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Monday, January 30, 2006
The Chained Elephant
Posted at 11:24 AM by Shikha Choudhury

They say mindsets constitute the present and future of an individual. Well, they say this for a reason.
It is what you think...that you become. Unfortunately, even today, a lot of us are forced to be conditioned under certain mindsets which have become an integral component of our lives and often the reason of our failures. We refuse to change, to explore new potentials and opportunities which maybe dormant within us...There cannot be any limitations on opportunities and dreams...we set our own limitations with our belief systems. Read this anecdote and you'll realise the importance of mindsets and continuous improvement:

A baby elephant born in a circus is trained from an early age to perform in the acts. After each performance, the elephant master takes the elephant outside and ties a chain around its ankle. Using a mallet, he hammers the chain into the ground to stop the elephant from escaping. The baby elephant pulls and pulls, but cannot break free. This happens after every performance.
The elephant grows, but the master continues to use the same chain. Eventually the elephant reaches its full size and still the master uses the same chain. However, over the years the elephant has stopped trying to break free from the chain, no longer even bothering to try.
It appears so obvious that all the elephant has to do, with its adult strength, is to pull once and it would be free, but the elephant has been conditioned to believe that it cannot break the chain.


If we cannot recognise the consequences of our limiting beliefs..we can never realise the immense potential of our future. Any change begins with the first step. It is this first step that lies between you and your dreams.
So go ahead...don't hesitate..make a your dream..and release the chained elephant in YOU

Saturday, January 28, 2006
You Ain't Wrong
Posted at 7:35 AM by Aditya

sometimes we do things that we're not proud of. things at which we look back and think, 'why oh why did i do that?'. things which you'll never want others to know ... if they don't already know. everyone has done something like that or the other, and everyone has seen what the consequences can be. i'm not here to tell you how bad you've been, and how disrespectful and derragatory you are. i'm here to praise you.

not a lot of people understand the folly in their actions. not many see that they've done something wrong. hypothetical justifications to suit ones situation is the first refuge of the guilty mind. and so strong is the temptation, that people actually begin to believe that that is exactly what happened, and they are not the guilty but the victim! that, is not who you are!

you are one of the many few, who have understood, analyzed and accepted the fact that what you did was wrong, and because of your actions the ones around you might have felt hurt, offended, or did not leave with a very good feeling. atleast you know that much. that is the best start. knowledge provokes thought. and thought, leads to actions. now, you'll begin to rectify the mistakes, and come out more learned and better for the experience. you will think twice before making the same decision and choice again.

i don't mean to sound like a spiritual lecturer, but this comes from something that happened last night. i'm not proud of it, neither do i feel guilty about it. i just think it was an experience that i should have gone through to understand why its wrong. hopefully, you have people around you to show that its wrong, like i did. i thank them (they know who they are) and hope, you go away feeling better and more educated after reading this.

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Tuesday, January 24, 2006 out!
Posted at 4:48 PM by Aditya has been having quite a lot of problems for the past few days. there was a short outage a while back, and i think they changed a few of their feed management and syndication techniques which messed up the freshtags navigation hack for a while. right now they don't seem to be working properly once more, or maybe its just my net connection and browser! (which im doubtful of)

hopefully the yahoo is not the cause behind all this mayhem, and whatever it is, they'll be able to solve it! hopefully!

edit: it's back!

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the 100% rule
Posted at 3:53 PM by Aditya

we are governed by certain principals, and the certain rules. our mind functions in a certain way, and our actions are the result of what we feel and what we think. man is the only animal which can reach a balance between feeling and thinking. he can understand the consequences of his actions, and then with a certain result in mind can effectively dedicate himself to the task. but, the question here is how much?

i was thinking about it a few days back, and though its a question of sentiments, emotions and feelings, i believe there is still a mathematical relation to it. the equations remain to be invented, but the basic theology goes like this. just like sherlock holmes once described the mind as an attic having finite ability to store furniture (information, as is the case with the mind) ... so is the fact that the result of an action is influenced by the sum of two variables - what the mind thinks, and what the heart feel

the mind is something which contains intelligence. its rationality, practicality and intelligence clumped into one small place. all those three factors affect each other and hence the final output from that part of the body. the mind will always direct the body to do whatever is the more sensible thing, and whatever is the right thing. it will never make us do that might result in personal harm, pain ... or even something that might affect the person negatively. hence, the most pragmatic approach!

the heart, is the opposite. it'll bid to do whatever causes the least amount of pain to others, and one it loves. no matter the pain, hurt or thought involved. the righteousness or rationalities are forgotten, or pushed aside. if something can be done which will rid someone it loves off pain and discomfort, it will not think twice before pushing the body to go ahead with it. all it wants is the person it loves to be happy.

now, the final action is the sum of these two variables, and which of the two has more influence (higher value). the ideal situation, which surfaces in very few cases, is when both the variables share an equal magnitude and hence have an equal influence. in this case, the step taken is usually the only one possible. however, as in most cases, if any of the two takes a higher value, its tendencies will dominate the final action taken, and hence the consequences will be seen. now, how do we know which one will have the higher influence? that, my friends, depends from people to people. ones who are akin to thinking and acting, will have a more developed response to reality, and hence think hard and well before they take any step. but the ones who feel, and are sensitive to things, will usually have a higher value for the 'heart' variable, and hence their actions will be to first comfort their loved ones, and then think about themselves.

but, in the end, man is a very complicated animal, and hence there many sub-variables to these two variables which have to be taken under consideration. those, to list here will take long since they are many, including the proximity to the people involved in a situation, how the outcome might affect them, how the outcome might affect the do-er, and so on. hence i'm not going into that aspect of it. with this knowledge, maybe it'll be easier for you to predict what yours and others behaviour and reaction to certain situations might be. again, i might be wrong with my theory, but hopefully i'm not. any arguments (as is usual with the theories) are more than welcome!

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Monday, January 23, 2006
the web, version 2.0
Posted at 3:13 PM by Aditya

i mentioned in quite a few posts, especially this one that the latest buzzwords to hit the market were the web 2.0 and categorization and stuff. that time i wasn't too sure what they were, just like a lot of people right now are absolutely clueless as to what the terms actually mean or what they stand for. today, i'll try to explain what they really mean, and how it works. that post is important, because many aspects of web 2.0 are mentioned in that, but i'll quote them here too.
to cover the weakness of one language, programmers can now combine functionalities of various languages, and overcome the obstacles placed in front of them due do time and lack of updates. a brilliant example is GMail, with a backend of C and C++, and the interface being dynamically generated by Javascript functions, its the ultimate example we have today of what creativity and knowledge can achieve. ofcourse, microsoft and yahoo and constantly trying to better on GMail in every aspect, but knowing google and what they have done in the past, based on sheer scripters strength alone, they can overtake any advancements made by those two.
the web 2.0 is, simply put, the second phase in the development and growth of the internet, its features and applications. web sites are dynamic, which contain up-to-date information ... content is organised and categorised, and shared with other people. this helps increase productivity. a more open source kind of approach, and everyone can add and contribute quite literally. the initial internet (coined now as web 1.0) contained static pages, which would get updated once a month, or once a year to reflect major changes only. search engines were used to look for information, and once received, all collected data was discarded after consumption. web 2.0 tends to differ, by creating much more interactive and smart pages, which track and understand people usage patters, supporting their habits automatically with minimum human intervention. there are social networks which help people connect with each other (either anonymously or via aliases/nicknames) which leads to faster organisation and retrieval of information and knowledge. but probably the greatest accomplishment of web 2.0 is segregate serious proffessionals from the casual user. websites that comply to the new standards can only be made by proffessionals who have a sound knowledge of programming and scripting methods. no tom, dick or harry can make a webpage or a site which can be classified as web 2.0 compliant.

Web 2.0

A website could be said to be built using Web 2.0 technologies if it featured a number of the following techniques:



- as defined by the wikipedia

sites such as and flickr,. which offer the concept of social bookmarks, tagging, organising and sharing are proper examples of what web 2.0 aims to do and achieve. it also increases the worth of the internet. investors value the internet at over a trillion dollars (thats a lot of money!). corporations such as google and yahoo are the forefront of the web 2.0 age, and hence are helping facilitate the start and growth of the adoption of these standards by others. web 2.0 also has the potential to revolutionize the way that knowledge workers work within the enterprise. web office is a platform of web 2.0 based tools that knowledge workers will use to efficiently communicate and work with large groups of internal and external partners.

however, a reality check reveals that many websites that claim to be web 2.0 simply pick and choose a couple of ideas usually associated with web development, while ignoring the rest. for instance, a lot of people pushing web 2.0 talk about well-formed, validating html, however not many production sites actually adhere to this standard. many people will also talk about web sites degrading gracefully (designing a website so that its fundamental features are still useable by people who are accessing it with software that does not support every technology employed by the site), however this is the concept generally most blatantly ignored by sites claiming to be web 2.0. In fact, the addition of AJAX scripting to websites will often render the website completely unusable to anyone browsing with JavaScript turned off, or using a slightly older browser.

but, at the end of the day ... the internet is growing, and offering itself a platform for serious developers to show off what they can achieve and constantly push the envelope. web designing is no longer looked down upon by the computing society, atleast not by the ones who have tasted what the web can actually be. its going to take a while, but all good things come to those who wait! how about you grab a javascript book and join the fray? :P

[with references and sections quoted from wikipedia]

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Sunday, January 22, 2006
The Early Bird
Posted at 3:26 PM by Aditya

its not an unknown fact that from class 11, we begin to be distributed into our various streams of our choosing, so that we can start to focus on what we want to do furthur after school, and then as our career.
but what happens is that even in an effective education system as india's, the pot holes mar the brilliance that emerges at the end of the long and dark tunnel. students have to slog, and slog they do because to get anywhere in a competitive country like india, you have to do better than the others. but even before others, its the colleges that you have to beat. with unworldly scores of 95%+ as the pre-requisite for any course that might catch your fancy, you are left gasping for air with limbs thrashing wildly. that is probably why so many students today pick the alternative, and stay away from the heavy duty courses which demand such scores. they go in for careers in law, sociology, psychology ... courses which demand excellent marks only in their respective subjects, not overall aggregates.

but, i have always been for the system of specialised institutes. ones such as FIIT-JEE, and Vidyamandir Classes, but with more options for stream pursuit. for example, i being a heavily music oriented person would love to join Berklee and begin a course in music right from day one. that'll not only give me enough time to be able to master my instrument and the prowess required, but also trap the maximum energy and enthusiasm that i can muster. the worst thing to do would be to let a creative mind rot in the labs or theories of the days gone by. a little knowledge of everything is a must, i agree ... but what the deuce of a difference does it make to me how an item splits into different particles when a neutron strikes it. all i need to know is that happens, and thats how nuclear fission takes place which gives us energy ... and i can go back to playing my guitar and learning performance and playing techniques. do you see what a trifle it is, and how bad it can be? i'm spending two whole years of my life learning and doing something which i will never use again in my life. maybe maths and computers and a little bit of physics, yes ... but no chemistry definitely. such profound knowledge of these respective subjects is redundant in today's day when we have machines and computers aiding every process, and carrying them out completely in many cases.

why such atrocities on young minds? why not let them pursue what they want to. the sports enthusiasts can join academies and become professional sportsmen. music lovers can take a hobby, and make a career out of it. science lovers can furthur divide into respective institutions which teach different branches of science. the possibilities are endless. this also allows the freedom for individuals to break away from a monotonous study routine, and meet with like-minded people. where they learn faster, and hence mature sooner. there can be annual fests where all these institutions can organise and work together to award students from different fields who come together and use their knowledge and creativity to invent something completely unique. such a system would have caused the invention of something like the electric guitar much sooner! also, these will produce potential leaders in their respective fields.

there will be so much that can be achieved. ofcourse, a few who might dislike what they choose in the beginning should have the freedom to change to the subject and the field of their liking whenever they want. that keeps the motivations going high! :)

the downsides to such a method of education might be the growth of communist brains. some might get too attached to their field and hence for its betterment, sacrifice or hurt others. these will i'm sure be exceptions to the rule, since the 'fests' and get-together events will allow everyone to understand and acknowledge every other field, while giving them a fair idea of the shortcomings and the beauty of their own choices.

such a realisation can only work to better the mind, and the way it handles life and situations. i hope to see such a system of education being implemented for students at a young age, so that time is not wasted in harnessing true potential, and child prodigies. remember, 'the early bird catches the worm'!

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The Lonely Heart's Club
Posted at 10:33 AM by Aditya

just the fancy of music caught me the other day (nothing new there!), and i started going through the profiles and biographies of the greatest rock bands the world has produced. then, i began looking at indian rock bands, and rock performances scheduled for this year, since the article in the delhi times (mentioned here) so graciously stated that rock has come of age in india.

small gigs keep happening all over the place, and a few names are known, might be even famous in their own parts ... but out of the biggest rock acts and concerts of the year, only one is taking place in delhi -the great indian rock x. its from the 17th to 19th february, so if you're interested, i'll suggest you begin gearing up, because the boards will be right around the corner, and you won't get to see it if you ain't well prepared for atleast your first exam. that said, its going to be (hopefully) amazing! :)

there is also a concert by led zeppelica and parikrama at saarang '06 which will be held in chennai. GIR is more a platform for competing bands, and you may hear songs you have no clue about. atleast with saarang, the songs will be familiar (zeppelica is a cover artist of led zeppelin). was this the awakening that dt was talking about? i hope not! we should be able to hold concerts of the magnitude and scales of live 8. surely we have the infrastructure to hold something of that sort with two stadiums and lots of open ground (pragati maidan)? what we have to see if politics of today allow it to be done!

of course! it can only get better, 'cuz we have nothing to go back to! the times are a'changin'! :D

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Thursday, January 19, 2006
the semicoloned paradise
Posted at 10:23 PM by Aditya

the greatest high that some get is the amount of control you get over whatever you are presenting. so many possibilities of adding functionalities, eye-candies, content, images, colours ... every part of it is fascinating, regardless of the time and effor that might be required to create something out of a vision. the sheer thought of what the vision might culminate into makes people just delve straight into the books, resources and to get their hands dirty. at the end of it, if the vision becomes a reality ... its such an amazing sense of achievement, that only one who's felt will understand its true magnitude.

today, the myriad languages offered to one who would want to try and create snippets of code to increase or improve functionality is intimidating. the basic languages such as XML, HTML and Javascript themselves can be twisted and turned to yield some amazing results. the perfect example is blogs. scripted powerhouses with content, looks and functionality. a blog truly represents the person. an unorganised and uncouth person will have a blog you'd never want to return to. but an organised and formal person will have everything in its correct place, and everything about the blog will just feel right.

blogs work to promote ideas, opinions to such a level that some people live through their blogs, making it their prime source of income. all this world needs is people who can share their knowledge and make it easier for the common man to acquire that knowledge and practice while building on it so that someday he can be a master and share his own experiences and little discoveries, inventions. very few people remain who still prefer to make it on their own, hunt for hours on the internet and pour hours over books which teach any language or concept thoroughly! not that people can't, but in the times when information is readily available ... why would anyone want to work for it?

with the settling of web applications, and now the latest buzzword being web 2.0 and userscripts, a lot of people want to try their hand at scripting and seeing what the fuss is all about. i know i want to ... thats the reason i frequent so many blogs, and keep myself updated about the latest hacks and integrations, because as soon as my school is over, i will begin educating myself on these ... so that i can too contribute to the sphere. joining the herd i will, but as they say, 'every drop adds to the ocean!'

speaking to johan of ecmanaut about how Javascript might hold up its own against the proper programming and scripting languages, this is what he had to say -->

.net, regardless of language in the family you pick, is for larger applications; if you want to make anything smaller than an executable of a few tens or hundred kilobyte, in .net, you can't, as the virtual machine alone requires that (says Joel on Software, which is one of the real heavyweights in the field). Javascript, by comparison, has a greased weasel approach to scale, and hardly comes with any cost at all, though it doesn't generate executable files. Instead, it's typically embedded in scriptable applications such as web browsers, and lives closer to the realm of data. SVG images, the vector graphics format that has just started to gather momentum, embeds it too.

I'd venture guessing that javascript at least has an expected lifetime of decades still.

though i haven't spoken to others about it, i'm sure they'll agree with johan on this one. since the web browsers have become such an integral part of the OS, and by my estimate, one of the most heavily used applications on a home/office computer, Javascript and its uses really do open up lot of opportunities for the masters to present their game! this is only the beginning, and the best is yet to come!

to cover the weakness of one language, programmers can now combine functionalities of various languages, and overcome the obstacles placed in front of them due do time and lack of updates. a brilliant example is GMail, with a backend of C and C++, and the interface being dynamically generated by Javascript functions, its the ultimate example we have today of what creativity and knowledge can achieve. ofcourse, microsoft and yahoo and constantly trying to better on GMail in every aspect, but knowing google and what they have done in the past, based on sheer scripters strength alone, they can overtake any advancements made by those two. these are only predictions of a loyal follower. the rest, the future holds!

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We ain't no legend, ain't no cause, we're just livin' for today!
Posted at 1:30 PM by Aditya

there was an article in delhi times, a really small one on the top left (in the blue box) which spoke of the rock scene finally settling in india, with bands coming up with hindi rock songs which appeal to many people and hence pull in a greater audience. it also said that rock, which was previously considered as loud music bordering on noise, is now looked on as music with deep meaning lyrics, and an instensity not found in other genres.

well, thank you! its about time they realised that rock is the king of all other genres when it comes to music. no other can boast of bigger names, and more famous songs than rockers. watching american idol yesterday, they showed clips of one guy who they labelled 'rocker', and who was trailer-ized as one who passed the first round, and is off to hollywood. i heard him sing, and boy does he have a voice! its good that rock is getting the recognition it needs even in competitions such as american idol with pop fanatics such as paula and simon. although its also true that rock has somehow lost the sheen of the years gone by. look at rock now, and all you see is shouting, hammering, pummeling and thrashing of instruments. the glory of rock somehow disappeared with the time, and yet there are crusaders like alter bridge and velvet revolver who fight on, to save the day, and keep the faith alive.

back to indi-rock. their are bands, and then there are gods. small bands like jal and strings who have managed to create a stir in the country, are nothing much but mere pawns on the board, with the bishops and rooks being better bands like indian ocean, or parikrama. i'm not sure if india has what it takes to roll out a band to the likes of maybe pink floyd or guns and roses. come up with guitarists who are as good as slash, tremonti, gilmour, adrian smith and be able to keep their ego to a minimum enough to be able to dedicate and pledge themselves to a band. no, we indians seek personal fame. thats why people like steve vatz go for solo careers ... because they know that the whole band getting recognition for their talent, is something they just can't tolerate.

why? why not look towards the greater cause, and take steps to put the king back on the throne. personal goals are irrelevant if the kingdom falls. personal gains are shortlived, if the army is killed. wake up people! and i know, wake up they will, because the call of rock can't be ignored for long. the call of the crunch, the rythm, the 6 strings cannot be blocked from the adrenaline that runs through the chosen ones. it just can't ... it just won't!

and now in the words of AC/DC --

We rock at dawn on the frontline, Like a bolt right outta the blue!
The sky's alight with the guitar bite, Heads will roll n' rock tonight!

We're just a battery for hire with the guitar fire, Ready and aimed at you!
Pick up your balls and land up your cannon, For the twenty-one gun salute!

For those about to rock, We salute you!!

give a listening to bas yeh meri kahaani / zinda hoon (strings). its a lovely song! :D

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the constant updates
Posted at 9:53 AM by Aditya

are the updates leaving you frustrated? do you think you don't know what is where in this blog anymore? have you even noticed the changes that have crept in since the last you showed up? do you even come here on a regular basis?

haha! sorry! anyway, i've slowly and steadily been removing features which i thought might be making the blog look and function fancier, but is slowing down the page loading time for people with slower connections, or browsers. i know people have broadband, but still, too many scripts and too many sections can only slow down the page, not speed it up! thats why here's an update of the things i've done -- />
  • removed the random updates bar / the toggle button
  • removed the smart tooltips (the small green box with stuff about what you're pointing to)
  • added 'posted by' text right below the post, so that you can see who posted what at a glance
  • removed technorati search, and statistics scripts -- speed up the page
  • made the toolsbar always show, and added a posts of note section to it at the top (red box)
thats it for the moment, but i'll be experimenting with stuff throughout -- something you guys know i keep on doing

i can see that my guest bloggers really don't put up much stuff at regular intervals. but that's fine, because people obviously have stuff to do other than blog, which has become something like an identity for me. something people know me by! something which i control! MUAHAHAHAHA!


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Wednesday, January 18, 2006
who's woods these are, i think i know...
Posted at 5:54 PM by Aditya

i remember boldly proclaiming that churning out news regarding the gaming front is no mean task ... and i could and would keep people updated on the latest happenings in the games world, try my hand at journalism! but now, at the end of one and a half months, and one article later, i sit here eating my own words ... yeah! im man enough to admit it. churning out articles and headlines is not easy, especially about a dead industry which just refuses to catch up with the worlds!

but then again, me sitting at home staring and clicking away at the myriad web sites and pages regarding games will not have much details and updates about the latest happenings, but i sure would have seen or heard something on television if anything out of the ordinary would have come up. but since it hasn't, the scene can be assumed as dead as before, and so is my incentive to try my hand at gaming journalism! i might try again at a later date when i really don't have anything to do, but for the moment, that's one chapter closed!

speaking of journalism, there's a really good article over at ecmanaut; johan's blog. its about firefox extensions, stability and standardisation. an extract from the post -

I was very long overdue starting fresh with a new firefox profile, my prior one having made my installation very prone to frequent browser crashes, which isn't something you should just accept and live with. Firefox installations, much like Windows installations, have a tendency to rot and degrade with time, especially if you try out software by third party sources (which equals "not from the Mozilla foundation", in the case of firefox and "not from Microsoft", for Windows).
the playstation 3 has been delayed from the spring launch in the US. the wall street says its looking at a november launch, but others are just praying for the quickest release! its really going to set standards, and give the xbox360 enough competition to rock your house! :) [whatever that meant! :P]

nothing more to add, except that as akanksha has told you, she's now a partner-administrator on this blog! means she can regulate all posts, moderate all comments, and make any change she decides to. so watch out people! there's a new boss in town! :D

until next time!

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