Archive for August, 2010

Student Satellite Madness – VSSC ISRO India Trend

A Jew comedian goes to meet a priest in a Church expressing concern over an acquantice of his converting from Christianity to Judaism purely for the jokes. When the priest asks, “And this offends you as a Yidd?” he says, “No, it offends me as a comedian”. This skit from Seinfeld TV sitcom is what flashed in my mind when I read, ‘Students Building their Own Satellites – Fantastic Emerging Trend in India’ as it offended me as a summer intern at VSSC, ISRO in 1999 because from what I know and saw, building a satellite is trivial if one has all the fabricated materials and instructions – much like assembling a PC which a 10 year old can do these days. In fact, ISRO gets shipments of DIY boxes from various countries and I saw first-hand what “building a satellite by students” involves for most part – tightening screws and running diagnostics. Heck, I did it myself. Inspite of my cynicism, am glad that a relatively better fad has caught on amongst the student population other than movies and cricket which might give those slugging it out a fighting opportunity to escape this 3rd world garbage dump to USA or UK or Australia and just about any country stupid enough to have them inspite of all the immigration hoops…

The most difficult and expensive phase is sending the satellite into the ether and even more important is what you do with it after because otherwise, it is just space junk. I rest my case. Let me be and ponder why that chicken is crossing the road.

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    30 August, 2010 at 17:28 Leave a comment

    Company Blog Policies – Be Afraid, Very Afraid

    It has recently come to my stray attention through this that Wipro has released a blog policy for its employees. True to their catching-up and copy-cat credentials, they did it after Infosys did it. I am no lawyer nor have the patience and spare time to read drivel. Nor should you (oops). So, here is a quick summary of what it means…

    I wonder how digital coolies at these chop-shop sweatshops are taking the atrocity. Hold on a minute. Just as expected, there is no commentary on the interwebs at all. Nor any protests nor marches nor candle-light vigils. Clearly, controls are already working. Mark it for in the words that will be immortalized, oppression and bondage is a choice as much as freedom and liberty. If a large group of educated people (granted it is quasi, fake, airy and rote but still) give up freedom of expression in probably the most open medium there is because they are not allowed to or not supposed to or shackled by random rules, there is little hope for a society that is burdened to bear them. Yet, thousands of employees will go about their trivial mundane lives without a care of what it all means. Ah ingorance! thy name is bliss. Those that do are more than happy to lose their voice and just got a happy excuse. The real funny thing is the justifications of “safeguarding reputation of the brand and company” and “protecting intellectual property” and “confidentility of clients” behind these stifling guidelines. By releasing a blog policy and stating an intent to play big brother, Infosys and Wipro have damaged their pinhead reputations which makes me wonder if the powers that be followed the motto and ‘applied thought’? And by complying to this asphyxiation, our coolies have not earned any brownie points either. Cautionary tale on dangers of conformity. It makes droids out of individuals.

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      29 August, 2010 at 00:24 Leave a comment

      Rain and Umbrella – Vaana Vallappa, Law Challappa

      It’s been raining and keeping up with monsoons, here is a nice one by Anwar with some ‘Murphy Law’ about showers and umbrellas embedded somewhere…

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        28 August, 2010 at 23:31 Leave a comment

        Summer for Climate Change Scientists vs. Deniers

        Am not out of topics to be talking about the weather but just that it has been a good summer for climate scientists who seem to have got the spring in their footstep and an unwipeable smirk on their faces rubbing it in to all the global warming deniers given the spike in scorching temperatures, forest fires, water droughts, heat waves, dehydration deaths et al. all over the world, and particularly across the USA where the Republicans are being dragged closer to the altar higher the mercury rising…

        I for one do not care much about the weather having been exposed to temperatures from 50-degree to -23-degree centigrade with nothing more than a VIP banian and sandals across the spectrum. I enjoy outdoors as long as am properly insulated.

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          27 August, 2010 at 00:05 Leave a comment

          India Map WRT Kashmir on Google – Humbug

          According to this source, there has been wide coverage to the fact that Google is showing the India map wrongly with respect to Kashmir. Previously, there was some dispute over the demarcation of Arunachal Pradesh which was shown as part of China or so. Wonder what happened to that? I did not follow that up because honestly my dear readers, I don’t give a damn. Who cares about this junk anyway? This reminds me of the ye olde adage ‘penny wise pound foolish’ because the bickering is about some rocky useless piece(s) of land when 99% of the “correctly” depicted land is going to the dogs. Seriously. We are talking about cartography and accuracy now? If you roam about at your own risk and find yourself in some region surrounded by neighbourhood enemy armies of Pakistan, China, Burma, Nepal etc. you are pretty much screwed and no amount of arguing that it is the fault of Google is going to help your situation. On the ground, reality is pretty much what the barbed wires and keep-out signs state what soil belongs to which country. My advise to all of you silly jingoists out there – get a life. But of course, politicians will get some mileage with some elections or the other around the corner all the time –

          Disclaimer first. The above cartoon is a mesh of 2 cartoons by Laxman. I could have drawn it myself but as a blue-blood software engineer by training, re-use is the mantra here. Hope ToI does not mind and am sure Sir Laxman himself supports a liberal CC license. With that out of the way, everything that has India in the headline and a foriegn agent sullying the name or borders of this great country is what feeds our fat netas. I will be surprised if such a speech as depicted is not being made in some panchayat elections as we speak to ignorant babus and clueless villagers.

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            26 August, 2010 at 02:15 Leave a comment

            Beauty Paegant Slavery Proof of Women Stupidity

            I will not apologize to the fairer sex in the readership for what I am about to say. I personally do not want to believe it but all of my observations and studies point to the inevitability that women are stupid. Some say it is just a matter of cubic capacity because women have smaller brains on average. Some point to the fact that the percentage of Nobel prize winners and CEOs even if we count the gender ratio after “liberation” is skewed unfavourably towards women. Some go as far as generalizing that it is intellectual inferiority that women are underpaid in just about any profession for the same job and exploited by men over millenia left, right, top, down and center with a parallel being how we are masters of cattle. I can neither confirm nor deny these claims but I have my own theory of why I think women are stupid. Case in point, the hundreds of thousands of beauty paegants and fashion shows happening all around the world as we speak: Ages, 1 and up. Horror! there are even beauty paegants for babies too? If a large group of people of a particular gender subject themselves to objectification and humiliation repeatedly and knowingly, I am sorry to say that particular gender is stupid. To be safe and to be clear, I am a honest misanthrope, not misogynist. I respect women as much as the other Barney.
            Many people may point out that there are beauty paegants for men too but atleast they have done something like train and exercise to build muscle. What do these beauty queens do other than starve themselves and take courses to parrot the same old answers to same old questions year in and year out almost inevitably leading to the most moronic phrases ever, ‘make my country proud’ and ‘world peace’. The women who participate in these silly paegants are no morons and illiterates either like those women in 3rd world countries who are slaves to patriarchial families and religious thugs. Apparently, these ladies have degrees and hold jobs too when people who are far more smarter and prettier than them are unemployed and scratch a living toiling in burning sun and picking garbage. I fail to comprehend what is being evaluated anyway? All I see is judgments based on how these lasses look in bikinis and weird costumes and how to behave gracefully with etiquette and show spunk and personality. If so, how are these so-called liberated women any different from repressed women when they are told what to wear and how to behave? Is this not just slavery and conformance to dominating male standards by another name? I certainly think so and therein lies the proof that women are stupid so much so that they do not even know they are being stupefied and oppressed. Enough said but there we are not out of arguments and pointers. The one that takes the cake is how these women live with the titles all through their life which are absolutely stupid like Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss Earth etc. In all probability aliens in other parts of the universe will see us with the very eyes we see spiders and cockroaches and label us ugly and disgusting. Heck, the standards of beauty as defined by these beauty paegants viz. tall, fair, thin, cheeky etc. are considered outright ugly in many cultures on this very planet. How vain are the organizers to award the participants as Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss Earth etc. when if they are paraded over a good enough diverse sample, the consensus will be split and hardly unanimous. And what the heck is the difference between ‘world’ and ‘earth’ damn it? Just to be clear, I am no big fan of men either. We are stupid too for we consider it psychedelic to watch scantily dressed anorexic sick heavily made-up women walking on the ramp with empty looks on their faces. But relatively speaking, women are more stupid and participate in this male fantasy for a fistful of money, life of drugs eventually ending up as arm candy and trophy wives. I suppose that is the goal for many of these women which just gives more wood to the fire. There is a pattern here. First thing that empowered women do when they have been liberated in any society and country – Bhutan is a good example – is to objectify themselves by participating in beauty paegants and having sex with as many other people as they want playing straight into the hands of men who released the shackles for precisely this very reason. By doing this they create an elite structure alienating their sisters by sending them into a depression spiral when they cannot meet the difficult specifications of attractiveness. There is indeed truth to the adage that women are the enemies of women. Summae, gender war has truly been lost.

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              25 August, 2010 at 19:27 Leave a comment

              Pakistan Mulls over $5M Flood Relief Aid from India

              I have commented elsewhere that India giving aid to other countries is like a leper giving his alms to a beggar who is down on her luck. It is funny and sad at the same time. However, given that the floods in Pakistan is a bonafide natural disaster (from web of course), the $5M relief package that India wants to give to Pakistan is applaudable. This is a tiny pittance compared to the money spent on newspaper ads on the eve of loser dead prime-minister Rajiv Gandhi birthday (or some other major event as per Congress diktat) and generous compared to the package being given to Leh but it is applaudable nonetheless. Now a country that is battered down and a wretched beggar should not be a chooser but that is exactly what Pakistan is doing by declining the aid package on grounds of vanity without consideration that it can be of some small help (negligible really after due corruption and bureaucracy) in saving human lives. Just goes to show how invaluable and insignificant life is in 3rd world countries. Wait, is it the other way around? You are a 3rd world country if you do not diplomatically accept money from another poverty infested country for the sake of some idiotic stupid nationalistic jingoist hate-mongering pride at the cost of lives of your own citizens. That sounds about right and a cartoon is in order –

              Yep! India which is itself on a sinking ship is trying to save an adamant Pakistan which is not budging even when its master, the USA has spoken and Obama is urging. Funny thing here is that the really sad thing about all this is inspite of all the silliness, Pakistan as a failed country still performs better than India and others in many UN human development metrics. Here is evidence. Twisted and scary, innit?

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              24 August, 2010 at 17:41 Leave a comment

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