Having written my first Malayalam poem, I was seized by a desire to put it to music, and I came up with something I felt was reasonably good. I’m posting the recording of the music, in my horrible voice. The recording is poor and poorer is my singing(I can’t reach the upper notes, so I sang them in my false voice), but still it should give a good idea of the music I have in my mind.
May 21, 2010
1. ഒരു ദേശത്തിന്റെ കഥ – എസ്. കെ. പൊറ്റേക്കാട്ട് – it’s become one of my favourites- though I’ve read it, I like to relive certain portions now and then.
2. ആരോഗ്യനികേതനം – താരാശങ്കര് ബാനര്ജി – recommended by Ammamma. Searched for it at many book shops and finally got it through Harimama’s publisher contacts.
3. മയ്യഴിപ്പുഴയുടെ തീരങ്ങളില് – എം. മുകുന്ദന് – recommended by Harimama.
4. പ്രഥമപ്രതിശ്രുതി – ആശാപൂര്ണ്ണാദേവി – Jnanpeeth award winning novel, first in a brilliant trilogy on the lives and position of women in the Indian society. Have read the other two. I feel they’re relevant even today.
5. പഥേര് പാഞ്ചാലി – ബിഭൂതിഭൂഷണ് ബന്ദ്യോപാധ്യായ
6. ഖസാക്കിന്റെ ഇതിഹാസം – ഒ.വി.വിജയന് – haven’t read this classic yet.
7. ഓടയില് നിന്ന് – പി. കേശവദേവ്
8. നാടന് പ്രേമം, മൂടുപടം – പൊറ്റേക്കാട്ടിന്റെ രണ്ടു നോവലുകള്
9. The Complete Works of Kahlil Gibran
10. Selected Essays of Rabindranath Tagore
April 17, 2010
I was going over the area of NITC in Wikimapia, when I suddenly realized that the satellite images of the place were somewhat old. In fact, it shows the campus in its state even before I joined the college, but not much older, since the only difference is the absence of the Central Computer Centre and the new Mini Canteen.
Over the last four years I’ve seen acres of forest give way to concrete structures and I thought I’d just highlight the changes I’ve seen on the map. These estimates are very rough and have been made from my countless walks around the campus. They are very conservative estimates and I suspect a lot more area has been cleared, as I have not even been to each and every corner of the campus.
November 3, 2009
It’s a great website- a comprehensive database of Malayalam film music.
At the moment I’m busy downloading all songs by Johnson, year by year, using it as a reference. I never cease to be amazed by the quality of the music in those days, almost every other song is unique and ever green. When I listen to these songs, I always wish I had been born some twenty-thirty years earlier, and lived my youth at the time when Johnson/Ouseppachan/Jerry Amaldev were at their best.
September 20, 2009
I happened to learn just now that the next release of Ubuntu GNU/Linux distribution will be called Lucid Lynx. For those who are not familiar with it, Ubuntu is famous for the funny code names of its releases. It’s always in the form- “Adjective Animal”, for example Breezy Badger, Hardy Heron etc. Besides they go along in the alphabetical order. If the current release is J, the next will be K.
This brought to my mind the memory of a discussion with a few of my friends about this very topic, when a friend, Arjun, suggested a code name when all the letters will be exhausted and they’d have to start again at “A”. Guess what?
December 18, 2008
We are accustomed to thinking of learning as good in and of itself. But as environmental educator David Orr reminds us, our education up till now has in some ways created a monster… If today is a typical day on planet Earth, we will lose 116 square miles of rainforest, or about an acre a second. We will lose another 72 square miles to encroaching deserts, as a result of human mismanagement and overpopulation. We will lose 40 to 100 species, and no one knows whether the number is 40 or 100. Today the human population will increase by 250,000. And today we will add 2,700 tons of chlorofluorocarbons to the atmosphere and 15 million tons of carbon. Tonight the Earth will be a little hotter, its waters more acidic, and the fabric of life more threadbare… It is worth noting that this is not the work of ignorant people. It is, rather, largely the result of work by people with BAs, BSs, LLBs, MBAs, and PhDs…
– from What is Education for, by David Orr
Like the author says, one of the most common myths associated with education is that ignorance is a solvable problem. “Ignorance is not a solvable problem, but rather an inescapable part of the human condition. The advance of knowledge always carries with it the advance of some form of ignorance. In 1930, after Thomas Midgely Jr. discovered CFCs, what had previously been a piece of trivial ignorance became a critical, life-threatening gap in the human understanding of the biosphere. No one thought to ask “what does this substance do to what?” until the early 1970s, and by 1990 CFCs had created a general thinning of the ozone layer worldwide. With the discovery of CFCs knowledge increased; but like the circumference of an expanding circle, ignorance grew as well.”
Another myth is that “knowledge is increasing and by implication human goodness. There is an information explosion going on, by which I mean a rapid increase of data, words, and paper. But this explosion should not be taken for an increase in knowledge and wisdom, which cannot so easily by measured. What can be said truthfully is that some knowledge is increasing while other kinds of knowledge are being lost. David Ehrenfeld has pointed out that biology departments no longer hire faculty in such areas as systematics, taxonomy, or ornithology. In other words, important knowledge is being lost because of the recent overemphasis on molecular biology and genetic engineering, which are more lucrative, but not more important, areas of inquiry. We still lack the the science of land health that Aldo Leopold called for half a century ago.”
This is a serious issue that the author addresses in his article. Our education and the presumptions on which it is based, are fundamentally flawed. And today, when we are on the verge of destroying our planet, our only home, we have to think critically about the education that’s supposed to prepare us for living a wholesome life on this planet, but has actually “fragmented the world into bits and pieces called disciplines and subdisciplines, that after 12 or 16 or 20 years of education, most students graduate without any broad integrated sense of the unity of things.”
June 30, 2008
This blog has become a year old today! Of course, I shifted from Livejournal in May, but it is a continuation of that blog. And it has been a great day, as “The Story of Phoenix” has been featured in the “Science” category of WordPress (what a coincidence!). Anyway, thank you all for reading my blog patiently! Hope you will keep coming back.
May 11, 2008
Manchester United are the champions! Deservedly so, as they kept their nerve to win the decisive last match against Wigan, 2-0 with goals from Christiano Ronaldo and Ryan Giggs. Next up is the UEFA Champions League final on May 21st between Man Utd and Chelsea. What a match that would be!
May 7, 2008
The English Premier League is all set for a thrilling climax this weekend, as Manchester United and Chelsea, who are tied on 84 points each, battle it out for the crown. Manchester United have their fate in their own hands, and would retain the title if they win away at Wigan Athletic, on goal difference, even if Chelsea win their match at home against Bolton. It’s going to be a nail-biting time for me, a Man Utd supporter. But anyway, whoever fails to win this decider doesn’t really deserve the title. It’s as simple as that!
May 6, 2008
My friend Gokul considers himself as belonging to the class of people who feel that NIT is an acronym for “Not so Interested in Technology”! This class is really big, for your information. In fact, most of the NIT student community can be put into this category. I belong to this category, as well! Really, the only reason that I, and many of my friends are studying there, is that we used to do well in exams at school. Our aptitude for engineering was never really tested anywhere. We just prepared for some entrance exams which would get us into the most prestigeous institutions in the country. But why? No one really knows! Everyone’s satisfied to get placed in some company for so-and-so many lakhs, after messing around for four years. But for what? Why should you bother…