Monday, September 29, 2008

Miracle ??

People who are familiar with the stretch of Old Madras Road between Krishnarajapuram and NGEF junction know the dreaded Beneganahalli bridge. This is a real bottlneck for traffic movement throughout the day starting as early as 8AM and not ending even at 9PM. I used to frequent this section every day and every night and it took quite a toll on the emails I sent on reaching office or the intensity with which I would chew my dinner. :-)

This section had actually gotten so bad, that I had started using the Airport road to get to/from office. Just the other day, a week or so back, I took my chances for reasons I can't remember, changed loyalties and went via my ex-route. :-). To my utter surprise, I cruised at 30kmph (trust me, this is speeding!!) through the section. I thought this was just my lucky day and tested my luck in the evening. Same result again! Cruised through... I tested the stretch again and again the next few days. Everyday, same result...even at 9:00AM or 7:00PM, which are peak traffic times! There was no change in traffic patterns with respect to feeding of vehicles and yet this miracle ??

This is a mystery which needed figuring out. So, I sacrificed some of my grey cells for this noble cause. As it turns out, the traffic cops were the reason for the blockage at Beneganagalli. I actually have a lot of respect for the traffic cops who do a decent job in Bangalores maddening traffic. So, why would these traffic cops do such a stupid thing... day in and day out and then one fine day, stop doing so ??

The answer my friends is that (and here I theorize...), the next big junctions i.e. NGEF and C V Raman Nagar junctions are both heavy traffic ones. Since more people will be affected if there are traffic jams in these junctions, the earlier junction i.e. Beneganahalli bridge junction is choked on purpose to smoothen traffic in the following junctions! Then came a point when the Beneganahalli bridge junction became a bigger bottleneck than the the worst of jams on the bigger junctions. And voila, traffic cops vanish and so do the traffic jams at Beneganahalli bridge!

So there, mystery solved... at least in my mind. :-) But whatever be the reason, this sure is a blessing for people struck by traffic plight.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Movie Review : A Wednesday

I was not in town last weekend and missed the movie reviews of the newly released movies. But my sis-in-laws SMS'ed me the ratings and was not surprised to see A Wednesday got 4 stars. The movie stills were impressive coz it came through as a no-bullshit movie and catering to the multiplex audience (which is so me!).

So, not surprisingly, I saw the movie this weekend. Its a short movie by Bollywood standards and has no song-dance sequences, no mushy-mellow stuff and definitely no hamming! The actors at the helm of the movie, Naseeruddin Shah and Anumpam Kher have got a chance to work in a movie befitting their talent. The story is crisp and to the point with next to no surprises, gearing the viewers for the suspenseful few minutes at the end. Since its a short movie with a tight storyline and no frills, one doesn't get bored and this pacy point of the movie is good. The role of the journalist has been shaped out badly and doesn't have enough meaning to it. Using the media to see the happenings "live" has been seen many times in movies in the past and the same is used here too.

People who plan to watch the movie, please stop reading now, as spoilers follow. I will try my best to retain the interesting parts of the plot. :-)

The story is very straightforward. Its a "I have planted bombs, free the terrorists" plot. Though I liked the movie because of its intent, the possibility of something like this happening seems way too remote. No one has the time, money, will, guts or one may say, even need, to do something as what the protagonist has done. And there were some very amateurish mistakes too.

For e.g:
1. How did Naseer get access to all the money needed for something like this ? He seems like a 'common' middle class man.
2. For someone this techie about everything else in the movie, his lack of attention to detail, like getting a simple disguise while getting into the police station is stupid
3. Use gloves! Doesn't anybody watch CSI ?? :-)
4. Its fine for Naseer to be getting cooked in the mumbai heat, but couldn't he have spared his gear ?
5. If Anupam Kher had not intention of catching/Killing Naseer, why even go to the supposed site of operations that Naseer used ?
6. If Naseer was using "some" software to do number hopping, why care for changing the SIM each time ? Why even come to mumbai to do stuff ? Sit at home and have fun!

Anywayz, all in all, a decent fair, paisal vasool, worth watching once! I give it a 7 on 10.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Huh... Come Again ?!?

I have rarely liked Ads on US television and looks like internet Ads are no different. I have seen a few of the famed Apple Ads, they are OK, but not really out there funny or out there cool. Micro$oft Ads have been even less funnier than the Apple ones and they seem to be very intent on keeping it that way. They must have paid millions to get Jerry Seinfeld to do these, but then, just because you have one of the greatest stand-up comedians of all time does not mean that you can get away with absolute nonsensical crap!! Bill Gates may be a saint, thanks to his charity foundation, which is cool. But damn, he is not even close to cool in the below Ads! Have a look...

Damn Bill, Damn Jerry, Damn Micro$oft... what were you guys thinking ? What was the point of the Ads ? If you plan to pass some message or slogan about Windows/Micro$oft, at this rate, you will need a 100 videos before you actually get there!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008


Couple of nice ones. :-)

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Idea Drought ?

As is now very common knowledge, Google took tiny steps with their big feet into the browser world with the beta version of Chrome. This is a rather confusing move on Google's part, as they have always been a strong advocate of Firefox and getting a browser, no matter how the positioning, will be a hindrance to Firefox's continued acceptance and possible domination in the browser world. So, I really wonder, who does Google plan to hurt with this new product ? Tech savvy people will choose Firefox without a doubt, but I do hear IE 8 has some nice stuff coming up. Who do you think will be using the Chrome ? Gotta be tech savvy people, again! Is Google running out of ideas for products ?

I was also very surprised by the number of people who have heard of Chrome! How did Google manage that ?? I have not seen any Ads pop up on Gmail or Google Search. I don't remember popular tech blogs reporting about the new incumbent into the browser world till the actual beta of the product. All in all, many things about this product is surprising.

Though I haven't used Chrome enough to be able to give a complete review, here is my first take on it. Its a simple browser!! There are no bells and whistles to talk about, there are no obvious eye catchers (other than its simplicity). Its definitely less memory consuming than Firefox 3. Its definitely faster than Firefox 3, at least under low load. There is no official mention of add-ons support, but I would presume that its a foregone conclusion that there would be add-on support. A simple Google search did give me a few hits about Chrome add-ons, but I haven't tried any.

In a nutshell, this is a fast browser, but there is nothing innovative about it, at least not yet. I am not even closely tempted to move away from Firefox, but then, since i use so many of Googles products, I wouldn't mind giving one more of their products a decent shot. Lets wait and watch...