Sunday, July 16, 2006

Today, went to drop my sister at her place. En route, we stopped at a Food World and while my sister was busy shopping, I was sitting inside the car. An interesting incident happened: a little kid dressed like Hanuman, including a long tail that went all the way up to his neck and missing only a mace, was going rounds in the parking area. He kept b(e|u)gging people for money. He came to me and I refused to give him money. Then he said something in a language that I could not understand. I told him that I did not understand. Then he gestured that he was very hungry. So, I gave him a 2 rupee coin (hunger sentiment generally works out pretty well!). When he accepted the money and turned back, I touched his tail (curiosity). It felt like a rubber tube or something like that. I'm sure it must have been heavy for that little kid. Anyways, the kid did not sense it (it was not a real tail) and he left for the next car.

Sometime passed and another car came. With arms streched out, our Hanuman rushed towards the car. Inside, a little kid about the same age as our Hanuman saw our "lord" and started shouting: Hanuman!, hanuman! Our hanuman looked at the kid and asked for money. The kid in turn joined his hands and bowed before our Hanuman. Our hanuman immediately withdrew his stretched arms and walked away. The kid in the car though kept screaming: Hanuman, hanuman!. I'm sure our Hanuman must have felt embarassed. I felt sorry for him. And this happened on the day after Kamaraj's birthday, the man who introduced free education and mid-day meal for the kids in Tamilnadu. Pity...

Sunday, July 09, 2006

CMake -> Jam

Today, I switched the build systems of peixes/acharya and the IMLI libraries to Jam. Previously, I used autotools for the IMLI libs and CMake for peixes. CMake is pretty nice and it has recently been adopted by the KDE and Scribus projects. From a CMake project, project files can be created for KDevelop and Visual Studio. However, I use neither of them. I use Emacs + CEDET + ECB for my coding tasks at home. I use the Mingw toolset on Windoze though I want to be able to build peixes using other toolsets like OpenWatcom and DigitalMars C++ .

Using Jam makes this quite easy. The version I'm using is Freetype's Jam which is a slightly enhanced version of the Perforce one. Then there is Boost's version of Jam which is based on Freetype's Jam but heavily modified to suit large projects.

Some of the advantages of Jam is listed here.

The other nice feature of Jam is the default collection of rules and actions are compiled into the executable itself which makes it very compact without the need for having a dozen files in /usr/share .

I've also switched the IMLI lib to Jam from autotools. Although the autotools does a lot more than just build, it is too heavy for such a simple library. The code is plain ANSI C and does not use any platform specific extensions so there is no need for "configuring" the build. In fact, the size of the configure script is twice as that of all the library code put together.

Next step is to try building with all the available toolsets.

Monkey menace...

There is a huge monkey that has entered our colony raiding all the houses. It has a particular liking for waste baskets. Yesterday, it attempted "restoring" the items of the recycling bin in the backyard of my house creating a big mess. The day before, it raided a neighbour's house and smashed 6-7 eggs in the process. A few minutes ago, it tried to enter my room through the balcony. Fortunately, I managed to close the door in time. The last thing my computer needs is another monkey sitting in front of it ;) . Because of this stupid monkey, I had to close all doors and windows thereby blocking the nice breeze that was blowing across the house. Damn...

For the last week or so I've been experiencing severe pain in the wrist of my right hand. Yesterday, saw the doc and he said a ganglion cyst has developed in the wrist. It seems in most cases, these cysts disappear without any special treatment but in case they hang on, they have to be removed (sucked out using a needle). The next check up will be on Friday. Till then I'm on pain killers.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Swami Nithyananda's Mahamantra

My sister recently underwent a 10 day training program at Dhyanapeetam, Swami Parahamsa Nithyananda's ashram, located at Bidadi near Bangalore. She got me a few books and a CD which introduces a meditation technique called Mahamantra . It is a very simple technique and all you have to do is hum for 20 minutes and do nothing for the next 10 minutes. The humming should be as loud and deep as possible. Also the time period between successive hums should be as minimal as possible. The only prerequisite is that the stomach should be empty when doing this meditation. In the introduction, the swamiji says that this technique was adapted from Tibetan Buddhists and it is practised best early in the morning. Faithfully, I started off at 6am and finished around 6:40am. Although I could not sense any big change in me, I was definitely feeling light (ie, less heavy). I think part of that feeling comes from the fact that today is a Saturday and I do not have much to do ;) .

Hope to continue the meditation daily and post my experiences here.

The Swamiji's official website is here.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Hyderabad trip...

I was in Hyderabad the whole of last week to finish some things at RFC. Also, Indrani, BGa and Saroo have all quit and thought it would be nice to see them once before they move on to their respective destinations. It turned out to be a very relaxing trip. The daily routine of eating, chatting, watching tv, sleeping and no work would have made even Garfield jealous.

On some days, Sayandeb joined us and told us jokes from his work. The first time I met him, two years ago, he appeared to be a quiet person who prefers to work alone (atleast that is what Nithin told me). But this time, I was completely surprised by the volume... especially at 2am in the morning! . Too many Telugu films perhaps... ;)

dkg garu is another person who amazes me with his uptime. The man would do two shifts back to back, come home and straightaway pick a book or watch a film and continue without any fuss! . Wonder where these people get their stamina from...

Sayan took us to the tomb of a French General, Mon. Raymond (a.k.a Moosa Rahim). Very nice place (very few humans around), at a walkable distance from Indrani's place. Located on top of a mound, it offered a nice view of some parts of the city. When we went there, a strong breeze was blowing across. Fanstastic feeling to stand tall on a rock and face the breeze.

In RFC, met ABC and discussed a few chess related things like opening repertoire etc. He got me the scores of my games against Sasikiran and D.V Prasad from a rating tournament held in Salem long back. I lost a lot of scoresheets of my games when I shifted my residence in 2002. Have to archive the ones that I have and put them online.

In the evenings, did a lot of shopping. Came close to buying a HP Pavilion dv5200TX notebook. But the ICICI deal was temporarily not available for this month. Hopefully, should be available next month. 66,000 spread over nine months looks like a good deal.

All in all, it was a nice trip.Thoroughly enjoyed it. A big thank you to Indrani and dkg garu for putting up with a bugger that is me.