The 220 has landed

The much awaited Pulsar 220 has landed. Arpan was able to pic up a silver demon, and his interview on the bike is up on rearset.
Pics are at flickr and Picassa

Better to live outside of the job then think it will define you

There comes a point where one discovers that a job is a means to an end, and not the means. I used to live for the next project, the cool new "thing". If you work in corporate USA that moment is so rare is is better to try for the lottery. Find somethng outside of work and life for that. Company X, the best place in the world to work, will can your ass the moment the numbers do not add up for keeping you.

Start up a company and one day you'll experience the moment when you need to "downsize" and those that had the rose colored glasses will get them stripped off their eyes.

I've spent 28 years in the IT industry, from mainframes, to minis, to Client Server, and what I have learned the most is that the love of a woman far outways a fucking promotion, the joy of doing something you enjoy far outways making the boss happy on Sunday fucking afternoon, that taking time for ones self has a better life expectancy then dieng a slow death for the fucking "Company".

Best places to work for? I had two and they got sold, chewed up and turned into shit holes, so please stop thinking that dragging you're ass to a cube every day, even if they had piano playing in the lobby is going to bring some sort of satisfaction in life. Google is no better no worse then the sweat shop in china. They just give you shinier trinkets to distract you.

Six months ago I rescued a horse from possible auction to slaughter. Today she is healthy, happy, and helping me learn to ride. The job helps me help her have a better life. That is more real, more a sense of accomplishment then pleasing some exec in an irovy tower. Piano bars, flex time, treats tossed from on high as our mouths hang open...slight of hand. To quote Mr Heston "Soylent green is Man"... Better to live outside of the job then think it will define you.

There is not best place to work other then that which fills the soul, and makes us feel like we did goo that day. a janitor may be a king compared to most IT professionals.

From a post on Slashdot. Main article here.

Verna kya ?

Finally I got caged !

Bought a car yesterday. Its the Verna Diesel from Hyundai.

  • Technology : CRDi with Variable Geometry Turbocharger
  • Valve & Cam arrangement : 16V - DOHC
  • Displacement (cc) : 1493
  • Max. Power (ps/rpm ): 110 / 4000
  • Max. Torque (kgm/rpm) : 24 /1900 ~ 2750
  • Transmission : 5 Speed Manual
  • Type : Power assisted Rack & Pinion
  • Minimum Turning Radius (m) : 5.05
  • Front Suspension : MacPherson Strut with coil springs and anti roll bar
  • Rear Suspension : Coupled torsion beam axle
  • Shock Absorbers : Gas type
  • Front Brakes : Ventilated Discs
  • Rear Brakes : Drum / Disc (ABS)
  • Overall LxWxH (mm) : 4310 x 1695 x 1490
  • Wheelbase (mm) : 2500
  • Ground Clearance (mm) : 170
  • Fuel Tank Capacity (L): 45

The best part was when after taking delivery of the car, we rolled into a petrol err diesel pump station, and asked Rs1000/- of diesel to be filled int. That came to be around 30L and almost topped up the tank ! Woot ! ! !

Thought for the day

No one wants to fail. So most of us don't even try.

Numa Numa

In case you cannot see the video link above, click here

Thought for the day

Do the right thing, rather than doing the popular thing.

World Environment Day - or how to save energy costs

(pic from Natgeo)

As per the UNEP, yesterday was World Environment Day. For those who watch TV, you would have seen some news clipping on it... and said in your mind "yeah. need to do something about it" and then forgotten about it.

Why So ?? I think that the main problem with the media is that they don't tell us the solutions, but only throw up the problems. If they do show some solutions they are of such a scale that we probably cannot do them due to the impracticalities. Yes , global warming is an issue of epic proportions, but I believe that the problem which is going to catch us with our pants down is not an issue of global warming, but of energy crisis.

Conventional Fuel vs Alternative Fuel

Conventional fuels are the ones which we have grown up with. E.g. the petrol which goes into our cars. By some estimates we only have around 20 more years of petrol available. Since price depends on supply and demand, as the demand grows with the supply decreasing, the prices are going to skyrocket. Not only that, burning of such fuels increases the energy output to the atmosphere ... leading to global warming.

So, we have to look at ways of using the natural resources around to get the energy. We already use a few of them, but they are not being used in a critical mass to really get much benifits. Anyways, every little bit helps. Some examples :

Water/hydel energy :
Most of our homes are energized by the energy of falling water getting converted to electricity.
Drawback : Huge tracts of water get water logged. This not only destroys the natural ecosystem of that place, but also causes friction between the people who get displaced.

Solar Power: Its not picked up much. Some outlying places in india use solar power to light the street lights. One of the efforts to go solar is being led by Google which is setting up a 1.6MW plant on its campus to light it up.
Advantages : works great where there is an abundance of sunlight. e.g. India, California.
Disadvantages : cannot only depend on it. E.g. in my apartment building the hot water is through solar geysers. They work great when it is hot (e.g. summers) but not when I really need the hot water (rainy cold days). It will have to work in conjunction with other power sources, but still requires lots of work.

Wind Power: Some small plants have been setup, but I havent seen any applications to our regular life so far.

How can we save on our energy consumption.

Ok, here I come to the main part of my post. I am not going to say what all you can do to save the environment, I leave that to countless other websites. Here's a howto to save your energy consumption and so your money. Makes sense eh ? :-D

1. Use a bike.
Yeah. Well , you know I have a partial liking to bikes, so this has to come up :) . However, you save money when you use a bike to commute to the office. On an average , cars give a mileage of 10kmpl-15kmpl. On an average bikes give a mileage of 30-60kmpl ! Even my bike, which is petrol hungry gives almost 2-3 times more range compared to cars. Add to it that its easier to find parking, and negotiate traffic - this is a no brainer. Check out bikenomads to get addicted to bikes!

2. Use a cycle.
For those who are also concerned about their health, nothing better than cycling. Check out bikeszone , a forum by a friend of mine in Bangalore where you will find more people who travel on cycles to office.

3. Use CFLs.
CFLs cost more than tubes or bulbs. But their power consumption is very less. a 18W CFL gives as much light as 100w bulb or 40W tube, and longer bulb life also. Lesser energy, lesser costs on your pocket.

4. Grow plants in your home.
Having potted plants at home is a great way of cooling off the home. Have you noticed when you visit a friend who has lots of plants that his house always seems cooler ? ?

5. Use good curtains.
Basic funda is to prevent the heat from outside coming in too much , as well as loosing heat to the outside.

6. For the house builders.
If you are building your own house, there are many possibilities that you can look at for your home. Some of which I know of are :
i. Using a high ceiling. Keeps the house cooler.
ii. Use double paned glass on windows. It helps to insulate the house better.

7. Use LCD monitors.
They look cool, and they use less energy. a 19" CRT monitor consumes 100W of power, while the same size LCD consumes 35W. The initial cost per monitor may be higher , but the running cost is quite low. If you notice, most companies are going the LCD way even though the intial cost is higher per unit.

8. Use energy star compliant appliances.
Energy Star reduces consumption by about 15% . Buy your next fridge, AC , etc which are Energy Star rated.

9. Position the appliances carefully.
One of the things that I see is that refridgerators are mostly kept in houses snuck up to the wall. Do you know that the cooling coils are located at the back of the fridge ? Make sure that there is ample space behind the fridge for air to recycle.

10. Keep your cars and bikes properly tuned.
A better tuned car/bike utilizes the fuel more efficiently. Make sure your vehicles are in absolutely the best condition. Do regular services for you vehicle. If you are a bike user, then it is even better as you can do some of the things yourself.

Do you have something to contribute ? drop me a line !

More links :

The Surface

Microsoft recently announced an interesting technology which they dubbed Surface. Its basically an interactive surface, and it looks quite impressive. It even feature the multi-touch feature which Steve Jobs had shown off on the iPhone at the start of the year.

The price would be quite high, not for joes like you and me. And I wonder what happens if one leaves coffee stains on it ? Apart from that, definitely something out of the sci-fi books !

Check out :
* Demo on the Microsoft Site.
* Preview on Engadget.

l33t talk

Most people by now are ok with the sms talk. 4 xmpl : ut ?

However, I recently came across the l33t talk ( leet talk) ... and I predict this may also become part of our future talk, cause most of the kids who will be tomorrows workers are getting a healthy talk of this.

l33t talk is the shorthand of online games. I play WoW and this is where I am picking up these things, and oh boy, they can be applied so easily to everyday life. So, here goes a small dictionary of the leet talk.

133t : Elite
In the game many of the monsters are elites, which means that for the same level as you, they are 2-3 times more tougher. Now, elite is too long to write, so it got converted to leet ... which got converted to 133t ( e=3) . Normal day usage would go like :" I own a zma, but oh man ... the busa is l33t!".

woot ! : expression of joy
Derived from loot + wow + other expressions of joy. Now, in the game, when you kill a l33t he drops some loot. It ranges from somthing mundane to something amazing. When you get something amazing, its like omg ! amazing ! i got it ! . That's when you say woot ! e.g. on my character Brahmos, I have the 'Greaves of Desolation' which dropped after killing a l33t - woot !

wtf : what the f***
No explanations needed. Its quite prevalent.

omg : Oh My God
The phrase probably made famous from the FRIENDs series. Too long to write it is now abbreviated to omg. Notice no use of '.' . e.g. "OMG! the new 200 fork cracks !"

ty : thank you.
Well, you thank people who help you.

gg : Good Going !
said to people who have played well. usually said after running an entire instance. Real life usage : "GG Hitanshu for making it to Leh!"

gtg : Good To Go.
This one flummoxed me a bit initially as I work in the Good Technology Group (gtg) ;) . Its basically said by people who are travelling to the same destination, usually to play instances or raids.

omw : On My Way
Again a team talk. I am on my way

k : OK
ok is small. k is smaller.

ftw : For the Win !
Its usually to show supremacy. E.g. "ZMA FTW !" (would mean the same as ZMA rules !)]

n00b : new person
Normally a new person is called newbie. This got converted to Newb, to noob to n00b (its got zeroes instead of 'o' similar to the substitution in l33t). E.g. "That n00b on the 200 could not take the curve and crashed!"

Thanks for going through an irrelevant post which I just felt like making ;)

Vibhu FTW you N00B!