Friday, December 24, 2004

Thursday, December 23, 2004

Nevis New Year Bash!

We had an AMAZING New Year Party (well in advance ;-) ) yesterday night at a VERY ROMANTIC place: Oasis, on Pashan-NDA Road. The open air ambience was GREAT. DJ sucked! But starters and dinner was good. An interesting thing happened that night ... there I discovered a VERY CUTE female. Her skin as Soft as Butter ... as Fair as an Angel ... she was as Beautiful as a Fairy ... So Cutie Cutie Cutie ... Sweetie Sweetie Sweetie ... And guess what, I'll share her photo with you all! But before I do that, I WARN you that she might take your breath away! So keep a life-supporting system handy ... and be careful! Here you go ... click 1 ... click 2 and click 3! Thats enough, I guess!

Here are some photos from the party ...


1. Look out bud! The liquid in those glasses is not meant for kids ...
Myself having ball of a time ...



2. We Will We Will ROCK You!
Buddies in FULL form ... (reminding you that this was despite the fact that DJ SUCKED like HELL!)









3. Angels And Demons ...
(second half not literally ... )




4. Men In Black ...
Hmmm .... not bad ... Barry Sonnenfeld can make a MIB trilogy!




That's it! It's 0940 hrs @ office now and only a few people have turned up! People indeed had a lot of ____ you know what ;-)
Party mood out ... work mood in! Have a GREAT DAY ahead!

Photo Credits: Atul Talesara
Equipment: Fuji FinePix S3000
Mode: All photos taken at AutoFocus setting



Tuesday, December 21, 2004

What next!

Hey Buddies, in my previous post about latest novel I read, I forgot to mention that I've picked up Angles & Demons, by Dan Brown. The reason I'm dedicating a special post just to tell that I've picked up that novel is not that I don't have any work. Far from that! It's just becasue it's SUCH A WONDERFUL novel that I couldn't wait to finish it and urge you guys to read it. It is a prequel to Da Vinci Code. And I tell you it's hell of a novel! Of the 100+ pages I read, I bet this is more exciting, exhilarating, enjoyable, action-packed ... than Da Vinci Code. So pick up a copy and devour it! Esp. with a hot cup of tea (or coffee, chilled beer, or whatever) in the balcony, yourself draped well in warm cozy clothing! What the hell ... I'm getting again and again to that mist! I don't want to sit here in my 10x10 cubicle with such a wonderful morning outside. Such a waste of Nature's Beautiful Morning!

What a drive!

I’m listening to the songs of Mughal-E-Azam while driving towards my office. WOW!!! These wonderful songs while driving through empty misty roads with vision clear as far as my eye can see, blocked only by the thick mist! What a wonderful way to start the day! You don’t see so much of mist in Pune upto this late in the morning. How BADLY I wish I still were a student ... would have definitely bunked the college and gone for a long drive with buddies ... stopping by a small hut-like stall to have HOT Vada-Pav with Steaming Hot Masala Tea!!! GOD damn this phone! Got me out of my fantasy ride! Be right back with you ... till then ... envy me uh ... rather my fantasy!

The Best Laid Plans, Sidney Sheldon

The Best Laid Plans an amazing page-turner, is what I would call it. Its about a beautiful and ambitious executive, Leslie, who learns that for some men, Oliver, power is the greatest aphrodisiac. The rest of novel is dominated by the explosive collisions between the two equally determined people. With Oliver aiming at the White House, to become a President, Leslie swears to make him wish he was never born! Though it’s an amazingly action-packed fast-paced thriller, end is something that disappointed me. If you like thriller and suspense, the novel has plenty of both. And least to say, it has most unexpected twists, and the one in the end is the only one that disappointed me. But I don’t repent reading this novel, for I enjoyed it until the last but one page!
BTW, as of this writing, I peep out of my window and see mist all around. How desperately I wish I had a GF, I would have gone with her for a wonderful breakfast and maybe movie thereafter ;-) How romantic! Hell ... the fantasy ends as my watch beeps that it's time to take my butt off the chair and head to office!Got LOADS of work @ office, as usual.

Friday, December 17, 2004

My own 2 cent VIM Tip

I was editing some code and it required HELL lot of comments (well ... I do put ample comments in the code!!!) and FIXME/TODO notes. I like the format to be something like:
AtulT 17-Dec-04 TODO <text follows here>

Typing this tens of times is !@#$ing boring. You can abbreviate it as:
ab coM AtulT 17-Dec-04
ab TODO AtulT 17-Dec-04 TODO
ab FIXME AtulT 17-Dec-04 FIXME
But that's no GOOD!!! Why??? Hell, I have to change ab settings every day! Thats not how a programmer codes! I knew that HAS to be a better way, esp. when I have VIM! And yes, I discovered my own very very sexy way of doing that. I would love to share my own 2 cent tip with you.

Add this to your .vimrc file:
" Special settings to include date and my name in
" TODO FIXME and comments
" date "+%d-%b-%y"
ab coM AtulT ^O:r! date +\%d-\%b-\%y^[ kJA
ab TODO AtulT ^O:r! date +\%d-\%b-\%y^[ kJA TODO
ab FIXME AtulT ^O:r! date +\%d-\%b-\%y^[ kJA FIXME

BINGO! There I am! Now I coolly type 'coM' and vim expands it to 'AtulT 17-Dec-04'. Same goes for TODO and FIXME!!! The best part is that it will ALWAYS picks up the current date. I'm not sure if there's a sexier way of achieving this, but my own tip is SEXY enough ;-) You can change this to include time, pwd, exact user-id, GID, ... any damn thing.

AtulT 30-Jun-08:Adding space between ^[ and k (i.e. Esc and k) made this tip work for terminal-based vim.

IMPORTANT!
^O and ^[ are special control characters, the way to enter them is, in insert mode, press Ctrl-Q followed by Ctrl-O and Ctrl-Q Ctrl-Esc resp. You know you have entered them right if you navigate over ^O and ^[ and cursor passes through both at once, as a single character. Use Ctrl-V if Ctrl-Q doesn't work for you.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

Da Vinci Code, by Dan Brown

This is one of those few novels where you cannot conclude if its fiction or fact! You never grasp where the facts end and author's fiction/conclusions start. Facts and imagination are interwoven so beautifully! The first (and the only one) novel I read of this type is "The Seventh Secret, by Irving Wallace", which explored to depth the possibility that Hitler never committed suicide but escaped before the allied forces stormed into his bunker. After reading Da Vinci Code you are bound to doubt the very foundations and basis of modern Christianity. The novel is about (well, don't worry, no spoilers! I won't reveal any suspense) deliberate anomalies/oddities in Da Vinci's paintings wanting to tell it's viewer something, giving you premises to doubt the very claims of modern Christianity. The story is set in Paris where symbologist, Robert Langdon, comes under policemen's eye as a prime suspect in murder of museum's curator. Fighting against all the odds, studying and deciphering the hidden hints in paintings, carvings and anagrams Robert vows to uncover the murderer, a quest that will lead him to the deadliest and most closely guarded secrets of history!!! There's no looking back once he steps in! Whether you love Arts, History, Suspense, Thriller, Drama, Action OR Secret Cults ... this novel is going to race your pulses!!! In fact if this novel doesn't get your beats rising, you better get your medical checkup done, :-) LOL! This novel has definitely made into my Top 20s list!

Moral: This novel is a MUST READ!
What next? Well, I wanted to read The Glass Bead Game, by Herman Hesse(genre Spiritual), but couldn't manage to borrow it from my buddy in time. So started with Sidney Sheldon's "The Best Laid Plans". Review on that will follow soon.

Atlas Shrugged, by Ayan Rand

Hurray! Finally, I've finished reading this novel! Yes, for not-so voracious reader like me, it was an arduous task to read this 1700 paged novel with microscopic typesetting! It's a philosophical novel portraying what would become of world if all the rationality was destroyed from it and the world was left to be run by the moochers (read ____ing power-hungry parasitic politicians). Everyone trying to earn, not by his effort or ability, but by mere needs; claiming ownership on fruits of others' hard work just on the basis of his needs. Trying to claim that it's the extent of need that decides who gets what, and not the capacity of a person to produce or his caliber.Ayan Rand goes to the extent of saving that without rationality the purpose of a man's life is to become an abject Zombie who serves the purpose he doesn't know. And I tell you, she does a pretty good job here. If you are labeled "Selfish" when you feed your son with milk while the neighbouring child is starving, then YES! You better be selfish! Well, I'm not supporting selfishness, but Ayan gives us a look into different kind of selfishness, of the type I just mentioned above. Had it been in my capacity, I would have this novel as "Code of Moral Conduct".
After reading second novel by this Ayan (first being Fountainhead) I have come to believe that she is BEST at describing human gestures of any kind. So much so, that an animator can EXACTLY model it without any difficulty of any sort. Yes, the length of novel can be attributed to this characteristic of hers: The description spans 2/3 paragraphs where something as simple as "And he grinned" would have sufficed! If you don't like circumlocution, you better keep your hands off her novels.
This novel is NOT for those who:
- despise elaborate descriptions
- hate philosophy
- hate slow paced novels
- love to take novels as a sedative to bed
But this is a CANDY for anyone who likes philosophy.

Divided in 3 sections, first section sets the stage where rationality keeps vanishing from the world, second shows how a few rationalists people manage to survive in such a world and the last one ... well, not supposed to tell you that, I don't want this to be a spoiler to prospective readers. So get your hands on this novel and read through it!

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Water Therapy

Thought of sharing this AMAZING health tip with you.
Drink six [6] glasses of water (1.5 litre) everyday and avoid medicine, tablets, injections, diagnosis, doctor fees etc. You can never believe before practicing.

HOW TO DO THIS WATER THERAPY?
1. Early morning, after you get up from bed, (without even brushing your teeth) drink 1.50 litters of water i.e. 5 to 6 glasses. Let us all know that ancient Indians termed this therapy as "USHA PAANA CHIKITSA". You may wash your face thereafter.


2. Here it is very essential to note that nothing else, neither drinks nor solid food of any sort should be taken within 1 hr. before and after drinking these 1.5 litters of water.


3. It is also to be strictly observed that no alcoholic drinks shall be taken the previous night.


4. If required, boiled and filtered water may be used for this purpose. Is it possible to drink 1.50 litters of water at one time? This is a BIG QUESTION? To begin with, one may find it difficult to drink 1.50 litters of water at one time, but one will get used to it gradually. Initially, while practicing you may drink four glasses first and then the balance two glasses after a gap of 2 minutes. Initially you may find the necessity to urinate 2 - 3 times within an hour, but it will become normal after quite some time.


By research and experience, the following diseases are observed to be cured with this therapy within the indicated days as below (I doubt if diabetes and cancer part are actually true):
Constipation -- 1 day
Acidity -- 2 days.
Diabetes -- 7 days.
Cancer -- 4 weeks
Pulmonary TB -- 3 months
BP & Hypertension -- 4 weeks


HOW DOES PURE WATER ACT ?
Consuming ordinary drinking water by the right method purifies human body. It renders the colon more effective by forming new fresh blood, known in medical terms as Haematopaises. That the mucousal folds of the colon and intestines are activated by this method, is an undisputed fact, just as the theory that new fresh blood is produced by the mucousal fold. If the colon is cleansed then the nutrients of the food taken several times a day will be absorbed and by the action of the mucousal folds they are turned in to fresh blood. The blood is all-important in curing ailments and restoring health and for this water should be consumed in a regular pattern.


LIFE IS SHORT & INVALUABLE, JUST GO FOR IT.

Wishing you A Healthy Life.

Note: My Mommy is pursuing PhD in Jainology and this is exactly what she explained me about drinking water early morning!
Additionally, please note that the saliva that's in your mouth through the night has got great medicinal value, so it should go into your stomatch, implying, drink water even before you spit out or gargle or brush. Taking water kept in
copper vessel overnight will add to it's medicinal value.

Monday, December 13, 2004

Migratory Birds @ Bhigwan and Matoba

Had been to Bird Watching outing this Sunday, along with a group called InSearch.
Every year, from September through Feburary, Pune and it's surrounding wetlands give home to a number of migratory birds. These birds travel thousands of kilometers (many of them non-stop!!!) to escape the inclement conditions of Europe, Northern Asia and Himalayas.

Bhigwan: Situated about 100km from Pune, the waters of Ujani dam provides a healthy habitat attracting Ducks, Pochards, Storks, Sea Gulls, Marsh Harrier, Herons, etc.
Not to forget, if you get lucky you can glimpse at Flamingoes too!

Matoba: Is a big lake situated about 50km from Pune. You get to see plenty of Brahminy Ducks and Shovellers here.

To share the fun with you, I've posted a few snaps, you can have a look at them.

1. Heron in Flight:



2. Another Heron in flight




3. Closeup of a Pond Heron



4. A bird that we caught a glimpse from bus



5. A Fleet of Flamingoes
Man, you should look them with binoculars, they look AMAZING!
We could only see a fleet of hundreds of them flying past us a few times.



Most of the birds @ Matoba weren't big enough to capture in my camera with zoom of 6x, hence you no birds from Matoba lake.

6. Wonderful Sunset



7. Pink Flower




Photo Credits:
1 through 6 myself, Atul Talesara
7 My buddy, Harpreet Saluja.
Equipment: Fuji FinePix S3000
Mode: All photos taken at AutoFocus setting.
Note: I've cropped all the photos and reduced the resolution to post them on blog. Please contact me in case you want the higher resolution images.


Thursday, December 09, 2004

Get Nostalgic!

In the GOOD olden Doordarshan days, do you recall the animated clip 'Ek Chidiya Anek Chidiya'? Well, I got hold of that clipping, click here and get nostalgic, before the link goes dead!
What ..... More.....
Well, you wanna get more nostalgic, then check this remake of 'Mile Sur Mera Tumhara' The sound track is original, only visuals are new. Warning! This is 58MB clipping.

Re-edit!
Oh! People want to get MORE nostalgic! I'm re-editng this post to increase the dosage!!!
1. Mile Sur Mera Tumhara Audio AND
2. Baje Sargam Bankar Desh Raag Audio:
Hope you love these too!!!

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Snapshot of desktop ...


My desktop, haiving fun with Jessica, as on 26-Nov-2004.
(Vim scheme is 'blackdust')

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Fastest way to convert numbers

Ever wanted to convert thousands of numbers from one base to another!!! Well M$ Windoze's 'calc' is just MORE THAN useless, unless, of course, you are ready to copy-paste each of those thousands of numbers, convert it and then again copy-paste it back to some other file! BTW, even if you are ready to do so, your boss probably will be LEAST impressed by that ;-)

Yes, you are right! Linux (*nix) is the ONLY answer! No need of perl! Neither any arcane scripting. Just plain 'bc' is enough.
Here's the trick:
  1. Copy all your numbers in plain text file.
  2. Put 'ibase=16' as your first and 'quit' as last lines in the file.
  3. You can put 'obase=n' as your second line, in case your output should be in base 'n' (10 is default, so skip it).
  4. bc your_file
BINGO! There you are! All those thousands of numbers are converted to required base in a jiffy!
Note: You need to redirect output of 'step 4' and collect it in a seperate file.

You can use any combination of ibase (Input base) and obase (Output base) in the range '2 thro 16'. But you need to ensure that all input numbers are in CAPITALS! Not a problem at all, use this command to achieve that:
# cat your_file | tr a-f A-F > another_file
(of course, the better way is open in vim and, ggVGgU)
Sample run:
# cat /tmp/hex.txt
ibase=16
FF
100
AF
quit

# bc /tmp/hex.txt
bc 1.06
Copyright 1991-1994, 1997, 1998, 2000 Free Software Foundation, Inc.
This is free software with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY.
For details type `warranty'.
255
256
175
I'm not arguing that this solution is better than Perl-based or C-based or Script-based ones. But this definitely is the least effort solution given the fact that 'bc' is a part of any standard Linux installation.

One of the views on Linux ...

Linux (rather any *nix) suits people who prefer to scratch their own backs. It can be awkward at first, but those experienced in the process find their itches scratched faster, better and cleaner than hiring someone else to scratch your back.

Monday, December 06, 2004

An account of my Oral Surgery.

Problem:
About 3 weeks back the Right side of Lower jaw swelled, inflicting severe pain. Something that had happened about thrice in past 2 years. Reluctant to visit a dentist, I ignored thinking it would subside in a day or two. But it only got worse and I had to visited a dentist, where she asked me to get an X-ray. I went back to her after 3-4 days with the X-ray and she told that my Wisdom tooth is impacted, i.e. it’s growing tilted outwards exerting tremendous pressure on rest of dentition. I almost skipped my beats when she told me that I’ll have to undergo an operation to get it removed. An operation since the tooth wasn’t externally visible yet!!! Hell, I said to self!!! After much reluctance I visited a dentist and now I’ll have to see an Oral Surgeon!!! GOD help me!!!

The Solution:
On my brother’s insistence I went to Dr. Suhas Vaze, who, incidentally, is also H.O.D of his college. He said that this doc, apart from being an excellent Oral Surgeon, is also famous for his insurmountable cool temperament and patience. Indeed! After my first appointment with him I could sense it and my apprehension subsided after chatting with him. He scheduled my operation on 3rd of Dec, Friday. Much frightened, I reached his clinic on scheduled time. The typical odour in hospitals and clinic, reminiscent of the special chemicals used to keep the hygiene, made me feel so nauseating. After being seated on his chair, he pulled out an injection and I almost instinctively opened my mouth. Doc almost chuckled and said that this was to be administered on my arm. It’s purpose was to reduce the secretion of juices in my mouth to keep gag reflexes at minimum. Later he administered local anesthesia in my mouth, with equal skill. The way with his feather-light hands he injected me, I was coming to have more and more faith in his supreme medical abilities. Just at the same moment I saw only a few (literally 4-5) simple enough instruments on his tray. I was expecting an array of instruments today! GOD! This is really cool! Seeing my clenched fists, doc said ‘don’t worry son, even if I remove all your eight teeth you won’t feel slightest pain’! He then took a long incision on my jaws to expose the jaw-bone. Mind you, the tooth had not yet grown fully, which necessitated grinding jaw bone to expose the tooth within. He revved his 30,000 rpm micro motor (drilling machine, in colloquial terms) and put it in my mouth. It gave out a shrilling sound when it touched my bone, but much skillfully he grinded off requisite amount of bone. I felt doc smiling. Now the tooth was much visible and he put an instrument in my mouth and started pushing it upwards slowly. When it was sufficiently visible, he along with his assistant, started pushing it out harder. This was a little painful and doc had already warned me. The pain was because of pressure I felt on both ends of lower jaw bone, exactly below each of the ears. Seeing doc put the tooth on this tray, almost 40 minutes had passed now, I saw ordeal coming to an end :-) It indeed was!!! That’s it, I said to self. I bet, had it been any other dentist, he would have messed a lot! Despite the fact that he was working in the furthest end of my mouth, I didn’t feel slightest discomfort in my mouth during operation. Well, I’m speaking this of my previous experience of having, to my credit, three root-canal treatments!!! You better believe me! Taking a few stitches he wrote a prescription and explained me the drug schedule. Surprised!!! I saw only one steroid prescribed there! Stupefied, I asked 'only this much'! ‘Yes’, doc said. I got more explicit and asked what about pain-killers! He said I won’t need one, and in case I do, he asked me to take any of combiflam or brufen. The prescribed medicine was to keep a check on infection. Indeed, I didn’t need any pain killers, except for one. After the effect of anesthesia was evanescing at night, I felt severe pain. When it grew almost unbearable I took one brufen and went off to sweet sleep! I was expecting a LARGE swelling on my cheeks the other morning! But no! I was much happier being the Saturday morning! Touch Wood! Except for little a discomfort due to the fact that I cannot chew on hard food stuffs, I’m absolutely comfortable! Touch Wood!
I know, you are hell-bored now, so lemme get down to morals.


Moral 1:
If you have any dental problems, I would strongly advise you to visit this dentist, Dr. Suhas Vaze in Kothrud.

Moral 2:
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent.
It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.

Mother of Morals:
Some agonies are physical.
Some are mental.
But the one which is both is ... DENTAL!


Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Sometimes ...

S O M E T I M E S


Sometimes..
when you cry...
no one sees your tears.

Sometimes...
when you are in pain...
no one sees your hurt.

Sometimes...
when you are worried...
no one sees your stress.

Sometimes...
when you are happy...
no one sees your smile.

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-
But FART just ONE time...
And everybody knows!!
Gotcha!! You thought it was going to be one of those heart-touching stories!

Have a productive day and remember you are the key to your happiness

Tuesday, November 30, 2004

My Watch: Casio G-Shock


Was playing with different camera settings, liked this snap & hence sharing.
Photo Credits: Atul T.
Camera: Fuji FinePix S3000
Mode: AF

Monday, November 29, 2004

Weekend shopping!

Saturday, I had been to Bombay (Mumbai, as it is now a days called) for shopping. This probably was the first time I've ever participated in shopping clothes! Yes, all other times I just used to go and act as a model putting on everything my Mommy n Daddy asked me to. But this time I was a GOOD Boy and helped a lot in shortlisting the clothes and of course modeling too! We had gone to Heera Panna (in Haji Ali), one of THE places in Bombay to shop if you want quality stuff with decent prices. With more than 150 shops in the complex you can really experience the phenomenon of "Shop Till You Drop!". You get lots of things there: clothes, electronics (PDAs, mobiles, players, etc), deodorants, cosmetics, footwears, home appliances, and almost everything that can be imported! Spent most of the day there and an hour or so at Crossroads (where, after NO energy left to choose things, we only did window shopping).

Sunday, as usual, played football, we had only 14-15 guys on the ground, but, of course, enjoyed playing. With the on-going tournament concluding we expect more people to return (read 'they better return') to their regular game. Kanbay bags the first position (heard Sameer's performance and composure despite Infy scoring the first goal in initial 5 minutes of game was marvellous, which in essence got them thro the game well), followed by Infy and then Persistent.

After dozing for rest of the day until I had no desire to sleep any more, I went to cousin's place in the evening and there on idiot box (read TV) I happened to see ( ... yuck!..., sorry) "Coffee with Karan" ( ... yuck! ...) !!! And ( ... yuck! ....) what do I ( ... yuck! ...) tell you about this (... yuck! ... ... yuck! ... ... yuck! ... ... yuck! ... YUCK!) Well, I'm sorry guys, cannot proceed any further, but hope you got the message ;-)

Nothing more interesting .... Am back to ground zero as of this writing and supposed to report to my manager with weekly status (excluding this weekend stuff).

Thursday, November 25, 2004

Snapshot of desktop

Isn't coding interesting ...


The female in background is Diva Adriana Lima, one of the best models of ... guess what ... VS!

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Ocean's Eleven ...



Nevis Gang on Singhghad Trek on 22nd May 2004.
Standing L-R: Ranjeet, Kiran D, Gaurav, Keyur, Meghana.
Sitting on bar L-R: Prabhat, Amit K, Atul, Deepti N, Mayuresh, Ramesh.
(Photo Title suggested by Suguna M).

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

An interesting question ...

The other day, I was having an interesting conversation with a very learned man. He raised an intriguing point, he said:

Do you EVER have to tell a donkey to behave like a donkey???
Or dog to behave like a dog, or a cat like cat, rat like a rat???
Well, then, why the hell do we have to tell Humans to behave like Humans!

If you see, this argument has got interesting implications! We the HUMANS, claiming to be the supreme-most creation of the creator, the most rational of organisms, the smartest of all, most able of animals, most conscious of the beings, needs to be reminded of his basic most characteristics: Humanity! Where are we heading to? No one knows! America wants to conquer Iraq, Pakistan our Kashmir, politicians want the control over citizen's lives, leaders over the men of his party, teachers over students, scientists over mother nature ... And the chain goes on and on!!! Without ever thinking what shame are they condemning the creator to. Are we the most debauched of HIS creations, contrary to our beliefs? Any answers?

Moral:
Our scientific power has outrun our spiritual power.
We have guided missiles and misguided men.
- Martin Luther

The Alchemist: Paulo Coelho

Just finished reading 'The Alchemist'.
The book is about a shepherd, Santiago, who leaves his homeland in search of treasure hidden near Pyramids, far far away from his homeland. He believes so strongly in his dream, that he abondons his age old profession, at which he is damn good. Childish, as it may sound, but it's a story which says how important it is to hold onto your dreams. The point author tries HARD to drive is the 'Follow your Dreams', come what may! It's all about positive attitude and taking everything in the right spirit, listening to what your heart has to say and imerse yourself 100% into task at hand! My GOD! I just revealed the secert formula for success! Don't believe me ... well ... just read the book and see for yourself how all the universe conspires to help you achieve it, if only you have the persistence to follow it with all the faith you have and believe in your dreams.
If you are interested, you can read an extract here. Feel free to borrow my copy.

Moral:
Hold fast to dreams for if dreams die ...
Life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly!

Monday, November 22, 2004

Nevis' First Anniversary!

Nevis celebrating it's First Anniversary by pool-side (on 2nd April 2004).


Top L-R : Deepti Nambiar, Deepti Khanna, Archana, Meghana, Arun, Atul (gray T-shirt).
Bottom L-R : Suguna, Boney, Amol.
(photo credits Raghu).

Friday, November 19, 2004

Mahabaleshwar!

Splendid view on the way back from Mahabaleshwar! Posted by Hello

Feel free to comment, help me improve this photo.

My First photo on blog!

Arun, Sreeni and Me (Left-to-Right) Posted by Hello


Taken at IBM (Pune) campus.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

Mughal-E-Azam: Gets wonderful in Colour!

This Diwali, I watched Mughal-E-Azam in color! It took about 30 million rupees ($660,000) to colourize the original. And I should tell you it's a must-watch movie! The movie is coloured so well that no one can say it was originally a B&W movie. And of course the movie itself is also *AMAZING*. If you haven’t seen it, go for it NOW! If you like Songs or like Direction, or like Acting, or like Dresses, or like Movie Sets, or like Lyrics, or like Dialogues, or, like Love Stories, or (not to mention) love Madhubala [1] and [2], then let me tell you that this one has it all, it indeed is a FEAST waiting to be devoured! Many of the movies have focused on the ill-fated love between Mughal Prince, Salim (Dilip Kumar) and courtesan Anarkali (Madhubala) but none, till date, have come close to the grandeur of Mughal-E-Azam! I personally consider it to be one of the most meticulosuly directed movie ever made in Bollywood. Of the many facts about the movie, the stunning one is that it took well over a decade to complete it (somewhere around in 1960s), and you will notice no difference in looks of any of the characters! Isn't that splendid! What the hell ... , No!!! Well, then check out for yourself and come back with your comments, I'm waiting to hear from you!

[1] http://www.rumela.com/gallery/madhu_bala
[2] http://www.bollywoodpicturesgallery.com/madhubala.htm


Sunday, November 07, 2004

My Weekend!

My Weekend update!
Played Volleyball after a long-long break due to the on-going corporate football tournaments. Enjoyed a lot but those suckers (read Deccan Gymkhana) have rented the volleyball court to some outsiders, and they occupy the court for most of the time. Occasionally they play match with our guys, but only 6 senior-most of the guys get to play :-( So I have to be satisfied with out practice. Nonetheless it was fun. As a rule (for myself) had gone to play football Sunday morning with the Univ United gang! Only 12 guys turned up but we enjoyed every minute of the game. No movies this weekend, how sad :-( Other than these, I did nothing worthwhile sharing. Looking ahead for a cool week ahead as Diwali is closing in!

Wish you all the bloggers/non-bloggers:
A Very Very Happy Diwali and Prosperous New year well in advance!

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

My Books Wish List (Non-Techie)!

Remember Wish Lists? Well, I was reading someone's blog when I tumbled upon his Wish List link, eagerly I clicked on it. And vooo...! That's what I wanted, a way to maintain Book Wish list and share it with buddies. Here [1] is the my wish-list of non-technical books (Technical books list to follow soon). It's still INCOMPLETE, and I plan to update it regularly, so keep visiting my blog [2] for I'll post a message here as and when I update it. Before this, I've been maintaining my Books Wish List as an M$ Excel sheet (and still maintain it as primary copy). You can sign-up here at Amazon and create your wish list! Nothing great about it, but *THE* best part is that you can share your wish list (yes exactly for the reason that someone might happen to read it and gift a book or two. It works great if you, unlike me :-(, have a GF ;-) LOL ).

Links:
1. If, for some reasons, you cannot view the list, and read the post all through this point, implying you are really interested in having a glimpse of it, go to amazon.com/gp/registry/wishlist-homepage.html/ and type in my mail address (princeatul at gmail dot com) to search for my list.
2. http://the-shaolin.blogspot.com

Monday, November 01, 2004

Geometric Beats Nevis off the Super Six :-(

Well, the game started off pretty well, our captain had made an amazing strategy to the detail of whom to substitute after how many minutes of the game. We had marked their forward (Satish, if I'm not wrong) pretty well, to the extent that he started cursing-n-abusing his team mates for the incompetence of not being able to pass the ball to him. The ball was in their half for most of initial 10-15 minutes. But Alas! The joy was short lived, our defense slackened and this chap got pretty good passes, one of which he converted very well. This brought the morale of the whole team down and in the second half we took one more goal. We played pretty well in the forward, with about 3/4 shots hitting unluckily to the poles and a few just passing past the goal. But that was unavoidable since we had a BIG BIG hole in the mid-field forcing our forwards to carry ball all the way from midfield to the D-line. By the time they reached there, they had no stamina left to judge *where* to hit. We lost with 0-2. But our team's performance has improved a lot compared to what we were during previous tournament organized by Pugmarks. But guys, the spirits are still high and we intend to practice with more rigour. May GOD bless us!

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Gyan: Water Proof vs. Water Resistant!

Ever wondered what the hell is the difference between Water Proof and Water Resistant equipments??? Well, I wondered and google'd extensively sometime back and saved this info. Today morning I was going thro' some info and stumbled upon this and thought might be a good idea to share with others.
Water Proof vs. Water Resistant

Water-resistant means the receiver collar can withstand the effects of rain, snow and other inclement weather. However, it should not be submerged in water, as this may reduce the battery life and cause internal damage to the components.

Waterproof means the component is designed to withstand submersion in water.

Hope this makes things a bit clearer. Well, so you might be wondering what on earth made me look for that difference. Well, a few days back I bought a new watch the Casio G-Shock 12 Beasts (here is the specs, and [1], [2], [3] is how it looks), which is water resistant. It made me wonder what is waterproof when the shopkeeper insisted that it's *not* waterproof but water resistant.

Links:
[1] http://www.ari-web.com/shop/watch/g-shock/L/g-7100-1jf.htm
[2] http://www.creativewatch.co.uk/g-shock-casio-g-7100-1ver-large.jpg
[3] http://image.www.rakuten.co.jp/parksgallery/img1006832227.jpeg

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Collateral: Tom Cruise and Jamie Foxx

Collateral (n.) Serving to support or corroborate.
A large portion of “Collateral” takes place inside the taxi (how boring). Tom Cruise sports as a hard-hearted contract killer assigned a task to knock off five people (apparently key witnesses to some crime committed by off-shore narco-trafficking cartel) in single evening. It looks so atrocious that Tom kills everyone and anyone who comes his way. On this killing spree, circumstances force him to hijack Max' cab and Max (Jamie Foxx) becomes "Collateral", an unwilling accomplice. The relationship between the Max and Tom is strange and twisted, never ever culminating into anything concrete. They eventually become inter-dependent in a way none of them imagined. The movie is NOT at all action-packed as might be advertised. If anything, the background music for most of the movie is to be appreciated [rather the only thing to be appreciated ;-) ] Though I won't reveal the end, it's more than pathetic, unexpected but not for good.

Movie is as boring as hell, tooooo much babbling and lack of any actresses only adds to boredom :-(.
In short NOT worth the viewers' TIME and MONEY.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

M$ IE (Internet Explorer) SUCKS!!!

IE *SUCKS* for sure and my belief only got reinforced yesterday night when I spent about 2+ hours fixing my sluggish home computer. No, it's not slow coz I've a Celeron 400MHz, 64MB Ram and Win 98. It was working fine until it's sluggishness got onto my nerves. Once I learnt that my brother uses IE to browse net, I looked no further. I knew that %&^*ing IE must have let in lots of spywares and unwanted programs on my system. I grep'ed through sys directories, startup config and Add/Remove programs only to find thousands (I literally mean thousands!!!) of unwanted files, couple of unwanted/suspicious programs and startup entries. It was a gruelling task to get rid all of them and my system is now back to it's normal speed. Thank GOD my Hard Disk hasn't crashed (Touch Wood) which I strongly suspected for my PC slowdown.
Well, why the hell am I telling you all this!
So here's the MORAL: Trash that *&^#ing IE and get Opera[1] or Firefox[2]. These have hoards of features that IE cannot match. Hiding images, built-in Pop-up blocking and Tabbed browsing being my FAVOURITE! Hiding images enables me save browsing time since it doesn't download images to be displayed and saves me embarassement when it doesn't display those kinky gifs found on many sites!
Well, here's[3] more why you should use them.

[1] http://www.opera.com/ (download here)
[2] http://www.mozilla.org/products/firefox/ (download here)
[3] http://www.mozilla.org/products/firefox/why/

Shaving Tips for Men

"SHAVING," an ancient practice of raking a sharp blade across your face every single day of your life from your early teens!
Well, it indeed is important to shave the right way to keep looking sexy!
This [1] explains Do's and Don'ts. You might even want to have a look at another[2] link as well ;-) And this [3] seems to be a nice link too, didn't read it though.

[1]http://www.bullz-eye.com/mens_grooming/2003/maleface_shaving.htm
[2]http://velvetdragon.com/etc/shave.html
[3]http://www.sosuave.com/home/feedback/shaving.htm

Sunday, October 17, 2004

I *love* Samurai Swords!

The movie (Kill Bill -I) did add fuel to my already undying burning passion to own a fine Samurai Sword (chk this & this & this & this ...), which was kindled when I saw the sword for the first time with my Sensei (Karate Master) some six years ago. I bet Samurai is one of the world's FINEST and MOST FAMOUS swords! Wish GOD gifts me with an opportunity to buy one from it's very homeland, Japan! Amen!

Watched Kill Bill Vol-1

Spent most of my weekend playing football tournament, which I've already covered in much detail here & here. Apart from that, I watched Kill Bill Vol-1.
Don't worry, this time I won't bother you with the nitty-gritties of the movie, otherwise you would come to believe this as an exclusively movie-review site ;-) I'll stick to stating the best and the worst scenes in the movie. The BEST of the scenes is when Hattori Hanzo, one of the master swordsmiths making finest of the Samurai Swords in Okinawa, presents Uma Thurman with his best workmanship to date in a ceremonial fashion. And the most preposterous scene is when she goes to avenge O-Ren Ishii where she fights 20/30 odd skilled fighters killing/disabling all of them single handedly!!! I could have taken it had the stunt been pulled by Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Jet Li or Chow Yun Fat. And apart from that what's more sick is that move is tooooo gory, Yuck! But all-in-all, a nice movie to watch.

Miraculous victory against Tata Technologies!!!

Ya, you read it correct, we have beaten'em, with 1-0!!! Calling it miraculous not because it happened as a result of some ground breaking miracle, of course unless you call constant practice a miracle :-) It's miraculous for the fact that Tata is one of the toughest teams in our pool and most of us at Nevis being newbies. Tata had control of the ball for more than 60% of the game, with first half ending at 0-0. Sometime after the start of second half, Ranjeet (captain, a man with relentless will to win) made an amazing pass along the left flank and the ball landed to be in Amit Singh's control, one of the most promising forwards in Nevis' team. Moving along the flank he dribbled everyone coming his way and started moving inwards, in the direction of the goal, when he was intercepted by one of the defenders. OOps :-( He could have easily cut him off and then taken a direct shot at the goal. But not wanting the glory of scoring at the cost of chance of conversion, he saw another of the forwards, Amit Shindore, rushing in. He lofted the ball towards him, ensuring the he doesn't have to foul with an off-side. Making full use of his well built body, Amit Shindore, kept the keeper from disturbing his poise and simply headed the ball! Whoosh!!! Bang!!! And there went the ball directly into the nets!!! Yuppie!!! Indeed an amazing goal! We are now leading with 1-0!

With only a few minutes to go and tension mounting on the opposite team, they made some amazing moves, with almost 6 players rushing into our 'D' area, until our defenders got them by balls by foiling all their attempts to rush into strategic positions by means of 1-2 1-2 passing. Not to forget Shrirang who almost paralyzed their left flank making attempted attacks from that side useless. So much were they pissed off and desperate to score that they started losing patience and taking direct shots from half-line when they could have easily cut through the defenders directly into the 'D'. They did take some good shots, but good enough only to either land on poles or intercepted by one of the defenders. One was indeed fatal, when the ball came in rushing and I had full chance of deflecting it. I kicked the ball with all the strength I had only to result in feeble tap under the ball. whoosh! The ball lofted high enough beyond the keepers reach :'-( Oops, what the *%#$ (I know everyone almost said that ;-) )!!! I bet every heart there skipped a beat. And then ... Phew! Thank God! The ball landed just beyond the top pole! Nevis, rather I, was lucky!

Our gaolie did great job of defending the goal inspite of being injured at hands. It was cheering squad that kept our morale high and created pressure on the opposite team. Three cheers for Nevis: Hip Hip Hurray! Hip Hip Hurray! Hip Hip Hurray! Insiders news, now, after 2 wins, Kapil has promised to sponsor us a dinner with booze!


Saturday, October 16, 2004

Nevis beats Ensim 2-0!!!

Hurray!!! Nevis thrashed Ensim, yes I said thrashed, because the ball was in Ensim's half for more than 98% of the time :-) Our (Nevis') goalkeeper touched the ball only once in the whole game. First goal was scored by Sagar B (vice captain) as a penalty kick, which we earned when one of their defenders put the hand in between when Chidanand kicked the ball in the goal. Second goal was scored after half time by Amit Singh.
It was the first victory ever for Nevis in two of the tournaments we played. In fact first time since last all games have we scored a goal :-)
We have a match against Tata Technologies tomorrow morning and I just pray for repeated performance from Nevis!

Thursday, October 14, 2004

My Fav aliases/settings in BASH

Some aliases/settings in bash to make life simpler-n-interesting ;-)
Nothing special about them, just wanted to share'em with buddies.

# Force *interactive* cp and rm
alias cp='cp -i'
alias rm='rm -i'
# List only directories
alias dir='ls -Lla | grep ^d'
# Grep with colour!
alias grep='grep --color=auto'
# List all hidden files/dirs i.e. files starting with 'dot'
# but not '.' and '..'

alias l.='ls -d \.??*'
# Conveniences
alias path='echo -e ${PATH//:/\\n}'
alias du='du -h'
alias df='df -kh'
alias j='jobs -l'

# The 'ls' family (borrowed from ABS Guide's sample .bashrc)
alias ls='ls -hF --color'
# Add colors for file type recognition
alias lx='ls -lXB' # Sort by extension
alias lk='ls -lSr' # Sort by size
alias la='ls -Al' # Show hidden files
alias lr='ls -lR' # Recursive ls
alias lt='ls -ltr' # Sort by date
alias lm='ls -al |more' # Pipe through 'more'
alias tree='tree -Cs' # Nice alternative to 'ls'

# And Now the *killer* setting!!! Set vi editing mode on shell prompt!
# This is *THE* best I can have in the shell!!!
set -o vi

Do share yours!

Monday, October 11, 2004

The Terminal: Steven Speilberg & Tom Hanks

Yes, the movie is worth watching, but of course, only if you like Hanks. It is far from bad, but at times quite obvious and bollywood-ish at other times :-(
Despite all this, what I liked in the movie??? Tom Hanks (Viktor Navorksi) has acted very well, speaking broken English for most of the movie. The direction at airport is done pretty well. For Cathy fans, nothing much in there, but she, for sure, look DAMN sssssss....sweet! (I know what you guessed here, but hard luck lol)
To sum up, this movie cannot be rated as Mr. Speilberg's finest of the movies, it barely crawls towards 'Good', but if wanna kill time and/or like Hanks, it is a 'must-see'. It's kind of comedy movie with lots of emotional stuff into it. Personally I expected much more from Mr. Speilberg.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

My Weekend!

Alas! Weekend is over. But all-in-all it was a nice weekend.
Here is the summary of what all I did!
Saturday:
As a part of Football tournament, had match with Cybage and we lost to them with a score of 1-0. We did perform well but failed to convert the chances. On returning home, I loafed until evening and decided to watch "The Terminal" after my dinner, it was quite refreshing. Read out for my views on the movie here!
No volleyball this Sat, was way tooooo tired to go for it, how sad :'-(
Sunday, as usual, I played football until I was dead tired. Took Jacuzzi and Steam bath to refresh myself. Me and my brother played good hosts to my uncle who was with us for breakfast. Since my lunch was ready, I had BRUNCH! What the heck is BRUNCH? Well it's the combination of BReakfast and lUNCH, in short, when you skip breakfast though you are very hungry, and take lunch instead it is called the "BRUNCH". No, it's not my invention, I borrowed this terminology from my cousin! I spent rest of my sunday relaxing with Atlas Shrugged and doing lil household chores.
Am back to office early morning today, kicking and blogging!

Thursday, October 07, 2004

The Village: Mr. M.Night

Hey buddies, I saw ‘The Village’, and irrespective of what views (generally negative) people hold about that movie, I rate it as "class one” movie! Don’t expect too much of horror, nor should you expect it to be fast paced like other Holly movies. It’s damn slow, but the direction is of unprecedented quality. Yes, even without any of the special effects, Mr. N. Shamalayan has done an amazing job of directing it meticulously. If you see the cast, you will feel as if each one of them was *born* only for his/her role! Bryce Dallas Howard as Ivy Walker who acted blind woman is the one to look out for! If you have an eye for details, this *is* the movie for you. If you haven’t seen it yet, … yes you guessed it right, I would urge you to see it once. And guess what... it has got a *cute* love story too! Well, not kinda romantic movie, though. Well, if this is not all, it has got great cinematography, dialogues and proper use of sound!
Warning! Don't expect it to be as great as Sixth Sense, it will only disappoint you :-(