Thursday, March 27, 2008

Apple and Orange - Talks on the life after

This is what happens when Apple who has too much time to listen gets caught by Orange who has too much time to think.
If you are wondering whether I=Apple or I=Orange, then you are asking the wrong question.

Just enjoy the conversation.

Apple: hmmm... how long is the contract?
Orange: keeps on extending
Apple: nice na ;)
Orange: boring
Apple: come on paal.. this ist he time to earn...
Orange: when else is it not
Apple: earn all while u can... and play wen be it..
Orange: oh
Apple: after marriage ;)) tht wen
Orange: its horrifying
did I tell you of my cousin
Apple: nope.. wat happened?
Orange: I was driving the car with him and he started talking about marriage plans
.... for ME
Apple: ;)
lucky u.. ;P
Orange: though i expected this when-is-your-marriage talks
he went on to talk planning on when you would come to India and when can we see the alliances
all those crap
had big time avoiding those talks
Apple: Come on da... its good na..
Orange: and scariest thing was, my cousin though my age would act matured all the time
as if he is some 40 year old
all philosohpy and talks
Apple: haaaaaaaaaaaaa... ;)
and wat was ur 40 yr old cousin's advice to U?
Orange: and it scared everything out of me as how people change after marriage
their whole life is around house, cooking, kids and calls with parents
Apple: u'd have to da... beliv me.. i have seen many instances..
Orange: nothing else
and they were about with their kid 24 hrs
scary man!
i was on a vacation on a very beautifulplace and they dont feel like enjoying that
Apple: haaaaaaaa... :)) well there are always something scary and theres always the good part too man
u get Ur better half...
Orange: the term of happiness changed for them
i felt completely left out
damn crazy
Apple: it happens... and wat did u thnk thn?? u wanted some company??!!!
Orange: NO
Apple: dont tell me u too wanted some frinds?
Orange: i wanted to enjoy life
be free
Apple: enjoy life???!!! how long pal..??
Orange: not bad having girl friend
or marry someone who wants to be free like you
seeing around is scaring
and to add to that, i saw few of married colleagues here
too bad man
too bad
they live very cautiously
everything is in closed circles
Apple: cautious eh.... cool term.
Orange: they think twice before spending 5 bucks
thrice before planning to travel somewhere
Apple: yes.. thts one thng about familly.. U learn to thnk for everybody.. ;)
Orange: too bad
you cant think for yourself
i doing now
troubling my life for others
and is that going to continue after marriage too????
so where is our own life????
long lost while searching for it?
Apple: well we don't own a life paaal... we learn for other, work for others....
Orange: and what about others
Apple: first parents, thn wife, thn children..
Orange: do they learn for us
work for us?
Apple: yes... thts exactly the circle of Life..
Ur kids wud..
Orange: damn
now i need a kid to live my life?
Apple: just like Ur parents.. never enjoyed a penny for thmselves..
Orange: too bad man
Apple: this life which U me are living rt now is far far more better than wat used to be there wen our father or grandfathers had.
Orange: so why dont we keep it better
just fall down
why fall down
Apple: thy had to look after their parenz, children and the huge family..........
Orange: i know how that is
Apple: as along maybe thng wud get boiled down eventually ;)) in another 2 or 3 centuries ;))
Orange: thats a promising time
Apple: Welll maybe the care, the love and things tht was shared between the concept of FAMILY in earlier times is too far fetched nowadays..
or deteriorating considerably......
joined becom,ing nuclear... and so on and so forth..
maybe we are adopting or tryingto adopt the east...
Orange: may be troubles, envy, gossip also got shared between the concept
Apple: trubles, envy and gossips.. hmmm.. to thnk of it.. u thnk ppl have time for all these nowadasy?
thy have thngs to do for themselves.. tht keeps thm busy... y wud thy care for someones business?
Orange: if no one has time, why do we bother about it anyway?
Apple: aha... there you go.. its not time tht we bother about here.. its about ourselves tht we are bothered about..
Orange: really?
Apple: maybe man has become /eveloved to be much too self centric
Orange: think again
may be not
may be he presumes too much
no time to know
so he just presumes
Apple: presumes... wat?
Orange: and deducts his actions from that
he presumes everything around him
Apple: well u mean thy are becoming ignorant?
Orange: without knowing what and how it really is going to be
they are not ready to learn as they think they are know-it-all
Apple: haaaaaaaaaaaaaa... exactly.. tht too is a valid notion, if u ask me.. ;)

*The conversation is posted only after getting approval from both Apple and Orange.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Horton hears a Who!

Let's be honest. Its MIB with an elephant. Or should I say, EIB. But that doesnt make sense either as elephants are always black. So it is just Mr.H (Horton) saving the people of Whosville living on a speck. Ok, I might be simplifying things here. There is also a Kangaroo ruling the wild who preaches "If you can't see or hear or feel, then it doesn't exist". Sometimes, I feel it is questioning God. And a mouse who is the best friend to our elephant hero. And of course, the Mayor of Whosville has 96 daughters and 1 son and is having big trouble convincing the council that he is not as stupid as he appears though he is voiced by "The Office" fame Steve Carell. There is more to the jungle and the fun is always high when Horton hears a Who, a citizen of Whosville living on a speck which I have told already. There is nothing more to say about the story. As it is based on a children's bed time story book, it also carries a moral at the end in Dr. Seuss's own intelligent way.
Now lets talk about the movie's from the non-story perspective. Considering the graphics and animation style, it was kept as simple as possible with colors reminding of the children's book itself. It is always smooth and attractive to children. But the greatest achievement of the animation in the film is Horton. It is highly creative to animate an elephant which expect for the trunk cannot hold anything. But they have made it better in bringing the elephant not only handsome but very funny in its appearance and acting. It looks more alive in its performance. Some appreciation must go to Jim Carrey for voicing Horton.
As a whole, this movie may not be a classic like "Finding Nemo" or "Happy Feet", but it has its own style and stands out cool.
As Horton repeatedly speaks, "A person is still a person, no matter how small."

Friday, March 21, 2008


Never doubt what you can,
Never question what you feel,
Never hesitate what you believe.

Monday, March 17, 2008

August Rush - A magnificent Rhapsody

I had seen lots of movies from musical category before. But none had touched my heart this close. I can hear it even after the movie has ended. It stays inside and resonates your feelings. One should listen rather than watching the movie and it is to be perceived as a fantasy story to really understand the music and connection it creates between people. If you have ever felt that a tune can reach one's heart, you will believe this musical harmony. Though one might argue, that the story is a very predictable and sentimental, and not to forget that the story has been repeated in many of our old Kollywood movies, this musical makes you believe the same instead of what you had laughed at in other movies. The cast has done their work perfectly. As I am not a musician to the least, I am unable to comment on how much the actors have perfectly portrayed the performance of playing the instruments. But you can easily agree with their expressions that they are playing from their heart. Keri Russell with the violoncello, the soft rock songs by Jonathan Rhys Myers and unbelievably gratifying Guitar performance by Freddie Highmore makes you stimulated at times.

If you have not noticed, Freddie is the kid who plays as Peter in "Finding Neverland" and as Charlie in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory". Amazing performance again.

Honorable mention to the movie is Robin Williams as "The Wizard" whose character I find could have been made better in a good will manner.

And if you want to see this movie, never try from the low quality online prints and even movie theatres might not provide the best effect. My advice is to watch it from a Original DVD in a silent environment with a good quality headphones. I watched with my Bose earphones and I find it worth for every penny I invested on it.

And so as the boy says, "The music is all around us. All you have to do is listen."

Friday, March 14, 2008

In this Weird World - Emptiness

Isn't it weird.....
You feel the emptiness inside you
when you got everything around you.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

The Twice Folded Letter - Unfolded

Read here for the folded part of the story.....

We all remained silent during the entire return journey. Our company had arranged for cabs and three of us shared one as our house was on the way to hers. Actually, I was little excited and nervous when she asked if she can share our cab. But I think she did not expect him to accompany us for she looked little disappointed when she saw him already seating on one end of the car. So the entire trip was very calm with her looking at the streets all the time while he was trying to call someone, but it appeared no one was picking on the other end. He looked really worried about not able to reach them, though I was wondering when he charged the mobile as it was down from the evening. I also would have tried to make some fake-important calls, but was restricted as I kept the mobile in the pant pocket and felt difficult to take it without disturbing the both of them. So I resorted to watch my watch ticking every second. Funny it was that it took exactly 60 seconds to count 60 seconds. After a long time of following the minutes and seconds dials, the cab came to a stop infront of our house and we got down and she waved us a whispering Good-bye.
"How could you do that?" he screamed once the cab started. Even the cab driver got scared and braked hard. Finally, we entered the home without any further talks. Then it started again.
"How could you do this to me?" he continued. "I thought you were helping me."
I did not know how to reply to him. So I went to arrange the bed to sleep without hearing anything. "I trusted you a lot. This is how you repay?" he pulled the blanket away. I ignored him and tried to place the pillow on the exact top center of the bed as if it mattered. "Are you listening to what I am saying?" he threw the pillow away to the corner. I walked to the corner and took the pillow wondering if he got the answer as "No". Though I wanted to answer each and every one of his question, I tried hard not to create any emotional scene. "Thank God, she didn't reply anything to you?" he sighed with relief. A wave of shock passed over me. "What do you mean she didn't reply?" I talked for the first time. "She gave me the letter, if you didn't notice?" I remarked.
"Yeah! So?"
"So, it means she replied back, you dumbo"
"Yeah! But it is not like she said I love you"
I was getting irritated now. Either he is not able to accept what happened or he is entirely stupid.
"Are you stupid? She gave me the letter. Which part of my words did you not understand? Anyway, why do you bother? It is not like you love her." I shouted back at him.
"How are you so sure of that?" he barked.
"May be because you told me so tonight. I waited for you to speak all this time and I was unable to express anything because I thought you loved her. Now I knew that she is just a Rolex watch in the showroom to you, I realized that I have to tell her."
"Yeah! Did you think how hard it will be to see someone taking away the Rolex you were looking all the time?"
"What are you? A stupid loaf? Did YOU not hear what I said? I love her unlike you. And SHE LOVES ME."
He became silent then. The sound exchanges between us like this had happened before though nothing serious like today and it created an uneasy feeling. I thought I owe him an apology but did not know how he would take it.
"Did you read the letter?" he asked anxiously.
"No. Why?" I completely forgot about reading the letter. All these unexpected events were difficult to cope at the same time that I did not have the courage to read her letter and saved it for later.
"May be it is not a love letter." he said casually and looked at me as if I am expected to agree with him. I could not believe his words. The patience and all the temper I had inside me burned out but I did not know if letting out my fury will help me in any way. I just stood there clutching my fist wondering if beating myself would be a better way to react.
"I am just thinking... it could be just New Year wishes." he said.
I turned back and went to the balcony trying to avoid him while he continued with his improbable opinions. "... or it might be for someone else".
Why would he think in such a bad way? I thought to myself knowing there is no point of getting angry on him. May be he is just reacting for my actions tonight. Suddenly a small spot of doubt appeared on my mind. Could he really be right? This letter might not be a love letter. She never spoke the words.
The spot of doubt darkened in my mind. I inserted my hands into the pant pocket decided to read the letter. When I couldn’t find in the pocket on the right side, I tried the one in the left. It was not there. I checked the shirt. It was not there too. A sudden panic raised inside me. I ran inside and checked the tables and my book shelf which I had not touched after returning to home. While I was searching around all the books, he inserted his hand in-between and took away a book silently. I turned to him while he walked away never bothered about anything. A doubt crept into my mind suddenly. Could it be possible that he hid the letter? It seemed reasonable. And all his questions about the letter moved the favor against him. But it would be very bad to assume beforehand. I was getting confused and checked my pockets again. Nothing was there. With hard heart not knowing how he would react, I called his name and he looked back from his book upside down in his hand silently. But before I could ask anything, my phone rang. Realizing it is her, I took the call
"Hi" I just said and looked at him staring at me.
"Hi" She replied.
I just waited. "Hi" I repeated.
There was a pause. Then she said "So you read the letter?"
I wondered what to say. He looked away and sat on the couch trying to read the book upside down.
"Yeah! I read it. Thanks" I said. Thanks???? What was I talking?
Another pause. "So you reached safely?" I asked.
"Yeah!" she said "Ok. I just wanted to say Good night. Bye" and disconnected the call.
I kept the phone on the table and looked back at him. He was still pretending to read. I know I had to ask him for the letter.
"I am sorry dude" he said still looking at the book. "I shouldn't have told like that. I just did not know how to react." He was calm and talked without any expression. "I did not expect this. But I am very happy for you. You should really know that." I remained silent. "The call. That was she. Isn’t it?" he asked. "Yes" I felt sorry for him. "So did you read the letter? Was it something else?" he asked slowly raising his head. I hit my forehead with the fist. Some people will never change. My mobile beeped. It was a message from her.
"if u rd th ltr, tel me th last sen10c"
I thought for a while. What could be the most probable sentence at the end of the first love letter? Not having much experience in that, I was able to think only of "Yours faithfully".
"ur name, of course" i replied.
Few seconds passed at which I laughed to myself.
Then came the shattering reply. "too smart. i kno u dnot rd th ltr. YOU DROPPED IT IN BUS"
My fist hit my forehead again.
"She said it. didn't she?" he was eager to hear the story.
I laughed at him and called her back.
"I am really sorry I left it in bus. Please tell me what the letter said? I am ...." she disconnected the call before I could finish.
"You lost her first love letter????" he screamed.
"Atleast you agree that’s a love letter now" I smirked and I got my answer back from her.
A message popped in my mobile.
"... sweeter than Honey! I Love You."

Monday, March 10, 2008

Anonymous comments

I know that you know
I know you. But do you know
that I dont want you
to know that I know.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Click WWW for Everything, Almost

When I was planning for the SFO tour, I made all the arrangements from booking flight tickets to hotel room reservations online. There was no need to call or visit anywhere prior to the travel. Even when my uncle wanted to buy fruit at 11 'o' clock in the night, I was able to locate a fruit store nearer to my hotel with directions. So the life is simplified and eased to the comfort of any simple man by the Global Internet. It may not appear ludicrous now to say News travel faster than sound with the help of Internet. The once large strange world is brought to our reach just by a few clicks.

So I can easily say that 'almost' everything can be achieved with Internet. I say 'Almost' because, my recent experience with opening a bank account with Citibank through online became a waste of time as it still needed the help of snail mail service or fax for a signature and address proof. In the world of digital security, the need for a hand written signature as an identity confirmation created a confused impression for me. Also though we say Internet has brought the world as Global Village, it appears that the WorldWideWeb is allowed to handle US customers only. So after my initial registration online, I was asked to call the customer care to give the same details again to open the bank account. As everyone would say "I know what it is like to call customer care", after hours of talking and repeating same things and even faxing all the necessary documents twice to avoid the delays of snail mail, it happened that the fax has not reached the Citibank office and I have to call the customer care again to check on the status after few more days. Frustrated after waiting for more than a month and still not able to open a bank account, I decided to give up on using Citibank.

Coincidently, I had to take my colleague who came from India recently to Bank of America office last week during the lunch break. So when he went with the assistant to open an account for him, I used the opportunity and I also opened a savings bank account within the next 30 mins. That was faster than billing in Wal-mart and it was my second best experience in opening bank account. The first being with ICICI Bank when I joined Infosys in Bangalore. All the freshers were seated in a large auditorium and the forms were circulated to everyone like exam papers. At the end of next 10 mins, the forms were collected back and my first own Debit card was in my hands ready to be swiped.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Dusting the Production server

It has been more than a year since I stepped into the never-ending production support story of our project. Originally planned to be shutdown by August 2007, the project is still healthy and active. Though there were many signs of shutdown before, there would always be extensions similar to the completion of highway projects in Bangalore. After crossing many barriers, a new deadline of 31st March 2008 is currently placed.
This is different from the previous deadlines because we are really asked to plan for planning the shutdown (you read it right). And as a first step, we decided to clean the dust covered servers which have many uninhabited directories similar to dungeons in a castle. There would be bulk of files which were created in some place of the history and were never used. It was also like cleaning the closet after years of dumping clothes and items one over the other and by digging into it, one might find things which are long forgotten and for which we would have searched everywhere except the closet in time of need. And in a very similar manner, I found so many backups which occupied almost 50% of disk space and log files of more than 100,000 in number and also personal directories of all the old developers who worked in the initial stages of the project. It was a delightful experience to recall the initial days of the project with very primitive codes that have undergone hundreds of changes by now. Also the personal directories containing test scripts and backup files with interesting naming conventions became good time pass for the day.
And as if these are not enough for the day, I found an interesting file which I think if displayed here would not be a problem of Intellectual Property Rights Violation. For the file can be considered as relevant to the project only if a Cable services client is ordering turnips and lettuces as part of the Eat-while-you-watch campaign. You can find the file below without any tampering or change.

$ cat vegetables
green beans:32

I hope who ever created this file in the production server remembered to buy them as his wife ordered. Or could there be a secret code that will place the order for these items automatically in Wal-Mart everyday? There are still more dungeons to explore. So I will update later if I find anything more interesting than this.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

The One-eyed Nissan

The one-eyed pirate finally got his other eye fixed on Friday. I am talking about my Nissan's head lights. I am not sure from when it had been wearing the eye patch, but it is many months since I had clearly seen the road during the night. And it was the left eye that was hurt added more difficulty of seeing the road. Please note, in US, the steering wheel is in the left side of the car and naturally the driver has to hold the steering wheel while seeing the road. With not much experience in driving car at nights (I couldnt drive at day time either as I didnt have license before), I first assumed that it is the maximum brightness from any proper headlights. And sometimes, I would blame my glasses which many times is covered with fingerprints. But it was not before hyperactive HemanT(pronounced 'T' stressed) noticed the patch on the left eye that I understood that there was nothing wrong with my eyes. I understood that I had to fix the headlights soon. Even so, as people say there has to be time for everything, the time never came for fixing the head lights for a very long time.

My initial thought of using fix-it-on-your-own proved to be dangerous as I had played repairing toy cars only and the result had always been worse than before. For example, in my childhood when I tried to fix the door of my sister's precious toy car, which she never allows anyone to touch, I had removed the whole body of the car but for some strange reason, I couldnt put it back. I do not remember what happened after that. I can only recall my sister crying on the top of her voice. So keeping away the self-fix option, I decided to search for a mechanic. Consulting with friends who already own vehicles, it became clear that in US, the service charge will be costlier than the product cost. No wonder, IT service industry is a very costly business here and it is a boon to all the Indian IT companies for drilling money better than oil through mass and cheap labour. Because of these reasons, I spent more time on trying to find the economic store that will not drill my wallet. And it took me 2 months to understand that there is none to fix my car without drilling my credit card through my wallet. And thats why at last I took my car to the Nissan authorised car service center who charged me 40 bucks for doing basic checkup and reported that everything was fine including my head lights. Only after asking twice about the left eye of my car were they able to identify the problem. I just wonder how difficult will it be to test the car head lights? May be the mechanic checked everything by sitting inside the car like me. Or may be he was having problems with his eyes that he couldnt identify the brightness (not)emitted from the head lights. Or may be he thought my car was winking at the new Nissan 350z parked next to it. But he should have realised that something is wrong when it winked at the Nissan Frontier truck. Whatever it may be, he finally fixed it by replacing the head lights and added another 40 dollars to the bill. With the card swiped and 80 dollars bidding bye-bye from my wallet, my car got its eyesight back and it winks no more at others including Porchse Speedster at night.