Saturday, August 23, 2008

Hitting "Mute" on the Ocean Engg professors' brain

Ah...I'd have just loved to do that. Seriously !! on all those 4 profs who blabbered on and on in the 40 x 4 odd classes i had in that department.. and made me listen to 75% of those.. ! read on

TMS: The brain's mute button
The Michael Bay Verizon FiOS Commercial we're parodying is all over YouTube.

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) isn't only used to turn off the speech center of the brain, as depicted in the video accompanying the Daily Telegraph article that John highlights in this episode—it's also useful in therapeutic contexts. For example, it can be used to treat depression.

Naturally, Gawker Media sci-fi blog Io9 does its best to imagine the most dystopian way this treatment could possibly be used. The psychiatrist behind Corpus Callosum recently posted a good roundup of what's new in TMS.

Am sorry..but that damned sciam-monitor website doesn't tell me an obvious way to embed that video here.. Please go there and see the video for yourself.

Don't forget to list the people whom you would like to use this upon !

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Pani Puri !!

Ah.. a presentation on Pani Puri won some prize for the best slide show at Slide Share

just can't wait to have one.. will try making it rather.. !

via How to Change the World (thro Rahul Roy Chowdhury's google reader shared items)

Technology Shift

A nice slide show on technological shifts. Face those facts. But all those predictions seem nonsense to me. See it for the first few slides and once the predictions start.. forget it.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Some interesting olympics videos

Some truly interesting videos from the olympics of yesteryears !!

Kerri Strug wins a gold for the US team women gymnastics in a do or die situation..limping to the spring board... (let me not spoil the moment by describing it in mere words)

1996 Altanta Olympics - Kerri Strug's Gold Medal Vault

Eric Moussambani of Equatorial Guinea swims alone in the first of the 100m free style heats at the 2000 Sydney olympics.. hats off to him and for those who sponsored him to come up to this big stage to participate and booooooo to the laughing crowd and the taunting commentators ...

The Dream: Roy and HG on Eric 'The Eel' Moussambani

Do you know of other interesting videos ? Please include them in the comment.

via The Best Article Every day

Finding paths through the World's photos

Interesting stuff.. !! They take photos of a location from Flickr and create a 3D rendering out of that to create paths that take you from one photo to another !! Impressive stuff.. !

Interesting to know that a person of my own batch from IITD is involved..

link via Blogoscoped

Friday, August 15, 2008

Why craze for IIT's ?

Why this craze for IIT's ? Do they actually want/like to learn all the technical courses in all its mathematical rigor ? No ! Does India have enough jobs to employ people with the skill sets that IITs produce ? No ! Do people from IIT's actually take up careers in their core field ? No !! Correct me if I'm wrong here... If you have 100 people running a factory/enterprise/whatever try running it with 100 IITians !! most likely it fails to be a success. You need people who can design stuff/take decisions etc.. you also need people who can understand these designs and effect them. Any successful enterprise needs all kinds of engineers (not to forget other kinds of people)If everyone understands that any one kind are just different and not qualitatively better/worse than others, there should be no problem.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Quantum Mechanics - An Introduction by Julian Schwinger

Suddenly (but not without reason) I decided to drop the course OOPS and take Quantum Mechanics by Arvind instead. I remember almost nothing of the first course in .. hold your breath.. Chemistry.. that I did on Quantum Mechanics. My discussions (actually rather than discussions.. it has nearly always been me asking questions and Aswin ending up giving a long lecture) with Aswin on theoretical physics (usually Cosmology.. but many times on other aspects of Physics too) have always enthused me to take some courses on basic theoretical physics. However this is the first concrete step that I am taking in that direction. I hope to do atleast 2 more .. Classical Mechanics and Statistical Physics before I complete my Dual Degree here. Ok.. now coming to the subject matter of this blog.
The intro that I read in this book is easily one of the most coherent, simple and enlightening pieces of text that I have read. At the end of each para.. I would sit up exclaiming WOW !! and my mother would keep running in asking what happened ?? This was the situation at my home yest !! After reading it you really feel as if you've understood the whole of Quantum Mechanics, not to mention Quantum Field Theory and Quantum Electrodynamics. Of course I know I've not.. but you just feel so after reading it. I doubt if I would be able to read the book during the sem given my tight schedule. I would rather stick to Sakurai and Feynman and read this later. He starts off defining what is a "Causal" and "Deterministic" theory at the same time clearly differentiating between the two. Then he goes on to describe the two limiting cases of classical behaviour namely the Discrete and Continuous models and how they are unified. He then gives the example of the wave and particle nature of light to illustrate the above point. Then he goes on to describe the "atomistic" and "statistical" nature of microscopic phenomena using the example of Atomic spectra for the atomistic nature and the classical electron beam interference experiment for the statistical nature. After describing the theory of Measurement, he goes on to say why we can't measure the properties of an object at the microscopic scale without disturbing it because of the atomistic nature of things and why we can't correct for those measurements because of the statistical nature of things. This piece was particularly cool !! Using the above arguments he goes on to describe Quantum Mechanics as a Causal but only Statistically Deterministic theory. After this I did not understand everything as I had understood what he had said so far. nevertheless.. I shall make an attempt to tell something. He starts off on Symmetry describing particles using wavefunctions, particle creation operator and how all these result in the creation of "Quantum Field Theory" unifying the two limits of Classical Physics models already described. Then he goes on to describe how developments in technology helped them create higher energies to study particle interactions which resulted in the field of "Quantum Electrodynamics". Though the last particularly difficult to read, I really enjoyed reading a major part of the Intro. It will go a long way in making me ever more attentive in my Quantum Mechanics class and learning more about wonderful subject.
Browsing through his life history, you can find that Schwinger was an outright genius. His first physics paper was at 16 and his Ph.D at 21 with claims that he actually completed his thesis at 18 itself !! I can hardly wait to learn more about Quantum Mechanics to fully appreciate his achievements. (btw does anybody know of this guy..apparently a 15 year old M.Tech student at the CSE dept in my insti.. working in Cryptography under Pandu I saw him on Times Now yest and want to know more about this rare specimen in my insti)

Friday, July 28, 2006

Finally a fluid mechanics blog

Finally after some searching thanks to me registering with Technorati I found this blog. Seems to be pretty cool. Fluid Mechanics, Turbulence, PIV.. satisfied ??. here comes more.. Python, Scipy !! ............. Cool !!

Do check out the Image gallery in his blog
Found this interesting link there.. will take quite some time to see through all those pics

Photos !!

Ah !! Photos are becoming my favourite.. I am more and more beginning to look into Photo blogs. Whoever said these words is a God !!

A Picture is worth a thousand words !!

Infact.. I might start one myself..One thing is for sure.. Until I start a photo blog.. I request you all to use this to modify this page appropriately and block all images and show only their urls.. Otherwise.. browse through at your own peril !! Of course I mean wasting your bandwidth !!

Coming to this blog !! The words used to describe them were better than the photos themselves !! I would have put more more images.. had my performancing plugin worked for blogger. It worked for wordpress. and I don't know why it didn't work for blogger. Hence I had to write through the shady (read: too many frills, too slow) interface of blogger and that's the reason for so few images

The Distance

Where Colgate meets the Champion Tyes store

The foundations of prosperity
Liquid gold
The generation gap
I am thinking of switching over to Wordpress.. I am fine with the template they provide and hope that they offer better ones in the future and more importantly better cutomization. Categories is too important a feature missing here. Is anybody from blogger listening ??

btw.. does anybody know how to auto rescale images in Performancing.?? Of course I can manually edit the image urls to do that.. but I would be very grateful if peformancing had a feature and I knew it. . !!

Eye - Brain bandwidth

How Much the Eye Tells the Brain from
Researchers at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine estimate that the human retina can transmit visual input at about the same rate as an Ethernet connection, one of the most common local area network systems used today. They present their findings in the July issue of Current Biology. This line of scientific questioning points to ways in which neural systems compare to artificial ones, and can ultimately inform the design of artificial visual systems.


link via Krishworld

Monday, July 24, 2006

F-Spot.. the latest photo management application for GNOME

I saw this in LFY (dunno which month) recently.. Atleast the screenshots and the features listed seem to be pretty impressive.. The only problem .. requires Mono.. !!

Will give it a try as soon as I get back to Chennai.. which will be the next Monday btw. I should be on the train now next week  !!