Monday, December 22, 2008

Mumbai Terror attacks - Part 2

To address the topic of terrorism I am going to ask myself few questions and answer them as well:

Vpd: {laughs} this plan doesn’t seem feasible.
Me: Why not? Currently we have two slow poisons in India: over-excited, hopeless media trying to cover every rat and dog in the streets and small political goons desperate to make an impression on public. I will say Media should find out the most-corrupted politicians and political goons should beat them up (instead of beating poor non-localities). It can’t get any simpler than this.

Vpd: Interesting!
Me: The corruption has gone so deep that it is not going to be resolved by kicking politicians out of the power. Politicians end up making more illegal money when not in power as compared to when in power. Not being under the national radar helps them to churn out more illegal money. They want to be in power at least once in a lifetime so that they can boast for the rest of their lives. And my suggestion is to deprive them of their whole illusion. Let’s publicly beat and insult few corrupted ones and you will see the others straightening up pretty soon.

Vpd: Sir, your ideas and suggestions are pretty harsh and not diplomatic at all.
Me: I have realized that changes need to happen at the grass-root level. And diplomacy will never succeed at grass-root level, well at least not in India with the poor quotient of literacy. Strict actions are necessary to bring change in the system. Have you seen our current politicians and their education level? We should take some drastic steps to get country’s so-called leaders in line.

Vpd: What are your thoughts about our PM?
Me: He is a smart guy but not a good leader. As we all know he became PM by accident. I believe he is learning those leadership skills now but meanwhile the whole country will suffer.

Vpd: What do you think of our new home minister, Chidambaram?
Me: Another smart guy taking up a position where he doesn’t belong. This shows how India has a scarcity of good politicians and ruling party has to shuffle the cabinet profiles among the few chosen ones.

Vpd: What you think about most of the film industry being reluctant to comment on these attacks?
Me: This is the perfect example of my previous comment of media being overly-excited and hopeless. When did film stars become our defense experts or ambassadors? And why should Indian public care about film stars’ opinion anyways? Movie stars are entertainers and nothing more than that. Its time media realized that and helped improve our people’s outlook toward governance. Media should direct their energy questioning current and previous security advisors instead of trying to figure out why there were no prominent movie stars in Taj on night of the tragedy.

Vpd: Why did you decide to come off so late with your comments?
Me: I wanted to understand the whole situation before forming an opinion. Also I wanted to see what decisions government will take regarding the attacks. It seems they have disappointed people again, and you might be looking at a similar after-math of 1992 Mumbai bomb blasts: a panel will be appointed and the court case will go for almost 10-12 years or until people have forgotten about it. They will pat each other after the case is closed and people will have no choice but to be satisfied about the whole affair. Time has come for people to show that they will not tolerate any more incompetency and might revolt, if necessary.

Mumbai Terror attacks - Part 1

To address the topic of terrorism I am going to ask myself few questions and answer them as well:

Vpd: Thank you Sir for coming on our talk show. Let’s start with first Q&A: How do you feel about recent terrorist attacks on Mumbai?
Me: I condemn the attacks. This is all what politicians currently say, isn’t it? No matter where and who you are, all you need to say is ‘condemn’ and it will make things right. Condemn basically means “I didn’t like what happened but I am not going to do anything about it”.

Vpd: I sense anger in you for politicians?
Me: Well of course, come to think of it, if I can get this angry by staying in US how people in India and especially in Mumbai might be feeling about it right now?

Vpd: But why politicians?
Me: Because we pay them for keeping our country secure and most of them don’t seem to have an idea of what they are doing. First of all, Chief Minister of Maharashtra created an embarrassing situation by showing his reluctance to resign from his post. Instead of addressing the issue he started attacking opposition by digging out the examples of when they didn’t resign for terrorist attacks during their power. To make the pain worse, he showed up with his actor son and his director friend for an official visit to all terrorized places. This just shows how serious he is about the whole situation.

Vpd: Sir, you should understand that for every terrorized attack, Indian police and politicians are responsible for stopping other 10 attacks from happening. But people don’t seem to appreciate that, do you think this anger is justified?
Me: Yes, it is justified because we don’t seem to take failed terror attempts seriously. Every failed terror attempt should be taken as seriously as an actual successful terror attack. The very idea of some groups trying to kill people from your country should alert the government, instead it takes 20-25 failed attempts and 6-8 successful terror attacks to get government’s attention. This is very very sad.

Vpd: Good point, what do you think we should do?
Me: Let me start with what people usually do. Most of the religious and spiritual people end up conversing about existence of GOD in today’s difficult times. And few activists will mourn for the dead by lighting candles and rally for their cause for few months before they find a new one. These activists sometimes will even go a step further asking all citizens to be responsible citizens and improve their civic habits. Their favorite lines are “what have you done for your country lately”, “Why blame others instead blame yourself”.
My stand is why people should feel guilty and depressed every time a terror attack takes place. Don’t we appoint politicians for this work? I would like to see people beating up few corrupted politicians on the streets for a start. This should alert the political parties and scare them off with the possibility of another revolution.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

What's ma writing style?

Following the footsteps of my fellow bloggers, I entered my blogsite name on Typealyzer and here is what it has to say about me:

"ESTP - The Doers

The active and play-ful type. They are especially attuned to people and things around them and often full of energy, talking, joking and engaging in physical out-door activities.

The Doers are happiest with action-filled work which craves their full attention and focus. They might be very impulsive and more keen on starting something new than following it through. They might have a problem with sitting still or remaining inactive for any period of time."

Couple of things that one would notice:

1) Results are consistent i.e it will give the same result for the same blogsite if entered multiple times.
2) It is impressively fast which makes me wonder whether popular blog sites (e.g. blospot)are being pre-screened
3) Their note at the beginning that says "writing style on a blog may have little or nothing to do with a person´s self-percieved personality".

Whatever was it worth, the results made me happy :-)!!!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Something to ponder!!

Life is like a freeway. Some people are born rich (they drive Porsche) and most of the others are not that lucky. Some have their own goals (destinations) to reach while others don’t believe in goals (driving for fun and for good scenic views). Some like to move faster in life (drive in fast lane) while others play it safe. Given the situation (weather, time) people tend to change pace in their lives (change lanes, they either move from slower to faster lane or vice versa). Without proper precaution people face difficulties in their lives (accidents) and sometimes people get lucky and miss those tough times even after committing few grievous mistakes. When someone gets crazy in life, he bears the brunt of his actions (ticketed by Cop) and thus life – freeway anomaly goes on.

So here is the question, what is the definition of a good driver (success in life)? One who is adamant and drives in the fast lane all the time and reaches his destination earlier / one who adapts to current traffic by changing lanes / one who doesn’t care about traffic, drive in his own way and enjoys the drive?

History will prove us that we, as a society, have admired people (drivers) from each of the above categories. Think of all big names in the world (present and past) and you will find people of all categories. So there is no single answer.

What type of a driver are you?

Monday, November 10, 2008

My second baby

Do you have a kid whom you would like to gift a game that is educational and enriching at the same time? The game that runs on PC and hones building and puzzle-solving skills.
You don’t have to look anywhere else, MySims on PC is just the game for you.

Here are the details:

Reason why I am acting as a salesman: I am one of the developers for this game:-) . My second shipped game whoo-woo!!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Short story: Self-praise is a virtue

Tracy: Hello Dad!

Dad: Hi honey! You never called me this early in the morning. Is everything OK?

Tracy: Dad, I am planning to quit my job today. I don’t think I am cut-out for this job. I cannot be an exit interviewer anymore. Employees bring everything that I hate about human nature: frustration, depression, jealousy, arrogance, greed and selfishness.

Dad: I should tell you something that I never told you before- You are much stronger than you credit yourself for. But if you don’t enjoy your work then I am not going to push you.

Tracy {Surprised}: Thanks Dad.

[Tracy enters into her manager Ram’s room.]
Tracy: Ram, I need to talk to you now.

Ram: I am quite busy now. Schedule a meeting for today evening and we can talk then.

[Tracy returns to her cube to find her HR coordinator Hannah waiting.]
Hannah: Where have you been? It seems another employee of our client ‘Creative Solutions Ltd’ is quitting the company and you are been assigned to take her exit interview.

Tracy {with a heavy sigh}: Ok.

Tracy {to herself}: I swear to God, this is my last exit interview. I am not even going to read her profile; I will just call her and finish the interview in less than 15 minutes.

Tracy: Hello Julia, I am sorry to hear that you are quitting ‘Creative Solutions Ltd’. Can I ask you which company are you joining?

Julia: I am not going to work for a while. I am tired of my job and cannot take it anymore.

Tracy {disinterested}: Right, is there anything ‘Creative Solutions Ltd’ can do to retain you?

Julia: Not actually, company, pay and employees are great. It’s just that my job sucks. It tells me everything that is wrong with this world. I like to enjoy every moment of my life. However since I joined this job my passion for life is dying day by day.

Tracy {Surprised}: What exactly you do?

Julia: I take ‘exit interviews’ for employees. Since they couldn’t get anyone to take my exit interview, the company finally requested for your company’s services.
Tracy {smiling}: Thanks Julia for your time. I wish you a great life ahead.

[Evening in meeting room]
Ram: Tracy, I have some good news for you. We have decided to promote you. Chris is leaving and you would be the new Team Lead. So what you wanted to talk to me in the morning.

Tracy: Thanks Ram, this is really mind-blowing. Huh, I was planning to take a week off.

Ram: Good, enjoy your afternoons and come back next Monday with a fresh mind and a new spirit.

Tracy staring in mirror: You are much stronger than you credit yourself for.
Tracy’s reflection in mirror smiles.

Total words= 463 + 4(title)

Monday, September 08, 2008

New phase in life

It feels nice to find someone whom you can irritate for the rest of your life. I found someone for the very same reason. I got engaged to Arati Jalikop :-). Here are few snaps:

Engagement Pics

Warning: the pics are a bit traditional !!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Postcard story: Happy Birthday, Johnny!!!

Anne (Secretary): Good Morning Peter, executives are waiting for you in the main conference room. Give us the good news by noon.

Peter: {laughs} Anne, you know it better than me that acquisition doesn’t happen in a single meeting. They take months and sometimes even years.

Peter enters in the meeting room.

Peter: Good morning all, hope I didn’t make you wait that long. I am the CEO of Creative Solutions Ltd and this guy is Tom who has been working hard to make this merger a success.

Steve: I am Steve, CEO of Quick Fix Inc. And this is not a merger; you are forcefully trying to acquire our company.

Peter: {laughs} fair enough. But let me tell you one thing that after this deal we would be a number one company in the whole world.

Steve: Not us, just you. And I don’t see this deal getting finalized with the current terms and conditions. We are been undervalued and post-deal benefits don’t seem to be impressive at all.

Peter: Only market and time will tell whether this deal is a raw one. But as of now we own the market and the current time is ours. I will promise you only one thing and that is nobody would be laid off. I will see to it personally that your company is treated as our extended family. That reminds me, I have to leave now for a birthday party of one of my family members.

Tom {whispers}: Peter, we need to attend this issue right now. I busted my ass for almost a year to get everyone in one room. You cannot leave now.

Peter {loudly}: Sorry Tom, family comes first. Steve, Tom will handle all the details from here. If this deal doesn’t materialize today then I promise you that I will never ever try to cross your path again.

Steve and other executives watch Peter leave with angry faces.

[Couple of hours later]

Tom: Peter, this is huge. Listen to this, Steve signed the papers. He said- I like a CEO who takes care of his family. Whose birthday is today, by the way?

Peter: Thanks Tom, talk to you later.

A little girl: Daddy, I didn’t know you loved our dog this much. Thanks for bringing Birthday cake for Johnny.

Peter: Anything for you sweetie. Now go, hug Johnny and smile….


Words= 396 + 3 (title)

Sunday, August 10, 2008

World's take on India's Olympic spirit

This is what commentators have to say when Indian team was walking down the aisle during the opening ceremony of Beijing 2008:

Commentator1: "India is just behind China as world's second populous country. They have more than a billion people. Unlike Chinese, they don't really have a sports infrastructure. Since 1984 which marked the mainland China's entry to Olympic competition they have won 286 medals and during that time India, with a comprehensive population, has won 3 in all. "

Commentator2: "In few minutes you will see China marching with their several hundred athletes as compared to 56 from India."

No Comments....

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Postcard story

While growing up you are amazed by few events or principles or people that they stick in your head forever. One such principle for me has been the concept of 'slow is good' in a learning process. Let me give you an example - if you want to learn riding a bicycle it is advised that riding it as slow as possible is a good approach. Riding faster is easier and doesn't teach you the power of control much. This was and is still fascinating for me.

Similar concept applies for writing as well i.e. writing less is good as it gives you more control over your words and ideas. The phrase popularized by Mark Twain pretty much summarizes my thought in this regard: "If I had more time, I would have written less". This thought is so true, it is easy to write a 2 page article to explain an idea as compared to writing a 2 line sentence to explain the same. With this spirit in mind I have to decided to diverge my energy in a writing a postcard story. Postcard story is a short short story that comprises of 250-300 words.

Here is a classic postcard story written by Arthur Clarke, named Quarantine:

Earth's flaming debris still filled half the sky when the question filtered up to Central from the Curiosity Generator.

"Why was it necessary? Even though they were organic, they had reached Third Order Intelligence."

"We had no choice: five earlier units became hopelessly infected, when they made contact."

"Infected? How?"

The microseconds dragged slowly by, while Central tracked down the few fading memories that had leaked past the Censor Gate, when the heavily-buffered Reconnaissance Circuits had been ordered to self-destruct.

"They encountered a - problem - that could not be fully analyzed within the lifetime of the Universe. Though it involved only six operators, they became totally obsessed by it."

"How is that possible?"

"We do not know: we must never know. But if those six operators are ever re-discovered, all rational computing will end."

"How can they be recognized?"

"That also we do not know; only the names leaked through before the Censor Gate closed. Of course, they mean nothing."

"Nevertheless, I must have them."

The Censor voltage started to rise; but it did not trigger the Gate.

"Here they are: King, Queen, Bishop, Knight, Rook, Pawn."

Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, First Issue, Vol 1, No. 1, Spring 1977

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Do you yahooooooooo!!

Ok, being a techie and a blogger, blogging about yahoo and their current situation at some point of time was inevitable. Before I say anything else I should mention that Yahoo email and IM are my primary source of communication to the outside world till current date and time. There are couple of reasons for that: I got my first PC in 1999 when Yahoo was slowly getting popular in India. Along with hotmail and rediffmail, I decided to make Yahoo part of my life and hola, it has been a successful relationship so far. Partly because most of my friends and other contacts are on Yahoo and I have a few good groups formed over time in Yahoo world.

So what is the current deal with Yahoo. As an outsider it is difficult to tell the truth but it is so tempting to say Yahoo is losing its touch. I am not sure about their business and product plans for next few years, but I am pretty sure that many significant leaders in Yahoo world had quit the company. This link would shout evidence for that fact: Yahoo leaders bid goodbye.

Remember when your parents said ‘you are as good as the company that you keep’, it is also true in the business world ‘the company is as good as the people it keeps’. So after looking at VIPs leave Yahoo, their stock crashing over few months and regular song’n’dance with Microsoft, one needs to be quite an optimistic to believe in Yahoo today.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Sarkar Raj

[Warning: It’s a spoiler, so don’t read this blog if you are going to watch the movie]

Being a big fan of crime movies that are directed by RGV, I was a bit disappointed with Sarkar Raj. It seems that RGV, in a desperate attempt to break his series of flops, decided to overuse his strengths. The background music that was known for its best timing found itself all over the places in this movie. The storyline, which has been one of the main strengths of RGV’s crime movies, was a bit disturbing to my taste. My biggest complaint to RGV for this movie is ‘Why do you have to kill Abhishek? If you were that desperate to surprise the audience then you would have killed AB. People would have loved that, I know I would”. If there is another Sarkar movie in subsequent years starring AB, then I guess I would have to pass. The way Sarkar Raj ended it seems like RGV is planning to bring a new face as AB’s grandson who will take over the family business. But for now, Sarkar Raj is an above average movie which got a good opening (thanks to huge starcast) but will fall short of ‘word of mouth’ publicity.

Sarkar Raj: 3 / 5

Monday, June 09, 2008

Arrested Development

AD is a television comedy series that showcases a classic case of self-centered materialistic family (Bluth) where each member cares only for himself. However this is not true for 2nd son (Michael Bluth) of the family who selflessly tries to save the family from every ridiculous problem they land into on a daily basis. The series is a bold take on materialistic nature of a human being , who if raised in a rich family can deter using his logical sense. It took me a while to digest the crude nature of comic take on wordly day-to-day happenings, but now I am addicted to the show. I ended up watching all 3 seasons of AD on I should warn you that this is not your regular sit-com show. You need to be a part of western culture to get most of the jokes from AD.

My review: 3.5 / 5.0

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Life of Pi

For starters, ‘Life of Pi’ is a book that won Man Booker prize in 2002. It grabbed a lot of attention in India for mainly two reasons: the book’s protagonist is an Indian and the story is about survival which Indians quite easily relate to. The protagonist Pi is a devout and follows all religions that are prominent in India viz., Hinduism, Islam, Christanity. The story mainly deals with his survival on a lifeboat along with a Bengal tiger for some 270 days. Being a son of Zoo manager, he explains some interesting facts about Zoo, animals and how to tame them.

The book is a good fictional read, but I couldn’t actually connect to the character and his survival story. The writing is just above average and Yann Martel didn’t impress me as an expert writer of make-believe stories. The story is a good change from other fictional stories that we get to read from our mainstream writers. However reader should not consider Pi as a stereotype Indian, Pi is young, naïve and over-zealous follower of religion. The part that I hate about the books with Indian protagonists is that they take the characters over the roof and end up showcasing them as naïve. And sadly that seems to grab the attention of western world and the books end up winning prizes across the globe.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Assassin’s Creed

AC is really good but only for first 3-4 hours. Then it becomes repetitive to a point that I decided to give up playing. My rating for the game is 6.5 / 10. It is an impressive stealth game though. Best part of the game is:

a) You can climb anything in AC. You feel this immense power of a super-hero, who can climb everything he lays his hands on.
b) Simulation of people wandering in town, that makes the town real
c) Experience of cities like Damascus, Jerusalem is very hard to resist
d) Riding horses, collecting flags, rescuing citizens are good gameplay features but are short-lived

Assassins however are not creative and make player follow the same protocol over and over again. This is a best game to borrow and try your hands on rather than buying yourself.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Alfred Hitchcock

“You cannot call yourself a movie buff without watching Hitchcock’s work”, this is what I realised in last 40 days. Hitchcock movie festival in Stanford theatre was an enriching experience especially since I watched movies in a theatre that had 70’s style interior. I ended up watching Rebecca, The foreign correspondent, North by Northwest, The Birds and Pyscho. I was bowled over by Rebecca and Psycho. The part that amazed me was the screenplay. You will notice Hitchock slowing down pace of the movie by showing his characters doing some useless chores like Rebacca cleaning up the house, Norman bates cleaning up the dead body. There are lots of mundane details which you would think that they can be skipped, and then suddenly you will see a twist in the movie that will leave you short of breath. Keeping in mind that these movies were made in 60’s and 70’s, I completely agree with critics that Alfred had set a standard which very few moviemakers can match.

Thursday, April 10, 2008


I want to be a cricketer, I want to be a quarterback, I want to be a lead guitrist in a rock band, I want to be a vocalist, I want to be a drummer, I want to be a moviestar, I want to be a director, I want to be a politician, I want to be social worker, I want to be creative director, I want to be a CEO, I want to be a producer, I want to be artist, I want to be a designer, I want to remain an engineer, I want to be an adman, I want to be a best-seller author, I want to be a cartoonist, I want to ride a fighter plane, I want to ride a submarine, I want to fly in a space shuttle, I want to be filthy rich, I want to be a homeless, I want to be passionate in life, I want to give up everything and lead a life of a yogi, I want to dream, I want , I……

Thursday, February 28, 2008


Yep, this is another game review, review for Call of Duty 4. Having never played first 3 sequels of the franchise, I was impressed by the 4th one. It’s a very polished game which one might expect when a game comes out with its 4th edition. The big change with the 4th edition is that it involves around modern warfare as compared to the previous ones which involved around WW2. I liked gameplay the most where player is bombing the enemy territory while sitting in a helicopter, not that I complain about blowing the tanks and enemy choppers from the ground. My friend mentioned me that Chernobyl (Russia) in the game is the exact replica of the real city which is quite mind blowing. The ending of the game beats a Hollywood climax by leaps and bounds. I would recommend this game as a ‘must play’ for first person shooters out there.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Movie scripts

Currently got into an unusual habit of reading movie scripts. After reading significant number of fictional novels and short stories, I realized that I am interested only in story-telling part of the whole writing. So I shifted to reading movie scripts and so far it has been a pleasing experience. The movie scripts that I have read so far are Meet Joe Black, Matrix, Amadeus, Annie Hall, Hannah. All of these scripts have won accolades in different film festivals. Movie script reading is interesting because there is no background explanation for either a place or a character. One has to define a character by his behavior and interactions; one has to give a quick overview of how location is by its effect on the characters residing there. The whole writing is usually precise and very direct.

I strongly believe that films should always be well-scripted. Once you read a script and watch the movie based on it, you realize how worthy was the director of that movie. Film making is all about doing right justice to the given script. If you are interested in trying out new things in your life then you should give a try to reading movie scripts. And if you happen to know some really good scripts then please list them in comments section, Thanks.

Saturday, January 26, 2008


Yeah, I know, I am getting addicted to the games. But in my defense the games released in last 6 months have been awesome and truly stand to the definition of next-generation. Take Portal for example, Portal is different than other games in so many ways. It’s a puzzle game and you have to solve the puzzles by creating 2 portals, one for the entry and other for the exit. Well, each portal can be used as an entry / exit portal. It’s a short game, fun and enriching in many ways. The last level of the portal has a better climax than most of the current movies. I would recommend everybody to play this game as it is quite a learning experience. My rating for this game is 8 / 10.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Battlestar Galatica

I am completely blown by the series Battlestart Galatica a.k.a BG. It is a sci-fi television show with a really well-developed idea of human race fighting against Cylons (which are machines created by humans) and trying to reach a planet called Earth before they run out of their limited resources. Well, one might say many sci-fi movies and television series try to sell the same idea to us in different versions i.e. humans fighting against the machines, the machines that humans created at the first place. But BG is different, different in many ways. It draws parallels with current US-Iraq politic situation, questions the importance of religion in our lives and other factors like love which only humans experience.

I would recommend everybody to watch the show as it sets high standards of production quality, story narration, characterization and execution of well-written idea into a convincing and inspiring show. The other thing that took me by surprise was that the original BG was aired in 1978 which means US television was airing really good quality thought-provoking shows in 1970s whereas other countries were still trying to come up with a process of producing television shows.


is definitely the best game of the year 2007. No matter whether you are a beginner, mid-level or an expert gamer this game is for everybody. I would rate it 9 / 10, hoping that someone would make a better game in the future to match my 10-point scale. Here are the highlights of the game:

- The storyline and setup of the ‘city under water’ are impressive
- The set of powers that player can exercise is creative e.g. telekinetic power
- Levels and npc characters are interesting to play and interact respectively
- Tasks assigned to player are fun, for e.g. kill a guy, take his snap with a camera and put the taken picture in a frame to finish the incomplete art work
- Graphics are no doubtable matching the next-gen standards
- Overall, the great world filled with lots of interactive objects is too addictive to give up playing

Wednesday, January 02, 2008


Happy New Year to everybody!!!

On the occasion of new year, I decided to give my blogsite a complete makeover. Hope this layout and year brings freshness to me and my readers. (Alarm: lame lame, yeah yeah I know, but its new year, what the hell!!!)