Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Kadir Speaks....

Kathiravelu Pradeeban
Deviating from the typical technical blogs is the most attractive
feature of your blog, I would say. It's nice to see you sharing
the thoughts freely on the blog. It's like a one-to-one discussion.
Thanks. I have had a really nice time, like moving through a fresher
planet. I am happy to see more soon, in your collection...tc :)

hey........wow....that was such a wonderful thing to say!! I have to say, it was indeed a pleasant surprise! I keep technical stuff away from my blog. I am not at all about bits & bytes although i wound up with a CS degree by some twist of fate ;)

i have to admit i have a pretty poor collection of blog entries for someone who started blogging way back in 2006. But i am gonna pick that habit up from now onwards.

Thanks Kadir! u should have ideally passed out the complement in the morning ;) at least i would have batted throughout the day with gusto had that been the case!!!

Your blog is like a rainbow, with diverse ideas. I just enjoyed reading it, and would recommend it to my friends for a look.. :)

I hope you won't mind my calling you Kadir! I thought of publishing this little conversation we have had through Facebook in tribute to all those who have read & commented on my blog.

Thanks you guys, for the perfect stimulant & the perfect sweetner

15 Things I Do Best

  • 1) Waste time doing everything else but what must be done.
Yeah...for 26 long years I have been tormented with this great folly of mine. I find it extremely hard to concentrate on something for long enough to get it to a level that is termed as "satisfactory.

  • 2) Getting myself into really awkward situations
Well...I would rather not elaborate on this point. This happens when the pimp inside me starts talking, more often than not. I go, commit something unexplainable in human terms, & sit around moping & musing over it for days.

  • 3) Meeting new people
I believe myself to be a really easy person to make friends with. 15 minutes of conversation & if the second party's visions & ideas are in sync with mine, he or she is bound to get into a relationship they will not soon forget. No bragging! Now that I think about it, I can honestly say I have met the strangest people on earth, in my quest in making friends.

  • 4)Music on the Move
I hate the radio I have in my car!! It is this silly Japanese model (as I have been told) that does not have frequencies above 90MHz. It so happens I love music. And I am so jealous of those who can play musical instruments. Something keeps telling me I am musically gifted. I am yet to find out how.

  • 5) Forgiving & Not Forgetting
There are a few people who have wronged me in this little over 2 decades life of mine. Hmm....some of it self-inflicted actually. I of course believe that the best way to take revenge is by forgiving those who have wronged you. Therefore, if you are somebody who has tried to screw up my life, cast your fears away. You are fogiven! :-)

  • 6) Feeling Inferior
Successful people, make me feel so uncertain of myself. I am never comfortable with such people, and I always end up looking silly & inapt! More often than not I have mistaken this to be jealousy; as in I am jealous of what they have accomplished. Much later in my life I realized that it was not a jealous attack! Just insecurity.

  • 7) Lending my ears
Boy....this I have done countless times & still continue to do so. I am really proud of my pair of ears. Such capacity they have. Such stories they have heard. If only the ears had mouths of their own! Not only that would make me look like a complete freak, but also will have quite a few things to say to me about not adorning them with ear-rings.

  • 8) Coffee
This is to all those who have accompanied me for coffee & also to all those who will be. Gracias!

  • 9) Reading & Writing
Why did I not separate these two? Reading & Writing for me is like Ying & Yang! Each one complements the other & together they produce energy! I love reading & writing...although it took me an inspirational preso done by Samisa Abeysinghe - Director of Engineering WSO2 to start again on blogging after a 2 year layoff period.

  • 10) Cutting Lectures
There is something sinister going on between my conscience & lectures I am taking. There is this little voice inside my head which beckons me to cut the lecture & go off wandering! If not for the 80% attendance threat looming over my head, I would have succumbed to the yearning a long time ago.

  • 11) Falling Sick
For illnesses & diseases my life is a picnic! For so long I have been plagued by many a disease. I am not talking about fevers & colds & headaches! When I get it, the simple cold could turn into a couple of days at the hospital! Hospital food is nice. Only for the first two days though.

  • 12) Sticking to the same wardrobe for an year
Not that I dont like clothes, I just hate shopping. I dont shop unless I see an absolute necessity for a new wardrobe. Usually mother yells & fusses. When her fussing gets too irritating I hit the town & shop till I drop. That usually shuts her up for a good one year.

  • 13) Late night chats
Sumedha... This is for you ;-) . The latest I have chatted with you is until 2.45 am in the morning!

  • 14) Cleaning Toilets
My bathroom is spic & span. And yes I have my own bathroom, which I let no one in! That little room is the cleanest place in the house!

  • 15) Dreaming
My dreams are wild. Very Wild.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Celestial Congestion Control

A Russian satellite & an Iridium communication satellite collided with each other on 10th Feb Tuesday scattering the skies above earth with debris, amount of which is still being counted by scientists.

If every object orbiting the Earth stayed on a simple path, multiple observations of an object would yield precise estimates of its orbit and position. Unexpected glitches - such as accidental releases of fuel - can shift a satellite's orbit.

But so can the drag from Earth's atmosphere, as well as gravitational tugs from the Sun, Moon, and Earth, which is somewhat squashed in shape. The military uses models of these environmental perturbations to help refine its estimates of satellite orbits.

There are 800 to 1,000 active satellites in orbit and about 17,000 pieces of debris and dead satellites, like the Russian one, that can't be controlled. As per scientists it is simply not possible to calculate all collision points of these floating objects, hence the risk of similar events occurring prevails.

Let us consider traffic police in the heavens!

Earth Hour 2009

Millions of campaigners will let their voices be heard on March 20th 2009 at 8.30pm by switching off the lights for one hour to show that it is still possible to take action against global warming & climate change.

Already 377 cities, and double the number of countries that participated in 2008, are committed. WWF expects more to be committed during the coming days.

Visit earthhour.org to see how they have progressed & also to checkout the stuff put on sale to mark the event!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Ever-so Elusive Pride

You work hard for it & yet it can be ripped off of you in a matter of seconds.

Maya Arulpragasam, better known as MIA has done Sri Lanka proud. The Lankan lass became the first Asian to be nominated for the Oscar & the Grammy awards, the most covetous trophies one would give anything to put on display on a shelf at home!

Maya's nomination in the Grammy Award is in the 'Record of the Year' category for her single Paper Planes.

Her Oscar nomination is in the category 'Film Songs' for 'O Saya' in the film 'Slumdog Millionaire' along with A.R. Rahman.

As fabulous as the news sounds, her glory just had to be sullied by some irresponsible statements she had made in public in favor of the LTTE. Read the article published in the Asian Tribune & especially the readers' comments!

Friday, February 6, 2009

My Strange Attraction!

Before Being Sent To The Gallows...

I recently came across this nice article at http://management.about.com/cs/people/a/LayoffAlternate_2.htm, which spoke of a few alternatives a company can take before opting to a lay off in order to cut costs.

In a gist:
  • Job cuts do not save money
McKinley, et al point out in "Organizational downsizing: Constraining, cloning, learning" that "while downsizing has been viewed primarily as a cost reduction strategy, there is considerable evidence that downsizing does not reduce expenses as much as desired, and that sometimes expenses may actually increase. More than thirty years ago, James Lincoln warned that the costs of layoffs generally outweigh the payroll savings to be gained from them."
  • Job cuts reduce performance
In the article Job Cuts Often Fail to Bolster Stocks reports an average performance gain by the companies that had announced job cuts at 0.4% while the performance for the S&P 500 during the comparable time period was a gain was 29.3%.

  • Thinking of employees as a long term capital investment
Many companies fail to realize that they have a tremendous long-term capital investment in their employees. While wages and benefits clearly are an expense item on the budget, they should be thought of more as payments on the capital of employees skill and dedication.

  • Focus more on re-structuring than cutting off people
Often, when job cuts are undertaken in order to pacify the investors, the announcements talk about the cuts as part of a "streamlining" or "restructuring", but they refer only to the people involved. There are other aspects of the company's business that need to be restructured as well. These often include things such as closing of obsolete plants or branches, administrative overhauls, selling of non-core operations, or improving internal processes.

Too Many Faces on Facebook

"It does not hurt to be security conscious" I always tell myself! :)

Popular social networking site Facebook is reported to have been subject to impersonations. Alarmingly the number of reported incidents are on the rise.

Facebook says fewer than 1% of its 150 million users are affected by the scam. In one such case reported from Seattle, unknown to the real owner, his status message was changed to something that read he (the real owner) needed urgent help. Concerned friends turned to his aid, & one friend even went to the extent of wiring him some cash, which was later reported missing!!!

Simple measures such as using a stronger password & using up-to-date browser versions & anti-virus software help immensely in curbing this threat.

One last word...Trust no one! Not even your friends. :)

Phelps...Suspended from Swimming

So they have said, let the punishment fit the crime, but how severe should it really be?
The 08 Beijing Olympics swimming legend Michael Phelps was suspended from swimming for a period of 3 months on charges of being seen smoking from a bong. Further investigations whether he was smoking marijuana is being carried out sources said.

The cause of such severe punishment was probably because Phelps was treated as a role model/hero to many a nations budding young swimmers & kids alike. Undoubtedly such behavior sets a bad example to many who look up to him.

Not only the US swimming authority but also Phelps's sponsor Kellogg, stated that they would not extend the sponsorship period citing his recent misdemeanor.