Sunday, November 14, 2010

My (Google) Library

Things have been quiet on the blog for a while now. I've been busy with foobar2000, the semester project, etc among other things. I've finally got time to post an update. I've been working on this (not quite so) new feature in Google Books, called My Library. It is to, in their words, "help people harness the power of Google search within their own personal book collections."And it has somehow got me to set up the library, something I'd done back in an Orkut app in First year.

Well anyway, here's the Library so far. It's got almost all the books I've read in college (68 and counting) :D

Here's a li'l screen shot. I'm really grateful for this tool. And I must add, it's one of the few things Google's got right.


 PS: As an afterthought, this not so new feature has been around since 2007, so I think it qualifies as old :D

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Latest Scans: Max

It's been a while since I've put up any sketches. So here I am. It's an original—absolutely no inspirations—only past experience. Having drawn over a thousand anime sketches (most of which would never be up online,) I must say it turned out to be quite good.


PS: A finished work should be up soon! It's Diwali after all. What better time to have fun...

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Musings: The Holy Crusades vs The World Wars

WWI and WWII
First Crusade: 1100
Death due to the Crusades: 7 Million
World Population during the Crusades: 335 Million

Death Due to WWI: 16 Million
World Population during WWI: 1800 Million

Death Due to WWII: 64 Million
World Population during WWII: 2650 Million

Percentage population killed due to the Crusades: 2.09%
Percentage population killed due to WWI: 0.89%
Percentage population killed due to WWII: 2.56%

I'm not sure how I could add up the WWI and WWII figures, but if I did, I'm sure it would end up less than the Crusades. Then there's the fact that the Crusades took place in the Middle-East, while the World Wars covered almost the entire planet. And add to this the relative effectiveness of the weapons through the ages, we could... um, The rest is up to you.

PS: A series on Religion in the works

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Artwork: Kyōko Kamogawa

I've been working on this pic in bits n pieces. And finally, in the midst of the CTs, it's finally come together.


Hope this was worth the few marks off the Crypto test :D

PS: See link for the original sketch

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Is it just me?

Is it just me, or is life getting harder with every little advance in science and tech?

Friday, September 24, 2010

Review: Wolf’s Rain - 4/5

Wolfs Rain DVD
“I tell you now the words of Red Moon.  From the Great Spirit was born the Wolf, and Man became his messenger. The Beast lives his life in silence abiding where the blessing of the blood of the Gods bestowed upon him. The White Flower, after winning the favor of the lord of the night will share her scent. Preordained and eternal in countenance, her form is of a lily white supple Maiden. She distills and condenses all of time until it becomes a precious frozen mass. Only then will appear the wretched beast.” - Book of the Moon
Ever come across a series full of clichéd characters? The ever-determined, focused & righteous leader, the bad-guy-turned-good, the ever-hungry fat ass womanizer, or the kid who thinks he’s a big guy? Well, those are the four main protagonists of Wolf’s Rain; yet somehow, the show manages to hold the audience—not tightly gripped to the seats, but enough to stick along till the end. Oh yes, there are 2 ends—one after 26 episodes (because of Production Delay), and another after the 4 OVAs (the True End). While it is a good series, and a must watch for people who want something serious, I would advise against watching it just for pleasure—that beats the basic purpose of the series (then again, what’s ‘deep’ for one maybe fairly basic stuff for another.)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson

Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson went on a camping trip. After a good meal and a bottle of wine they lay down for the night, and went to sleep. Some hours later, Holmes awoke and nudged his faithful friend awake. "Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see."

Watson replied, "I see millions and millions of stars."

"What does that tell you?" Holmes questioned.

Watson pondered for a minute. "Astronomically, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets. Astrologically, I observe that Saturn is in Leo. Horologically, I deduce that the time is approximately a quarter past three. Theologically, I can see that God is all powerful and that we are small and insignificant. Meteorologically, I suspect that we will have a beautiful day tomorrow. What does it tell you?"

Holmes was silent for a minute, then spoke. "Watson, you idiot. Someone has stolen our tent."

LEGENDARY

And you know the worst part? I didn't realize about the tent either!

PS: I do not take ANY credit for this joke, except for the fact that I've spread it to a wider audience (in my own little way.)

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sixteen

I never conquered, rarely came
16 just held such better days
Days when I still felt alive
We couldn't wait to get outside
The world was wide, too late to try
The tour was over we'd survived
I couldn't wait till I got home
To pass the time in my room alone

 My exact feelings right now... besides a thing or two, 16 really held such better days...

Friday, June 25, 2010

Guitar: Basic Buying Tips - Finale

Index:
  1. Guitar buying tips: Intro!
  2. How much is your budget, and how flexible is it?
  3. What exactly do you need?
  4. How do you rate yourself?
  5. What do you expect from your kit?

Time has come for the final post in the series. It's been fun :D
Now lets take out the last thing to consider, your expectation!

4. What do you expect from your kit?
Are you buying the kit as a one-time investment (read my views on it in Q. 3)? Plan on upgrading/modding it later? What kind of sound do you want? All these are covered here, briefly. For a detailed outline on what all factors affect the sound/intonation, wait up for the Guitar: Technical analysis series! I also got a Cort X-11. There's going to be a review on it soon.

Modding:
For those planning to mod their axe, here’s a short example breakup of the costs (I can only tell the online cost estimates, it’s up to you to see if there is a cheaper source!):

  • Custom paint jobs:
    These can be a costly affair, and may not be available for your guitar, so it’s easier to get a Special/Limited Ed if it has a color option you prefer.
  • Pickup upgrades are a crazy expense:
    Pickups often tend to cost 50-60% of the guitar when you are in the <$500 range when bought separately. Keep that in mind!
  • You cannot upgrade the wood
    The wood is the guitar. If you change the body/neck, then you could have as well bought a custom from the start.

Here’s an example: Cort X-6 (Rs. 12.4k) comes with Mightymite BlueBuckers and the general opinion is that they suck. An upgrade to EMGs would cost Rs. 8000; a custom paint would be likely around Rs. 1500, and a change in the body a stupid thing to consider. The Cort X-11 comes at Rs. 19.5k and has EMGs, a custom paintjob, and Flamed Maple top*.
* The difference in body if preferred, costs about Rs. 3500 when making a custom guitar.

In International figures, Cort X-6 comes at ~$260 and Cort X-11 at about ~$350.
EMGs (the ones X-11 has): $55x2-$35x2 = $40
Custom Paint: ~$30
Flamed Maple top: $700
I’m sure you can do the math…

Sound:
The sound of a guitar is most influenced by the Amp and not the guitar. More precisely, the sound comes in this order:
Amp>>Pedal>>Pickup>>Body>Neck
So if the guitar isn’t a instrumental handicap on your playing abilities, upgrade the Amp, and get a pedal first.

Remember the kit can’t make music for you. Expect less, research a lot and spend wisely.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Guitar: Basic Buying Tips - You

Index:
  1. Guitar buying tips: Intro!
  2. How much is your budget, and how flexible is it?
  3. What exactly do you need?
  4. How do you rate yourself?
  5. What do you expect from your kit?

It's been a long time since I've posted on this topic. But it needs to be done. And what better time than when you're awake at 4 in the morning! Depending on you, the answer might vary to today's issue.

3. How do you rate yourself?
Now this is a completely different question, hmm? Nothing to do with guitars in this one. What I mean by this is that you should know whether you’re a Novice or a Pro, whether you intend to continue further, what you are looking for (Q. 2), etc.

If you're a beginner, don't make it a one-time investment, because you may realize you need something different after playing for a while. One-time investments are usually costlier (“high-risk” to my finance mind) and to be made with a lot of care.

And of course my argument doesn't stand if you've had plenty of experience and know what you are doing. Sites such as Ultimate Guitar, and Harmony Central have some amazing reviews. You would be able to feel the guitar without even touching it once! (But that doesn't mean you don't touch it at least once before buying)

PS: I myself went against this golden rule when I bought my first, and now my second EG! It's like I said, don't do something stupid. If you know what you're doing, you should be fine.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Review: Elfen Lied - 4.5/5

I'm a veteran of many anime... Yet I’ve seen few that can convey so much, and throw out such an elaborate plot in s screen time of just ~300mins. It is a Horror/Action anime with some Romance. But that can tell almost nothing about this anime. In fact, once you see the series, you will realize how deep the entire plot really is...

I had just watched Shingetsu Tsukihime, and had that hollow feeling, the one you get after completing a good anime. And what is the best solution to it? Watch another one!! I’d seen a lot of wallpapers of Elfen Lied, seen some user ratings and such; So, I was kinda interested in trying it. To cut the story short, that’s what I did.

Watching a naked girl ripping people to pieces was never my idea of an anime. Little did I know that was what I would get. I really couldn’t leave it without watching the first episode. So, I carried on. And I never looked back. 6 hours on this in the morning, and I had a hollow deeper that when I’d started...

The anime derives its name from the tune played by Kohta’s music-box, Elfenlied (literally ‘Elf Song’). That one tune itself is beautiful, a perfect blend of pain, suffering, mystique and horror. The visual quality and the character designs are amazing. The opening theme, Lilium (Latin for Lily) is one of the best I’ve heard.

The plot revolves an insensitive guy, Kohta, his cousin, Yuka, and a Diclonus, Lucy/Nyu. There are many others, who play important roles, but it’s a pain to mention them all due to the sheer number of people that keep dying...
Nyu                                                                Yuka                                                           Kohta

It begins with some crazy scenes, leaving us to wonder what’s going on. We eventually realize the girl was held captive, and is attempting to escape. She takes a bullet to her head, as she’s about to escape. Then we are introduced to Kohta and Yuka, who have met after eight years. Yuka drags him to the beach. They are chatting, when the girl (the same one) suddenly appears in the water. She doesn’t have any clothes on, (leading to some funny moments) and it looks like she has lost her memory. Eventually, she is taken by the two to the hotel where Kohta was going to stay. This is when the story starts off...

Friday, June 11, 2010

Bleach: Sousuke Aizen

In my opinion, he might become the best ever Antagonist... He's definitely up there, on the top... With greats like Magneto and Joker...

Courtesy: OneManga

Infact, I'm gonna try to photoshop this pic up.. Dunno when though :)

Latest Scans: Kyōko Kamogawa

I've been working on this one for some time now, and the photoshop transformation is almost done.. so I thought it's time I put the scan online... 35MB is converted to 350KB. I hope picasa won't mess this up for me :|


Well what a surprise.. It did not (and it usually doesn't)... Artwork to be uploaded sometime soon...

PS: Working on the next guitar post in the series, a mobile review, 2 anime reviews and a POEM :S
Got some work besides that too..
And here I thought I could study for the placements!

Update: Check the colored version here.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Guitar: Basic Buying Tips - Need

Index:

  1. Guitar buying tips: Intro!
  2. How much is your budget, and how flexible is it?
  3. What exactly do you need?
  4. How do you rate yourself?
  5. What do you expect from your kit?

I hope the previous post would've helped someone, or will help someone someday. Anyways, I'm just posting to make a record for myself (^_^) It's a personal blog after all. Well then, I guess I should move on to the second question I'd mentioned.

2. What exactly do you need?
It can be more specifically framed as “What do you play?” or "What do you want to play?" If you’re clueless, then think up what kind of music do you prefer, and if you’re aiming to play those. If it’s still too hard to figure, then choose a flexible guitar...

MetalYou can get a good Metal axe by sticking to Cort EVL/X series and the Ibanez GRG series in the lower ranges. If you intend to spend Rs. 25000+ ($500), then you can explore a lot of options such as Schecters, ESPs, Ibanez Prestige and Jacksons, or heck, even Signature Guitars (Kirk Hammet Sig guitars come at Rs. 35k and the more expensive one at Rs. 90k)
Technically, you should be looking for Double Humbuckers, Good Harmonics, Thin neck for shredding, and maybe a less noisy Clean tone for those Acoustic-like sections.

JazzWell, this would be a Fender specialty (Given that this is about Solid-Body Guitars). If not, an Arch--top is the way to go. Getting down to the lower ranges (for whom this guide is actually made,) it would be good to go with a Strat replica, such as the Yamaha Pacifica, or maybe Fender Squiers. I really can’t say much but here are some important things to look for: Single coils for that Fenderesque tone, Noiseless cleans, etc. Some pros prefer a humbucker at the neck for the best sound. Remember, the guitar needs to produce a clear, consistent, and resonant tone when it is played moderately.

Some general stuff most players prefer in a guitar are:

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Guitar: Basic Buying Tips - Budget

Index:
  1. Guitar buying tips: Intro!
  2. How much is your budget, and how flexible is it?
  3. What exactly do you need?
  4. How do you rate yourself?
  5. What do you expect from your kit?

Ready with your response? It would be better if you did your homework. Well anyway, let’s address the first  issue now:

1. How much is your budget, and how flexible is it?
This is probably the most important aspect, given you’re not buying one just ‘cuz you have too much cash. Depending on how much you are willing to spend, the best guitars available would vary, and with them, the features.

Keep in mind that you will need an amp too (more about that later.) Here’s a short breakup of the price ranges (Rupees in thousands):

Monday, June 7, 2010

Guitar: Basic Buying Tips - Intro

I’ve been meaning to write this for a while now… help you people decide what kinda guitar to buy if you’re looking for a new one… or just to spend all that extra cash. This is specific to Electrics, though I’m not saying you won’t benefit if you’re planning to splurge on an expensive Acoustic either. (More specifically, it’s written keeping Solid-Body Guitars in mind.)

Well then… Let’s roll.

These are a few things to consider before you go. Keep them in mind.

  1. How much is your budget, and how flexible is it?
    This doesn’t require an explanation I’d presume.
  2. What exactly do you need?
    Put simply, what kind of music do you intend to play.
  3. How do you rate yourself?
    Not just how well you play the guitar, but also what do you want, what kind of an investment it will be, etc.
  4. What do you expect from your kit?
    After all, a kit can only get you so far…

Get a rough idea of your response to the above Qs. I’ll be posting a solution to each point in the coming days. Do follow if you intend to buy a guitar sometime soon. You won’t regret it. After all, I’m writing this after spending about 14 months on deciding which one I want to buy…

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Bleach 353 - The Ashes

Courtesy: OneManga

A beautiful scene from the Bleach Manga (353 - The Ashes)

Here's an excerpt to help those who are totally lost (^_^)
During a speech to Orihime, he claims he does not believe in human emotions, which he refers to as the "heart", reasoning that if his eye cannot see them, then they do not exist. These words, and much of Ulquiorra's overall behavior, can lead one to assume that he is a firm believer in the concept of materialism, which also connects to his aspect of death as an Espada, nihilism. In the last seconds of his life, he seemed to have finally found his own "heart" and understood feelings.
- Bleach Wiki 
This is not the first time that Ulquiorra is stunned by Orihime's fearlessness. His final words, in response to this are beautiful.
"What is it? If I tear open your chest, will I see it in inside? If I shatter your skull, will I see it in there? You damn humans speak so easily of it... Almost as if...
I see.. This.. Yes.. This thing in my hand.. Is the heart?"

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Ah.. This Feeling

I'm seldom affected by emotions. But what a day it has been. A ton of misery flavored with a sprinkle of joy. Hehe. And here I thought a 9+ would please me. How wrong I was. In the end, I'm just too depressed because I've completed the Bleach anime (till episode 264). It was amazing while it lasted. And yet I'm miserable now. Wondering when the series will continue. Praying for the next episode to be released!

The music, animation and storyline, all blend to a perfect mix. It's left me waiting for more. A 264 episode saga, waiting to take another step next week, and then yet another the next. On and on, to catch up with the manga. I'll start with the manga tomorrow. But what will I do when even that gets over.

Well, that was about the ton of misery. Now the only bit of joy in the whole day was my result. While it was ok, and I would've been glad if it were some other day, today was just not the time for it. It lightened me for 5 minutes (and thats what a semester of work comes down to!) and then I was right back to pining for more Bleach.


PS: I'm just too miserable right now. For some, it brings out the best in them. But for me, it's just ruins my english. I might go about correcting it later. Or maybe not.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Sleeper SUX

It does.. I'm nevr gonna travel in sleeper again if I can help it. The people there suck. The environment sucks too. It was a horrible trip to get back home. But I'm fine now. And All's well that ends well. More on this when I get time. I'm too busy watchin Bleach right now (episode 221, here I come ^_^)

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Exams!!

End Semesters are finally here.. (from tomorrow, 10/05/10, to be specific) Won't be posting very often. And I'm sure won't be getting any visits either, whether I post or not :S
Did some interesting stuff yesterday. Will post about it later.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Awesome Music: Bleach OST 1

Some of the best Music I've heard in a long while. Bleach OST 1. I've listed all the songs, along with my opinion on the song. Good and Awesome rated songs are a must-download. Most of the good ones are Track 15+

  1. On the Precipice of Defeat - Interesting
  2. ~asterisk~ (ost version.)
  3. Comical World - Interesting
  4. Oh So Tired - Good
  5. Head in the Clouds - Interesting
  6. Ditty for Daddy
  7. Creeping Shadows - Good
  8. Raw Breath of Danger
  9. Enemy Unseen - Good
  10. Will of the Heart - Interesting
  11. Requiem for the Lost Ones - Good
  12. Nothing Can Be Explained (vocal version.) - Interesting
  13. Burden of the Past - Interesting
  14. Destiny Awaits
  15. Catch-22 - Awesome

Nothing can hurt more...

Not much stuff can hurt more than hearing something like...
We're really not meant to be
I wish you'd never known me
Your life would've been much simpler
'N mine, peaceful...

You used to make me smile each morning
Now, you make me cry each morning
Two statements that are a perfect epilogue for what has been going on the past one month. I'm gonna immortalize this day by putting this in the blog. Someday, years from now, maybe I'd look through my posts n find this again. I hope my reaction then won't be even more pain. And maybe someday, in the midst of all that, I'd look through my chats, and see if what I'd said was any better.

Ah. People. Be careful of falling in love. It's the best thing that can happen when you're in the thing. But trust me, it's not so good once it's over.

And that was just one of the many things. Sometimes I wonder how we can hurt someone and claim that we still love them. What kind of an epic prank is that? More pain, more misery, more fighting, all in the name of love. Yet life goes on. Reminding you time and again of the things you had, and those that you didn't. To a conclusion still unknown.

PS: All those jerks who asked, "Aaj tu jaa nahi raha hai?" have stopped existing for me. And that's a lot of people. It's surprising. It takes 5 days for news to spread when people start going out. And yet, even a month cannot throw light on a breakup.

(edit: 10/07 2010) We got together again. I guess the news hadn't spread cuz we hadn't truly broken up. Love is strange indeed.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Strange? Not really...

Yeah.. I was wondering. No internet for a day, and visits per day drop from 100+ per day to less than 30... Or is it 'cuz of the practical exams that started from today?

Well anyways, its just going to drop further as I won't be posting too much new stuff for the next two weeks... Photoshop and Sketching will have to wait. And so will the bits of poems I've been trying to put together (My first try at it since 8th or something.) I wasn't bad at them then, and think I should fare pretty well even now. :D

Hmm. I had OS pracs today. To cut the long story short (really short), it was BAD. Managed to do the code (I've not had a problem with coding for almost 8 years now :|) but the viva sucked. Need I say more?

See ya people in some 14 days.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Bleach Quotes

Its amazing. An anime thats so completely grounded in fantasy can teach you so much. Of course a lot of them make sense only in the context. But there are many which are true in life. These are some of the quotes from Bleach Season 1 (Zangetsu Unleashed), Season 2 (The Entry) and Season 3 (The Rescue):

  • Admiration is the furthest thing from understanding - Aizen Sosuske
  • Don’t use other people as an excuse to kill yourself - Urahara Kisuke
  • Remember this well. There are 2 types of fights and we must know the difference when we engage ourselves to battle. To protect life and the fight to protect pride... If you interfere in the latter, you kill the person's pride - Ukitake Juushiro
  • Don’t use such strong words, it only makes you look weak - Aizen Sosuske
  • When two powerful forces collide, the one that pushes less gets hurt - Zaraki Kenpachi
  • Anger can dull the blade - Grand Fisher
  • I wasn't able to be Number 1, but I never thought "I shouldn't have tried." Even if it doesn't turn out well, there are things you can't understand till you try your best.

Latest Scans: Sakai

Hey guys. Here's one of my favorite sketches. You can probably make out because its the second scan of the same pic (no, actually the first one was a cam shot.) I drew it sometime in 11th Grade. And guess what. I took time off early morning to photoshop it too :D

Friday, April 30, 2010

New Sketches Scanned!

I've been busy.. There are loads of new scans coming up. Cars and Anime. Some of them are really old though.. Pre-College years.. I'm sure it wont be hard to make out... (Old paper turns yellow, for those wondering how...)

Best Animes Ever

All you anime fans there. Which among the the ones you've seen have left a lasting impression on you? Which did you feel were beyond comparison. Have you ever given any thought to it? You would realize that many of these have redundant themes of how hard work and self-belief can take you anywhere. I will be coming up with detailed opinions on each of them sometime later, but here's a list of the best of them:

  • Bleach (Just 20 episodes, and its the first name I take)
  • Death Note
  • Naruto
  • Dragonball Z (It was the first one... It will always be there on this list)
  • Inu Yasha (I need to complete this one)
  • Rurouni Kenshin (aka Samurai X)
  • Monster
  • Blood +
  • Code Geass
  • Trinity Blood
  • Full Metal Alchemist
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender
  • Captain Tsubasa

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Bleach

The new anime I've been watching.. it rocks.. seriously.. And there have been a lot of points that have really touched me.. I'l go on about them sometime soon... Too tired right now...

PS: Don't count on a review or anything else about it for atleast another 4 months... its about 300 episodes...

Life's Like a Boat

Original / Romaji Lyrics
English Translation
Nobody knows who I really am
I never felt this empty before
And if I ever need someone to come along,
Who's gonna comfort me, and keep me strong?

Nobody knows who I really am
I never felt this empty before
And if I ever need someone to come along,
Who's gonna comfort me, and keep me strong?
We are all rowing the boat of fate
The waves keep on coming and we can't escape
But if we ever get lost on our way
The waves would guide you through another day

We are all rowing the boat of fate
The waves keep on coming and we can't escape
But if we ever get lost on our way
The waves would guide you through another day
dooku de iki o shiteru toomei ni natta mitai
kudayami ni omoe dakedo mekaku shisarete tadake

Far away, I'm breathing, as if I were transparent
It would seem I was in the dark, but I was only blindfolded
inori o sasagete atarashii hi o matsu
asayaka ni hikaru umi sono hate made

I give a prayer as I wait for the new day
Shining vividly up to the edge of that sea
Nobody knows who I really am
Maybe they just don't give a damn
But if I ever need someone to come along
I know you would follow me, and keep me strong

Nobody knows who I really am
Maybe they just don't give a damn
But if I ever need someone to come along
I know you would follow me, and keep me strong
hito no kokoro wa utsuriyuku mukedashiteku naru
tsuki wa mada atarashii shuuki de mune o tsureteku

People's hearts change and sneak away from them
The moon in its new cycle leads the boats again
And every time I see your face
The ocean heaves up to my heart
You make me wanna strain at the oars, and soon
I can see the shore

And every time I see your face
The ocean heaves up to my heart
You make me wanna strain at the oars, and soon
I can see the shore
Oh, I can see the shore
When will I see the shore?

Oh, I can see the shore
When will I see the shore?
I want you to know who I really am
I never thought I'd feel this way towards you
And if you ever need someone to come along,
I will follow you, and keep you strong

I want you to know who I really am
I never thought I'd feel this way towards you
And if you ever need someone to come along,
I will follow you, and keep you strong
tabi wa mada tsuzuiteku odayakana hi mo
tsuki wa mata atarashii shuuki de ume o terashidasu

And still the journey continues on quiet days as well
The moon in its new cycle shines on the boats again
inori o sasagete atarashii hi o matsu
asayaka ni hikaru umi sono hate made

I give a prayer as I wait for the new day
Shining vividly up to the edge of that sea
And every time I see your face
The ocean heaves up to my heart
You make me wanna strain at the oars, and soon
I can see the shore

And every time I see your face
The ocean heaves up to my heart
You make me wanna strain at the oars, and soon
I can see the shore
Unmei no huneoko gi nami wa tsugi kara tsuki e to watashi-tachi    
o sou kedo
Sore mo suteki na tabi ne, Dore mo suteki na tabi ne
We are rowing the boat of fate, but the waves keep attacking us

But isn't that still a wonderful journey? Aren't any of them?

Translated by Rizuchan


The first ending theme of Bleach - Life is Like a Boat. Beautiful song...
Here's a link to it (warning: its a Japanese, TV Preview): Life is Like a Boat - Bleach7

Bleach Original Anime SoundtrackBleach Original Anime Soundtrack 1
Shiro Sagisu

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Concept of Man

"If you saw Atlas, the giant who holds the world on his shoulders, if you saw that he stood, blood running down his chest, his knees buckling, his arms trembling but still trying to hold the world aloft with the last of his strength, and the greater his effort the heavier the world bore down on his shoulders—what would you tell him to do?"
"To Shrug."

Ayn Rand, an Russian-American novelist, philosopher, playwright and screenwriter put forward a theory of the greatness of man, the power of reason, the importance of ego. She developed a philosophical system which she called "Objectivism". A brief extract is given below. (Skip, 'cuz it wont make sense to you..  Not in essence, anyway.)

"Objectivism holds that reality exists independent of consciousness; that individual persons are in direct contact with reality through sensory perception; that human beings can gain objective knowledge from perception through the process of concept formation and inductive and deductive logic; that the proper moral purpose of one's life is the pursuit of one's own happiness or rational self-interest; that the only social system consistent with this morality is full respect for individual rights, embodied in pure laissez faire capitalism; and that the role of art in human life is to transform man's widest metaphysical ideas, by selective reproduction of reality, into a physical form—a work of art—that he can comprehend and to which he can respond emotionally." - Wikipedia

She emphasizes the importance of individualism over collectivism, rational self-interest, and looking at man as a heroic being. Some of her most powerful and moving thoughts have been immortalized in her Best-Selling novel: Atlas Shrugged. Here are a few of those. Read. Give it some thought. It could change your life.

  • The choice--the dedication to one's highest potential--is made by accepting the fact that the noblest act you have ever performed is the act of your mind in the process of grasping that two and two make four.
  • I am, therefore I'll think.
  • Love is our response to our highest values.
  • I swear by my life, and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another, nor ask another to live for mine.

Monday, April 26, 2010

How to get a Presentation right

Well, I posted about my first experience in giving a presentation a short while back. So what can you do to improve your presentation skills? Here are a few things I figured out:

  • Prepare Well. Know the topic through and through
    People usually want to charge right in and prepare the slides. But it is much better to give some time for research and knowledge gathering first. And once the slides are made, you should take some time for planning your execution. Without a proper idea of how and what going to present, you can just manage an average show.
  • Use Key Phrases about the topic
    Use only the most important information. Use key phrases to deliver the idea precisely. Your topic may be vast, but choose only the top three or four points.
  • Avoid too much Text
    A presentation should only provide an outline of the information you are going to present. Don't put too much text, or no one will bother to read. The major role of the slides is to provide an outline, and not to be your notes.
  • Use a Design Template, or make one. Consistent layout is a big plus
    If you can somehow manage to provide a consistent layout without design templates, good for you. But for a majority of the people there, templates are the way to go. And yes, after applying one, use the slide master to make any changes. They will be reflected on the entire presentation. If you want to adjust just one particular slide, don't.
  • Help the Audience Gain Interest. Get the message across
    This is an important requirement if you want to deliver. There is no point sticking to all the tips I've outlined if you can't get this right. If the audience doesn't understand, the presentation was as good as useless. This is valid only if your audience is the least bit interested.

Computer Graphics Presentation

I kinda figured out today why my dad prepares so much before his conferences (given that he gives them on national and international stages.) It is entertaining. And not for the ones sitting there listening to you. Everything starting from the part where you realize there's a presentation you got to prepare, to the actual execution (which can be very different from what you'd expect.)

While I could say my presentation went well, I was clearly not executing what I'd planned (which was next to nothing, but anyway.) There were so many points that I just missed out due to sheer nervousness added on to lack of preparation. Yes, I have stage fright.

Ah. That reminds me of that last year in school, where I was playing guitar for the Art & Literary Meet in school. I was so freaked, my legs were shaking. And that's the reason I won 2nd in it too (or that's what I'd like to believe.) Seriously. I was literally shaking head to toe. My feet were tapping (read: shaking) to the beat. And thats where I think i go the points. They were with the beat. And just before the final section of my first song, they started shaking so hard, it looked like I was slamming them down on purpose. That's where I thought. This is it. I stopped my feet. Missed a beat. Played the last part. Nothing Else Matters. People thought it was all a part of the show. There was an uproar. Enough that I played the Fade to Black and Master Of Puppets mix in a breeze.

But I digress. I was going on about my presentation right? Yes. Well, one main thing I realized about this one was that we need to prepare well for it. Do some preparation on what exactly your going to say, a few rehearsals, and so on. I realize taking a leaf out of my dad's book will only help here.

PS: The topic was YIQ Color Model :)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Beer Drinker's Cheat Sheet

Beer with food. Many of us find it hard to figure out the best combinations. Without trying different options a few times, we can almost never manage to figure out what works best. If you think there might be an easier solution, you just might be in luck.

The following guidelines should give you a good idea of what goes with what best without too much thought.
  • Pale Ales - Salads, light appetizers, fish and seafood
  • India Pale Ales (IPAs) - IPAs can stand up to a little more richness and flavor. They can go well with things like pulled pork, pizza, and fried chicken, as well as lighter salads and seafood dishes. And if you like heat, try an IPA with spicy food - the hoppiness really pumps up the spice quotient!
  • Hefeweizens and Wheat Beers - Fruit dishes, dinner salads, grain salads, and desserts made with warm spices (cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg).

Disturbing Scenes in Tondon 14

Amazing footage of a fight between Piyush and Nirmal is here.. I might upload it soon. keep a look out guys..
This video really shows a friendly squabble gone wrong. What they were doing is left for you to interpret. But first, I need to ensure I will live after uploading this clip.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

New Sketch

Hehe... finally the update I'd mentioned about 5 days back.. or was it earlier? well anyway, here it is:


Its a rough sketch based on Maserati Birdcage 75th, a model designed by Pininfarina.
For more details: Maserati Concept

Photoshopped design coming up sometime next week (remember what I'd said about predictions? Link

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Autophobia?

Self hatred of levels I could not have believed possible coming at me, wave after wave. (Self-hatred, self-loathing, also sometimes autophobia refers to an extreme dislike of oneself, or being angry at oneself.) Strange. Just 2 months back, I'd lost my SanDisk Cruzer Blade (8 GB) and I thought I couldn't possible feel worse. It was Dad's gift for my college performance, and it was love at first sight. But amazingly, that wasn't enough for me to be cautious about it. Some day in my first month of ownership, I left it in the Computer Center, and lost it forever. It's amazing, the amount of hatred one can feel for oneself. I could have put emo's to shame, had I the courage to act.

And now, the whole thing repeats itself. In magnified proportions. I forgot my pen in the Computer Center. Left it. Abandoned it. To face dangers unknown, in the hands of people unknown. Now I regret it. Hate myself. I shouldn't have bought it in the first place. A gem of a Pierre Cardin it was. And this memory has to be put into record. To bring me down to earth every time I feel too proud of my achievements. To make me remember, even the mighty can falter. That pride goes before a fall.

Precious things (not people, things) I've lost in college:
DVD/CD Pouch - Over 25 DVDs, over 120 GB Games
Givson Acoustic Guitar
Moserbaer PenD - 4GB
SanDisk Cruzer Blade - 8GB
Parket Vector Steel - Fountain Pen
Pierre Cardin Satin - Fountain Pen
Destroyed my iPod 5th Gen Screen
Sony Ericsson Mobile Charger
Almost lost my K750i - Its dead now, so it doesn't matter
Almost lost my 5310XM - 4 Times
Almost lost my TI-83 - 2 Times
Countless Text-Books and Novels
Lost my Wallet+ATM Cards+1000 bucks+iCard
Lost 1500 bucks (Dunno if it counts.. It happened when I was travelling back to College)

PS: I'll keep adding on, as things come. And yeah. The list of things I've lost will come as a new post soon :D

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Watermelons

Watermelon in the peak of summer: Rs. 12/kg
World's most expensive watermelon: $791.07/kg
A slice of watermelon stolen from Tandon mess at lunch: Priceless

Prediction: My thoughts an year from now

In the words of a modern hero, Dumbledore, "The future is hard to predict. The thoughts and actions that lead to an event are impossible to predict. And Professor Trelawney is living proof of that. To have made three true predictions is indeed a great feat."
And here I am, trying go take my first swipe at this strange and unpredictable art... Not the first, I should admit.. Hehe.. But one of the first few :D

I'm a man, I'ma make a new plan
Time for me to just stand up, and travel new land
Time for me to just take matters into my own hands
Once I'm over these tracks man I'ma never look back
And I'm gone, I know right where I'm goin
Sorry momma I'm grown, I must travel alone
ain't gon' follow the footsteps I'm making my own
Only way that I know how to escape from this 8 Mile Road


work in progress :P

PS: Don't tell me Dumbledore's quote is wrong.. I know it is :| Couldn't find the source

8 Mile [Explicit]
Eminem
8 Mile [Explicit]
8 Mile: Soundtrack

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Right Now

Amazing lyrics.. Brings your suffering in perspective. Really! We all feel we are the most unfortunate people on earth, or that we deserve so much more. And often, we just watch others in pain, and dismiss it as if it doesn't matter at all. What will it take for us to get on with our lives and not complain about every hurdle that comes on our path? Indeed, in this world anything can happen, anything can change just like that

Musings: Love and Ego

The ego is very much involved in romantic love. Lack of self-worth may turn love into an unexpressed secret when there is fear of possible non-reciprocation. Loving another person can make us intensely sensitive to the regard with which we are held in the eyes of our beloved. When love is expressed but love (or respect) is not reciprocated -- or not reciprocated enough -- it is the ego that hurts. When the beloved forgets about us in plans & actions -- or is otherwise insensitive -- it is the ego that hurts. This is the awful truth that so often turns "love" into hate -- the extreme bitterness & vengefulness of love spurned. Even when love does not turn to hate, the sadness & hurt of the one whose love has not been returned is a suffering of the ego - a wounding of pride. Those who most easily turn love into hate are those most at the mercy of their own ego.

For more details, read on: http://www.benbest.com/philo/philove.html#ego

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Red to Black

Theres been a lot going on in my life the last few days.. n things seem to be taking a turn for the worse...
Fun Fact: none.. just a lot of pain right now

The whole time smiling on the outside
To cover the pain
But on the inside
All he was trying to do was get away
Dying to get away
Let the pain of yesterday
Go slipping through the cracks


New Pix Comin up

ive started takin out time for some concept sketching...
pix coming up soon :D

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Some REALLY old photoshop work..

This stuff's been there on orkut for a while now... Just thot i'd upload to Picasa.. Have to put somethin in after makin an account right? :D

Picasa - Photoshop Album

Some previews:


Not anythin great... but i think they were worth a mention :)

The Underrated

Hmm.. This will be a long list. And I intend to add explanations to my choices in this (in due time :P)
  • Hard-work
  • Glucose
  • PJs
  • Coffee
  • Magneto
  • Anger
  • Genius
  • Money
  • Music
  • Electricity
  • Velcro
  • Nitrogen
  • Hands
  • Ice-Water

I'm back (yet again)

Hehe... atleast for a post or two.. n to start the Under-rated Series :D (idea thanks to Anshul's Over-rated Series, and Pallavi's Chocolate Series)