The recent few days have been totally exhausting and demoralising. Too much has happened in too little time. I got my long-awaited and long-craved, albeit expensive,laptop of my dreams. I have had too much of work to do but have been unable to do anything meaningfully. The way I’m treated by the people, the troubles that the situations, unexpected and shocking happenings give, have left me in an emotional storm. A few dreams have been realised, a few cruelly crushed, giving no emotional relaxation. Also my inability to do anything meaningful due to a variety of reasons, relationships turning slightly sour too often continue to drive me mad.

The arrival of my laptop was supposed to be a release from most of my troubles but instead i’ve scarcely had time to use it. My health has also started to play spoilsport almost everyday making daily life worse than Hell probably. 🙁 I hope things will change for better!

My parents have bought me a laptop, my dream. I have no words to express my feeling of ecstasy. I think that the arrival of the laptop will solve a lot of my problems. Configuration-wise it is a power-packed laptop and I would be able to play the latest and my favorite games without any worries. Of course, I’d be able to do some academic and extra-academic comfortably with my laptop. Here’s its configuration:

Processor type Intel® Centrino® Duo processor technology
• Intel® Core™2 Duo processor T7250
• 2.0 GHz , 2 MB L2 Cache, 800 MHz FSB
• Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection
Operating system installed Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium
Standard memory 2048 MB
Memory type DDR2 667MHz
Memory layout (2 x 1024 MB)
Maximum memory Supports up to 4GB DDR2 memory (Dual Channel Memory Support; For 4 GB memory configuration, up to 1 GB may not be available with 32-bit operating systems due to system resource requirements)
Internal drives
Internal hard disk drive 250 GB
Hard disk controller SATA Hard Disk Drive
Hard disk drive speed 5400 rpm
Optical drive type LightScribe SuperMulti 8X DVD±RW with Double Layer Support
System features
Memory card device 5-in-1 integrated Digital Media Reader for Secure Digital cards, MultiMedia cards, Memory Stick, Memory Stick Pro, or xD Picture cards
Modem High speed 56K modem
Network interface Integrated 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet LAN
Wireless technologies Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection
Wireless capability Bluetooth® wireless networking
External I/O ports 3 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI, 1 VGA, 1 RJ11, 1 RJ45, TV-Out (S-video), Expansion Port 3, 2 Headphones out, 1 Microphone in, 1 IEEE 1394 Firewire, Consumer IR, AC Adapter, integrated Fingerprint reader
Video capture interface IEEE 1394 FireWire® Interface
Expansion slots One ExpressCard/54 slot (also supports ExpressCard/34)
Display size 17″ WXGA+ High Definition BrightView Widescreen
Display resolution 1440 x 900
Video adapter NVIDIA® GeForce™ 8600M GS
Video RAM up to 1279MB total graphics memory with 512MB dedicated
Speakers and microphone Altec Lansing® speakers
Keyboard Notebook keyboard with scroll bar and integrated numeric keypad
Pointing device Touch Pad with On/Off button and dedicated vertical Scroll Up/Down pad, volume control, mute buttons, 2 Quick Launch Buttons
Power supply type 90 W AC Power Adapter
Webcam HP Pavilion WebCam with Integrated Microphone
Dimensions / weight / warranty
Weight 3.55 kg (7.8 lbs)
Dimensions (W x D x H) 28.50 cm (L) x 39.60 cm (W) x 3.16 cm (min) H / 4.18 cm (max) H
Package dimensions (W x D x H) 480 x 170 x 350 mm
Warranty statement 1 year, parts and labour

For the past few days, I realise of the existence of an invisible threshold circle around everyone of us. It defines the boundary of what we can do normally and what we cannot. It is there for good things and bad things as well. A big herculean effort or hi-octane inspiration is needed to break through the threshold and do something meaningful. More and more we delay making the efforts to break through, the circle keeps closing in and at one point starts choking us that even the normal day-to-day activities seem a big ask. The negative part of the threshold is very smart and shrinks in a certain areas and elongates in a certain areas thereby bringing badder things into our capability zone.

Its just similar to earth’s gravity. It keeps us grounded and similarly the threshold keeps us from bad things. A lot of force is required for breaking through the threshold for bad actions as well. But as it inhibits good actions and development, it must be enslaved. The power of a rocket or a space shuttle is needed to break free of the earth’s gravity. Similarly extremely powerful force is needed to break through the barrier, which when done leads to great things.

I’m getting to face a lot of undesirable things due to my threshold circle closing in. I have had the desire and interest to learn a lot of things like Cryptography, Python, Web design, CSS, PHP, JavaScript, Linux and more. But in each of these, I get stuck at the threshold level. It could be because of lack sustained focus, inspiration but also a lot of other factors have contributed to it. A bit of guidance and help, or maybe even spoonfeeding till there is reasonable familiarity with these stuff, from learned persons can always be the clinching factor. Also lonely efforts are more difficult and difficult to sustain. The company of like-minded persons will surely do wonders, but the key is in finding the right company.

I realise that once the threshold starts shrinking, it grows powerful and is more difficult to break. Often breaching the threshold turns out to be the difference between achievers who take it all and the triers. Here the will power to keep going on and on, unperturbed by obstacles and difficulties, is very much essential as is patience. Development takes its own time and never happens in an eyeblink. It is almost impossible for most of us to accept such an obvious truth. Many people like me have spurts of inspiration and the will to do things and hence are easily disappointed if things do not happen within the duration of the spurts. Such things usually take a lot out of me and cause huge disappointments which take quite some time to heal. The key here is ‘sustained focus’ and oodles of ‘patience’.

Let me pray for people including me to realise that there is a great world outside the good threshold where sky is the limit!

The one month holiday and the fortnight after it was spent in suffering and recovering from Jaundice. Though Jaundice hadn’t fully gone off, I decided to return to college after Pongal holidays and the doctor gave me clearance. But the flipside of coming to Madurai, staying at hostel and attending the college is that with the severe food restrictions imposed, what I can eat and what is being served in the hostel mess never ever overlap. So I’m restricted to eating my favourite curd rice for lunch and dinner and whatever is served for breakfast(Curd rice will not be served for breakfast 🙁 ). It includes eating the restricted food stuff. I fear something very bad will happen to my health due to it. I’m too lazy and have loads of works often that I cannot find time to go out and eat Idlis in the hotel for breakfast 🙁

The first few days of my return included 4 hectic working days(Saturday and Sunday included). I had virtually no time to breath lest cope with the missed lessons. Then there was the first internal test which came and went in a jiffy and I wrote all my exams without conviction and of course without any sort of preparation. Hence very poor marks can be expected, good marks should be a shock! 🙂

I also decided against going home for the weekend so that I could stay in hostel, relax, enjoy with my laziness and of course do some reading and catching up. In the midst of all these I will have to visit my Diabetologist, update him on my health condition and get his advice and opinions. Praying for progress in my health!

The college reopened on 19 November and I entered into my 4th semester classes. All the subjects are very important and interesting, form the core of Computer Science Engineering course. The teachers are uninspiring and discouraging and they made me realise that self-learning is the way to go. The results were out and I scored 9.42 GPA to placed within the top few. Abhilaash topped with 9.77 and there were few others who scored more than me. I must shamelessly confess that scoring top marks has been long off my priorities and it has no meaning or worth to me anymore. Scoring good enough marks consistently is satisfactory for me. Gaining precious knowledge is far more important to me than anything else and marks never reveal a student’s knowledge! :-(. Knowledge is power! 🙂

I am into TCENet development work and am going to work for the ‘Internals module revamp’ and many of my friends are also into modules. I am extremely glad about it! 🙂

My 19th birthday on November 17 was a happy and memorable one. I watched ‘Azhagiya Tamizhmagan’ with my cousin on that day. Quite a day!

The remaining few working days of the third semester passed without any eventful events and my bunking classes  🙂 . The final internal test dragged on and on to finish slowly. Semester exams were ok without any problems. The saving grace was the holidays i had in between when i was able to enjoy at home. I blitzed the practical exams much to my pleasant shock and surprise. The college reopened on November 19 after a few days of holidays. 🙁

On 26 September 2007, a Sun workshop was organised by the Sun Club of TCE. I alongwith a few second year friends from my department attended the daylong workshop. Third years from CSE and IT departments also attended the workshop in which seminars/demo/lectures were given by final year CSE students.

First we started with Grid computing and Sun Grid Engine which was presented by Shridhar. Then Balachandran and Nachiappan presented DTrace and DScripts with demos. After this session we had a teabreak and when we returned, we had a session on NetBeans IDE for developing J2EE applications presented by Narayanan.Subramanian and Pradeep with valuable inputs from Agalya. But I found this session very vague and laborious as I was not familiar with enterprise applications and advanced Java programming.

Then we had a session in the evening, during which Krithika presented Zones in Solaris OS which was a novel and a great technology. Then we continued with NetBeans and EE applications, In the end, Subramaniam presented a small demo on J2ME programming using NetBeans which was really cool. In the end we were presented with Belenix cds and Sun pens as souvenirs. Then we left with the satisfaction of attended a great workshop.

(All the persons named in this post are my seniors doing their final years and my due respect to them. Apologies for not suffixing akkas and annas as doing it is laborious.)

Here is the link to the photographs taken during the workshop by Krithika.Photo Gallery

India vs Pakistan Twenty20 World Cup final was the unexpected thing to happen in the T20 World Cup. Both sides had very little experience in this shortest form of cricket and had crashed out of this year’s ODI World Cup in the very first round. But what an excellent cricket these teams have played to reach this far. A millions of applauses!

In the final, India won the toss and as expected, chose to bat first. Their innings was sedate as they kept losing wickets regularly. Gautam Gambhir held one end up and scored his 3rd consecutive 50 of the tournament.In the process, he became the second highest run-getter in the tournament. Towards the end, young Rohit Sharma’s pyrotechnics ensured that India reached 157, a total they had fighting chance to defend.

Pakistan’s chase began with fireworks from Imran Nazir but wickets were lost regularly at the other end. When Imran Nazir was run-out by Robin Uthappa the match was starting to tilt in India’s favour. Shahid Afridi lasted a ball and departed with score at 77 of 11.2 overs. At this point, Indians believed that they had the game in their hands as the asking rate was climbing steeply.But Misbah-ul-Haq, the man in form combined with Sohail Tanveer to clobber 5 sixes in two overs bowled by Harbhajan and Sreesanth to reduce the asking rate drastically. Indians then fought back by dismissing 9 Pakistani batsman for 141.Pakistan needed 13 runs off the last over with the dangerman Misbah on strike.

Dhoni, surprisingly again, chose to bowl the previous match hero Joginder Sharma instead of the experienced Harbhajan. When he started with a wide, Indian fans groaned, and the situation became even more desperate when Misbah pummelled a full toss miles over long-off for six. But with victory in his grasp, his judgement failed him. Moving across his stumps, he went for the scoop down to fine leg. He didn’t connect cleanly, and millions on the subcontinent held their breath as Sreesanth came under the ball at short fine leg. When he held it, the stadium erupted. India had won the T20 World Cup and the world was at their feet. Misbah, meanwhile, collapsed to the ground ruing his judgement to play the scoop shot over fine leg.

Poor Misbah-ul-Haq found himself facing the fire once again in an India-Pakistan match. Like their last encounter, he kept Pakistan in the match by playing intelligently and picking the right balls to hit. A huge six in the last over, which started with Pakistan needing 13, seemed to swing the match decisively in their favour. Then, with only one wicket in hand and fine leg in the circle, Misbah went for that scoop which, not for the first time, ended in tears for the batsman. Sreesanth would have never taken a more important catch in his life. But for Misbah, who has been Pakistan’s surprise star of the tournament, it will take some forgetting!

Indians did a victory lap in the stadium with the Indian flag and there was absolute euphoria all around.The noise was deafening in a packed stadium and even though the Indians outnumbered the Pakistanis by some distance, the shouting match was almost even. The battle cry was similar: every Jeetega bhai Jeetega, India Jeetega (roughly translated to “Brother, India will win) was followed by Jeetega bhai Jeetega, Pakistan Jeetega. But the man who almost stole the applause from the cricketers was Shah Rukh Khan, the Indian film superstar equally adored in Pakistan. Shah Rukh, a self-confessed cricket fan, recently starred as a hockey coach in the hit film Chak De India. He was last seen on a cricket ground in England during the Indian tour, and was now seen standing next to Lalit Modi, the BCCI vice-president, deliriously cheering every Pakistani wicket. When his face was flashed on the giant screen, the crowd went even more delirious.

Irfan Pathan won a deserving Man-of-the-match award while Shahid Afridi was named the Player-of-the-tourament. Lets hope that this great Indian victory spurs a new revolution in the Indian cricket and the Indian team become a group of world-beaters. Chak diya India!!misbahscoop.jpgvictory.jpgt20trophy.jpgchamps.jpg

Fresh from the Yuvraj blitzkrieg against England, India faced a must-win game against South Africa to qualify for the Twenty20 World Cup semifinals. India scored 153 in their 20 overs despite some early setbacks. The star of the Indian innings was the promising debutant Rohit Sharma who scored a magnificent 50 under pressure. South Africa were never in the chase, losing too many wickets for too few runs. R.P.Singh was the bowling hero picking up 4 wickets for 16 only! Dinesh Karthik took a stunning catch to dismiss Graeme Smith. South Africa batted so badly that they couldn’t even make the 126 needed to qualify for the finals.Pity that with their first loss, they’re out of the tournament while Australia, Pakistan, New Zealand and India with one or more losses made it to the semis. Poor South Africa keep finding ways to exit a major tournament!

The semifinal against Australia was supposed to be a humdinger and it lived up to the billing. Yuvraj once again was the star, scoring 70 priceless runs in just 30 Australian deliveries continuing his six-hitting spree. India scored 189 runs in their innings.

Australia began their chase earnestly, scoring runs at a rapid pace before Gilchrist played all over a Sreesanth inswinger and had his stump uprooted. Brad Hodge scored some valuable runs with Hayden before he was out. In came Andrew Symonds and both the batsmen started hitting the balls out of the ground almost every ball that the asking rate dropped to 7 an over and an Australian victory was on cards But Sreesanth, returning to complete his quotam had other ideas. He uprooted Hayden’s stump and Pathan cleaned up Symonds. Indians had a chance to win the game. Australia required 30 off the last 3 overs with Clarke on strike.Harbhajan yorked his leg stump and the asking rate was climbing fast. Harbhajan bowled a splendid over and RP Singh bowled a great penultimate over conceding virtually nothing. One over and 22 runs required. Dhoni turned to his most expensive and inexperienced bowler Joginder Sharma. A few eyebrows were raised but Joginder bowled a good over and got the wicket of ‘Mr.Cricket’ Hussey and the World Champions over knocked out. This memorable Indian victory set up a most unlikely and most exciting final between India and Pakistan. Winning is the way to go!

India vs. England Super8 match in the inaugural Twenty20 World Cup was very important to India’s fortunes as it was a do-or-die match for the Indians. Indians batted first and Sehwag and Gambhir gave a splendid opening start of over 100. But even after that a score of 180 was unlikely and inadequate as well. After the opening pair, wickets fell regularly and India would’ve been extremely lucky to scrape past 180.But came the penultimate over-the 19th where Stuart Broad was to bowl to Yuvraj Singh who had just arrived at the crease. Yuvraj had been a flop in the tournament falling very cheaply in both the matches played. But after bowling the last ball of the previous over, Andrew Flintoff had provoked Yuvraj with his words and Yuvraj too retaliated before the umpire responded.

Yuvraj played the innings of his life hitting 6 sixes in the next over bowled by Stuart Broad and raced to his 50 in 12 balls-the fastest ever 50 in the history of Cricket. It was vintage hitting and poor Stuart Broad could only watch as Yuvraj’s hits cleared the ropes with absolute ease and after 5 hits, everyone was hoping that he’d make it 6 in a row and when it happened, everyone watching the match went out of breath and applauded Yuvraj wholeheartedly. It was a magnificent batting from this very talented and special cricketer. As a result, India cleared 200 with ease and reached 218. In the end, India defeated England by 18 runs to keep their semifinal hopes alive. The next match against South Africa would also be a must-win game.

Earlier in this summer, Dmitri Mascarenhas of England had clobbered five consecutive sixes in a Yuvraj over of innocuous slow leftarm. What a stage Yuvraj picked to pay back!!It was awesome and Mascarenhas could only watch the ball sail over the fence repeatedly and applauded. Kudos to Yuvraj for his blitzkrieg and a befitting reply to England. Go Yuvi go!!!I luv you so much! 🙂