Games Indians Play by V. Raghunathan

Last week a friend of mine had come from hyderabad. So, took him to forum…and by default I went to landmark also. This is the place where I will never get bored……I can spend hours together in landmark looking at all the books. Finally bought two books and one of them was this one Games Indians Play by V. Raghunathan.

Coming to this book, I had heard about this book already but didn’t knew what it was all about. So, when I found it in landmark, I just saw the contents and it seemed to be really interesting. This book is basically about “why we are the way we are” i.e., why are we Indians the way we are….an interesting read isn’t it??? 🙂 I came across many new concepts of game theory through this book and the way the author correlates them to the way Indians think and behave is quite interesting. Especially the prisoner’s dilemma framework was really good. Also the different variations of this and then trying to understand the characteristics of human rationality, irrationality, egotism, competetion, co-operation among we Indians, etc through this framework was really good. Also the author discusses about the various scenarios that he had used when he was teaching at IIM-A and a few experiments that he used to do in parties, etc.

On the whole its an interesting read and would definitely recommend it. If you don’t have the time to read the book atleast try reading about the concept of prisoner’s dilemma, pseudo dilemma, wolf’s dilemma, etc. They are really really interesting concepts worth looking at. Also original articles on prisoner’s dilemma by hofstadter that were published in scientific american in 1980’s are worth reading.

Of all the quotes that I came across in this book, the one I liked the most is this

India is a functioning anarchy” —by J.K.Galbraith (US ambassador to India, 1962).

What an amazing weekend it was!!!!

Last weekend I had a blast with my btech friends. For three days it was lot of fun. Its been a long long time since I had a good time with my btech friends. Those three days I had such a good time that I don’t feel like working now 🙂 (anyways I never felt like working 😉 ). I am still in that mood only. Thanks to nandini and bhavana who came to bangalore all over from hyderabad.

Initially all of us planned to go to coorg but somehow it got cancelled. So, we decided to go to places in and around bangalore. Let me start from Day 1.

Day 1:

What a day it was!!! Thanx to air deccan and BIAL (Bangalore International Airport Limited) it took my friend a total of 7 hours to reach bangalore from chennai 😯 . For me the day started at 5.30 AM. I had to first pick up my friend from railway station. After reaching the station, I came to know that the train is running late by one hour. And this is just the beginning….so to pass away the time I had my breakfast at comesum in the station..then had some tea…then went around the station for sometime and still there was no sign of the train 🙁 . At last I get a call from my friend that the train has arrived…what a relief!!!! 🙂 . After a long wait at last I dropped my friend at her friend’s place and came back to my room. Had a short nap and got up to go to the new devanahalli airport. Got a call from my friend in chennai that the flight was on time. So, started off to the airport immediately unaware of what was in store for me at the airport 🙁 . Thought of trying the new volvo buses to the airport. Luckily found one as soon as I reached the bus stop. For people who are not aware of these volvos and new airport stuff…..the scenario is that the new international airport at bangalore was opened on the same day and airport people had put these volvos in service to reach the new airport which was around 45 km 😯 from my place. It took me 1 hour 45 minutes to reach the airport. I thought my friend’s flight would land first. But the situation at chennai airport was that the flight got delayed by some 30 mins initially…then another 30 mins and then another 30 mins and then after boarding it was delayed by another 30 mins 😡 …..thats what is air deccan’s speciality. So ultimately the flight that was supposed to reach bangalore by 11.15 AM reached bangalore by 2 PM 😯 ….. thank god it reached 😀 . Just to pass away the time I had a sandwich, a cool drink and read the whole Economic Times paper 🙂 . So, today whatever the food I had was just to pass away the time 🙁 . Now again from the airport to reach the city its another herculean task. Took a volvo and this time it took almost 2 hours to reach our place. So, ultimately by 4.30 PM we were at our friend’s place. So, for my friend it was a total of 7 hours journey to reach the destination.

In the evening we planned to go to hogganekkal falls the next day. So, went out to book a cab and then thought of going to dinner from there. But thanks to these travel offices, it took us almost 2 hrs to get a cab……after a lot of arguments atlast we had to pay what they wanted us to pay 🙁 . And then after everything was decided, they could not get the vehicle we wanted and he kept us waiting in his office 😡 . Looks like today it was the day of waiting waiting and waiting for me 🙁 . Anyways finally we booked the cab and then went for dinner. Another friend was also supposed to join but thanks to the travel people who made us to wait so long that it was too late for her to join us. Anyways three of us had a nice dinner at bombay post on airport road.

Day 2:

I had to get up by 5 AM 🙁 as we asked the car driver to come by 6 AM. This guy came in time. Picked up the other friends from their places and we started off to hogganekkal falls. It was around 160 – 180 km from our place. Reached the place by afternoon. To see the actual falls we have to take a coracle. We were total of 5 and for Rs. 600 we could get one. This guy took us near the falls…we had proper shower…all of us were completely wet. Initially none of us thought that we would be wet..but ultimaltely none of us were dry 🙂 . Initially we thought that this being summer there won’t be lot of water. But it was really good. Maybe in monsoons the level of water would be still more and the flow of the falls would also be more. But still the place was too good. The water going through the rocks, the coracles, the hills at a distance all made the place worth visiting.

Then we went around in the coracle for some more time and then were back. There was one crocodile rehabilitation centre also here. One can find lot of crocodiles here. After all this we were all set to go back to bangalore. The only problem in the journey was that the last few kilometers to this place, the road was bumpy and all of us had this vomiting sensation. Anyways by 6.30 PM we were all back home.

The plan for the next day was supposed to be decided over dinner. Had our dinner in mainland china on 100 ft. road. Here we decided that next day we would go to shivasamudram and this proved to be a very good decision.

Day 3:

Again I had to get up by 5 AM 🙁 . After pickingup other friends from their places, we started our journey. We took the mysore road and then the deviation at maddur. The road till maddur was too good…..ofcourse it was the bangalore – mysore road 🙂 . Had our breakfast on the way. Now from maddur though the road wasn’t that good, but the place was awesome….on either sides of the road we could see the paddy fields, sugarcane fields, the coconut trees all over, banana trees and many more. It was an awesome view. Just this bit of the journey made us feel like that it was a good decision to go to shivasamudram. After reaching the place we first went to see if we were allowed to see the dam. But visitors were not allowed 🙁 . By the way this dam was supposed to be the first one in South Asia..built somewhere in 1902. Then we went to the gagan chukki falls. The sight of the falls was too good. It was really really worth coming to this place. From there we went to bara chukki falls. Its around 14 km from here. On the way we stopped at the dam reservoir. Had some fun here by climbing trees, etc. We spent almost 45 mins to get on to a tree and get down 🙂 . Ofcourse if you look at the tree you would know why 😀 . Then reached the bara chukki falls. And here we can go to the bottom of the falls by walk. There were even the coracle’s to go in the waters but we were not interested in it. Thought of exploring the place ourselves 🙂 . After crossing the small stream and getting on to the rocks we went to the point where the falls reach the ground. It was worth the effort. Spent some time here and started to walk back to the top. Had real fun at this place when compared to hogganekkal falls. And as always all good things come to an end, we started off back to bangalore. On our way back I had to bear the three females singing at the top of their voices 🙂 ……..had no clue as to what happened to them 😀 . After having some food at forum went to yeshwantpur station to drop my friends and then came back home.

So, atlast it was the end of all fun and back to the same routine again 🙁

Will be uploading the photos soon…………… keep checking.

Lamborghini in bangalore

Believe me!!!!!! I just saw a lamborghini in bangalore on airport road and it wasn’t long back when I saw a ferrari on airport road (near the pizza hut junction…near wind tunnel road) and today it was a lamborghini………was shocked to see one in india and that too in bangalore…. 😯 . Came home and just googled for “lamborghini in bangalore” and here I found this youtube video.

It was an yellow lamborghini……. I was waiting at the leela palace junction ( near manipal hospital) on airport road….and just then I see this car taking a U turn in front of me….. I was so happy to see it….. and then I saw the power of the car……..just in a split second this guy was racing like hell as the road was not too busy….man the sound was awesome…..and then we got green signal and started following him……poor fellow he had to slow down 🙂 thanx to bangalore traffic 😀

And then comes another surprise…..I was expecting some young chap in his twenties driving it and what I saw was some old man maybe in his 50’s 😯 with white beard and wearing a black coloured cap. Followed him till the domlur flyover and then that guy went straight on airport road and I had to take the flyover to 100 ft. road 🙁

Anyways I am really happy to get a glimpse of it….. when I was in US I just saw these lamborghinis’s in a showroom in San Francisco (me standing before the car and here is another one)and was content with that….but today it was a gr8888 feeling to see it on bangalore roads…..this was the first time I felt bad for not having a camera in my cell phone 🙁 and felt good about the bangalore traffic (or else by the time I could reach him he must have reached some 200 miles per hour 🙂 ).

Pangea Day Bangalore

Had been to the venue in bangalore where the pangea day movies were played. It was actually in a company called ThoughtWorks……good to see that companies are allowing outsiders to host such events….and that too on the night of elections day in bangalore. Reached the venue by 8 PM…..the movies were supposed to start from 11.30 PM IST, but here the organizers planned for more….so we had to reach by 8. One bad thing was that we were not allowed to take our laptops or cameras 🙁 . So, no live blogging.

Coming to the events over there….initially the TED talk by Jehane Noujam was shown followed by some live performances by some of the attendees. Then it was the time for the live telecast. I was there along with my friend karthik till the end of the programme. It was 3.30 am in the morning. All the people who came were there till the end. Overall the concept was good. Getting so many people together to watch films to understand one another, to bring about some change in people, to look at people’s fears…sorrow….etc. The live telecast could have been watched sitting at home also…. but the point is to watch the movies along with everyone and that’s what this pangeaday is all about.

And lastly about the movies……most of them were interesting except a few . The ones I liked the most are Dancing Queen, Elevator Music, I remember Lebanon, Inja (Dog), J’Attendrai Le Suivant (I’ll Wait for the Next One), Pale Blue Dot, Papiroflexia, Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars, Silli (The Slap), The Americana Project : Cuba, The Ball, WalleyBall. The whole list of the movies can be found here.

I sincerely wish that more of such events should be held. Maybe they might not change the world immediately but the point is that atleast people would start thinking and that’s what is required. After all the whole event was the result of a single person’s wish and it brought so many people together at the same time. Imagine what can be done if everyone of us would start thinking.

Installed Gallery

Till now I was using picasa to create the web albums and then was uploading the album on my server. But atlast I decided to go for gallery as I will be getting more features with it. I will be getting a lot of features like allowing users to add comments, add descriptions to the photos, providing slideshows, creating new user accounts (users can upload their photos on my server)and many more. So, installed gallery on my web server yesterday. The first album uploaded through gallery is my shar trip album.

You can check out the gallery here. The link to the gallery can also be found in the sidebar on the right side (My Gallery) and also in the Photo Album page on the top. Will be writing my shar experiences soon.

Pangea Day, a global day of film

Heard about this pangea day a lot but never actually looked into the details. The concept looked interesting to me. Check out the details of pangeaday in bangalore here. The inspiration behind this pangea day is this TED talk by Jehane Noujaim…..the winner of 2006 TED prize. Planning to be there this saturday.

iPhone in India – good and bad news

The good news is that vodafone had tied up with apple to sell iphones in 10 countries including india… source economic times article …..vodafone website and this article as well. Ofcourse thanks to jayant who told me yesterday itself that apple is going to sell iphones in india through vodafone.

But the bad news is that the price of the 8GB piece is going to be 28k 😯 in india….. forget about the 16GB one 🙁

Now looking at this all my iphone dreams are now shattered 🙁 . So, atlast it again comes down to buying one from the US and then unlocking it here 😀 . This price problem has always been an issue here and I guess it will continue to be there always 🙁 . Companies keep talking about the piracy, etc in india but when the prices are so high then indirectly they themselves are encouraging it 😉 . Now if apple is going to sell the phones in india for double the price when compared to US then obviously people would prefer looking for alternative ways 🙂 😉 …. afterall india is a price sensitive market and one needs to keep the price factor also in mind even when it comes to selling some of the world’s best products.

And one more reason why I am not happy is because of treating india to be a dumping yard……..yes I mean dumping yard 😡 . Because apple is launching the 2G phones in india at a point when its launching the 3G phones in US in june. So, apple is just trying to dispose off those outdated 2G phones in other countries. I agree that India still doesn’t have 3G coverage and maybe bharti & MTNL are trying to get it soon. But still somewhere in the mind it remains that we are going to have some outdated instruments when compared to the rest of the world. Although the article in ET says that during later part of the year we can expect the 3G phones as well… but I guess that would be only after all those older 2G ones are sold out.

But I think whatever be the model and the price definitely the iPhone will have many takers in india. And coming to owning one….. I wish someone would gift me one 🙂 ….and that said I think I am being too greedy 😆