Friday, July 25, 2008

Old story in a new version

I got this story as a mail recently. Thought of sharing it with all my readers!

Story of an ANT and A GRASSHOPPER



The ANT works hard in the withering heat all summer building its house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The GRASSHOPPER thinks, the ANT is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Comes winter, the ANT is warm and well fed. The GRASSHOPPER has no food or shelter so he dies out in the cold.



The ANT works hard in the withering heat all summer building its house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The GRASSHOPPER thinks, the ANT is a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.

Comes winter, the shivering GRASSHOPPER calls up a PRESS CONFERENCE and demands to know why the ANT should be allowed to be warm and well fed, while others are cold and starving.

NDTV, BBC, CNN show up to provide pictures of the shivering GRASSHOPPER, next to a video of the ANT in his comfortable home with a table filled with food.

The world is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be that this poor GRASSHOPPER is allowed to suffer so!!

ARUNDHATI ROY, stages a demonstration in front of the ANT's house.

MEDHA PATKAR, goes on a fast along with other GRASSHOPPERS demanding that GRASSHOPPERS be relocated to warmer climates during winter.

MAYAWATI states this as 'injustice' done on MINORITIES.

UN & KOFI ANNAN, criticize the Indian government for not upholding the fundamental rights of the GRASSHOPPER.

The INTERNET is flooded with online petitions seeking support to the GRASSHOPPER(many promising Heaven and Everlasting Peace prompt support as against the wrath of God for non-compliance).

'BENGAL BANDH' in West Bengal and Kerala demanding a JUDICIAL ENQUIRY.

CPM in immediately passes a law preventing ANTS from working hard in the heat so as to bring about equality of poverty among ANTS and GRASSHOPPERS.

LALU PRASAD allocates one free coach to GRASSHOPPERS on all Indian Railway Trains, aptly named as the 'GRASSHOPPER RATH'

Finally, the JUDICIAL COMMITTEE drafts the 'PREVENTION OF TERRORISM AGAINST GRASHOPPERS ACT' [ POTAGA ], with effect from the beginning of the winter.

ARJUN SINGH makes 'SPECIAL RESERVATION' for GRASSHOPPERS in Education Institutions and in Govt. Services.

The ANT is fined for failing to comply with POTAGA and having nothing left to pay his retroactive taes, its home is confiscated by the GOVT. and handed over to the GRASSHOPPER in a cermony covered by NDTV.




KOFFI ANNAN invites the GRASSHOPPER to address the UN General assembly.






















The ANT has since migrated to the US and set up a muti-billion dollar company in SILICON VALLEY, 100s of GRASSHOPPERS still die of starvation despite of reservation somewhere in India,








As a result of loosing lot of hard working ANTS and feeding the GRASSHOPPERS,






WIYOATS? (as one of my friend says)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Mice in the league of Dinos? May be

The computer mouse set to die out in the next five years? Don’t bet on it! by ZDNet's Adrian Kingsley-Hughes -- According to a sensationalist article by the BBC News, that lump of plastic that you have next to your keyboard will, over the next few years, go the way of the dinosaur and be replaced by revolutionary technologies such as touchscreens and facial recognition. I wouldn't bet on it ...

Space Suit this one??

This post is about a very interesting thing that I came across only today.

Picture this. You are an engineer aboard the International Space Station on an expedition. Suddenly you find that a few things that you were using have become out of order and are of no use to you any more. What would you do?? You got to do something about the trash right, can't keep collecting it.
Normally, people on the ISS would tell you to send the stuff down to the atmosphere so that it will get burnt down. So the next time you see a mound of dust lying over your furniture, it could well be the burnt up version of some old space equipment that some astronaut wasnt able to use anymore.

But, in 2005, a new initiative was taken. International Space Agencies decided to turn unusable space suits into satellites. Accordingly, the Amateur Radio on the International Space Station(ARISS) fabricated, tested and delivered a ham radio system to the ISS team barely three weeks after the Space Agencies agreed on that idea. Then, after a series of tests and confirmation, Expedition 12 commander Bill McArthur and flight engineer Valery Tokarev stuffed the specially designed hardware into an unusable Russian Orlan suit and hurled the suit out of the IS station in February 2006. Just like a lot of people throw the bhel puri plate out of their car window!!

The specialities of the SuitSat is that it contains what is fundamentally a transmitter and a reciever which work at FM frequencies(yes!!) of 145 MHz. Additionally, it contained a interface box for the crew aboard ISS to operate. It also contained a CD containing the voices of a number of students across the globe, to be broadcasted by SuitSat. Since this project was developed with the help of a huge number of students, a lot of students, children and common public were encouraged to tune into the frequency to listen to SuitSat. The initiative was a pretty good success with an overwhelming response from the public for the SuitSat.

The SuitSat has no fuel supply per se. It just floats around until it comes into the realm of our atmosphere when it gets burnt up.

The first version SuitSat, SuitSat1 was finally lauched in Feb 2006 and it has re entered the earth also. Efforts are on to develop hardware for SuitSat2, so that these automatons are made use of to the fullest extent possible.

Check this out:

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Planning to leave

Times have changed.


These days, most people I live with are absolutely busy planning to "leave" from here. And I'm supposed to sit through all of it.

Or may be I should turn into a piece of wood.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

No Fire in the Firefox!!!

When I first started using firefox browser last year, I was all excited about it. It satisfied two of my fundamental needs: 1. To be able to load pages quickly and 2. To be able to browse 6 to 7 websites at one time and having only one window open.

Then firefox3.0 happened. But the latest version has not been so good. All that Mr.browser has to say is error in loading page, try again. Mr.Browser cant even load Google!!!!!

So when I went back to browser hunting, I stumbled on one called Avant. I must tell you this browser is beautiful!!! I discovered that this browser has a whole lot of things that would make any heavy internet user go 'gaga' over it. The striking thing about this is that it is able to block the unwanted Flash Animations, Pictures, Sounds, and Videos which can save you up to 95% of your bandwidth. And its got a good collection of skins for those who love playing with colour. And it has the tabbed browsing too in addition to a set of mouse gestures!!!

A perfect Firefox alternative is finally here, I guess.

Lost my post :(

One of the posts got published with a back date, and when I tried to change its date, I lost it!!!! It got deleted.

Thursday, July 10, 2008


May your image always stay before my eyes
Oh! the husband of Rakhumani
Sweet is thy face,
Sweet is thy name
Fills me with love at all times
My Panduranga grant me this boon.....That you'll remain in my heart
Says Tuka, I ask for nothing else

All joy lies at your feet

Says Vatsala, this abhang of Tukaram haunts this self
May the haunt continue forever

Sunday, July 6, 2008


I'm an avid tech enthusiast, and I try to keep a track of the arrival of a number of technology solutions in India. In that respect, I have been eagerly awaiting the launch of the 3G services of the mobile telephony in India for a long time now. But with current political and economic tensions, and the absence of Dayanidhi Maran in the Ministry, I have little hopes that 3G will materialise anytime soon.

The attraction to 3G is because of these:
1. 3G is bigger, better and faster than 2G

2. 3G operates in a wider range of frequency spectrum.
So it will help ease the spectrum crunch faced by operators particularly in the metros. This way they will be able to sustain the aggressive growth that has taken place.

3. 3G has four to five times higher voice capacity, which means we can get far more cost effective voice services.
That could translate to cheaper call rates!! yippee!!

4. 3G will open up a whole new range of services and applications that can be handled through the mobile device. This in
turn will increase the span of the telecom industry, with new businesses that will feed these services.

The Indian mobile telephone industry is fast maturing, and will evolve into a lucrative 3G market. We need to get our act together and quickly usher in the new technology, before another new technology renders this one obsolete.

The important reason behind the 3G launch reaching a stalemate is the spectrum crunch in the domestic segment. So the government is trying to increase this range by turning to other users of the frequency spectrum: the defence forces and space research. The thrust is on the defence forces to vacate a part of their spectrum.

For 3G to become a success and to achieve extremely high rates of penetration, it will require the government to prioritise technological infrastructure development. And licensing fees will have to be reduced. Secondly, the allotment of the frequencies to the service providers will have to be handled properly, so that they pass on the benefit to the end customer. 3G services must be positioned, priced and marketed in such a way that they cater to the needs of the so called tier 2 cities and lower down. People from these areas are going to propel the country's growth in the days to come.

What do you think?

Saturday, July 5, 2008


There is so much humdrum going on about the price rise lately, I thought I would try and understand wht it is all actually about.

So here are my findings:

1. The latest inflation rate has been calculated to be 11.63% , up by a whopping 3% in the past three to four months from 8%.
2. The inflation rate is always calculated in hindsight, that is for the trading and businesses that have taken place a few weeks ago. So this latest figure is for the week beginning June 21
3. The inflation rate is the percentage change in the prices of goods and services. Basically i think it kinda indicates how much more money we pay for goods/services than their actual cost.

Then, what is it that drives this increase in the cost??

Well, The cost goes up because the cost of the input raw material goes up, which in turn goes up because a lot of the raw materials for a wide range of industries are imported. The fuel cost and the strength of the foreign currency involved drives the price of the raw material.

So it all boils down to the cost of the fuel which drives the price rise.

As we all know, the price of crude oil in the markets have risen to $144 a barrel, whereas it was not so bad just a few weeks ago. The sharp rise in the oil prices has been not so much because of corresponding increase in demand

Nor is it because the oil producing nations are asking for more money for the oil

It is primarily due to something called futures trading taking place in an unregualted manner. Futures trading is done by special traders called speculators. Speculators only speculate, that is they dont actually buy anything.

Futures trading is about betting your money on a particular good and fixing its price in advance. If the actual price at the later date reduces, then the producer of the commodity is insulated from it, and he gets the price agreed upon earlier. And the vice versa.

Speculation over specualtion has resulted in the current state of the oil prices. I wonder when this will "deflate". Because as long as it doesnt, my dreams of buying a Honda city shall be put on hold.

So long.

P.s. this post may not really enlighten you about the trading market, still it will give you a "clear" picture of the great confusion the market actually is :D