even now) a single penny was powerful.

This incident has happened twice (with a lot of gap inbetween) and the second time I grasped the significance.

I walked into the bank to get a giftcard. I give all the details to the teller. She patiently walks me through the process of getting a giftcard and also tells me it will cost me four dollars for buying the giftcard. She finally asked me how much money would I like on the card? I was planing to get a card for $250 so I tell her "two-fifty-dollars". On hearing this she had this puzzeled look on her face as if I said something wrong. My immediate thoughts were that I did not have that much money left on my account and she had figured that out. After a moment of silence (while I was pondering what I could have possibly said that dumb), she asks me sheepishly (or rather at my stupidity :D) that if I wanted a card for "two-fifty-dollars" paying four dollars for it. After being reassured that I did not say anything stupid, I said "yes, please". That look on her face came back. I dreaded if I seemed to her like an alien requesting for directions to White house (oh that is another post by itself, have you ever wondered why in all the alien movies its always USoA that gets attacked?). While I was thinking hard on what I could possibly do to take this conversation further and complete my purpose of the visit to the bank, she muttered "don't you think it is a little less to put on the card". Whow! that caught me offgaurd. $250 is less? What has this country come to. I need to slog more than 10 hours (uhhhh) to make that money and she claims that is less! or Am I a cheap gifter? Or was it an unwritten rule that giftcards should be more than a thousand dollars? Ever wondered how the mind and its favorite piper the - "imagination" can work so quickly in tandem? It must have been not more than a second when I responded to her "I think that is a lot of money to be gifting". Aha! she understood and I realized that 'cos she had that reassuring face that tellers always have. She replied you mean "two-hundred-and-fifty-dollars". ZAP!!! I realized what had happened in our less than a minute conversation. Before thinking further I said "yes" and she happily got back to perform the rest of the formality for getting a giftcard(or rather thinking I was another one of those annoying desis with complete lack of understanding american social etiquettes). In the moments that followed my mind and its offsping imagination got back to work. From where I come from "two-fifty" in the usage "two-fifty-rupees" always meant Rs. 250 or "two-hundred-and-fifty-rupees". Rs 2.50 was always pronounced as "two-rupees-fifty-paise". Look at the significance of paise. The lower denomination of a rupee is paise and it plays an important part. I hear a lot many ads on TV that say buy XYZ for "nine-ninety-nine". It is as if the the "cent" or the penny denomination has been become significant. It does not have to be addressed as cents at all. That is the power of the dollar and its denominations in a daily life. I think one part of this vocabulary is that fact that many many things and products that is bought on a regular basis here never really exceeds $100. Of course, the same items will cost a few hundred rupees or yen or whatever lower currency. For "nine-ninety-nine" you might be able to buy a bar of chocolate in India where as for the same money you can file your taxes in USoA.

I am still in awe of the significance of this subtle difference in the usage. Just goes to show the different levels of purchasing power that exists.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Art of inventing

Like Jobs said, it must be really fantastic to be part of three significant inventions in our era! Apple has done it, so has he.
Wonder what it feels like to be at the helm of a company that invents by learning from the mediocrity that is around.



Its nice to see how marketing can actually invent. Very few companies have the platform (people, money and resources) to invent, but only a very few significant companies in this list can market and sell it!.
Now think of a company that first does the market research and then decides to invent to take all the existing crap away. Way to go Apple, I love thy marketing!

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Sunday, April 02, 2006

25

And so! I am forced to surrender all my excuses of age


Jaggi.. I will walk the plank after the brief hiatus in India :D.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Finally!

Almost two years of constant proxying and now finally I am ->
'Akshay Sharma/US-Corporate/3M/US@3M-Corporate'

Friday, February 17, 2006

WTF



Who the heck said greenhouse effect was a problem?

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

A reason for liver damage

O heck!, I want to have my kicks before all that hell breaks loose.
Mini Bar@home (Hunting for 4 bar stools)


Monday, January 16, 2006

Football n all

Sad that Indy (Colts) lost the match and it hurts :(
One team that had an immaculate record the pre season went down to Steelers fighting.
The match which, everyone (including me) predicted Colts would win (as they had done in the preseason against steelers) was a bit shocking to see colts lose. More shocking was the way they lost. The game which was over for Indy long before the end of 4th quarter, turned into one of the closest game with the last 2 minute turnover. Man I wish Manning had made a touchdown then. Nobody to blame but the kicker who missed a sitter (not under this pressure though).
Colts have always been the team I have admired. Offence is what football is all about (I know purists would never agree), but its the long conversions that have always got me interested in football. Well it just goes to show one can never write off the defensive teams (Agree that Big Ben did actually throw some good passes). Indy has been a special team and to wait one more year is not a good feeling.
It takes a while to sink in such emotions. I think I attach myself too much to somethings these days.

With our cricket season far away (May) and no tennis too, the only other substitute was to drink :D. I have started to develop a taste to some exotic wines. Of course Margarita still being my fav drink. Spiced Rum with Grape juice is also great. Blue Jesus, as my roomie will call it for its his invention :D (try this one out).
I bought ice skates. This will be my physical activity for this winter. Since I knew roller skating, picking up ice skating hasn't been very tough. Need to polish the moves. Plan to be regular as there is a rink near by. Hope that the weather stays the way it has been the whole winter (Its been relatively a much warmer winter).

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Give me a Time Out

I need a TO. I need more than 24 hours in a day now. Just look at the crap I have to live through :D

Wednesday - Watch(ed) movie Apaharan. Bad movie.
Thursday - B'day Party
Friday - Party - Season opening of the Poker game at my place
Satruday - Party - Potluck again
Sunday - Party for some friends of roomie (Hope this gets canceled >:))

(Not to mention my long weekend was in Pittsburgh and I had a great time)

I can't take this. I need time for lazing and if I miss my weekend lazing nothing annoys me more. Anytime spent 'usefully' in weekend makes it feel like another weekday. The whole purpose of weekend is to slow down life so that dreams last longer and time just stands still. All the fun in the weekend make the weekdays feel worse. Weekends must be wasted. That is the only way weekdays are productive!
Uffffffffffff, my theories have remained wierd.

To Top all this crap I also have to finish 2 assignments and 1 exam before in the weekend for cPGDBA (actually 4 assignments and 2 exams, as a charitable movement to help my friend who is on a vacation in India).
And all the cleaning up that will be left after 3 nights of extravagenza :((

I need my slumber. Gotto get back to the hibernation.

(Winding up this one else I will be late to the party and miss the good parts :D)

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Don't miss Munich

Another Spielberg masterpiece. Super PERIOD

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Potluck

Today there was a potluck in office. All the whizzos trying to showcase their culinary skills. Who else can I depend on for this than the sweet old Aj? Hes pampered us to bloat like oblix but thats besides the point.

We made beef cutlets (yeah... BEEF). Mallus can't live without it and nowadays even I can't. 'We' is very misleading here. It was Aj all the way. I just shaped a few cutlets before frying. Though, this is not what the firangs think. They think I have done it all the way and he just shaped a few for me.
(Aj being in a diff team, din't get invited to the potluck).
They thought about it so much that one of them wanted me to tell her the recipie. Thankfully I had the presence of mind to say I will mail her. I could have made it up and said something, but I was afraid she would try it out tonight just to be disappointed to find it taste like pale pasta. How can one ever like pasta?

Now, while I sit here relishing those moments of firangs slurping and licking their fingers over the cutlet 'I' made, aj would be busy typing the mail out so that I can send it to her.
Life is easy when you around with right people :)

Friday, December 09, 2005

Good night and Good luck

Good night and good luck is a good movie. I had read some reviews, seen a few promos on the TV and it did not take me long to go for it.
It may be nothing new these days, for the media to sensationalize controversial matters of politics. It was not so back in the 50s, especially just after the world had recovered from the wraths of the WW-II.
The movie is about how a few journalists from CBS cover a senator's actions on communist links. Communism was the biggest threat America saw after the war. Definitely commendable for these bold souls to stand up against a system that wanted to bury a rising.

George Clooney, I think has done an excellent job directing the movie and even better was the acting of David Strathairn as the lead journalist. Flawless dialogue delivery and screenplay.
This is a must watch for anybody with an interest in media.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Mora Saiyan

Starting my friday listening to the melodious number by Fuzon -Mora Saiyan.
Its an interesting discussion at home, on interpretting the meaning of each stanza.
Not sure if this is pure hindustani, or Punjabi or even Rajasthani.
In case you know the whole meaning do let me know...

You can hear the song in dishant.com (search for the artist Fuzon).
You can buy the CD here

The whole song - (I am not sure if this is their original number or a remix)

Saawan Beeto Jaye Pe Harwa
Saawan Beeto Jaye Pe Harwa
Mann Mera Ghabraye
Mann Mera Ghabraye

Aeso Gaye Pardes Piya Tum
Aeso Gaye Pardes Piya Tum
Cheyn Humein nahin Aye
Cheyn Humain nahin Aye

Mora Saiyaan moh sey bolay Na
Mora Saiyaan moh Sey bolay Na
Mein Laakh Jatan Kar Haari
Laakh Jatan Kar Haar Rahi

Mora Saiyyan Moh Say Bolay Na
Mora Saiyyan Moh Say Bolay Na

Tu Jo Nahin to Aisay Piya hum
Tu Jo Nahin To Aisay Piya hum
Jaisay Soona Aanganaa
Jaisay Soona Aanganaa

Nain Tehaari Rah Neeharey
Nain Tehaari Rah Neeharey
Nainnan Ko Tarsaona
Nainnan Ko Tarsaona

Mora Saiyaan moh Say bolay Na
Mora Saiyaan moh Say bolay Na
Mein Laakh Jatan Kar Haari
Laakh Jatan Kar Haar Rahi

Mora Saiyyan Moh Say Bolay Na
Mora Saiyyan Moh Say Bolay Na

Pyar Tumhain Kitna Kartay Hain
Pyar Tumhain Kitna Kartay Hain
Tum Yeh Samajh Nahin Pao gay
Tum Yeh Samajh Nahin Pao gay

Jab Hum Na Hongay to Peharwa
Jab Hum Na Hongay to Peharwa
Bolo Kya Tab Aao gay
Bolo Kya Tab Aao gay

Mora Saiyaan moh Sey Bolay Na
Mora Saiyaan moh Sey Bolay Na
Mein Laakh Jatan Kar Haari
Laakh Jatan Kar Haar Rahi

Friday, October 28, 2005

All in a name

Ah!, I love it when they call me "Mr. Sharma", these firangs. It feels so dignified. I would like it more when I am 30+. Especially, the way they roll their tongue around the 'r'.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Memory bliss

The unforgiven meet





A beautiful weekend in twin cities with good old friends - pumps up my mood for a monday morning.
Guys, it was great meeting up, lets do it often.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Forbes beckons!

http://www.forbes.com/lists/2005/10/06/cz_05200best_toptenslide_2.html?thisSpeed=6000000

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Black 'blues'

Give me a reason to make more money




Sigh! can't stop drooling.

I can't walk past any 2005 mustang parked in the parking lot. This car deserves the long ogle.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Fuelling Satire

I am not a cynic and can never be.
Neverthless, I have always lusted on satire. Of course, it being different from the former.
Among the various literary genres one can take interest into, I have always found Black humor and Satire to be very amusing. Needless to say, most of the writings in these areas have been in short stories and plays.

Black humor generally treads on the darker thoughts and in most cases, leave a bitter taste in the end. Not every story has to have a 'and-so-they-lived-happily-ever-after' ending. The sudden twists and almost an unexpexted ending is what would turn a good story into a great story. One of the very good books I have read is by Roald Dahl - Collected short stories by Roald Dahl. This is a fabulous book to start with. The twists and treats are amazing. There are some of WAR times stories with not much of black humor, but still a very good read. Dahl's subtle twists in the end of the story, is worth the anticipation before. This reminds me of an another author O'Henry. The master himself in the art of twists in the end. O'Henry till this day has the finest short stories, though they wouldn't be classified as Dark Humor.

Satire need not be funny, often digging at social or moral aspects of the subjects. At the same time satire could also be funny - humorous satire. Generally plays or stories of this genre is filled with endless wit and irony. Within the context of the story and sometimes even outside it, all those witty one liners told by the author makes perfect sense.
I took interest in Satire when I started following some famous 'one-liners' by Oscar Wilde. Reading some quotes such as these naturally interested me in Oscar Wilde's works:

Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much
I am not young enough to know everything
Illusion is the first of all pleasures
It is a very sad thing that nowadays there is so little useless information
The only thing to do with good advice is pass it on. It is never any use to oneself


Most of the quotes you would find are embeded in the works of the artist. Very few of them are actually said as one liners and intended that way. They are the extracts of the many plays and stories. Plays from Oscar Wilde are very witty and have quite a bit of irony in them. It also opens the gates to theater and drama. I feel bad that I have missed out a lot not being in Bangalore when that city turned out into the capital of theater. Plays from Oscar Wilde a must read for any satire/play enthusiast. (especially the play - Importance of being earnest).
Another artist, who many would also want to consider as as cynic is Bernard Shaw. Yes, a lot of his writings would be a take on the exisiting political and social conditions of his time. He would expose the negatives and point out the fallacy of the norms at his times. A talented dramatist and an active socialist, his writings have inspired and has been branded with the adjective: Shavian. I have not read many of his works but a colelction called Plays unpleasant has always remained a classic.

It had been a while since I had read anything dark or satiric. Until recently, a normal practice that I have is to follow the quotations on the personalized google home page. I came across some quotes that I had seen often, by an Artist known as Ambrose Bierce. To be honest, I am not an avid reader of many authors, I stick to just a few. Ambrose Bierce as I found out later is an Amercian satirist of early 20th century. His works have been followed and respected by Americans and others. Wonder why I had never heard his name this long. To list a few of his witty quotes here:


Acquaintance, n.: A person whom we know well enough to borrow from, but not well enough to lend to
Cogito cogito ergo cogito sum (I think that I think, therefore I think that I am)
Bore, n.: A person who talks when you wish him to listen
Politeness, n. The most acceptable hypocrisy


If you noticed, many of his quotes are like definitions of words. He authored a book called Devil's Dictionary. It was a collection of some witty definitions of common words in dictionary. Its a very nice bedtime read :). I also bought another of his collection of short stories (which has a few horror stories too).

Fuelling my satire was the best way I could think of heading into the long Minesottan winter. (I still dont know the spelling of Minnesotta.. double n's or double t's there??). The best part about reading such books is that it gives me a different perspective of lot of 'screw-ups' of life.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Friday, September 02, 2005

Pulp fiction...our lives...

Today is the 3rd year completion of my joining this industry...
work is a curse for the fun lot..

here is a mail exchange between my close friends...

Me:
"by the way.. congratz guys for 3 years of work..
feel old and shitty..
how much more to take ? guess longer...
chal bei aj.. lets work for ourselves.. entrepreneur... "

Aj's reply:
"Ya right..
I'm a certified IBM flunk and you took a certification in something nobody wants..
so much for our tech credentials..
abey.. shadi kar.. dahej maang..
ya gori ko pata, phir alimony maang :))
Cant think of any other way to get rich ..."

life moves on...another day of pulp...

Monday, August 22, 2005

Certified junk

is what I have come to be now...
Cleared my sun web services certification...

And one may ask whats the use of this? I'd say, I am now certified and justified to write bad code :-). If sun thinks I am 78% good, hold them responsible for all my sins on code that don't work. (Note: The rest 22% is logging code which has enough grammatical mistakes, but doesn't count :D)

After weeks and weeks of being glued to those hazar books, mostly on the same page though :D, I managed to make some good guesses in the test. Well, one 'good' thing I realized, is no matter how hard I try, I cannot read tech books for than 10 minutes at a stretch. (That beats my previous record of less than 10 minutes though! :D. Call it an improvement) Like I say to myself.. progress is about anticipating whats there on the next page. :P
I still feel bad I had too sacrifice some summer activities for this crap. Anyway, I already feel better about the fact that I don't have to be near a 'tech' book for a while now (hoping).
Yeah..soon my PGDBA would start, heck, at least something different for while!.

Monday, August 08, 2005

A new Fountainhead

And finally after many a days in hibernation, I got my MAC cranking. With a lil' prodding from my dear friend, I also got over my laziness, to network my mac with windows :-). With just an ethernet chord, I have networked MAC mini with my dell. Able to use the wireless of dell to connect to the internet! Really amazing these modern OSs have such powerful networking features. Was successfully able to make both the windows share and mac share see each other. Feel accomplished. Champagne justified with more than one reason now :)

Blazes! working on MAC is an addiction! Sionara my bitter-sweet DELL. Wish they allowed MAC in office. Just one crib... still have to use the annoying mouse most of the times :(... need to learn the mac shortcuts...

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Sultan of swing

Bought an electric 'lead' guitar... Kramer VT Focus.

A good starter kit for people who just dream and never do anything beyond that, about guitars :-). Let me see if this is any different from my previous unsuccessful attempts to make it more than a dream.

Waking up the neighbours these days, hope not to get thrown out or killed by roomie ;).


Sultans of swings Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 15, 2005

Slammin' doors..

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrr...... I am so annoyed when ppl slam the door of my car while getting out of it... Thankfully there are just 2 doors and I close one of them...
Guess have become too possesive :D...

Almost close my ears when someone is getting out of the other door. I can't bear to hear it hit hard. And almost everyone I know does that :D...
I guess I may be doing the same when I get into other's car...

Unknowing sins can be forgiven :-), but its so much of a trauma when you know whats coming down hard...

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Kiss from the caves and the funnel

Saturday was meant for adventure. Hadn't even ventured out for a while, forget the adventure part of it.

Decided to visit Crystal caves in wisonsin. It is a 60 million year old cave, with rich deposits of crystals like quartz, flint etc. This place was found 120 years ago and the geologists feel that the cave is much bigger than as it is today and would have to be explored. The maximum depth of the cave as of today is just 72 feet. The cave (a cavity) is as such made of rock being eaten away by water containing carbonate. There were many stalactites, stalagmites, helectites blah blah blah everywhere. The place is like 50 mi from my place and it was a pleasure to drive my eclipse with all windows and sunroof open in the plush green wisonsin country :).

(Right click - View image if it did not load)






The best part of the whole trip, was something that happened while driving back. We noticed a cloud that was behaving wierd. It was frequently changing shapes and after a while it almost assumed the shape of a funnel. It was a toronado in the making. I immediately pulled over and started taking snaps. I have always dreamt of chasing a toronado. Din't get any in Texas. Minesotta/Wisconsin is not known much of get these twisters but this was a good ocassion to watch one. The thing was probably 20-30 miles away from us and was headed across the horizon (not approaching us). It was almost a standstill with people coming out with their cameras and shooting. I too was able to take a few snaps and recorded a video of it. Almost had my mind in going the direction the twister was headed ;).

It was a small tryst with nature.





Watched Parineeta. A nice movie. Really liked the way Vidya Balan has acted. Her facial expressions are amazing. Saif was nice too. The movie probably lacked good dialogues but otherwise a good one. Its surely not a drag.
Also watched Mr and Mrs Smith. Boring. Angelina Jolie was good to ogle at. Another stereotype.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Rising from the ashes

Well not really!... I was almost burnt to ashes in the heat of Phoenix. For an average 'Minesottan' anything beyond 70F is boiling point. At 100F its roasting alive.

This trip was more than just one of those mundane trips. Having procrastinated and lazed for a year, giving absurd reasons everytime to mom, grandmom and every one @ Phoenix, I finally did it. I am sure I must have made my mom happy as much as I did my grandmom and the rest. Though in the end, looked like I was the happiest. Family was something I have missed for a while and felt really good and @ home at my uncle's place. Infact got to know about my family tree (Mandyam iyengars). Not that I care much for these stuff, but something to learn. Sometimes feels nice to be a part of such wonderful family. Being pampered by granny and the rest is a very comforting feeling :), had been a long time since I got that.

Spent a lot of time talking about our lives in general and personally. Got to know so much about how life is for the indian american citizens and their views/opinions on marriages etc... (ABCDs too, that 'C' is not justified there I think).

Watched a movie called 'Crash'. Really well done. Its about how circumstances drive a person to be racist (everyone in the movie is like a racist) and how each of them crash at some point in their lives with others. Set in LA, this movie is a sure no-miss for anyone. I guess ppl in LA and one of those coastal town can relate much better. Food for thought.

Back to life in the fast lane...

Friday, May 20, 2005

Pretty diguise!

In the meeting today,
this beautiful 'lady' (notice respect in the word :D) walks in.. We were supposed to discuss about the issues in the project. She is an Analyst. For a moment I forgot all the issues that we were to discuss. Don't get me wrong, I am just appreciating the beauty here. Something very charming about her ;-). That bubbling radiance...

In the small space of time that we introduced each other, a million thoughts processed in my mind. Was she married? Was she single (the american way!)? I am sure I must have scanned her hand for a ring (can't help, just being a guy here :D) and most importantly how old could she be.

To calculate this last part, the thought process that went through my mind -
Here, in my client company to be analyst, a person should have atleast 6 years of XP. She looked young, so I presumed she must have recently become an analyst. Generally ppl here in US graduate late. The promotion cycles are slow. Taking into all these factors and most importantly the appearance I put my finger at the numbers 29-30. That number feels old for a lot many of us, but doesn't really matter when one looks as good as her! (I know, by american standards 30 is a perfectly acceptable age to be called a 'chick'). But honestly, I don't know why I was looking for her age!. Is it another sense that the mind needs to sense? I guess...

And as the meeting progressed, I had no choice but to be serious about work :D. But then, sometimes work can get a lot more interesting with such good 'forethoughts' :D. (Again, a boyz thingie ... lot of you ladies wont probably get it!).

Later in the day, as I came to know of her age, which read 40, I can't but be pleasantly surprised. How can one look good at that age? Yes, she must be really working out to look good. Working out helps so much to be physically attractive too.
A lot many of them attribute it to the genes, but somehow that is not very convincing. I see the extremes here.

Feel like creating a lot more issues just to have many more meetings >:)

Sunday, May 01, 2005

High!

Thanks to the screw-ups in life,
now there is a reason to drink Chivas Regal.
Drown the sorrow with every sip of small size,
until those things just don't mean to be real.
Smoothest scotch with rocks of ice,
my spirit soaring high in the crying yell.

- Amen

Thanks Aj, for getting me 'high' on Chivas Regal.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Are they from another planet!?

I get a complex whenever I compare my web applications with that of google. (I know there is no comparison here, but who the heck thinks so creatively there??)

Simple things like these gives me the depressing feeling of what I don't know and at the same time inpires me that there are things beyond the grasp. Mind you, these are things that an end user of google may never appreciate or realize, but as a developer I see perfection in them...

1) Have implemented a file upload component that transmits a file as a multi-part request to the server. Now if you look at any email website (including Yahoo!) the page to attach file would be either as pop-up (not a good idea) or in a seperate page. This would typically do a server submit once the file is uploaded and sends off the file to the server as a multipart request. If you have observed google, their file attachment is in the same page as mail page and there is no need for a server hit to upload file. Basically the file will be sent to the server along with the normal email (sent as SMTP). We are aware of a problem in clubbing Multi-part request with normal request where the data sent in double byte charset (asian languages) will be generally mangled up. This is one area that is not very clear for many of us developers as there is not much documentation on this. I know there is a solution, but somebody in Google out there already knows all these very well! Apparently our component still works the same way like the one by yahoo etc.
Ofcourse I tried to look at the code by google and as clever as they are most of their coding in javascripting and conviniently very tough to understand. Http is a simple protocol and apparently google has found fantastic tweaks around!

2) Check out the http://www.google.com/webhp?complete=1&hl=en
Another place to make me feel I know nothing. This does a predictive typing for whatever the end user is typing. It brings a drop down with all the possible combinations (like history of the browser cache). Ofcourse my concern is not how Google is able to get those predictable text (that is beyond my comprehension.. at the moment) but how the heck do they load that dropdown??? Either that has to be done in javascripting with some intelligent DIV tags. This would mean there would be an enormous objects stored somewhere in javascript with all the possible combinations of searching!!!! This is not true since the page size reveals otherwise. Mind you it is not even a server hit. Goadmn..what the heck have they invented here!????

3) Another one....back to gmail. How many of us use the spell check? Not me.. 'cause I dont care about my spellings, and moreover most of the personal mails will be interspersed with more than one language.. Anyway the point is this.. when you go to the spell check page, it would highlight all those words in the mail body with spelling mistakes. The best part is when you click the highlighted text it opens a dropdown with the suggestions. When you choose one it changes it to the selected thing. Again no server hit. Its all blooooooooody client (Browser) coding.. Now imagine this.. how words do we all know? As much as the oxford dictionary would say.. and that would be like mllions of it.. Google is able to offer suggestions on the client side with more than one possible value! One thing to notice here, a click from edit mesasge mode to check spelling mode is again not a server hit.. but has some scripting. But heck it is all still too fast.
Serioulsy I am baffled at their expertise on web. Yahoo! has lightyears to travel :D

There are so many other features in google for which I have no answers. They are a world apart!
While we waste time learning stuff like object orientation, patterns, process (shit like XP, RUP..), standards and other crap, there are ppl out there who have touched perfection.
Just realizing how infinitesimaly small my knowledge is!

Monday, April 11, 2005

The signs of summer

Simple signs of summer :) -

1) Three bandages, one each on the finger, elbow and knee.
2) Sprained back and neck, cramped legs but a good sleep at the end of the day
3) Body stinks of chlorine
4) Short hair; no need to comb ever
5) 'Timpass' redefined - No more discussions about 'chicks'. All senteces essentially have the following keywords - tennis/cricket/football/racing/(ok.. chicks are still there ;-) )
6) Unable to concentrate on work after 4 pm. The only thing that constantly repeats in the mind is to rush to the courts before they are occupied.
7) Infinite discussion/strategies on winning a game and never follow them :D

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Out of my mind and into your's

Bought the book 'Inside Out' by Nick Mason ->



http://pinkfloyd.co.uk/insideOut/

A must have for any floyd fan. Its embellished with colourful snapshots of floyidian past. Was really impressed at the look and feel of it. As ever Storm Thorgerson has done a fabulous job. It has all the aesthetics, pulse, psychedelia and architectural genius of the legend. More than anything it is an account narrated by Nick, who apparently is the drummer of Floyd. The accounts and incidents can't be more accurate :). Will treasure this one.

Have also bought Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged. Left the older copies in Bangalore (which I don't know when, I ll ever get to live in). Felt like reading them again. Something to feed my ego and pride a life. Fountainhead is making more sense everytime I, re-read a paragraph. Plan to complete both of them in couple of weeks (hopefully). Nobody but Miss Rand has ever sketched characters in such detail and accuracy. Have always wondered, why most of us live a secret life! That no doubt includes me. I want to be fearless. Things that don't matter just shouldn't matter.

Have a stupid 'portal and portlet' development training this weekend. Wonder why there is such a mass movement now towards that technology, even when it is so unstable! And trust IBM to make it worse with their own ideas! For god's sake can't they just make products that adheres to JSR specs. Like my colleague said, everybody needs a job :D! Saturday gone.

Ahoy, navigator! got a meeting at 11! get back to work...

Thursday, March 31, 2005

A feeling is so much stronger than a thought

I have bought a lot of music, iTunes, is the best place to buy music from :) (Yup, am a total apple addict).
I listen to music most of the time, even while doing some intense coding. That is something I have got used to so much now!. One thing I will not be able to stand is peace and quiet! Whats life without a riot?

Anyway, the point of this blog is something else. I hear a lot of music on the online radio. Again, using iTunes :)). My fav channel ofcourse is Virgin Radio UK, simply because its a brit channel and for the overdose of my love for them. Then while the radio plays these million different songs, I shoot up in excitement the moment there is a favorite song of mine being played. Now, I have that same fav song of mine, sitting right on this hard disk, which I would have heard just a couple of minutes before. Then still, the excitement that is generated hearing to that song on the radio is indescribable!. I just go through it.

Strange why I feel the bliss when the unexpected happens? Or is it that I expect the song unknowingly and feel the euphoria when it is played? Why dont I get the same of happiness when I play the song from my collection?
Is it in random occurences, I find jubilation? What would life have been, if it was all known? So mundane! Glad that there is so much uncertainity.
Is it just me who feels this, or is there anybody out there?
Another thing about feelings,
'the anticipation of something is the best part of the whole episode'. I mean, the best part of acquiring something is the part when I have to wait for it, when I have to do all the planning, whenI dream about it, when I make the impulsive decisions of getting it and all this just somehow disappears when I get it. It just becomes another something of me that I lose interest in.
Am I wierd?! I wish I do sound, at least :D. And do you feel the same?

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Ah! Its 'MAC'nificient




Got my MAC mini... Its like the Rolls-Royce of computers, not necessarily price wise.
Bought a 17'' Sony Flat pannel display.. A whopping $475 (mac mini costed $500)
Good friends presented the JBL Creature speakers :))
Of course had to buy the Apple keyboard and mouse. Can't think of using some junk stuff with Class ;)

Next few days -> MAC programming. Explore some cool tools in MAC.

Ugly kid Joe

And how repelling am I??
A whole lot and this much more :D ->



Tuesday, March 15, 2005

A prisoner's dream...

There is a rush in my head, of blood flowing right to the brain when I repeat it to myself. Its not a fear but the lust for bravery. I have no proof against when it can happen. I would have to just surrender to the opression if any. Alas! those mere mortals aren't aware of my dilemma and abuse my lack of evidence. Sometimes I wish they did just that. I would get a chance to feel just what it is like to be in prison!.
Being a cult follower of Shawshank Redemption would make me one of those who want to experience the solitary confinement and prison life and then find my freedom back. Of course not for as long as in the movies. I have my chance, but not the heart to do it. Spend a few nights among the criminals and suffer from stockholm syndrome and be a perennial visitor. A life bought for such fantasies. I picture myself as an escape artist from Alcatraz? Not even the dreaded sea could hold me back. I am gone....

Before this blog heads to my darker side, I would put my imagination to a halt to reveal that I am just 'blah'ing about my stint as an illegal alien :D. March 3rd - Visa expired and so did I-94. Company filed for I-94 extension. Got the I-94 extension approval, but no proof of it! I still haven't received the extension letter from Cogni. And in the last few days I have fantasized my small stint in the darkest prison just to break free like Henry Chererie did in Papillion.

Ah! well not that I have paid the price for my imagination... Not allowed to travel anywhere, Cannot buy my car, or even get my licence :((. Who needs 'em when I have sealed myself in the prison walls??

Friday, March 11, 2005

Someday, somewhere in Britain...

Ye ye ye.. spoke to my first British client...
Damn I wish I was in lundun..
Love their accent, love their style..
I guess I was speaking to him in brit accent. I can't resist that... must have sounded like a fool to him! A desi sitting in Saint Paul, speaking like a brit... (laughter for his weekend supper :D). heck who cares.. its my choice to sound anything I like.

Just controlled myself from speaking about foorball. I know he would be the happiest man tonight had I talked to him about Chelsea's fantastic victory over Barca to enter into champions league. He would be in disbelief that a desi-us talks about football... it was tough controlling that urge.. somehow managed to!

When am I ever get to be in Britain? Ah, some dreams are better when they take their own sweet time ... I'll wait..


Current Music - Killer Queen - Queen

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

MACnetic

Have been seriously considering buying a MAC Mini. Pretty impressed by it. Checked up the specs and other stuff. I know it finally comes down to just owning one for the collector's sake but there are some cool stuff to work on. I am just rearing take up Java on Mac, as there are some interesting tools to work with for Java. If I ever find time for all this :D.

A Mac Mini is $500 and I would say not too expensive. The Apple keyboard and a mouse costs $60. The creature speakers costs $150. But the thing that costs most and the one that is delaying my decision is the Flat LCD monitor. Any good one (Sony, NEC..) cost no less than $300. The total comes to more than $1000. I can buy a cheapest iMac for that. I dont want another laptop though, and Mac Mini is all about passion. How much good use do I put my current laptop to anyway? DELL sucks big time.. but MAC is all about unparalleled creativity.

A lil confused as I am planning to buy a car sometime in the next 2 months. (Gone are the dreams to buy a sports car :(... will heed to it later). Will do some more googling over the weekend. Hope to get my Apple pie soon...

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Nouvelle génération

I was speaking to my 14 yr cousin today. I was really impressed in the way she talked to me. Seemed to be very mature. The new generation doesn't seem to be losing out on that aspect as some say. It is very nice to see many of the youngsters know what they want in life so early. That is something I haven't been able to decide yet.

The one thing that really mesmerized me was the fact that she did acknowledge that I have no idea of how much her generation has advanced. She was cognizant about the differences. I felt a little old at almost 24.

Will we(our generation) be prejudiced with the later generations like the earlier ones have been to us? tick tick tick...

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Wierdo from the same planet

is what I am.

Decided to look ugly. Not too difficult for me, just have to stand in front of the mirror. But still, want to look uglier :D.

Its like 'Uglier than thou, I am' - an attitude.

Decided to keep a mustache! (i hear the yuck yucks)
Look older, look funnier, look crazier and more than anything look uglier. But, hey look at the positives, I have to shave a lil' less :D

Enough of self deprecating humor, it is more due to the reason that I am just bored of the mundane stuff. I have always wanted to keep a french beard, but I dont have that french connection.
Then there are these whims of keeping a drooping, curling mustache like the rock stars.
Right now it looks like a faint black caterpiller on the stiff upper lip :D (are there black caterpiller? Well imagine one if not)

Lets see how many get that feeling of wanting to hate me.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Return to innocence

I have decided to listen to Kannada songs.

A million and one reasons have culminated to make me go back to my roots.
More than those million earlier reasons its that last 'one'th resaon, which
I cannot put down in words but just emote, shall give me a new interest in life.

Yup, struggling a lil' searching for some good songs :D. Starting from scratch is so tough.
I will bug the almost invisible 'diggi' company I have, to get hold of some good songs.

Memories come rushing upto meet me now, of my childhood with granny where weekends
were filled with kannada movies :).

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Water Water everywhere, took so long to drink

Floating down through the clouds
memories come rushing up to meet me now
in the space between the heavens
and in the corner of some foreign field
i had a dream
...
- Roger Waters

Wow!, thats genius and so much more to unearth still from all the floyd songs.
PF is a religion to live by, just can't get enough of them. I discover so much daily in their style. Runs and re-runs of song, never ending and never boring.
Been a big fan of David Gilmour among the fab four for his voice and him being the musical architect behind most of the floyd songs.
Waters always gave that melancholic touch to floyd, something that made them so distinct. Songs were not the usual material stuff like the modern rockers. It was a cut above the rest.

I had somehow convinced myself that Waters was not worth all the fame he is given, maybe just becuase he and Gilmour never got together. After keenly listening to some of his creations its just genius at work. I have decided to listen to all the songs of floyd, now with Waters perspective on things.

I have always said to myself 'The final cut' must be the most boring album by floyd. That was until I heard it again from www.pinkfloyd.co.uk
Now I just can't get enough of it. That site is a must visit site for any floyd fan. The official site too. The echoes album doesn't seem to be working any longer but still there is enough to get lost there in the meories of a fantastic band.

.....
and if i show you my dark side
will you still hold me tonight
and if i open my heart to you
and show you my weak side
what would you do

Shine on you crazy diamond.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

'Brand' Wagon

Ever wondered what it takes to make a good thing great??
I read up last week that Apple displaced Google as the top brand.

I am impressed.
iPod, MaC mini, i Mac, iTunes and so many more products in their pandora's box, Apple has been pretty creative in its product lining.

I mean look at it, I have bought already gazillion songs from iTunes and burnt so many CDs. Even though I know the default apple format 'AAC' is not compatible with any other player, I still buy it from iTunes. Of course the way out is to rip off a CD and copy it using the windows media player. (I have failed using other conversion techniques). The point is marketing one's product even with all the odds against one and still be the best. I liked the way apple introduced shuffle. It is so inciting to buy one. Its the idea of selling something as simple as 'random'. Introduce an element of uncertainity to a product and price it competitively and there are people out there who wants it. Then the U2 gig. Wow and a whole new iPod with U2 customization on it. Why wouldn't I want one?? Oh! not to forget the way Mac mini is being aggresively marketed. I have already visited Apple.com a million times checking up the specs of Mac. The only reason I still don't own a Mac mini is I don't have a monitor. Not its incompatible platform to the modern software. Soon they will catch up. Its really amusing the way Steve Jobs and Co. come up with ideas.
Just a deserving company replaced another pioneer of branding. How long? Let the brand war begin.

Slowly what dawns upon is that its the marketing creativity. Can you sell an neat product? Can you innovate a bad product to a better one and make it look great? If one has ever had a look at the american advertizing and media, its so easy to recognize what is being sold. Its a brand not the thing. I just love the ads, not 'cause most of them are fake, but ''cause there are people believing in it. Including yours truly :D.

Can we improvise our work with this formula? Selling an idea is more tougher than having one! Edward d' Bono SOS!!

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Hackneyed

It doesn't look the same it was supposed to be.
Times were to get better. It was supposed to be just those three weeks, I was supposed to be busy. Even though those three painful weeks quite ruined some new year exrtavagaza, I never griped about it.

Expected the bliss to start again, but then it was just the blizzard. The sudden change in the team structure and releasing of two vital resources have just left the remaining two of us more dazed and crunched for time. Too much responsibility, offshore calls, design meetings, reviews, have to start learning potlet and portal applications, RnD coordination et cetera...
Heck don't want to make this my cribbing board, have done enough of it on ppl :D. But then managing is in what comes experience... I am realigning some opinions on this, lets c..

This week in minneapolis was FANTASTIC. Just weather wise. Its in upper 40's F. Thats like summer already!!. Dint have to wear the winter jacket at all..
Snow was melting on the ground,
In air I heard the whispers sound.
It was time to get ready for the cricket season. The days are getting longer... more sunlight... I see azure skies!!! not just white.. oh now I know why summer means everything..April waiting for you...

Another bad night at poker... think will take a break... Lost $45 (Personal Record :D)

Finished Da Vinci code in the spare time i had. Good read.. fast and page turning... Don't like thrillers too much, but can take this as an exception. Bought another O'Henry short stories...quite a lot of them I haven't read before.. shall find some time soon.

Formula 1 this season will be spectacular... thats my predictions ...
Looking forward to the battle between Montoya and Kimi...sad cannot watch the races :(. I am going to indy in June. Come what may.. not missing the US GP like last time...

Have to get hitched to Basketball... last year was good.. I like T-Wolves... but this year they are dismal as they can be... will go watch some games sometime..

Looking forward to meet dumms next week :)

Saturday, January 22, 2005

The ordeal in the lake

It was another boring terribly cold saturday afternoon. Something had to be done to shake
us up. Then the roomie comes up with the plan of taking a drive over one of the frozen lake.

Lakes freeze here in Minesotta and we are allowed to take our vehicles at our own risk to
drive on them. It is a lot of fun the main reason being we can do a lot of skids and turns on ice.
Its the lack of control of the car that is the thrill. Accelerate and brake and the let there be
chaos. That is the funda behind it. The physics of sliding and rolling frictions are weak and
the car just does zig zag. The more experienced drivers try out the 'doughnuts' and the '8s'.
All in all it was supposed to be an afternoon to remember.

With our modest VW Passat, we headed in the bitter cold (actually it was warm for the average Minesottan) with our protective gears. The previous day there was a snow storm and it had dumped more than a feet of snow. It was sight to see so much white everywhere. The snow was
soft and the good kind of snow. Wanted to play calvin, but just held that game for a while back.

We spotted a good lake, and like bravados went to the tip of the lake. Suddenly the three of us got a feeling, that it was lil warm (9 degrees F) and that there was a chance that the top layer of the lake might have defrozen! A fear ran amock. We stopped at the tip, got out of the car and surveyed. We could not find any car going over the lake. We spotted just one another truck at the tip of the lake but on the other side. There were tyre marks in the snow of lake indicating that cars/trucks had been on the lake. We stepped onto the lake and found it hard as asphalt! What nicompoops we had been in thinking a lake could melt!. Its still Minesotta, the ice cube of america :D.

With the new found courage and a mission to fun, we headed in the 2 wheel drive passat into the lake. We chose the path that had already been chosen by some previous car earlier, since that made it easy to navigate to the center of the lake with ease. A few yards into the lake with the huge amount of snow from the previous day's snow storm, we realised we were in danger. Not in the danger of lake melting anymore but in the danger that our car could get stuck in the snow anywhere!!

Now to be honest, this was not a threatening feeling. We thought that we will somehow we can get away if anything like that happens. And so wrong were we. We managed to drive to the center of the length of the lake along the coast. We saw the other truck that was parked and thought that it probably was the one that had created the tyre marks. We were about to turn to do some stunts and the car came to a halt. It was a clear tyre spin. Both the front wheels where the drive is applied were spinning in a pile of snow.
We thought that it was fun and could away by backing up. To our dismay it did not. We tried pushing, pulling, accelerating hard and to our disbelief the car din't move an inch! All three of us were out of the car trying to clear the snow and by then the cold was getting to us. It just numbs you at the face. I have seen colder days but when coupled with deperation even a relatively warmer day feels life threatening!!

Luckily for us we were near that other truck which, happened to be 4x4 Dodge - hemi powered. The owner chap was ice fishing in a small cabana. Having realised it was a SOS situation we had to seek his help. The man was friendly and ready to help. He helped towing the passat out of the muck of snow. We were thankful that we did not venture deep into the center of the lake itself, but just on the shore. Else it would have been ditch the car, run to the shore and call for help :D.

No more lakes when it snows without a 4x4 truck :).