April 20, 2006

Digital Denial

As i sit here postponing my most urgent tasks so that i can sit here and do nothing, i can't but help thinking that the one thing i'll miss the most after graduating from this college will be its LAN. Around 3 to 4 TeraBytes of the most diverse media one can find to waste time on, is not something to be taken lightly. All genres of all digital media: be it movies, be it anime, music, e-books, TV series, games, whatever you want, we have it here. Or atleast we can, in theory. From the most sentimental, heart-rending to the most grotesque, gut-wrenching. From the most completely illogical and hilariously funny to the most genuinely involving and mysterious. Oscar winners, Grammy winners, Raspberry winners, Top 100, Bottom 100... you get the point.

Millions of megabytes of mind-numbing media. To waste time on, to ponder on, to pass judgement on. Or just lose yourself in. Imagine yourself waking up early one morning just to check whether this great movie you put up for download has finished yet or not. Or falling in love with this "simply too good to be true" music score. Or banging your head against the table so hard after you've read an e-book. None of these things is an exaggeration. I have seen this happen. In an age and place where we can't yet teleport to our most favourite country, we still have all the tv series or all the software that releases there... pirated. That, is again, a different issue. If one were to restrict all media on the lan to be strictly copyrighted versions, maybe there'd be total anarchy. Not so much because we have to pay for those things as much as because we just won't have that much media for so many people to gorge on. They'd become zombies, with pcs that don't have anything to show.

Or, on the other hand, they could make themselves useful. Like go out and play sports for a change. Or even read! No this is not wishful thinking. Try cutting out a student from his pc, and see what happens. He wont be able to bear it for a week. But after that, he'll realize there are other things which are actually much more useful. Like going to the lab and getting in touch with people and what's going on. Or go to the canteen and get some fresh air. Play some sports. Even library for that matter is not out of the question. Atleast he'll be OUT OF THE FRIKKIN ROOM!!! Which is asking a lot out of pc-addicts right now. Like me. The moment i get a pc, what do i do? Login to Orkut. Of all the most lowly, desperate-attempt-to-get-attention tactics, i login to Orkut. And logout within 5 minutes, just to login three or four more times in the day. Why? because i don't want to do anything else. Because this was fun. Because this doesn't need you to do any work. Because this is an easy way to waste time, without having to think on what to waste. Because this way, i don't need to think about the most pressing issues in my life. Because i can live in denial peacefully. Which I'm guessing is the situation with most people in the hostel. Bear in mind, i'm not being judgemental or evangelist. I'm just stating what's with people these days.

And the digital media is just as good a place as any to live in denial. Somehow, this scares me. What did we set out to do, and what did we become? Even a failure is not as bad as one who totally denies that he didn't win. Or that he didn't try in the first place. And the reasoning behind this is that "because i didn't try, you can't really say i lost". That is really sad.

Is it just me? or is it really that there's sadness everywhere? Maybe it's the graduation blues, maybe its the project deadlines. Or is it just that everyone's so dissatisfied with what they've done/didn't do that they've become just sad shells of once energetic and colourful lifes? Or am i plain turning paranoid? I don't know. Another thing i don't know is why i post so many questions on my blog as opposed to answers to some of the things.

Try an interesting question: Ten years from now, looking at a person, will you be able to tell whether you've seen that person in college, as opposed to say recalling whether you've seen a particular movie in college? I know i'll remember more movies than people. Atleast whether i've seen a movie as opposed to whether i've seen a person. Fine, go ahead and judge me. Not like i care. But just be sure you're not like me either.

Is attaching feelings and memories with digital media really justified? I mean a pen or a gift somebody gave you, I can understand. You have feelings for it. But digital media? That which can be erased with a click of a mouse? Is it worth attaching so many feelings and memories? I know people who still can't get over the games they've played, or songs they've listened to once upon a time. Is that wrong? again, i don't know.

April 13, 2006

Seven - Saath - Sept - Sieben - Edu

Use this, and you'll find more words to fit into the header. as for me, well you get the point. Basically too lazy to do anything other than blogging and orkutting. and chatting. and oh ofcourse finding the most crappiest of all titles for my posts. oh and yeah, did i mention blogging?

too much time on your hands and too li'l motivation to work for your btp does that to you. anyways, here goes nothing:::

Seven things i'd like to do before dying:
1) Para gliding (I believe i can fly.. anyone?)
2) Kiss a girl. Seriously what's all the hype about... hafta find out...
3) Become my own multi-billion dollar self made man. Richard Branson-esque. (nobody said anything against wishful thinking..)
4) finish my BTP
5) own my own private jet
6) Become more original so that i don't need to think about how to fill up seven stupid things...
7) Have a li'l chat with Sam Chat and say "Hey, no hard feelings eh!"

Things that I can do:
1) Convince my btp partner anytime that i'll start work from tomorrow! (hehe.. no wonder!)
2) Go and play TT to my heart's content after i've convinced my partner! (bechara.. yeh padhega to bahut roega)
3) Think irrationally about irrational things. Like why are orkut testimonials the cause for virility.
4) span a whole vector space from a basis set. (That was just to confuse you guys. I have no idea.)
5) relate formulas and equations with anything. just for kicks.
6) waste more and more time on blogger thinking about what to fill in. these cliched items included.
7) Sit and do nothing all day.

Things that I can't do:
1) find enough motivation to do any kind of work.
2) keep a straight face when the other person's annoying me.
3) stop myself from laughing at my own stoopid jokes.
4) Coding. naah, not for me.
5) courtesy talk. the hey hows' it going doesn't seem to come naturally to me. atleast not sincerely anyway.
6) overcome my fears about change.
7) appreciate art. why? why do ppl pay millions of dollars for a random collection of geometric figures in different colours. that too on canvas as old as your grandpa's grandma.

Things I say:
1) Mammaaa....
2) Tu To .....
3) Kya bakwaas hain!@??
4) Sexy, man!
5) Nah-iiice....
6) bilkul Sahi hain.
7) kya haal hain?

Things I'd like to see in girls:
1) Quite obvious, no clarifications required.
2) sense of humour. or atleast laugh at my jokes even if you don't understand. and don't laugh when it's not a joke. srsly. that bugs me a lot more!
3) open-mindedness. atleast listen to the other's viewpoint before judging.
4) clear sense of propriety, as in what's crossing the line, and what's not.
5) intelligence. not too much, not too less. hate it either way.
6) aptitude to try out anything new.
7) a beautiful face to look at.

Celebrity Crushes:
1) Angelina Jolie
2) Liv Tyler
3) Elisha Cuthbert
4) Anna Nicole Smith (I know, I know, but then, well, you know.... ;P)
5) Emma Bunton
6) Arti Chabria
7) Sonali Bendre

1) Mrinal
2) Raj
3) Rahul P
4) Riddhi
5) Ranadhir
6) Rahul Bhaskar
7) Mohan

yeyyeyyy!! succesfully wasted yet another 2-odd hours and even added a post to my blog! :P

April 11, 2006

Coupla things i'm feeling right now


and before this blog gets any more mind numbing than it already is, lemme make it even drier by talking math. For those of you who just turn their faces away at the sound of "math", well here's something for you. Turn your face away :P

This was something i've been meaning to post since a while.. The other day i was just thinking about something, was probably watching a movie. So then it suddenly strikes me, how similar most plots look like, if you abstract out the minor details. Lemme try and explain. I'm assuming you know what are transitive relations. if A -> B, and B -> C, then A -> C, iff -> is a transitive relation.

Now think of cause effect relations. If A caused B and B caused C, then in effect A caused C. Same goes for effect, since if A caused B, then B is an effect of A. So cause-effect relations are transitive. My first assumption. I suppose it is provable, but i'm assuming it right now.

So what do we have till now? We assumed Cause - Effect relations are transitive. Which i personally think is a harmless assumption.

By now most readers would have already redirected away from this page, but if you still wanna waste time, and still want to see where this is going, best of luck! read on, 0 courageous net-surfer!

Coming to movies, lets talk about plots. I do not proclaim to be an ardent movie-goer. Nor do i understand the art and intricacies of movie-making. But from the few movies that i have seen, what i can garner is this. That plots are basically events that happen to certain characters. Be it murder, be it alien abduction, or simply an everyday Joe getting a promotion at his workplace. or buying a burger for that matter. You always have characters and you always have things happening to them. That's what a movie is about right? (Coming to think of it, can there be movies without players/actors/characters? Even documentaries for that matter have certain characters whom they showcase. Be it the panda or downtrodden cultures. As i said, i'm no pundit on movies, ask Maruti Koppola for more info on that. tee hee i just cudn't resist taking that dig at you :P) So we have plots, and plots have characters, and events happening to these characters. An intelligent/intricate plot is one where seeming disconnected events are weaved into a fine seamless web of happening. Seems like i'm talking mostly about mystery movies. But i support my statement by saying even in comedy movies, events still happen to characters, only here these events are funny. Same goes for thrillers/horrors. Now where is this all going?? what am i writing?? if you haven't already guessed, a li'l more patience, and i think you'll see it.

What i want to say is this. That movie plots could be quantified and analysed using a math basis. Call it Movie-Calculus if you like. A plot can be said to be a network of cause-effect relations, where the elements of this network are the events in the plot. For example, Jim Carrey getting a promotion is an event in Fun with Dick and Jane. This event, say A, causes his wife to quit her job, event B. Continuing this way, there probably could be an evaluation mechanism somewhere to say whether a certain plot is better or worse than a certain other. Or maybe this mechanism can be customised to the viewers choice. Coz sometimes, as intelligent as i might be, i just don't seem to get some movies, like this. Anyways. Coming back to the point, can this be done? seems quite possible to me. I'm not, i repeat not trying to quantify emotions. impossible to say movie X is funnier than movie Y. But what might be possible is to say whether X has a stronger plot than Y, or whether lose strings are tied. That is when a mystery is solved. Like in The Face on the Wall, a short story by EV Lucas, the plot is gripping, complete, and ends when the narrator stops the narration. But the final clincher is not the story, but the end note that the narrator leaves us with.

Now supposing something like this does turn up. Something which quantifies and defies the very nature of an experience like movie-going. Would it be ethical? I mean, if something like this did come up, then imagine yourself sitting at a movie theatre, analysing the movie frame by frame, and saying to yourself Oh so A->B, and C->D, but A->D. So does B->C? is that really what we want? or will it help us screen out the hundreds and hundreds of movies that these *ollywoods keep making day in and day out? so that the really good ones can be watched and enjoyed. Does it mean that Art forms can be "Scientified"? or that science is superior to art? or does the infeasibility of such a thing reiterate the age-old dichotomy, the one between science and art? lotsa questions.. think about em and comment me :P