Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Timetable layout - term 3

Probably my most audacious attempt at a timetable layout. It was very difficult to resist the temptation of making it a coloured layout. But, a decision is a decision. And I had absolutely no reason to change it. So black-and-white it is.

Yet another fleeting year

My resolution for 2012 is to not have any resolutions. No resolutions, no expectations, no boundaries, no rules. It's probably going to be my last year of "freedom" if you know what I mean, though I don't see why anything has to change when "it" happens. Anyway, just in case, I've decided that for this year I'll drive my time-machine from the future, park it in the present and make the most of what the present lays in front of me - be a little impulsive. I've got to make my friends stop calling me "mom".

As for last year's resolutions, as with all resolutions, all of them were broken. Except one - do not get married. And with no boyfriend in sight, I can be reasonably sure that the resolution won't be broken in 2012 either.

2011 has been quite eventless, except for my getting into MDI which was, somehow, completely unexpected. Though eventless, it has been a year of self-awakening. The image I had of myself and of the world has faded to give rise to a new realization. And it is with this realization that I'm going to step into 2012 and be the best I can be.

Happy 2012!

Author in the house

We've now got an author at home! Mum's book about some god-alone-knows-what super-speciality topic is now selling on amazon and flipkart! She makes me so proud.

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Long cold nights

The Thickest Meanest Fattest Blanket I've Ever Snuggled Under

And I'm loving it. Experiencing "real" winter for the first time ever in my life with Gurgaon's nights starting by 5:30pm and temperatures in single digits at nights adds to the whole "MBA experience". When winter was just beginning, people who had already experienced the harsh unforgiving Delhi winters had painted a you-will-not-survive-this picture of it. And I really thought I wouldn't survive it. But it hasn't been bad at all until now. I still manage to walk around the campus at 4am with just a sweatshirt on my regular wear and socks on my feet. But I'm starting to think that won't be possible anymore. The Gurgaon temperature forecast for the weekend says 2 degrees. Last night it was 4 degrees and I could just barely manage to hold the fork while eating maggi at 3:30am at Arcus. With the end-term exams starting in less than a week, I'm just hoping and praying that I'll be hold the pen firmly. And that reminds me, I need to start studying.
Experienced heavenly warmth last night

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Timetable Layout - Term 2

In black and white, as decided previously.
Fonts used: Butterfield Demo (Monday, Tuesday etc.) and Barbarello. See the contrast?

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

The End

No more Harry Potter to look forward to. I watched the final movie today, and all the thoughts that I had after I finished the last book came back after watching the movie. After I read the book, I got the feeling that JKR just wanted to get over with the book, even at the cost of sounding a tad bit illogical - case in point being, Voldemort died because he didn't understand how wands work while all this while Voldemort was supposed to be the greatest wizard, albeit dark, after Dumbledore. Surely, Voldemort would know something as simple as that being a genius that he is. I got the feeling that JKR had run out of ideas to finish the story.

And that's how I felt after watching the final part today. The movie was carelessly executed, confident that people would watch it no matter what. The movie concentrated on stunning visual effects than the storyboard or the acting or the screenplay. Especially the screenplay. It felt like a bad cut-paste job. Much left to be desired. But, it's Harry Potter after all. The last Harry Potter movie. So I'm not going to complain too much. Certainly not the best movie, but an entertaining and emotional one nevertheless.

I want to write more, but I just found out (2am) that we have a quiz tomorrow, and I've never opened the book for the (faff) subject. Got to study. Bye.

P.S. I ♥ Snape

Sunday, 10 July 2011

Timetable layout - Term 1

We don't have a colour printer. So I had to make one in black and white. I'll probably make all my time-tables for all the terms in black and white.

Original psd is here (File->Download Original)


Yet another party. This one was arranged by us, the juniors, as way of giving thanks to the seniors for such a wonderful welcome party last week. So we had to arrange funds, lights, food, drinks (the only reason most people come to the party...unlimited free booze), posters, DJ and other entertainment. Everything went perfectly well except for the uncle we had for a DJ. The bad DJ spoilt the entire experience, though on the bright side this time we were dancing with known people as opposed to random unknown people last week. Now that a week has passed since the last party, you kind of have an idea who your friends are going to be. There's this bond and trust and a feeling of being protected that's built when you dance with your new friends, especially when there are horribly drunk guys around you who have gone loony.

Now now, don't get me wrong. We don't have a party every week. As far as I know, we won't be having another party for a long time. Besides the reason of increasing senior-junior interaction, this one was more of a training for organizing events on short notice. That's the culture over here - the seniors teach the juniors everything they need to know (apart from academics) while at MDI. But then today when we were performing for the seniors, the seniors threw genda phools at us, created a racket with plates from the mess, booed and shooed us, and that honestly looked so cute. They looked like mischievous little kids who only looked like 24 year olds. Someone told me that post-graduate college is not as much fun as under-graduate college because in post-graduate college everyone's grown older and mature and lose that child in them. But I'm having more fun now than I had in my undergrad college. Today's experience makes me realise that students will always be students however old they are.

That reminds me, no matter what college it is - a college with 99%ilers or a college with 80%ilers - everybody cribs about having to study. When I came here I expected everybody to be nerds always engrossed in a book or some sort of project, but reality was much more real. People do most of their academic studies a few days before the exam, like always. This college is no different from any other college, well of course, except for the quality of students and that adds a whole new dimension to learning - learning from and with really smart peers.

I'm going to stop for now. The party has ended. The sun has risen. It's almost 7 a.m. Everybody's gone to bed and so must I. I will continue my bakar in some other post some other day. Good night.

Sunday, 3 July 2011

Reason and Emotion

Here's a lovely animation about reason and emotion, and how it played its part in World War II.

Saturday, 2 July 2011

This is the life

It's 4:45 a.m. I'm very sleepy and half of what I'm writing right now may not make much sense. But tonight was the best night I've had in a very long time. The Director's Dinner in the evening was just an excuse for the guys and girls to stay out of the hostels. It was also the first weekend when we weren't assigned projects or presentations and would probably be the only such weekend. We decided to make the most of it. From casual talk to discussion to trading ghost stories to playing UNO to playing Mafia to playing Dumb Charades, from four of us at around 10pm to around 20 at 4:30am I don't remember the last time I was with so many new people having so much fun. The boys really are true gentlemen. I don't know if it was the effect of having to offer a seat to the lady when all seats were occupied during the induction week (much to their consternation) or the effect of simply joining a professional course, they are very courteous towards the ladies which is very nice to see. Life over here is very different from my life during engineering, the most astounding being boys and girls being able to visit each other's rooms.

It's been quite a joyride till now at MDI. The induction week that started Sunday evening and ended a week later felt like military camp. Torturous though it was, looking back at that week now brings back smiles, laughter and very fond memories. We couldn't have asked for sweeter or more friendlier seniors and that is what makes living at MDI so much more nicer. The professors are very friendly too and my, what patience and dedication they have. But what makes MDI most exciting, of course, is my own batch of classmates. I never thought I'd make such good friends just 10 days into the course. Of course, when you spend 18 out of 24 hours together it's bound to happen.

In short, it has been a great start and I hope I have a lot of exciting times ahead.

Saturday, 4 June 2011

Chalo Dilli

Just when I was starting to love Bangalore, the journey of my life is taking me to Delhi where I know one thing for sure that an experience of a lifetime awaits me.

From this point on, I honestly have no plan. Well, except those do-well work-hard ones. But otherwise I'm just going to enjoy the ride for a while.

Dilli, here I come, ji.

Saturday, 7 May 2011

A Moment of Silence

For all the colours you've brought into my life, for all the wonderful memories and in spite of all the tears, you will always be missed.

May your soul rest in peace, Punto.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

My own little Italy (continued)

This is a continuation of an old post "My own little Italy". I cannot believe I missed mentioning something so close to my heart. My school - St. Gerosa High School - is named after an Italian saint, Vincenza Gerosa.

Vincenza Gerosa (born in the late 1700s), along with Bartolomea Capitanio, founded the Sisters of Charity of Lovere. Incidentally, Capitanio is another school a few kilometres from my own school. The buildings opposite to my school belong to the Sisters of Charity. They run an orphanage, a primary school for the financially weak and a day care centre, where I was sent for a short period, if I remember right.

I recall now, every once in 3-4 years, our teachers would announce the arrival of sisters from Italy, and when they arrived, we'd have a special assembly for them, with dances and songs and skits. It was a huge deal. We would go the chapel to pray (The chapel is inside the school campus. The building is out of bounds for students, per se, unless you say you want to go to the chapel to pray), but more importantly to greet the sisters from Italy. They were ever so sweet. The serenity and smile on their faces were only paralleled by Mother Superior who'd visit once in a while. I never missed an opportunity to greet her whenever I heard she was there. Her serene smile would make my day. The only other famous person with a smile like that is Mother Teresa. But, I digress.

I think my sister's school too - St. Agnes High School - is named after another Italian saint whom they call "Agnes of Rome", though it isn't run by the Sisters of Charity.

This Italian-ness of Mangalore intrigues me and makes me want to dig deeper into its history as to why so many places in and around Mangalore have Italian names. The Christians in Mangalore are from Goa and of Portuguese descent, not Italian. And as far as my knowledge on Indian history goes, the Portuguese, the Dutch, the French and the British arrived in India before the British Raj was set up. So now it's even more intriguing.

Friday, 1 April 2011


Animation of just a second took me more than six hours to finish. I'm excited about tomorrow. I hope Team India wins the cup.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Free! Free! Free!

And I thought this day would never come. I finally finish the last interview for the MBA admission process. Started with SP Jain and ended with MDI, though I wish I get into NITIE. I loved the campus, the seniors, the atmosphere and what more? It's in Mumbai, the place to be!

But then there's a part of me that wants me to get a job, something inside my head that tells me that a job is the best way to go. The idea of getting paid doing what I love is very exciting; so exciting in fact that I've had thoughts of bunking a few interviews. I'm glad I didn't, because those interviews were a whole new experience of their own, each completely different from the other, but each one just as enriching as the other.

As of now, it's a huge relief to get the whole process over with. I can now read that book without thinking of that current affairs mag I haven't read. I can now watch a movie without worrying about wasting time. I can now take all day to finish my animation assignment. On the flipside, I can no longer give excuses for not finishing assignments. That reminds me, I have a very lengthy assignment to submit on Thursday which I lied about having started. So while I go start the assignment, I give this, for you to ROTFL -

Friday, 25 March 2011

emotion. brain. art

I've been wanting to share a few things over here for a long time now, but lethargy (and well, laziness too, to an extent) got the better of me. I cleared up my desktop today, finally, and was scouring the internet for wallpapers of the movie Tangled when this expression of Rapunzel caught my attention. The expression intrigued me so much I was compelled to share it immediately. What intrigued me so much about it is that the expression conveys three emotions - fear, wonder and intent - with hardly any noticeable muscle or eyebrow movement, unlike most other expressions which usually show dramatic movements of the eyebrows and muscles. I don't know much about the Facial Action Coding System yet, but the intensity score for the action units that make up the expression is probably an A or a B. Maybe even a C. Think about it that way and the expression doesn't seem so intriguing after all. But I still am very intrigued. I'd like to believe that it takes a certain amount of expertise to get such an emotion on an animated face.

Tangled reminds me of a book I finished reading a week ago. What happens when neurons in our brain get tangled and crosswired? Lots of interesting disorders ranging from the familiar to the unbelievable. Some disorders make us think, wonder and question our own sense of being and our perception of the world around us. The brain is the most complicated and fascinating organ of the human body. One small damage to a tiny part of it and it can make you think your left arm is your brother's and not yours. Dr. V. S. Ramachandran explains it all splendidly in his book "Phantoms in the Brain". I've never found a non-fiction book so riveting before. Here's a very interesting lecture he delivered at UCSD on what is it in his brain that makes him like a certain kind of art. The video is an hour and half, but very engaging. But, I speak for myself. I've always been interested in all things brain ever since the day my biology teacher in school made me draw a picture of the brain as homework that had me wonder, this yucky thing is the reason I can think and feel and reason? Wow! If you feel the way I do, then go ahead and watch it. You won't be disappointed.

Monday, 14 March 2011

Art Thou A Nerd

If you are, then you are probably already aware of what makes today so special. Today is Pi Day. Yes, today nerds celebrate the mathematical constant pi.

All non-nerds out there, you have another day to celebrate. July 22nd. Because, July 22nd is Pi Approximation Day. A day to celebrate the fraction 22/7.

Or does that make you a supernerd?

Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Out of harm's way

The Libyan unrest will forever be etched into my memory, because for me and my family it was personal. My dad was evacuated from Libya only two days ago. Thankfully, he left Zawiyah just before things got worse. Not that things were good before he left; in fact, when I called him up two days before he left Zawiyah he told me that he could hear gunshots outside his house. I was so scared I thought it was best if he just stayed inside the house; getting out of the house even for evacuation could be dangerous. But yesterday's news showed what would've happened if he had stayed there any longer - dozens of civilians were killed.

Dad's evacuation would've been painless if his bag wasn't stolen on his way to Tunisia. Dad and his Indian colleagues were to go to an airport in Tunisia to take a flight back to India. The Indian embassy sent buses and trucks to Zawiya. People would take the bus, and the luggage would be brought in trucks to Tunisia. At the Tunisian border, he had to give up his simcard and his phone! This meant he wouldn't be able to contact us until he reached India. On reaching Tunisia, he found one of his two bags missing -- the bag that had his laptop (months worth of research!) and all the cash. His bag was stolen. Dad was now rendered phone-less and penniless. Dad could manage just one call back home explaining his situation and that he had a few friends helping him out. He stayed in Tunisia for four days until his name turned up on the roster of evacuees. By then all his friends had already been evacuated. His stay at Tunisia, however, seemed pleasant because he and all the evacuees were accommodated at a three-star hotel and were provided with free and unlimited food (both veg and non-veg) throughout the day.

On the fourth day, he boarded EgyptAir (apparently Indian Airlines wasn't the only carrier bringing back Indians) which brought him to Mumbai with one stop at Cairo International airport for refuelling. At Mumbai, the embassy gave every evacuee a free air/rail ticket to anywhere in the country along with Rs.2000 so they could reach home comfortably. Dad was given a 3AC ticket to Chennai that evening. He reached Chennai the next evening. My mum, sis and I were at our native place (Berhampur, Orissa) for my cousin's wedding ceremony all this while which, of course, we couldn't attend. We reached the morning after dad reached, but boy were we relieved to have him back and safe.

Dad is very upset about losing his laptop and all his research work in it, but he sure has kind words for the way the Indian government handled the evacuation process. Mum also agrees that the officials were very supportive when she had called the control centre at Delhi to find out what and how things were being done.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Technopop, anyone?

Made another track. Not too bad I think. But it's ironic that I ended up making exactly the genre of music -- techno -- that I'm not really fond of.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Phineas and Ferb

Cartoons are the best thing that happened to mankind. After music, of course.
"Mom! Phineas and Ferb are making a title sequence"
Phineas and Ferb is the Tom and Jerry of my adulthood and I have every reason to believe it might soon be the Tom and Jerry of the new generation. I haven't seen a funnier and wittier animated series in recent times. Even the new Tom and Jerry series aren't as much fun. Quite frankly, I don't even like the new Tom and Jerry series. They've turned too violent for my taste. And that is true for most cartoons on TV today. Well, at least, the shows on the cartoon channels in India viz., Cartoon Network, Nickelodeon, Animax and Hungama. Pogo and Disney/Disney XD are probably the only channels that have good, healthy, fun and mentally stimulating shows for kids. I personally am of the opinion that there is a limit to schadenfreude even when it is a cartoon.

And that is why Phineas and Ferb is such a great show. There are lot of good things about the show, apart from the neat flash animation (If I'm not wrong I remember reading about the show winning an award for the best flash animation) and great comic timing. You see, Phineas and Ferb are step-brothers and they make a great team. The show takes place during their summer vacation and the duo wants to spend their vacation productively. Nothing is impossible, but nothing happens by magic either. And everything they do is for the benefit (or fun) of not just themselves but everybody in the neighbourhood. They don't cause harm to anyone, neither does Candace, nor Doofenschmirtz (thanks to Agent P aka Perry The Platypus). The dialogues are clever and witty. No lowbrow humour. It has also got catchy musical numbers, my favourite being Gitchee Gitchee Goo and Backyard Beach. So you see, it's the perfect show.
Perry The Platypus fights Doofenschmirtz, who wants to destroy the entire Tri-State area
Heinz Doofenschmirtz is my favourite character. His antics are so endearing, not to mention his accent (voiced by one of the creators, Jeff "Swampy" Marsh Dan Povenmire). Wait. I think I like Candace more. Especially that wicked laugh of hers when she thinks her brothers (Phineas and Ferb) are "busted" for sure. Or the cute little noise that Perry The Platypus makes. And the way Isabella says, "Hey Phineas, Whatcha doooin?". Ah well I can't decide who it is. The entire show is just so wonderful. 

So, go on then. If you aren't a fan of the series yet, watch the show and join the club.

Tuesday, 11 January 2011

Motion Graphics #1

First one. So don't be too harsh.
Double Trouble from Manasa Malipeddi on Vimeo.