Saturday, December 31, 2005

Known Highlights of 2006

For all the green-activists out there, Olduvai theory predicts that World Oil production is to peak in 2006. So folks, start thinking green!

Some known highlights of 2006:

in Politics:

* Anticipated retirement of Alan Greenspan
* Change of Guard expected in Brazil, Italy, Israel, Palestine, Canada, Fiji, Peru, Ukraine, Uganda

in Film:

* in March: Basic Instinct 2, Ice Age 2
* in May: The Da Vinci Code, MI 3
* in June: Pixar's Cars, Superman Returns
* in July: Pirates of Caribbean: Dead men's Chest

in other Media:

* BBC World Service to end radio broadcasting in Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Greek, Hungarian, Kazakh, Polish, Slovak, Slovenian and Thai.
* TV shows Ending this year: Will and Grace, The 70's show
* Will be able to register .eu domain name for European Union.

in Music:

* in May: AR Rahman's stage musical: The Lord of the Rings
* 2006, The Mozart Year, 250th birthday of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

in Sports:

* XX Winter Olympic Games: Feb 2006 in Italy
* Commonwealth Games: Mar 2006 in Melbourne, Australia
* Soccer World Cup: June - July 2006 in Germany (UTC + 2 with Day Light Saving)
* 15th Asian Games: Doha, Qatar in Dec 2006 (UTC+3)

Monday, December 26, 2005

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Green Costs of Christmas in UK

  • 200,000 trees are felled to supply 1.7bn Christmas cards sent in the UK
  • 40,000 trees are used to make 8,000 tonnes of wrapping paper used for presents
  • Nearly 6m Christmas trees end up in landfill sites every January
  • The UK throws out 3m tonnes of extra waste over Christmas
(Source: BBC)

whew! What abt the giant guzzler, the United States? 2m trees for cards, 60m christmas trees and 30m tonnes of extra waste? Probably much higher!

Not so pretty Google Doodle

First Google doodle that does not end very pretty looking, though the idea is still good: http://www.google.com/doodle10.html

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Praying


Praying. Meenakshi temple
Originally uploaded by Claude Renault.
"Iha Samsaare Bahu Dustaare
Kripayaa Paare Paahi Murare"

(This eternal cycle of rebirth is hard to cross over. Save me from it, Oh merciful Lord !)

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Women Admissions

Here are a couple of graphs showing the percentage of girls admitted in 1996 and 2004 to BITS Pilani (peak years between '96 and '04 have also been marked):

DisciplineIn 1996In 2004Peakin Year
BE Chemical29.1742.3751.612000
BE Civil28.1334.6242.862003
BE EE21.4328.1334.551999
BE Mech6.1526.5828.42003
B.Pharm23.3346.1551.352003
M.M.S.5067.567.52004
BE CompSci30.1941.9449.472001
BE Instru31.2547.4649.182002
MSc Bio33.3369.05752003
MSc Chem17.2442.547.52003
MSc Economics9.6837.542.52003
MSc Math25.7137.7851.112003
MSc Physics13.5135.5635.562004
MSc Tech ET044.4462.52001
Msc Tech IS26.675864.291998




Data from this Source

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Monday, December 19, 2005

Overweights > Underweights

I am not stating the obvious. BBC reports that for the first time in human history, number of overweights rival the number of underweights. Thats so saddenning.

Bygone Days?


[r]
Originally uploaded by Babsi Jones.

NYC - Central Park Rink


NYC - Central Park Rink
Originally uploaded by RUKnight.
Where's the Kong?

Change to speed gear

Those laces are innovation. A simple and a great idea. Can be laced to any shoe. Available in different colors for the right styling for your shoe.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

San Francisco


San Francisco
Originally uploaded by !Habit Forming.
Still iconic with out the Golden Gate.

Dear Santa...from Harley


Dear Santa...from Harley
Originally uploaded by Cynr.
Santa, Grant these wishes dear...

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Netflix+

How about a wishlist for Netflix+? Netflix reviews your wishlist and then buys them once it decides the items in the list are non-porn (whatever its policies are) etc....

Friday, December 09, 2005

Googlers and del.icio.us

Given the fact that Google doesnt have a formidable equivalent tool for delicious (atleast publicly), I am inclined to believe that many Googlers must have been using delicious for tagging. Now that Yahoo! has bought the company, isnt it easy for yahoo! to keep a tab on the worlds and trajectories of these googlers? Isnt this a bigger issue for Web 2.0 in general, where players have the potential ability to lock up peoples data? Its easier to Do Evil once things fall into corporate hands (as corporations have lower moral and ethical standards. Yeah, thats one thing where sum is always less than the constiuents).

Anyways, Google is falling behind in this MyWeb area and thats one thing that sometimes makes me think of using the yahoo! toolbar.

Ajax and the Back button

Its snowing here and my shoes are proving to be slippery. So I decide to buy a pair of shoes from columbia.com. Their whole catalogue is thru a javascript menu that nests upto four levels ( What We Make >> Men's Items >> Outdoor Casual Footwear >> Outdoor and trail). I carefully choose 'Outdoor and trail', I am taken to a new page with those shoes. Now, I think "May be I'll find something in 'Trek and Travel'....Guess what? I'm stuck. Theoretically, I've made my way thru three levels of the catalogue tree. But when I hit back, I am taken back to the homepage. (why? because technically, i moved by just one page). From the 'Outdoor and trail' page, is there an alternate way i can browse thru the catalogue? NO. I've to take the "What We Make" menu on the top and start all over again.

So, moral of the story? Isnt Back button more to do with how you design the overall interaction? Isnt it about providing a means to get back, when you expect somebody is gonna need it?

Crediblity and Ads

Some times, its so hard to understand why do credible organizations like Discovery, CNN (Credible?, I know), The Hindu, even NY Times...allow a mess of ad-banners and popup windows! BBC, ofcourse, is the cleanest in terms of advertisements. Isnt 'keeping the site clean of advertisements and pop-ups' a factor of quality and credibility?

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Bank of America and Laundry

I was thinking about Bank of America's new 'Keep the Change' scheme. Isnt that change precious for laundry? Isnt the amassing quarters for laundry usually thru Starbucks and its ilk?

Heavy Snow at Fishers


Heavy Snow at Fishers
Originally uploaded by kaysov.
Good to see snow all over...

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

"Homecoming is Ever Present"

I found some great world music on NPR today. Rachid Taha is a leading Rai musician. He's a second generation Algerian immigrant to France and is now one of the most sought after artisits in France. He's nominated by the BBC for the World Music Awards too. I liked Ya Rayah and Mamachi tracks in particular. Ya Rayah is a widely popular Algerian song that vaguely means "the feeling of homecoming is always present among first generation immigrants." Wonder how this song is perceived after the recent French riots. There is a more recent track called 'Tekitoi', that sounds like a Bollywood remix. You should give a try. (All tracks available on iTunes Music Store)

I got one other track called "My Comfort Remains" by Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Michael Brook. I think I am falling in love with Sufi music.

All white with snow


All white with snow
Originally uploaded by kaysov.
Its very bright with the reflecting light.

National Cheese Emporium

Sometime back, when I was trying out yahoo video search, I found this classic little piece of animation called "National Cheese Emporium". I thought it was short, yet brilliant. Only today, I learn that it was a Monty Python sketch ! I should have recognized Sir John Cleese's voice in the animation.

Monday, December 05, 2005

12 F does this


12 F does this
Originally uploaded by kaysov.
Its was 12F today here in Fishers

NYTimes Photo essay on India's Golden Quadrilateral

This photo essay points out some glaring differences between North and South in terms of speed and quality of the road work, which I find a little alarming and disturbing. As North falls behind South in virtually all progressive aspects of society, the South is vulnerable to phenomenon like huge exodus to its urban areas. (Just like Eastern China Vs. Inland China). South in no way is equipped with enough infrastructure to cope up with it.

Luckily, "Yeh Madrasi tho bekaar ke cheez hai" attitude of average-North Indian may act in favor of South.

When I think about it again, I realize that I am talking about things which are already occuring. Well educated large North Indian populations exist in Bangalore and Hyderabad. I think I am fearing something like "Thousands of Jobless desparate Biharis littering Delhi".

Sunday, December 04, 2005