Monday, December 31, 2007

The year gone by...

Only a philosophical sounding title and no more crap from me for this year. But I am sure you can do with some words of wisdom from Wally. :-)

Wish you all a fun filled evening/night ahead.... :-)

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Digg This!

What does one need to do to get a recording contract ? Well, one needs talent and creativity and just as importantly needs to know how to use all the technology at ones disposal.

Kina Grannis has all of the above and she has reportedly been approached with the offer of a singing contract for her toils. Here is the video she released on youtube which has gotten very very popular thanks to the obvious dedication to digg and of course the instant fan following guaranteed by youtube.

Find more videos of her here.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Love it - Love it not!

I have been following the Barclays premier league quite intently and like widely believed is the best league in the world. I do think there are other European teams that are better that those in the premier league, but overall quality of the teams is definitely better in it.

Since most of the matches are on weekends, I get to see quite a few of them. Though there is some flair missing in the game, it is definitely pacey and well coordinated. This makes for good viewing and definitely keeps me glued to the TV set. But then, along with all the good stuff comes the ever so common, acting and even worse cheating! Almost every team is full of crooks who just want to act their way into get a foul or a penalty or getting the opponent yellow/red carded. Some argue, this is part of the game. I would have bought that argument, had it not become the biggest part of the game these days. You have the most talented players acting like they were hit by a rock when all that happened was a finger of the defender just grazing the players face.

I believe there is a severe lack of use of technology in football. Every other sport has embraced it to make itself better, but football authorities stay as stone-age friendly as ever. At least use technology to monitor offsides, it does not take much time, probably a single replay would do in 95% of the cases. I don't know how of much technology will be actually ideal, but right now, its the best acting team that wins, not necessarily the best football skilled team.

p.s: I have just finished seeing the Everton vs Arsenal match, where, Arteta, Evertons best midfield creative player got sent off with a red card for a "maybe" yellow card offense all because Fabregas(Arsenal) acted like he had been hit by a bullet instead of Artetas elbow! The match lost steam after this and a close match till then ended tamely with a 4-1 win for Arsenal!

Movie Review: I Am Legend

Long time since I saw a new release, and was hoping for a winner with I Am Legend. You mix Will Smith with weird beings or aliens and you have a recipe for a blockbuster or so I hoped.

The movie is all about a virus which infects all of mankind and other living creatures, killing 90% of humans and making most of the remaining into very physically powerful zombies. The only thing that they fear is light. Will Smith for some unknown reason is immune to the virus and lives his life with his dog. His daily routine is pumping iron, conducting experiments on rats with different variants of his blood in an effort to find a cure and then wandering abandoned streets in search of DVDs to watch. All goes terribly wrong one day, when he is trapped by the zombies using one of the contraceptions that he uses to catch them! In the fight that ensues, his dog gets infected with the virus and he has to kill it. He loses his cool and tries to kill how many ever of the zombies as he can. He kills quite a few and is about to become zombie food, when miraculously, a girl and her brother come from nowhere and save him. This is the most unconvincing part of the story.

The surprise inclusion to the list of human survivors sets up for a finale, wherein Will Smiths house is raided by the zombies and he manages to save the girl and her brother but not before he magically finds a cure and not without having to blow himself up. The girl and her brother escape to meet up with more survivors (wonder where they were all along) and who are expected to help use the cure on the zombies.

All in all a disappointing fair. There were moments of tension and newness, followed by absolute ridiculous turns to the story and in the end there are just too many questions left unanswered or answered unconvincingly. Will Smith is ok in the movie and can't say much for the acting of the zombies. :-). I would give it a 6 on 10.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Hopping Gavaskar!

Anyone who has been listening to Sunil Gavaskar as a commentator would have seen his absolute anger at some commonly used terminologies or common spectator practices. He almost sounded like he was from a different planet! For e.g. He doesn't like the Hindi film industry being referred to as Bollywood. He also hates it when spectators make caps out of the national flag or if the national flag is not with the right dimensions or if the chakra has fewer spokes etc etc.

Considering Gavaskar being such a strict customer, he would have gone bonkers at seeing the streaker at the MCG on Boxing Day and the preferred clothing provided to him thereof!

I must say... the picture shows some very inappropriate stop-gap arrangement by the cops. If the streaker wants to parade naked... let him! But does he have to be covered using the Indian national flag? Can't they get hold of some piece of paper or something? Even if they don't, is it more important to cover for obscenity at the cost of insulting a nations national flag?

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Smart move...

ICL just finished its first tourney and gave us a glimpse of what could be. Though I didn't really find the interest to see the matches, the never before heard grounds where these 20-20 matches were played were chock-a-block. There is still no clarity of whether the young players in ICL will ever be considered to play for India. Also, international players who played in the ICL face the effects of BCCI trying to pull strings. But one section of people associated with cricket who are raking in the moolah and not facing any of the BCCI wrath are the commentators.

I remember seeing articles from Tony Greig in the newspapers and on giving thumbs up to ICL, comparing it to the Packer series in the late 70s. He later went on to commentate as a special panelist for ICL. Surprisingly, I now see Tony Greig in his regular role as commentator with Channel 9 in the ongoing India vs Australia Boxing day test match!

Maybe its time for the oldies in the different international teams (Lara, Atapattu, Andrew Hall etc etc) considered taking up commentary rather than playing rebel tournaments. :-) Its less/not objectionable and yet makes lotsa money.

Slingling From Bangalore

I got my hands on my Slingbox PRO today! A minorly customized coax cable and 5 minutes later, I am Slinging! The pic below is taken with me sitting in my bedroom with my lappy and seeing Star Cricket while I work/browse at the same time...

I have to say, I have not setup any other gadget in as less time (minus the cable customization) as the slingbox. This is a really well engineering product and deserve the good publicity they get. I had my worries with coax being outdated in the US and with PAL/NTSC issues, but luckily all worked well.

Damn.... this is bliss!!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The business of medicine

I have been meeting quite a few doctors in the last 2-3 weeks. There couldn't be more contrasts in any profession like in the field of medicine.

1. You are earning direct karma points from God for helping people
2. You can goof up and screw lives of people
3. You are the saviour for most and reminder of pain for some
4. Most keep money before the passion of the profession

Some of the doctors I met are established, raking in the moolah and could care less about the patient. There is another lot, though established, is trying to promote their new hospital and hence are nice to you. There are also the ones who are new to this and want to earn some "good" name which will hold them in good stead in the future. Each one did their job with a different demeanor and yet, at the end of the day, I don't see any real big difference from one to another. Its probably because, deep down, I could sense that there was no genuineness in any of them. Everyone had a hidden agenda and everyone had an angle to work. But I also thank all of them just the same, as at the end of the day they all helped in their own way.

One always feels a very special high when we get to hear good stuff from customers who have used the boxes that run the code we write and of course feel the shame when the customer is furious over some bug. Imagine living the life where you can feel this high each day and also face the complaints live from the customer!

The world of medicine... maybe its worth the money.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Bengalooru Bangalore-d ?

A friend of mine recently pointed me to this article. I spent some time reading it and this was my reply to my friend.

Read the article... a very theoretical and derived view of what could be, not what is. Bangalore is still the IT capital even with all the political apathy. Like any other city, the present boom in India is not applying to all strata of society. Some of us, mostly the middle class and upper middle class seem to be able to make good in this situation along with the rich (who always make good). With all the influx of people, I, who is a thorough bred bangalorean does feel that, Bangalore is slipping away, but then, I am still part of it, thanks to IT, thanks to my pay check. But the not so well to do are feeling that Bangalore is slipping away and they can do nothing about it and have nothing to do
with it and may soon not be able to afford to be in it.

Of course, the economic disparity has increased, but Bangalore is not alone and definitely the IT industry is not the specific target of any ire.

Agree? Disagree?

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Just 'E'scape

Gotta give it to Scott Adams, he sure can make every mundane yet passable situation in the IT industry abstracted into the most humourous cartoon!


Sunday, December 02, 2007

Life happens

A longish break from this blog. Not planned, not intended, but it happened.

Anywayz, life is back on track, and so is this blog. :-)