For the heck of it

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Ms. Pratibha Naithani (and Forum Against Obscenity) goes nuts!

I was just reading through one of my favourite tabloids apna Mid Day, when I came across a news story that announced "Stop this nudity, violence and sex!" The article is in fact a letter that was sent to Mid Day by "Forum Against Obscenity", of which Ms. Pratibha Naithani (a political science professor of some Mumbai college) is a part of. The letter states that Mid Day has become an obscene newspaper and resembles a pornographic magazine such as Playboy(!). Now only if somebody could throw some light and explain the meaning of "pornography" to Ms. Naithani and the "crusaders" (read losers) from Forum Against Obscenity.

Well, I have been reading Mid Day for the past 15 years and I really like the crispy style of reporting they do. I really think that Ms. Pratibha Naithani and Forum Against Obscenity need a brain transplant immediately. This only goes to show that Ms. Pratibha Naithani and the Forum Against Obscenity, can do anything for cheap publicity.

The Forum Against Obscenity claims that Mid Day only writes about "sex". The letter further adds - "What kind of journalism is this? Where are your ethics of journalism? Where is your regard for the law of the land? If you think that by writing only about sex and by printing semi nude photographs of women, by titillating the readers, by writing abuses, you are able to sell your newspaper, then do not call your self a newspaper, become a sex magazine like Playboy."

I ask - "What about freedom of speech and expression?" May be it's time we started covering up ancient statues and scriblings found at many temples and historic sites in India. Going by what Ms. Pratibha Naithani and the Forum Against Obscenity wants, everyone in India should destroy their television sets and refrain from watching any TV channel. All media houses should shut shops.

I couldn't control my laughter when I read the letter on Mid Day's website. I think Ms. Pratibha Naithani and the Forum Against Obscenity have totally gone nuts! I would advice them both to go get a life and stop this bullshit about ethics once and for all.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Say the Colour. Not the Word!

Here's a perfect example of Left-Right Conflict, as claimed by many web sites. No, am not talking about some politics involving some leftist and rightist parties. According to most web sites on the cyberspace, the image below shows how a conflict between the left and the right brain works.

"While you start identifying the colours, your brain also starts reading out the words, before you even realise it. Why is it so difficult? Because the right half of your brain is trying to say the colour, while the left side of your brain is trying to say the word," says one web site.

However, I believe that this can not be an example of Left-Right conflict. Well, if I were to identify colours slowly, like a 4 year old kid would do, then I get all the colours right, without ending up reading the words.

In fact this phenomenon is called The Stroop Effect. The famous "Stroop Effect" is named after J. Ridley Stroop who discovered this strange phenomenon in the 1930s. So, if you're like most people, your first inclination was to read the words, 'red, yellow, green...,' rather than the colours they're printed in, 'blue, green, red...'

For instance, for the word BLUE, you should say "RED". But sometimes you end up reading the word, than identifying the colour.

Vennilave... Velli velli nilave

Nowadays, I am hooked onto this song from Vettaiyaadu Vilaiyaadu. I also quite like the songs Nerrupae and Karka Karka.

Vennilave however reminds me of "Punnagai" from the film "Alaipayuthe". The brief guitar note now and then in Vennilave also reminds of an 80's song by Laid Back, called "Don't Run From Your Shadow". Coincidence? I think not.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Sivaji... punch lines

Some speculative punch dialogues from thalaivar's next movie - Sivaji - The Boss! I got this list as a forward from one of my friends, who's also an ardent Rajni fan. Yenjaaaaaaaaay!!!

Dekhoji, naan thaan Shivaji

Singathe konja mudiyathe...Sivajiya minja mudiyathe..

kanna...aalu rounda iruntha podhathu...aatathula all roundera irukkanum...

Kanna, naan pakka dhan software, erangunan mavane hardware....

Sachin adicha sixer indha Shivaji adicha stretcher

amaidhikku babaji adidhadikku sivaji!!

Naan 1 centimetre dhooratthukk nallavannaa 20 kilometre distancekku kettavan

Naan nenacha athu nadantha mathiri, naan nadantha athu jeycha mathiri

Thanneerai Killa Mudiyuma? Sivajiya vella mudiyuma?

paambe patha padaye nadungum,indha SivaJiya pathe pambe nadungum!

phone adicha ringu, inda shivaji adicha sangu

Kanna andha sivajikku nadikka mattum dhan theriyum, indha sivajiku nadikkavum theriyum adikkavum theriyum

unaku Aandavan vekkaraan da date annaiku unaku Shivaji vekkaraan paar vettu

Naan nallavanukku sami, Nayavanjaganukku tsunami

Kanna, vitukoduthavan ennaikum kettathillai, kettavan ennaikum vittukoduthathillai

Solli adikiravan veeran, sollama adikiravan kozhai, naan sollavum maaten, adikkavum maatan... aana konnuduvan

Nallavanukku naan DHARMAN Kettvanukku naan YEMa dharman da

A Sandstorm and a Desert Safari

Well, it was a mixed experience- both adventurous and frightening. On Friday I went to an event sponsored by Western Digital, the hard disk drive manufacturer. The event was supposed to be an adventurous day out - we were to meet at the Jebel Ali Shooting Club for a quick hands on experience of using a shotgun on clay pegions, before heading off to a "secret place" - a distant desert spot near the Sharjah border for Desert Safari.

I was accompanied by Shravan - the Technical Editor of PC Magazine and Bevill - the Marketing Personnel. On our way to Jebel Ali, we encountered intense sandstorm. This was my first sandstorm experience during my one year stay in Dubai and boy was it frightening! Strong winds blowing everywhere and sand surrounding Shravan's speeding Ford Mustang. Some images here.

Well we sure made it safely to the Shooting Club, and tried our hands at targeting clay pegions. The courteous instructors at the Shooting Club gave us all the instructions needed - right from handling the shotgun to loading it with cartridges and shooting the targets. It was a hell of an experience. I managed to shoot 7 targets out of the total 20. Shravan and Bevill meanwhile did 8 each. Bevill specially managed six targets in a row - not a bad number for a beginner!

We then headed off to IBN Batuta Mall to park our cars, where a caravan of four wheel drives were waiting to pick us up for a date with the desert. After an hour's drive, we finally reached a camp site, where the beasts (Toyota Land Cruisers) were ready for rock and roll in the desert, with us seated inside them. Nice experience altogether - it was my first trip to a Desert Safari and I was really amazed by the kind of skills these drivers had. They had total control over the 4WDs and the Desert. Some images here.

Nice car stunts, good camel rides, hot belly dancer and a sumptuous dinner, sums it all.


Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Vettayadu Vilayadu...

If rumours are to be believed, Kamal Hassan's most awaited movie Vettayadu Vilayadu should see the light of day sometime soon. I have been waiting anxiously for this movie to release - especially after sampling the awesome songs the movie has. Well, we already have a genious in Harris Jeyaraj - so the songs of the movie are anyways a hit already. Some of the brilliant songs in the movie include "Paartha Mudhal", "Manjal Veiyil", "Uyirile Enathu", "Karka Karka" and "Neruppae". Well, this list covers all the songs of the film!

As for the story - the movie revolves around a CBI Officer played by Kamal in the film. Following a horrendous incident in Tamil Nadu, the CBI steps in, and sends its officer to the US on the trail of the culprit. How the cop, using his brain and brawn, tracks the anti-social gang and its leader is narrated with a lot of action scenes thrown in. Along the way, the cop meets Jyothika and falls in love with her.

Majority of the movie has been shot in New York, with the climax shot in an interior village of Tamil Nadu. The movie has been directed by Gautham Menon, who gave super hits such as Minnaley and Kaaka Kaaka. The awesome music is by Harris Jeyaraj.

My favourite by far in the entire album remains "Manjal Veiyil".

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

How dumb could people get??

I was browsing through apna Mid Day, when I stumbled into this news item. The news item ellaborates on how a couple in Mumbai, who were engaged and about to be married soon, lost their cell phone in an auto rickshaw. Well, people lose cell phone everyday - but if I had a cell phone with an MMS video on it, which I had shot during a private moment with my girl, I would guard my cell phone with all my life.

This couple forgot their Nokia 3230 camera mobile phone in an auto rickshaw, while alighting from it. Now they have nowhere to run. It's just a wait and watch game and it would be worse. The couple haven't yet found the phone, which contains clips they shot of themselves in private, as an experiment. They are now paranoid that somebody will find it and circulate the images / video clips.

Some tips for people shooting MMS clips of themselves:
1. Never shoot an MMS clip containing you or your partner in intimacy.
2. If you do however feel the urge to shoot such a video clip, store it in a secure place and hide it away so that nobody gets their hands on them. Remember, an intimate MMS clip of yours, on your phone is the worst mistake you could ever make.
3. If your phone has a Bluetooth or Infrared function, make sure its turned off and not in a "discoverable" mode. There are sick people out there with the tools required to hack into your mobile phone through these wireless technologies.
4. If your phone ever gets infected by a virus, be sure to delete the MMS clip, before you send it off for servicing.
5. Never install any unexpected application received by MMS message from any senders (including your friends!). It could be a virus, which would forward all the contents of your phone, including the clips, to an unknown recipient.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Where are the missing GBs?

Ahem... GBs as in GigaBytes and not Guest Books! Let me ask you a question - how many times have you observed that a flash disk or a hard disk drive, provided you with lesser storage space than advertised, after you partitioned and formatted it? I guess everytime, right? After months of speculation, just yesterday I bought an 80GB Samsung notebook drive to use it as my backup mobile hard disk. The drive claimed a data transfer rate of 5,400rpm (rotations per minute) and came with an 8MB buffer (onboard memory). The storekeeper offered me either this one or a Toshiba hard disk, which came with a data transfer rate of 4,200rpm, one year warranty and no buffer at all. In contrast, the Samsung one came with a 3-year warranty. The price difference between both the drives wasn't much and so I settled for a 80GB Samsung hard disk. I also bought an external USB hard disk casing to go with it and paid 400 AED (Arab Emirate Dirhams) for the entire deal.

Nice deal ofcourse. But once I partitioned the drive into two and formatted it, I was in for a surprise. One of the partitions showed me a usable storage space of 38.9GB and the other showed me 35.4GB. I paid for 80GB hard disk space and in return I get only 74.3GB. Where did the remaining 5.7GB go???

Well, there's nothing wrong with the hard disk it seems. There are various possibilities as to why a hard disk would show lesser storage capacity than it's actually supposed to show. Experts say that as a general rule, you can expect to lose about one-quarter of the space on a disk drive to things such as formatting and hidden partitions. You'll probably lose a smaller percentage on a smaller disk and more on a larger one. You might also lose toward the high side if the disk is the main disk on a system that came with the operating system installed and toward the low end if it's a second or third disk you've installed after you bought the computer. In other words, if you got 225 Gb out of a 250 Gb disk, you beat the guesstimate.

According to industry experts the missing capacity goes into several places such as contributing the space for setting up file tables, hidden partitions, storing critical system files, and so on. Also, its no brainer that one megabyte (MB)equals 1,024 kilobytes (KB), by industry specifications 1 MB is measured as 1,000,000 bytes. This might also be another reason, why your hard disk ends up showing lesser number of MBs.

Read more about it here...