Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Second Life Denied

There has recently been a lot of talk about Second Life. It is a huge simulator, with a grid of computing muscle in it. It simulates 3D life, and it has a decent business model too..

From whatever I have read in Wikipedia and several blogs, it goes like this:

They have created a virtual world, which you can enter by launching their client (after installing it in your system). They stream the 3d Content to your client, which renders them on your screen. Each user might be playing around in some part of the Second Life.. It seems to be a good engineering marvel, as they will have to simulate the 3D environment in their Grid, render them and then stream them to the client. The client has to reconstruct them and show it..

It seems that of recent it has been receiving massive attention across the globe and access to the second life is getting difficult. I instlaled the latest binary from their site and launched only to see that SecondLife.exe was running 100% all the time.. On my desktop it wouldnt budge to connect (it loads the first screen where you enter First Name, Last Name and password) and says Unable to connect due to protocol (some thing)... and possible reason attributed for that is Internet connection does not exist. I m sure I m connected to the internet in my desktop.. Second life denied!! :(

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Star Gazing with Stellarium

Today, I did star gazing. My room mate, Rajesh accompanied me. I used Stellarium for Star Gazing. The sky was better. There were only a few cirrus clouds, which didn’t deter us from seeing at least a few stars. The last time I tried seeing, we had Rain clouds. So, it was difficult to spot even a few stars. But this time it was lot better. This time too, I made the mistake of not taking any compass with me. But, to my rescue, the Moon was bright and shining. The first thing to do was to orient the direction of Moon in Stellarium to that in the Sky. Once that was done, things became easier. Sirius was very bright and was the first star to be spotted easily. I was also able to find the Orion constellation, along with Betelgeuse, Canis-Minor. It was cold at the terrace, with the temperature around 15˚C. The best part I liked about the software is its maneuverability.

I am pasting the screenshot of Stellarium position of the stars below. All stars that I was able to see are marked with a white square. I gazed only with naked eyes; no sophisticated instruments were involved in star gazing except the laptop.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

School Invitation

Enclosed the invitation for all josephites..

The mokkai/movie called Sivappadhikaaram

There are several ways in which you can waste your time.. The one way I got myself caught into was to see this movie. It is called Sivappadhikaaram (also spelt Sivappadhikaram ) .

Let me first tell you what is great about this movie:
  1. It has some good story concept - based on Nattupura Paadal ( )..
  2. The film is only 2.5 hours :-)... You really dont have to commit suicide for the predicament at the theatre, after all, just like every good thing has an end, every bad thing has an end too :D.
Nothing else...

The pre film events were great, I paid Rs. 70 for the movie at Vetri Theatre (went with my sister). While going to the theatre, I took an auto. I had a fight with the auto guy, since he demanded Rs. 15, while it was normal for me to pay only Rs. 10, because my house was so close to the track. That in itself was a bad omen, I should have taken that seriously and went back home. Pity me, I never minded that and I assume that was one of the biggest mistake I made before the movie. Another big mistake i made was swapping the movie ticket. I actually got the ticket for Rendu, then later decided to watch this movie and swapped the ticket.

The guy at the theater sold me saying that it was a back seat and not a front seat in the balcony. First After getting to the theatre, I found that it was irrelevant. After all, there were less than 20 people in the balcony.. huh!

To give you heads up about the film, we have 2 parts. The first part is supposed to show Nattupura paadal in the most interesting way (which it does, but makes you boring to the core). The second part is supposed to be action packed, but it ends up being fun packed (although I would say, the saving grace was the hero Vishal). I have seen Vishal's first movie, which was hit, and I think he deserves a good position as a "casual" hero in the Tamil film Industry. His acting was awesome in the first movie, but in this movie, nah! his acting cudnt save the sinking ship :(.

It all started great, the first to have entry in the film was the heroine. There was great whistles for her. I for one was perplexed to see how much popularity she had, only later to know that she was one of the saving grace in the first half. At the end of the film, you go out confused why the hell they needed a heroine, whose role in the movie ends unclear.

The hero entry is great, with a nattupura song. I generally skip songs.. and I hoped I had a remote when the songs came so that I can skip them :(.. But lemme tell you the truth that there were a few songs that were really good.. (but they dont find themselves significantly saving the movie when you watch).. I really wished that they also provide ropes for free for all those who want to commit suicide... seriously.. (it shdnt be more than Rs. 20) and they charge Rs. 70 for a ticket.

It was great fun actually commenting on the story.. After sometime, I felt something was troubling my leg; and yes it was a RAT. I probably think that the rat really wanted to find some place to hide itself from this "bleeding" story.. :(..

The second half was even better. All that it looked to me was comments on the film were more hilarious and intersting than the movie. In the story, Raghuvaran actually wants to compile a book on Nattupura Songs. There is a group of people, with Raghuvaran the father of heroine and Raghuvaran's childhood friends. They ask him what is the reason of publishing the book when no one would read. I think the script writer would have become enlightened, had he applied the same sentence on the film.. There is also a place where the hero says that there are 12 parts in the book and one of them was bereavement. I just hoped that they had it, so that I can cry out as much for sitting and watching such a movie..:((

I really wished to get out before the interval. The only reason I was in the theater was that I paid 70 bucks. :(...

Returning back from the film, I decided not to take Auto because i really dint want to spend even a penny more, even indirectly related to the movie :-).. and yes I walked home all the way
hoping that mokkai is not everything in life, and there exists a life beyond that.

I still swear that it is a great movie, although the script is flawed to the core. The hero is totally under utilized and I really pity the Producer. Coming out of the theatre, you get the feeling that they copied similar movie's script from Gentleman till Ramana. Makes you yawn..

Caveat: This review is my personal view of the film. It in no way is the final view.. If you really want to know how the film is, please goto theatre and see.. Tamil Film Industry needs people to see in order to improve its quality. Hence, you should consider my review a second thought, if you want to support the industry.

The film also has some good review. You can read that here:
Hindu's Review

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