Monday, November 8, 2010

Tech And Startup Events In and Around Chennai

[Cross-posted on my other blog as well]

Finally here it is - There are a lot of tech events that are shaping up in Chennai - and I found it next to impossible to track any of them beyond a point.  So here is a compilation of as many events that I have tried to track in the past few days - I've setup a public Google Calendar for now. Its not very sophisticated, but good enough for now.

You can track/bookmark it from here

Alternatively You can catch the RSS feed here
I'm wondering how to make this publicly editable - but thats for later. Siddharta Govindaraj's idea sounds good - needs to be explored -

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

TechMeets - First Edition

[cross - posted on my tech blog as well ]
A TechMeet is going to happen this saturday - The goal of the techmeet is to discuss and learn new trends,technologies,programming languages,new DBs, virtually anything thats new in the software programming world.
Here are the details:

Saturday 16th Oct - 10am onwards (2 to 2.5 hours)

At Thoughtworks Chennai Office 
RR Tower 5, Level 2, Rishabh Info Park, 33 A Developed Plots, Thiru Vi Ka Industrial Estate, Ekkatuthangal, Guindy
Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600032
044 4395 3500

What are the topics:

Building Applications using  Cloud Computing Platforms by  OrangeScape Tech Team (

MongoDB - A NoSQL database by Vagmi Mudumbai (

How can you help. 
1. Please let us know whether you will be coming
2. Please spread the word (hashtag #techmeets)
3. Please add your questions on either (or both) topics at:

No registration required. You can just show up. But knowing how many people will be there will help us in terms of logistics. You can write to dorait[at]imorph[dot]com for any other questions that you may have.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Alternatives to windows media player

This is worth trying out - MoreAmp is a Audio player, transcoder and cd ripper - runs on windows and mac as welll.

SoX is  the Swiss Army knife of sound processing programs- but they run only from the command line. 

Friday, July 16, 2010

RBI Guidelines for Corrections in Cheques from 1 July 2010

Hi readers,
I would like to share this important announcement with the august readers [:)] of this blog.

RBI has issued a guideline regarding the handling of cheques which comes into effect from 1 July 2010 - Herafter, i.e. from 1 July 2010, Corrections to the cheque amount in words, cheque amount in numerals, and name of the payee will not be allowed. This means that you cannot strike or rewrite or overwrite the following -
1. The name of the person to whom you are issuing the cheque
2. The amount of the cheque in numerals(numbers)
3.The amount of the cheque written in words.

So, you are allowed to make corrections to only the date, which should have your signature next to it.
Also Banks have been instructed to print/stamp the account number on the cheque as a compulsory measure.

Monday, July 12, 2010

TED Global Conference streaming LIVE in Chennai!

TED conference brings together some of the visionaries and thinkers from all walks of life. The latest edition of TED Global has started today 12 July at Oxford and is a week long event till the 16th of July.

Sigh, but what can we do here in Chennai sitting so many hundred kilometers away? Guess what, We can get to listen to the TED Global talks at 1/128th of the price, that too sitting right here in our Singara Chennai.

Think thats too good to be true? Well, thank your stars and the TEDxChennai team. They are organizing a live telecast of the TED Global event at IIT Madras Research Park on Wednesday and Thursday from 6 PM to 11 PM daily. Its a little late in the day, but well worth it. Go ahead and register at and make hay while the sun shines!

UPDATE: CHANGE IN VENUE - The address of the Venue is
SAE Institute 
6th Floor, Jayalakshmi Estate, 29/8 Haddows Road
Phone: +91 (0)44 2820 3942

Monday, June 21, 2010

Podcast Workshop on July 4th 2010

As computer science engineers, we deal with the 'cast' (pun intended) system a lot. We have unicast,multicast,telecast,broadcast, overcast,typecast.. oops too many casts to deal with isnt it? Now of late, there is a new 'cast' ;) that is catching on. Its called the "Podcast". It is a word you will commonly hear when, as a commoner, you stand between 4 or 5 comp sci grads. But for the benefit of the muggles (non techies, common people) let me introduce you to the latest 'cast' in our society - Podcast. 

Podcast is a broadcast. Ah, simple thing. But it is done over the internet. So, in simple terms, its an audio clip containing a discussion about a topic that you can listen directly on/ download from the internet. And the beauty is, whenever a new podcast is published, you will get to know about it immediately through the podcast's RSS feed. Cool isnt it? :) And the good thing about this is that you dont need costly equipment to do your own podcast. All you need is an internet connection, a voice recorder, a computer to upload your recording, and something to talk about.

So now coming to the point, Business Blogging is conducting a workshop on Podcasting - where they give you answer to the question - "How to do Podcasting?"

So go ahead and read about it here -

Thursday, May 27, 2010

dotSUB - your video your language

dotSUB is a video sharing website. Ah, whats new, you might ask. What if you could view the videos on that site in a language of your choice? Yes, that sets dotSUB apart from the existing video sharing websites.

With dotSUB you can view the videos that are already there - like any other video sharing website - but there is a high probability that you will find a technical how to video translated and running in,say, Telugu.
Or probably some old Bruce Lee movie clip in Tamil.

What you can also do, is if you know another language besides the language in which the video has been made, then you can do the translation for it. Or you could just transcribe it, i.e. write out the text of the video. In a language of your choice. Cool isnt it?

I find it amazing. Only thing, the guys at Vijay TV (a local channel in Chennai) who dub all those odd oriental movies into tamil might face some stiff competition here. :) But anyway, I believe competition can bring out the best of the talent in people.

So check it out -

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Latest Endeavours

My latest attempt at pencil shading. Its been a long time dream for me to be able to do pencil shading. Hope to do better and better every time.

Monday, April 12, 2010

What a day@Barcamp chennai

Amazing day today. Lots of sharing of ideas and experiences at

Right now the whole day is racing over and over again in my mind, but I'd like to quickly recapitulate some of the key discussions that did the rounds -

Kaushik Ram spoke about how Javascript can be used effectively even as a serverside scripting language - I'm unable to get the right project name at this moment, but anyway thats for another post

Arvind Sridharan spoke about RangDe, a non profit organization that makes microcredit accessible to every low income household by lowering loan interest rates through innovative means.

Syed from about setting up newer camps like Idea Camp, Rise Camp, Elements 5,etc, which will supplement the event and will foster an collaborative knowledge sharing environment

Dhruva, a legal expert on IPR busted some myths about How one should be aware of one's copyright over the content that one creates. (Hey that sentence is mine, you better not copy it :P) and about How we must assert our copyrights as soon as we discovered a violation so no one gets to lay false claims on original content.

Senthil Nayagam spoke about his ideas on how the audiences could be involved in making movies, by way of online channels in the form of web applications, internet chat applications etc, so the audience gets to see the kind of movies that they actually like to see.

This was followed by an Android Application Development primer and a quick brief about Internet Society Madras 

Himanshu Sheth spoke about "Effective and Efficient Usage of the LinkedIn network".

There are few more things that I want to mention about the barcamp, but thats for another post.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Low Cost Touch Sensitive Whiteboard

I always believe that technology should be within the reach of the common man...
And here is one awesome video demo of a low cost touch sensitive white board...

Friday, March 5, 2010

A questioning mind or a mindful of questions???

Its another friday today.. These days I have started hating all days of the week, because they remind me constantly that its already that day of the week.  I am exasperated most of the times(like now). There is a constant voice in my head which keeps saying "you ought to be doing much more in the next one minute". And as a consequence, every other minute, I keep thinking "I wish I could do ten times more than what I am doing now", combined with sleeplessness and a mostly a depressed mood, because i havent been able to complete something that I set myself to that day.

18 months ago, June 2008 I was.. well non existent.. in every sense of the word. no plans, no ideas, no opinions, negligible stuff in terms of money making skills, no idea of what do next, no idea about anything whatsoever. and yes no search result on Google.

Today, I have a job, a laptop of my own, a reasonable bank balance, and a strong feeling of wanting educate all those who are looking for an opportunity to know, to learn. And I have managed to save up some money for my father's milestone coming up in the next year. But more important than all this, I have got back my interest in a lot of things which had diminished due to a horrible 2 final years at school and a not so great 4 years at college. I have also gained what most people probably take for granted.. Motivation. Motivation to live the next minute with full energy and to tackle whatever is at hand with double the courage. Not to tremble and back out and run in the opposite direction. But tostare things in their face, and consequently scare them away.  And I also have a search result on Google.

But crossing every day has become a big challenge. and I dislike time when it flies, and when it shows 1 pm in the afternoon and then immediately 5 pm in the evening. and then straight 12 pm.

I am yet to conquer my sense of depression. When I realise I dont know something, and that there is no direct way of learning other than going through hours of debugging sessions, depression and a general self dislike prevails. Is it wrong to not know something or is it wrong to expect help in learning it.
I dont know. And I feel terrible. and terrible and terrible.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Phir Kabhi Na Mile Aisa Sur

Republic Day came and went with its usual "patriotic" fervour of "patriotic" movie telecasts on south indian channels, particularly the ones in Singara Chennai. We could have as well gotten along with a normal holiday, with heavy lunch, a super slumber, and four hours of glued TV watching. But then there had to be a change in the routine. And this was beautifully thrown in by the hype that Phir Mile Sur Mera Thumhara created.

I wanted to know, quite desperately how it was, after seeing some initial reactions on twitter. I go to youtube ( we have "CAS"te system in Chennai even in this millenium), do a quick search and stream Part 1 of this song. And at the end of the 8 minutes, I was left wondering How the heck does Shilpa Shetty feature anywhere in the context of National Integration in any remote context. But turns out I was mistaken. Infact a lot of people are. This new version of the original soulful Mile Sur Mera Thumhara is the integration of all bollywood actors in a single 16 minute video. So what if this supposed to be the sequel of a beautiful song that took the nation by surprise ages ago when technology was totally analog. So what if the theme is national integration. In 5 minutes video time, the original managed to show (then) present day achievers, some common people, some common people's occupations, superstars(then) from bollywood. It also managed to show fleeting scenes from every state in India - TN,AP,K,Ka,Mh,Guj,Raj,P,UP,O,WB,As,Manipur or Nagaland Or Tripura, (not sure about Bihar).

I wish the producers of PMSTM will find better things to do, and do them in better ways atleast in future.

Not intending to watch part2 of PMSTM. Ever.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Winds of Change

Winds of change blowing strong
I know not how and what will go wrong

Is this a passing phase? my mind asks
Why do you fear? my friend asks

I wish I could hide
Like a snail would in its shell
Until changes the tide
And time gets well

Should I let go?
Should I hold on strong?
Multitude of these questions
Continue to throng

My brain's going wild
My mind's eternally a child
In between these two
Very poor is my plight

Shall I Move away
To places unseen
For only when there is dust
Is a beam of sun light seen.

But Change is Constant
Constant is Change
If this is reality
Why is it so strange?

This is dedicated to Divya aka Kutti Pisasu, who (like me) is feeling topsy turvy about everything around her.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Why Narendra Modi should not become Prime Minister of India

I have great appreciation for Mr Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Gujarat, India. The media and hence a lot of people give the colour of religion, autocracy, and too much control. So much that they provide automatic prime time coverage for him, without him moving so much as a finger for it.

So, do you think all that is false, is what you might want to ask me. My answer is simple. What the media reports I have not seen/experienced. Nor has anyone I know closely. And I firmly believe this - as much as it tries to position itself as the torch bearer of truth for the common people, the news media industry in itself is a sort of a racket considering its eternal quest for sensational news. And when I see good work being carried out successfully in whatever little measure, I believe that one should appreciate it, understand how it has succeeded, take cues from it and move on to apply it in one's own life and works.

So when I try to analyse Mr.Narendra Modi's profile as chief minister, as administrator of a state, I give the news media's information a benefit of doubt and take it that this man has failed on certain counts. But after that, he has also succeeded on certain counts. And I want to emulate the right things that he has done. And I believe everyone should do the same. Complain, crib and cry over his mistakes. But after that if you dont learn from his successes, then you have succeeded in one thing - in failing to make a rational observation.

And if we say that Mr.Narendra Modi should become Prime Minister of India next, it means this - We promise to be inefficient cribbing people, who know to complain and blame, but do not comprehend the word "action". Its like promising to yourself that you will certainly look to appoint a person to flush your toilet, rather than just extend your hand and turn the lever.

Come, and be the force that should take India forward. 
Think about it.

PhotoCredit -