I am the alpha and the omega
February 28, 2005
Dror's First Law
While the difficulties and dangers of problems tend to increase at a geometric rate, the knowledge and manpower qualified to deal with these problems tend to increase linearly.

For a long time, I had desired to have a USB flash based drive. I was only deterred by the fact that it was very costly in India, and that the capacities available were not much to satiate my needs. Only after coming here did I realize how much it was a part and parcel of any techie's life.

So I started searching. For a 512MB drive, for less than 40$. 512MB, was what I assumed to be a nominal requirement. And I searched, searched and searched, for a month. Before I hit upon a Sony Microvault Elite 512 MB. More information on the Microvault Elite series of drives can be found at the Sony website

I hit what I consider to be a jackpot. Sony products are usually pricey, much like an Ipod. Its like a status symbol to have one. And now, to get one for that price, well, I did not wait any longer. I had got it after a lengthy search here at Staples. The low price was because of a rebate that they had.

And here it is.

My new Sony Microvault Elite. 512 MB capacity.

(A wallpaper shot of the place where I took the photo can be got here. That is the East Mall at UT Austin.)

Its a pretty amazing drive, with that nice metallic black touch, transluscent orange inside and very small too; Really professional. At present I am using only 40MB of it, but will use more as time goes by.

I really like it. It was a worthy investment. And as they say, Its a SONY

Posted by satosphere at 5:31 PM

February 22, 2005
Law of Driving Dynamics
The speed of an oncoming vehicle is directly proportional to the length of the passing zone.

Unfortunately, the permittivity of time does not allow the permeable me to permeate an interesting blog. All I wished was that the permeability of free space and free time to me would be infinite.

If it hasn't made any sense yet, don't worry. We, including me, are all in the same boat.

In simpler English, all the above means is that, I have been quite busy for the past week, and will be for a while. I shall come up with a new post, hopefully, on Saturday.
Its going to be all about my new flash drive - Sony Microvault, with a capacity of 512 MB.

Till then, its always the Satosphere.

Posted by satosphere at 2:13 PM

February 16, 2005
First Law of Driving
There is no traffic until you start to back out of your driveway.

No glitch in The Hitch

Hitch. A movie of the love doctor. (Image copyright by Columbia Pictures).

Hitch - the movie of a man with class, panache and a love for helping people find their true love. And trying to woo the fine lady of his dreams.
All amidst the georgeous skyline of Manhattan, with some amazing nightime flyby sequences of upper Manhattan.

Its about Will Smith in a different role, a role unlike other, into which he fits in so beautifully. Its about Will Smith playing the part of a cupid, trying to help people find their true love. He is, as the poster says, the cure for the common man.

And the story is about Will Smith's character, Hitch trying to woo a fine lady working as a gossip columnist for a newspaper, and determined to get the best scoop of the love doctor.

A nice romantic comedy. Barring a few awkward scenes, it is a very light movie, and one which definitely makes a very pleasant evening out of a horrid day. Do see it - you won't regret it.

For some people who mite be thinking that I am seeing too many movies, there is one more movie that I haven't written about - Assault on Precinct 13. A very nice action flick which reminded me of Max Payne 2. You will know when you see it.

Posted by satosphere at 9:10 AM

February 13, 2005
Dow's Law
In a hierarchical organization, the higher the level, the greater the confusion.

Marathon Run

Why would I, accustomed to only sleeping 5 hours during weeknites, take great pains to get up on a Sunday morning at the unearthly hour of 8:30 am.

Simply because it was the Freescale marathon. Simply because the 14th mile of the run passes through my neighbourhood four blocks away. Simply because I wanted to see what it was all about.

A good bunch of people running along the Duval, as the road is called.
Also seen is a guy pushing a pram along.

And see it, I did. And cheer, I did. For an hour atleast, while hundreds of people from all age groups, (well, even toddlers, see picture) ran the 42 mile run.
All for an hour of enjoyment.
And a good dose of pictures.

Posted by satosphere at 10:39 AM

February 11, 2005
Douglas's Law of Practical Aeronautical design
When the weight of the paperwork equals the weight of the plane, the plane will fly.

Movie review time


Aviator - The Movie
Image copyright by www.empiremovies.com

This was the movie that I had seen two weeks ago, and then probably regretted spending three hours of my busy schedule in the midst of many homework and project submissions for it.
True, it has recieved an eleven Oscar nominations and three Golden globe awards. But, unless you see it before AND without getting biased by reviews, you will not know how difficult it is to see it.
It does have its own spots of brilliance and flashes of briteness that smother over the other gory and partly eccentric parts of the film. In two simple words, it was excruciatingly long. There are certain scenes which I feel could be would have been better had it been shorter.
Clearly, they didnt tell them that if a movie is going to be three hours long, it has to have comedy/adventure/nice graphical effects and so on. I guess it was because if you start describing the personal life of a person, it is not possible to make a human life more interesting than it possibly is.

The cast of the movie is quite interesting though.

  • The first one is obvious, though. It is Leonardo Dicaprio. Ever since he became famous for The Titanic. His boyish face doesnt portray the character that is Howard Hughes.
  • The next interesting person is Alan Alda. Who can ever forget the uncanny wisecracks in the series M.A.S.H. He plays the role of the corrupt Senator quite strikingly.
  • Another person who mite not come to your mind is Brent Spiner - the Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation. He plays the character of Robert Gross, who is just a minor character.
  • The villain of the film - Alec Baldwin plays the role as the Juan Trippe, the head of Pan American Airlines. The first I saw of him was as an overly optimistic person in the F.R.I.E.N.D.S episode Episode 818 - The One in Massapequa (which, surprsingly, is where Alec Baldwin was born).
  • Jude Law - not something that I know much about.
  • Kate Blanchett - not someone I am a big fan of.

Go ahead and see the movie. But only if you are extremely frustrated in life, have enough money, have enough time and have no other movie to see.

Posted by satosphere at 7:22 PM

February 10, 2005
Donsen's Law
The specialist learns more and more about less and less until, finally, he knows everything about nothing; whereas the generalist learns less and less about more and more until, finally, he knows nothing about everything.


Is this cabbage?

Is this cabbage?
One mite argue.
You mite even go to the extent of saying that this is beetroot.

I beg to differ. This is cabbage. Because cabbage is what I cut. One whole cabbage taking an entire hour to cut. And equally difficult to cook because of the quantity of cabbage.

The surprising thing about this cabbage is its color. I have never seen one like this. So when my eyes rested on this one at the local grocery store last Sunday, it immediately went into the cart. And I was looking forward (and trying to get time to cut and cook this monstrosity) to making it. It actually required two kadais / karahis of the same size as above to make it. Cabbage, of course, shrinks a lot while cooking.

Another thing that took me back was when I packed some of it and had it for lunch four hours later. It had transformed from this color to the color of the Royal Blue Ink. Luckily, it doesnt spoil that fast.

So much for cabbages.

Posted by satosphere at 1:46 AM

February 05, 2005
Donohue's Law
Anything worth doing is worth doing for money.

Career Fair

Every semester, the ECAC (equivalent to your college's Placement Office)holds a career fair where companies come to give information about their company, and hopefully find some prospective recruits.

The Frank Erwin Center on the inside, taken from the very top.
Some companies which you cannot see in this medley include the IBM, Sun, Qualcomm, HP, National Instruments.

And even this year, it was held at the Frank Erwin Center, a place which was originally designed as a boxing court (or more infamously as a WWE arena). Many bigshot companies - Intel, AMD, Freescale, TI, IBM, NI come about here. Most of them look for full time position, and some look for Internships and more for Co-ops (whereby the students work full time at the company as well take classes in the University, the Co-op being considered as another course. Great way of earning money though.)

Most of the seniors say that it is a farce; that the company just comes so that the ties with the University are not broken, and that applying online would yield much better results that coming to the fair.

Apart from getting to know companies, I come to the fair in order to collect goodies; all of the companies are giving freebies. Stationary dominates, some influential onces also give Tees, and some other give some interesting paraphernalia.

I ended up coming home with about 20 pens, a pack of cards, a couple of T-shirts and many odd trifles.
Atleast the pens will sustain me for an year atleast.

Posted by satosphere at 9:30 PM

February 02, 2005
Dolly Parton's Principle
The bigger they are, the harder it is to see your shoes.


I am not the person that I was when I came to Austin.
Sure, I changed in the last six months. But it is not that change.
It is an intrinsic change. A change of the mental attitude.
Especially over the last 2 months.

Its that I started going to the gym. Regularly. Very regularly.
No. It is not a New Year resolution meant to be broken. It is something that I plan to do for a long time.

Back in India, I never used to find time to go to the gym. However long the day used to be. I always ended up finding some excuse not to go. Either it was this interesting book to read, or the movie to go, or the match to watch or academic work to be done. And all around I saw people going there, earnestly, leaving a very guilty hole in my heart.
But that didnt change me.

In Austin, what started the transformation was the weather, I would say. It was comfortably more cooler to exert myself in such sweaty activities. It started with plain jogging. My timing of classes also helped me in that I never had any early morning classes. But as the days progressed by, they became colder, and I became busier, and then I had to stop it once and for all. It never occured to me to go to the gym.

One fine day, after the semester was over, my friends invited me to play racketball.
Me, a complete novice, playing racketball, looked as out of place blue in brite red. I, of course, ended up banging my head and twisting my ankle. A swollen head, not much unlike what you would see in a Tom and Jerry Cartoon developed. That firm imprint on my mind, literally, forced me never to play it again.
After that Accident, I wandered around to the work out lounge, and grabbed the near exercycle.

It began with that. For the past 40 days.

Now every day, I manage to find the ubiquitous one hour that I cant do anything else; and I wander over to the gym for an hour on the treadmill, crowd permitting.
Even though I get physically tired, I get mentally alert, very alert. Enough even for a 3 hour long lecture.

Atleast I wont feel guilty about all the free pizzas I eat.

Posted by satosphere at 9:00 AM


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