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January 18th, 2007

12:37 am - Full circle of the British Raj !!
Today I was proud !!!
Shilpa Shetty, one of India's popular Film Actress and a contestant of the popular UK show Big Brother is indirectly involved in stirring the wrath of Indians, in India and abroad.

In this reality show, Shilpa Shetty is being slandered and bantered for her apparent Indian accent and Indian origin. What may have been just a regular brawl between two women have cause about 10,000 Indians from the world over to show their indignation over this.

The Television channel, Channel 4, has also come under this wrath for "not doing anything" about this.

About a 100 years ago, the pompous British Raj ruled over us Indians. And today, a mere comment on the Indian accent is causing a stir even in the Parliamentary House in England.

Today, with India growing to be the second fastest growing Economy , a Nuclear country and an IT super power , no country can dare to anger it. Least of all the British since the Indian population in UK is increasing every year and has now reached substantial numbers.

From licking the boots of a rich country's Kings, to ruling over them Imperialistically, to leaving the country in shame, to finally fearing to insult a single citizen of the same country, the British Raj is about to complete a full circle.

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September 11th, 2006

11:04 am - My Near Death Experience
Most people will think I am exaggerating after reading this article. However, others who hate the metal-horned devil as much as I do , will compassionately agree.

It all began when I mistook the Judas and the disguised Iron Maiden (not the band�..the actual medieval weapon of ancient and instant death) as nothing but merely a colleague at work and a motor-bike(read : any two wheeler with a motor) respectively.

Oh how na�ve I was to misunderstand the malicious and sadistic invitation for the dance of death. �Hey, we�ll go together after work. I have a bike and we stay close by�.
I bet everything I own , from my meaningless collection of adapters to the last hair on my body, that if that sentence were recorded and played backwards , it would sound something like �Come Raseel, I�ll try and kill you in the most horrendous and terrifying way known or imagined by human kind.�

Well, nonetheless , there I was. On a motor-bike from the dust clad Saki-Naka towards Mahim via the Dance of Death.

From the moment we started, he decided that his right foot was a thing he would keep staring at, especially whenever we are at a good 60kmph and the traffic is pretty tight. He also thought that I would, for some reason, enjoy the jerky and abrupt braking style, which seemed to me that he must have picked up from day-one of driving bikes.

I was uncomfortable from the start, sitting on that horrid thing. I was getting cramps all over my thighs and before I could adjust myself to it, he managed to convey to me telepathically that we should both balance the mo-bike�.together, i.e., every time he bends on the left I should straighten out my legs whilst bending towards the right.

Soon after the gut-wrenching pain on both my thighs had subsided (or was it that I got used to it?) and we avoided banging thirteen other vehicles and 45 (lost count after that) innocent pedestrians, we reached a clearer patch of road. He had warmed up by then and suddenly sped towards, what initially looked like a��man . He benevolently let the woman live and continued his ascent of gears. A moment after that, my heart assumed the role of the rats and my body, that of a sinking ship. In front of us, lying without a care in the world was a big fat �. Speed-breaker. Now, I am of the opinion that these particular lethargic species tend to turn up only when you are either in a hurry or when you are speeding really fast. I was naturally, in the latter case. But our hero-on-wheels thought it was an ego issue to slow down for a bourgeoisie lump of stripped tar. He just didn�t slow down. And a moment later I knew what it felt like to fly. Only, I was too busy concentrating on my entire life flashing before my eyes. The thud with which I landed (mind you, he landed comfortably ) has now left me unable to breed. The loud and painful �T-H-U-D�, by the way, was from inside my pants. Oh yeah, I could also see stars and little fluorescent spots dancing in front of my eyes. For my spinning brain, everything else was just a purple haze.

By the time I got out from that lovely coma, we were on the highway. We were doing 500kmph then, but somehow the bike�s tachometer showed 80��must have been broken from our little episode with the breaker, I�m sure !!!

At that point I realized that the man driving the bike was a man who made his own rules� A man who did not believe in staying within limits�.A man who did not just believe what others told him�..basically, A man who did not believe in Gravity. He had completely refused its existence and hence was bending and turning the bike as his august mind wished. My previously out-of-focus �entire-life� was now passing before my eyes vividly. I was sure that death wasn�t far away. It was just titillating with my soul before flying away with it.

To top it all were all these soothing noises around me. The immensely calming roar of the carbon-monoxide spitting trucks , the long, shrill honking of the irritating Maruti�s , the spurting, coughing snare of the auto rickshaws, the rattling of the bike I was sitting on �.. the list just goes on. The embarrassingly lame thing was, that in my I�m-sure-I�m-gonna-die moments, it seemed like all these vehicles around me were menacingly staring at me and abusing me in their own automobile lingo.

At he same time, my chauffer had decided to play the game of My-motorbike-tires-must-kiss-all-the-potholes-and-ditches-on-the-way. And trust me, he was amazingly good at it.
Of course, once in a while, the motorbike used to come to life and decide to go on its own course (these were usually the moments when my driver chose to stare at his right ankle or foot). The motorbike, unlike its driver, was a pro-Gravity-arian and kept trying to hug the ground.

Traffic Rules was another thing that our hero did not believe in. Going from rightmost side of the road to the leftmost side without the slightest change in speed or regard for others was a matter of habit to him. Signals, he must have decided, were a condescending restriction for all those morons who bore the stupid and worthless thing called civic-sense in that mythical thing called the brain.

Finally we reached Mahim. I had seen what hell looked like and come to terms with the fact that I was not gonna live. Death, in a horrific and excruciatingly painful way, was now inevitable. So, when I saw Mahim creek I knew it was just Satan�s way of teasing his subjects before he stole away their souls to eternal damnation. In human language we call it �Playing with your prey�.

In another 15 mins. of uneventful ( only compared to the aforementioned) ride, I was below my building. When I got down from the bike, I thought I would never ever be able to walk with straight legs ever again. My pelvis was begging for euthanasia. He bade me farewell in a seemingly normal manner, but I know that his bike was saying something on the lines of �Go live your miserable life you rat, you are too lowly to be killed by me.�

That night I kissed my house, my pillow, my computer�.basically everything that came my way. I have never slept more peacefully my entire life���and oh by the way, I hate riding motorbikes.

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10:56 am - Consciencs Modulation
What we know about TDM or Time Division Multiplexing is that each task is assigned a designated slot of time for performing it. So basically what a processor does in an multi-threading or multi-tasking environment is that in one......lets assume, nanosec, it performs one task, then another in the following nanosec and so on and so forth. However, at the outset, the end user feels that the processor is performing, solely the task which he has asked it to do. The arrogant (or should we say ignorant?) user, thus presumes with audacity, that the processor is a single-tasking device dedicated only for his whims and no one else's.

Now comes my wierd analogy!! Humor me , if you will !!!

The so called "abstract" conscience is alive. A means and an end in itself. What for centuries, people have been wondering is the driving force that is responsible for the creation and sustenance of life,...is a single enigmatic entity, the CONSCIENCE.

A single entity? How so you ask? Well maybe the Conscience is that processor which is persistently multi-tasking, the only differnce being that the array of tasks of the OS are now represented by every know human being in the world. It is acting with respect to one person for only a given period of time. Then it "jumps" to the next and so and so forth.

Feel free at this stage to laugh, shrug my arrogance of comparison and then eventually ponder over the aforementioned.

Thus , if we get down to a strictest approximation possible, no two people make a morally right decision at the same time. So when the Conscience is acting as the Purgatory in one person's mind, and if perchance it happens that in that minuscule of a fraction of a second, another person needs to make a moral decision.............he can't !!

Thus he goes morally wrong,....just like a signal attenuates or distorts without proper checksums. The CRC (Cyclic Redundancy Check) method is busy running its alogorithm in someone else's mind.

Hence, as is evident in Real Time, there are more moral Wrongs commited than moral Rights, explaining the current state of affairs of the World.

This analogy will also explain why sometimes making a certain moral decision is 'difficult'. The conscience is obviously not in our mind, although neurotic-pulses have already been sent asking for the Conscience's control.
Without the Conscience the brain is nothing but a CPU filled with co-processors. Without the main processors, they will just perform the mechanical functions like math operations.

At this stage, I'm pretty sure you can imagine a few more analogies about the Conscience and the Processor, such as prority logic, speed updation , etc. If not,...think about it !!!

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10:55 am - The Ambience
Friday, January 30, 2004

It�s cold���.. Harsh, coarse, rugged cold !!!
The sensations are obviously manifold!!
A thousand needles blunted and trained not to hurt the most-sensitive fabric. An experience, encapsulating constant waves of that addictive harshness. The cold is not an imagination. It�s a part of the ambience.

The time of the day would befuddle even those who haven�t slept. Dusk it can be,�. Dawn, a distinct possibility, ��..a cloudy afternoon isn�t too far fetched either!!
The lights are surrounded only by the naked penumbra. They break the wavelengths into countless scattered but na�ve children. The halo is nothing less of divinity.

The smell�ahh the unforgettable olfactory experience!!! It is not everyday that one can actually smell the universe�.. Smell the soul!!
The warm exhale on the upper lip is enough to kindle a thousand fires.

The distant discussions of the birds are almost inaudible. The footsteps on gravel (oh that mind-bogglingly beautiful sound!!!), over-shadow them. It�s hard to differentiate the waves from the metaphoric ones!!

The surroundings are so nakedly inept, they resemble a truth��.of the naked kind.
But the vivid intricacies terminate the misleading!!

It�s almost vulgar to assume serenity in these conditions�. to build an impenetrable fortress with neither intention nor content. But the sin is quite understandable, not to mention pardonable.

This, I proclaim, is the time when the mythical SELF unleashes itself. It�s an unforgiving experience.
Perversions of truth,�..(or any versions for that matter) , do not exist in these moments. A perfect ambience cannot tolerate imperfections, baring exceptions to none.

The expectoration begins���������������������It ends.

Retribution was never sought as passionately as now !!

The vulgarity is gloriously untouched, if not empowered. It is embellished forthwith only by its vanity.

Silence��and not a moment too soon !

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10:53 am - Bombay
Thursday, September 30, 2004

Bombay is an amalgamated mass of all the seven sins…at least that’s what its geographical history says. The phenomenon of the seven islands forming this enigmatic yet charismatic land, is often mistaken as a coincidence. Well it IS coincident that an atom of Oxygen and another of Hydrogen can form the alcohol(OH) group. But then, do we term Scotch Whiskey coincident too?

The blood-curling wails of the highly affluent, intermingled with the rampant and sundry celebrations of the eternally poor are superceded only by the placid calmness of the over-populated middle class. Bombay, with its glorified set of idiosyncranies, is perhaps the only city in India where the sexual vivacity is evident in all the three sexes, interchangeably. It is so self-absorbed in leading its fast paced exisitence that the millions of overlapping festivals of the holistic populace can be interrupted, only briefly by the misdemeanors of the dark and ruthless underworld.

The dawn of a fog-wrapped, dew-sprinkled, monsoon morning, smelling of the polluted, wet sand embellished only by the scaringly identical tea-stalls and soft murmurs of a waking populace, is one of the many things that only a true Bombayite can fall in love with everyday of his life. Of course, this is well-balanced by a lava of hatred that flows from him due to the following of an extermely hot, humid and/or wet day which habitually gives the meterologists a run for their money.

But lo and behold, life is waking up and according to its routine, should start adapting. There are two kinds of species on this planet(city is just a misnomer) : the one which works very hard to become successful : the pragmatists, and the other, which puts in an equal amount of dedication doing absolutely nothing: the nihilists. The funny thing is, both live similar lifestyles and are blind followers of the principles of hedonism.

It is said that there is a thin line of demarcation between the good thing and the bad, the right deeds and the wrong. In Bombay, there runs another one at right angles(pun unintended) which has disolved the purgatory and divided the individual's thought process into the condescending “I want to exist” and the irresistible “I want to live”. Death, here, is not an option, just a distraction for the sake of brevity.

Bombay is an addiction like none other. It is a nightmare one wants to dream every night; a self-consuming contradiction that is absolute. Its the perfect blend of the disillusionment of hope and faith, the strength of perseverance and determination, the balance of possibilities and failiure, the mirage of humanity and patriotism, the greatness of intelligentsia and affluence,the comedy of fradulence and the tragedy of survival.A city so confident of its identity crisis that it bequeaths an individuality to one and all.

In an attempting to describe this beloved city of mine , I experienced the same frustrations that I experienced when trying to imagine infinity and failing invariably to so.

So Die and experience Heaven, don't waste your time reading about it?

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August 22nd, 2006

01:05 am - Sounds (Part 1)
This was an Entry in one of my earlier Blogs, but I like it so much I decided I'm gonna migrate and continue it here.

Sounds (Part 1)The first things I would like to bring to your notice is that, whilst you are reading this BLOG, mentally you are actually "listening" to it being read out to you. Subtlety at its very best, I say !!
Sound and Silence! The line of demarcation according to me is so fine that one often tends to mix one with the other. The proverbial “deafening silence” is hence not as metaphoric as you think.
But enough comparison of the two. Lets just discuss the former.

The clatter of rain drops on window panes (or on anything, for that matter), the whooshing of the crops or leaves on a farm, the incessant waves, a cool breeze or an unseen bird cooing to its own self in darkness of the early morning dawn. Attempting to tell you the sheer beauty of all these sonic phenomena is as unnecessary as trying to explain how wet water is. So these obvious occurrences are not included in the scope of this essay.

The sounds I want to divert your attention to are about the other unsung actions. These sounds, are transient in nature. They are not the types which you can enjoy for hours on end. They do not exist for hours, some, not even a few seconds. But yet, when you realize their existence, which most of us subconsciously do, the effect is highly soothing to the brain. Of course, not many will agree to my choices of “beautiful sounds”, but that’s just going to be their first instinctive reaction.
Its going to be really difficult to pen down the description of the sounds, but I’m hoping the what might be left incomplete in words will be fulfilled by your memory and imagination.

One of my top favorites is the dry, acrid sound your lips make, in conjunction with the smoke, while inhaling a cigarette puff on a dry night. The drier the lips and the ambience in general, the more spectacular is the sound.

Then there is the sound of shoes while walking on a gravel path. The clinking and the clacking produce a mixture of tones, that is simple irreproducible.

And then how could I forget the sound we so often hear in sci-fi movies, of all the gadgetry opening or closing. The really low, high-pitch sound of technology itself, complemented only by the sudden jerky stop. If it’s a hydraulic machine, the sound is only but embellished.

How about the sound of destruction then? Not the usual breaking or exploding of things. Those come in Category 1, the obviously beautiful ones. I wish to bring to attention the sound of fire. Especially a paper burning. Not with high crackles and bursts of spark, but slow, patient, inevitable burning. This sound is fine, that many may be misled into thinking either that no such sound exists or that it is the sound of paper crumpling up before burning. I would advise a re-inspection.

As long as we are talking about destruction on such a fin level, let us also pay out tribute to bubbles bursting. Though it is possible to ape a bubble popping, I think you should remember that it can only be done on a much higher decibel level. A soap bubble bursting is inimitable.

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July 20th, 2006

02:54 am - Ban the Blog Ban !!!
Ban Blogging, will ya ?
And that too just when I have started getting the hang of it ?
Like I'm not 2 years late already that I need these hindrances in between.

And, all that apart... no one has the right to Ban my blogging anyways.

You want to ban my blogging? Tie me up in shackles , destroy the computers of the world, disconnect the Internet, give me a 12" Mozarella Cheese Pizza with extra Cheese.

But don't you think for one minute that without either of the above you can ban my blogging.

Here Here. The Blogging continues.

And two in a single day !!!
Take that... In your Face !!!

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02:29 am - The Struggle for Oblivion
A startling article gripped my attention today.
It was trying to draw attention to two Lists that this prominent institution had drawn up. Check out the article here
The First List : was the quotidian List of 50 People Who Matter. So, Big Deal, there are ALWAYS going to be people we need, you think. And there is ALWAYS going to be such a dialectic list, you argue.
But what gave me seizures was the content of the Second List. This was a list of 10 People That Don't Matter, i.e., eminent personalities who just do not matter to the World anymore.
So ? Whats the big deal, you ask ? The world is doing fine without the Einstein's and Gandhi's of yesteryear.
Well sure they are. But these fine men/women are ALIVE.
Still not shocked eh ?
Ok then. You brought me to this. I'm gonna give you a glimpse of the List.
Linus Torvald, Rob Malda (The guy who gave us Slashdot.org), Arun Sarin (CEO, Vodafone), Jonathan Schwartz (CEO,Sun) and last but definitely not the least Ken Kuturagi (President, SONY).

Enough said. I don't think the discussion needs to be continued. The seizures have begun.

Man!! What a way to go. Imagine giving the world one of the best Operating Systems in the World, maintaing it fo r about 20 years and then being declared as a person who does not matter anymore.

Would I like to have a life like that ? A life wherein you just cease to matter for the world anymore. No matter what great contributions you have bestowed upon Society.
Not that I want to be a Demigod of sorts, and if you ask me today, FAME is the last thing on my mind.

I wonder what Linus is thinking : "Hey, can't you guys at least have the decency to wait till I die !!!"

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July 17th, 2006

02:33 am - The OpenSourceDeal
I'm dedicating this article in trying to explain what the Big Deal is, in The OpenSourceDeal.
The OpenSourceDeal. Or as Tejas(my partner in crime) likes to call it, The OpenSourceDeal.com.
This is the name of our very first business venture !!!

Through this venture, we want to provide Open Source Software to the people of India.
By Open Source Software, we mean the entire gamut of Softwares.
Right from Linux Distributions, to Linux Games, to Linux Applications, to non-Linux Open Source Distributions like the BSD flavours, to open source Software for the Windoze platform.

What I dream of is a time when no one will have to think twice before BUYING an Open Source Software. A time when even the 15-17 year olds can easily lay their hands on the Linux flavour of their choice.

Why do all this ?
I think the primary reason is personal vendetta. Against whom ? Against helplessness of not having a choice. A state I abhor almost as much as I detest pity.
I remember, a Linux newbie, being laughed upon for not knowing that there were more than two (RedHat and Mandrake) distributions existing in my then finite Universe.

From that day till the not very distant past, I found it extremely difficult to get Linux CDs. Call it ignorance of mailing lists or dearth of geek friends, the fact remains that I could have done with a walk-in store for Open Source Software.

So, with resolve to present a choice and this itch in the posterior part of my torso to start a business venture of my own gave birth to The OpenSourceDeal.

Though this idea had been lingering in mind for more than six months now, I somehow, behooving to my gentility, kept procrastinating actually going ahead and starting it.

So, finally here we are.
Its up and running and I already have a client.

I have huge plans for it. Plans for expansion in a manner that people have never thought about Open Source Software.
All in good time, mate ... all in good time !!!

My first and foremeost concern, is to provide quality service to my customers. Make them feel relaxed about getting hold of OSS Distributions. "Hey , FreeBSD 7.0 is out. Looks Delicious. Gotta check opensourcedeal.com as soon as I get to a PC and get it." Thats what I want my customers to think.

"Yaaawn... Sunday morning rules.... Lemme see what these OpenSourceDeal guys have for me this weekend... DreamLinux.... Looks good... oh well.. click click.. There I got me one of those"

I plan to glut the Indian market with OSS. With less than 5% Indian Software Engineers out there, the world is already sitting up and taking notice. Once EVERYONE (every aspiring SE) has access to the software, I can't see what could stop India from becoming the premier destination for quality software in ALL fields.

So, Let the World Beware !!! The Open Source Deal has been set loose in India !!!

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July 14th, 2006

01:37 am - Stronger Plan B's
That's Right !! That's Me alright !!
I have made this observation about myself quite recently.
Whenever I take up a venture upon myself to perform, I usually spend more part of the time coming up with a Plan B.
All my creative potential (Yes, I insist I have it) is wasted in embellishing, fortifying and failsafing my Plan Bs.

Like, for instance, the other day.. what was it again.... oh yeah 4th July.. I went and started my own li'l business. I decided to sell free Software. Check it out at http://osd.byethost8.com
Well, anyway, three months prior to starting it, I got myself convinced that even if the whole business flops and I don't even manage to break even, I'll still have learnt something. I will have the invaluable experience of getting a stratup screwed-up on my conscience and, as was pointed to me by many-a-friends, that is something I should be proud off.

Then this OS loving geek inside me, kept telling me : Even if the whole thing ends up being a farce, I will still end up with a zillion OSes and that definitely CAN'T be bad !!

Well, now that I have the problem identified, I'll just put on my war-boots and just gun it down.
Beep Beep Beep !!!
Senseless Rant-alert !!

Ok Ok.... I'l leaving... I know when I'm not wanted.
But hear me if you will, from this day onwards, no more Plan Bs for me !!

And just in case I don't stick with my resolve.............

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