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Words. Wisdom. Winners.

My World Your Eyes 1

I start a regular PhotoFeature which captures day-to-day life…from my phone, camera…my eyes!

My World My Eyes – 1

A road-side astrologer predicting the lives of multiple people…at one go!

Community Prediction

Obama wins…WHAT…???

In the biggest WTF this year, Obama has won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize for “his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples,” the Norwegian Nobel Committee said, citing his outreach to the Muslim world and attempts to curb nuclear proliferation.

ummm…WHAT…???

He has been in office for friggin 8 months…or 9…whatever…! Even more…he would have been in office around 2 weeks even the deadline (Feb 01) of the Nobel Prize closed. So basically, someone was so overwhelmed with the Obama “Yes We Can” that he went ahead and nominated him. And the committee too was so mesmerized that they friggin awarded him!

Dont get me wrong here…I like the guy…he seems nice and is trying to do stuff. But honestly, he speaks more than he delivers. We have seen enough instances of his reaching out to the masses like never before, ala Rahul gandhi, but cmon, with the shit that the US is going through he better be doing stuff too. To me this award is more of an appreciation of what he intends to do, than a reward for what he has done. And hey…thats not what the award is meant to be for!

In bigger WTF…did you know that some jackass nominated Hitler for the awards too!

THIS is utterly insane!

IF this is true…this has got to be the sexiest thing ever!

PhotoSketch: Internet Image Montage from tao chen on Vimeo.

We present a system that composes a realistic picture from a simple
freehand sketch annotated with text labels. The composed picture
is generated by seamlessly stitching several photographs in agreement
with the sketch and text labels; these are found by searching
the Internet. Although online image search generates many inappropriate
results, our system is able to automatically select suitable
photographs to generate a high quality composition, using a filtering
scheme to exclude undesirable images. We also provide a novel
image blending algorithm to allow seamless image composition.
Each blending result is given a numeric score, allowing us to find
an optimal combination of discovered images. Experimental results
show the method is very successful; we also evaluate our system using
the results from two user studies.

Google Wave – is up for sale!

Flashback 2003! A concept named Gmail had launched and I was a strong Hotmail follower back then. But then, remember that those were days when there was no facebook, orkut, twitter and Mark Zuckerberg was still under-age (almost)!

So moving email addresses was no big deal. It just meant an auto forward and it wasnt that I had some 1,000 friends that I had to update on my email change!

So I moved…to GMail (thank god for that!). And within some 3-4 months of use…I noticed something. There were some 4 free invites in my accounts, for the service (it was, for the longest time ever, an invitation-only service!)

As a kind gesture, I sent one to a friend of mine at MSU, only to be told later that he has auctioned that invite for a crazy USD 80!! on ebay!! holy friggin shit…!

Well…I am still friends with that guy (infact I gave him another invite…after what he did…what was I thinking!) and auctioned one more for 45 dollars myself! :)

And today…I smile and see the same happening to Google Wave – its up for sale on ebay! :)

for those clueless about Google Wave, here is what you need to see

Some things are better when they’re not free

its human tendency to consider things that are free, as fishy!

Consider yourself..in normal life. While almost all of us would jump in joy if someone offered their services free…would we also not have that edgy feeling “why would they do it for free…whats the fine print”. Cynicism is fundamental to the human nature

Yet…its fascinating how the same individual doesn’t blink an eyelid when services are offered for free on the Internet. Its the done thing…everything on the Internet is FREE. Google is…facebook is…twitter is (well almost!)…! People would much rather go for free services on the Internet than pay for stuff…! As if suddenly, FREE on the Internet is not fishy anymore.

They are not entirely wrong. There are several ‘brands’ that offer themselves free on the Internet. Brands that people would trust and have trusted. So if an NYTimes or a ToI offers its news for free…people dont consider it fishy. Its not as if ToI would give stale (or worse still, untrue) news for free members and the ‘real’ news for paid members. It cant.

But personally…I treat ‘Paid’ as a form of commitment. Think about it…SecondShaadi can also be a free service. But would it be a better one at that, if free? Leave aside the revenue problem…the bigger problem will be the nuisance that will get created because of this “free” service. Across fake profiles, spam profiles, spam forums and worse troubled genuine members.

So payments is a form of self selection. The system is selecting the genuine ones from the non-genuine ones. Not that all free members are not genuine…maybe some never really feel the need to pay because of several reasons (too expensive, no matching profiles etc). But the fact that you have paid…has to reflect genuineness.

Even that is not an easy step. Pricing the service too low can also mean the same problems as that of free services. But second guessing what’s the users threshold of “just perfectly priced that I can actually pay and yet not be genuine” is very tricky!

Only last week, we had a member pay up to upgrade her membership on SS. It became obvious in a day that she meant trouble. Spamming! So clearly even out highest priced product was worth it for her to upgrade and spam. She saw value even in that amount! Could we have guessed that..! No..!

Seth Godin has this excellent piece on the same issue. He suggests that money creates a sort of friction that is important for some services. Because it reflects commitment! Recommended read

This sums it up – Commitment slows things down in the short run, but ultimately aligns interests.

16 girls to woo Rahul Mahajan! 16 girls to who????

WHO are these girls…why…why…why would they do this to themselves…AND to the world around them! I wanna meet these chicks man…

actually…nevermind!

Brilliance of the article is captured in this one statement

“Swayamvar Season 2 while following a similar format as its predecessor will have a complete unique spin. 16 men were wooing Rakhi, now will 16 ladies woo Rahul or will Rahul woo 16 ladies?

i love democracy…

…i especially love how it makes itself so flexible that the very rights people have, become their weapons to play around with the system!

What the F*** is Nalini thinking????

Ummm…hang on…just a minute…! Was it you who ummm…was involved in the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi?? Huh..? Yes? Oh ok…! So what is it that you are demanding now? Ohhh…an early release…oh thats why you are on a fast…! Aaahh….makes sense..! Please go ahead. Please!

“cattle class” has just lost its humor

Cattle

1. Large rudimentary animal that are bred for slaughter and processed into food products
2. Short for ‘cattle class’ which pertains to flying economy class (or ‘coach’ in America) on a flight. It is called this mainly because many people are crammed into such a small space for an extended period of time and most of the time are treated like animals.

In other words, Cattle Class is not a reference to the people travelling in economy, rather a reflection of the apathy of the service provider towards such people! Which, if you really ask me, is true, especially of the Railways (and nowadays also of airlines!). We have all been a victim of stinking toilets, torn seats, dirty linen and kullad dahi

So I really fail to understand the big shit about Tharoor’s remarks on twitter. I might be conservative here, but I am on that side of the country today which suggests that Politicians need to be politically correct all the time! That by definition is a politician! He cant be insensitive to the masses.

But my contention here is that Tharoor wasnt! The friggin INC is suggesting that he was! No…wait…let me rephrase that…the INC is holding Tharoor by the throat, blocking his nose, opening his mouth…and making sure he gulps the fact that he was insensitive in his remarks! He WASNT!

And now….he goes to Soniaji to beg for mercy…amidst demands of his resignation! Holy friggin shit..! He has been told to be careful

Tharoor’s tweets from now on, will be such

cattle class in solidarity with all our holy cows

(Twitter HAS to be flexible enough to allow dashes in its tweets, from now on! Government can friggin fail)

What’s ironical is that all this tamasha could not have come at a better time! Duronto…madam mamta (not kulkarni) non-stop trains project…has reintroduced the 3-tier system (long disbanded) in the side berth!

INC – do you now understand who is being referred to..in “cattle class”

Well…atleast someone has a sense of humor in the party…!

What…he has been asked to resign…!!??? Had to be…!

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