Friday, December 17, 2010

Google's Web History

I didnt know about this, until now. Ignorance was bliss. Now that i know, i did the right thing. Turn it off!! I would have appreciated if Google had sought my permission before they choose to save my search history. It is one thing to store it on my computer's cache, but a wholly another thing to make this available online, even if it is accessible only by me. All this only increases my paranoia levels.

Note from Google on privacy: Web History is accessible only by signing in to your Google Account with your username and password. As long as you don't share your username and password, your Web History should remain completely private.

Google Web History tracks (i should say store, but i am paranoid and very pissed), all online searches done thru' google. Lucky me, i still use Yahoo for my searches. Now that i discovered this truth, am need to ferret the same about Yahoo. I do know that when Yahoo introduced search perferences long while ago, this was not one of the options.

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Math QnA

Funny!! Not always does a student get to poke fun at the teacher in class. Like a friend of mine (senior from school) who narrated the incident in a biology class.
Shantha maam: tell me the name of an amphibian?
Friend: Frog (after help from behind)
Shantha maam: Give me another one? (knowing how this chappy figured out the answer).
Friend: Another Frog
So i got this in the mail, a while ago. This the response by a smart student, to a tough (well maynot be so tough) math question.

Smart eh?!
Well not if you see how the teacher graded him/her.
Full grades the teacher on this one.

I also recall another one where my Stats professor, help my friend understand that his marks where "not out of 50", but purely "out of pity".

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

'Quantitative Easing' Explained

Finally a lot of people are beginning to understand how royally their government and team is screwing them. I was introduced to this video, by my friend on facebook, and fought it both amusing as well as frightening. The latter because how true it all was.

So whats the moral of the story. Do we believe in everything, something, anything at all ?

Sunday, November 21, 2010


I guess it all common knowledge now, atleast to those who care. Klueless 6th edition is out. Its been out since 18th.
I have been at it too since then. Altho' i got to start it US EST, i havent made much progress. Its easy to blame work and other distractions all equally related to the paycheck that comes in a few days. But i think i must admit, this has been quite a tricky one so far.  I am just past the half way, mark, thanks mainly to a wild goose chase that lasted almost this entire weekend.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

India, that is not Bharat

My version of the original cartoon, that appeared in The Hindu a few days back.
The original here, was a take on a statement that only Congress is capable of meeting/addressing these needs by Rahul Gandhi. Nothing more than a tall claim.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

I am India

A video from the house of BharatBala Productions.
"This film is a journey through emerging India," the fastest growing free market democracy in the world". It celebrates the relentless spirit of the people of India, who through their karma give it a place amongst the leading economic nations of the world."

A good presentation on the many different positives that is abound in India. It showcases the India of today, the India of tomorrow, an active vibrant economy, that is ready to take on the world.
Are we ?

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Desh Ka Mail

Caught this advertisement during the opening ceremony of the CWG 2010. While it was irritating to endure the break in the ceremonies. This advertisement had the entire family spellbound and glued to the tv, and silent for the full minute it ran. We had to watch till the end to figure what all this commotion was about. And true to Indian Railways, this ad keeps with this spirit.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Tracking Greenie

My friend Supraja, announced the release of Greenie, a sea turtle in to the sea, with a satellite tag. The map on the right show where she has traveled, since being released into the open waters on Sunday, Aug 29, 2010.

I was planning to go, but timing didnt work out for me. However, the path and journey can be tracked online, by one interested at

And another discovery that i learnt recently was 'IFS'. Thats not Indian Foreign Service, as i used to think, it instead stands for Indian Forest Service. A civil service post, similar to the IAS rank. I understood this when i met Mr. R. Sundararaju, IFS,  the Chief Wildlife Warden, of Tamil Nadu. It was a chance meeting, when he visited DC, that lead to this. Interestingly i was also pleasantly surprised with his grasp on environment, wildlife and forest related issues and knowledge.

I was also disproved that a bureaucrat,  is usually just a paper pusher and doesnt know about the space where they work. This gentleman is quite knowledgeable on most issues related to his area, and also has the passion required of him.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Newt Speak !

Esquire recently published an article on Newt Gingrich. What struck me the most was the line, "It doesn't matter what I do, people need to hear what I have to say." Well spoken Mr. Gingrich. The excerpt below sets the context for this momentous quote.
But Marianne was having problems of her own. After going to the doctor for a mysterious tingling in her hand, she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Early in May, she went out to Ohio for her mother's birthday. A day and a half went by and Newt didn't return her calls, which was strange.

They always talked every day, often ten times a day, so she was frantic by the time he called to say he needed to talk to her. "About what?"
He wanted to talk in person, he said. "I said, 'No, we need to talk now.' "
He went quiet. "There's somebody else, isn't there?"

She kind of guessed it, of course. Women usually do. But did she know the woman was in her apartment, eating off her plates, sleeping in her bed?

She called a minister they both trusted. He came over to the house the next day and worked with them the whole weekend, but Gingrich just kept saying she was a Jaguar and all he wanted was a Chevrolet. " 'I can't handle a Jaguar right now.' He said that many times. 'All I want is a Chevrolet.' "
He asked her to just tolerate the affair, an offer she refused.

He'd just returned from Erie, Pennsylvania, where he'd given a speech full of high sentiments about compassion and family values.

The next night, they sat talking out on their back patio in Georgia. She said, "How do you give that speech and do what you're doing?"

"It doesn't matter what I do," he answered. "People need to hear what I have to say. There's no one else who can say what I can say. It doesn't matter what I live."
Well said Mr. Gingrich ! Well said !!
In spite of this hypocrisy, his followers will listen to him and look up to him, just like they do of the many like him. All i can think of the Pied Piper of Hamelin. If that equates to these leaders/speakers, then you can just imagine what the mice equates to.

Monday, July 19, 2010

"Reality Distortion Field"

This is an animated video by NMANews, a Taiwanese outfit, that also put out the animated version of the Tiger Woods story, now has this story about Steve Jobs and Apple. I find this funny, but not fully a subscriber to the theory expounded here. Of course its all done in jest.

Why they should do this, and why this resonates with a lot of people is another story, and i hope to find time to pen that soon.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Stuff people come up with !!

I was searching recently for the name of the parrot that was also supposedly doing the predictions for the winner of the 2010 World Cup Football. I hit on this page below. I grabbed the image of the page, lest they remove it or i loose it in the world wide web. What caught my eye, was not the parrot the prediction or the octopus and their psychic ability to predict winners, but the explanation offered by a comment at the bottom.

Nice going Mr. Damodaran !! I wonder what you would have come up with if Spain didnt end up winning the world cup.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Govt of India hikes fuel price

What is fiscal responsibility ? Why is the government more concerned about scoring brownie-points for its fiscal policies, than the population that it must govern? Ever wonder what would happen if we mimic societies of the so called developed countries?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Classical Tamizh - Semmozhi Tamizhmozhi

Here is the anthem composed by ARR, for the World Classical Tamil Conference. The anthem itself was penned by Karunanidhi. The song and music has the usual ARR class and touch. I am still trying to get a good grasp of the meaning of the lyrics here.

Pirapokkum ella uyirkum
pirandha pinnar
yaddhum oore yaavarum kellirrr
onnbadhu naazhi udupathu irende
uraividam enbadhu ondre
uraithu vazhndhom uzhaithu vazhvom..

theedhum nandrum pirar thara vaarai yenum
nan mozhiye nam pon mozhiyaam
porrai puram thallhi porulai podhuvaakave..
amaidhi vazhi kaatum anbu mozhi
ayyan valluvarin vaaimozhiyaam


orrarivu mudhal aararivu uyirinam varayile
unarndhidum udalamaipai pagirthu koorum
orrarivu mudhal aararivu uyirinam varayile
unarndhidum udalamaipai pagirthu koorum
thozhgapugal thozhgapiyamum
oppatra kural koorum uyar panpaadu
olikindra silamubum meghalayum sindhamaniyudane..
vazhayapathi kundalakesiyumm..


kamba naataalvarum kavi arasiyevai nallaalum
yemmadhamum yetrum puzhgal endru
yethanayo aayiram kavidhai neivor tharum
thadai anaithukkum vithaaga vilangum mozhi


aagam endrum puram endrum
vazhvai azhagaaga vaguthalithu
aadhi anddam illathu irukindra iniya mozhi
modhi vazharum uyiraana ulhaga mozhi
modhi vazharum uyiraana ulhaga mozhi
thamm mozhi namm mozhi

tamizh mozhi tamizh mozhi tamizh mozhi yaaaa…
semmozhiyaana tamizh mozhiyaaam
semmozhiyaana tamizh mozhiyaaam
semmozhiyaana tamizh mozhiyaaam
tamizh mozhi yaam tamizh mozhi yaam tamizh mozhi yaam
semmozhiyaana tamizh mozhiyaaam
Thamizh Mozhiyam Engal Thamil Mozhiyam
semmozhiyaana tamizh mozhiyaaam
Thamizh Mozhiyam Engal Thamil Mozhiyam
Vazhiya Vazhiya ve..Thamizh .. Vazhiya Vazhiya ve
Vazhiya Vazhiya ve..Thamizh ..
semmozhiyaana tamizh mozhiyaaam

Monday, June 07, 2010

Bhopal - 28 years later - a big joke

20 thousand people dead, the court decides to give a guilty verdict, with just 2 years imprisonment, and fine of a few lakhs of rupees. All this quickly followed by a bail, with a bond of Rs. 25000 !

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A small perspective

Here is a small perspective on you, me, us, and our planet, earth that we live on. We live on possibly the only planet that seems to have intelligent (pretentious) life forms. And instead of trying to protect it, we are looking to find other life forms. Why? Well possibly to export our destructive powers?

Earth (12600 km), with its satellite Moon (3500 km)

Venus is about the same size as Earth

Suddenly dwarfed in comparison with Neptune and Uranus

Jupiter's diameter is 143,000 km

All pale in comparison with our Sun - 1,392,000 kilometers !

Sun is not the largest star in our galaxy, Sirius something bigger at ~2,500,000km

Pollux is about 8.3 times of Sun

Arcturus is about 31 times the size of Sun.

Aldebaran is 51 times. Sun is a mere dot in this pic.

VV Cephei is about 2400 light years away from Earth

Canis Majoris is ~2000 times our Sun

At this point we, our earth, cannot even be represented. All of this within our Milky Way or nearby galaxy. The Milky Way, Akash Ganga galaxy itself is about 1 million light-years in diameter. The solar system is not at the center of the galaxy, as is normally represented.

So, if it took God (as supposed some where), 6 days to create our planet, and one day to rest, i strangely feel (s)he is still working somewhere.

At end of this, i wonder if this is the right time to bring up my problem with including and positioning  large images in my blog.

I tried to locate the original pictures, in an effort to find out the authenticity too. Unfortunately no luck there, and apparently several people also tried the same without luck. So bless the person or persons who created this. I assembled these from two or more sites. It took me over a week or so do this, i have almost lost the sites where i picked up which pictures. But if you do a simple search for 'earth size perspective' you will hit a dozen, refine your searches and see more refined(?) versions.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


I came across this by accident. But it was interesting reading. I always wondered about this, have recently been affected by this.
"Bananas use ethylene to stimulate fruit ripening. A bunch of bananas will stay green for a long time until the ethylene concentration in the air around them becomes high enough. When that happens, then they begin ripening and they begin releasing more ethylene, which makes them ripen faster and release more ethylene, etc. In this way, all of the bananas will ripen very suddenly and simultaneously." - Ask a Scientist 
 It has both positive and negative effects. The negative is obvious that one bad (ripe or overripe) fruit can quickly damage the rest. The positive is that you can quickly ripen a bunch, or hasten the process, by storing them together in an enclosed environment. No wonder then, that my granny used to store mangoes inside bins storing rice to ripen faster.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Scott McNealy's Memo to Sun Employees

Letter from Scott to all Sun Microsystem's employees. Oracle last week got the final ok to complete the acquisition of Sun. This is really sad news, since Sun was a company i liked, although i didnt directly work for it, i worked on hardware and software. I liked many of the ideals and goals that Scott and Sun pursued. I hope he is able to bounce back, like Steve did, one day, not too distant in the future.

Subject: Thanks for a great 28 years
Date: Tue, 26 Jan 2010
From: Scott McNealy
To: [all Sun employees]

When I interviewed many of you for employment at Sun over the years, one commitment often made was that things will change above, below, and around you faster than any place you have ever been. Looks like this was one area we exceeded plan for 28 years. While it was never theprimary vision to be acquired by Oracle, it was always an interesting option. And this huge event is upon us now. Let's all embrace it with all of the enthusiasm and class and talent that we have to offer.

This combination has the potential to put Sun, its people, and its technology at the center of yet another industry and game-changing inflection point. The opportunity is well-documented and articulated by Larry and the Oracle folks. Not much I can add on this score. This is a very powerful merger. And way better than some of the alternatives we were facing.

So what do I say to all of you, now this is happening?

It turns out that one simple message to the large and diverse Sun community is actually quite hard to craft. Even for a big mouth who is always ready with a clever quip. The community includes our resellers and customers, our current and former employees, their friends and families who supported our employees on their mission to change the industry, our investors, our supply and service partners, students and educators, and even our competitors with whom we often collaborated.

But let me try. Though nothing I could write comes close to matching the unbelievably strong and positive emotions I have for you all. See, I never was able to master dispassion. I truly loved starting, running, and living Sun. And the last four years have not been without serious withdrawal. And the EU approval rocked me more than it should have.

So, to be honest, this is not a note this founder wants to write. Sun, in my mind, should have been the great and surviving consolidator. But I love the market economy and capitalism more than I love my company.

And I sure "hope" America regains its love affair with capitalism. And except for the auto industry, financial industry, health care, and some other places (I digress), the invisible hand is doing its thing quite efficiently. So I am more than willing to accept this outcome.

And my hat is off to one of the greatest capitalists I have ever met, Larry Ellison. He will do well with the assets that Sun brings to Oracle.

What we did right and wrong at Sun over the years might make for interesting reading. However, I am not a book writer. I am a husband, father of four, and a builder and leader of people who want to make a difference.

But spare me a bit of nostalgia. Not of the mistakes we made, and lord knows I made a ton. But of the things we did right and well.

First and foremost, Sun innovated like crazy. We took it to the limit (see Eagles). And though we did not monetize our inventions as well as we could have, few companies have the track record in R&D that we had over the last 28 years. This made working at Sun really cool. Thanks to all of you inventors and risk takers who changed how we live.

Sun cared about its customers. Even more than we cared about our own company at times. We looked at our customer's mission as more important than ours. Maybe we should have asked for more revenue in return, but our employees were always ready to help first. I love this about Sun, which I guess makes me a good capitalist, if not a great capitalist.

Sun did not cheat, lie, or break the rule of law or decency. While we enjoyed breaking the rules of conventional wisdom and archaic business practice, and for sure loved to win in the market, we did so with a solid reputation for integrity. Nearly three decades of competing without a notable incident of our folks going off course morally or legally. Not all executives and big companies are bad. Really. There are good companies out there. Special thanks to all of my employees for this. I never had to hide the newspaper in shame from my children.

Sun was a financial success. We paid billions in taxes, salaries, purchases, leases, training, and even lawyers and accountants for devastatingly cumbersome SOX and legal compliance (oops, more classic digression). Long-term and smart investors made billions in SUNW. And our customers generated revenue and savings using our equipment in countless ways. Many employees started families, bought homes, and put them through school while working at Sun. Our revenues over 28 years exceeded $200B. Few companies make it to the F200. We did. Nice.

Sun employees had way more fun than any other company. By far. From our dress code ("You must!") to beer busts to our April Fools' pranks to SunRise to our quiet enjoyment at night of a long, hard, well-done day of work, no company enjoyed "work" more than Sun. Thanks to all of our employees past and present for making Sun such a blast.

I could go on for a long time reminiscing about the good and great stuff we did at Sun, but just allow me one last one. We shared. Not the greatest attribute for a capitalist. But one I could not change and was not willing to change about Sun while I was in charge. We shared in the success of Sun with our resellers. With our employees through stock options, SunShare, beer busts, and the like (for as long as Congress would allow) and through our efforts to keep as many of them on board for as long as possible during the inevitable down cycles. With our partners through the Java Community Process, through our open-source collaborations, and licensing strategies. With our customers through our commitments to low barriers to exit. Sun was never just about us. It was about we. And that may be a bit of the reason we are where we are today.

But I have few regrets (see Sinatra's "My Way") and will always look back at Sun and its gang with only pride. Enormous pride. You are the best this industry ever had, though few outside of Sun recognized it.

And what we are about will live on in Sparc, Solaris, Java, our products, and our spirit. Well past everyone's recollections of what we did together. I will never forget, though.

Oracle is getting a crown jewel of the technology industry. They will do great things with Sun. Do your best to support them, and keep the Sun spirit alive and well in the industry. Our children will be better for it.

Thanks for the off-the-charts support to everyone who ever carried a Sun badge, used our products, or helped our company through the years.

And thanks to my wonderful wife, Susan, who gave this desperado (see Eagles) a chance to choose the Queen of Hearts before it was too late.

Someday, hopefully, you will all get to see or meet her and my other life's works named Maverick, Dakota, Colt, and Scout. If you do, perhaps you will understand why I stepped back from the CEO role four years ago. And why I feel like the luckiest guy in the whole world.

My best to all of you, and remember:

Kick butt and have fun!