Monday, October 31, 2005

I got Sunny's package. I loved it! A book called Life of Pi, a LiveStrong wristband and lovely note. So, I got three packages in totality and I loved all of them.

I'm going to read Sunny's book and tell you guys what I think about it.

Apart from that, we had a halloween party amongst some of the interns. It wasn't too bad. If it wasn't for the annoying sore throat, I would have had some beer. Seems like alcohol is a part of Halloween.

I just watched a couple of 2nd season episodes of Veronica Mars, and looks interesting. I'm going to watch the rest of the episodes that I downloaded.

Tags: Life

[Listening to: You Oughta Know (Acapella) - U Penn Off The Beat - (4:05)]
ORNL has very beautiful landscapes like rolling hills with smoky fog. I really want to take pictures except I hate getting buildings and power lines in the picture. Its so annoying.

Tags: Pictures

[Listening to: Caught Up In Your Love - Ari Hest - Come Home (2:59)]

Sunday, October 30, 2005

The Abstract Factory: The only debate on Intelligent Design that is worthy of its subject

The Abstract Factory: The only debate on Intelligent Design that is worthy of its subject

This blog entry features a very descriptive argument against intelligent design.

I was just wondering about gravitons. Why do physicists believe in that particle if they have never seen it? The theory says that it should exist but we haven't isolated the particle yet due to its incredibly heavy nature. Food for thought.

[Listening to: Emotional - Diana DeGarmo - Blue Skies (3:08)]

speaking of records..

I just had the longest conversation with Goms. I talked to her for 200 mins which is 3 hours and 20 mins?!? I guess I would have gone longer if I wasn't tired and it wasn't that late. I don't remember if I talked to Bhavya for longer than that or not. It was a while ago. So, according to my memory, Goms sets the present record for the phone and Kelly has the record for longest conversation period. And I just noticed that Daylight Savings Time has just begun. Apart from talking to Kelly and Goms, my day was very unremarkable. Tomorrow is bound to be more eventful. I gotta ask Jenn how the party was.

[Listening to: Stanley Climbfall - Lifehouse - Stanley Climbfall [Bonus Tracks] (3:48)]

Saturday, October 29, 2005

3 New Delhi Explosions Kill at Least 49 - Yahoo! News

3 New Delhi Explosions Kill at Least 49 - Yahoo! News

This terror attack was way too close to home. Dad tells me that mum was in that shopping center earlier in the day before the explosions. I don't remember the last time we had such a major attack anywhere apart from the border. I guess I vaguely remember something about Mumbai.

[Listening to: Nobody's Home (Live Acoustic Bonus Track) - Avril Lavigne - Under My Skin (3:38)]

Friday, October 28, 2005

Is US becoming hostile to science? - Yahoo! News

Is US becoming hostile to science? - Yahoo! News

The debate has broadened to the effect of the conflict between evolution and intelligent design to a national or perhaps an international scale. I wonder if there is such a debate in any other country. This is alientating science from the generation to come. The statistics of people who are scientifically literate are dismal. It's extremely sad actually. The US intellectual/scientific class is being overrun by the influx of brilliance from other countries. Can you imagine living in a country where the majority of people are the minority amongst the people who think scientifically and understand the world around us? If the situation is not corrected, that's exactly what will happen. And people wonder why foreign nationals or international people get better jobs. It's the skill. It's the knowledge. It's the alacrity to learn, and adapt. It's hard to do that if people aren't motivated, and lazy. Maybe I am wrong. Perhaps I am stereotyping and generalizing. If I am, correct me.

*Update* Follow this Slashdot link to look at the comments posted about this article. Comments: Slashdot | Is The U.S. Becoming Anti-Science?

[Listening to: Orange Sky - Alexi Murdoch - Music from the O.C. Mix 1 (6:18)]

[Listening to: Right Through You - Alanis Morissette - Jagged Little Pill (2:55)]

MIT Fires Professor Over Falsified Data - Yahoo! News

MIT Fires Professor Over Falsified Data - Yahoo! News

Ethics in science is critical. Scientific misconduct is not tolerated in a community which is result oriented. This is yet another case of data falsification. How do they think they will get away with it? Seemingly intelligent people forget that the results need to be reproduced by other scientists to be verified. Can you imagine the condition of the students that were working with him? Can you imagine the shame of the department and the university?

[Listening to: Of Your Way - Jessica Harp - Preface (3:53)]

long days and stupidity

After doing a few handstands at work in my cubby, I am back to doing nothing. I just asked my mentor and he says that I can relax because he doesn't have anything for me to accomplish for the rest of today. I guess I like my relaxing day today because yesterday was too long. The five hours of talks, and then the multiple hours of homework. Working in groups like that can make people snappy. I think we should all understand the homework before copying down answers. I also think you should be able to defend your previous answers with better things that "I found it on the internet". It takes a lot of patience to deal with obvious laziness and stupidity. Stupidity frustrates me especially if an intelligent person is being stupid. But then what's the measure of intelligence? Scores on tests? Speed of processing power? Thoroughness? Probably all of them, eh?

[Listening to: Plea From A Cat Named Virtue - The Weakerthans - Reconstruction Site (3:51)]

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Back in the swing of things?

I had a ton of fun last night at Knoxville when Jenn and I went swing dancing. We got to dance with a lot of other people during the social dance. Jenn enjoyed dancing with others and following different leads while I got to partner up with differing follows and I feel like I'm getting back into the groove. The one thing that stood out last night was me leading a guy. I've never danced with a guy and he was trying to be goofy when he asked. It was sort of weird at first but I got over it. Jenn was laughing her butt off when she saw us dancing. I like dancing with Jenn because she has rhythm and relatively easy to lead. Plus, I know her so that makes me more comfortable to get close and try new things. Boy, I've been missing out. I hope we get to go back soon.

Onto other news, the presentation went well today. I felt like I talked too fast but my mentor said that I was fine and exceeded his expectations. He was, in short, very happy. Jenn pointed out one thing that I can work on. I remember having my hands in my pockets too much. I need to fix that when I talk to a crowd next. I was not nervous at all and I had rehearsed the presentation just once with my mentor. I guess I surprised myself too. The other talks were interesting as well.

I have homework to finish tonight. That's something I am not too excited about. I also need to study for the GRE. I need to write emails to grad professors. I need to do quite a bit. Hopefully they will get all done before the weekend is done.

[Listening to: Sister Don't Cry - Collective Soul - Hints Allegations and Things Left Unsaid [Atlantic] (4:02)]

[Listening to: Different But The Same - Ben Kweller - On My Way (5:01)]

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Nanotech: Is it soup yet? | CNET

Nanotech: Is it soup yet? | CNET

I was looking at nanotech news on and I found this link where it talks about the commercial nanoscience ventures. It's a lucrative technology to exploit and I hope it's still around when I finish my ph.d.

[Listening to: Home - Westlife - Turnaround (4:06)]

An update made to order

The last couple of days have been different. I woke up late both the days. Monday morning, we took the oppurtunity to photograph the lake in between two tree laden hills inside the ORNL campus by stopping briefly. We didn't realize that this could be interpreted as suspicious behavior till later in the afternoon, when a couple of people from security came by to question my motions for the day since I entered through the portal. I found out that someone has reported two separate incidents that they pieced together. The second incident was me removing something from the trunk of James' car. I have no idea how both of them were put together because taking something out of the trunk is nothing weird. Anyhow, James got questioned as well. Monday turned out to be very lethargic and gloomy partially due to the overcast weather. My eyes hurt so I couldn't watch my computer screen for very long without eyes watering. So, I took several short walks around the lab to refresh myself. Later in the evening, we found out that margaritas and homework don't mix. at all. Jenn and I went to a mexican restaraunt to do homework because we wanted something different to do. She wanted to go to restaraunt to eat while I had already eaten with James at the Soup Kitchen. I ordered half a bowl of chili and a loaf of cranberry something glazed bread to accompany the chili for 5 bucks. Anyhow, going back to the mexican restaraunt, we ordered a couple of magaritas for a couple of bucks a piece. I am constantly drinking my magarita while Jenn was talking on the phone and figuring something out. So, I'm drinking and doing homework at the same time. After an hour, it hit me and I felt like I didn't really care about the homework anymore. After Jenn finished her drink, we were incessantly giggling while attempting to work out homework. So after ordering another beer, and a fried ice cream (it was massive!), we gave up and left for home. We called our professor and told him that we had worked on it for long enough and it was getting very frustrating because the nomenclature rules for Inorganic Chem compounds weren't clear enough for an affirmation of our answers. He told us that it was ok, and we could clarify our doubts in class. We are going to do that today (wednesday) at 3.30 pm.

Yesterday was nice and relaxing. I should have studied more for the GRE than what I did but instead I spent all my evening with Jenn just hanging out with her. We cooked dinner which included hamburger meat, black beans, and rice. And yeah, we have been pracitising swing dancing almost every time I hang out with her. She is a quick learner and is picking up fairly well. I still have to look at my videos to teach her more of the stuff that Andi and I learnt. She should be able to do most of the safe lifts/aerials. I also got to talk to Britta and Gomathi for a long time which was wonderful. I got all the weekly updates from Britta because we hadn't talked for about a week. We called each other and left messages drawing at the same point. I'm glad our schedules overlapped last night. And I got Gomathi's birthday bash details. I don't think I've gone more than 2 days without talking to her. I know more about Gomathi's life than any of my other friends except for Britta. I need to call Jessi, Mary, Kelly and Komal. and yeah, Sean.

[Listening to: Only One - Goo Goo Dolls - (3:18)]

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Boing Boing: Principal says students can't keep blogs or MySpace profiles

Boing Boing: Principal says students can't keep blogs or MySpace profiles

No free speech? The right of the masses. Even the little ones. So undemocratic.

[Listening to: 93 Million Miles - 30 Seconds To Mars - 30 Seconds To Mars (5:20)] - Thinking Global - Thinking Global

I finally see some official debate on the internet governance issue between the US and the rest of the world. Yet another installment about this issue.

[Listening to: We Sold Out - Wakefield - Wakefield (3:02)]

Protecting the Presidential Seal. No Joke. - New York Times

Protecting the Presidential Seal. No Joke. - New York Times

Full text below.

Protecting the Presidential Seal. No Joke.

You might have thought that the White House had enough on its plate late last month, what with its search for a new Supreme Court nominee, the continuing war in Iraq and the C.I.A. leak investigation. But it found time to add another item to its agenda - stopping The Onion, the satirical newspaper, from using the presidential seal.

The newspaper regularly produces a parody of President Bush's weekly radio address on its Web site (, where it has a picture of President Bush and the official insignia.

"It has come to my attention that The Onion is using the presidential seal on its Web site," Grant M. Dixton, associate counsel to the president, wrote to The Onion on Sept. 28. (At the time, Mr. Dixton's office was also helping Mr. Bush find a Supreme Court nominee; days later his boss, Harriet E. Miers, was nominated.)

Citing the United States Code, Mr. Dixton wrote that the seal "is not to be used in connection with commercial ventures or products in any way that suggests presidential support or endorsement." Exceptions may be made, he noted, but The Onion had never applied for such an exception.

The Onion was amused. "I'm surprised the president deems it wise to spend taxpayer money for his lawyer to write letters to The Onion," Scott Dikkers, editor in chief, wrote to Mr. Dixton. He suggested the money be used instead for tax breaks for satirists.

More formally, The Onion's lawyers responded that the paper's readers - it prints about 500,000 copies weekly, and three million people read it online - are well aware that The Onion is a joke.

"It is inconceivable that anyone would think that, by using the seal, The Onion intends to 'convey... sponsorship or approval' by the president," wrote Rochelle H. Klaskin, the paper's lawyer, who went on to note that a headline in the current issue made the point: "Bush to Appoint Someone to Be in Charge of Country."

Moreover, she wrote, The Onion and its Web site are free, so the seal is not being used for commercial purposes. That said, The Onion asked that its letter be considered a formal application to use the seal.

No answer yet. But Trent Duffy, a White House spokesman, said that "you can't pick and choose where you want to enforce the rules surrounding the use of official government insignia, whether it's for humor or fraud."

O.K. But just between us, Mr. Duffy, how did they find out about it?

"Despite the seriousness of the Bush White House, more than one Bush staffer reads The Onion and enjoys it thoroughly," he said. "We do have a sense of humor, believe it or not."


[Listening to: Complicated - Daniel Bedingfield - Second First Impression (3:31)]

Business Opportunities Weblog | How Much Is My Blog Worth

Business Opportunities Weblog | How Much Is My Blog Worth

Have you taken this test for your blog?

How much my blog is worth?

My blog is worth $6,209.94.
How much is your blog worth?

[Listening to: Faith And Compromise - Matt Wertz - Somedays (4:04)]

Monday, October 24, 2005 - Where are your wireless manners? - Oct 18, 2005 - Where are your wireless manners? - Oct 18, 2005

We have embraced the mobility that technology imparts with renewed gusto without thinking about the etiquette which should follow in using it. This article describes the lost art of being sensitive to the environment around us. Abuse of cell phones in public areas is currently the largest problem however use of laptops is increasing in civic areas like parks and cafes with the advent of free wifi. We really need to take a step back and work on watching ourselves so that we aren't a cause for annoyance to the people around us.

[Listening to: Fed Up - Gob - Foot in Mouth Disease (4:18)]

Slashdot | Congress Pays You $3 Billion to Keep Watching TV

Slashdot | Congress Pays You $3 Billion to Keep Watching TV

This just makes me mad. These budget cuts in NSF funding directly hurts me and science research in general. Additionally, we are spending 3 billion dollars of friggin' television. What the hell?

[Listening to: Woke up in a Car - Wakefield - Wakefield (4:15)]

Sunday, October 23, 2005

BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | Taiwan to ignore flu drug patent

BBC NEWS | Asia-Pacific | Taiwan to ignore flu drug patent

If the Taiwenese government requested the drug from Roche and they wouldn't help. I would have broken patent rules too if my people were dying and commercialism got in the way. I believe in the good of the many when it comes to life or death. So, go figure, I'm mildly socialist.

[Listening to: 02 Weak And Powerless - A Perfect Circle - Thirteenth Step (3:15)]

Saturday, October 22, 2005

The 50 Dumbest Things President Bush Said in His First Term

50. "I promise you I will listen to what has been said here, even though I wasn't here." —at the President's Economic Forum in Waco, Texas, Aug. 13, 2002

49. "We spent a lot of time talking about Africa, as we should. Africa is a nation that suffers from incredible disease." —Gothenburg, Sweden, June 14, 2001

48. "You teach a child to read, and he or her will be able to pass a literacy test.'' —Townsend, Tenn., Feb. 21, 2001

47. "We both use Colgate toothpaste." —after a reporter asked what he had in common with British Prime Minister Tony Blair, Camp David, Md., Feb. 23, 2001

46. "Tribal sovereignty means that; it's sovereign. I mean, you're a — you've been given sovereignty, and you're viewed as a sovereign entity. And therefore the relationship between the federal government and tribes is one between sovereign entities." —Washington, D.C., Aug. 6, 2004 (Watch video)

45. "I glance at the headlines just to kind of get a flavor for what's moving. I rarely read the stories, and get briefed by people who are probably read the news themselves." —Washington, D.C., Sept. 21, 2003

44. "I'm the commander — see, I don't need to explain — I do not need to explain why I say things. That's the interesting thing about being president." —as quoted in Bob Woodward's Bush at War

43. "I am here to make an announcement that this Thursday, ticket counters and airplanes will fly out of Ronald Reagan Airport." —Washington, D.C., Oct. 3, 2001

42. "The war on terror involves Saddam Hussein because of the nature of Saddam Hussein, the history of Saddam Hussein, and his willingness to terrorize himself." —Grand Rapids, Mich., Jan. 29, 2003

41. "I saw a poll that said the right track/wrong track in Iraq was better than here in America. It's pretty darn strong. I mean, the people see a better future." —Washington, D.C., Sept. 23, 2004

40. "Oh, no, we're not going to have any casualties." —discussing the Iraq war with Christian Coalition founder Pat Robertson, as quoted by Robertson

39. "I hear there's rumors on the Internets that we're going to have a draft." —presidential debate, St. Louis, Mo., Oct. 8, 2004 (Watch video)

38. "Haven't we already given money to rich people? Why are we going to do it again?" —to economic advisers discussing a second round of tax cuts, as quoted by former Treasury Secretary Paul O'Neil, Washington, D.C., Nov. 26, 2002

37. "We need an energy bill that encourages consumption." —Trenton, N.J., Sept. 23, 2002

36. "After standing on the stage, after the debates, I made it very plain, we will not have an all-volunteer army. And yet, this week — we will have an all-volunteer army!" —Daytona Beach, Fla., Oct. 16, 2004 (Watch video)

35. "Do you have blacks, too?" —to Brazilian President Fernando Cardoso, Washington, D.C., Nov. 8, 2001

34. "This foreign policy stuff is a little frustrating." —as quoted by the New York Daily News, April 23, 2002

33. "I got to know Ken Lay when he was head of the — what they call the Governor's Business Council in Texas. He was a supporter of Ann Richards in my run in 1994. And she had named him the head of the Governor's Business Council. And I decided to leave him in place, just for the sake of continuity. And that's when I first got to know Ken and worked with Ken." —attempting to distance himself from his biggest political patron, Enron Chairman Ken Lay, whom he nicknamed "Kenny Boy," Washington, D.C., Jan. 10, 2002

32. "It is white." —after being asked by a child in Britain what the White House was like, July 19, 2001

31. "I couldn't imagine somebody like Osama bin Laden understanding the joy of Hanukkah." —at a White House menorah lighting ceremony, Washington, D.C., Dec. 10, 2001

30. "For every fatal shooting, there were roughly three non-fatal shootings. And, folks, this is unacceptable in America. It's just unacceptable. And we're going to do something about it." —Philadelphia, Penn., May 14, 2001

29. "I don't know why you're talking about Sweden. They're the neutral one. They don't have an army." —during a Dec. 2002 Oval Office meeting with Rep. Tom Lantos, as reported by the New York Times

28. "You forgot Poland." —to Sen. John Kerry during the first presidential debate, after Kerry failed to mention Poland's contributions to the Iraq war coalition, Miami, Fla., Sept. 30, 2004

27. "I'm the master of low expectations." —aboard Air Force One, June 4, 2003

26. "I'm also not very analytical. You know I don't spend a lot of time thinking about myself, about why I do things." —aboard Air Force One, June 4, 2003

25. "I know what I believe. I will continue to articulate what I believe and what I believe — I believe what I believe is right." —Rome, Italy, July 22, 2001

24. "We need to counter the shockwave of the evildoer by having individual rate cuts accelerated and by thinking about tax rebates." —Washington, D.C. Oct. 4, 2001

23. "People say, how can I help on this war against terror? How can I fight evil? You can do so by mentoring a child; by going into a shut-in's house and say I love you." —Washington, D.C., Sept. 19, 2002

22. "I wish you'd have given me this written question ahead of time so I could plan for it…I'm sure something will pop into my head here in the midst of this press conference, with all the pressure of trying to come up with answer, but it hadn't yet….I don't want to sound like I have made no mistakes. I'm confident I have. I just haven't — you just put me under the spot here, and maybe I'm not as quick on my feet as I should be in coming up with one." —President George W. Bush, after being asked to name the biggest mistake he had made, Washington, D.C., April 3, 2004

21. "The really rich people figure out how to dodge taxes anyway." —explaining why high taxes on the rich are a failed strategy, Annandale, Va., Aug. 9, 2004

20. "My plan reduces the national debt, and fast. So fast, in fact, that economists worry that we're going to run out of debt to retire." —radio address, Feb. 24, 2001

19. "You know, when I was one time campaigning in Chicago, a reporter said, 'Would you ever have a deficit?' I said, 'I can't imagine it, but there would be one if we had a war, or a national emergency, or a recession.' Never did I dream we'd get the trifecta." —Houston, Texas, June 14, 2002 (There is no evidence Bush ever made any such statement, despite recounting the trifecta line repeatedly in 2002. A search by the Washington Post revealed that the three caveats were brought up before the 2000 campaign — by Al Gore.)

18. "See, free nations are peaceful nations. Free nations don't attack each other. Free nations don't develop weapons of mass destruction." —Milwaukee, Wis., Oct. 3, 2003

17. "The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa." —State of the Union Address, Jan. 28, 2003, making a claim that administration officials knew at the time to be false

16. "In Iraq, no doubt about it, it's tough. It's hard work. It's incredibly hard." —repeating the phrases "hard work," "working hard," "hard choices," and other "hard"-based verbiage 22 times in his first debate with Sen. John Kerry

15. "The most important thing is for us to find Osama bin Laden. It is our number one priority and we will not rest until we find him." —Washington, D.C., Sept. 13, 2001

14. "I don't know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don't care. It's not that important. It's not our priority." —Washington, D.C., March 13, 2002

13. "But all in all, it's been a fabulous year for Laura and me." —summing up his first year in office, three months after the 9/11 attacks, Washington, D.C., Dec. 20, 2001

12. "I try to go for longer runs, but it's tough around here at the White House on the outdoor track. It's sad that I can't run longer. It's one of the saddest things about the presidency." —interview with "Runners World," Aug. 2002

11. "Can we win? I don't think you can win it." —after being asked whether the war on terror was winnable, "Today" show interview, Aug. 30, 2004

10. "I just want you to know that, when we talk about war, we're really talking about peace." —Washington, D.C. June 18, 2002

9. "I trust God speaks through me. Without that, I couldn't do my job." —to a group of Amish he met with privately, July 9, 2004

8. "Major combat operations in Iraq have ended. In the battle of Iraq, the United States and our allies have prevailed." —speaking underneath a "Mission Accomplished" banner aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln, May 1, 2003

7. “We found the weapons of mass destruction. We found biological laboratories … And we'll find more weapons as time goes on. But for those who say we haven't found the banned manufacturing devices or banned weapons, they're wrong, we found them." —Washington, D.C., May 30, 2003

6. "Those weapons of mass destruction have got to be somewhere!" —President George W. Bush, joking about his administration's failure to find WMDs in Iraq as he narrated a comic slideshow during the Radio & TV Correspondents' Association dinner, Washington, D.C., March 24, 2004

5. "If this were a dictatorship, it'd be a heck of a lot easier, just so long as I'm the dictator." —Washington, D.C., Dec. 19, 2000

4. "There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again." —Nashville, Tenn., Sept. 17, 2002 (Watch video)

3. "Too many good docs are getting out of the business. Too many OB-GYNs aren't able to practice their love with women all across this country." —Poplar Bluff, Mo., Sept. 6, 2004 (Watch video)

2. "Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." —Washington, D.C., Aug. 5, 2004 (Watch video)

1. "My answer is bring them on." —on Iraqi insurgents attacking U.S. forces, Washington, D.C., July 3, 2003


[Listening to: Fallen - 30 Seconds To Mars - 30 Seconds To Mars (4:59)]

New Scientist SPACE - Breaking News - Out-of-this-world sex could jeopardise missions

New Scientist SPACE - Breaking News - Out-of-this-world sex could jeopardise missions

So, sex that is out of this world is bad. Who knew? Well, I guess it's pure speculation upto now and people react differently under duress and isolation. We however don't have to worry about this right now because the closest human mission to Mars is beyond 2020. I know for a fact that I don't have to worry about this. But this article oddly piqued my interest.

[Listening to: Who's To Say - Vanessa Carlton - Harmonium (4:51)]

Friday, October 21, 2005

'I Will Eat Your Dollars' - Los Angeles Times

'I Will Eat Your Dollars' - Los Angeles Times

Even if they get one reply out out of the thousands of emails they send out, it's worth it. Ahhh, the good ol' scammers who will rot in hell for their sins. Mwwuuaaahhhhaaa!

[Listening to: Movies Of Myself - Rufus Wainwright - Want One (4:30)]

The VoIP Backlash

The VoIP Backlash

I don't like the fact that phone companies are blocking VoIP calls because there are losing revenue. They have to move with the flow. Traditional telephone companies are expensive and getting outdated with the advent of the internet telephony. Suck it fellas! I like my cheap calls, and I want them to remain cheap. I do feel bad for the companies because they have obviously invested a lot into their technology but tech waits for no one. Too bad!

[Listening to: Sleep - Imogen Heap - I Megaphone (3:46)]

Flickr: luminea's photos tagged with strobelab

Flickr: luminea's photos tagged with strobelab

This is a flickr photoset of Amy who studying in MIT. She's got pictures of a rose frozen with liquid nitrogen and then shattered by a bullet. It's pretty darn cool. She also has milk drop pictures. Check them out!

Here come the nanocars | CNET

Here come the nanocars | CNET

I love these fun little innovations in nano technology. They built transports on the molecular level which move like vehicles. Its tires are made of bucky balls(C60) and the nanocar moves with electric field manipulation. Kudos to the scientists at Rice University!

[Listening to: Finish Line - Yellowcard - The Underdog EP (3:46)]

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Harriet Miers's Blog!!!

Harriet Miers's Blog!!!

I wonder if this is real? There are too many exclamation marks. That makes me suspicious. For those who don't know who Harriet Miers is, she is the nominee for the US Supreme Court who has been in the news lately.

For the love of Indian Food

Indiatimes: Best Indian Dishes

I am going to blatantly copy my favorite meals from this website so that you don't get popups when you visit the actual site.

Tandoori Chicken

The Punjabification of the globe can be traced to this singular dish. Originally from Punjab, the dish is now part of the world's menu. Think velvety, succulent chicken pieces marinated in curd with subtle spices and a few drops of red/orange colour!

Elish (Hilsa) paturi

This is a classic from Bengal which some say originated in what is now Bangladesh. Hilsa is baked wrapped in banana leaf. Traditionally the fish packets were cooked alongwith with rice in a chula. The slow-cooking added to the flavour. The flavour and taste cannot be written of...but just has to be experienced!


Believe it or not, momos are actually a dish from Sikkim. Truly a pan-Indian favourite, with vegetarian or non-vegetarian dish and a unique red chutney, momos can be prepared steamed, boiled or fried with your choice of stuffing! Be imaginative.


Another pan-Indian favourite though different parts of the country have their own versions. In Madhya Pradesh for example, khichadi made with sabudana is the hot favourite, while in the eastern part of the country, lentils are the choice.

Malai kofta

This is a classic dish of Moghul origin. Panneer, kyoya, raisins, cashews-stuffed in a boiled potato-malai kofta is a sheer delight. The kofta is added to a spicy, creamy sauce.

Hyderabadi biryani

The Hyderabadi cuisine is the amalgamation of Muslim techniques and meats with the vibrant spices and ingredients of local Hindus. Hyderabadi cuisine is the ultimate in fine dining. Its tastes range from sour and the sweet, the hot and the salty and studded with dry fruits and nuts.

What better dish than the Hyderabadi biryani to represent this cuisine?

[Listening to: Sword And Shield - Sister Hazel - Chasing Daylight (5:05)]

In need for a altruist pharma company?

I talked to Jenn yesterday about AIDS and the quest for a cure/vaccine. I was wondering if there was any truly altruistic pharmacetical company in the world who would be willing to invest billions of dollars into this project. The reason was that if they develop the cure, I don't think they are going to get much returns in terms of profit as this would be free medication where it's needed the most. In a capitalist world economy like we have now, it makes no business sense to work on it if the governments don't offer compensation for the R&D. It's hard for me to imagine that we aren't closer to a cure if it wasn't a money issue. Drug companies keep making innovations in fields that have huge scope for profits but not for those which would give near zero return. I might research a little more into this to see how much of progress has been made in this front.

[Listening to: End of the World - Blessid Union of Souls - Home (3:42)]

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

A fresh dip in swing

I'm extremely excited. I went to the first swing dance thing at Knoxville. Jenn came along with me to the basic lindy class. I wanted to try the advanced but she didn't know the swing style at all, so we decided just to do the beginner class. she is a quick learner and has internal rhythm which was more than I could say for the rest of the people I danced with. However it was just wonderful to get out there and do it. I'm trying to see if Jenn would want to do it at least once a week so that I can meet new people and swing dance at the same time. Before we left, I got to dance with one girl who knew how to move and it was great! She spun like a pro, and I love dancing with girls who know how to move. I realized I was rusty in lindy and needed to look at my swing vids to refresh my memory. I might do that the next time.

This was one of the best nights I've had.

[Listening to: Drift on - Butterfly Boucher - Flutterby (3:05)]

A Prairie Girl: Flyin' High

A Prairie Girl: Flyin' High

Why would this flag be flying in Germany?

[Listening to: This Is Not An Exit - Saves The Day - Stay What You Are (3:58)]

Scientific American Mind: Smarter on Drugs

Scientific American Mind: Smarter on Drugs

Via The Need to Know

This article brings forth several arguments. I am going to quote certain excerpts and write a little commentary.
Drugs designed for psychotherapy can also be used to enhance certain regular mental functions. Just as Ritalin can improve the academic performance of hyperactive children, it can do the same for normal children. It is commonly thought to boost SAT scores by more than 100 points, for both the hyperactive and the normal user. Many healthy young people now use it that way for that purpose, and quite frankly, there is no stopping this abuse.

I am wondering if athletes aren't allowed to take performance enhancing drugs, why are students allowed to take cognitive enhancements prior to taking a major examination. To me, it seems like cheating the system. The tests however imperfect seek to test on the actual and not enhanced abilities of the students. I don't think students are always going to take the enhancement drugs through college and may face a bitter shock when encountering courses which are beyond their normal abilities.

He further argues that these drugs should be used.
Among the normal population are men and women with incredible memories, fast learners of language and music, and those with enhanced capabilities of all kinds. Something in their brains allows them to encode new information at lightning speed. We accept the fact that they must have some chemical system that is superior to ours or some neural circuitry that is more efficient. So why should we be upset if the same thing can be achieved with a pill? In some way, we were cheated by Mother Nature if we didn't get the superior neural system, so for us to cheat her back through our own inventiveness seems like a smart thing to do. In my opinion, it is exactly what we should do.

I think people have different skills and interests, and they tend to learn those things far quicker than stuff they are not interested in. If we all using the same drugs, what would distinguish us?

My guess is that, on average, adults will choose not to use memory enhancers or the theoretically more obscure IQ or cognitive enhancers. Why? Because when memory is in the normal range, we adapt to its level and set our personal psychological life in that context. Increasing our memory capacity might send a ripple effect across the landscape of our daily lives. After all, we spend a good part of each evening trying to forget many of the day's memories. Over a lifetime we have built up our personal narrative based on the efficiency of our memory and our capacity to forget. Any significant or even slight change in these capacities will have to be integrated into the backbone of that narrative, changing the mental life of a person.

I know that I like the fact that I can forget the bad memories and move on instead of being bogged down by them. I think we remember enough if the event was really powerful/traumatic. I do think that we are stronger through the trials of life.

Enhancing memory is one issue. Making people smarter--more able to contemplate complex ideas with greater ease and facility--somehow seems more problematic. Do we want a nation full of Harvard graduates? On the surface it seems insane. But the basic science suggests that superintelligence is not far-fetched.

So, do we want a world with uber brilliant people? Who would do the occupation that don't require lightning quick thinking? Why would anyone who is genius want to work in occupations which require brawn rather than brain? If everyone was brilliant, would people work hard any more?

I guess in the end, I am more worried about abuse than anything. If ours was a perfect society, then this would be a great oppurtunity to progress at the speed of light. Well, I think we will wait and see how our world adapts itself to the influx of exceptional and smarter people.

[Listening to: Fearless - Matthew Good Band - Last of the Ghetto Astronauts (5:15)]

Scientists develop cancer nanobomb

Scientists develop cancer nanobomb

Cancer nano bombs appears to be a promising technology to fight cancer. Think of tiny bombs exploding in the malignant cells destroying the cells and subsequently blocking the biological pathways to make more cancerous cells.
He believes the nanobomb holds great promise as a therapeutic agent for killing cancer cells, with particular emphasis on breast cancer cells, because its shockwave kills the cancerous cells as well as the biological pathways that carry instructions to generate additional cancerous cells and the small veins that nourish the diseased cells. Also, it can be spread over a wide area to create structural damage to the cancer cells that are close by.

This makes me wish I would have been doing some research in carbon nanotubes but I know that would have required Organic Chemistry which I haven't taken in college.

Read the article for the whole scoop.

[Listening to: Generator - Foo Fighters - There Is Nothing Left To Lose (3:49)]

Hot Abercrombie Chick Posts: intelligent design Michael Behe

Hot Abercrombie Chick Posts: intelligent design Michael Behe

The more I look into Intelligent Design, it seems like it has distanced itself from the religious version of ID. I just read Amanda's blog post on her thoughts on Intelligent Design and it was hard to figure out if she was pro ID or not.. But read her article because she did some research before writing her post. See what you make of it.

[Listening to: If You Leave - Nada Surf - Music from the O.C.: Mix 2 (4:51)]

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

I am currently listening to a swing jazz cd that Andi sent for my birthday. It's a wonderful CD! Thanks Andi! I know a few of the famous remakes but there are a lot of new fun songs in there too.

You should check her blog (Andi's Blog) out because she is in Germany and posting regular updates with pictures.

I gotta talk to her on the phone sometime.

[Listening to: Traffic Jam - Bugle Call Rag - Five By Design - Club Swing (3:14)]

Technology - BitTorrent: The Great Disrupter - FORTUNE - Page

Technology - BitTorrent: The Great Disrupter - FORTUNE - Page

BitTorrent is a great downloading tool. Whenever I miss a show, I just use BT to download it the next day and it is usually done in a few hours. I found this Fortune article about the creator of BitTorrent. It's a fascinating read.

[Listening to: Traffic Jam - Bugle Call Rag - Five By Design - Club Swing (3:14)]

'Intelligent Design' Advocate Testifies - Yahoo! News

'Intelligent Design' Advocate Testifies - Yahoo! News

I don't understand why people automatically connect Intelligent Design with God. What if it was just a extraordinary alien civilization? If people believe in God and Intelligent Design, why do they not believe in existence of life beyond the Blue Planet? Why is intelligent life in the Last Frontier such a hard concept to acknowledge?

[Listening to: Dancing Alone - Ashlee Simpson - I Am Me (3:55)]

Monday, October 17, 2005

American stereotypical male? *updated with stats link*

I had a mild argument with Rachel's boyfriend about his views on blacks. He thinks that he isn't rascist yet he makes statements like 80% of crime in the US is by African Americans. I was dumbfounded to hear such an outrageous statistic that he clearly fabricated. And then he mentioned that the US is successful because the Christian God was great. I couldn't believe that these statements were coming out of the mouth of an educated college student. No wonder is he so hated at college. If I was black, I would be terribly offended. I have met my first cultural imperialist. Here is what cultural imperialism means in Wikipedia:
Cultural imperialism is the practice of promoting the culture or language of one nation in another. It is usually the case that the former is a large, economically or militarily powerful nation and the latter is a smaller, less affluent one. Cultural imperialism can take the form of an active, formal policy or a general attitude.

He was also extremely enthnocentric. Also from Wikipedia:
Ethnocentrism (Greek ethnos ("nation" + -centrism) or ethnocentricity is the tendency to look at the world primarily from the perspective of one's own culture. Many claim that ethnocentrism occurs in every society; ironically, ethnocentrism may be something that all cultures have in common.

How do you think I should have approached his arguments? Ridicule, patience, mockery?

I found statistics about race and crime.

Homicide trends in the U.S.: Trends by race

[Listening to: Smelly Cat Medley - Phoebe Buffay and the Hairballs (feat. The Pretenders) - Friends Again (2:26)]
I've had a lot of time today while working in the morning to think about the life in general. Andi in Germany, Gomati, Britta, my friends here, GRE and grad school, family in india, missed oppurtunities, avoidable mistakes.

I also was thinking about Kristin. After talking to Jenn, I decided to give up my pride and just talk to her. I was really frustrated with her because she hadn't been able to make time to keep in touch. After I talked to her for the 5 minutes a few days after getting to Oak Ridge, we haven't spoken or emailed. I get worried about my friendships when I realize that I don't care enough to keep in touch and resign to let the friendship dissipate. I've done it before. Bhavya, Avinash, Jeshica, Becky, Amanda. I absolutely don't want to add Kristin to that list. I will reply to the birthday wish she sent and try to resurrect whatever is left of our friendship.

Bhavya is something I've been unable to figure out. I don't know why our friendship would have dissipated. We were best friends for 4 years. Incredibly good intimate friends. How does something like that phase out? I guess when one of them start dating someone else, it could. Maybe that's what happened. Maybe she felt like she had to withdraw. I didn't want her to. I told her not to. I am wondering if we ever loved each other. I don't even know if I knew what love meant when Bhavya and I became emotionally intimate. I guess it's a chapter now.

The two friendships I talked about above have a common thread. I don't know how to rectify the situation to bring our friendships back to original glory.

About friends here, I don't know if most of their love lives are going to survive. One of the girls has a very serious boyfriend who is going to propose to her. One of the girls has a boyfriend who is more like a best friend than anything else. One relationship has already bit the dust here and the person has already move on. We also had our hook up of the semester.

I'm glad Gomati decided on Coe. She is the one person that I've talked to more than anyone else by a long shot. Even Britta, which I didn't think was possible. I talk to her every day online or call each other every so often. She also keeps in informed about a lot of the gossip at school. She has had her share of rumors but she takes them well without getting depressed. Some of the boys there are really dumb and I wish I could knock some sense into her heads. I want her to be careful at school because reputations get easily tainted and are very hard to clean. And I am happy that I get to travel back with her to Coe because I've never had a companion for that long journey from home to school.

[Listening to: In My Head - Anna Nalick - Wreck of the Day (4:07)]

Saturday, October 15, 2005

a random metaphor usage

The mind of a bigot is like the pupil of the eye: the more light you pour upon it, the more it will contract.

The metaphor does truly capture the mind of a close minded bigot. The best part is that it uses a scientific metaphor!

[Listening to: What Are You Afraid Of - West Indian Girl - One Tree Hill - Enhanced Soundtrack Season 2 (5:07)]

Boing Boing: Disappearing rights mug

Boing Boing: Disappearing rights mug

I am very curious about the technology involved in making the disappearing ink with heat. I bet not everyone will like this product.

[Listening to: I Have A Dream - Westlife - Unbreakable (The Greatest Hits Vol.1) [ECD] [UK] (4:15)]

Friday, October 14, 2005

Nigeria, Microsoft Fight Internet Fraud - Yahoo! News

Nigeria, Microsoft Fight Internet Fraud - Yahoo! News

finally some official effort from Nigeria to fight spam and cyber crime, most famous of them being the 419 scam. This is the email that promises a 33% share if you help in bank transfers. So many people fell this, it's quite funny now.

[Listening to: Are You Gonna Be My Girl - Jet - One Tree Hill - Enhanced Soundtrack Season 1 (3:50)]
I can't wait till I can sleep in during the weekend. Unfortunately, the past few weekends, I've never gone to bed before 3 or 4 am. I would normally hang out with Jenn or Rach till 2 or 3 am and then Britta would call after that and I would talk to her for a while. And then go to sleep and wake up at noon or 1 am or 2 am. Even thought it's not a particularly healthy practice, I'd still do that because I like being around them. And my room mate uses this time to have some privacy while being around our new quasi-permanent third room mate.

I just talked to dad and wished him a Shubho Bijoya because it's the last day of the Durga Pujo. It's my culture's biggest festival and I guess is an analogy when compared to Christmas. I should get pictures from my parents to show what the celebration looks like.

[Listening to: If I Run - Semisonic - Great Divide (4:16)]

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Time of immiment hardship ahead

I was talking to one of my friends here and she was telling me about the time she put into studying and getting good grades. That got me thinking about the amount of work I put into classes. I've never really had to put much effort to get good grades in my classes barring a few classes. Every single math course so far except for Real Anaysis was within my grasp of understanding after just listening to the lecture and doing minimal practice. I can say the same for a lot of the physics classes. I'd say the toughest physics class that required the most attention was Quantum Mechanics because a lot of the math was new and we were barely grazing the surface. I've gotten A-'s or A's in all of the courses in my major fields of study and I am a senior! That's saying that I have done pretty well for 3 years even with tough faculty because the faculty had exceptional teaching skills. I have known for a long time that I learn the best from lectures rather than text books. I just can't grasp concepts while reading especially if they are brand new and advanced. I had that problem in chemistry with one of the chem faculty. However, I realize that I have to face this problem real soon when I hit graduate school because I will have to teach myself most of everything I need to know.

One more thing I've noticed is that I have never depended on anyone but the professor to teach me things that I didn't understand because usually if I didn't get it, no one else did either or had incomplete understanding. I guess that sounds like bragging but I don't mean to be a braggart. I was thinking about how I have been used by other people to tutor/teach concepts taught in class. Sometimes I wish I had someone like me for me, a fall back option in a peer.

[Listening to: Nobody Puts Baby In The Corner - Fall Out Boy - From Under The Cork Tree (3:20)]

taking a break

I just got done with a blitzkrieg of starting online graduate applications. I started making a list of schools that I want to apply to. They include Brown, RPI, Vanderbilt, NC State, Arizona State, Northwestern, UPenn, Boston U, Stanford and Caltech. I still have to start applications in Georgia tech, Cornell, Columbia, Duke and Purdue. I have to narrow my choices down to realistic ones soon. I know a lot of my choices are top schools and extremely exclusive. My grades are good enough, got a lot of research experience, highly active college life, and a research paper that is going to be published very soon. This brings it down to my GRE now. Nothing like added pressure. I bet my ORNL work experience is the biggest boon in my application/resume.

I got to give my eyes some rest. They hurt and water. Darn!

I still have to get my visas for the winter travel.

The pink's for the breast cancer wristband I got today. One more to go. Just the One poverty white band.

[Listening to: Zig Zaggity Woop Woop Pt. 2 - Big Bad Voodoo Daddy - Save My Soul (4:44)]

Where do I stand?

You are a

Social Liberal
(63% permissive)

and an...

Economic Liberal
(30% permissive)

You are best described as a:


Link: The Politics Test on OkCupid Free Online Dating
Also: The OkCupid Dating Persona Test

[Listening to: Rubber Mallet - Alien Ant Farm - TruANT (3:09)] - Special Reports - Back to School - Special Reports - Back to School

Look at what's hot and what's not. It's a fashion blog run by student journalists in a medley of colleges/university.

[Listening to: I'm Sorry - Jude Kastle - Junkie for Fire (3:21)]



I found this cool little project listed on BoingBoing. I should email this idea to my friends for halloween projects.

[Listening to: Love Lifted Me - Collective Soul - Hints Allegations and Things Left Unsaid [Atlantic] (3:49)]

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Random history happenings on Oct 12

Here are a couple of random things that happened on my birthday (Oct 12). (Via Wikipedia)


[Listening to: Cigarettes And Chocolate Milk - Rufus Wainwright - Poses (4:42)]

symmetry - October 2005 - gallery: jan-henrik andersen

symmetry - October 2005 - gallery: jan-henrik andersen

I never knew what quarks looked like. This site has all of the graphical representations up. Check it out. (via /.)

[Listening to: Water - Breaking Benjamin - Saturate (4:12)]

Yeah, I had to work on my birthday!

I got a few calls last night, a few emails today, a couple of ecards and few packages and cards in the mail that haven't arrived yet. I dressed a little better than usual to go to work and actually shaved. hehe. So I was clean and spiffed up. Today was an excellent day at work with everything going well. I got wonderful AFM scans for the most part and my mentor was happy with the images. We also narrowed down the parameters required for good thin film growth. We are going to eat out at Ruby Tuesday's for my birthday dinner soon.

I talked to Andi before she left for Germany. I felt sad saying good bye. I don't know when I'll be seeing her next. I might visit during spring break if things work out, so it's still up in the air. I am going to miss her so much. I just share a deep intimate relationship with her and makes me feel good. I sure hope we get to talk on the phone or something a little.

Today's seminar on near Zero Energy Houses was interesting. I doubt that it would get mainstream any time soon but at least there are alternatives. $0.72/day for energy costs is amazing though. Huge savings!

[Listening to: Punk Rock Princess (Radio Edit) - Something Corporate - Songs For Silent Movies [JP] (3:44)]

My big two-two

God, I'm getting old but I don't feel any older. I think eating out is in order today. I just have to pick the restaraunt. And I finish with a jingle, "Happy Birthday to me, Happy Birthday to me!"


[Listening to: All At Sea - Jamie Cullum - Twentysomething (4:32)]

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Sam's Archive - How to destroy the Earth

Sam's Archive - How to destroy the Earth

For those who want to destroy the whole Blue Planet (aka the third rock from the sun). It's mildy funny to read this.

(Via LiveScience)

[Listening to: Living Life - Ben Kweller - On My Way (4:02)]

The Odds of Dying

The Odds of Dying

The authors talk about the manner in which they calculate odds and why the numbers are so dynamic. It's a fun statistical article.

[Listening to: Magnolia Mountain - Ryan Adams - Cold Roses (5:52)]

Singapore and Katrina - The New York Times

Singapore and Katrina - The New York Times

I read this article on someone's door at work. It brings forth a sense of pride if I was a Singaporean except they have to remember that a country as large as the US would be impossible to manage like Singapore is managed. It's not possible. However Singapore has more at stake if a natural disaster was ever to hit them. It's an interesting article.

Singapore and Katrina
By Thomas L. Friedman,
New York Times
Sept 14, 2005

Singapore - There is something troublingly self-indulgent and slothful about America today - something that Katrina highlighted and that people who live in countries where the laws of gravity still apply really noticed. It has rattled them - like watching a parent melt down.

That is certainly the sense I got after observing the Katrina debacle from half a world away here in Singapore - a city-state that, if it believes in anything, believes in good governance.

It may roll up the sidewalks pretty early here, and it may even fine you if you spit out your gum, but if you had to choose anywhere in Asia you would want to be caught in a typhoon, it would be Singapore.

Trust me, the head of Civil Defence here is not simply someone's college roommate.

Indeed, Singapore believes so strongly that you have to get the best-qualified and least-corruptible people you can into senior positions in the government, judiciary and civil service that its pays its prime minister a salary of US$1.1 million a year.

It pays its cabinet ministers and Supreme Court justices just under $1 million a year, and pays judges and senior civil servants handsomely down the line.

From Singapore's early years, good governance mattered because the ruling party was in a struggle for the people's hearts and minds with the Communists, who were perceived to be both noncorrupt and caring - so the state had to be the same and more.

Even after the Communists faded, Singapore maintained a tradition of good governance because as a country of only four million people with no natural resources, it had to live by its wits.

It needed to run its economy and schools in a way that would extract the maximum from each citizen, which is how four million people built reserves of $100 billion.

"In the areas that are critical to our survival, like Defence, Finance and the Ministry of Home Affairs, we look for the best talent," said Kishore Mahbubani, dean of the Lee Kwan Yew School of Public Policy.

"You lose New Orleans, and you have 100 other cities just like it. But we're a city-state. We lose Singapore and there is nothing else. ... [So] the standards of discipline are very high. There is a very high degree of accountability in Singapore."

When a subway tunnel under construction collapsed here in April 2004 and four workers were killed, a government inquiry concluded that top executives of the contracting company should be either fined or jailed.

The discipline that the cold war imposed on America, by contrast, seems to have faded.

Last year, we cut the National Science Foundation budget, while indulging absurd creationist theories in our schools and passing pork-laden energy and transportation bills in the middle of an energy crisis.

We let the families of the victims of 9/11 redesign our intelligence organisations, and our president and Congress held a midnight session about the health care of one woman, Terri Schiavo, while ignoring the health crisis of 40 million uninsured.

Our economy seems to be fueled lately by either suing each other or selling each other houses.

Our government launched a war in Iraq without any real plan for the morning after, and it cut taxes in the middle of that war, ensuring that future generations would get the bill.

Speaking of Katrina, Sumiko Tan, a columnist for the Sunday edition of The Straits Times in Singapore, wrote: "We were shocked at what we saw. Death and destruction from natural disaster is par for the course. But the pictures of dead people left uncollected on the streets, armed looters ransacking shops, survivors desperate to be rescued, racial divisions - these were truly out of sync with what we'd imagined the land of the free to be, even if we had encountered homelessness and violence on visits there. ... If America becomes so unglued when bad things happen in its own backyard, how can it fulfill its role as leader of the world?"

Janadas Devan, a Straits Times columnist, tried to explain to his Asian readers how the US is changing.

"Today's conservatives," he wrote, "differ in one crucial aspect from yesterday's conservatives: the latter believed in small government, but believed, too, that a country ought to pay for all the government that it needed.

"The former believe in no government, and therefore conclude that there is no need for a country to pay for even the government that it does have. ... [But] it is not only government that doesn't show up when government is starved of resources and leached of all its meaning. Community doesn't show up either, sacrifice doesn't show up, pulling together doesn't show up, 'we're all in this together' doesn't show up."

[Listening to: This Is A Fire Door Never Leave Open - The Weakerthans - Left & Leaving (5:07)]

EBay's PayPal to buy VeriSign unit for $370 mln

EBay's PayPal to buy VeriSign unit for $370 mln ~ Reuters Business Channel |

Ebay has been very busy buying up other companies to expand. A multibillion dollar buyout of Skype and then a multi million dollar deal for Verisign. I wonder what's next on their shopping list.

[Listening to: What You Wish For - Guster - Lost And Gone Forever (3:51)]

Monday, October 10, 2005

Governors Parking SUVS As Gas Prices Soar - Yahoo! News

Governors Parking SUVS As Gas Prices Soar - Yahoo! News

This goes well with the previous post. They are setting good examples and practicing what they are preaching.

[Listening to: Goodbye To Romance - Lisa Loeb & Dweezil Zappa - (5:38)]

SUV Drivers in Paris Get Wind Knocked Out of Them - Yahoo! News

SUV Drivers in Paris Get Wind Knocked Out of Them - Yahoo! News

Those environmentalists can be such pests. I don't know if that approach would really work apart from annoying the SUV owners but maybe that's their goal. Something has to be done about people buying SUVs for urban roads. What a colossal waste of fuel!

[Listening to: Anything But Me - Lindsay Lohan - Speak (3:18)]

late realization

I wish I had kept better notes of the procedure I did earlier during August/September. I am rummaging through my AFM data and I don't remember some of the treatment details of the substrates very well. I do keep better notes now but the earlier ones are the scans I'm confunded on. I am making a powerpoint of all the scans so that my mentor can see the trends clearly and give me better instructions. I might post some of the JPEG converts of the AFM files.

[Listening to: Sister Jack - Spoon - Wedding Crashers (3:37)]

Macworld News: Splashpower wants to cut the charger cord

Macworld: News: Splashpower wants to cut the charger cord

Wireless power!! If this actually works, then I'm excited about the future implications of this technology.



I had heard good reviews about this movie. A couple of my friends, my brother and I watched this movie a couple of days ago and enjoyed the movie. It has yet another bleak outlook of the future. It portrays a galaxial hegemony who is experimenting techniques to control the masses and prevent revolts. The special effects were pretty cool and the two fight sequences with River was amazing! I would watch the movie again for sure!

[Listening to: Daylight - Coldplay - The string Quartet Tribute to Coldplay (33:02)]

The Firemonger Project

The Firemonger Project

The FiremongerCD 1.0.7 (October 5th) for Windows contains Firefox� 1.0.7, Thunderbird� 1.0.7 and various themes, selected extensions, plugins, utilities and a beginner's guide.

It looks like a great package. I love using firefox and prefer it over IE any day. I wish yahoo and msn would customize their services to firefox too.

(via /.

[Listening to: Bullet Proof - Goo Goo Dolls - (4:37)]

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Profs Discuss Harry Potter in Salem, Mass. - Yahoo! News

Profs Discuss Harry Potter in Salem, Mass. - Yahoo! News

This symposium might have been a fun thing to attend. I am feeling the urge to read all the books again. Unfortunately, I don't have the books with me. Now, I just need to find someon who does.

Selling Songs for a Song - Newsweek Technology -

Selling Songs for a Song - Newsweek Technology -

What a bunch of greedy capitalists! Hmm..makes me wonder why they haven't been hacked yet. You'd think they would be prime targets.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

BMW hands Pope Benedict keys to X5 SUV - Automotive -

BMW hands Pope Benedict keys to X5 SUV - Automotive -

I doubt the Pope would actually drive a car. He is too old and he has trained drivers. But it's still a nice publicity stunt for BMW I guess.

Friday, October 07, 2005

Clothes call |

Clothes call |

Hmm..I think the people who didn't like the shirt were Republican..

Intelligent Design: An Ambiguous Assault on Evolution

Intelligent Design: An Ambiguous Assault on Evolution

The link features a four part article about Intelligent Design and Evolution. So, the problem of us being a cosmic experiment by superior aliens (aka God) is? Well, I do believe that evolution is a more accurate description of the origin of species that Genesis or Intelligent Design. But how do we tell if we were planted and then evolved versus just plain evolved?

[Listening to: Nuclear - Ryan Adams - Smallville OST (3:26)]

The World’s Smallest Fountain Pen (LiveScience)

The World’s Smallest Fountain Pen

I was fascinated by this article because I had just attended a seminar at ORNL about nanopipes which can be used to transport fluids and other substances into objects. These nanopipes have a 40 nm diameter.

Here is a picture of the nano fountain pen:

[Listening to: My Immortal - Evanescence - Smallville OST (4:23)]

Inventor: Dead cat fuel story is dead wrong | CNET

Inventor: Dead cat fuel story is dead wrong | CNET

How many of you had heard about the German who could create bio fuel using dead cats. Sounds like he doesn't use dead cats after all. So PETA can stay calm.

[Listening to: Bread and Water - Sheila Nicholls - Smallville OST (4:41)]

Intelligence in the Internet age | CNET

Intelligence in the Internet age | CNET

The manner of quantifying intelligence has certainly changed. We can be more productive than ever before with minimal effort. This article talks about the changes in human intelligence since the advent of computers and internet.

[Listening to: You - Binocular - Smallville OST (4:48)]

Fun with defense (via The Need To Know)

The Need To Know: Fun with defense

She found an interesting reason for reproduction naturale.

Bush claimed God told him to invade Iraq, Afghanistan: BBC - Yahoo! News

Bush claimed God told him to invade Iraq, Afghanistan: BBC - Yahoo! News

Bush's crusade? If we did everything that the voices in our head said, the world would be a scary, messed up place.

[Listening to: Do You Remember - Jack Johnson - In Between Dreams (2:24)]

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Boing Boing: Archimedes's Death Ray realized

Boing Boing: Archimedes's Death Ray realized

This is so fascinating! I guess the myth busters got it wrong.

Guardian Unlimited Technology | Technology | Breaking America's grip on the net

Guardian Unlimited Technology | Technology | Breaking America's grip on the net

Looks like this conflict is reaching a climax. Lets sit back and watch the fireworks!
haha..some one just pointed out that i first asked "castration" to be unscrambled and then asked "peanuts" to be unscrambled. Now does that perfect sense? "castrated peanuts"!!

I just cracked myself up!

Top Ten Signs You're a Fundamentalist Christian (Via Evil Bible)

Top Ten Signs You're a Fundamentalist Christian

10 - You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of yours.

9 - You feel insulted and "dehumanized" when scientists say that people evolved from other life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.

8 - You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Triune God.

7 - Your face turns purple when you hear of the "atrocities" attributed to Allah, but you don't even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in "Exodus" and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in "Joshua" including women, children, and trees!

6 - You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.

5 - You are willing to spend your life looking for little loopholes in the scientifically established age of Earth (few billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by Bronze Age tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that Earth is a few generations old.

4 - You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs -- though excluding those in all rival sects - will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering. And yet consider your religion the most "tolerant" and "loving."

3 - While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some idiot rolling around on the floor speaking in "tongues" may be all the evidence you need to "prove" Christianity.

2 - You define 0.01% as a "high success rate" when it comes to answered prayers. You consider that to be evidence that prayer works. And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.

1 - You actually know a lot less than many atheists and agnostics do about the Bible, Christianity, and church history - but still call yourself a Christian.

This is just a great list!

Intelligent Design Trial | The Onion - America's Finest News Source

Hmm..Did The Onion get it right?

a real kiss ass

And she is pretty!

(via A Socialite's Life)

What qualifies one for the Supreme Court? - Yahoo! News

What qualifies one for the Supreme Court? - Yahoo! News

I have no idea what she has to offer to the Supreme Court. I bet there are better candidates out there.

Video Game Addicts Concern S.Korean Gov't - Yahoo! News

Video Game Addicts Concern S.Korean Gov't - Yahoo! News

This is of real concecrn. Someone in South Korea died after playing video games for 50 hours straight!

Google Localizes Online Maps Service - Yahoo! News

Google Localizes Online Maps Service - Yahoo! News

Google gets a better hold of the online map/direction service. They are making their search engine more powerful and informative. I love google! They are following Yahoo's direction but I like the hybrid/satellite feature in Google Maps.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

I have a few more pictures up. Follow the link Joy's Odds N Ends

[Listening to: Getting Into You - Relient K - Two Lefts Don't Make A Right...But Three Do (3:24)]

The Basic Laws of Human Stupidity

The Basic Laws of Human Stupidity

Laws of idiocy. Someone actually sat and wrote this masterpiece. Such constructive use of time!

(via Geek Press) - Professor Reviews and Ratings - Professor Reviews and Ratings

Great find. Has a lot of professors from Coe College. (Via Geek Press)

[Listening to: Overcome - Better Than Ezra - Before The Robots (5:22)]

How not to deal with being caught blogging about official work.

[Listening to: Criminal - Fiona Apple - Tidal (5:43)]

The World in a Glass: Six Drinks That Changed History

The World in a Glass: Six Drinks That Changed History

A fun article. I like reading about history, and this is history. I wonder what's the oldest spirit/alcohol anyone's ever found..

Austria Becomes Nemesis to Turkey Again - Yahoo! News

Austria Becomes Nemesis to Turkey Again - Yahoo! News

Austrians insist they're not being racist, xenophobic or intolerant of Islam, but merely pragmatic, citing economic and security concerns if the EU's borders were to stretch to Iran, Iraq and Syria.

This stands out. They definitely seem to be what they are denying. Such inflated ego.

courtesy: The Need To Know

[Listening to: Jason Mraz - Life Is Wonderful - Jason Mraz - Mr A-Z (4:20)]

Unauthorized Reproduction bill has been drafted - Booman Tribune

Unauthorized Reproduction bill has been drafted

You must be kidding! What moron would spend valuable time making this up?

Mystery Ocean Glow Confirmed in Satellite Photos - Yahoo! News

Mystery Ocean Glow Confirmed in Satellite Photos - Yahoo! News

Milky sea? One more of nature's mysteries.. If we were in the middle of such a phenomenon, it would be very spooky. Hey, that's good for halloween celebrations. It provides a perfect milieu for such a festival.

Space Tourist Says Trip Worth Millions - Yahoo! News

Space Tourist Says Trip Worth Millions - Yahoo! News

Multi million dollar trip. Someday, it will be as accessible as air travel. And that's the main motivation behind the X Prize.

Bomb Blast at Shiite Mosque Kills 22 - Yahoo! News

Bomb Blast at Shiite Mosque Kills 22 - Yahoo! News

This makes me boil like none other. Delibrate collateral damage is evil. Man, Al-Qaida members are so going to hell. These are some people who should be tortured and then killed slowly. OK, maybe not. But I hate extremists who bend religions to suit their will.

Honda Designs Car Friendly for Dogs - Yahoo! News

Honda Designs Car Friendly for Dogs - Yahoo! News

So what's next in the pooch world?

Whose al-Qaida problem? Sasha Abramsky - openDemocracy

Whose al-Qaida problem? Sasha Abramsky - openDemocracy

This article brings up the conflicting approaches of the left and right wings on the Al-Qaida issue. The author of the article was in both the cities (NYC and London) during the terrorist attacks. Her political views have shifted since those two incidents.

When it comes to the vision of world's future, I obviously prefer an open society with liberty than an autocratic system that the Islamic fundamentalists want to set up.

This also worries me because the Islamic fundamentalists are gathering momentum in Pakistan. It might cause political and cultural upheaval in the sub-continent thereby endangering the fragile peace negotiations in progress between India and Pakistan.

Ender's Game - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ender's Game - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ender's Game is one of my favorite reads. I fell in love with the series after reading this book and since then, I've tried to read all the sequels. I notice that I haven't read 2 of the 8 books to come out after Ender's Game. His books are drenched in philosophy, and his frame of reference of the direction this world is heading in. He used an interesting medium to discuss his political views. Writing about children who lead the war against the Formics popularized this book among younger kids. They probably looked on Ender as a fictional role model.

As far as his prediction of hegemony in the future, it's a distinct possibility. It's bound to happen when a single nation comes up on top, and influences the entire world. I doubt that hegemony is democratic so it's going to interesting to watch the world in the future as I age. Who knows, I might get to see a drastic radical change in world politics and culture.

The last book I read was Speaker of the Dead which seems to have caught a following in real life. This is speaking the truth and revealing everything about the dead person. It opens untended wounds and helps heal them.

This series is a must-read.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Yu Hu Stewardess: What would you like to drink?

Yu Hu Stewardess: What would you like to drink?

How many of us are guilty of what she lists? - Your e-mails: Rebuild New Orleans? - Oct 3, 2005 - Your e-mails: Rebuild New Orleans? - Oct 3, 2005

I don't think it's worth the hundreds of billions of dollars of investment to rebuild New Orleans. I would feel the same way if my home town got destroyed, and there was a possibility of it getting destroyed again due to the chances of recurring natural disasters. I value lives more that where those lives are located. It's a hard transistion to move from familiar surroundings, but it is possible and in this case favorable. I also agree with most of the replies about not wanting the taxes to go up to compensate for the rebuilding if it does happen. This is a pragmatic albeit harsh opinion. Books: The Singularity Is Near : When Humans Transcend Biology

I want to read this book. His hyperbolic conjectures and predictions of the future might provide interesting reading.
[Listening to: fields of gold - eva cassidy - (4:59)]

Boing Boing: Illustrations drawn in shower-hair

Boing Boing: Illustrations drawn in shower-hair


Some people do spend a lot of time in showers. Jokes aside, this art is kinda cool.