Sunday, December 27, 2009

Movies this Sem

This sem has been very very busy due to Placements, GRE, etc.. Still managed to see 50 odd movies and kept myself updated with 2.5men, himym, HM, etc. :)

Snakes on a Plane
Jashnn 2009
Musafir 2005
Kambakht Ishq 2009
Boys Telugu
Aparichit 2005
Dil Hai ki Manta Nahin
Kambakht Ishq
Hannah Montana
Black and White
Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa
Sankat City
Platoon 1986
Love Aajkal
Hungama 2003
Sehar 2005
Hyderabad Blues 1998   
If Only
Sooraj Ka Saatva Ghoda
Half Blood Prince
My Bloody Valentine
Sadak 1991
Yeh Mera India
Dil Bole Hadiappa
Terre Sang 2009
School of Rock
Superbad 2007
The Hangover
P.S. I Love You
Wake Up Sid
Wall E
Barah Aana
New York
Pulp Fiction
Before Sunrise
American Pie Book of Love
Badhai ho Badhai
Ek Vivah Aisa Bhi
3 Idiots
Before Sunset

Counter: 59 movies

Thats 190 movies and 10s of seasons this year 2009 :)
Will surely get it to 200 by 31st :)

Continuous two years with more than 200 movies a year :)

Alas, I am sure this wud not continue next year :P

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Qutab Minar 1857

Clicked some photographs of Qutab Minar on my Delhi Visit (for IndoCrypt 2009) last week.

I have tried to click photographs as if they were clicked in olden days (say 1857 :P).
I took care of two things:
1) Used "Old Photos" mode in the camera to give that look
2) Took care that there are no people in the photograph. This is difficult on a Monday afternoon when many groups of school children visit Qutab Minar.

I think a few of them came out to be good. I would love your constructive feedback. This was my first serious photography attempt, so please bear with me :P

Picasa Album:

Thank You!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Dilbert and IIT

Dilbert (as usual) Craxx IIT Big Time :)








Thanks to Ajit Burad (CSE IITB alumnus) for the collection :)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Interesting Facts About India

  • India never invaded any country in her last 100000 years of history.
  • When many cultures were only nomadic forest dwellers over 5000 years ago, Indians established Harappan culture in Sindhu Valley (Indus Valley Civilization)
  • The name 'India' is derived from the River Indus, the valleys around which were the home of the early settlers. The Aryan worshippers referred to the river Indus as the Sindhu.
  • The Persian invaders converted it into Hindu. The name 'Hindustan' combines Sindhu and Hindu and thus refers to the land of the Hindus.
  • Chess was invented in India.
  • Algebra, Trigonometry and Calculus are studies, which originated in India.
  • The 'Place Value System' and the 'Decimal System' were developed in India in 100 B.C.
  • The World's First Granite Temple is the Brihadeswara Temple at Tanjavur, Tamil Nadu. The shikhara of the temple is made from a single 80-tonne piece of granite. This magnificent temple was built in just five years, (between 1004 AD and 1009 AD) during the reign of Rajaraja Chola.
  • India is the largest democracy in the world, the 7th largest Country in the world, and one of the most ancient civilizations.
  • The game of Snakes & Ladders was created by the 13th century poet saint Gyandev. It was originally called 'Mokshapat'. The ladders in the game represented virtues and the snakes indicated vices. The game was played with cowrie shells and dices. In time, the game underwent several modifications, but its meaning remained the same, i.e. good deeds take people to heaven and evil to a cycle of re-births.
  • The world's highest cricket ground is in Chail, Himachal Pradesh. Built in 1893 after leveling a hilltop, this cricket pitch is 2444 meters above sea level.
  • India has the largest number of Post Offices in the world.
  • The largest employer in the world is the Indian Railways, employing over a million people.
  • The world's first university was established in Takshila in 700 BC. More than 10,500 students from all over the world studied more than 60 subjects. The University of Nalanda built in the 4th century was one of the greatest achievements of ancient India in the field of education.
  • Ayurveda is the earliest school of medicine known to mankind. The Father of Medicine, Charaka, consolidated Ayurveda 2500 years ago.
  • India was one of the richest countries till the time of British rule in the early 17th Century. Christopher Columbus, attracted by India's wealth, had come looking for a sea route to India when he discovered America by mistake.
  • The Art of Navigation & Navigating was born in the river Sindh over 6000 years ago. The very word Navigation is derived from the Sanskrit word 'NAVGATIH'. The word navy is also derived from the Sanskrit word 'Nou'.
  • Bhaskaracharya rightly calculated the time taken by the earth to orbit the Sun hundreds of years before the astronomer Smart. According to his calculation, the time taken by the Earth to orbit the Sun was 365.258756484 days.
  • The value of "pi" was first calculated by the Indian Mathematician Budhayana, and he explained the concept of what is known as the Pythagorean Theorem. He discovered this in the 6th century, long before the European mathematicians.
  • Algebra, Trigonometry and Calculus also originated in India.Quadratic Equations were used by Sridharacharya in the 11th century. The largest numbers the Greeks and the Romans used were 106 whereas Hindus used numbers as big as 10*53 (i.e. 10 to the power of 53) with specific names as early as 5000 B.C.during the Vedic period.Even today, the largest used number is Terra: 10*12(10 to the power of 12).
  • Until 1896, India was the only source of diamonds in the world
    (Source: Gemological Institute of America).
  • The Baily Bridge is the highest bridge in the world. It is located in the Ladakh valley between the Dras and Suru rivers in the Himalayan mountains. It was built by the Indian Army in August 1982.
  • Sushruta is regarded as the Father of Surgery. Over2600 years ago Sushrata & his team conducted complicated surgeries like cataract, artificial limbs, cesareans, fractures, urinary stones, plastic surgery and brain surgeries.
  • Usage of anaesthesia was well known in ancient Indian medicine. Detailed knowledge of anatomy, embryology, digestion, metabolism,physiology, etiology, genetics and immunity is also found in many ancient Indian texts.
  • India exports software to 90 countries.
  • The four religions born in India - Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism, are followed by 25% of the world's population.
  • Jainism and Buddhism were founded in India in 600 B.C. and 500 B.C. respectively.
  • Islam is India's and the world's second largest religion.
  • There are 300,000 active mosques in India, more than in any other country, including the Muslim world.
  • The oldest European church and synagogue in India are in the city of Cochin. They were built in 1503 and 1568 respectively.
  • Jews and Christians have lived continuously in India since 200 B.C. and 52 A.D. respectively
  • The largest religious building in the world is Angkor Wat, a Hindu Temple in Cambodia built at the end of the 11th century.
  • The Vishnu Temple in the city of Tirupathi built in the 10th century, is the world's largest religious pilgrimage destination. Larger than either Rome or Mecca, an average of 30,000 visitors donate $6 million (US) to the temple everyday.
  • Sikhism originated in the Holy city of Amritsar in Punjab. Famous for housing the Golden Temple, the city was founded in 1577.
  • Varanasi, also known as Benaras, was called "the Ancient City" when Lord Buddha visited it in 500 B.C., and is the oldest, continuously inhabited city in the world today.
  • India provides safety for more than 300,000 refugees originally from Sri Lanka, Tibet, Bhutan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh, who escaped to flee religious and political persecution.
  • His Holiness, the Dalai Lama, the exiled spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhists, runs his government in exile from Dharmashala in northern India.
  • Martial Arts were first created in India, and later spread to Asia by Buddhist missionaries.
  • Yoga has its origins in India and has existed for over 5,000 years. 

Update (18/12/09): Thanks to Abhishek Upadhyaya (IIT Delhi) for pointing out a mistake. India is the 7th largest country after Russia, Canada, China, USA, Brazil and Australia and not the 6th largest.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Weird things to do in Mumbai

Edited version of the list compiled by Zishaan Hayath (IITB 2005 alumnus)

  1. Get high on qawwali at Haji Ali
  2. Spot a celebrity at Juhu PVR
  3. Crane your neck to see the Bombay Stock Exchange building
  4. Spot a leopard in IIT Bombay campus. If you can't, then spot a girl
  5. Enjoy a play in Prithvi Theatre
  6. Enjoy the NCPA in a play or opera
  7. Haggle for non-antiques in Chor Bazaar
  8. Face the high tide on Worli seaface
  9. Bet money on race horses at the Royal Western India Turf Club, Mahalaxmi
  10. Dangle your feet, lean back on your palms and enjoy the sea from the Marine Drive promenade
  11. Go for a heritage walk in the Naval Dockyard (first Sunday every month, Indian nationals only)
  12. Explore the Sanjay Gandhi national park. A national park in city limits? Oh yeah!
  13. Soak in the Victoria Terminus
  14. Watch DDLJ at Maratha Mandir
  15. Party at Hard Rock Cafe and mourn for a minute the death of mills around Parel
  16. Jog on Juhu beach
  17. Sit on a tetropod at Nariman Point in midnight till police constables shoo you away
  18. Stand still on flyover bridge at Dadar station and watch the crowd whiz by you
  19. Ride the Victoria on Marine Drive
  20. Discover the city's Jewish connection at Keneseth Eliyahoo Synagogue
  21. Watch sunset over Aksa beach in Madh Island
  22. Discover the underbelly of Bombay in Dharavi
  23. Stay for a night at Taj Mahal Palace hotel. You definitely want to tick off this luxury address for the oh-I-stayed-there-for-a-while conversations, don't you?
  24. Catch the national madness of cricket in Oval Maidan
  25. Gaze at the Queen's Necklace from the Hanging Gardens at dusk
  26. Hunt for antique furniture (real or fake?) in Oshiwara
  27. Buy books from roadsides around Flora Fountain
  28. Envy the private palaces of Malabar Hill
  29. Party on a ferry in the Arabian Sea off Gateway of India
  30. Take a break from the city. Vasai offers the ramparts of Bassein fort, ruins of Portugese churches and East Indian food
  31. Trek in Sahayadris
  32. Say hello to the fauna at Byculla zoo
  33. Dare the red light district of Kamatipura
  34. Bow your head before city's famous deities: Mumbadevi, Mahalaxmi, Walkeshwar, Siddhivinayak, Iskcon
  35. Dine where Shahrukh Khans and Ness Wadias dine: Olive, Indigo
  36. Feel the sufi mysticism at dargahs of Haji Ali and Maqdoom Ali Mahimi
  37. Gape at famous residences: Shahrukh Khan's Mannat, Amitabh Bachhan's Jalsa
  38. Explore the Powai and Vihar lakes
  39. Visit the museums: Prince of Wales, Monetary, Modern Art, Mani Bhavan
  40. Admire the British era architecture in Fort: Churchgate station, Western Railway headquarters, High Court, General Post Office, Telegraph Office, Police Headquarters
  41. Learn about the rock-cut architecture: Elephanta, Kanheri, Mahakali and Karla caves
  42. Explore the churches: Gloria Church, Byculla, Portugese; Mt Mary Church, Bandra W, Portugese, 1640; St Michaels Church, Mahim, 1565, rebuilt 1973; St Thomas Cathedral, Flora Fountain, 1718; Wodehouse Church, Colaba, 20th century; Afghan Church, Navy Nagar, Colaba, 1858; Our Lady of Salvation Church, Dadar W, Portugese, 19th century; St John Baptist, Seepz, 1579; St Peter's Church, Bandra, 1852, rebuilt 1938; St Andrew's Church, Bandra, Portugese, 1575
  43. Check out an art exhibition: Jehangir Art Gallery, Fort; Tao Art Gallery, Worli; Piramal Art Gallery, Nariman Point
  44. Buy a vintage bollywood poster in Mini Market or Lamington Road
  45. Getaway to the beaches around Bombay: Alibag, Kashid, Murud, Nagaon
  46. Travel to places overnight: Goa, Ajanta Ellora, Mahabaleshwar, Pune, Khandala and Lonavala
  47. Discover the charm of marble tabletops, bentwood chairs and irani chai at Parsi cafes
  48. Catch behind the scenes action at a Bollywood studio
  49. Ride a vintage lift in a 100 year old building
  50. Travel in a local train. How about the Virar Fast?
  51. Ride a double decker bus. Isn't Bombay the only city where they still run them?
  52. If you have made it to a penthouse in Bombay, you might as well enjoy the view
  53. Drink cutting chai, eat vada pav
  54. Gorge on late night sandwiches in Juhu
  55. Sip some wine at an expensive seaside restaurant: Vie Lounge, Juhu; Dome, Intercontinental, Marine Drive; Aurus, Juhu; Salt Water Grill, Girgaum Chaupaati; Bayview Bar, Nariman Point
  56. Figure what all the fuss is about having a beer in Mondegar or Leopold
  57. Jack you car bonnet using a cold-drink bottle and eat kababs at Bade Miyan in Taj's back alley
  58. Eat at Amar Dhaba
  59. Walk the nostalgic streets of Kotachiwadi and pay a tribute to Anant Ashram - once the mecca of fine and authentic East Indian cuisine
  60. Smoke a hookah at roof-top restaurant Koyla in the Arab quarters of Colaba
  61. Indulge yourself with fruity flavors of Naturals ice cream. And if it's summer, try a cup of alfonso mangoes with malai ice cream
  62. Learn out the art of ordering tea in a streetside cafe. "Ek paani kum dena."
  63. Drink Kingfisher, Cobra or Zingaro in your neighborhood look-alike bar of Nightlovers
  64. Try the green chilli ice cream at Bachelorrs
  65. Swing to some live music as you enjoy your continental meal at Not Just Jazz By The Bay. Do pay attention to the witty hoarding outside as you leave the place
  66. Run the Bombay Marathon (Jan)
  67. Enjoy the Kala Ghoda arts festival (Feb)
  68. Cheer 'Mumbai Indians' in an IPL cricket match at Wankhede statdium (May-Jun)
  69. Get drenched to the bone while biking in the monsoons (Jul-Sep)
  70. Sing "Govinda aala re aala" as 40 feet high human pyramids take the prized matka (Aug-Sep)
  71. Get lost in the crowds of Ganesh Chaturthi (Sep)
  72. Watch thousands of pink flamingos in the mangroves at Sewri (Nov-May)
  73. Eat nihari, kababs and sweetmeats around Masjid on the eve of Eid (Ramzan)
  74. Run a 'free hug' campaign. This is Bombay, meri jaan!