18 April 2007

Reassurance and State of Mind

Am I correct? Am I doing it right? How many times have we not asked ourselves such questions? What did we rely on, to be confident about we being right? Didn't some one else needed to tell us that we were fine? Did that reassuance help us a lot? If we think that was hepful, should expect that the scoiety has this responsibility to reassuare its members to give them confidence? Is't this role of scoeity a much needed part in keeping its members civilised and sane?

~rAGU
On Virginia University Shoot out

15 April 2007

Qute Little BeOS

BeOS is dead. It used to sit on my desk along with Linux and QNX a few years ago I think in 2000 to be precise. I am dissapointed. I was confident that something smart would emerge and that it would be better than Windows.

Windows got bulkier and now takes 13 Gigs on disk. The great Mango Inc (I mean Apple) is not any better. I overheard some one saying house wives like Mac OS. When all these happened much promised Linux branched. Now I do not know how many flavours it comes in and I am sorry I am not young enough to try all of them. And lo BeOS is dead. I used it to recover files when my RED HOT (was it RedHat?) linux melted and ext2 was accesible via BeOS. It was small and beautiful. I would marry her if it was a girl :)

Much to my relief and much more to the relief of the whole world, sense previles. Some people are still sane and realise that OS should be slim and beautiful (Like a bride?). Haiku is being developed. I pin much hope on the immediate relative of my old friend BeOS.
I want to wake up everyday without having to worry about OS on my machine. I am going to give Haiku all my diskspace and time on my processor. My heart will wait this summer to see if Haiku was worth a crush.

~rAGU

14 April 2007

Nationalism

It will not be defined here. I am only trying to express my Point of View (PoV) about nationalism.

Nationalism should be purely conditional. Believing that nation is a group of people sharing some common interests, the conditions that I would lay out are

a) My nationalistic thought and action should be in the interest of the nation without bias towards some of its section (of people).
b) It should not violate fundamental tenets of humanism.

First one is obvious. Second one needs some explanation. It basically means that my thoughts and actions should not cause troubles to anything (read anybody).

By keeping nationalism conditional I can be sure that it will remain a positive emotion always. It is worth mentioning that nationalism arises not from the ideological standpoint but out of profound ignorance of it and mostly arises out of selfishness. A selfishness that gives me (and you) an identity. I am sure there are other things. All such things I can remember look selfish to me.

How many of us know what the ideological standpoint of our nation is? (Or is there such a thing?). Even if we do how sure are we about its worthiness? In any case, the notion of 'our' and 'other' (say our people-other people) changes and any emotion rising out of such a changing categorisation does not deserve an unconditional support.

~rAGU

12 April 2007

University of Dusseldorf

I do not know how good the University of Dusseldorf is. But I know how it looks! It is a nice place situated outside the Western German city of Dusseldorf. I went there to write TOEFL. My English was finally to be put to test after 12 years of study and 4 years of use in my life in India and abroad. I lived in Leuven Belgium then and Dusseldorf was the closest place I could write the exam.

I reached there early morning taking the Euroline bus from Brussels. I must tell you here that I started previous night from Brussels. The reason I tell you this is because of an incident. I asked a driver whether he was going to Dusseldorf. He had replied "We are going to London Sir..". Wow he was really proud to go to London(every night ? :) ).

That aside I looked for Hauptbahnhof (Central Railway Station) (such a complicated name?) and found one at my back after asking two guys! These stations have room heaters you see. Well I ventured out after familiarising the surroundings. I had to find a hostel to sleep that night after TOEFL exam. I asked the receptionist at the hostel after finding one, "Are you from China?". He was unimpressed. He said I am from Japan. I giggled saying It is hard to distinguish you see.. heeh heee. He showed me the room.

I try to be early to appointments and end up reaching the place several hours early. It was not so easy to find the department in the University. I asked a guy for direction he spoke for a while and ran out of English. I wish I knew German. Found the place nevertheless. But most interesting thing happed on the city Train. I asked a young German to help me buy the train ticket. I did not know which ticket to buy because it was based on distance circles rather than on stations. Flocked with two girls on his sides. HE SPOKE TO ME IN ENGLISH. Yes he did. I said thank you. Then the girls started asking him (in German of course) "when did you learn English?". This proud young man spent next several minutes explaining his English scholarship. It was amusing to both watch and hear.

To be continued...... I will come back about the exam and why I had to come back again...!


11 April 2007

Continuation Demystified

Many claim on the Internet that they have simple and intutive explanation for the concept of continuation: a programming language concept in Computer Science. (get off you non-cs guys).
But they don`t. They show off that they are smarter by using niche words and phrases. I am a dumb guy, so let us understand it step by step slowly like all bone heads like me do. (Let us get together later to curse them for all the non intutive explanation they offer)

Functions retrun values. Well atleast in C yes they do. Let us look at the following code:

void add(long a, long b)
{
return (a+b);
}


Let us call it from another function:

void callAdd()
{
long result = add(1,2);
printf("%d", result);
return;
}

Sweet. Now what? Now let us answer a question. Why do we have to return a value frm add? What if we call another function with the result of add as the argument?

So:

void add(long a, long b)
{
printResult(a+b);
}

Let us write the new function:

void printResult(int result)
{
printf("%d", result);
return;
}

Let us now change the defnition of callAdd()

void callAdd()
{
add(1,2);
return;
}

Thus printResult() is now the computation remaining after addtion is performed and add calls it and add does not return the result. Okie we are close.

What if we tell add() which function to call and send result to, as part of its argument?

void add(long a, long b, printResult)
{
printResult(a+b);
}

So callAdd() becomes... (let us forget function pointers for a while and assume this works)

void callAdd(printResult)
{
add(1,2,printResult);
return;
}

To be continued............

10 April 2007

Truth is Sweet

Haven`t we heard many times that truth is bitter? Not always (sometimes it is). Stright talks which often come in different flavours truth being one of the flavours, is a great tool and a style.

~rAGU

04 April 2007

Syllabic Script for English

Not a bad idea. You do not have to spell your name on the telephone. Languages in India have this unique advantage of being unambigious. English being an international language badly needs a syllabic script that is not hard to learn.




Kids should be taught both Latin and syllabic scripts so that when writing nouns (atleast) we can use unabigious script.




My idea is to add Kannada consonant and vowel extensions to latin script. See the image to the left..


Explanation will follow :) Vey crude idea not a new one I figured out fast!


What is Obvious?

To an intutive mind, many things are obvious. But people who work on details to arrive at a decision sometimes look for details even to make trivial decisions. Many smart indivduals I have seen in academics seemed to be detail oriented people.

However I have come across situations where detail guys made a discovery and anonoused it and then intutive guys complained, "this so obvious it is not even worth mentioning and you say that this is an invention? huh.

It happens. So, when things are obvious we should realise that it may not be obvious to all. Hence obvious things need to be clearly mentioned. Yes at the other hand, so called conclusion after a detailed analysis could sometime be just ordinary.


~rAGU

02 April 2007

Evolution of Ideas

Existence is a proof of requirement. People who believe in evolution might agree with me. I am taking this thought to another level. This I think is what I term one of the profound thoughts I have had in a long time. I term things of all kind, "entities" (Idea, dynamics, physical object all included).


My opinion is that concepts or ideas evolve over time like biological entities. Everything to me, the matter, an animal, an idea, all are at some stage of evolution. If they exist they are needed. They are needed for improvement of certain entities.
(I had previously put it this way: needed for some good action. Dr Srikanth asked me: what is good? Isn’t that a relative term? I changed the wording. He is right. So improvement is the better word.)

However there is a chance that the same entity might play part in the decline of some other entity. Thus, as the word exists, it is at least hard to achieve mutual exclusivity. It is not like tossing a coin. Entities can be partly head and partly tails. That is to say, existence of something can not guarantee that it will not play part in decline. That is the cause of all ills.

If we take an example of a concept like extremism, I see that extremism is a much need entity in say bringing change. But it plays part in oppressing legitimate ideas say in religious extremism. Sexual attraction between men and women is another example (improvement?). Mother might get attracted to her own child (decline?).

Thus everything exists to result in improvement but the part it plays in decline shows up as the problems that we see in the world. It does not stop there I see a recursion; new problems emerge for improvement, again with side effects. This goes on and I do not see a reason for convergence! Entities evolve ... things change....anything beyond is out of my comprehension...

If you thought beyond this pass on the idea... that should be thrilling.......


~rAGU