Tuesday, April 30, 2002

Hindi films based on books: A couple of old rmim posts list Hindi films that have drawn inspiration from literature, both Indian and foreign...{movies based on novels} {movies from literature}
Phil Plait's Bad Astronomy catalogues different astronomical misconceptions about astronomy propagated by movies, tv and the like.

On a related note, here's a growing thread on ramli on Bad Astronomy in Hindi Films.
R. D. Burman humour straight off the Yahoo! Group: You know your spouse is not an R. D. Burman fan when ...{read on}
As Youth Let Their Thumbs Do the Talking in Japan a cyberweb of friends is only thumb strokes away...
Using Google to calculate Web Decay: Scott Ennis has a nice piece about how he used Google to come up with a freshness rating for Web content...{slashdot post}

Related: Digital libraries and World Wide Web sites and page persistence

Monday, April 29, 2002

Stories and Tools: Anil Dash explores web application development with the storytelling paradigm. Not sure if he makes a very good case for it, but it's still interesting reading.

Aks, Fair & Lovely ad bag Indian Razzies for unfair and ugly: Yep our very own Razzies...

Movies for the evening: Dard ka Rishta, Samundar
The Lifecycle of a Blog: Faisal Jawdat has kindly provided a diagram that will help bloggers position themselves.

Sunday, April 28, 2002

Pancham on eBay

After long last we have a hit on eBay. It's INDIAN SOUNDTRACK The Great Gambler BURMAN (NOTE: Link expires after auction ends): INDIAN SOUNDTRACK The great Gambler 1978. Legendaric Indian soundtrack by Rahul Dev Burman which contains loads of weird samples. 'O diwano Dil Sambhalo start of with weird moog effects, a fat Indian funk beats follows. Then it goes completely over the top: a female 'la la la' choir, violins and spanish trumpets followed by strange Hindi lines and jazzy 'chubabdooba' and big band intermezzo's. The weirdest beat lounge I can think of. The Dance music is again dozens of intro's put on top of each other, and since it it post 78, it has a fat sound. Schizophrenic stuff, anybody's mouth will fall wide open. 'Tun Kite din baad |Mile' starts with a super cool & weird lounge groove with many moog-like effects. Born to be sampled
A New Risk to Computers Worldwide: Yet another email virus ... and yes, this one is well supported by Microsoft Outlook and Microsoft Outlook Express.

'Star Wars' Fan Films Come Tumbling Back to Earth: More on the Lucasfilm-sponsored StarWars contest that seems to have backfired for copyright reasons!

In The Bears on This Message Board Had Enron Pegged Gretchen Morgenson discovers that chat rooms can also contain valuable morsels for investors

Like-minded people find each other on the Internet and form networks or armies. These armies have no border. Richard Hunter reveals more in an interview with the New York Times.

Ain't It Cool News is a movie geek's monument to films ... {nytimes}

Saturday, April 27, 2002

A profitable trip to the Indian store today. My tapes included: Samunder, Sanam Teri Kasam, Drohi, Jurmana and Dard ka Rishta. Also bought three audio CDs: A Musical Bondage{MIL: Songs composed by R. D. Burman and sung by Asha Bhosle}, Hits of Asha Bhosle {PAN: several rarities, including a few by R .D. Burman}, and Moods of Kishore Kumar {MIL: some rare R. D. Burman songs, including one from the ill-fated Duniya). The haul at the public library included a lot of CDs, a few books and two movies (yeah, two more!). Here's the list (as if you cared!).

Movies for the evening: Aankhen, Company, Sanam Teri Kasam

A little Company trivia: Neeraj Vohra (who played the music director in Satya) plays a film director in Company. A certain Neeraj Vohra directed the Akshay Kumar Khiladi-dud Khiladi 420. Same guy??.

More Company trivia

More Company links

{may 15, 2002: music review of Company}

Friday, April 26, 2002

Parochial marketing at its best again: Company is being marketed differently in the north and south (remember the different endings for the Mammooty-Mohanlal-Juhi starrer Harikrishnans?) ... {TOI}
David Cronenberg has a new movie out called Spider. It's screening at Cannes this year ...{salon.com}
Cannes will also feature a tribute to Raj Kapoor. At the CII Annual Session, I&B Minister Sushma Swaraj said "It is not the quality of our films but the marketing and distribution which perhaps needs to be strengthened". She also added that film producers must also focus on the needs of the target audience.. Yeah, right!

On a related note, here's a little interview with William S. Burroughs and David Cronenberg.
Screen news for the weekend

Debut Pairs: Hits and Misses: The article takes a look at some of the famous on-screen pairs launched over the years in the Hindi film industry. And if you are still wondering which one of the two in the picture is a girl, join the club or scroll down to the end of the article. Sheesh!

Jewel in the Crown: On April 17, 2002, eminent Urdu poet and lyricist Kaifi Azmi was bestowed with the highest literary honour, the Sahitya Akademi Fellowship...

In Criminal Obsession Neha Bhayana takes a walk down memory lane tracking 13 (aah the lucky number) films revolving around dadas and dons ...

Screen also has a report on Cannes.
May The Farce Be With Them: In a competition jointly sponsored by LucasFilm and AtomFilms, filmmakers were invited to submit spoofs, parodies or documentaries with a Star Wars theme to the competition. All content had to be no racier than PG-13, and have the necessary legal paperwork completed...

Thursday, April 25, 2002

Kerala State Film Awards announced (Thanks to my folks for dropping me a note in my email) Hope this is a prelude to the National Awards, whenever they are ...

Sanjay Leela Bhansali's 50-crore venture Devdas will be screened in the non-competitive section at Cannes this year ... {TOI}. Although this is a good thing for the Hindi (note: I didn't say Indian) film industry, I have my doubts about the film. Mr. Bhansali has great vision and ideas, but stumbles in his execution. At least one can expect the film to have a good look, as if that were all that was needed!
SKEWETS from Radha and Abhay was posted on rmim a long while ago. Here are the questions, with answers and comments from respondents. The topic: The 'other' singer in some famous and not-so-famous Hindi film songs.
Gates admits stripped-down Windows possible: Finally!
Remember All the President's Men and Deep Throat and The X Files?: Well, Linda Lovelace, the lady who started it all in Deep Throat is no more. {CNN} {The Guardian} {Cape Times}

And to add irony to the mix, here's the Washington Post

On a related note, something about the best-kept secret in the history of Washington journalism.
Marathon, Marathon 2: Durandal, and Marathon Infinity are, to quote Hamish Sinclair, more than just excellent games for the Mac OS and Windows 95 (Marathon 2 only), they tell a 'story'. It is a complex story revealed in a novel way through a series of computer interface terminals. As you play you find that not all the terminals are easily found and even when found the text presented is sometimes difficult to interpret. Added to this is the fact that the story is not told in a linear fashion. The past and present are intermingled, a jigsaw of facts which need to be pieced together to form a cohesive story. . His page on the names of levels and their meanings includes some nice word and phrase origins. Aah, the variegated sources of information.
Phone Numbers to Words Convertors: Try DialABC, PhoNETic and PhoneSpell. {thanks to the Internet Anagram Server}
The Workaround: 32 Steps to Frustration: That software does not always work correctly is roughly as surprising as finding a cockroach in a New York apartment...

Unearthing Information in an Avalanche of Voice Mail: Of the many tasks that await after a vacation, one of the most tedious is listening to a long string of voice-mail messages and sorting out the urgent ones from the hey-what's-going-on variety. ScanMail from AT&T Labs may change that ...

Finding Missing Children, With Technology's Help has become easier ...

Bouncing From a Meta-Museum to an Earthquake Forum: What do Soviet cars, bizarre album covers and Lego instruction sheets have in common? The Web, of course, where the collecting compulsion meets its natural handmaiden: the personal home page. Check out The Museum of Online Museums...

Alphabetic Roulette: Tricks of the Spammer: How do spammers find us no matter how hard we try to fudge our email addresses?

There's a new Google service in town (as of April 19, 2002) and it's called Google Answers. This is unlike other services like Ask Yahoo! or Ask Jeeves because it charges for the answers and has built a group of external researchers to respond to the questions. For between $4 and $50 (you set the price) you can ask a question and someone from Google's team of researchers will answer it.
The research team is not in-house; in fact, Google is currently searching for an training Google question-answerers. (Get more details on that at

New Google Answers Service Raises a Few Questions of Its Own

Entry for April 18th on Gary Price's blog

Wednesday, April 24, 2002

Put to the Test, Google's Still a Better Engine: In an informal survey, one reporter finds that the top search portal answers the tough questions best.

Movie for the evening: Torn Curtain

miscellaneous bits of news galore

Borders Group and Amazon .com announced an agreement today that would give their customers the option of picking up purchases they made on the two companies' Web sites at Borders Books and Music stores nationwide. The companies said the service would be available for the 2002 holiday season. (note: free subscription needed to access the link)

Last week, Microsoft agreed to support the e-Mexico project, a government initiative to bring Internet access within reach of 9 of 10 Mexicans by the end of the six-year presidential term of Vicente Fox ...{nytimes article}

The New York City Partnership saw a need to provide sophisticated expertise to hundreds of small businesses downtown and quickly recognized there was a network of people who could help, thanks to a combination of layoffs in the financial services industry and the demise of the dot-com industry. So, with the help of a foundation called Silicon Alley Cares, the partnership signed up volunteers (not all of whom are former dot-com employees) to work as "business advocates" providing problem-solving assistance to downtown businesses... {nytimes article}

Art Galleries have gone wireless and web-friendly as well ... {nytimes article}

Tuesday, April 23, 2002

Musical instrument for the day: The Cowbell

You have probably heard this in songs like Honky Tonk Woman by The Rolling Stones, Down on the Corner by Creedence Clearwater Revival, the little riff of Hallucinating Pluto by The B-52s and Mississippi Queen by Mountain.

For more information and photographs

{marsmusic catalog entry for the LP Black Beauty Cowbell}

{Expanding Your Sound Palette}
{June 16, 2002: The Cowbell Project}
A Brief Guide to Latin American Music and Culture also includes a list of ethnic musical instruments...
HMV recently released a sequel to their Kishore Kumar rarities collection. This one is called "Jazbaat - The Emotion". . Here's the track listing
1. Maine Tumse Kuchh Nahin Manga
2. Tum Bhi Chalo Hum Bhi Chalen
3. Chand Roz Aur Meri Jaan
4. Pyar Hi Jeene Ki Soorat Hai
5. Aadhi Ye Raat Jale
6. Main Akela Apni Dhun Men Magan
7. Jab Jab Jo Jo Hona Hai
8. Saath Mera Chhodkar
9. Jaaneman Jaaneman
10. Raah Pe Rahte Hain
{easybuymusic catalog entry}

Evening entertainment: The Golden Fleece from The Original Avengers and Yellow Submarine, the original American release (minus 'Hey Bulldog', plus the upbeat ending involving the Blue Meanies). For more on Yellow Submarine, check out extracts from Bob Hieronimus's well-researched book.

Monday, April 22, 2002

In his latter days Elvis ate enough calories to sustain 60 sedentary people, or two elephants. The Tallahassee Democrat food page used to have all sorts of Elvis-style recipes.... {the cuisine of elvis presley}
Reginald Rose, writer of the famous play Twelve Angry Men (remember: Ek Ruka Hua Faisla?) is no more. {nytimes obit}
Florida: America in Extremis: Cosmic coitus interruptis with sex, intrigue, missing bodies, risky behavior behind a veneer of normalcy, the humid specter of Cuba and capitalism operating at its tawdry finest
Strictly Film School is a dynamic, evolving personal homage journal dedicated to the analysis of landmark world cinema from an academic perspective: universal themes, symbols and imagery, historic context and artistic genres.

How to Spot an Internet Provider: Thomas Nolting, Karen Dion, Richard LaPearl and Sheila Noonan received patent 6,351,453 for Bell Atlantic for a method of analyzing phone calls to pinpoint high-volume Internet service providers.

Pay Features Gather Steam on Web: All across the Web, consumers are buying newly offered information and services. Beyond the long-established vices of pornography and gambling, the Web now offers a variety of paid services that include dating tips, weather alerts, college classes, financial advice, diet counseling, career help and high school reunion information, with fees ranging from pennies a day to hundreds of dollars a month...

Why Is This Room So Popular? Shh. You're About to Find Out: Just go to www.jaybill.com/whatswrong � that is, unless you have a weak heart...

A new study indicates that, contrary to prevailing wisdom, children are often as baffled by technology as adults.

Google Runs Into Copyright Dispute revisits the Google-Church of Scientology issue...
AOP: The 15% solution is a short interview with Gregor Kiczales of the Parc team that developed Aspect Oriented Programming and AspectJ. For more on aspect-oriented software development check out the aosd.net site, a comprehensive source of information of information for Aspect-Oriented Software Development, and supports mailing lists related to AOSD.
Dark Victory is an inside look at the new "Star Wars" episode: how the young Darth Vader fell in love and George Lucas rediscovered the heart and soul of his epic series...

Movie for the evening: DACAIT, Rahul Rawail's 1987 dacoit flick starring Sunny Deol.

Sunday, April 21, 2002

Why Open Source Software / Free Software (OSS/FS)? Look at the Numbers! provides quantitative data that, in many cases, using open source software / free software is a reasonable or even superior approach to using their proprietary competition according to various measures.
In Young, Single and Dating at Hyperspeed Warren St. John explores the increasing popularity of hyperdating and online personal ads.
Air-fare searching is an astonishingly complex computer task and it took ITA Software, Cambridge, MA to show the way. Set up a few years ago by a procrastinating graduate student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, ITA seems to be able to help the industry rewrite its future...{NYTimes} (free subscription required)

Get Your War On (alt: Get Your War On) has been described by the LA Weekly as an angry, post-Dilbert Power-Point presentation as written by a depressed David Mamet on a rap-music kick and is Like 'Dilbert,' but Subversive and Online. Created by David Rees on October 09, 2001, this harshly satiric comic strip follows the phone conversations of a multiracial group of cubicle workers during the war on terrorism.

Movie for the evening: Gurudev, Vinod Mehra's first and last movie as director. Over-flawed thanks to his demise before completing the film, but there's still enough to provide intentional and unintentional entertainment ...

Saturday, April 20, 2002

A quick tutorial on weddings and wedding customs in Tracking Tradition

Yet another painter obsessed with actresses: This time it's Manohar Desai. And his obsession? Chandni Bar. People seem to have too much time on their hands. Whither art??

And here's Sanjay Leela Bhansali on Devdas

"I don't know how to dance or sing, but in my films I do everything that's required of me as a good performer" says Mohanlal besides talking about Company. It's good to still have some humble honest people around.

Weekend library haul

A walk to the public library in the hot sun only to discover that the 3rd floor (which houses all the books and videotapes and CDs) has been closed for renovation for over a month WITHOUT moving the stuff out to accessible locations is clearly a damper. However a MexiFest at the Underground as well as a nice little chocolate sundae can do wonders for your mood.

Friday, April 19, 2002

Southern Rock Song for the Weekend Remember Mountain's Mississippi Queen? Check out this nice backgrounder
For a nice look at Himachal in Hindi cinema check out Keeping Cool on celluloid
Shreya Ghoshal (no relation to Anoop Ghoshal) is the new sensation in Hindi film music. Here's more about Sanjay Leela Bhansali's discovery and Aishwarya Rai's singing voice in Devdas.
Name fixations: Several Hindi filmmakers have been obsessed with naming all their films a particular way: Rakesh Roshan's films have titles beginning with 'K', J. Om. Prakash always made films with titles starting with 'Aa'. Another addition to this list is producer Mohan Kumar, who has film titles start with 'A' (Aaye Milan Ki Bela). This week sees his grand-nephew Hrithik Roshan in his latest production directed by Hollywood-ripoff-specialist Vikram Bhatt titled Aap Mujhe Achche Lagne Lage, a mouthful abbreviated appropriately as AMALL (I can remember my friend's theory on such films. The last strong contender was Rehna Hai Tere Dil Mein aka RHTDM (pronounced: R-H-tedium)). {more on Screen}
REST stands for "Representational State Transfer", a name created by Roy Fielding of eBuilt in his PhD dissertation. Why is this interesting? Well, in the context of web services, REST seems to be the architectural style for future web services, according to Paul Prescod. And while the W3C's Technical Architecture Group (TAG) argues about the safety of various flavors of HTTP programming, two icons of the Web have gone different directions: Google toward SOAP, and Amazon (whether they know it or not) toward REST {xmlhack newsitem}

Desi laughs

with Shilpa Athalye's contribution to rediff's Diary titled 'The manhunt'
Lost on 'Mulholland Drive' : Every year Roger Ebert joins students and townspeople at the University of Colorado on a five-day, 12-hour, shot-by-shot trek through a film via 'Cinema Interruptus'. This year he chose Mulholland Drive, my favourite film of 2001 as well. The results: The film still resists, defies and finally defeats logical explanation. It is impossible to produce a consistent precis of the film that accounts for everything. And there is an admirable reason for this: Like a dream, it does not have to make sense. . Well said. 'Nuff said.

The Projector Room is an online film discussion community for people with a critical mind and a lot of attitude. Get involved, critique and log out.

Ever heard of the Portsmouth Sinfonia?: Try Plays the Popular Classics. Advertised by Columbia as "Indisputably, the worst orchestra in the world". Intentionally making a bad record has been an art form and here's another example. Check out this excellent fan site for more tidbits, especially about the never-released Best-Of CD.

Other examples: Metal Machine Music/Lou Reed.
LyX and LaTeX: TeX and LaTeX are notorious for their complete disregard for the WYSIWYG paradigm. The output justifies the effort put in, but sometimes 'quick and dirty' solutions are the need of the hour. LyX addressed this very need. In What You See Is What You Mean (WYSIWYM) Tom Mrak reviews LyX.

Thursday, April 18, 2002

Anand Bakshi again This time it's a ScreenIndia article by Rajiv Vijaykar. Some the interesting tidbits:

Bakshi wrote the first recorded Hindi film songs of Shailendra Singh, Kumar Sanu (Yeh Desh/1984), Kavita Krishnamurthi, SP Balasubramaniam, Sukhwinder Singh, Talat Aziz and Roopkumar Rathod
Sang four of his seven songs as playback singer for the late R. D. Burman
His collaboration with R. D. Burman was his second most fruitful (in terms of number of films) {sidenote: Anand Bakshi is the lyricist to have collaborated with R. D. Burman for the most films/songs}
never worked with OP Nayyar, Ravi, Madan Mohan and Khaiyyam
Anand Bakshi wrote the lyrics for the first films of Sunny Deol, Jackie Shroff, Kamal Haasan, Kumar Gaurav, Rajnikant, Raakhee, Dimple Kapadia, Amrita Singh, Jayapradha, Manisha Koirala, Tabu (as heroine), Mahima Chowdhury, Namrata Shirodkar and Arjun Rampal. {previous post}

Blind Rage
And on that note another review of Aankhen. Glad someone noticed the Blind Rage angle.

Murder and Melody
As a tribute to the memory of Nasir Hussain who passed away recently, Vijay Anand recreates the making of Teesri Manzil, the one film he directed for the jubilee maker

Hindi vs. Urdu: Let this FAQ dispell a few wisps of doubt.
Nice blogs for the day
anu(e)scape: raves, rants, reflections

Finally, someone has had the decency to put out a code for bloggers to describe themselves as well. You can have yours after a baker's dozen of questions. Here's mine:
B2 d- t k++ s++ u+ f++ i o+ x- e- l++ c--.
Decode it here.

The Film Exchange Project
Described succinctly, you get a roll of film, take photos, and send your undeveloped film to your exchange partner. You receive an undeveloped roll of film yourself. Then you develop the film that's sent to you and post the 12 best photos on your blog. Aah, the possibilities.

In Terabye Territory, Brian Hayes reviews hard drive technology. A nice read. {original slashdot post}
Herb Sutter, a C++ luminary, recently joined Microsoft's Developer Platform and Evangelism Division, where he acts as a liaison between Microsoft and the C++ developer community. In this interview he tells DevX about future directions for C++ and his focus as Microsoft's official liaison to the C++ developer community.
Winners don't take all: Characterizing the competition for links on the web is a new NEC study web growth. It presents a new model, which can be used to predict and analyze competition and diversity in different communities on the web.
The General Public finally realizes that KaZaa is Spyware as Staff Writers at CNET News discover. Guess what? By some measures, the consent forms for the Brilliant Digital Entertainment stowaway are more complex than IRS tax forms... Now is that a consolation?
Microsoft Passport for National ID: As Brier Dudley reports the Feds are considering Microsoft's Passport technology to verify the online identity of America's citizens, federal employees and businesses. {original slashdot post} {How Microsoft conquered Washington}
Fade to Black: When IBM introduced its PC in 1981, beige became a visual standard without a lot of deep thought. It was functional, neutral, almost non-design, yet bland and proliferated for two decades, long after "it was obvious they were beyond boring". Dell has moved from beige to black for all of its desktop machines. Hewlett-Packard had shifted to shades of gray by 1997 and has since settled on silver and dark gray. IBM introduced its first black desktop PC in 1996 and completed its move to black in 2000. Last month Compaq announced that it was converting its consumer desktop PC's from beige, with some color panels, to black-and-silver designs. Next week, Gateway plans to introduce a series of desktop models with a non-beige color scheme. A safe bet: it will be dark gray or black. ...{NYTimes article} (free subscription required)

The Periodic Table of Comic Books hosted by the Department of Chemistry at the University of Kentucky matches elements to comic books referencing them. Their best collection? Oxygen. If your knowledge of the elements is rusty, oil it with WebElements from Mark Winters.

Wednesday, April 17, 2002

Google protects its search results : Google charged Comcast, the high-speed Internet access provider with hosting some accounts that had abused its terms of service by performing "automated queries." The crackdown cut a wide swath, taking out a block of IP addresses, shutting down the guilty and innocent alike. Lockouts are hardly unprecedented on Google, which has long banned computer-generated search requests that can sop up substantial system resources and help unscrupulous marketers manipulate its search rankings. Things like this can only portend a crossfire with several innocent Web surfers caught in between.

Inspired Indian Film Songs aka I2FS is Karthik's well-scoured collection of famous Hindi film songs and their inspirations. Direct rip-offs, inspirations, influences? There's no way of knowing. Listen to the clips and let your jaw drop in amazement at the eclectic choice of some of our music directors.
Internet Book Database: This slashdot post hints at the absence of a nice comprehensive free, unhindered by licensing restrictions searchable online database for books just like freedb for CDs, DVD Profiler for DVDs.
More on Georgia Tech cracking down on students accused of cheating and violating the Honor Code: The Washington Post follows up on the UVA term paper plagiarism report with another look at the massive Georgia Tech cheating scandal. For all that the Honour Code is worth, I'd rather agree with Jay Matthews when he says He wanted to learn. That was his big mistake.
IBM is selling out its end of the hard drive business and entering into a collaboration with Hitachi {full story}

Deutsche Bahn is suing Google for linking to and caching a Web site that provides instructions on how to sabotage railway systems hosted by a Dutch ISP. {Infoworld article} {slashdot post} {previous attempts to censor the site} {mirrors}

Movie for the evening: APNA DESH

Tuesday, April 16, 2002

PopoutPrism from Xerox PARC

Popout Prism is an intuitive, elegant tool to reduce the amount of time users spend looking for information in Web pages. By creating visual "popouts" that emphasize critical elements in Web pages, Popout Prism draws the attention of users to the right information.
If you are interested in cover art ripoffs check out the KnockOff Project.
The Kevin Bacon Game: The object of the game is to start with any actor or actress who has been in a movie and connect them to Kevin Bacon in the smallest number of links possible. Two people are linked if they've been in a movie together. The Oracle of Bacon at Virginia is the most comprehensive version of the game on the web. It even has a generalized version of the game that links any two given actors/actresses.
New Language for the Day: Lojban, the Logical Language.

Lojban is designed to be used by people in communication with each other, and possibly in the future with computers.
Lojban is designed to be culturally neutral.
Lojban grammar is based on the principles of logic.
Lojban has an unambiguous grammar.
Lojban has phonetic spelling, and unambiguous resolution of sounds into words.
Lojban is simple compared to natural languages; it is easy to learn.
Lojban's 1300 root words can be easily combined to form a vocabulary of millions of words.
Lojban is regular; the rules of the language are without exception.
Lojban attempts to remove restrictions on creative and clear thought and communication.
Lojban has a variety of uses, ranging from the creative to the scientific, from the theoretical to the practical.
The Covers Project is dedicated to building a database of covers ... and creating cover chains! Their longest chain currently has 26 links. It's a great project and even has an XML-RPC interface for geeks and freedb enthusiasts so that they can set their CD player to display cover information for any song they are listening to.
Google AdWords and Generalized Semantic Capitalism: Christophe Bruno decided to use Google's AdWords in an experiment to raise site popularity. There's a paen for more freedom for users of the tool and interesting notes on the value of words on the Internet. {read on}
Proliferation of the Google API: Googlematic allows you to search Google using your IM client (currently supports AOL IM and MSN Messenger)
Business pros flock to Weblogs: Weblogs, our very own popular online diaries, have heralded a new form of journalism. Even corporate professionals have begun to adopt Weblogs. And guess what, Weblogs actually can be used to increase worker efficiency.

How Do Children Use the Web: Usability guru Jakob Nielsen takes a look.

Monday, April 15, 2002

Consumers Union to Put Ratings System of Web Sites on the Web
Consumers Union, the nonprofit publisher of Consumer Reports magazine and ConsumerReports.org, one of the most successful subscription-based Web sites has a new division. The new division is Consumer Webwatch, the offspring of the organization's nearly year-old Web Credibility Project. Through its Web site, ConsumerWebwatch.org, which is scheduled to go online Tuesday, the new group will create guidelines for good business practices by Web sites and will rate sites based on their adherence to those standards. {NYTimes article}

The Internet Fraud Complaint Center has their latest report of complaints from Internet users online. {NYTimes article}
Literary Arcs online: TextArc.org, a new creation from W. Bradford Paley, turns a linear narrative into an interactive map in which the relationships between words that may be pages apart can be perceived at a glance. New interpretations emerge. Interesting application for simple text mapping. {NYTimes article} {slashdot post}

Related stuff:

The Lexical Freenet: connections between two words, concepts, or famous names
RhymeZone: a word's rhymes, synonyms, definitions
Hart of the Gutenberg Galaxy: A Wired interview with Michael Hart.
Instant Messages: Nothing Private about them: Employees at Sonalysts, a software and consulting company in Waterford, Conn. discovered how much of a risk casual IM messages posed to company policy and security. Jupiter Media Metrix says more than 15.6 million people send instant messages at work. Put these together and we have a lot of risk out there! {NYTimes article}
The End of Computer Rebooting: The time-consuming and often annoying task of restarting the computer every time it is shut down, or rebooting, may soon be gone for good, following an innovative development in computer memory research at Sharp Labs. {original slashdot post}
The owners of coveted billboard space in Times Square are trying to tangle the makers of the "Spider-Man" movie in their own web of woes. ask Lisa Bowman discovers.

Sunday, April 14, 2002

Id Software: more source code released

Download the source for Return to Castle Wolfenstein (note: this is not the engine code) from Bluesnews {original slashdot post}.

On a related 3dgaming is hosting an interview with Id's Robert A. Duffy. {original slashdot post}
Email transforms City Hall (subscription needed)
It promises to cut waste, shorten menial tasks, and make City Hall more nimble.
Weekend library haul: Thanks to some weekend showers and a trip to the Indian store (I now have three new additions to my RD Burman CD collection: Bombay to Goa/Waris, Pyar ki Kahani/Benaam/Phir Kab Milogi, Kudrat/Mehbooba) and a nice delectable Indian buffet at the Curry and Kabob (which frequently masquerades as a Chinese food joint as well), we visited the nearby Peachtree branch of the public library. Not too many hauls this week.


Friday, April 12, 2002

Movie for the weekend
For those Indians away from the city of dons, Mumbai, the latest dish Company served by Ram Gopal Varma may not turn out as thrilling as it would for the Mumbaiyya crowd...{rediff.com} Hope this movie doesn't do for Mohanlal what Dhartiputra did for Mammooty. Screen interviews Vivek Oberoi (the next Manoj Bajpai?), Ramgopal Verma, and Antara Mali. Interestingly, Ramgopal Verma's next film is titled Road. Daud came after Satya, and that crashed! Road has a titular similarity that I hope remains at that only. {ScreenIndia review: Apr 19, 2002}

Movie for the eveningPANIC ROOM at Phipps.
Google API beta release
Google just released a beta of their Web APIs that will allow programmers to programmatically search the Web and build interesting applications. DaveNet @ Userland has jumped to it with an article detailing the different uses for it. {original slashdot post}

Using the Google API with Radio and Frontier
SoapWare's list of Google API implementations
O'Reilly Network: Google Web API.
PyGoogle: A Python Wrapper for the Google API
Google Ego Trip

This has even become the top item on DayPop

Thursday, April 11, 2002

Phobias for Everything and a Britney Spelling Bee (subscription required) is a great article that covers a collection of over 500 phobias, the surfing habits of men and women, revisiting the Edwardian prejudices of the 1911 edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica, and misspelling Britney Spears

Movie for the evening: A Fish Called Wanda
After examining van Gogh's "White Roses" in the collection of the National Gallery of Art in Washington Roy S. Berns, a color scientist from the Rochester Institute of Technology, discovered that the van Gogh roses are in fact red and pink. Time had simply faded the color. Dr. Berns is working with the National Gallery and the Museum of Modern Art to develop a digital imaging system that will allow curators and conservators to create digital files that easily capture the fundamental color fingerprints of paintings Ian Austen presents this interesting prospect in In the Gloaming or a Glare, the True Colors of an Artist (subscription needed)

Doh! Rio blames it on The Simpsons

Alex Bellos writes in The Guardian that the Rio tourist board is preparing to sue Fox for damage to its international image and loss of revenue based on the ironic take on Rio in Blame it on Lisa. The issue threatens to become a diplomatic incident.
What storybook character are you? (yes, I took another of those tests)
Colleen Logan's Storybook Character Quiz tells me I'm Winnie the Pooh. Try out the
Storybook Character Quiz. If the link still works, you should be able to see the image here.

David D. Kirkpatrick writes that authors (represented by The Authors Guild) are rebelling against new efforts by Amazon.com to spur sales of used books, a practice that has become a major source of revenue for Amazon but pays nothing to writers or publishers. (subscription needed)
Weblogs and the future

An extract (reproduced below) from Tim O'Reilly's take on what the world will be writing about (and the venture capitalists and entrepreneurs chasing) in the years to come in his article Inventing the Future.

These daily diaries of links and reflections on links are the new medium of communication for the technical elite. Replacing the high-cost, high-octane, venture-funded Web site with one that is intensely personal and built around the connectivity between people and ideas, they are creating a new set of synapses for the global brain. It's no accident that weblogs are increasingly turning up as the top hits on search engines, since they trade in the same currency as the best search engines--human intelligence, as reflected in who's already paying attention to what.

Weblogs aren't just the next generation of personal home pages, representing a return to text over design and, lightweight content management systems. They are also a platform for experimentation with the way the Web works: collective bookmarking, virtual communities, tools for syndication, referral, and Web services.
Microsoft Has Shelved Its Internet 'Persona' Service
Microsoft has quietly shelved their a consumer information service (originally code-named Hailstorm and later renamed My Services). It was intended to permit an individual to keep an online persona independent of his or her desktop computer, supposedly safely stored as part of a vast data repository where there could be easy access to it from any point on the Internet.
Teoma Watch
ResearchBuzz has a positive hopeful review of Teoma. Can we forget the famous "Copperplate Flattened With a Steamroller" font?
Overture sues Google over search patent
Overture is evidently peeved with Google edging them out in syndicated advertising.

Wednesday, April 10, 2002

Planet Bollybob!

Even faster than Anupam Kher driving backwards! screams the byline on this site named for the omnipresent Aussie Hindi film baddie Bob Christo. Chockfull of reviews with an adequate mix of tongue-in-cheek humour and heartfelt admiration, this site explores several Hindi film classics and B-cult favourites alike that brashly defied the laws of film-making, physics and logic to push the coincidence meter beyond its limits: The anachronistic costumes and dramatis personae of Mard, the psychotronic appeal of Namak Halaal, the fantastic elasticity of Teesri Manzil, the plutonium thermos of the Bedi family in Agar Tum Na Hote, and the gallery of despair in Muqaddar ka Sikandar.

Movie for the evening: Double Indemnity
Kabhi Schmaltzy Kabhi Dumb

The DVD of K3G (as my good friend once said, "Any film with a conveniently collapsible title that describes the film aptly or succinctly enough must be a bad film") is out. Zulm.net has a review. Scroll down to the collection of related links and check out the K3G Bloopers.
Andrew Appel, professor at Princeton University, well-known for TIGER and his work in compilers provided written testimony that Microsoft can create stripped-down Windows. This of course goes against what Microsoft has maintained all along -- that it would be impossible to create a stripped-down Windows because so many portions of it are dependent on others. {report} {original slashdot post}

Galactic gasbag

Beneath all the pseudo-mythic Joseph Campbell hogwash, the roots of George Lucas' empire lie not in "The Odyssey" but in classic and pulp 20th century sci-fi as Steven Hart finds out in a Salon article. {original slashdot post}
Mondegreens (which is how I landed upon The Ants are my Friends)

A Mondegreen is the mishearing of a popular phrase or song lyric. Named for what appears to be the most misheard lyric around, KissThisGuy is perhaps the largest archive of misheard lyrics. Also check out Kathleen Gallagher's little collection. In Song lyrics can take on a new meaning, Linda Fink explores the etymology of the word and campaigns for its inclusion into the OED. Still interested? A Google Search can give you a lot of pages to feed on.

And in this mess, I found a rather informal introduction to blogs.
Best Page Status Message: The Ants are my Friends. Reproduced below.

This page
isn't here.

It's gone
off into the wide world to find itself.

It might
come back one day.

MSEB unit at Balgandharva to be pulled down
Bowing to public pressure, the civic administration on Tuesday finally decided to raze the Maharashtra State Electricity Board's switching station, at the entrance of the prestigious Balgandharva Rangmandir complex here. Way to go!!

Surreal Synchronicity
Was reading the Curt Sachs book yesterday night and slept with my head full of iambs, dactyls, and trochees. Today morning, I finish off a Stephen King tale from Everything's Eventual called All That You Love Will Be Carried Away. At one point in the story, Alex Zimmer starts analyzing the forms of graffiti he has picked up, looking for iambs and trochees. Jung called this synchronicity, says my friend, it can be explained using probability. It's still eerie.
Word of the Day (well, phrase rather)

non sequitur \NAHN-SEH-kwuh-ter\ (noun)

1 : an inference that does not follow from the premises

*2 : a statement (as a response) that does not follow logically from anything previously said

Tuesday, April 09, 2002

Lee Jeans Pitches Bare Bottoms
The ads are quickly gaining attention on the Web, even though Lee has barely begun the campaign. The article even mentions blogdex

Movies for the evening: The Big Chill and Brewster's Millions

On the two-year anniversary of the all-time high for the technology-stock-driven Nasdaq, many former dot-commers in this region are living decidedly not-com lives as Miriam Hill discovers.
Addiction or Compulsion?

The debate over whether excessive time spent using the computer is a compulsion or an addiction may seem like a matter of semantics, but there's more than meets the eye.
In Cyberspace, nobody knows your race unless you tell them Well not quite, as Henry Jenkins discovered.
Norman Jean and the Universe in a Nutshell

"Yes, she�s wonderful. Cosmological. I wanted to put a picture of her in my latest book, as a celestial object." said Stephen Hawking about Marilyn Monroe. Among other things.
Sinister, adroit, gauche?
In Fearful asymmetry, Russell Davies reviews Right Hand, Left Hand by Chris McManus. The book even has an official site.

Monday, April 08, 2002

Corny Hindi Film Song for the Day

Dhingtara Dhingtara from the film Hum Aapke Dil Mein Rehte Hain with lyrics by Sameer (are we surprised?) and music by Anu Malik (again, are we surprised?). Here's the RMIM post that contains the iTrans lyrics. What do we look out for? Try: (HS: Hema Sardesai | SN: Sonu Nigam)
HS: www dot dot com com
Internet pe teraa hii naam
Chorus: Dhingataaraa Dhingataaraa \- 2
SN: hey computer merii girlfriend
dekhuun isko subaho shaam

Kate Winslet and the Full Monty (WARNING: potentially offensive)

Kate Winslet is known for her penchant for baring all in most of her movies (off the top of my head, I recall Sense and Sensibility as an exception). IMDB Celebrity News today quoted her as saying "I like exposing myself. There's not an awful lot that embarrasses me. I'm the kind of actress that absolutely believes in exposing myself." .

The Naturist Journal has a post about her views about Iris Murdoch whom she played in the recent film Iris. Not too much there to quell rumours.

To round off this post, here's The Kate Winslet Nude Scene Extravaganza, a dated but still very hilarious post on Whatever Dude. (PLEASE NOTE: Content may offend some readers)
Extra cut discovered on Bollywood record

Fancy headline isn't it? Nothing ground-breaking. Just discovered that the soundtrack CD of A. R. Rahman's score for Subhash Ghai's confused Taal has an extra song titled "Kya Dekh Rahe Ho Tum". If you have heard it, you will agree with me that owners of the audio cassette were better off with the omission. As the Planet Bollywood review puts it There isn't much to write about this one.
100 Best Characters in Fiction Since 1900 From Book magazine, March/April 2002 presents Book magazine's list of the 100 best fictional characters of the 20th century. There's also a link to the audio feed of the Talk of the Nation capsule where host Neal Conan discusses these characters with judges and listeners.
Remember Chacha Chaudhary

Every Die-Hard Criminal, Ruffian, Pick Pocketer, Small-time Goon knows for sure that it is better not to mess with that old man, wearing a red turban, walking with his dog, because he is none other than legendary CHACHA CHAUDHARY. With a brain sharper than a needle and faster than a super-computer, he can make the deadliest criminal bite dust. A man from Jupiter and his friend SABU, occasionally provides his extra-ordinary muscle power in CHACHA CHAUDHARY's frequent clashes with criminals. Darling of Indian masses CHACHA CHAUDHARY is adventure and laughter rolled into one.{more here} Check out the right sidebar on that page or on Comics World to access the other legendary creations from Diamond Comics.
Google's Toughest Search Is for a Business Model by Saul Hansell (subscription needed)
Flashback: When Nadeem Shravan were on their way to success
Just unearthed this hilarious, no make that howlarious article on composer duo Nadeem-Shravan making it big. Here are a few extracts:

[They] are all set to soon make waves in the world of music. And thanks are mostly due to Mithun Chakravorty ,'the Indian Jackson '

Long associated with B- grade films, the duo has finally made it to the A- grade with 'Ilaaka', 'Lashkar' ,'Zulm Ko Jala Doonga', 'Bebassi', 'Jigarwala', among others.

"The sound we are producing now is mind- blowing . Absolutely top numbers, aimed at the teenage crowds. And I feel sure audience in India and abroad will absolutely freak out on Mithunji's album."
Panic Room
A few articles on the #1 movie in the States right now: David 'Se7en/Fight Club' Fincher's new offering Panic Room:
Home Invasion by Christopher Probst
PLF Previsualizes 'Panic Room' by Katie Makal
Internet Content Backup
The Internet Archive is building a digital library of Internet sites and other cultural artifacts in digital form. Like a paper library, we provide free access to researchers, historians, scholars, and the general public. The Internet Archive, working with Alexa Internet, has created the Wayback Machine. The Wayback Machine makes it possible to surf pages stored in the Internet Archive's web archive. The Wayback Machine was unveiled on October 24th at Berkeley's Bancroft Library.

Pro-Bollywood quote for the day

"The charm of Bollywood movies is that even a child can watch them. Or an adult can too. Bollywood can play to everyone." (Baz Luhrmann, director of Moulin Rouge) {from SCREEN}
Press Play to Access the Future

The Los Angeles Times is running an interesting article on the impact that DVDs have had on moviegoers and moviemakers alike. {from slashdot}
Ten real Rahman classics: Sthithaprajna digs up 10 Rahman rarities overshadowed by his popular songs.
Blindman's Buff and American Chai

Talented actor and National Award winner Paresh Rawal had two releases last Friday. The first was Aankhen which with its intriguingly different plotline and star cast. The second was American Chai which places the timeless tale of an immigrant's son who angers his father by breaking with tradition to pursue a career in popular music in the context of a New Jersey family of Indian background. {New York Times review} {Village Voice}

Trivia: Debutant director Vipul Shah based Aankhen on the Gujarati play Andhla Pato(Blindman's Buff) by writer Aatish Kapadia (better known as the scriptwriter for the TV show Ek Mahal Ho Sapnon Ka based on popular Gujarati serial, Sapnana Vavetar, which he wrote too, and as the writer of Indra Kumar's Mann), first staged in 1992. The film was originally titled All the Best. Incidentally, All the Best was the name of a popular Marathi play (one of the numerous casts includes now-famous director Mahesh Manjrekar) supposedly based on a Kannada play (the head spins) about a blind man, a deaf man and a mute who fall for the same girl. A David Dhawan adaptation titled Raju Raja Ram starring Jackie Shroff, Govinda, Salman Khan (who dropped out) and Madhuri Dixit (who made way for Manisha Koirala) was in the pipeline. Wonder what happened to it...

Sunday, April 07, 2002

Daylight Savings kicked in at 0200 EST today morning. A day of chaos, which may spill into tomorrow for the unaware. WebExhibits has a nice set of articles on Daylight Savings across the world.
What kind of band instrument are you?
Rahel's Band Quiz tells me I'm a clarinet. Try out The Band Quiz.

Google upgrades the Web {Sat, Aug 18, 2001; by Dave Winer} Quietly, without much fanfare, Google is upgrading the Web. They're indexing lots of weblogs [...] every day.
[Billy Joel] took classical piano lessons when he was a kid and then got turned on again eight years ago or so, when he listened to Beethoven. "I let these symphonies pound over me," he says. "Last time I felt like this was the first time I listened to Led Zeppelin. I felt puny. I am nothing, I am insignificant." {from A Piano Man turns from Pop to Classical}
BollyVista has a review of the most awaited soundtrack of the year, Sanjay Leela Bhansali's Devdas

Saturday, April 06, 2002

Indian Film Festival at the High Museum
The Indian Film Festival kicked off today at the High Museum today evening at 1900 with The Making of the Mahatma. The screening was preceded by a number of rather banal speeches of thanks, peppered with some intentionally and unintentionally hilarious anecdotes. The film was rather disappointing and it was just as well Shyam Benegal was unable to make it today to introduce the film. Pretentious background music by Vanraj Bhatia.

weekend library haul

(The books have links to their entries on Amazon.com and the movies link to their page on the Internet Movie Database)
Google to offer API
Google is about to start offering an API so that people can programmatically use Google through a clean and clearly defined interface, rather than have to resort to parsing HTML.

{ruby list post} {original slashdot post}
Lyricist/Writer/Director Gulzar won the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Filmfare awards this year. An interview captures his reactions. . Recently, Ashaji (Bhosle) told me that Majrooh Sultanpuri had once pointed out one of my mistakes to her. I'd written Tere pankhon pe moti jadoo. He apparently said, "Heere jade jaate hain aur moti lagaye jaate hain." I wasn't aware of this distinction. I acknowledged my mistake.
Lagaan leads at the IIFA: India's Oscar entry Lagaan topped at the International Indian Film Academy (IIFA) Awards. The article also refers to them as India's equivalent of the Oscars. Weren't the Filmfare awards supposed to be our Oscars (especially considering the great unpredictability that they seem to suffer from these days...)

Added September 09, 2002: Roger Ebert's review of Lagaan
Sa Re Ga Ma is back
The popular vocal talent competition is back and this time the first round of the programme requires the participants to sing an RD song before proceeding. The first participant of this programme sang RD's first
independent movie composition - 'Ghar aaja ghir aaye' (Chhote Nawab). Yet another tribute. {from a post on the Pancham Yahoo! group}

Friday, April 05, 2002

Pancham on eBay
SHALIMAR!!!!! Ultra rare Indian only 7" vinyl (note: link will become stale once the auction is over): Just when you thought there was nothing else to live for.... R.D. Burman's ridiculously rare 45 is avaialable for YOU to own with one simple and easy installment. Featuring the demented funk of ONE TWO CHA CHA CHA and the chutney sweet sound of BABY LET'S DANCE TOGETHER, this is a record that you will cherish forever.
r d burman bollywood burning train ill moog (note: link will become stale once the auction is over): this original indian soundtrack from 1979 on EMI contains our favorite bollywood track "the burning train" title music which is a mad moog track which sounds like giorgio moroder best stuff! with ultra fat moog basslines! don't miss this one as it is seldom offered!
Bollywood R D BURMAN DARLING DARLING (note: link will become stale once the auction is over): this lp is for those who are after the samples on these indian lps, no full funk tracks, but plenty of bass/horn and moog samples in a funk/70's vain pretty much all over the lp
(note: link will become stale once the auction is over):
Lambda lists an old article Python Patterns - An Optimization Anecdote by Guido van Rossum. Still worth reading.
N. Chandra revisited
As it turns out, the whole embarassing cheque bounce business was a case of mistaken identity ...{more}
Promising Hindi film this week

In Aankhen, a schizophrenic bank manager, after being fired from a job he served for 25 years, hires a coterie of blind men and the obligatory woman to exact revenge on his bosses {rediff.com review}
{Khalid Mohamed: 10:29:54 AM IST Monday, April 08, 2002 }

Dinesh Raheja reviews the language of love in Raj Kapoor's classic Awara
In 10 Best Films - And the 10 Worst Subhash K Jha revisits 2001 in Bollywood. The best list mercifully omits Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham, daringly includes Abhay and Gadar-Ek Prem Katha. The worst list clearly suffers from the limit of 10 -- surely, we had more promising candidates.
Is this what you would expect your PM to be doing?
Vajpayee, the poet, is the new MTV rage: The 77-year-old Premier dressed in a traditional dhoti is currently all over funky music channels such as MTV with a brooding Hindi music video based on one of his poems.
Rare instrument in a Hindi film song

The didgeridoo -. an aboriginal Australian wind instrument that Shankar, Loy and Ehsaan used in the introduction of Jaane Kyon Log Pyaar Karte Hai (Dil Chahta Hai).. sheer coincidence that the song was shot in Australia! {from a musicmagazine review}
Songs in the Mani Ratnam mode: Rahman gives Kannatil Muthamittal a score that carries forward Mani Ratnam's style of consciously juxtaposing traditional and modern musical genres. {review}
Things to do when you have too much time on your hands

Jason Farrell always told his customers that he could build anything using Flash and to prove his point he built his new home entirely out of Flash... {BBSpot article}
Slambook! is THE way to find out all about what your friends really think. Based on the original spiral-ring notebooks passed around class, slambooks contain a series of questions, one per page, that a visitor answers, that allow you to delve into their hopes, fears and desires. Once a visitor has signed your slambook, their answers are available for you and others to see. {source}
Blog Bits

Antidote to the Liberal Monotone: Blogging: Why are Web logs so infuriating to their shrewish detractors? Is it really the narcissism? Or is it the political opinions being expressed? ...Web logs are infuriating because they are thoughtful alternatives to the self-important New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post and their toady satellites, much of whose reporting has become hardly less biased than the bloggers'. Bloggers at least have the honesty to admit their biases up front. They don't pretend to be objective.

Talk is cheap and so is blogging: What is it about blogs that so confuses and concerns newspaper columnists? I think most columnists lack the experiences and conceptual categories to understand "the blog." Like a one-year-old baby grappling with the idea of other beings, the average newspaperman scribbling about bloggers can describe "the other" only as an ersatz version of himself.

In the world of Web logs, talk is cheap: Welcome to Blogistan, the Internet-based journalistic medium where no thought goes unpublished, no long-out-of-print book goes unhawked, and no fellow ''blogger,'' no matter how outre, goes unpraised.

Big media beats the blog drum: The traditional press (known in some circles as "old media") is jumping on the blogger story, writing about and drafting bloggers. The time seems ripe to recap the coverage and to describe what makes the blog so threatening to media incumbents: timeliness, willingness to credit others, passion, blogrolling, human interest, chronology, and devotion.

Blogging from 1750 to 2302: evidence that a) blogging predates press-powered journalism and b) the first blogger was an eighteenth century Parisienne's servant.
Upstart Search Engines Try to Topple Google: Google, which processes 150 million search queries each day, may look unbeatable, but its competitors see flaws... {New York Times} (subscription required)

Search Engine Users Look Less For Sex, Entertainment and more for business information, a new Penn State-led study says.
Director Puts on Wordless Hamlet: In a coming Washington production of the Shakespeare classic, actor-director Paata Tsikurishvili, from the former Soviet republic of Georgia, is doing the part with no words at all. His wife Irina's Ophelia and players of the other parts are equally wordless. {Yahoo! newsitem}
Living on Internet Time, in Another Age: ...Trying to keep up with Edison, who survived on little sleep and recharged with catnaps on top of his desk, was the kind of 24-7 existence that the dot-commers claimed to have invented. Edison lived on Internet time before the Internet, the computer and the transistor. {New York Times} (subscription required) {Yahoo News}

Thursday, April 04, 2002

Does a steep learning curve mean that something is easy to learn or difficult to learn? alt.usage.english thread
Charles Ellis maintains pages on heteronyms (words that are spelled alike, but have different meanings depending on their pronunciation) and antagonym (words that contradict themselves). Check them out.

The Great Indian Novel

What is arguably Shashi Tharoor's best book is a great read. An interpretation of the conflicts and thrills of the Mahabharat set in pre-independence India, the book mixes a rich vocabulary with lucid entertaining prose and poetry to provide both entertaining reading and allegorical commentary. Although not as subtle as Shyam Benegal's 1981 flawed corporate adaptation Kalyug, the book compensates with strong often self-mocking tongue-in-cheek humour.

Related articles:

The Great Bharata War in Recent Film and Fiction by Robert P. Goldman

Mahabharata as Literature, Performance, Ideology (includes links and references to existing interpretations of the epic in art)
Do you experience the loss for words (at least the official words) when you want to sing along to your favourite songs? Try LyricsStyle (one among the numerous sites that flood the Internet)
If you love horror movies as much as I do, you might be interested in HORROR-WOOD, the only monthly webzine covering classic and cult horror and monster films, welcomes you! Inside, you'll find lots of creepy cool information on your favorite classic horror films, as well as those "guilty pleasure" monster flicks. You'll also find film reviews, articles, book reviews, and John-John!
Curious about what the names of your Indian friends mean? Want to impress them with your knowledge? Check out Aarit and Prasad Naik's collection or these lists of names for baby boys and baby girls
Search Google in Klingon

Yes, it's true. Has been for a while. Set your search preferences or use the Klingon Advanced Search Interface. Think they made it up? Check out the Klingon Language Institute. Incidentally, my name in Klingon is wIjwI
Priceless H. L. Mencken Quotes to shed some warm sunshine on your day.
Corny Hindi Film Song for the Day

You are my Chicken Fry by corn farmer extraordinaire Bappi Lahiri. {lyrics in iTrans}
The lyricist (if I am not mistaken) is Maya Govind {more about her}
THE SPIRIT OF LAGAAN by Satyajit Bhatkal is another addition to the now-popular book-behind-the-movie collection (well the idea is old hat in the US of A). {easybuymusic blurb}. An appropriate companion to the book is the soundtrack (read: music, versus songs) album also titled The Spirit of Lagaan.

Wednesday, April 03, 2002

'Googleblog': Search Firm Gets into Weblogging {March 27, 2002} Google has also jumped onto the weblogging bandwagon, offering links from news organizations around the world to the day's headlines.{newsitem}
Tax benefits for fat people

Recognizing obesity as a disease, the IRS says it will begin allowing taxpayers to claim weight loss expenses as a medical deduction.{Yahoo newsitem}
SOX or Simple Outline XML was created because developers can spend a great deal of time with raw XML. For many of us, the popular XML editors have not reached a point where their tree views, tables and forms can completely substitute for the underlying markup language. This is not surprising when one considers that developers still use a text view, albeit enhanced, for editing other languages such as Java.
Free as in Freedom or Richard Stallman's Crusade for Free Software is a new book by Sam Williams. Chapters online on O'Reilly's website.
Karaoke machine's key to good singing: A Japanese company has developed a karaoke machine which helps to make the singer sound better. {BBC News}

Tuesday, April 02, 2002

Stealth P2P network hides inside Kazaa (CNET News)
A California company has quietly attached its software to millions of downloads of the popular Kazaa file-trading program and plans to remotely "turn on" people's PCs, welding them into a new network of its own.
The Netcraft Web Server survey for August 2001 - March 2002 is out.

Monday, April 01, 2002

April Fools Day

PigeonRank from Google. It can't get better than this! Last year they had the Multiplex. While on the subject of Google, Teoma rolled out a new version and look yesterday. {slashdot post}

You've got Blogs! AOL buys into homegrown media screams an article on The Register.

Vajpayee to tie the knot with social worker?

Sweetwater Enters the Plug-In Market
More Anand Bakshi
Exactly a day after the release of his latest film Kitne Door Kitne Paas, Anand Bakshi passed away, seeming to live the title of his last film released... {'A lyricist has to be a shayar at heart' by Dr Rajiv Vijayakar} {previous post}

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