Wednesday, February 23, 2005


People tend to assume that it is very good to have excellent memory. I beg to differ. You need to have the power to forget things. You need to carry some good memories forward and leave unpleasant memories behind. In such scenarios, great memory power will only hinder us.

Here is an instance of a guy with photogenic memory.

Yesterday, my friend stumbled across an old classmate of hers. They had studied together only till First Std. But when they bumped into each other, he not only recollected her by name but also her sister's name as well. Its amazing but true. Sometimes people get etched in the memories and even after years, you can recollect them very well.

Dont ask about me. Though I can recognize most of my classmates, I remember the names of only a few.

Infact today is the 500th day since I joined my present job. But it feels as if I walked into this company only a few months back.

- Dheepak Ra

Glass of Water

That is all, it took to ruin the seal in my passport. At that time, I thought well here goes some few thousand rupees down the drain. Little did I anticipate the troubles to follow.

I had filed for duplicate passport on Dec 13, 2004 at Bangalore Regional Passport Office(RPO). On Dec 17 they claim to have dispatched it to S.P - Bangalore. After several visits in vain to my local police station, I went to SP office in Feb 2005. They said that as per their records, they never received it. When it is dispatched via speed post, I cant fathom as to how they can lose it. Anyway mistakes do happen, so I filled up another Personal Verification Form at the enquiry counter at RPO. After a week, the second copy too didnt reach the SP office. When I went to enquiry counter on Feb 22, the guy said that usually it is dispatched to SP office on the same day. When I asked him to check and confirm the exact date in which he sent the duplicate form to police, he defended himself "We process several thousands of applications per day and it takes time". He asked me to file a duplicate for the third time. At this stage, I lost my temper.[ U guys might vouch for me, that I hardly lose my temper ]. If these guys cant dispatch a single form via speed post to SP office within two months, what are for are they over there? What amazes me is that he is asking me to keep filing duplicate forms instead of following up the original.

Finally I managed to get hold of the dispatch clerk. In front of the police, he demanded Rs.200 if the form is ever to leave the RPO. When I turned to the SP police personel, he said "What you are paying is separate from what you are supposed to pay me". That literally shook me. I know there are corrupt persons but these corrupt policemen encourage these petty criminals like dispatch clerk to openly demand for money. Finally I paid the dispatch clerk Rs.200 and left.

To my surprise the very same day in the evening, the clerk called to inform that my forms will reach SP office tomorrow. Now if the forms were present why did the enquiry personel ask me to file a duplicate? The next day (23-Feb) I got a call from the SP police personel in the afternoon. He said that the form has arrived and asked me to collect it by 5:30pm. Unfortunately I had a client presentation due to which I couldnt make it. Lo and behold, he calls up at 6:30pm and he is advising me to collect it on the same day. [He recieves the bribe only when he gives the form to me].

Did I add, the passport website updates the status only once in a while. For my application, it says "File under processing". Heaven knows as to what that means. It has remained in that state since the day I submitted my form. When I enquired at RPO, they said that the status is "Expedite Police Verification". So much for their e-system. BTW you should have seen the homepage of Bangalore Passport site. I think a tenth std school kid, would design a better site than these "computer proffessionals". Wonder what is their qualification and how much they are being paid!!!!

I have already taken two half days off to follow up at SP and RPO. I have got some understanding boses who are giving me permission to take half day off. But I shouldnt push things beyond a limit.

I am going to SP office on 24 Feb Morning session and then to local police station for verification. Lets see, what is the current bribe rates :-(

All these troubles originated from a glass of water!!!!!!!

I collected the verification form from SP office after paying him 100 bucks. If only looks could kill, I didnt stare at him though. Eventhough he isnt supposed to dispatch it directly, he gladly handed it over to me. I took it to the local police station for verification. First day I was sent back to bring two of my colleagues for verification. Next day when I did bring the colleagues, he took the witness verbatium and their signatures. He demanded that I pay him Rs.300 and in advance. (Nope he wont take it while handing over the signed verification forms either) Eventhough I did pay the amount, it took 9 days to get it signed by SI who is either in my company campus for visitor security or on election duty. Finally I took the signed forms to the SP office who again after 100 bucks (filed under travel cost to RPO)closed it. After few more weeks, I did recieve the passport on March 28, 2005.

105 days to get a duplicate passport :-(

Eventhough initially I resisted all shortcuts and bribes, I had to give in. I had taken so many half day permission from office (must have been atleast 10) without considering the saturdays I had spent travelling pillar to post. If I had a less understanding manager - Loss of Pay alone would have boiled down to Rs. 5000 not to mention the travelling cost and the effort involved. Rs.5000 was after I decided to cut down on my losses and call it quits - I simply started paying the bribes. When the police itself openly accepts bribe whom do I complain to? Some commission who doesnt have any power to even suspend anyone (they can only recommend suspension which is most often not heeded to by the seniors)

If only this was during my college days - I would have taken it to the finish. But not as an employee where time is money.....

Do you disagree with me?

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Plight of Iranian Bloggers

Today is "Free Mojtaba and Arash Day"

I felt sorry for this guy. If you have some time to spare, read this interview.

- Dheepak Ra

Monday, February 21, 2005

Phissing Attacks

For a long time, this blog was kept as private and revealed only to a selected few. Finally this weekend, I decided to let my brother view it. I gave him the link to the blog In a few minutes, he got back "U never told us that you got converted?". And a few more words, which are censored here.

It took me some time to realize that there was a typo. Instead of blogspot, I had typed blogpsot. And there is some website called "" which opens up. They claim "SEARCH ENGINE/DIRECTORY—World’s highest hitting English sites in major categories". I am unable to interpret their claims. But one thing is for sure, they are utilizing the popularity of this blog, to increase the no of hits on their site.

Anybody knows a good lawyer who is ready to fight for a noble cause like this, for free?

Atleast send an email to those guys, advising them that it is not morally right to do so.

- Dheepak Ra

Sunday, February 20, 2005

25 Million Downloads

I am trying to curb my tendency to blog about Firefox too much. But I couldnt resist on this occasion. Firefox 1.0 has been downloaded 25 million times in just 99 days. We should keep in mind that this figure excludes the unofficial mirrors, caching at local proxies and more importantly a single download is used to install in several PCs.

Way to go FireFox. Check out Spread FireFox

- Dheepak Ra

Update: Few hours after I posted this blog, Spread FireFox website has gone down. This is one of the very few instances when I have seen the site down. May be, too many of my visitors are following the link and overburdening their servers ;-)

Book and Cine Reviews

I had watched Fida today with decent expectations. To say that I was disappointed is an understatement. Here is the same guy who was the hero of my favourite Hindi movie - "Ishq Vishq". A movie in which the character - "Payal" enacted by Amrita Rao is still fresh in my memory. I think we should sue the director of this movie for wasting 3 hours of my precious time. This was the first weekend I was free in nearly 2 months and I had to waste 120 mins.

On the contrary, I read a novel titled "Amazonia". It was the work of an unknown (atleast to me) author - James Rollins. Surprisingly I finished the 623 page book, in a single sitting of 10 hours. I am even tempted to take another novel by the same author tonight.


My neighbour is planning to drill a borewell in her plot.

It reminded me of my college project. Myself, Muralidharan (right now in Shoba Developers) and Shivaraman (in ahmendabad) did the project "Ground Water Potential assessment using GIS and Remotesensing" under the guidance of Dr. George Bakose. In lay mans terms, that is figuring out the ground water level using Insate satellite images and GIS software. It tooks us several months to complete it but most of them accepted that it was worth the wait.

But guess what my neighbour did? They got hold of some guy for predicting the optimal spot to drill the bore. He carried the Y - stick btn the two faces of his palms. As he moved around, the Y stick "rotated" at some particular spot. And they fixed that spot for drilling the bore. All they took was 15 mins and Rs.100. In hindsight may be I should have hired these guys to help me out with my project.

- Dheepak Ra

Quick Update

I know that this blog wasnt updated for more than 10 days. But I didnt have a choice. I was bogged down with work. To top it all, I wasnt in Banglore. I had to goto Mysore to conduct workshop on Grid Computing. And when I was in Banglore, I had to work on ...... (Sorry censored. I have signed NDA with my employers. So I cant reveal that).

And I am trying to compensate for it today with the no of blogs.

Wanna date?

Top 5 Mistakes by Guys:

1) Ping her frequently
Dont call/email/sms too much. Give them some time. Let them comeback. After all there is truth in the oft repeated quote - "If you love somebody, set them free. If they dont comeback, it wasnt yours in the first place. But if they do comeback, they will be with you forever".

2) Pamper her with care
Yeah I know the suggestions doesnt seem to be intuitive. Surprisingly they tend to choke under too much love and care. Even if you truly care for her, dont express it too much. Now and then reassure her.

3) Take her out often.
Never ever gift ur fiance unless its her birthday or valentine's day. Reserve it for special occasions.

4) Dont smoke/drink/freak out.
You are considered as cool only if you smoke and drink a bit. (Hey I m not advising you to do so. Bcoz neither do I. But that is a frank comment)

5) Xcuse yourself when she is down
I am truly surprised to see so many guys who walk away from her at the time of need. There is something called priorities. You dont have to be with her to share the happy moments. But when she is down, you should be the first person to listen and comfort her.

Top 5 Mistakes by Girls:

1) Take him for granted
Guys usually have more patience than opposite sex but still dont push them beyond a limit.

2) Lean on him too much
Neither should you swing to the opposite end of the spectrum.

3) Smoke/Drink/Party around.
Your guy might think it is cool, to take you out on date. But dont expect him to settle down with you.

4) Change urself for ur fiancee.
You should be flexible and accomodating. But you need to be yourself. You shouldnt live a life for somebody else. Instead you should share and live your life with somebody else.

5) Not in touch with future in-laws.
When you marry somebody, you are not only marrying the guy but also the entire family. So take your time to figure out as to whether you are mutually compatible with their family members.

Top 5 Mistakes by Me:
1) Posting this blog
2) Posting this blog
3) Posting this blog
4) Posting this blog
5) Posting this blog

Yeah I know this is controversial, but feel free to air your views.

Disclaimer: All opinions are mine. They do not reflect the views of my gurus. Both of my gurus are out of station. Onsite Guru is on leave and the offshore Guru (v call him as Infyguruji) is meditating in Pune after celebrating his birthday on 19 Feb.

- Dheepak Ra


This is a follow up to my previous post on Madras. Those nostalgic pictures made my friends to forward these pictures to me. For those in Banglore (& i m sure that there are quite a lot of u), this should be a treat.

BTW if you have any interesting snaps, pass it around.

Starting with the place where I live - the good old Hosur Road. Its interesting to note that the cattles still cause traffic jam down there :-)


Do u need any intro on these - our good old MGRoad snaps?



And this is the famous structure at the MG Road and Residency Junction.


CoxTown - Heard about this in passing:

St. Joseph College

St. Patrick Church


Race Course and Race Stand:



Govt Musueum:

Wednesday, February 09, 2005


Jan 28, 2005
Our entire department in office decided to take the day off. We went to a nearby club. Our group of slightly more than 100 persons had a nice time. Apart from the usual speech which is expected, there was a wonderful crossword section. We were split up into several groups. Mine was the smallest group, due to which we named it as "Fabulous Five". Despite the size we came third in the crossword. Anyway there was a boring domino round and indoor games like TT, Carrom etc. But the best portion was the cricket game. We had enthusiastic participation both from the youngsters as well as the seniors. Its nice to see a fresher bowl to his boss. What happened after that, I will leave it to your imagination ;-) In the challenger finals, we won the game with no loss. Obviously what else do you expect when I open the innings while chasing. Let me admit I was not out on 1 run. But importantly I stone-walled one end and made sure no wicket fell down. Did I tell you? I am a wicket-keeper who opens the batting.

I never thought of blogging this but I came across this snap which I couldnt resist. The two guys in blue dress as well as the lady in white/yellow were all part of the "Fabulous Five" team. I loved this picture because they caught our unique facial expressions without our knowledge. Just notice the expressions - smile, sadness, surprise, seriousness........

- Dheepak Ra

It can't be a Parrot

I just submitted an outline draft of RFP to my manager and I am waiting for the comments. In between those few minutes, I thought let me catch up on email. I came across this beautiful site Pets. It was so good that I decided to blog it then and there before I forget about it. Hmm, I can see my manager getting up from his cubicle. So I have to cut this short...........

- Dheepak Ra

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Ballad of the Heart

I am in the middle of one of those weeks, when you are so busy that you cant even remember what work is pending. I am surviving only because of those periodic reminders churned out by Microsoft Outlook, about in which meeting or seminar I am supposed to be in.

It is very rare that I dont reply to my emails immediately. But it happened today. I was checking my emails at intervals of 2 hours!!!!

Let me welcome back Priya (after her operation) and Rebecca, my college lecturer (on sick leave for the last couple of weeks) back to work. Its nice to see you both hale and hearty. I know, I know. I havent seen you. Still I have heard that you people are fine.

Anyway its 1am in the night and I have decided to take a break. Several months back, I wrote something and saved it in my mobile. I forgot all about it, until today. So I decided to dump it here, so that I can clear my sms inbox.

( Cant see it? Sorry, the color of the font is white :-) )

Ballad of the heart
Orchestrated to the dot
Evolving and innovating
As it flickers through
Captivating me but dancing with thee
In rythmic splendor
With all its grandeur
Synchronized to perfection
While navigating the uncharted borders
It crosses the limits
Testing the resolve
Deciphering the parity
Losing the rythm
Losing the sync
But with patience to dwarf
The receptacle of life
With suppleness to enthral
Waiting for the spark
That lit the flame
My hope - thee didnt bid adieu
And so I bow to you

- Baejaar

Gong Xi Fa Cai!

Wondering what the title means?

It is a chinese greeting for the new year.

Today marks the beginning of the Chinese New Year. No I am not making it up. My colleague is in Shanghai and he is the one who gives me an insight into their culture.

New year is usually celebrated grandly and it lasts for a full week. The highlight is a grand feast for dinner on New year eve.

Did you know that this is the year of the Chicken? All kids born on this year, correspond to chicken. So my dear friends who are expecting this year, give it a serious thought ;-)

- Dheepak Ra

Monday, February 07, 2005

Close call

It was a typical, misty Bangalore winter night. As usual I was returning home late on Feb 5th, when I noticed a lorry idling its engine for nearly five minutes. In all those five minutes - the time it took me to cover that stretch of the road, it hardly covered 2 metres. I crossed the vehicle on the way, wondering as to what it was upto in a service lane. I had hardly walked 10m ahead when I heard a loud crash. The lorry had taken with it, the overhanging roof of nearby shop. Worst thing was that it still hadnt stopped. The engine was still purring with life and 1m in front was a live electricity pole. Well I knew that if that driver, persisted with those antics both he and I am in mortal danger of being electrocuted. And my nightmare (yeah I know - my nightmare is your lovely dream) nearly came true. After 15sec, the vehicle did jerk and hit the pole. Even though the concrete pole bent (by 20 degrees), luckily it with stood the impact. Atlast the driver came back to his senses and stopped the vehicle. Having got down from the vehicle, he approached me. I didnt want to vent my anger (though justifiable) on that guy. To avoid that I immediately pushed off to my home.

Till date the lorry is still there, brushing against the electricity pole. I have no clue what so ever as to why that guy behaved like that. But the bad news is that, the pole is so heavily damaged, it can come down anytime. And as usual our govt bodies take their own sweet time, to replace it.

- Dheepak Ra

FireFox 1.0

I was so satisifed with FireFox 0.93 that I didnt switch over to Firefox 1.0. Er..Well.. let me admit it, I was afraid that I might lose the book marks and plugins which I had meticulously collected over the last few months.

Still curiosity gave way and I tried it after 22 million people had taken the plunge. Let me admit, it was awesome. (Well what else did you expect from me) Not only did it import everything perfectly, it also had quite a few features. Now let me leave it to you to explore or else check out Spread FireFox

Here are some of the plugin which I am using. One is the GMail Notifier which pings and notifies about new emails in your gmail account and the second is Foxy Tunes. Its truly awesome extension which allows you to control your favourite media player from/within FireFox itself. Now I can continue to browse my favourite sites and blogs (including urs) while simultaneously fiddling with the playlist.

Here is a screen shot for your benefit. Just notice the buttons for mplayer in the status bar of the browser as well as the gmail notifier to the extreme right.

Let me see, as to what excuse my colleagues can figure out, for avoiding this. Mind you they are creative, in these respects :-)

- Dheepak Ra

Blog - User Stats

Has anybody checked up the user stats in the profile section of blogger. It is way out-dated for me. Only consolation is the fact that I am not the only one who is victimized. Check yours today. I guess yours too might be outdated.

- Dheepak Ra


Wondering what Paladin means? Dont worry you are not alone. You are added to the long list of persons wondering as to what that means.

All this started bcoz I came across a link in my friends blog. I am posting the full description, it churned out about me. Trust me, this one seems to fit me to the T. Another point to note: If you check out the "Warning" section, they suggest me to befriend a warrior. Guess what, my friend in whose blog I first came across this site, is a "Warrior".

I suggest you too, to check out your profile and let me know abt the same. BTW if you believe that the generated profile deviates from the guy - you know, I would be glad to hear from you.

My Inner Hero - Paladin!

I'm a Paladin!

I strive to help others, and to bring truth and harmony to the world however I can. Whether times are good or bad, you can always count on me. I'm a shoulder to cry on, a champion for the helpless, and an all around nice person.

How about you? Click here to find your own inner hero.
Though I havent been spammed me, let me warn you in advance. This site requires you to create an account (name and email id collected).


Your Profile:

You're compassionate, forward-thinking, and devoted to doing the right thing. If you're still in school, your teachers probably adore you, even if your grades aren't very strong. If you work, you're more concerned with doing your job well than climbing the corporate ladder. When it comes to leisure, you'd rather pursue the arts, spend time in nature, or enjoy quiet time with a close friend than spend all night at a raucous party. You seek out peace, beauty, and harmony wherever you can find it.

Above all, you love helping others and bringing a little light to the world wherever you can. You have strong artistic talent, even if you haven't discovered it yet. You aren't a social butterfly, but the friendships you have tend to be long-lasting and devoted. You feel a deep sense of contentment when you have the opportunity to show someone how much you care.

Your Mission:

You were put on this earth to help others. They will trust you, because they are attracted to your sincerity, your kindness, and your willingness to do what's right. You are the one who has to stand up for the little guy, because everyone else is too busy looking after number one.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to Fix Something. Something small, or something big. Put a new chain on your brother's bike. Reconcile a family feud. Take a stray cat to the vet to be spayed. Donate blood. Fix a friend's car for free. Fix SOMETHING.

The Famous Adventurer of Silmaria trusts you to complete your mission. Don't feel guilty about procrastination - start now!

A Warning:

Try to remember: sometimes you need to fight for what you believe in. When someone steps on your rights, or the rights of others, you have to forget being "the nice guy/girl" and set things the way they should be. If necessary, befriend a Warrior and enlist him or her in your cause. Then just turn your Warrior loose and watch the fireworks.

Sometimes you're just going to have to face reality. Because you yourself are trustworthy, you tend to be too trusting. But not everyone is as kind and honest as you are. You may need a Rogue on your side to let you know when you're being hoodwinked, swindled, or made a fool of.


Time does fly

Did somebody mention about Pongal Resolutions? Yeah they did. But resolutions are always meant to be broken.

Time does fly, doesnt it? It seems it was only couple of days ago that I posted here. I realized that I was wrong only when I noticed that the no of firefox downloads (that was the topic of my previous post) has galloped from 20 million to 23 million.

I have got a meeting in another 5 mins. So I decided to make a quick post before that.

I am not going to apologize for not blogging for quite sometime. My calendar was really hectic. In ten days, I had three seminars to attend, two courses (in classroom) to be completed, I had to conduct a course, prepare a demonstration for my VP and hotshots of LifeScience dept. No wonder I was busy.

Meanwhile I took a weekend off. Its not a typo. I meant a weekend off. I watched some films like "one two ka four" and "Veer Zara". The first one wasnt pretty bad and the latter was pathetic. It was so bad that I couldn't stand even half the film. Compared to these, swades was much better. All these were after I watched some good films (via cd ofcourse) like hum tum, kal ho na, main hoon na etc.

Just now came to know about the blog of my school mate. Its a nice one with loads of links and debates. Searching for the same? Sorry I am too selfish to share the link. I suggest you to search via google. Its not too tough to figure out. After all I dont categorize somebody easily as a friend........

There are not many posts in that blog but everyone of them is worth a read and lenghty too. I wonder how people manage it. In my rantlings and (g)rumblings, I can never post like that.

Meanwhile today one of my close friend "Sandhya Naga Hota" (U can call her as SH the way I do) is completing 100 days of married life and tomorrow is another friend - Taruna Arora's birthday too. The former is in Hyderabad and latter is in Panchkula - Haryana. Congratulations and best wishes to both of them.

- Dheepak Ra