Seriously! What is it with these soaps? Stories that crawl along at a pace that would shame a snail on Prozac, terrible acting, laughable sets and the weirdest videography and sound effects that wouldn't be out of place in the grand lightsaber duel between Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker! Can't you just imagine the whole lot of them; producer, director, the cast, the sound effects guy and the cameraman, all conferring about the day's episode?

"Right, so I've thought of a new direction that this episode is going to take the show. Those hour-long traffic jams really give my creativity a boost! I got today's story done in 10 minutes! Unfortunately, the material is worth that much airtime too. So, once again, lets fill up, let see, another 15, with inane dialogue that is offensive to the even the mildly rational, preachy, patronizing and, oh just so incongruous in today's world. How are we for glycerine? Because all the talk will bore the audience. Lots of weeping is the key to grabbing eyeballs and TRPs.

About 20 minutes would be advertisements. And let's have another 10 minutes of insane, roller-coaster-ride-like camera movements with lots and lots of zooming in and out; something that seems like we've let a drunken monkey loose with the camera on the deck of a boat in stormy seas. I want lots of rolling and pitching; I think it looks artsy. Don't you?

And of course we overlay that with those new synth-sounds we've been waiting to try out. We know that our major demographic is middle-aged housewives who have been found to have a low probability of having watched any science-fiction movies at all so they won't realize that our sound effects are a rip-off the latest space movie's epic war battle scene!

Oh, and let's not forget that we treat our audiences like a bunch of brain damaged retards and so let’s start with the usual 10 minute recap of the last episode's 10 minute story at beginning. We'll end with a climatic cliffhanger that'll keep the suspense till the next episode. All this stretching's got us at least 5 minutes over time so we can quickly end with no credits but just a splash screen of the production house, so that it looks like we had really great story that left us with no time for anything else! Alright! We're all set! Go team! Let's have another great shoot!"



My favorite colours are blue, grey and black. But wait! Black isn't actually a colour now, is it? It's more like, the absence of any colour! If a body absorbs all colours falling on it and doesn't reflect any, then it's perfectly black. In fact, in physics, a black body doesn't reflect any radiation falling on it, visible or otherwise.

On the other end of the spectrum ( pardon the pun :D ) is white. White isn't a colour either. It is the complete opposite of black ( like you didn't already know that! ); it is the equal presence of all colours.

So the next time someone mentions that black ( or white ) is their favorite, you can sniff, turn your nose up in the air, look at them disdainfully and say, 'Well! That's not even a colour!"

Traffic Jams

There's work being done in Noida on flyovers and the Delhi Metro. And I it's going to help the traffic situation and the lessen the burden on our overcrowded roads ( if you want to call some of them that! ) but right now, it's only making it worse. Much, much worse.

My office is only about 6 kilometers away from home. It usually takes me 15 minutes; 10 on a good day. But today, it took me half an hour. And I travel by bike. That makes it possible for me to snake through the jam and ride on the shoulder of the road. Imagine the plight of four-wheeler drivers! Though, to be fair, they do have air conditioning!

The road that I take to work is, for the most part, in pretty good condition. There are two bottlenecks though. One, a crossing that is major in importance, but minor in road width. But it's just about manageable. But now, with the Delhi Metro coming here, they've encroached on about a quarter of the road. That takes away the buffer that we had and it's now perpetually jammed. Add to this the insanely long waiting times at almost all crossing and you'd understand why road-rage is on the rise.

The second bottleneck is the construction of a flyover. I can't begin describing why it's so messy and chaotic. The road handles most traffic between Noida and Delhi and also Greater Noida. Because of the construction there are detours all around and the roads that have been put to use for them are really narrow. So they too are perpetually jammed. And to top it off, today they closed off another turning that provided some respite at the crossing. It really doesn't make sense; the turning wasn't that close to the crossing so it didn't cause some idiot looking for a shortcut to cause a traffic snarl; and the traffic passing it is pretty light anyway so they could have easily managed to let all vehicles that wanted to go that way, pass. But no! They want to force everyone to the crossing so that everyone can enjoy the pain of a gridlock. Why must they ( the faceless, and apparently brainless, powers-that-be ) do things in such a senseless way? You'd think they lacked a basic understanding of how drivers work. Or perhaps they've never really driven a vehicle through one of these situations.

It's not completely their fault though. Most of the cars I see have just one person in them. Huge, hulking SUVs taking half the road's width with just one person. That is simply dumb. Jakarta has a solution to this though; it has a three-in-one rule which states that a car must have at least 3 passengers when traveling through the restricted zone. Pretty clever. Except that people are smarter. So now you have unemployed youth waiting at the start of the zone who will happily help you increase the occupancy of your vehicle. For a small fee of course. You get to drive through that area and they get paid. Everyone's happy!

Nigeria had another solution to their traffic problem in Lagos. On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, only cars that had registration numbers starting with an odd number could use the roads. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, it was the turn of the even numbers. Again, pretty ingenious, you'd think. Well, Lagos had a booming oil economy and that allowed people to buy second cars so that they had cars for both days! How do you like that?

London's got a hi-tech solution to this problem. They charge people who enter the congested zones a fee. The cars are photographed using cameras and software identifies the license plates and the motorists are charged once during the day, no matter how many times they enter or how long they stay.

India will probably not have anyway out of it's mess for a very long time since there is no way that either the people or the enforcers will go that extra mile to make sure that the rules are not broken. We'll probably just end up going the Jakarta or Lagos way and cheat our way out!



I'm really into downloading stuff using torrents and Mininova is where I get most of my torrents from. It's a pretty well maintained site with a simple clean interface.

Originally, when I was told to visit Mininova for torrents, I went to Except that was a scam site. Some guy was asking people for $100 to use, the actual site!

Anyway, a few days ago, they were able to win a court case ( you can read more about it here ) and acquired the domain name as well. So now if you visit, you'll be redirected to Do visit it, it's good.

And if you don't find what you're looking for there, try It's not a site for torrents but rather, a search engine. It searches quite a few sites, including Mininova, Meganova, TorrentSpy, Snarf-It to name a few.

Happy downloading!

What's This Life For?

I've been feeling...a feeling. I can't define it. It just is there. In part, it is a sense of lack of purpose; a lack of ambition and goal, at least any conceivably achievable ones. There is no drive and no will to continue like this.

I've read so many places about Life's tenacity and it's uncompromising instinct to go on. But to what end? What is the reason for Life to exist? What is the object of it's 'being'? Isn't it pointless, at least for individuals, to fight for survival for the ephemeral time they spend alive? What do they achieve? The satisfaction of a life well-lived? And what defines if you've lived well? Culture? What good is culture in the grave? In fact, what good is culture when all you do in life is suffer? How can you appreciate anything if all you ever do is struggle to survive?

Why all the suffering that one has to go through? A lesson that life teaches you? In preparation for what? More suffering? And with what we're doing to our planet with our accomplishments and technological progress, it doesn't really seem worthwhile to continue or even consider producing progeny to come into a world of chaos, hunger, strife and war; because that is what I see the world heading towards. There will be no water, not enough food, inhospitable climes, lawlessness and anarchy; the scenario of so many movies and books that take a look at the future.

In the vastness of The Universe and Everything, Life really doesn't seem to hold much promise.

Picasa Web Albums

I downloaded Google's Picasa the other day, and although I did have some initial misgivings about yet another photo-organizer, I have to admit, it is pretty slick! Very nice interface, cool GUI effects and pretty decent image manipulation features. Some pretty snazzy effects too. I don't think I'll be using it too often, I prefer to manage these things manually in Windows Explorer, but I did spend some time fooling around with it.

I signed up for a Picasa Web Albums account and then spent a day fiddling around with Picasa and Adobe Photoshop to get some pretty decent finals of some random photos I had lying around. Take a look at my public gallery and let me know what you think.