Friday, August 27, 2004

Happy Belated Birthday Linux

Yesterday was Linux's birthday. By Linux I mean the core kernel alone. It was on Aug 25, 1991 that Linus put the first message about Linux.

From: torvalds@klaava.Helsinki.FI (Linus Benedict Torvalds)
Newsgroups: comp.os.minix
Subject: What would you like to see most in minix?
Summary: small poll for my new operating system
Message-ID: 1991Aug25.205708.9541@klaava.Helsinki.FI
Date: 25 Aug 91 20:57:08GMT
Organization: University of Helsinki

Hello everybody out there using minix -I'm doing a (free) operating system (just a hobby, won't be big andprofessional like gnu) for 386(486) AT clones. This has been brewing since april, and is starting to get ready. I'd like any feedback onthings people like/dislike in minix, as my OS resembles it somewhat(same physical layout of the file-system (due to practical reasons)among other things).I've currently ported bash(1.08) and gcc(1.40), and things seem to work.This implies that I'll get something practical within a few months, andI'd like to know what features most people would want. Any suggestionsare welcome, but I won't promise I'll implement them :-)

Linus (

PS. Yes - it's free of any minix code, and it has a multi-threaded fs.It is NOT protable (uses 386 task switching etc), and it probably neverwill support anything other than AT-harddisks, as that's all I have :-(.

Linux is now 13 years young ;)
See also : Understatement of the century

Thursday, August 26, 2004


The Don either means a new brand of underwear or a purgative. -- Anonymous.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Work is worship!!

I am here at work. Disillusioned with the industry in just a couple months; seeing nothing of what I was expecting from it when I first joined. :( Dunno what i will do for the rest of my life.

Now I think, how it would have been had I not chosen this industry and was in a different one.

Would I be in the same state of mind? What wouldI be thinking at this point of time, if I had pursued a childhood dream? A dream at an age when computers were unheard of and the most dashing profession around was that of a bus driver. The driver was the "hero", driving a fast and huge vehicle vrooom vrooom, twisting and turning and applying screeching brakes.


More important, if I had suggested my choice of profession to my parents, what would their reaction be? In many western countries, children are out of home in their late teens. they take up jobs and save money for higher education. Here, on the other hand, the structure is quite the opposite. We tend to depend on our parents till atleast our graduation. Sometimes even for higher education.

Our parents would have the shock of their lives if we were to tell that we wanted to work our way for our higher education. Imagine, how would "society" react if a professor's son/daughter were to take up the work of a carpenter or painter. Shock? Surprise?

Let us assume the professor has been exposed to the western way of life. Inspite of it, his/her reaction would be just the same as a person who is not.


We live in a tight social structure and people dont seem to accept change easily. One one side there is all this talk of western culture invading india and that the social structure is eroded etc etc, we dont seem to see some of the positives. One thing to admire is the dignity of labour. No one who comes from "respectable families" in our country would work as a waiter or newspaper or milk delivery person . Atleast none that I know of.

It takes an open mind to accept the idea and allow something that is "against" the usual way of life here. How many of us (the current generation of "smart alecs" and "know it alls" would encourage this?

PS: I asked a few of my friends "If u were a big shot in the society and ur son got the job of a carpenter / waiter for the sake of earning for higher education, what wud ur reaction be?"

I got a few "no problem" (and a few "no way!") responses from friends I asked; that they would encourage their children to earn for their education. But then, times change and so do people.

Friday, August 20, 2004

7 am: I read the newspaper, India's medal hope in weightlifting, Karnam Malleshwari decided to drop out due to a back injury. The first attempt in the snatch event was pathetic; the weights hardly came above knee level.
9 Am : I hit google and see this image :

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Sun tv, a channel that
  • Shows the earth rotating in the reverse direction.
  • Advertises the contents of its 8 PM news during commercial breaks of prime time soap operas.
  • Relegates the silver medal winning performance of Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, India's first in this edition of the olympics, to secondary news headline in favour of one which featured a stamp relese function.

What can I say?

Sunday, August 15, 2004

Medical Help for men?

Authenticity of information NOT guaranteed. May have side effects.
Click on the image to hit the site.

Check the Google search results and the Yahoo search results.

Friday, August 13, 2004

Man we are in demand!

Check this economic times article.
Are we in demand or what?

Hold on to your horses peoples. See this one also.


Mathematics is one of the essential emanations of the human spirit-a thing to be valued in and for itself, like art or poetry.
--Oswald Veblen.

There are few things in this world that are more beautiful than an elegant mathematical proof.

Thursday, August 12, 2004

Athension India

If the showing of Indian athletes in the Commonwealth Games in 2002 (Manchester) is any indication, then I expect the Indian contingent to come back with more than just one medal. It has been 2 years since then, but lets hope for the best.

Wishing the best to the Indian sportspersons and hoping they will put up a respectable show.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

The fifth Horseman returns?

Visiting a book store recently, I happened to see a book by Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre "Is New York Burning". The last page summary reminded me of a book by the same authors published in 1980 - The Fifth Horseman.

In 1980 the two authors imagined a scenario that is so possible today. The story is simple:

Muammar Gadaffi plants a Hydrogen Bomb in the heart of New York and demands that the Israelites withdraw from the areas that they have illegally occupied in the middle east. And gadaffi knows well, there are more jews in New York than in Israel. That is the singular reason for the bomb being there.

What will the American government do now? Israel is a country it has always supported (thanks to its strategic geographical location). The government has to decide between risking the lives of New Yorkers and taking military action against Israel.

The story was definitely way ahead of its time in the 80's and I strongly feel that it is the same story with the names of the central characters changed to suit the 20th century. They hope that in the current scenario, the book will be a bestseller.

There is extreme fear and insecurity in the american mind. They even sent their own troops to protect their athletes in the yet to begin Athens Olympic. If the American mindset were to be cast into a human form, it would be an ideal replacement for the ever paranoid and pantophobic character potrayed by Kamal Haasan in the movie Thenaali.

Monday, August 09, 2004

In the end,it was the Sunday Afternoons he couldnt cope with, and that terrible listlessness which starts to set in at about 2.55 when you know that you have had all the baths that you can usefully have that day, that however hard you stare at any given paragraph in the papers you will never actually read it, or use the revolutionary pruning techniques it describes, and that as you stare at the clock the hands will move relentlessly on to 4'o clock, and you will enter the long dark teatime of the soul.

Douglas Adams(Life, the Universe and Everything)

Friday, August 06, 2004

Today is the day that 59 years ago a mushroom cloud rose into the skies above a town in Japan called Hiroshima. It rained death to a degree that mankind found unimaginable.
Three days later, it was Nagasaki that witnessed the same.

We have been living in fear and awe of the atomic bomb since then.

I can only wonder what would have gone through the minds of Paul Tibbets and Charles Sweeney after they realised the destruction that they had unleashed.
Did they ever repent ( though they were just following orders)?