Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Random Fart

Q: Why is an empty String unethical or immoral?
A: Because it does not have any character! wah wah! wah wah!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Javascript sleep() or wait()

While thinking on a solution for handling javascript "alerts" in Sahi, it suddenly occured to me that a sleep() or wait() method can be implemented in javascript with the help of a synchronous XMLHttp request to the server.
It goes like:

function sahiIsIE(){
var browser = navigator.appName;
return browser == "Microsoft Internet Explorer";

function sahiCreateRequestObject(){
var obj;
obj = new ActiveXObject("Microsoft.XMLHTTP");
obj = new XMLHttpRequest();
return obj;

function sahiSendToServer(url){
var http = sahiCreateRequestObject();
var url = url;
http.open("GET", url, false);
return http.responseText;
}catch(ex){throw ex;}

function sleep(ms){

var start = new Date();
alert((new Date()) - start);


The url http://localhost:9999/dyn/sleep?ms=1000 does a Thread.sleep(1000);

Of course there is the network delay which makes the time out slightly greater than 1000 ms;

[Dec 20 2007] NOTE: This method can give you a way to invoke a sleep on the browser, but it will also kind of freeze the browser which may not be what you want. I solved this problem in a different way for Sahi. (javascript-sleep-or-wait-in-sahi.html)

Friday, December 09, 2005

Covered two-wheelers (with AC?) for Bangalore

While walking to office at 9 AM, I observed that out of 96 cars that I counted, 72 had just the driver in it! Of the 24 left, only 6 had more than 2 persons! Every Scorpio(6) and Innova(2) had only the driver in it!

Could covered two-wheelers (with AC?) do the job?

And Scorpios and Innovas should not start if the load is less than that of 3 passengers!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Tiger Numbers

I was in Panna Tiger Reserve last week and came across something quite disturbing.

While the official figures for the number of tigers in the Park is around 35, locals and forest guides who track tigers say that only 6-7 have been sighted/presence ascertained in recent times. Liberal estimates place the number of tigers in the Park at around 15.

While I have no authority on reporting these numbers, one of the reasons for these figures not being reported from other directions, seems to be this:

* Forest officials are posted to a particular reserve for a fixed amount of time (3 years?). During this period, if they report any change in tiger numbers, they are liable to be questioned and pestered by the media and law enforcement officials. So even if an official inherits a reserve with lesser tigers than documented, he is not likely to report it.

* Researchers in the park depend on the forest officials for permits and for access to the forests. They cannot go against the forest officials by reporting this.

So that leaves nobody to actually report figures, which is disturbing.

The law and media somehow, convolutedly, seem to right now act as a deterrant in the conservation process. What tigers have gone, have gone. The need of the hour is to preserve what is left rather than punish those who have erred.

If there was some way of emancipating the forest officials once, so that figures are voluntarily disclosed truly (with the guarantee that no action will be taken against them), we may be able to get the correct numbers, and remedial measures can be undertaken with speed. Right now, the problem areas never come to light until past the time of debacle.

Additionally, researchers should not have to depend on forest officials for their permits. I think there is already something being done in this direction, though I do not have the details.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Random Quote

I was not staring. You just happened to fall in my gaze of contemplation.

Sunday, November 20, 2005


Am in Chennai, and wrote a lot of documentation for Sahi and uploaded them on the website. Excited about my travel plans to the jungles of Madhya Pradesh.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Moth in a lampshade

A snap I had taken in Goa. This moth was sitting inside a light bulb reflector. This was taken with a Nokia 6610i camera!

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Bird Watching

A slightly harsh chirp and a little movement like a small ghost in motion. Or maybe just a white ribbon with a black head, which has acquired a life of its own? A possessed ribbon, may be? Well, even as reason and experience tells me that what I see is the adult male Paradise Flycatcher, I can't rip my eyes off the bird. As I watch, it flits from its perch and makes a rounded flight, a twist here a turn there with its two long, white, tail feathers making undulating movements moving not very unlike the Olympic gymnasts and goes back to exactly where it started from. A chirp again.

Nearby is its female, an orangish brown bird, without the long tail feathers and with a black head. Quite unrelated to our gymnast for the uninitiated! But there goes nature in another of its bewildering and bewitching variations. A delight to the beholder but a beautiful moment gone unnoticed for the less visually adept.

Of all things that have caught my fascination, nothing has so far surpassed the joy that I derive from bird-watching. I had always been awed by birds, but not because of the cliched reasons of their flight or their colors or their songs.

It was as if I was just destined to love the avian fauna, no explicit reasons whatsoever. (The same extends to my love for animals too). The one reason I do sometimes think is true is their freedom and their so distinctly non-human behavior. Or maybe I am just curious about these creatures in an intellectual sort of way... I do not know and for the time being ascribe none of these reasons to my passion.

Initially, we used to look out for newer and as-yet-unseen-by-us species of birds and used to compete as to who has the bigger bird list. But now things are changed, it doesnot matter what bird it is. Be it the excitement of a fleeting glimpse of an Indian Pitta, or the tranquil movements of the bee eaters or the swallows, they instill me with a sense of appreciation for those things untouched by man. And I could just watch the fantail flycatchers and the ioras or hear the orioles and thrushes and waft away to sleep on the bank of some forest stream unconcerned about all else in the world! If only I did not have such a human mind, with its wants and greed! May be I will break away one day, but that day is not in the near future, as far as I can see!

Decided to record my bird sightings on the web by creating treepie.org.
Been using it on and off. Need to be more regular and may be get others to use it too.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

If double clicking on a folder on the right hand pane of explorer opens a new window all the time, here is the fix. I know this works for XP.
Open explorer
Go to Tools > Folder Options... > File Types (tab)
Select "File Folder" and click on "Advanced" button.
Add a new junk entry by clicking "New".
Enter values "To DOS" and "cmd.exe" in the two text boxes and press "OK".
Then select "To DOS" and click "Set Default" (This is very important)
Click "OK", "OK".
Close explorer.
Open regedit (Start > run > regedit > OK)
Search for "To DOS".
Delete this node from the "shell" folder (HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Folder\shell).
Close regedit and restart explorer and the problem should be fixed.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Weekend trip to Bheemeshwari.

Had a great weekend on the bank of the Kaveri at the Jungle Lodges and Resorts' log huts.
The tree nets, hammocks, sweltering heat, AC rooms, evening party, blackjack, pictionary, dumb charades, coracle ride, the skipped camp fire, the river side darkness and the (aargh) spots of flash lights, the singing, the morning trek, elephant rides, baby and horny elephants, river rafting, black jack in the jungle and beer in the car. A great weekend with fun people. Very happy :)

Snaps at http://www.flickr.com/photos/59787849@N00/

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Some snaps from my Bandipur trip with Andrew Tam and Rashmi on 17th and 18th Sept. 2005. One of my more eventful trips. Had a brilliant sighting of some 10-12 dholes (wild dogs). First time in my life. Paisa wasool in the first 15 minutes of the safari!
Then we were mock charged not once but twice by a group of 6 elephants and a calf! The first time at a safe distance, but the second time very close and from side on. That was interesting!

The view of the eastern ghats from one of the peaks and the largeish full moon rising from the east were superb. Saw a lot of gaur while returning.

Spent the night at MC Resorts.

Sunday dawned and the morning safari was the typical uneventful second safari after the successful first one. Saw nothing.

The decision to hitch hike up to Himvad Gopal Swamy temple was good. We were tired but had lots of fun. Pure pleasure was written on Rashmi's face as we finally got the last stretch lift from a Sumo.

The rest was rest as we got a comfortable car ride down to Gundulpet. The lighting of Mysore palace in the evening was beautiful to say the least. A relaxed evening. and back home by bus.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Andrew Tam's reasoning seemed sound enough for me to start blogging.
If enthusiasm wins over procrastination and lethargy, a few more words of arbitrariness may emerge.