Feb 28, 2009

Orkut is infected by jammer worm....

I was in the browsing centre to fill my blog with more nonsense. Normally, I open gmail, orkut and blogger whenever I am in the browsing centre. Today, when I opened Orkut, I got a warning saying, "orkut is sending viruses to your pc. To protect your pc close this window. orkut is infected by jammer worm", and the Internet Explorer window closed by itself.

For a moment, I thought some freeware anti virus installed on the computer was misbehaving. I tried opening Mozilla FireFox, it said that one of the dlls was missing and the window closed by itself. I googled for "orkut is infected by jammer worm". The window closed by itself, when I clicked on the search button, after warning me that orkut is infected by jammer worm.

I tried pinging to http://www.orkut.com/ and the command prompt closed by itself! By then it had occured to my manda buddhi that the computer has been infected by a not so dangerous virus. I opened internet explore and typed http://www.thisisnotorkut.com/. The window closed by itself, of course after warning me that orkut sends viruses to my pc. I pinged to http://www.thisisnotorkut.com/. Same result!

That meant that the virus was just reading my key strokes and whenever it found the word "orkut" on the url bar, it just closed the internet explorer window. (Google passes the search string as query strings in the URL and that is why the window closed when I tried googling on "Orkut is infected by jammer.") I checked the processes that were running. I googled for the meaning and use of the processes. (I found http://www.file.net/ has the listing of most of the processes, with adequate explanations.) I killed unwanted processes initiated by "user".

The problem was resolved after killing "win.exe". File.net says some viruses camouflage themselves as win.exe. And, yeah, Mozilla Firefox started working after this. Looks like the virus was detecting the launch of Mozilla Firefox.

Feb 22, 2009


Time was 3 A.M. I was sleeping. I heard foot steps. "There are about 10 people. They are carrying weapons. They will beat me up and take away my money!", I thought. The foot steps were nearing. I didn't have time to think. I was in a panic. Now the people were near the door. They pushed the door and the door opened with a cold creak. I jumped from my bed. I was afraid of the people who were at the door, but somehow managed to go to the door. My cousin was standing there!
He had come from Kochin. Normally when he comes to Bangalore, he stays in my room. This time, the trip was not a planned one and he couldn't inform me about it. Coincidentally, I had forgotten to latch the door. As he walked up to my room, my mind was dreaming about a gang coming to rob me! This was the most scary nightmare!

Feb 20, 2009


I am a regular customer of this middle aged banana vendor who sells bananas on a pushcart near Aiyappa Swamy temple, Madiwala. He starts his business by 9 in the morning and shuts by 10 in the night. He wears a black jerkin and has a beedi between his lips sometimes. He is a cheerful person. I have been watching him for 3+ years now. He is in the same place, selling fresh bananas everyday. I have wondered if he doesn't feel bored about his job, if his income is sufficient for him to survive in Bangalore, if he has never worried about a better future, if he has never thought of doing something better in life. I don't know who is to define what is better, though!

The other day, just for fun, I told him that the previous day I had got bigger bananas for the same price. "Howdu howdu", he said laughing loudly. He didn't bother to justify, he didn't bother to react.
Yesterday, when I enquired the price of the bananas, he said, "Three".
"Three or free?", I asked smiling. He laughed loudly!

Sometimes, I wonder about the secret of his joy. Probably, he doesn't think about it and that is why he is happy! I have started respecting this person for his attitude. Life looks very simple and easy. If a person selling bananas can laugh like a carefree child, anybody can laugh, no matter what problems they have. I told this to my friend and he said, "It has nothing to do with your job!" Yes, exactly, that's my point!

Feb 15, 2009

Salaam Bombay

I watched "Salaam Bombay" last night, courtesy Sunil's laptop and his movie craze. He told me, "This is SlumDog Millionaire's baap ka baap.", before playing the movie. I would say "SlumDog Millionaire" can't even be the grandson. "Salaam Bombay" is class apart. Salaam Mira Nair!

It is the story of Krishna alias chai pau. He enters Bombay looking to earn Rs 500. He ends up killing Baba, the mastermind behind the drug trade and prostitution in that part of Bombay. The wikipedia article, as always, has an accurate account of the plot and other details.

The script is brilliant. The picturisation is perfect. The locations are real. The actors are great. The undercurrent of the movie is optimism. The intention of the movie is not to attract the attention by showing filthy things, but to present the problems. The intention is not to cash in on sympathy, but to educate the viewer about the problem and thereby provoke questions in his mind. The director's restraint in handling the subject is clearly visible. Full marks to Mira Nair.

The theme music by L.Subramaniam is brilliant. It represents the athma of the movie very effectively.

Some good links of videos on YouTube:
Theme: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XZhpnLPL990&NR=1
3 scenes: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ytuN_-unCG4&NR=1
Escape from the prison: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=do9Dm3sHiSY&NR=1
Wedding Reception: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kqXFCPT2mh4&NR=1
Music Score: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ya1CsLVfmSo&feature=related


Kids on the street:

Two trees in the Lal Bagh Botanical Garden:

Feb 14, 2009


Notes about people and life:

1. Respect people for what they are - normal human beings, not for your definition of what they are. Having your own definition is an ego display. You are bound to feel cheated when they don't act as per your definition.
2. Don't forgive people. Forgiving people is an ego display. Instead forget that there was a mistake to be forgiven.
3. Forget ego thoughts.
4. Do nothing once a week.
5. Love life, not only yours, love everybody's life, more each day. That fixes most of the problems.

Feb 11, 2009


Yesterday, when I was about to leave after posting something new in the blog, the owner of the browsing centre asked his chela: "Taak spelling enu?"
The chela, feeling important, said : "Taalk or Taak?"
Owner: I want to Taak to you. ee Taak.
Me : Taak spellingu -- T-A-L-K.
Owner (He is head to toe English now) : Oh, is it? Okay.
Meanwhile, Chela : Yes, yes. Taak is T-A-L-K.
Me : eshTu aythu?
Owner : What time did you come? (Checks the register) 20 Rs.
Me: AshTu aytha? Oh, okay, correct.
Owner : Yes, you came at 7:30.
Me : Howdu.
Owner : Yes.

Hey, come on, how can he Taak to me in Kannada! He is the guy who connects MadiwaaLa to the world of internet! He Taaks only the Universal Language!
Okay, I don't want to make fun of anybody, but I want to tell him, "Magane, Kannada mathaDidre maryade enu kaDime aagolla! English mathaDorella buddhivantharu anthanu alla! Irali biDu, ninage heLi prayojana illa ansuthe."

Feb 10, 2009


Some movies I watched recently:

The water horse, legend of the deep : Directed by Jay Russell, it is just another fantasy film. Special effects are good, locations are great, but the plot is not well developed.
The main character is a boy who comes across a mysterious egg and takes it home. The story develops with an unknown creature hatching from the egg.
The creature, the water horse, that hatches out of the egg is named "Crusoe" and the creature becomes the boy's best friend. We are made to believe that the water horse is a huge but lovable creature. The bonding between the boy and the water horse is the theme of the story. The theme is cute because it is always cute when a huge animal forms a bond with a human being. Is this a cliche? Maybe.

The boy's father, a sailor, is missing after the ship he was in, sunk during the war. The boy doesn't believe that his father is dead. The boy's memories about his father are shown as flashbacks in the narrative.
The boy's mother looks confused. Confused about what? Her role, probably. There are hints of a love story developing between this lady and the handyman of the house. This parallel plot is not developed and we are made to feel that it is not important. Was the script writer (or the director) not confident about this story line? Probably, yes.

I was not able to connect to the characters. I didn't like watching it. At no point I found me saying "Brilliant".

Accident (Kannada, 1985): This was directed by Shankar Nag. This is the story of a spoiled son of a rich father, a politician. One night, this spoiled son drives his car on people sleeping on the footpath and kills 12 of them during the act. After the incident, he drives back home, washes the car, changes the tyres and tries to be normal. This accident and the following incidents form the plot of the movie.
However, the evidences lead the police to the son. The father comes to know about the incident. He is shocked, but doesn't want to lose the elections and decides to play the political game. The cop who was working on this case is asked to go on a long leave. Frustrated and helpless, the cop calls up a journalist and discloses the details of the accident and the culprit.
Shankar Nag plays the role of the journalist. Rest of the movie is about the journalist's fight against the culprits.

I liked the movie. The characters look real and convincing. There is a poetic justice in the climax and you are made to believe that truth triumphs. But that is the director's attempt to end the movie with a positive note. Thumbs up to Shankar Nag.

The alphabet killer : The article in wikipedia explains the plot better than I can do. I liked the movie. The main character is schizophrenic. The hallucinations of the character are effectively used in the narrative. At one point, her hallucinations become yours too.
The twists in the plot come at right points. The narrative is not desperate and doesn't try to impress the viewer. Plus, there is no logical conclusion. It just presents a story and allows the user to decide on the meaning. At least, I like to believe that way.

Dostana : Not worth watching. In fact, it is a crime watching it. Most of the times, Bollywood sells nonsense. But this one is extreme. I hated it for cliches it uses. I hated it for the treatment of characters. I hated it for the laziness of the script writer. I hated it, I don't remember for what else.

Vaaranam Ayiram : Again, the wikipedia article explains better. I liked the movie. The script is not tight and the director has managed to use this as a positive point. The movie doesn't try to prove any point. It shows the transformation of a boy to a man, in a refreshing way.
The female characters are dressed up like normal human beings and not like models ready to walk on the ramp. Phew! It is such a relief to see normal human beings on screen. That is the first thing I liked. I liked Surya for the way he portrayed the two characters. I liked the way the kidnap incident in the movie is handled. I somehow felt that the director was just trying to show the transformation in the character. I felt that the fight in the kidnap incident was not to impress the viewer.

The movie tries to tell many things about life, without giving in to popular beliefs. The underlying emotion of the movie is the love towards life. When I realised this, I liked the movie more.

Feb 5, 2009

Some more snaps


Tarakari beka tarakari :)

Fish eye effect

Sun rise @ MadiwaLa

This is what you get when you shoot in the dark!

Soap bubbles in a bucket