Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Glances at Necropolis

The Great Pyramid of Giza is the oldest and largest of the three pyramids in the Giza Necropolis bordering what is now Cairo, Egypt in Africa, and is the only remaining member of the Seven Wonders of the World. It is believed to have been built as a tomb for Fourth dynasty Egyptian pharaoh Khufu (hellenized as Χεωψ, Cheops) and constructed over a 20 year period concluding around 2560 BC. The tallest structure in the world for over 3,800 years, it is sometimes called Khufu's Pyramid or the Pyramid of Khufu.

This Ancient Egyptian necropolis consists of the Pyramid of Khufu (known as the Great Pyramid and the Pyramid of Cheops), the somewhat smaller Pyramid of Khafre (or Chephren) a few hundred metres to the south-west, and the relatively modest-size Pyramid of Menkaure (or Mykerinus) a few hundred metres further south-west, along with a number of smaller satellite edifices, known as "queens" pyramids, causeways and valley pyramids. The Great Sphinx lies on the east side of the complex, facing east. Current consensus among Egyptologists is that the head of the Great Sphinx is that of Khafre. Associated with these royal monuments are the tombs of high officials and much later burials and monuments (from the New Kingdom onwards), signifying the reverence to those buried in the necropolis.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Do girls ever listen?

I have been thinking about how much fun girls always have been (or maybe my Pheromones were speaking for me) but recently, I’ve been exposed to the more ‘Complicated’ side of them and a continuous habit no matter how hard you try to break of not listening? I am surprised here and can really have a vote here as is it me or girls just don’t listen?

I’ve been stumped that no matter how articulate one may be it is almost impossible to explain a female counterpart the notion of practicality. Somehow their ‘intuitive’ thinking and our sense (as in a guy) doesn’t really go hand in hand. Tell her to do something from a practical point of view; she won’t because it’ll conflict with her line of thought. Write down instructions for her and she won’t follow it. Afterwards, when it doesn’t work she’ll blame you for being so vile that you’ve given her a plan so flawed. No wonder Einstein found it easier to work on the theory or relativity than on the theory of relationships.
You do something wrong, you get fired for that – accepted behavior.
She does something wrong and you accept is as a part of life – difficult to accept but not improbable.
She does something wrong and you get fired for that – again, difficult to accept but not improbable.
Anyone does anything wrong and you get fired for that – wow, try that for size!
And, somehow, to most guys in relationship this has become a part of life. Perhaps, their pheromones levels are way too high to feel anything but generous towards the females.

In my short life with whatever experiences I’ve had, more often I’ve found myself at my wit’s end asking myself the question – What Did I do (now)?
Somehow, I’ve always been the one seeking apology and thinking that somewhere something was wrong only to realize that it was me and my understanding of the word apology wrong. As per dictionary.com, Apology is “a written or spoken expression of one's regret, remorse, or sorrow for having insulted, failed, injured, or wronged another”. Also, if you care enough to look beyond that, there is another definition – “an inferior specimen or substitute”. Well, how about that! Girls do have a better sense of the language and somehow, they don’t need to study it in School or pickup a dictionary for that. Genetically speaking, if the chromosome pairing of the last pair is ‘XY’, the first part of the meaning holds true otherwise, it’s the latter one. So a girl asking for apology is out of the question. And to trace this root of evil perhaps, we need to go back in time when some philanthropic anthropologist said that Women are more superior to men. Today, I think it was just his hormones speaking for him.
It’s always like this even when we make a comment based on the gender (like this blog I’m posting) – we’re being sexist or chauvinist. Had it been a girl writing an article like this – she’s being a feminist!

One thing at the end I did understand, there’s no point complaining! Shut up and you’ll enjoy good sex well, most of the times. Otherwise like me – you’ll be sleeping on the couch.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Happy Programmer's Day

Happy Programmer's Day to all my friends and geeks.

Programmer's day is a 'holiday' on the 256th day of the year celebrated mostly by computer programmers (reason: 256 = 2 to the power of 8 = the number of values representable in a byte of data). Traditions include drinking, behaving silly, playing Demo Ball, coding silly programs, mini computer games, playing with old computers, etc. That, of course, includes the condition that the developer who chooses to celebrate, needs to have done decent coding on all the other days and had tried the best not to behave silly on the other days. For those programmers who are used to the 'celebrations' in their every day lives, this 'holiday' becomes unjustified! Programmer's day usually falls on September 13th; on leap years, it is September 12th.Some people feel that counting should start from 0. However, even if you count from 0 it does not change the fact that there are still only 256 bits in a byte. Therefore, if you start counting at 0 then the 256th day falls on the number 255 which does not change the day that the holiday falls on.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

US Grand Prix - 2007

Was there ever any doubt that we would see a McLaren victory? Absolutely not. If the cars were reliable and did not collide with one another or someone else, these were going to be the two cars that would lead the way. We suspected that Lewis Hamilton was lighter in qualifying. But by how much? And could Fernando Alonso use that advantage to grab a victory. There was plenty to look forward to.As things turned out, the strategies involved were very close to one another. Hamilton did have less fuel than Alonso but it was only a lap. This meant that the battle was probably the most intense we have seen so far between the two McLaren team-mates. They fought for every tenth of a second. Every backmarker offered the chance to snatch victory.The cars were so evenly matched that it was really down to a metre here and a metre there. Astonishing.But what a pleasure as well.

Some may say that cars circulating closely is boring but they are people who do not understand what they are seeing. Hamilton had the advantage at the start but he did not make the most of it. That allowed Alonso to have a look at finding a way into the lead. Lewis moved once to make life more difficult for Fernando and that was that. Alonso decided to have a look around the outside but Lewis had that covered. The lead was his."The first stint was extremely close," he explained afterwards. "I managed to pull a slight gap and maintain that."Who was going to be the first to stop?That was a question that was not answered until lap 21, when Hamilton went into the pits. He did not stay there for long and was soon on his way. By then Alonso was leading. We waited to see how much further he could run but the next time around, Fernando came into the pitlane. It was not enough to make much of a difference.

The Ferraris did not have a very different strategy so we knew that they were beaten and Heikki Kovalainen's Renault, which led the race at this point, was never a serious contender. When the first stops were done it was Hamilton ahead of Alonso once again but this time things were looking a little different."In the middle stint the tyres started to grain," Hamilton explained. "So Fernando was right up my tail. Whatever I gained in the infield I would lose on the straight. He fought very well. He was very professional. But then I was able to pull a gap and maintain it."And the race reached the halfway point, the McLarens found themselves having to thread their way through a battle being fought by a group of backmarkers, headed by Tonio Liuzzi. The Toro Rosso had held off Alexander Wurz's Williams for the whole race, with a car that was short on downforce in an effort to stay ahead by running less wing on the straights. Hamilton lost a little time - maybe half a second - as Liuzzi hurried to get out of the way and into the pits. But that was all that was needed to give Alonso a sniff of a chance. He got a better run than Lewis in the final corner and the two went side-by-side down all the way down to the first corner, inches apart at 200mph."I was a bit nervous about that and saw he was coming," Lewis said. "I knew I had to make sure I made just one move and made it stick. I went to the inside and knew where I had to brake, and so long as I did that he had to stay behind. But he was on me for the next few corners after that."And then he faded again and Lewis was able to impose his will.

Alonso was beaten."The grid positions were the key of the race," he said. "I had a good car all through and it was close this time, especially the start. But I didn't manage to overtake Lewis and from then on when I was following him I lost downforce and it was difficult to get the tyres in the condition to push all through the stint. You damage them more when you are following. On lap 38 it was one or two centimetres between us, probably. It was close but it's difficult to overtake at this circuit. I had only that one chance and it was not possible, so that was the race over."The second stops changed nothing between the two men although for a moment Massa inherited the lead for Ferrari.He pitted soon afterwards and then rejoined third, and had to spend the rest of his race holding off Kimi Raikkonen."We can't be satisfied with third place," Massa said. "I did my best and I am happy to have got on the podium. We need to work out how to improve the car to get ahead of our closest rivals."Kovalainen finished fourth."I think the result is the maximum we can achieve at the moment. We cannot beat McLaren and we cannot beat Ferrari, but I think we can fight with BMW. I'm happy about my race."Heidfeld was less pleased. He had a spin early on and lost ground and then ultimately retired with an hydraulic failure.Behind Kovalainen, the points were collected by Jarno Trulli and Mark Webber and by Sebastien Vettel.
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