Friday, December 29, 2006

Robot Bhangra

(Thanks RG)

And now, Ladies and Gentlemen, we have robots dancing Bhangra

That is just frigging awesome ! For some reason, all I'm thinking of now is how the CG moves and the bot stays balanced as it does that somersault.. just analysing it on paper is a daunting task, let alone actually getting it to work! Gyad wonly :-)

Friday, December 22, 2006

Van Eck Phreaking

(Thanks Pota for the novel and the video )

I am just finishing up with Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon (don't bother trying to read an e-book version, its some 1000 odd pages). The novel is really nice, but the nicest part of it was Van Eck phreaking. On any CRT monitor, the electron beam is moved around by coils which produce an electromagnetic field. Now, for the coils to 'direct' the beam, the current supplied to them should vary in time in such a way that the effect of the coils' magnetic fields deflects the beam to where it is required. Voila! Currents changing in a conductor automatically mean electromagnetic waves being transmitted into space. You might not think these are strong enough to be picked up, and neither did I till The Pota fished out a youtube video, showing it happening ! The wiki article points at one with a more... practical bent, of compromising electronic voting machines !

Ah, I can imagine Mr. Van Eck ( or the TEMPEST fellows) on a lazy afternoon, gazing into the blue sky, thinking about that inordinate din the TV was making, and FLASH ! Coils, changing currents, phreaking !! Phew, awesome !

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

What the stock!

I was reading the wiki article about the Tokyo Stock Exchange, and came across this paragraph:

During the initial public offering of J-Com on December 8, 2005, an employee at Mizuho Securities Co., Ltd. mistakenly typed an order to sell 610,000 shares at 1 yen, instead of an order to sell 1 share at 610,000 yen. Mizuho failed to catch the error; the Tokyo Stock Exchange initially blocked attempts to cancel the order, resulting in a net loss of 347 million US dollars to be shared between the exchange and Mizuho. Both companies are now trying to deal with their troubles: lack of error checking, lack of safeguards, lack of reliability, lack of transparency, lack of testing, loss of confidence, and loss of profits. On 11 December, the TSE acknowledged that its system was at fault in the Mizuho trade. On 21 December, Takuo Tsurushima, chief executive of the TSE, and two other senior executives resigned over the Mizuho affair.

What the! I can perfectly imagine the scene in front my eyes: there's this dialog box with two text fields, the employee enters the details, and clicks 'OK'. A confirmation box pops up, for probably the 18,000th time that day. No patience to even click, his right pinky hits the Enter key, and whoooooooooosh! 347 million dollars, and three top executives go right off the cliff. And if you really think about it, there is nothing anyone could have/can do about it. Selling 610,000 shares at 1 Yen is a very probable transaction, and so is 1 share at 610,000 yen, so no 'common sense' software check could have caught it. Confirmation dialogs are useless in such high volume work, we all know that. From the side of the employee, it simply is an error that can't be avoided!

Nai had some things to say about this during Shaastra Main Quiz, as these kinds of errors being related to Freudian Slips. I too have been searching high and low for research on 'casual' or 'silly' mistakes that are so common in numericals, but haven't been too successful. At their best, these casual mistakes affect performance assessment (in my experience) by about 5% , and at their worst, render the assessment meaningless (a mistake in CAT, for example).

Is these something 'behind' casual mistakes, something more that 'silly errors' or 'it happens'? I'm trying to design a survey form, and send it by mail to everyone in the insti, and try to get some statistics about it. If you know of any such survey being conducted before, or have some suggestions for the form, please do let me know!

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Best tribute to Milton Friedman

Found this on 2x3x7 via India Uncut :

If there is a heaven, Friedman is probably up there right now, convincing God that the best thing he can do for the rest of us is to leave us alone.



Dear, Dear me, what a sublimely spirtual message this is to the Youth of the Nation..Hallelujah, orkut be praised !

wll u b my frndshp partnre in orkut? i am nice boy, well setld and hapy studing in colej, u look nise wid cap, we hapy as frnds, have fun togetr. u scrp me, i crp u too, v mesg and share secretes about grlfrnds and boyfrnds and many frnds of all typs. u say u will mary i wll b frnd 2 hlp u 4 mony trubles and bride trubles and moter inlaw trubles. u n i wll hat u r moterinlaw wen i com. gud frnds v r. i wll hlp evn wen u slap me wen i luk at ur wif. evn ur wif's frnd i wll b. v wll b hapy togetr. but b my frnd. PLSS!

Phew, "many frnds of all typs", I'm laughing so hard my stomach hurts !

Monday, December 04, 2006

SIGGRAPH is God, too. I'm going Pantheistic!

(Thanks a ton, Adarsh!)

Guess where this pic is from :

A saturday morning cartoon ? Some Russian CG expert with loads of time on his hands? Caps from a movie, perhaps?

Ok, how about this:

(I can't think of any way of demonstrating how excited I am; Caps, bold, italic, underline, blink are all for lesser occasions. This one is way beyond their league, so I'm just going to say it plain.)

These pics are from a SIGGRAPH paper that describes a method to dynamically calculate deformations in sets of tens of objects! Yes, thats right, there is only one 'non-rigid' shoe and one 'rigid' die that is modelled, a simple config file tells the inital position of each shoe, and the algorithm calculates the deformation dynamically, and gives the coordinate by oordinate output!

Anyone who's done a course on Strength of Materials will easily realise this is a TREMENDOUS achievement! To calculate strains in a simple block with a hole in it is a dauntingly challenging task, and here are these guys, with a method to crush duckies (elastic duckies, so they bounce back up) and pile shoes on dice!! Simply put, AMAZING!!!!

(Maybe I should spend more time writing up a more detailed post on why exactly this is earth-shakingly brillaint, but I just had to put this up the moment I saw it :-) )

Purposeless Note 1: Blogger's HTML is pathetic. I fart in your general direction, you overpaid overrelaxed Google codemonkeys !

Purposeless Note 1.5: That phrase is what started a GTalk conversation between Adarsh and me, which finally led to this.

Purposeless Note 2: I should stop watching Monty Python for a while.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

TED Talks

(Thanks Pota)

TEDTalks are these set of brilliant lectures, sponsored by BMW,  covering a very wide range of topics. I happened to watch two of them, and I'm totally stunned.

The first one, "The Paradox of Choice" by Barry Schwartz, is about how too much choice is choking us. It makes for extremely interesting viewing, and the fishbowl metaphor at the end really set me thinking.

Another one, "Myths about the Developing World", is a perfect case study of how a normally very boring topic can be made remarkably interesting, by presenting it in a thoughtful way. It does provide info about its subject matter, the demographies of developing countries, but the insights it gives into how data should be presented are far more valuable, imho. contains a lot more of these; You'll probably find most of them on Google Video, in case that site proves too slow.

More Genius!!

Remember that link to a paper I gave in the 'nice comments' part of the previous post?

I followed that link and read that paper, and my God, it is AWESOME! All that the guy had in front of him was 5 obscure lines of code and a befuddling 'magic' constant, and he sat on it, worked it out, and using simple calculus and error analysis that anyone can understand, got back the constant that was used, and whats more, he suggested a better value for the constant with proof. Do read the paper !!!!

Whoa, what a morning it has been !

Friday, December 01, 2006

Pseud-est piece of code I've seen

 This . piece . of . code . is . GOD.

What does it do ? It calculates 1/sqrt(x). Um, why? Because in any graphics application, one of the most common operations is to normalize a vector. If this peice of code can improve performance by 10%, it will cause a colossal net performance increase, since there are thousands of normalization ops taking place for each frame! Ok, so this is from? The Quake 3 source code !!

Rejoice, my brethren, Real Programmers still walk the Earth !

Update: People, here is absolute proof that Slashdot, too, is God. These comments just made my day !

(x^(1/2))^2 != 1

Interesting smiley... is that a dead man with a fraction in his mouth and a prominent Adam's Apple, wearing a bow tie and a dress and standing on a toy race car?

What's your point, man?

An extremely detailed description on how it works.

"The real genius here is Isaac Newton. 'course, that's not news to anyone."

You mean that Newton thought about taking advantage of the IEEE float format to initialize the algorithm using "i = 0x5f3759df - (i>>1);"? Wow, now that's a clever guy!

What a reply !

I have a truly marvelous proof of who wrote this code which this comment box is too narrow to contain.

ROFLMAO :D !!!!!! lolz even !!!

The linked site seems to be down (gee, you think it might be slashdotted?), but this paper [] seems to be covering the same topic

Do read the paper, might be interesting it is AMAZING! VERY CLEAR! .

6. "It was fast" #17070808 .php?section=ffi&page=sqrt []

And before you know it, someone found a comparative study :P

Aha! A link to HAKMEM !

And finally,

8. #17071866

Look son, crazy people...


Sunday, November 26, 2006


"What", the good Prof asked, "is the shape number of a 6 staged water pump with blah blah blah characteristics ?". Only a blessed few of the masses writing the exam today had a vague idea of what a pump is, let alone any notion of a 6 staged monster. What, then, does an enterprising young engineer do?

Divide the shape number calculated using the characteristics of the whole pump by 6, of course! Why ? Because thats the only place you can use that 6, stupid !

Skinner & Flanegan would have been proud.

(Oh, and while I was googling for the exact name of that constant, I came across this site with stuff for quite a few good laughs. Here's a sample:

After the Flood, Noah lets all the animals out of the ark and tells them to go forth and multiply. A few months later, all are doing fine except a pair of snakes. The snakes beg Noah to cut down some trees and let them live there. Soon, there are lots of little snakes and everybody is happy. "How did the trees help?", wonders Noah. "Well, we're adders. We need logs to multiply."


Subtlest Joke in a Textbook award

Here's a problem (8.32, Deflections in Bending) I remembered from "An Introduction to the Mechanics of Solids" by Crandall & Dahl. A most wonderful book, and the authors have a sense of humour to boot. Given that the first edition of this book was in 1959, and that this problem is rather basic, chances are that this was one of the first textbooks to carry this joke :-)

The signpost reads "Plan Ahead". ROFL!!

Saturday, November 25, 2006

You'll never guess who said this

A lunatic escapes from an asylum, and starts running away. He comes across a riverbank and a few washerwomen, and sli puts with them, and runs off again. The headlines next day:

"Nut Screws Washers And Bolts"


Thursday, November 23, 2006

IC Engines

Today's IC Engines paper was somewhat like this:

A ball held one meter above the ground in an open field. There is no obstruction between the ball and the ground. It is released.

Given that Planck's constant is 6.626 0693(11) × 10-34 J·s. , the conductance quantum is 7.748 091 733(26) × 10-5 S, the Fermi coupling constant is 1.166 39(1) × 10-5 GeV-2, that the Nyquist-Shannon sampling theorem states that "The condition for exact reconstructability from samples at a uniform sampling rate f_s\, (in samples per unit time) is:_s > 2 B\, ", and that the fundamental paradigms of Object Oriented Programming involve Classes,Methods, Inheritance, Encapsulation, Abstraction and Polymorphism,

Determine if the ball will fall to the ground.

Only there, there was no nice line break.

No more IC Engines. Transcendental Peace descends.

The ExoduSSS

(Update: This post was written in the extreme euphoria of realising that I don't ever need to bother about one more cutting tool or one more super/hyper/turbo/extra/infra-abrasive grinding wheel or one more universal-axis-fixed-bed-rotating-column-swiveling-table -vibrating-spindle-backgear-driven-variable-cone-pulley-drive drilling machine. In other words, this post entirely in jest, so no hard feelings anyone)

Some background information: Circa mid 5th sem, dissatisfied at the extraordinary resilience of students in miraculously surviving courses whose descriptions merit an entire flameblog by themselves, the now-familiar Mech department issued the most grave and torturous decree yet: Choose Thine Electives. The tactic was disarmingly simple: offer students elective courses for the sixth semester, make them waste innumerable number of hours debating the relative merits of each course, and when finally the Day of Reckoning comes and the students go to the profs to ask their permission (expected to be just a formality), deny it. Make students run around to prof after prof, in vain hopes of doing some interesting course.

And in the midst of this darkness came a sssaviour, a beacon of light. Come to me, he said (or was purported to have said), come to me, and I will take classes for 40 minutes a week for a 3 credit course. I will give you good grades, not bother about attendance, give bonus class breaks, take you out to parties and pubs.. um, no, I don't think he actually said that, but you get the drift.

And people went. In droves they went, yes they did.

The only problem is, the course he is taking, Turbomachinery, is a rather, ehm, let me put it this way, it isn't really the kind of course people fall in love with. After a detailed analysis at 3 AM the day before the IC engines exam, It struck. 'Like Lightning' would not quite carry the force this fantastic idea struck some of us fiscally inclined people. We've got it all worked out, and exclusively for the readers of this blog, here it is:

The Grand Pump (and Turbine) and Dump plan.

(For those of you not familiar with Mr.Mehta's tactics, wisdom beckons)

1. Conduct 17 different surveys of the number of people in Mech taking the course. All of them, of course, will (ok, should) show the number people in the Turbomachinery course to be anywhere from a minimum 80 to 600. No matter that the total number of people in Mech is 120, we shall call it Extended Sampling Truncation Error.

2. Call in the local tabloids that swear by the Grand Journalistic Principle "From Sense to Sensation, Onward Ho!" , and make 14 of the 17 surveys public. Release the other three to an upcoming online newsportal with an overenthusiastic team, and watch people quibble over numbers over national television for a while.

3. The eye of the sensation storm, is, of course, that any number between 83% to 571.8% of the Brightest Minds in the Country have Chosen Turbomachinery as their Path, and that there is no doubt that there is going to be intense competition in Engineering and Research in the field.

4. It is also a fact that a vast majority of the students of the course have demonstrated considerable Entreprenurial Spirit, and therefore it is beyond question that these Motivated Engineers shall set up thousands upon thousands of companies specializing in various aspects of Turbomachinery.

5. Give half a dozen interviews every day on how Asia and especially India is going to be a (turbomachinery) Design Hub, and how all the money in the world is going to pour down like torrential downpours.

6. And we come to the lambda point: Invest in Turbomachinery companies, big, small, rotary vane, straight vane,vane congruent, vane non congruent, the full monty. In anticipation of any difficulties in finding companies to invest in, I humbly beg to suggest you one incorporated just today by the one-post Phenomenon and Yours Truly, "Soopper Turbo Suttifiers GmBH".

7. Pump,pump, pump money into these companies. The market won't know what hit it. Shares are going to skyrocket like crazy. Make gazillions of dollars, and live happily ever after !

(This post is dedicated to Varun, who saved me from the aforementioned
-backgear-driven-variable-cone-pulley-drive drilling machine by putting hi funda pump and dump fundaes in the last bench.)

Saturday, November 18, 2006

Wednesday, November 15, 2006


XKCD simply is THE cartoon!!

Friday, November 03, 2006

Russel Rocks!

I found this article from the wiki, and it is wonderful! I couldn't agree with anything more!

From it, an especially interesting quote by Cromwell, to the Scots before the Battle of Dunbar:

I beseech you in the bowels of Christ, think it possible that you may be mistaken!

I seem to have found quite a nice way to capture the local Zeitgeist, and that is scanning around for interesting status messages. Hmm.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Woof. Meow is too passe

CAT classes are extremely interesting, and everyone should attend a few, regardless of intentions of actually giving the exam. It gets most interesting, when a group of Motivated Engineers unilaterally decide that the the most Optimum way to solve a problem is to Formulate it as a Quartic equation and use a heady mix of Variational Calculus and Finite Element Techniques to solve it, while the instructor explains the solution in 5 seconds flat. Or, when some other Enthusiastic Candidate proudly announces to the class that the price of each apple is precisely (4 + 6i) Rupees.

Aw, ok, I made them up, but you get the drift.. Its been a long time since I liked something so much that I'm making up examples to prove it is nice :-)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Anything's possible

Anything. Yes, even that.

Note to Self: Get that Dale Carnegie book back.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Patience, Patience

I wonder what he had in mind when he typed out the last sentence in the slide.

Do go through the whole presentation sometime.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

The best reality check for a course... to think of questions that can be asked in an open book, infinite time exam.

How many courses are you doing, where the number of possible such questions tends to zero?

Tuesday, October 10, 2006



Update: I just noticed that this software uses Working Model as its Physics Engine!! Working Model (WM) is a 10 year old mechanism design software (Google for it, a free version is available for download), but it is rather cumbersome to use by inexperienced people. What these fellows have done, is to take a 'smart' PPT screen (they are avaialble at rather low rates these days), taken the output to a program, made it recognise patters like the cross and the 'O', and made it output a WM script. It would have been at most a month's work, but dear me, look at the results!

This is a case study in innovation ! If only I did not have this quiz looming gloomily over me, I'd have wanted to write a 5 page report on this :-( Probably I will, after the quiz :-)

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

H9 e8

Sometimes, everything seems to just fit in. As Mukund would say, "Macha, its like someone is typing out everything I will do right behind me, and I almost hear the keystrokes ".It all started when I read Suze's post on living Here and Now. As the copious excess of posts on this blog probably indicates, I am all too guilty on all counts of consciously attempting to live everywhere but Here and Now,and for an utter contempt of doing one thing at a time. Some words sure do set you thinking, and that post is one most excellent example.

Such was the contemplative state of affairs, when I happened to meet with one of my very friendly profs, and started what may rather concisely be described as a Fart Session. The discussion veered from The System at IIT to Achievement to Ability to Distinction to Status to Probability and curiously enough, to Safety Factors. At this juncture, he made an enigmatic statement that set me thinking again : "Ships are safest at the harbour; Does it mean you keep them there?" I don't yet know why I think that is connected to all this, but somehow it seems so. Coincidentally that day, I needed to move over to Windows from my main course Linux for some commitment that was rather overdue (See?). The last time I had used Windows was a year ago, and thankfully it was still working. That partition on my drive contained some of my work of very long ago, and I made a mental note to search around for fun. Of course, my mental-note-memory can easily give Goldfish a run for their money. There have been times where I've finished making a detailed mental note, and promptly forgotten just what it was about :-)

I'd be forced to believe in Fat Tails to explain scientifically what happened today: I had plans for a hundred things, when all of a sudden, the LAN cupped. To cut a long story short, my comp is on quite the weaker end when it comes to disk space, and I have almost nothing stored on my own HDD. So, all I could do was search around whatever was there. I did, and happened to find two versions of the Requiem For a Dream soundtrack. The first one, the original by Lux Aeterna, and the second, called "Hope Overture".

Now, I have very little knowledge of music, and am totally lost when people speak of notes and meter and beats and scales. Among the only pieces of music that I have heard which actually feels like something, is the Requiem For a Dream soundtrack. RFaD is a sad movie about the ill effects of drug abuse; and imho, the soundtrack reflects this beautifully. You actually feel that the Violin lead is lamenting the terrible loss depicted in the film: that all is lost, that such ruin has befallen the characters; And the Hope Overture, with very, very little modifications to the original ( I don't know what exactly they have modified, except vaguely that a drum sequence in sync is mixed ) bring out the exact opposite: that there is hope, that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Somehow, this immediately reminded me of an old paper clipping of the Spirituality Column of a newspaper of long ago that I have in my bag. That was the first time I came across Rudyard Kipling's wonderful poem, 'If'. I'm going to type it all down here, for every time I read the poem, there is something I learn from it.

If , Rudyard Kipling, 1895

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait, and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or, being hated, dont give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master;
If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim ;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you have spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them "Hold on"

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run -
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And - which is more - you'll be a Man my son!

And strangely enough, this verse from the BhagavadGita :

ApUryamANam achalapratiSTHam
samudram ApaH pravishanti yadvat;
tadvat kAmAH ayam pravishanti sarvE
sa shAntim ApnOti na kAmakAmI.

"A person who is not disturbed by the incessant flow of desires — that enter like rivers into the ocean, which is ever being filled but is always still — can alone achieve peace, and not the man who strives to satisfy such desires."
The real Sanksrit meaning is much more deep, this is the most a translation can do :-(

Ah, my brief period of reflection is over: I can smell a vague malodorous scent from somewhere, and it can only mean something has gone Critical in the ancient heap of unwashed clothes lying around in the corner in my room.Action Stations !! May Day !! Code Red !! and all that, and Farewell till the next LAN outage or power cut :-)

Update: I found this hilarious translation of If- into Javascript, ROFL :D

Monday, August 28, 2006

Eye yam byack

Many a moon has passed (and a great big conjecture proved) since this grim nook of the internet revelled in the luxury of human attention, but I plan to make amends by posting blog entries with such fury that the very <> of blogspot's XML parser shall quake and quiver and...

Um, yeah, right. The thing is, there's a little online contest called SEO going on at Shaastra, and a friend of mine,Vimal, is earnestly exerting his energies into it. Curious, because getting on top of Google is hardly a well-predictable strategy, and external elements like being a good writer or knowing the right people can make a very large difference. But, to dissuade such inspired efforts would be a crime indeed, so here are my votes:

coecelanth durbatuluk
coecelanth equivocate
durbatuluk shaastra
durbatuluk equivocate
durbatuluk zeppelin
durbatuluk shaastra

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Of Monkeys and Mantech

I've started believing in the Infinite Monkey Theorem seriously; How else can you explain these facts :

1.) During the very short period I was at home, DD1 manages to play 'BeLadingaLa Bale', one of the rarest of gems to have come out of the dingy, dank dirtmine that the Kannada film industry is. It's the story of a Chessmaster, Anant Nag, and a mysterious fan of his who reveals who she is through ways so interesting that you'd refuse to think it was Kannada movie! If you're a Kannadiga, and have not seen this movie, I will not say a thing to you. Not even my usual 'Ninna Ee Janma enu, hindina n janmagalu waste-e'. You deserve to grieve in silence.

If you're not a Kannadiga, the only recourse left for you is to learn Kannada and see this movie!

2.) Zee MGM finally decided to stop their 24/7, back-to-back run of 'Gangsters of New York', and aired a beautifully made Swedish-Arabic film called 'Zozo'.The greatest achievement of a director is when he can tell a story in a language that a listener doesn't understand, and Mr. Joseph Forres has truly done it.Was real sad that it didn't win an Oscar, though.

In other developments, I've just realised its that time of the year again! The time of infinite indecision,of a hundred equal choices,of sleepless nights spent in futile analyses of merits of each viable option, yes,its JEE results time! I belive my two years at IITM have given me adequate authority to speak about one branch in particular, and, with your permission,I shall proceed to advertise it.

So,Why should you join Mech at IITM? What is it that is the Hallmark of Mechanical Engineering at IIT Madras? The very vast opportunities that beckon after graduating ? The relatively better chances for pursuing higher education abroad ? The relatively less intensive course load that will enable one to enjoy at least a bit of one's college years? The multitude of companies that come for placement? Or, that most basic of human emotions, Schadenfreude, at seeing the
Elec junta suffer?


The Reason to join Mech IITM, the sine qua non of its very sustenance,is a course called ManTech.

1. For starters, where, in all of the fine Institutions in this land, will you find a professor having an grand unparalleled attendance record of 48% ? Yes, for a change, the prof never turns up!

2. If you thought that the time when you read a novel sitting in the last bench of Zoology class was fun,come on over to any of last 10 (out of the 15 available) rows to find Daily Crossie contests, heated debates on Page 3 personalities, learned discourses on why exactly Mr.S missed out on the X coordship in Shaastra/Saarang, and a critical analysis on precisely why that chick in that ad in Outlook has a high coefficient of prurient appeal.

3. It has been catogerically proved (paper on this to follow, CB, what say?) that a typical Mantech class cannot be modeled as a Chaotic system. Indeed, the Chaos model is inadequately stochastic ! Why? A Chaotic system is, by defenition, sensitive only to the inital conditions. However, in the case of a ManTech class, the system tends to go hayware at even the slightest disturbance anytime. Proof? The prof walks in, takes out a pen drive, and inserts it into the comp. He however does not condescend to such plebian labour as turning the comp on. The usual levels of random noise continue for about two minutes, then someone suddenly realizes that nothing is happening.
At once, the whole building is resonating with shouts of 'Misra, Misra, fix the comp da'.. (Misra btw is the prof's pet :)

4. Picture this: For most of the time last semester, we had Vitto's class before Mantech,and in the neighboring room.Vitto used to come 5 minutes early, and leave us 10 minutes late. Now, though the Mantech prof strictly followed rule (1), when he did come, he used to be rather punctual. Every single time, he walks in to the class, and sees it totally empty because everyone's in the other class. Does his move about, and make his presence known? Pshaw! He declares a tea-break for himself, trots off to the Campus Cafe and comes back only about 30 minutes later! So, effectively, most of the classes we did have were about 20 minutes in duration.

I rest my case. :)

Saturday, May 20, 2006

I ain't no slacker

I was reading this amusing SMS which screamed itself hoarse on how many holidays there are in a typical Indian work calendar, and was 'inspired' by it to make, of all things, a daily schedule.

Come on, let us work it out. What might be the propah daily schedule for an IIT guy who is staying on in this inferno for the holidays and eating what is only euphemistically called 'Food', instead of peacefully relishing the culinary delights of namma Bengaluru ? Let us see now.

"Early to bed, early to rise, keeps a man healthy, wealthy and wise" quoth a an old poet. The medical benefits of rising early in the morning are too many to be recounted here.The mind is focussed most during the early hours of the morning."Early rising not only gives us more life in the same number of our years, but adds likewise to their number; and not only enables us to enjoy more of existence in the same measure of time, but increases also the measure.".How true.

Ok, so, let us think conservatively. Ah yes, 10 o'clock should be fine, eh? No? Ok, we'll keep everyone happy, 10:30 it will be then. Do I hear a resounding Yea? Yea to you too, my man!

  • 10:30 AM - Get Up

Now that the most ardous task of waking up is completed, let us channel our energies into charting the next course of action. What can a man do after getting up? Brush teeth? Naah, the bog is too far away. Take a bath? The water is too cold.Read the newspaper maybe? Oh no, the Hindu is too snobbish for my taste. What indeed? The most logical and obvious and wholesome thing to do, of course!

Go back to sleep! "Simplicity is the hallmark of Genius",and this, my friend, is as simple as it can get. Go back to sleep, check. But by now, we should start paying heed to other existential necessities, and think of grub. So, lets write it down, 12 noon, grub. Of what earthly use is a long,slow meal that doesn't end with an ice cream? None whatsoever. So add that to the itenary, one ice cream, check.

  • 10:31 AM - Go back to sleep
  • 12:00 noon - Grub + Ice Cream

The hour is a ripe 1 PM now, the sun is blazing, no holds barred. What should be done now? Take a bath? Nope, the water's too hot. <small voice> Do some work ? </small voice> Shiver me timbers, which planet are you from? Work on such a wonderful afternoon? Where do you get such ludricious ideas from? Suggestion categorically rejected! Come now, the correct answer isn't so hard to come by, think, think..

Yep, you got it. Watch a movie! Now why did that take so long to strike? Given

1.) A (almost) free LAN connection
2.) A decent comp
3.) 500+ movies on LAN,

What could be a better option ? So,

  • 1 PM - 4PM - Movie

What is the one thing that a nice matinee show does to you? Why, make you hungry, of course! So, trot off to Tiffany's for some 'light' evening snacks.

  • 4PM - 5PM - Light Evening Snacks.

The big question is, What happens next?

I have pondered long and deep over this, and soiled many a cloth wiping my brow while in deep thought. I have reached the farthest corners of the suggestive abilities of the intellect, the deepest valleys of origins of thought, the tallest mountains of flashes of genius, but nought has come out of this effort with regard to filling up the slot in my daily schedule.

What does a fellow who's done all that do when he finds out he has nothing to do? Why, meet other people who've done all that and have nothing to do, and put fart! Yay!

  • 5PM - 8PM - Fart!
Time for grub again!

  • 8PM - 9PM - Grub.

The day is now past. We have all of four hours until the fists of Big Brother come crashing down on our freedom.What is the most productive activity that could be done? Use the vast powers of the Information Superhighway to broaden our horizons and mindset and knowledge? Phooey! Orkut are there!

  • 9PM - 1 AM - Orkut

Four hours, you gasp? How the heck do you think I can beat Makam's 3500+ scraps otherwise?
So, let us sum it up now.

  • 10:30 AM - Get Up
  • 10:31 AM - Go back to sleep
  • 12:00 noon - Grub
  • 1 PM - 4PM - Movie
  • 4 PM - 5PM - More grub alias Light Evening Snacks.
  • 5PM - 8PM - Fart. (TM)
  • 8PM - 9PM - Much more grub.
  • 9PM - 1PM - Orkut.

But alas, at 1 AM, our wings are clipped, and the whole wide world goes whooshing out of our lives. Let us find solace in sleep, then.

  • 1 PM - Sleep.

There's a reason I named this blog Veni Vidi Vetti :)

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Shaastra 2006 Promo video

The Shaastra 2006 Events team has come up with this truly wonderful promo video for Shaastra. See it for yourself at :

If you wish to download a copy, you can do so at:

You can also find a 'cheat sheet' of the stuff in the video that is not too obvious at the second link.

Now, please, please, please read the cheat sheet only after you have
seen the video carefully. Poor Mr.Bondu will be crestfallen if you don't :)

Have fun!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Hello World! Spam and eggs!

Hello, Hello, Testing,Testing,

1... 2... 3... Check

1 million, 2 million, 3 million.. Check


(Clear throat)

Ladies and ...

(Hey wait, the template isn't right, get another one.
Ok, it seems fine now, Lets roll it!)

Ladies and Gentlemen, Boys and Girls, I wish to present to you (chest fully
forward) .
(deafening silence)
Aw cut it out, this is too corny.
Hi, I'm Mohan, and I'm splashing right into the Blogosphere! I had wanted to begin this first post of mine on the lines of :
It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents, except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the hostel corridors (for it is in Tapti Hostel that our scene lies), rattling along the rickety clotheslines, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness.

and hope of participating in this, but then sort of realized I didn't quite have the time to compete with greats who wrote such pristine prose as :

As he stared at her ample bosom, he daydreamed of the dual Stromberg carburetors in his vintage Triumph Spitfire, highly functional yet pleasingly formed, perched prominently on top of the intake manifold, aching for experienced hands, the small knurled caps of the oil dampeners begging to be inspected and adjusted as described in chapter seven of the shop manual.

Man, this world is full to brim with talent of all kinds ! Anyways, Thanks for coming , and please do keep dropping by!