< January 2006 >
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Fri, 20 Jan 2006:

Going ... YES !!!

posted at: 18:10 | path: /travels | permalink | Tags: ,

Livejournal has done something irritating, all the friend links in livejournal has suddenly become cross-domain. This means that all the stuff I've hacked together to make my LJ more interesting now no longer works because it uses regular XmlHttpRequests. I cannot follow posted-by links without going cross-domain.

Anyway, I think they just did that because blogspot does that. The earlier faq used to be only for paid uses, but looks like there's a t3rmin4t0r.livejournal.com.

Just don't have the energy to sit down and rewrite all those to use GM_XmlHttpRequest... What about your scripts ?

Girls are like domain names, the ones I like are already are taken.
Well, you can still get one from a strange country !

posted at: 02:12 | path: /rants | permalink | Tags: , ,

Thu, 19 Jan 2006:

Just called up the New Zealand Embassy and talked to my Visa Officer, who by now knows me by Name. They have been very nice and instead of sending my documents back with a REJECT stamped, they called me up asked me fax documents to them and even asked for signed declarations to be faxed rather than couriered in. Anyway, they just told me that my Visa is sitting in the stack to be sent via BlueDart today evening.

Anyway, my visa is there, but not here yet. I have a visa, but I still don't know if I'm travelling. I won't know till the pretty cover arrives at office tomorrow, sometime after lunch. *If* it comes.

Otherwise, I'm just a poor and depressed guy in Bangalore.

posted at: 16:10 | path: /travels | permalink | Tags: ,

Wed, 18 Jan 2006:

Since all other text editors suck (emacs is good for a scheduler application or as a visual shell, but its editing leaves much to be desired), radekp decided to find a way to embed VIM into a windows.forms application. And to my astonishment (well, yeah), he managed to get it working.

Quite amazing things people do with simple tools.

It's difficult to see the picture when you are inside the frame.

posted at: 13:44 | path: /hacks | permalink | Tags: ,

Just got back from Trivadrum, today morning. Nice trip - collected my tickets, got them marked as asian vegetarian, met the parents and in general had a good time. Did not get enough time to go around to my college - I want to visit it and see what all has passed by there in the last year. I hear that they have a new building for the computer science department.

I broke my camera while in Trivandrum. I happened to sit on the camera while it was packed inside bubble wrap and lying on a sofa. Apparently, with somebody as thin as I am - there's a lot more pressure per square inch. The LCD has cracked, need to see if GK Vale or someone else in Bangalore can get it repaired. Otherwise it is nearly 23k INR wasted.

There's no future in time travel.

posted at: 12:11 | path: /travels | permalink | Tags: ,

Fri, 13 Jan 2006:

Today's Friday the 13th. Got a call from the NZ embassy asking for more documents, how lucky that I got it today instead of getting it on monday when I'll be in Trivandrum. Got them ready, faxed it to Delhi and sitting with fingers crossed. Hopefully I've got all the documents required to get a NZ visa to visit Linux.Conf.Au 2006.

Elvis would weigh 13 pounds on Pluto.

posted at: 17:40 | path: /me | permalink | Tags: ,

Thu, 12 Jan 2006:

It all started with sabiokap, a coffe mug and a matchbox. But it started going over the top once everyone realized that it was in fact possible to enjoy doing the silliest things around. And thus the Saga of Matchpot starts. The game has literally taken over due to the absolute silliness and of course the skill required to actually play the game.

For those who think we are crazy, here is one masterly stroke. If you can't take pleasure in such simple achievements of mankind, pity the future of such a race that includes a hard head such as you. Cherish your curiousity and innocence lest you end up with no romance or soul.

huge image

It was created from a MJPEG capture from my camera, which was split into multiple frames using avidemux2 and recombined into one XCF using a gimp script - frame2anim.py. The active portion of code looks as below.

  filename = (basedir + "/" + format) % i
  frame_img = pdb.gimp_file_load(filename, filename) 
  drawable = pdb.gimp_image_get_active_drawable(frame_img)
  layer = pdb.gimp_layer_new_from_drawable(drawable, newimg)
  pdb.gimp_image_add_layer(newimg, layer, -1)

After it became a gimp XCF file, it was easy to trim out the surroundings and remove intermediate frames to reduce the size of the image from 4.1 MB to 600kb.

Ego sum ens omnipotens.

posted at: 16:10 | path: /yblr | permalink | Tags: , ,

Those who meet me, mistake me for a nice guy. Of course, I am a good guy by nature - but I can be evil by choice. I don't believe in religion, but I believe in the essential justice. In spite of what you might think, justice is still a human concept. But for a universe that came out of nothing, it has to all add up to zero sometime (though the discussion about the end of days as such is discouraged). So in a moment of emotion, I decided to be fair to this world. More particularly I decided to be fair to this world induvidually. The decision sprang from the first moment in this century when I lost my temper. The decision to never again sleep in the home of my ancestors was one of the riders of the same moment. The resolutions stand as made.

There are instances when I'm not fair to someone. Distinction must be made between the moments of rage from the cold decisions. Anger has no rationale and I haven't lost my temper since 2001. But still I've been unfair to a lot of people - from the cold comfort of sanity. There have been times and places where my job was to snub and pour cold water.

It is my right. If somebody is headed towards a difficult situation by mistake, I often consider it my right to hurt the person before the world acquires a right. It is as much of my right as it was the right of my elders who snatched knives from my hand when I was a kid. I can't claim to have made the same mistakes - I didn't drink, I didn't smoke, I didn't stay out with friends till midnight without a ride back, I didn't end up in strange cities without a hotel booking. I haven't done any of that, which to some people removes all right I have to advise them. I am sure they'd have said But, you had your fun when you were my age. Why don't you let us ? if I had taken a sip or a puff.

In a fair world, intentions do not matter. What I do out of perfectly good intentions is still hurting someone. It is only perfectly fair that I get hurt in the process. For example, my sister has probably forgiven me for not letting her go to Delhi last year. She has probably forgotten all that she said to me on the phone. I haven't. I got what I deserved for crushing her first few attempts at breaking out of parental control. Hearing "you are only saying that because I'm a girl. " or "why are you taking their side on this ?" isn't pleasant with a girl who can pronounce words in italics. She will probably admit that I was right if I ask her today but kaye vitta ayudhavum, vaay vitta vaakum ... (translation won't do).

They say that we hurt those whom we love, but little do they know that we can only be hurt by those ...

Justice? Who asks for justice. We make our own justice. We make it here on Arrakis -- win or die. Let us not rail about justice as long as we have arms and the freedom to use them.
                            -- Leto I

posted at: 12:12 | path: /philosophy | permalink | Tags: ,

Tue, 10 Jan 2006:

A couple of days back, I had posted a puzzle on my flickr.com account. It dealt with a simple capture from a video - as shown below.

What happens next ?

Since nobody could really guess what happened, I thought I'd publish the answer. Here's the video in divx with sound. Before anyone starts making fun of premshree, I'd like to say that I lost to him with him today morning - twice. He has the sort of talent which makes pool a truly spectator sport, something a straight laced player like me can't copy. He's got his heart in the right place after all.

This office gets really interesting after midnight.

It is better to be a spectacular failure than a dismal success.
          -- Venture Capitalists 101

posted at: 12:20 | path: /yblr | permalink | Tags: , ,

I had these in mind for a while now. The reason I'm publishing this today is because I realized that I don't have the self discipline to stick to them if nobody else knows.

  • Gain 5 kgs
  • Eat more than one meal per day
  • Do not stay up beyond 2 AM on weekdays
  • Cut down to 5 cups of coffee per day
  • Fight my travelphobia and travel more
  • stay away from my PC if I am not working

These are very simple things to do in reality. But look at what happened this weekend. I stayed up till 3 on saturday night hacking kio_daap, got hyper on coffee and started going crazy. My last proper meal was on sunday night, when I ate at bluesmoon's house - all I've had to eat after that are two apples and four sandwiches. Nothing I've done could be even remotely called work, all last week.

What are the odds ? What are the odds ? ...

If we truly knew what we were here for, we probably wouldn't be.

posted at: 12:11 | path: /me | permalink | Tags: ,

Fri, 06 Jan 2006:

Yesterday, Venuchettan passed away. He walked into a hospital to get treated for a stomach pain and quite unexpectedly met his end with a heart attack while his stomach was being pumped. I cannot imagine someone disappearing out of this world just like that. We all lost a bit of ourselves with him. It just won't be the same to go to that house - with two people whose permanence I'd taken for granted. People don't just die. Please tell me that they don't. Please !

I wasn't prepared for it the first time someone close died, I am not prepared now. And I will probably never be.

There is no cure for birth and death other than to enjoy the interval.

posted at: 00:54 | path: /me | permalink | Tags: ,

Tue, 03 Jan 2006:

I've been hacking on some random code recently. Because most of the regular stuff has become boring and uninteresting. Here is another one of those small, yet cool snippet of code from my ~/hacks.

gdk_window_set_decorations(GDK_WINDOW(widget->window) , 0);

                                  mask, 0, 0);

The above code sets a mask on a window. This is the way to build skinnable interfaces which allow transparent windows. Working on some skunkworks which needs to display shaped windows.

You can get the code from here. There might be better ways to do this, but this one works.

Man must shape his tools lest they shape him.
               -- Arthur R. Miller

posted at: 19:44 | path: /hacks | permalink | Tags: ,

Mon, 02 Jan 2006:

Actually, it happened before 2006 dawned. I was too busy to sit down and write about it. But it is official folks, the first peice of C# code has been run using the libjit x86 JIT. Here is the announcement.

If you would like to help out dotgnu - by talking about it, by testing it - any way you can, contact me (t3rmin4t0r on #dotgnu!irc.freenode.net). I really need someone who can fix up the XML parts of dotgnu. So if you want to help, be sure to talk me to me. Or talk to _Simon, he'll probably tell you what all bugs that I am slacking on.

All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
          -- J.S Bach

posted at: 21:10 | path: /dotgnu | permalink | Tags: , ,

After much deliberation over What do you on New Year's Eve, finally decided to crash at spo0nman's place. The events that followed are as follows.

4:20 PM, My house: Call from sabiokap, asking me to come quickly. I head over there and find that I am needed to watch the Rajma while the other two head out to shop for meat and drinks. And of course, they both leave their laptops in my custody :)

Actually, sabiokap can cook. Unlike your truly, whose talents begin and end with making instant noodles (and coffee). My role was restricted to peeling and masala duty after the rajma was done. teemus was more of an observer, except for the garlic peeling

The food ended up being surprisingly good. Or maybe it was because I hadn't had anything to eat since friday night. But whatever, the food was simple, well cooked and I ate a lot (which is definitely the test of good food).

After the cooking was done, we settled into the main room with laptops. We got into playing music and of course it isn't a party till we play bad seventies pop. With teemus leading with Mickey and all that. Not to forget the smokes and drinks too.

Then chilled out and tried to watch a movie. It turned out to be a mushy romance - so we ended up watching Madagascar instead. Oh, and we made some awesome black coffee. I drank about a litre of coffee that night (which I regret now). I was laughing my head off listening to I want to move it, move it.

The actual new year was spent on the freezing roof (with the cold wind from the lake), watching the fireworks going off all around the city.

We had way more fun because we left all the plates unwashed till the next year (and when I left the house on sunday evening, they were still unwashed). 2006 looks quite an interesting year to me ... Full of pizza, wi-fi and friends.

Then I headed back home - only to reach home after a 3 hour walk, after getting lost in Jayanagar, going round Lal Bagh the wrong way from west gate. Anyway, the year looks quite promising - quite promising indeed.

n00b: Where do you keep your backups ?
h4x0r: Oh, in my home directory on your box.

posted at: 18:16 | path: /parties | permalink | Tags: ,

Sun, 01 Jan 2006:

A very happy new year to all. Writing this from a party (with WiFi - OMG). Life' going to be a lot different in 2006. Look a hour 1 for instance :)

Bye bye 2005, it's been fun (and a lot of pain) - but time for new beginnings.

Actually, lIfe's just going to be the same - and that's a relief. isn't it ?

posted at: 00:22 | path: /misc | permalink | Tags: ,