Friday, February 24, 2006

Maya and reality

I was just curious the other day what google would spurn out for the search on the above topic. The wikipedia article seems to be quite engrossing , and I haven't finished it yet.

I later laid my eyes on the first result of my search - a book 'MAYA - The world as virtual reality'. Thought I would provide the link for those intrigued and the sci-fi fans atleast. This book by the way deals with vitual reality in a computer science perspective, which I think would interest many.

An excerpt:
"In the world of modern science, consciousness is reduced to a fading epiphenomenon, left over after the brain has been physically explained. It seems to arise when matter is suitably organized, but scientists and philosophers have been unable to explain why complex organization should produce anything beyond complex physical behavior. Yet consciousness won't go away."
Well, a goldfish cannot even get close to how much we can explain - it has a memory span of just 3 minutes. We definitely have limitations too regarding the extent of intellect we are built with. We are afterall just another animal in this universe. Ant is an animal too. Do you think it can figure this with the limited brain it has? We too are ants relative to this universe. (Btw, does the ant even care? Hah!) Explaining metaphysical aspects and super-science thus requires another dimension of thinking, which we lack.

So I would term such books bogus if it is just mathematical proofs coming in. Because mathematics cannot define conciousness, not even quantify it. (Unless of-course you are interested in science-'fiction' which to any scientist would be an oxymoron).

Sunday, February 12, 2006

A day out in San Francisco

(Warning: most pictures in the post cover my head; sorry the incumbent was travelling alone and had to take his own photos most of the time! You could use the map here for reference.)

I landed in America without knowing the conversion cents to dollars or how many cents made a dime. Well it was on a real short notice that I came here you see. Since my stay here is for just a good month or so, I started backpacking and moving around the city the very first weekend I got. Today was the first day and I decided to visit the places according to my priority list. Right on top was the Golden Gate Bridge.

I started from my hotel in Redwood City at about 9:00 AM to the caltrain station to catch the train to SFO - a 45 minute ride. From there I began my journey to the Golden Gate bridge. (Mind you, I was totally unprepared for this). I walked downtown to catch a glimpse os its unique architecture. The climate was akin to Kodai or Ooty. I found this interesting place closeby. Its by the Zeum art center.

Downtown just got me snapping away for pictures. Adding just one shot here, as its quality is nice. There were skateboarders practicing, both serious and fun-minded joggers, yougsters revving their fast cars, crowded trams (very noisy) running down the street, people just out to enjoy the sunshine, and a lot of people with dogs (Americans love pets).

As I walked on, I reached the Bay Bridge. I thought it was Golden Gate bridge at first and hung around there for a long time until I simply asked the hot-dog person and found out to my horror. The seagulls there are huge and not scared of humans. Caught this inquisitive person staring at me :)

From there on I walked on towards the Golden Gate bridge, and in between went through Fisherman's wharf. There are many sights and sounds to capture out there. All I am posting here is a picture of this awesome musician performing. There are other dancers, musicians and street delights.

Also in the route was Alcatraz in the background. I used the biking/skating path to the bridge. There were folks on Segaways, bikes, roller skates and many jogging on. I just walked on taking in the breathless scenery along the way. The smell of eucalyptus wafted over the air. Its amazing that America has laid so much concern for bikers, setting aside bike trails and other conveniences for them. Nice to see that.

Okay so i got onto my last leg of the trek up towards the bridge and it was a nice climb. The trek reminded me of my Ooty days. Anyways, yours truly did manage to take a shot on his own, standing the camera up on a pier and setting the timer. I am pretty pleased with the result :)

Finally (yay!) I've made it to the bridge!! I start getting pictures in a frenzy. Luckily I carried two memory cards and I filled them both!
Now that was what I was waiting for! A glimpse of the famous landmark. As a bonus, I also got some astounding views of the city. There was a large crowd at the bridge on this saturday evening.

Well, I walked my way back as I couldn't get a single bus!! On the way, I passed through the art palace and the exploratorium. The art work and architecture is extraordinary. It felt like a mythical Greek setting. An English touch to it was a calm lake full of soothing-to-look-at ducks.

Well, that was about it. It was a long day. I took the bos 30 back to the Caltrain station and got back home. And my legs are aching and eyes are closing. So I don't have the capacity to spell check this post (not that I do normally) or check for grammatical errors. I'll do all that later. Till then, ciao.

Note: Entire set of photos here.

TIDBIT: cisco got its name from the abbreviation of San Francisco!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Large company vs. Small company - working for each

Well, I have to say that there is a large amount of difference working for a large company compared to working for a small company. I have essentially spent a year and a half with a large company (25000+ employees) and am currenty visiting and working for a smaller company(30+ employees), as our client.

Well, as a newbee to work, one would think your immediate surroundings and colleagues are all that matter to you. But your colleagues themselves are part of the organisation and they act and react as per the environment too. Ultimately, its a world of a difference.

In a nutshell, its like studying in a small village school run by your own uncles or someone like that [working for a small company] compared to
studying in a prestigiously run convent school with lot of rules [the larger company]. Both schools have principals (and also principles), but the way they hit you are different :)

Processes are well implemented in the larger company and due to that all the paths are firmly laid - you just have to follow the advice of your seniors to know how to advance.
With regard to the smaller company, its a silent tug-of-war that happens due to certain hapless situations too.

Well, this immature rambling here is primeval and I intend to make sense out of it later, but this is nevertheless a good placeholder. Am interested to know what others think about this too.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

A sunny lunch

The climate in California is pretty good now compared to the rest of America (atleast its not snowing and chilly)!

This afternoon we had a pretty good lunch outdoors at the Pacific Shores office. Till yesterday evening it was damn cold to go out, but todays lunch made us feel we could sit out all day there enjoying the sun. Its also the time of the year when cherry blossoms bloom in this part of the world (sad I didn't get my camera today, but if I will soon, I'll out those pictures here).

By the way, did I mention my lunch cost $7? It was like this - I entered a self-service area (where almost everything looks relishing) and you pay by the weight of food that you take. I took a little extra and damn, the weight in my stomach reminds me of my today's expense (gulp) :-) This may prompt me to bring my lunch from tomorrow (if I can stand the catching sight of all that good food in the food-court)!

Indian Panorama - feb 7

Just would like to put in a few interesting headlines today:

a. Happy to know that Indian scientists have found answers that eluded Eintein and that Phillipines and India are the biggest spoilers of Coca-Cola's party!

b. In one way good that we're getting better buildings and on the other hand, its a mark of mistrust on our Indian builders!
Foreign architects eye India's huge IT projects

c. And hey, is he true when Emraan Hashmi says: 'Women like bad boys'?

Go figure!

Sorry for the really uninteresting scheme of colours of-late, but I will change it when I get time!

Thanks to for todays digest!