Thursday, April 28, 2016

Aditi Hosabettu's House Warming Ceremony

On one April morning in 2016, Aditi Hosabettu personally invited me to her house warming ceremony at Gundmi, a town on the highway connecting Udupi to Mangalore. And so I set out to attend the ceremony along with Anuj Duggal (Yes, the Anuj Duggal from the Inside Out posters and Intel Software Innovator Summit and GDG events).

For the journey we decided to board the bus at Yeshwanthpur KSRTC bus stop which is a 15 minute walk from my home. And since we planned to be on time, we reached my home early, freshened up and roamed around Mahalakshmi Layout which is popular for its wide variety of temples. I have been living in Mahalakshmi Layout for all my life and I had never visited the museum located in the Srinivasa temple, the bus stand where I caught bus every-day. It looked like a good opportunity to take Anuj there and look at the place myself, and so it was (^_^)

That night we boarded the bus as planned and then got engaged in nostalgic conversations till we reached the destination, Shastri Circle (Named after the late Lal Bahadur Shastri).

Aditi had booked a grand hotel room at Sharon Hotel, for our stay where the breakfast was complementary. She also arranged for a car to take us where-ever we wanted and assigned Mr. Ratnakar to take us to the tourist spots nearby. In his demeanor, Mr. Ratnakar was very friendly, jovial and told us the story of Kollur Mookambika and explained the different characteristics of all the places where he took us.

The functions was scheduled on Friday evening and since we had time in the morning, we had time to go to some local tourist spots. And so we went to 4 places namely:
  1. Hatti Angadi (Vinayaka Temple)
  2. Baindoor Beach
  3. Kollur Mookambika Temple
  4. Maravanthe beach

After having taken the blessings from Hatti Angadi, we were surprised to see the Baindoor beach all for ourselves. Me and Anuj were literally the only 2 people at the sea-shore and collected lot of sea shells and coral formations for the memory of the journey.

At Mookambika temple, we got to spend time with the temple elephant that was blessing temple visitors with its huge trunk. It was a treat to see the goddess especially after listening to the stories from Mr. Ratnakar.

From there on, we set out to our hotel, and as we passed by Maravanthe beach, we decided to walk around and lay down at the stone pedestal facing the sea. After a good nap, we both decided to go back to the hotel. Even-though this beach is famous for its mesmerizing road separating the sea from the river, some fly-over construction was going on due to which, we could hardly see the river. Regardless of this, we spent a good afternoon listening to the sea roar.

When we returned back to the hotel, there was still time before the function, so we took rest at our rooms till our cab arrived at the venue.

Upon reaching the ceremonial house (“Parvathi Krupa”), Aditi showed us around her new house, explaining each room with respect to what was to be done in the room and why certain rooms were designed the way they were. We sat out chit-chatting and occasionally talking to some of her family members who were at the event. We left the function after having grand food and arrived at the hotel to take a grand nap.

Next day morning was the auspicious house warming ceremony. Narhar Dev Sharma, one of our Intel colleague joined us at our room and accompanied us for the rest of the day. En route, we decided to go to Aditi’s current house, for which she drove us in her Alto, where we met her mother and cousin Sandeep, who gave us a drop to the celebration house. At their house we saw peacocks roaming around and everyone in the house was busy getting ready for the event.

Upon reaching the new home, we were greeted by Hatwar uncle who welcomed all of us. The celebration included boiling a pot traditionally in the kitchen, till it overflowed. Which was accompanied by several traditional South Indian songs.

Later the family sat in the room where the God was worshiped, and chanted Rama Raksha Stothra followed by Vishnu Sahasra naama followed by beginning verses of Bhagavad Gita. The ritual continued till lunch time where we sat for lunch in the traditional South Indian style sitting along with other invitees and had lunch over banana leaf. By now, we had gotten acquainted with a lot of Aditi’s relatives and felt much welcomed.

Our plan was to visit the Udupi Sri Krishna temple in the evening, so we had checked out from our hotel and brought our luggage to the event. We set out from there at 2:45 and reached Udupi by 3:15. At the temple, we were accompanied by Rashmi and her mother who were big devotees and wanted to have Lord Krishna’s blessings. Later on that day, we went around the temple premise and came upon the spot where Madhwacharya was prophesized to have disappeared.

Having completed all the temple’s in our list we then set out to Malpe Beach, where my mother had asked us to join her. We took the local bus to Malpe beach which seemed to take a long time to reach the venue. After having played in the beach till 6:40, we decided to leave back to Udupi Bus Stand where Rashmi set out to meet her relatives, while I and Anuj decided to go to Mangalore to spend our next day exploring something different.

We enquired for good rooms that were close to the KSRTC Bus Stand in Bejai area of Mangalore. After zeroing down on staying at Hotel Panchami, we went out for lunch and ate Butter Nan for dinner while planning what to do on the next day.

We came to know about “Pilikula Nisargadhama”. It was a nature reserve that had a botanical garden integrated with a zoo. Next to that was a park with an aquarium and a lake which had boating; additionally it had a few more tourist attractions which we decided to skip due to the intense heat. The place had its own restaurant where we found the food to be delicious. The park also had lot of ducks which moved around us on floor as well as while boating. It was especially a treat to see a pair of boys feed ducks with popcorn for the first time and enjoy the experience.

We had heard a lot about Panambur beach and left as soon as we finished going through the zoo. It was at panambur beach that I ate my first Ice-gola and it was really yummy.

We got back to our rooms, packed up all our belongings and then called KSRTC about our change in boarding point. The Conductor was very friendly and pointed us the exact time at which the bus would reach our boarding point. We boarded the bus that brought us back to Bangalore, with lots of memories of fun and joy which we had experienced during our little journey to Kundapur and back.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Instinctive recognition

Instinctive recognition is an abilities that seems to have been come to humans naturally.

We come across thousands of faces in day today life and even though we don’t keep track of all these faces. It is sometimes so surprising that we tend to meet people after having talked to them for once that it is scary. . .

When we come to this world we come with an instinct of recognizing our mother, at least to some extent, and slowly we get familiar with other people like family members and friends. As we grow up we tend to decide to share our lives with a lot more people and the number of people we are familiar with gradually tends to increase over time.

From my bus travels in Bangalore, i have observed that there is a lot of thrill whenever we come across a long lost acquaintance. And even though in some situations it is awkward that we don’t remember their names. Just the feeling of being there again in our memories appeals to our being.

I am particularly baffled in the way we can recognize our friends in a dense crowd.

As human beings we have even implemented technologies like biometric verification by image-recognition, voice-recognition, finger-print, retina-scan and many such technologies.

Even though we tend to forget the names, we expect everyone we have ever met to remember our names and this is perhaps something that has been hard-coded in our nature and needs quite some time to affirm. We need to understand that each persons life is governed by his past priorities, and his life tends to be so much revolving around himself that there sometimes feels no point in just meeting so many other people.

We not only learn about other people by meeting them in person. We tend to learn about a large number of people like movie stars, sports athletes, and people who are involved in politics, religion, philosophy. We even learn about lives about terror-causing, anti-social vigilantes’ who tend to emerge from time to time.

In schools we tend to learn about historically significant figures such as the kings who have ruled our land, the freedom fighters who have fought for our countries. And from media we learn about artificially created characters such as the people living in movies, serials, cartoons, anime, news and so on.

We learn everything in our lives by studying things and people around us. We learn about how people are supposed to react to situations by observing other people. We learn what to talk, and what not to talk in some forums by looking and observing people who have been there and done that. We even set examples for those people who tend to observe us not actively in a role model kind of way but as companions who have been with us when a certain incident happened.

Doesn’t it amaze you the way some people greet you when they meet you the first time with a “Nice to meet you”, or a “Glad to meet you”. If you look at it, there is no reason for him to be glad yet; and i think it is like expressing a state of being that is yet to be in the future, while assuring themselves that you are not a complete waste of their time and resource.

There are games around instinctive recognition that have recently emerged such as "Where is Waldo", in which you have to find the guy with "red-white striped shirt, brown-boots, blue-jeans, snow-cap and a cane" in a densely crowded image.

Yes we are blessed with the gift of instinctive recognition and ignoring those around us whom we don’t recognize. However considering the fact that man is a social being, there needs to be more effort in getting involved with the people around us.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Multicolored Notes

Taking notes in different ink-colored pens is here referred to as multicolored notes. I had a teacher during my pre-university schooling who had mandated the maintenance of multicolored notes for his subject and the format he had specified was:
1) heading in red
2) underlining in black
3) content in blue

Regardless of the importance of the topic, this teacher had mandated the practice. And though I had not seen the importance of this practice, It was not until recently that i tried this art and was fascinated by its several benefits.

To   begin with, notes taken in multicolored ink tends to look neat and well documented. It might seem as complete waste of time and resources to some reading this but trust me in several occasions this art is God-sent.

There were several occasions where I had come across classmates who had multicolored pens with them during engineering. Who seemed to be very good at switching the pens even as the teacher went ahead in the topic explanation. I had a practice of bringing just the blue colored pen to the class and for some reason, I lacked the enthusiasm to switch to multicolored note taking.

Recently how-ever when I had to attend a 5 day lecture some of which involved note taking, I got myself pens of color red, black and blue and tried to stick to the 3 rules mentioned above as much as possible, and to my amazement I found that:
1) I was suddenly concentrating a lot on the content, even though the topic was covered post lunch
2) The switching of pens meant that I had to concentrate on the pen switch as well as what was being covered, so there was little scope for boredom ( or the accompanied yawning).
3) There was not only the alertness to keep myself from writing with spelling mistakes, There was now an additional overhead of using the right colored pen for the right context, so i had to be extra aware.
4) I also realized that even though I have one of the less attractive hand-writings (~_^), people around me were amazed at the way I was frequently changing the color of my pen.

Additionally I realized that since I was using 3 pens now instead of one, the pen was likely to last much longer, thus reducing the overhead of me having to get a different pen when the one i had ran out of ink.

I even tried to switch the color of the pen between words in a sentence, where i wrote the normal text in blue while the keywords were in red. At some point, I decided to draw the block diagram with black ink while the text was in black, while the arrows were in red. I have tried several such combinations, like writing the bullets in red, important points surrounded by a black outline, leaving little red stars (*) at important points and so on. But the essence here is, I was adding a lot of context switch and it did not reduce my performance in taking notes, rather improved it.

As children, we are encouraged to recognize alphabets associating them with colored alphabet blocks as toys, but as we grow older, we get used to the bureaucracy and stick to the eye appealing blue colored pens. The problem begins right from schools where we are enforced to write in black pencils and this practice then changed to blue pens as we grow older.

These days the concept of multicolored writing has been adapted in writing computer programs as well, where we see that a text editor is able to color different parts of the code based on key word, indentation or context such as comments or system library derivatives.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Programs are Poems

Programs and poems are two very much similar things. I would say that in a programming language, a well written program is as noble as a poem.
Compiling a poem requires knowledge of grammar underlying a language. This is so even when it comes to programming except that the word grammar is referred to as the syntax of a programming language.
A program is often inspired by details which a common individual seeks. While a poem is the expression of what an individual sees.
Programming is recognized by the format in which it is written. It is a norm for most programming languages to have clear demarcations to indicate purpose such as the use of ‘:’ and “;’ in c, c++,m Java, ...

Today we have innumerable editors what color specific words such as the key words in a specific color so as to give the programmer a better feel of the programming experience.

The loss of a punctuation mark can give a completely un-in-intended meaning in a program as well as a poem.
Yes the advent of internet has had its own impact in both these fields. It has enabled people who are new to a language to do come up with amazing creations. While websites like ‘stackoverflow’ provide snippets required to execute the intention of a programmer, it is known that a good duration of experience can move a real difference between a a well written program, good performing, sensitive program and total chaos.
Wrong choice of words while writing a poem/program can make all the difference in perception. As length of poem/program increases, a user takes longer to comprehend the implications. Since people cant really rely on programming languages to talk to one another, often the programs contain comments. Comments are essential to clarify the intentions with which the coding was done and thus serve to help optimize itself. Certain parts of the program can be progressively replaced by computationally efficient and syntactically convenient alibi. Like programmers have a choice of logic, poets too have a choice of conveyance.

Just as a person can be trained to program, so can be done in terms of poems. How ever not everyone turns up a work of art.

It takes attitude, innovation and passion to excel at programming. The right choice of code for a particular purpose can drastically reduce the effort in completing a project. And also reduce the effort later spent in debugging it (^_~). Good programs get appreciations and awards once in a blue moon, because Programming has been looked at in a totally different perspective as of today.
We see that great works like Shakespear’s getting a lot of recognition, however the same attitude is not seen towards programming giants. A well written program has the effect of mesmerizing an onlooker like the “list comprehension” in python.
Yes most of us aspire to write great programs but because of lack of right guidance at the right time, we see cases, where an attempt to write a brilliant poetry ends up in as a messy paragraph not standing out as a status of a poem.
In most languages, a good rhyming sentence is considered an appreciable poem. In programming, a well indented code is similarly said to be appreciable written program. The change in scenario is quite noticeable because, poems are meant to be read out loud, while that’s not the case of a programming language. A fresh mind and adequate concentration is required to write a poem/program.
One might argue that poems generally tend to carry a deep sense of emotions, this is not something we seen in a program and this difference comes from the fact that programming languages cannot be used between people to abuse each other or show love one has for another in strict linguistic sense. At best one can write a program for emotion recognition and write appropriate functions to handle the circumstance.
Programs are written for a machine to understand what humans tend to convey. Even thought the program tends to convey the requirements, there are glitches and performance penalties when time of execution is not considered in many cases. Such too is the case when it comes to poetry. A person reciting a poem is generally expected to recite it in a more or less agreeable tone to have the full impact of the poem under recital.
Programs have evolved only recently in the history of our species. Yet we have developed different styles and types of languages, in which we express and convey the desired results, from the rate at which computer programs are evolving, it can be said that the programs are here to stay and inspire generations of programmers yet to come.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Chairs in our lives

Chairs in our lives
We all have chairs at our homes. Chairs serve as a tool to sit in a comfortable and socially acceptable manner. 

Even as you are reading this post, it is likely that you are sitting on a chair while doing so. There are several other alternatives for sitting but it is most common to sit on a chair, atleast in public. Chairs have influenced a lot of changes and development, for instance, if cars didn’t have chairs, it wouldn’t have gotten so popular.

Rich people spend a lot on chairs. Almost everyone wishes to display grand chairs for guest at home by spending heavily on furniture associated with a  chair such as a coffee table, a stool, a vase stand. 

Some of the most common appearances of chairs can be sofa chair, rocking chair, wheel chair, bean chair, chair with wheels like the ones used in office, chair in the dining room, chair in a park,  chair in a bus,  commodes are chair shaped toilets (~_^).

If you think about it, childern’s parks showcase several variations of chairs. Like the sitting facility on  see-saw, slide, swing... etc.

Chairs help us overcome the force of gravity by providing surfaces to dissipate the force from our bodies on to the surface of the chair. Chairs provide support to the back and act as means to maintain one position for a long time.

The letter ‘h’ in a chair looks like a chair (^_^), just like the word ‘bed’ which looks like a bed.

Chairs have been icon of power and luxury all through the ages. The emperors throne, the presidents seat, heir to the throne are common terms of use. Chairman is a term given to a person who is a deciding committee member.

Electric chairs were used to kill death sentenced prisoners soon after its invention.

At parties, there is a famous game called musical chair, in which people get eliminated if they are not able to acquire a seat fast enough. This game is an event based game where the event is indicated by start and stop of a certain music being played. Musical chair also significance of how you can get eliminated if you are not able to react to a certain situation well in time.

Chairs clearly define boundaries between you and the person next to you.

While sitting on a chair, the body is no longer required to concentrate on balance that is required while a person is standing. As humans, we tend to stand and walk seamlessly, but try to get the same from a dog and you will see my point. Yes the center of gravity itself is shifted while sitting (^_~).

The number of legs on a chair depends on its purpose, as in the case of a car seat where it has one support, in park seats it has 2 supports and in a table chair, it generally has 4 but the number really depends more or less on choice. Chairs have influenced the way we live and here is a video that summarizes it all.

Jobs Around The World