Sunday, November 30, 2008

Mumbai wakes up India

I received an sms the evening, after it was all over in Mumbai. It was also broadcasted earlier on NDTV. It read.....
"Where is Raj Thackeray and his brave sena ? 200 NSG commados (all Indians) were sent to fight the terrorists, so that he can sleep peacefully."

As soon as i saw it on NDTV, i couldnt help think of the song that haunts everytime you hear it. It talks about the brave soldiers who give up their lives for our better tomorrow.

While this song was sung for a different war, and at a different time. The words are still very true today.


Tuesday, November 04, 2008

American Elections !!

Today America votes, after almost eight years of torture by a person whose most stupendous ability is to mangle any and every english sentence or phrase he uses. It has been a day that one half of America was waiting holding every breath, so that they could live to see it. A day when the world is hoping that America will finally come to its senses.

Obama or Mccain ?
And more importantly does it matter?
And if does, will Martin Luther King's dream come true ?

Hmm... it still rings in my head.... 'I have a dream...'

Sunday, November 02, 2008


Klueless4 - the 2008 version is out.
Start playing
Well, its been out for sometime, atleast a week, and over a 100 people have already completed and reached the Hall of Fame. I started it again, thanks to the alert from Anoop. Now, if i could only get the time to sit and crack this.

Done. Phew. I was desperately stuck in a few places, this time it took even a day to crack it. It was more because of work pressure, than anything else. :) Thanks Anoop for that clue, i was really stuck there. I was about to give up. It is after you emailed me back, i realized, i had thought of it, but never did it. You know sometimes your mind simply refuses to think outside of the box. It is caught on a track and refuses to dislodge itself. This game, is a good exercise for people for two reasons - lateral thinking, and how to search using yahoo/google/wiki.

Here are my stab at providing you some different thoughts to solve the problem, or how i went about cracking it. Ready ? You can get a klueless here...

Level 0: Start... go ahead do it.

Level 1: Obviously we are all here to play, so whats the point here.

Level 2: If you had played Klueless3 then this is a breeze. If you this is your first attempt, then read the instructions. You will need to do something to move from the past to the present.

Level 3: Read the sentence. Its all in there. It might take a while, if you overlook the first few like i did. Dont be confused. If you are stuck read it again. And do it again. Its really simple.

Level 4: Hmm.. that fella looks familiar. We obviously see these chaps on India News TV all the time. If you are not from India, this might twist your brains (get help outsource this to some indian friend you know). Now back to the clue. Check out those numbers, that's not a clock. If you get the real title of the fella, then read the source code to know who you must pick.
I spent sometime, because i didnt read the source carefully. Why would too many clues point to the same thing? I checked the help blogs, there was not much help. Then i discovered a new meaning to the clue in the source.

Level 5: This is shamefull. Check the source. This page looks different. Something is amiss. If you realize the difference, then follow the money trail. Once there, its simple as a click away.

Level 6: ok.... so to us Desi's, atleast from a two decades ago, DD was Doordharshan. Well, as you can see it is not. What is it ? Its not enough if you find the name, there more to it. Trust Wiki to do the rest for you.

Level 7: This klueless round had a lot of numbers, sequences, series. This is your first and the most simplest. Complete the series. Then take a paper and pencil and sort it out.

Level 8: Simple One again. The first thing that crossed my mind. I would have been thru in a second. But no, i dont listen to advice. There is probably something here, something that's hidden. Well, i started cracking the clue, went about in circles, hit on my first thought a few times, but it didnt seem obvious enough.
After about an hour, i tried my first thought... two attempts.... to get the spelling and answer right. Boom, i dashed to the next level.

Level 9: The picture is a hint. The color is a hint. The sentence is a hint. The title is a hint. (What is this, a repeat of the instructions?. Well, i was just trying to reiterate, people (like me) usually forget, and keep wandering in the dark. ) When you begin to realize that the sentence needs to be tranlated, you figure the answer.
I had to struggle a few times. I kept thinking there was more to it. There isnt. Again about 10 or so minutes later, i tried what i knew and it worked.

Level 10: Fancy Clock. Those numbers mean something. And these stars, well you know them all. Wiki is your guide here. Once you know how they are all related, i dont just mean the people, also the numbers, you have the answer. Well, how do you make it one word? You know just the last statement is a clue. The hollyword stars in a word.
It was a breeze. Two searches, got the relation. One more to confirm. Then to find the missing ones. Then one extra search to get the spelling right. Wiki, you are the real god of Klueless.

Level 11: Mecca. Well to us in India, this is religion. But i am not so sure if this is considered Mecca anymore (atleast to us in India). But it is where a lot of things got started. Ikes that insect is irritating me !!! Wiki again, what? Mecca, oh no. Not Mecca, that you have to figure out yourself. But then, you know the people, who are standing around, watching it all.
Easy one. One search to Wiki. And soon enough the answer is obvious. By the way, i noticed the insect only now.

Level 12: This was not easy. Only because i have seen all these pictures. I just didnt recall the big blot of ink in the middle. Even if i did, i never knew it was related to geometery. And even i figured that by a small fraction of mind, i would never have connected it to the universe. Why is Mandela and Chicken Soup at the bottom of the picutre? Taking about soup, if i was Shakespeare, i would have said 'What's in a soup? It tastes the same, by another name.'
I spent a few minutes, more than a few minutes doing image search. Thats i figured, having dont 3 rounds of klueless already. It was easy after that.

So far so good. All of so much was accomplished in less than 2 hours. With 8 taking almost 50% of it. Level 9, half of the remaining time. And level 12, taking about a fifth of the balance. Hmmm. How many minutes did i say, i took?

More soon... Cause Level 13, was unlucky. I took a weekend to crack this. I searched the blog sites like none other. I found nothing. They were down. There were limited clues. Every one was simply saying the same twisted thing, again and again.

Level 13: Well. This is similar to puzzle and other Ciphers and cryptic messages i worked on in Klueless3. First things first. The writing is very familiar. If you have seen it, you know it. If you havent, then its a doubt. Well start cracking the puzzle. While i was struggling to crack the words and letters, i also found a clue in the klueless blog. It said 'Secret of 52'. I didnt have to search Wiki, i knew what it was. But then how to apply it here. The secret of 52, uses a particular pattern. In this case, the pattern has to be expanded to the fullest extend possible.
For me that was the begining of the problem. The last time i played and used the 'secret of 52', there was another clue which hinted at the application of key to this puzzle. In this case there wasnt any. That was until i got an email from Anoop. The thinking and driving me nuts process lasted for almost a day, till i got help from Anoop.

Level 14: Simple as it can be. There is a description and an image. Use the description and search web images. You will find the same ring. Research the ring and you will get your answer.
It took me two or three searches to find the image. And then it didnt much time after that.

Level 15: Three doors..... more on this soon.
Like the delay in updating the clues now, this level was tricky. It was meant to be, you are now half way there. There are three doors;
Level 15a - Door 1 - This is simple search and you will know the answer. All you have to do is find the missing one. But as soon as you enter the answer, you will hit a dead-end.
Level 15b - Door 2 - This page is very familiar. Where did we see this before ?
Level 15c - Door 3 - This is tricky, but only because you are not thinking simple. The first sentence has a clue hidden in it. Then of course there are the images. Each of the animals are doing something. Except one. What are the doing? And what is special about the one that is not. You can use the sentence clue or the images. The images first and then the sentence, i would say.
As instructed in these levels, you get a user name and password. Where do you enter this ? That is the key.
I had to do levels 1 thru 15, three times before i got the answer. It wasnt very difficult to figure out what to do when i hit the dead-end. When i finally got it, i didnt, but i should kicked myself.

Level 16: A chat window, with a message. Decode. How ? If you chat or sms you will know how to write this sentence. When decoded you will find a few words that can stand on their own. The only issue, what are u going to do ?
It wasnt easy. The key was figuring out what u could do?

Level 17: Hang Man. Wrong man for the wrong crime!! When you ease him down and let him stand up, he will give you a clue. You dont have offer any quite prayer, specially if you have lost faith. A simple search is enough to find the real person who should be hung here.

Level 18: Solve the clues - the sentences. When you have solved a few you will know what to do with the numbers. The key though is to find out which way to read the numbers - up, down, cross ?? Well all that means is a few trials. Right. Trust in Yahoo/Google to get your thru the sentence clues.

Level 19: Who let this dog out ? Name the pictures. They will all fall in place. If it doesnt, you have got wrong names associated with the pictures. Try again.
I should have know following the disney cartoon is a wrong way to go. It just was too obvious. Took a while. Then a friend said the right word for the bottom-right corner image. Suddenly the calculation made sense and so did the fish. I havent bothered to find out the rest. :)

Level 20: Simple math. Well, first you need to know what those characters are ? I mean which language. Then what it means. Then some research. When you get the number, you will know how it is associated with the sun.

Level 21: AT SiX PoinT? What is that? Well, thats a code. All that matters in that have been marked up. When you figure it out, you need to go to the URL .... well obviously since there is no place to enter anything. The main thing after that is to count. Everything counts. Add it all up. The sum of it all, is the answer to the next level.

Level 22: i j - Till i hit here, i didnt know that there was a term for it. Well, what do you know ? There is a name and even a more specific one. Well, you may critic this, as being childish. When you find out, that for i & j, this is integral, then you would have learned a thing or two.

Level 23: Stumped. To a desi, there is not new at all. How ever, what is intriquing is this is recent. Another plug, even they didnt sponsor Klueless. Or may be they did. Think of some recent games and you will get the answer.

Level 24: This is tricky. You will need to go on a wild goose chase, and you will finally be rewarded. Start with Napoleon. It will take a lot of words,  if i am to explain what to do next. But just think, that year, something or someone was laid to rest. Wiki, and wiki alone can help you here. A lot of reading and patience will help.

Level 25: Calculator. What is with the LED and the numbers within the numbers? And where is the key ? Well, as they said in the instructions, some times simply staring at the images will not help. Its real easy if you begin to play with the image.

Level 26: Another thoughtful but simple level. Sometimes you just need to give up. The sooner you figure that, the sooner you can rest in peace.

Level 27: How can you change a symbol of love into numbers? This is one way. These numbers like it show is a coordinate on something like an x,y axis. The only problem is that these lines are imaginary. So how do you plot them?

Level 28: First get into the frame of things. As soon as you read - the begining and the end is a simple hint of things to come. Then you have to crack the puzzling statements. They say, history repeat itself. Hmm, i wonder if they meant things happen on the same day again and again. I mean different things. (Ok that was so lame!). When you know the date, the 'mera mahan' things hits you. Search till you find the frame. When you find it, you realize the klueless is serious when they say, 'stick to the original'.

Level 29: What are these images ? I have seen these many times, many times by accident. If you dont, open Word (ya as it was indicated in the previous level), and play with it, till you see something that is similar to this. Then play again, to decode. (Let me tell you this, because i play around with these 'wings', i know a thing or two about these dings). So it was easy to play around with different options, soon i see a formula. The trick now is what to these operands mean? Try the two possibilities for each operand. So with four tries you should be able to cross the level.

Level 30: Finally!!! We have seen this somewhere. Get the original. See the alternate. Now i am see two similar pictures. Similar ? No not exactly, i see things differently. The first two appear soon enough, and then they keep making lesser and lesser mistakes.

Level 31: What another one ? What do i do here ?