Sunday, November 30, 2008

important facts about batteries

i was doing some research on rechargeable batteries a few days ago, and i uncovered a few nuggets of info (gleaned from many online sources, but unfortunately i didn't save the links at the time)

first of all, knowing which battery type you're using is important. most devices use NiMH batteries these days, but NiCd is still used in cordless phones, toys etc that don't need a lot of power. all cameras, laptops, cellphones, mp3 players etc. use NiMH batteries. batteries are usually the first (and most expensive) part of a laptop to fail. read on and learn:

  • NiMH batteries cannot be charged in a NiCd charger. they will simply explode. NiCd batteries can be charged in a NiMH charger though. Look carefully for NiMH written on a charger before trying to charge NiMH batteries.
  • NiCd and NiMH batteries can be overcharged by keeping them on the charger for too much time after they've finished charging. which means, using your laptop while keeping in plugged into the charger even when the battery is full (a very common practice) causes it to heat and reduce its life.
  • you can tell a battery is fully charged by it's temperature. when it's charging, it will be slightly warm, but when it's fully charged the temperature increases significantly. if the charger automatically switches off when the battery is full (look for an indicator light), the temperature will subsequently drop, but if not, temperature is the best gauge of when to switch off the charger.
  • do not drain a NiMH or NiCd battery below 10%. if you do, the battery goes dead and will refuse to be subsequently charged. you'll have to just throw it away. most electronic devices are intelligent enough to detect when the battery is down to 10% - they call that 10% as "battery empty" and switch off. analog devices like bulbs, motors, speakers, toys etc don't, so you need to switch them off the moment their brightness/speed/volume *starts* dropping (rechargeable batteries keep a constant voltage for the top 90% of their charge, and drop dramatically at the last 10%).
  • NiCd batteries *do* have the memory effect i.e. if they're repeatedly charged before they're drained to 10%, they lose that capacity, and take many rounds of full draining/charging before they can regain it. NiMH batteries don't have the memory effect, so they can be charged at any time, except when they're already full.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

live

terror-inspired blog posts are so cliched. they're either about (in no particular order)


  • what happened

  • the damage caused

  • the mindlessness of the perpetrators

  • the uselessness of bystanders/powers that be/cops/<insert pet peeve here>

  • pictures of the aftermath

  • shamanistic incantations of hope and "spirit"

  • anger/fear

well, i don't care about any of the above. the world is a sick place, and it gets sicker each day, with or without my help.

you know what i care about? i care about how i live my life. i want to live and die with no regrets. be it by old age or gunshot or losing my limbs and dragging myself across the road in a trail of blood till i bleed to death. on or off live tv camera.

if i'm not afraid to die, terrorists won't get any satisfaction out of killing me. and if they do, then i've managed to create satisfaction for someone else without losing any of mine. either way, i have nothing to lose, and i've already gained everything i need.

cheers!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

taking a bow

i've recently been awarded by winnie the poohi of "catawampus me" fame. while my french is not very good, i shall do my bit to spread the joy to the part of the blogosphere i know and love...but first off, a big thanks for this award!!! i quote winnie (meena in real life :P) verbatim:

Kris : Again, met over the blogosphere. What I really love about your blog is its apparent simplicity! and the honesty with which you blog :)


oh and the award:



This blog invests and believes the PROXIMITY- nearness in space, time and relationships. These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in prizes or self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers.


and now i shall present this award to some of my most "connecting" blogs:

"ideasyncrasies" by weirdisgood - the blog that inspired me to start. she posts once in a month, but straight from the heart. if i'm truthful, she's brutal :)

"makes no difference" by joylyn - i just love her wit and sense of humour. i used to almost be afraid of her in real life, till she told me she's pissed off with the world because it's the most satisfying thing to be.

"insight out" by the shmoo - another old favourite. talks about everything from her life to the world around her, to the front page of today's newspapers. never fails to make me laugh. or smile. or want to both at the same time.

"a story a day" and "poetry" by nothingman - both raw, uncut and unblurred expressions of a mind that may seem crazy, but is secretly buried inside all of us. not for the faint hearted. or the weak of imagination.

"just pazz" by paras - a recent discovery. this guy has a great sense of humour, and is a great storyteller. love his stuff.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

singularity of purpose

i've been riding for a few months now, and the experience has taught me, among other things, a lot about myself.

i've come to appreciate the adaptability of the human body/mind to quickly respond to situations it probably wasn't originally designed for.

to select the path of maximum survival in a split second.

to react faster than i imagined possible.

to react faster than i could even think.

to judge the gap between two vehicles when i hurtle past them at double their speed, leaning towards the slower vehicle as soon as it's safe to do so. the difference in my response when a collision is avoidable, and when it's not (thankfully only had a couple of those, and with *zero* injuries to me or my bike). without any conscious thought.

but one thing has struck me the most: the way my non-critical senses/activities come to a halt in a split second situation.

i call that singularity of purpose.

Monday, November 24, 2008

i love my job

you know you love your job if you can't decide whether to put a :( or a :) after saying "i'm up to my neck in work" :D

- kris, while up to his neck in work :)

Saturday, November 22, 2008

happy music

a couple of days ago, i was in a terrible mood. i was just pissed and feeling like fighting/making others want to fight with me. i rode like a madman, cursed people on the road, was super nasty with my friends, to the point when i realised the only way i could prevent any further damage was to simply stop talking to people till this phase blew over.

i also realised that the songs that were playing in my head were megadeth and marilyn manson. and the only songs on my mp3 player were by eminem (i'm listening to my music collection alphabetically - it's taken me 7 months to get to halfway-through-e :D)

at the end of a long, sickening, aggravated day of training at work, i went back to my desk. as i unlocked my computer, a song started playing in my head. walking on clouds by dj tiesto. it wasn't in my phone/player, so i googled it, found it on youtube and listened to the audio over my office headset.

after listening to it 3 times, i had an almost 180 degree change of mood.

i just realised, there are no angry trance numbers - and there are way more happy trance tracks than in any other genre of music.

dj tiesto saved my day - again!!! :)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

amazed by google

a couple of minutes ago i was listening to dj tiesto's "walking on clouds" (super-duper amazing song!!!), and i wanted the lyrics to go along with it. for some random reason, i couldn't remember the name of the song at that moment, and was feeling too lazy to check. as a random shot in the dark, i googled the first 3 words of the song: "chase fading moments". and the lyrics came up on the first page (not right on top, but it was 4th result - right in the middle of my screen).

best of all, i got the words wrong. it's actually chase faded days.

i'm not sure what's more mindblowing now, the song or google's ability to guess what i'm thinking. maybe both :D

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

dreamcatching

i had 3 dreams last night that i could recall. all 3 of them were noteworthy. two of them involved me, and another one was a story involving a random family whose faces i don't recognize.

when i woke up, i actually decided i'm gonna blog one of them, and i even decided which one - but i've now decided against it as the details are quickly fading away, and have already blurred to the point of being mostly incoherent.

still, there's one quote by my mom (in that dream) that's worth recording:

if someone insults me in your presence, ignore it and let it go. i'd rather laugh at him on the road than cry at your funeral.
- mom, in my dream, 20 minutes ago


bsaically part of that dream involved getting into a fight because someone said something about my mom. the strange thing is that this is not the sort of thing i'd do in real life anyway - but i guess dreams don't have to be that strongly connected to reality :)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

smarty pants

sometimes i simply crack myself up:

(insert arbit conversation here)
s: yeah, you smarty pants!
k: i know, i'm smarty pants. i look pretty dumb without my pants :P

Friday, November 14, 2008

indirect anonymity fail

a friend of mine doesn't like me linking to his semi-professional blog with his real name, presumably because of privacy concerns. i broke that rule a couple of hours ago, unwittingly i guess, but still.

anyway, my justification is that anyone who wants to know who he is can figure his real name with enough of thought. here's the process, for the lazy:


  1. every post of his has the footer: "posted by <x> at xx:xx PM..."

  2. quite a few of his posts have comments by a person with the same name <x>

  3. clicking on the comment takes you to <x>'s blogger profile page. it has his first name, industry, and country.

  4. scroll down a bit ad you will see that he also has a personal blog. with his full (real) name as the title


there you go dude. thanks for the timepass. it was a pleasure, really :P

Thursday, November 13, 2008

russian

my office dress code allows me to wear formals, semi-formals or "smart casuals" during office hours. so given the weather and my resistance to any sort of straitjacketing, i usually dress in smart casuals.

of course, i make occasional random exceptions. today was one such exception. so was september 22nd.

the reactions of some of my friends were rather interesting:

sneha: do you only wear formals on girls' birthdays? (september 22 was her birthday, and today is another female friend's)

vamsi: why are you dressed up today? what's the occasion? (to which my reply was "i only dress up on girls' birthdays" :P)

apoorv: dude!!! you look russian!!! (and he said it today *and* on september 22nd)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

social networking for offline world

i recently called my parents to my comp to show them pics of my cousins living in singapore/korea/australia. they love photos, especially of people they don't see often - so they enjoyed an hour or so of me clicking around my cousins' albums.

somewhere near the end of the hour:

dad: so many photos, doesn't your email get full?
me: no, this is not email. they put up these photos on the internet.
dad: oh, they made a website!
me: no, they didn't make the website. this site is where they put up the photos.
dad: so they put up their photos on someone else's site. don't they get corrupted? do they get viruses?
me: no no!! nothing of the sort. it's safe.
mom: oh!!! everyone can see all their photos!!!
me: no, not everyone. only their friends.
dad: so how did you find it? did they send it by email?
me: no, you can search. i found it from - he's already their friend.
mom & dad: ok. so many photos!!!
me: there are thousands. you'll get bored.
mom: but you're their cousin, not their friend.
me: i just call them my friend. then the site asks them if they're my friend. if they say yes, we're both each other's friends.
mom: how funny.

Monday, November 10, 2008

earlier start

i thought i was early when i reached office at 6am last month.

i broke the record by 15 minutes today. this photo was clicked as i logged into my pc (note the blurry wall clock: 5:50 am mumbai time :D)


apparently i wasn't the first guy in the office though (unless there are people who use the parking lot as free parking - can't say anything about that :P)


oh and the security guys were extra polite to me, going out of their way to say "good morning" to me. wonder whether it was just because of the surprise, or because they saw tears in my eyes.

btw, the tears were because of riding at flat 80 all the way from home to work - it's just one straight road except for the first and last 100 metres :)

too many times

too many times, you have been high
too many times, you ran away, in need to cry
too many times, your body lies awake
too many times, these pills you take
too many times, you woken up depressed
too many times, you put your life to the test
too many times, you've taken this trip
too many times, you have slipped
too many times, your body cant take
too many times, you made a mistake
too many times, you haven't realized
too many times, you mind became paralyzed

lyrics by kai tracid. almost seems like it was inspired by my life.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

go away!

i have friends who have been avoiding me. some of them admit it, others deny it. all of them expect me to treat them normally.

i'm very sorry, but that's not the way things work with me.

you'll only be forgiven if:

1. you stop avoiding me
2. promise never to do it again
3. i start avoiding you

yeah, all 3 of them, in that order.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

don't forget to wave!!!

my friend and i have arrived at a new way of saying goodbye:

friend 1: see you later, alligator!
friend 2: in a while, crocodile!

it's so funny i hope more people start using it :)

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

resolutions

made a couple of resolutions this sunday:

1. no dui (or rui, in my case) - simply not worth the chance of getting thrown in jail, however tiny.
2. gym starts this week. period.
3. start tracking my expenses again. now.
4. put the time management training back into practice. it failed the first time, but i'm gonna tweak it a bit to make sure that doesn't happen again.

wish me luck, fellows!!!

Monday, November 03, 2008

password secrecy fail

q: what's the best place to type my password, to ensure the exact opposite of secrecy?
a: in my team's group chat room, where all 30+ people from my team (and some 20+ people from outside my team who randomly hang around) are online.

and i just did it around 5 minutes ago.

the story is interesting:

my pc has been having a weird problem since today morning, where the ctrl+alt+del key combination has stopped working, so instead of locking my pc, i just switch off my monitors.

by force of habit, the moment i sat at my desk, i hit ctrl+alt+del and entered my password. i'm so used to doing this that i can type my password and hit enter before the monitors can get out of standby, so nothing seemed amiss till i realised they were switched off.

the last thing i checked before switching off my monitors and heading for the meeting was the team's group chat room.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

wicked!

a few days ago, someone called my beard wicked.

you know, i just realized, wicked is one word that doesn't sound evil any more. it just sounds super duper cool.

and wicked!!!