Monday, August 28, 2006

A country within a country

Just back from a week long work/ vacation trip. This was my first trip to the other side of the country. In the 4 years that I have lived in the US, this is my first trip to the East Coast. And the experience was filled with more unexpected things than I thought it would be. For a start, this was the first time, I got lost while trying to get to my destination. Well, actually, I didn't really get lost, it was just that I thought I was and so ended up wasting time driving back and forth and thus ended up the taking the longest time I have ever taken to cover 30 miles.

Some of the distinct differences I saw between the East and West coast I noted were

1. Much more diversity of people in the west coast, than the east.
2. I think the west coast is much more naturally scenic
3. I think the east coast has a lot more history embedded in it.

Update... Feb 11th, 2007... I actually saved the draft of this message on 8/28/06 and logged backed in today. As hard as I try... I just can not seem to be able to continue the train of thought... I guess I got lost again (this time virtual though)... well.. let's just move on...

Friday, July 14, 2006

Back in action

I've been thinking about what a graphical depiction of my blog activity would look like.... hmm... let's see.... picture a graph with number/ frequency of blog posts on the Y-Axis and days on the X-Axis..... hmm... what would that look like? well... one thing is for sure... it's definitely going to be closer to a digital pulse than a sinusoidal one.... seems like I go through plases of hightened activity and those of inactivity... but never anything in between....

Well... so I guess that would make this post the end of a rising edge now wouldn't it? Too geeky... yeah... that's what happens when you spend too many hours in the lab on a Friday... note to self!

Officially back in action

Monday, April 10, 2006

10Ks or a piece of cake?

Yep... that's right... the 10Ks were a piece 'o cake this time 'round. I finished in about 55 mins and it seemed like I could keep going... :)

The only downside, all the running cost me 4 lbs... so now, no running for atleast a week, just hogging and weights!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

A very special post !

This is a very special post...

... isn't it?

... Don't you see it?

... oh,well... what makes this post so special....?
It's TIME STAMP... get it? :-)

** clue: write the time in hours.minutes followed by the date in mm.dd.yy format.... !

Monday, April 03, 2006

Is All fools day really a fools day in ALL??

I somehow let this one pass by (remember my blogs mission statement? :))... but luckily one of my friends brought it up..

What started the april fools day tradition?

Some research reveals that the origins of this bizzare day may have more to do with a change in the calendar, than anything else:

The closest point in time that can be identified as the beginning of this tradition was in 1582, in France. Prior to that year, the new year was celebrated for eight days, beginning on March 25. The celebration culminated on April 1. With the reform of the calendar under Charles IX, the Gregorian Calendar was introduced, and New Year's Day was moved to January 1.

However, communications being what they were in the days when news traveled by foot, many people did not receive the news for several years. Others, the more obstinate crowd, refused to accept the new calendar and continued to celebrate the new year on April 1. These backward folk were labeled as "fools" by the general populace. They were subject to some ridicule, and were often sent on "fools errands" or were made the butt of other practical jokes.

This harassment evolved, over time, into a tradition of prank-playing on the first day of April. The tradition eventually spread to England and Scotland in the eighteenth century. It was later introduced to the American colonies of both the English and French. April Fool's Day thus developed into an international fun fest, so to speak, with different nationalities specializing in their own brand of humor at the expense of their friends and families.

In Scotland, for example, April Fool's Day is actually celebrated for two days. The second day is devoted to pranks involving the posterior region of the body. It is called Taily Day. The origin of the "kick me" sign can be traced to this observance.

Mexico's counterpart of April Fool's Day is actually observed on December 28. Originally, the day was a sad remembrance of the slaughter of the innocent children by King Herod. It eventually evolved into a lighter commemoration involving pranks and trickery.

Pranks performed on April Fool's Day range from the simple, (such as saying, "Your shoe's untied!), to the elaborate. Setting a roommate's alarm clock back an hour is a common gag. Whatever the prank, the trickster usually ends it by yelling to his victim, "April Fool!"

Practical jokes are a common practice on April Fool's Day. Sometimes, elaborate practical jokes are played on friends or relatives that last the entire day. The news media even gets involved. For instance, a British short film once shown on April Fool's Day was a fairly detailed documentary about "spaghetti farmers" and how they harvest their crop from the spaghetti trees.

April Fool's Day is a "for-fun-only" observance. Nobody is expected to buy gifts or to take their "significant other" out to eat in a fancy restaurant. Nobody gets off work or school. It's simply a fun little holiday, but a holiday on which one must remain forever vigilant, for he may be the next April Fool!

Friday, March 31, 2006

10 days to 10Ks!

10 more days to my 10K/ 6mi run in Santa Barbara! I am seriously hoping to better my time over last year (1hr and 16 mins). Now that I think about it, that wasn't bad for a run without any training at all.

This time around, I've been a little more disciplined, been running regularly for about a month now. I ran a 5 miles on Wed and 3 today... the plan is to peak this sunday by doing 6 miles and then "taper off" over next week, with no running at all on Thursday/ Friday, to accumulate strength for the main event next Saturday... I just hope I can keep my average pace close to 6.5 so I can complete under an hr this time!

I realize this ain't a major marathon, but I am trying to attack it with the same planning that goes into training for a real marathon!

Okay, that said, I have just enough time to upload a new pic on my other blog... hmm... wassit gonna be today... wassit gonna be :)

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Idea for a new feature on Blogger

I was surfing through some blogs that I got to through some comments posted by other bloggers on mine. This seemed like a way to find new and interesting blogs (interesting because, more often than not, poeple who comment on your blog tend to have similar interests as you).

If you have used orkut (another online community oriented portal owned by Google) you probably know that as you browse profiles of people, Orkut keeps track of the shortest path from you to the person, whose profile you are looking at. In Orkut, each member maintains a list of friends and when you look at a profile the "trails" are formed by looking at various paths (through friend lists) connecting the two profiles in question.

Now, although blogger does not have the concept of a friends list, we do have comments from other bloggers, and so I wonder if it might be possible to introduce a similar way of providing a "trail of comments" wherever possible? That way, when you reach a blog (and you are logged in) you know what all different paths you have taken to get there in the past...

Thursday, March 23, 2006

My new (second) Blog.... More show, less talk :)

The idea to float a new blog came up as I was cleaning up my personal laptop and drifted into browsing through my photo collection. Most of the pics I have now were taken in the last (almost 4) few years, since I moved to the US. And, since I lived in Los Angeles for the first 2, in Santa Barbara for the next one and half and now I am in San Diego, most of the pictures are of places in the California. So, anyways, I thought why not pick out some interesting ones and share them with the world and (hopefully) get some people travelling... hiking... running... going out...

I called it "I've beeen places" and named the url (link on the right side bar)

Welp... that's that... hope you like 'em!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Bogus Post on Google News

Found this article on InformationWeek..

"...A 16-year-old Google fan was able to get a bogus press release announcing his hiring by the search engine on Google News, and the distributor of the release has been removed as a source for the automated news service, Google said Wednesday..."

"...The release, which has been removed from I-Newswire and Google News, said the boy had been hired to work on security flaws in Google's Web mail service Gmail, according to a blog posting from StepForth Placement Inc., a consulting service for getting higher listings on search engine results. The announcement, which was attributed to Google co-founder and president Larry Page, also said the teen-ager would work from his New Jersey home and his earnings would be placed in a bank account for his education...."

Read more here

This seems to point somewhat similar flaws I found with the search engines news service and mentioned in an earlier blog post titled "Is Google Letting me (us) down? ".

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Moto MING SmartPhone

Just released today and features Intel's Xscale Architecture.

Motorola's "MING" Smartphone

But what I liked the most of all is the naming, which reflects the device's charecteristics in Chinese! In general, I think Moto's Idea of naming its mobile devices with more user friendly 4 lettered words is a great idea.. I mean what would you be more likely to remember RAZR, SLVR (pronounced Sliver and NOT Silver) or A900, C183?

Oh, BTW the RAZR's are back in action , after a short disruption:

PS: I know this blog is meant to be about ideas, but I can't help throwing in some Moto PDA (public display of affection) from time to time

Sunday, March 12, 2006

The "Omlette Master"

I think I have reached a point in my life where I can confidently say that I have mastered the art of Omlette Making (you could throw in a "healthy" and a "vegetarian" in there, if you will). It took a while (a few years to be precise) but I'm glad I am finally there :P
So, without further do, here it is:


1/2 small onion (1/4th if big)
1/2 small tomato (the firmer the better)
coupla green chillies (smallest Jalapeneos you can find in Alby's)
1/4th green bell pepper (optional)
1/4th orange bell pepper (optional)
ginger paste (optional)
3-4 teaspoons of olive oil (butter if, I'm bad)
2-3 eggs.
Salt and Pepper to taste
grated chese (if, I'm bad)

*Optional: may be dropped with no loss of functionality and little loss of taste.
**I'm bad indicates you are a fitness freak like me and would prefer not to use it.


1. Chop onion into REALLY small pieces (cubes). Do same with bell peppers and tomato.
2. Chop green chillies into thin rings.
3. Pour few drops olive oil in an average size saucepan. Heat a little.
4. Add onions, green chillies and ginger paste saute for 1-2 mins.
4. Then add tomatoes, bell peppers and saute. Squeeze lime.
5. After a few mins, collect all that in a plate and place aside.
6. Beat two eggs really well (the more forthy, the better).
7. Take a little olive oil (butter if, I'm bad) in a sauce pan (I use the same one as before) and spread it around. Heat for a few mins, then turn heat very low.
8. Add beaten eggs, and cook on low. Close the sauce pan with a cover (this is THE KEY, allows the top side of the omlette to be STEAM COOKED, as well).
9. open the cover and add the sauted veggies in the center of the omlette. Add grated cheese on top (if, I'm bad).
10. Fold the omlette in a three fold (fold from two ends, so that they meet in the middle.
11. cook on low flame with cover for a couple more minutes.
12. Enjoy with ketchup, or a mixture of ketchup and mustard!!

Shorter Cut:

1. Drop all optional items
2. Dont fry veggies separately. Just add them raw to beaten eggs.
3. But remember to cook on low flame with cover.
4. Turn omlette around, after cooking one side for about 3-4 mins.

Monday, March 06, 2006


We Celebrated NATIONAL ENGINEERS WEEK TODAY (Albeit a lil late :P)

We had a nice "Ice-Cream Social" at Lunch, today!... Yummmm :)
I had the Haagen-Dazs Dark Chocolate Bar ... and it wasn't a random choice:

Dark Chocolate is Healthy Chocolate - Source WebMD


Saturday, March 04, 2006

Is Google letting me (us) down?

I use google all the time, I mean like atleast 20-30 times a day at the minimum, and I do remember that there was a time (somewhere in the past, 4-5 years ago) when things were a little different. I wasn't as reliant on search engines for information (not sure if it was less dependence on the web or the fact that India was still playing catch up with the broadband revolution, leaving me poking along with my 28.8 kbps dial-up modem) but, when I did try to find information "out there" it usually was through a portal called Yahoo!. Now, I am not sure when this switch to a different search engine happened, but I was convinced it was for the best. But, lately, I have been getting some strong indications, that maybe I should consider reverting back?!!

Well, it all started a few weeks ago. I like to keep up with any news/ releases/ blogs about Motorola and so I have this automatic news alert setup with Google News (I think I have had this for about a year now), that sends me an alert whenever it finds a few news articles relating to Motorola (or, to be more specific, articles with occurances of the word "Motorola in them). So, anyway in one of these alerts a few weeks ago, I learnt that Motorola had been awarded the National Medal of Technology by president Bush. I was happy to be notified real fast and automatically, but I wasn't very happy with that particular article (was very terse and lacked photographs) and so I decided to go look for more articles on the same topic "out-there". Snap, CTRL-T on firefox, enter goo (and ofcourse it was on the history list). I enter the phrase "motorola bush award" and I expect to see the Motorola News releases page" in the first few links (if not the very first), but to my surprise I didn't find anything relevant in the whole first page of search results. I figured it was too early to be looking for public articles on the topic (it probably had to do with my strong reliance on google, and that it can never be wrong) and went back to my business. I tried back a few hours later only to be disappointed again. This time, I thought why not give my old pal Yahoo a shot and I was amazed to see Motorola News center page show up as the very first link!

Second instance. This mornings (Saturday, Mar 4th) Motorola news alert had this article in it. The article is titled "Apple and Motorola launch iPod Phone hybrid". I was excited for a moment, thinking that Motorola and Apple finally settled things and decided to bring out a "True iTunes phone with more than 100 songs" (actually, this prompted my previous post as well ;)). All that excitement quickly turned into disappontment when I realized this was an article about the ROKR and that too the very first version of the phone released in Sep '05). I was really surprised why such an old article showed up in the search. Now, I do understand, that this could be because the article was published late and so the website ( is the one to blame.

Nevertheless, these occurances have prompted me to re-evaluate my search engine choice!! So much so, that I am seriously considering running comparison searches between Google and Yahoo! from time to time...

PS: And ofcourse, I understand, that at the bottom of it all, these guys (Yahoo, Google and the other gizillian search engines out there) provide us web search for FREE!

On Moto's SLVR and ROKR Phones...

I just couldn't help pass this up. I'm sure a lot of people must know about Motorola's two main iTunes supporting cell phones - the (earlier) ROKR and the (latest) SLVR L7. These are, no doubt, very cool phones and a we get to see a lot of reviews, articles and blogs about 'em. But, there are a couple things that upset me. A major portion of the articles written seem to criticize Motorola for setting the song limit on iTunes at a 100 songs. The original ROKR didn't take off as well as expected (atleast no where close to the super successful RAZR), and I think the reason for this was because, the iPod Nano and other iPod releases coincided with it and most people were expecting an iPod and in the process forgot that the ROKR was supposed to be a real good phone with many of the features that most current generation phones support and oh by the way, it also has iTunes. Instead, all the hype (surrounding the iPod releases and roumors of partnership between Motorola and Apple) ended up making people expect exactly the opposite of what was intended - people were expecting the ROKR to be a iPod that is also a phone... well, bad marketing you say? possible.

Even more upsetting than that are the comments being made about the SLVR. I think Moto did an EXCELLENT job with this phone, by bringing the super cool, ground breaking, iconic looks of the RAZR to ardent candy-bar phone fans (myself included!). Most articles I have read are all praises about the looks, the form factor and other advanced features of the phone. But, for some reason, a major proportion of articles can't help sneaking in the fact (usually at the end of the articles) that the phone (SLVR) still has the same 100 song limit. What upsets me, is that do these people ever stop to think that maybe this is because of a business agreement between Motorola and Apple? (Note: this is purely a common sense guess and i have no information to support it). I mean, think about it, why would Motorola be so stupid to put the same limit back in the SLVR, when in reality they have made so many other advances in technology (like USB charging, removable/ expandable memory cards)? Clearly if they could add more memory, allowing more songs couldn't have been much harder. So, maybe this is a restriction Apple imposed, after all (would you buy a iPod if your phone carried, say 500 iTunes and also did an excellent job as a phone?, I don't think so!). That said, it seems like the SLVR's ultra cool looks and affordable price are really doing the trick that the ROKR could not and the phone seems to be selling up to expectation.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Saturday, February 25, 2006

Idea for a "Projector-Laptop"

This one came up a couple of days ago during a presentation (involving a conventional Projector) at work, and applies a breakthrough technology (not yet deployed as products) to another area.

I came accross this article a while ago, reporting that Seimens Researchers have developed a cell phone with a built-in projector . This surely is a super cool invention that promises to make life a heck of a lot easier for those busy business guys constantly having to setup bulky projectors, and my hats off two the guys at Seimens. But, I was just wondering if this might be one of those scenarios where the value of an invention is increased by simple re-using the technology in a different application.

In short, if it is possible to integrate a projector with a cell phone without significantly increasing its size or sacrificing portability, couldn't the same be done for Laptops?. I think yes! (Listening laptop makers? Maybe whose names start with a "D" and have 2 "L's" ;)).

As always, please feel free to beat the crap out of me, on this one ;-)

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

This time its for real

Yep... I hope to stick to my promise this time and resolve to try and post something new more frequently. For those interested in knowing, I've been preoccupied with way too many things over the last few months, but when all the dust settled (!) I had ended up in a new job ( one that I have always hoped to work as ) in the company I've always dreamt of working at and in the place I've always wanted to live in . This will be my second job outa school and allows me to apply as many of my skills as possible.

Well, enough of that, with all the basics in place, its time to get back to the more serious stuff :P(Notice, I've already changed my location information here from Santa Barbara to San Diego)

Wish me luck! :)