Thoughts on Rails

Riding the Train of Thought

Archive for July 2004

The World's Largest Business

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They show a bright world in front of you. They promise a better future for you. They tell you, if you don't come to us, you won't be able to live!! And they mean business.

They have big plans all chalked out. They have different centres all catering to your 'needs' and making your lives complete.

They control a good deal of your lives! You respect them, whether you like it or not. You bow and wish a good-day to every business person passing your way. It's the only business where the business make you bake the cake and they eat it, and charge you for the whole process. If you bake the cake wrong, it's all your fault.. and it you are good – it's all their magic that helped you do the things right.

They are your educators! Pardon me, but yes I am talking about the teachers. A very big subset of the teachers / professors in the whole world are not worth being called what they like to be called – “Sir / Madam”.

How many times has it occured to you – every 'bright' student is sorounded by teachers saying “He's my student! I taught him everything he knows!” and how many 'dull' students have you seen sorrounded by teachers saying – “He's my student.. and I'm making sure that he learns here…”

I have sadly seen incidents countable on one hand in the past 10 years. Which is less than 5 such teachers who really take their responsibility seriously.

And have you ever been allowed to sit in the class without paying the fees? You _have_ to pay the fees, then why don't they teachers _have_ to deliver knowledge to everyone? It's their business… you are the customer… it's not the age when teachers were noble and knowledgeable people and they taught because they liked to. Today many teachers are failures in all other walks of life – they wanted to be engineers, doctors and scientists – could not make, became teachers.. now all they care for is their pay – your money.

The reason why I wrte is simple – when I ask that I be taught the subject as deep as the syllabus says it – I get a “You should do it yourself” and when I make a nice project for an exibition, the teachers want to say “I taught him all that”. That is One reason why I did not participate in the Computer Science Dept. Exibition last year.. another reason – they refused to give me a piece of paper saying that “This student has participated in such and such exibition and has presented such and such project” saying that “we don't have certificates to waste”. If I am not going to the college for cerificates and a degree, then why am I going there?

They have not taught me a single new thing in the last 2 and half years. And they also refuse to give me certificates for what I've learnt almost fully on my own. The only help I get is the vast library on the Internet and my (onine) friends from various countries and walks of life…

Thank you pals!

Think I'm much more cheerful now 🙂 I'll stop writing here. And as far as the bizness of education is concerned… I'll see to it when I'm ready to do some thrashing, and apply some disruptive technology in the market… till then, I'm just a plain old student, saying good morning to his teachers, whether they are really good or 4$$#0135.

Written by hiway

July 31, 2004 at 12:52 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Feels Good…

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Ah, just returned back from the outside… the lights are back and I can use the internet to log another nice experience in my.. mmm… “Life” 😀

It started about one and half hour ago… lights went bust. Probably a transformer on the distribution pole blew up – it sounded like that.

So I went to the main 'home' (Have I told you that I live in a room that is detached from the main house?.. now I have :p ) and found Mannu, my cat ready to start mewing and asking for food.. litle bastard, likes to eat food at unearthly times. Yeah it was 3:50 AM I suppose…

Anyway, so I fed him, quenched my thirst (yeah, stupid me.. had forgotten to take the bottle with me at night) and came back to sleep… after lying in the bed with the candle flickering beside me… I felt a little drowsy, blew off the candle and was about to doze off…

BANG!!

I heard the noise of metal crashing… definitely not a nice sound to hear at the wee hours of the morning, and when it has been drizzling all night… it just makes the sound mean *more* trouble.

I quickly got up, lighted the candle, hung a shirt on my shoulders, ran back to home, took the gas lamp, took the bottle i had forgotten to take in the evening and a little cotton and plaster, as I walked out the door, I saw the raincoat dangling.. took it too…

While walking down the stairs, noticed that the watchman was still sleeping… GREAT! I felt like kicking him, but then.. well he's a human, and I don't consider myself normal anymore.. so left him sleeping and took a faster than usual stride towards the main gate…

Peeked out on the road – nothing! Nothing at all… not a single vehicle…

As I turned back I noticed a little light at a distance… looked more closely – there were at least 10 people standing around a little light and towering over them was a big bus. Ah! Must have got down there… but what was the noise?

Decided to just go and check…

The people were amazed to find me there 😀 At 4 AM, somebody with a nice big light, and water and stuff… heck it isn't real 😀 Thanks to my nocturnal habits… I was almost awake and in a condition to think and act.

So after the greetings were exchanged, I asked what had happened… two tyres bursted… driver just managed to steer clear of a little shop and managed to stop without falling down the nice little trenches they have dug up by the road side – yeah the govt is working on road-widening project, the sides of the road are all dug up – upto 2.5 to 3 feet deep. It could have spelled more trouble, but luckily they were left to manage only a pair of tyres…

My role was nothing, except the 'light man' and I am glad I did not have to see any accident, blood and mangled bodies… something that I was fearing was the case. The noise was big – 2 tyres simulataneously bursted nd the metal rims hit the road with a pretty nice force… that's what I had heard.

I asked if they had been driving too fast over the previous turn… the answer was a yes. Aha! The road is so bad.. there are deep potholes and the edges of those potholes are… wicked. Good they did not burst while taking the turn, because the turn is acute – a little less than 90 degrees, but due to some odd reason, it looks like it's a big easy turn. Many trucks and buses have fallen victim to the turn… every month there are at least 2 vehicles that either bang into the wall on the side or worse, tilt on their side trying to recover from the overdrive.

The people who were cursing the luck shut up on hearing this… they _were_ lucky to be alright. I had a little chat with one guy from Pune… he manufactures UPS, Inverters etcetra … we talked about computers, driving – one of my greatest my passions and people not willing to help… and a little about the education, exams and stuff.

In the meanwhile, they stopped another bus from the same company and exchanged one of the ursted tyres for a replacement. They can carry only one at a time… so this other bus was on right time 🙂 Then they replaced both tyres and were ready to go in about an hour…

I took th lamp, wished them a safe and happy journey and returned.

It was now that I noticed that the lights of the hostel (where I live) had gone, but those of the main building were alright… they both get power from two different sources, and we have a facility to switchover the hoste'ls lights to any one of the alternative sources… I flipped a big switch… and the lights were back 🙂

Returned, got into the room… turned on the computer snad started typing this as I chatted with my buddies…

It feels nice and good to be of use to somebody, and when you expect something bad and it turns out to be much better than what you feared. I am glad I did not have to use the bandages and cotton… I hope I never will have to, but I'll keep it ready, just in case someone needs it.

I have been playing around with the new software I installed- BoaConstructor, an IDE for Python and designer for wxPython. The Deplhi and VB folks have been using similar tools… now it's my turn 😀

I remember abck when I was fluent with VB 😀 You could tell me “please do this in a such and such way… the input is this and the output is like this.. I want these facilities..” and the next day the software would be ready for you.. if it was night, else by evening 🙂

It's the case with Python now… I'm getting better at it. And with the oa at hand, it'll be MUCH easier to do RAD – one of the things that I specialize in 🙂

Alright, now it's time for the System Programming class… we should be starting learning about Assembles from tomorrow, today it will be about SIC – the SImplified Instructions Computer as described by Leyland Beck in his book – System Software. I might like to make a nice emuklator for SIC and SIC-XE sometime later…

Written by hiway

July 29, 2004 at 6:16 am

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Pointers in SmaCKEm – Python

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This morning, after pulling an all-nighter, while in a very very sleepy condition (I was actually closing my eyes and sitting still in between bursts of small coding sessions!) I wrote a small hack for SMaCKEm – Python implementation… use of pointers 😀

01 10201
02 2101
03 7102
04 1102
05 -2101
06 2102
07 1101
08 301
09 2101
10 1102
11 4010
12 6201
13 53
15 9

The above program lets you input a program – LIVE – loads it up begining from a specific address (201) and then, after you enter a HALT statement (9), program execution automatically jumps to YOUR NEW PROGRAM!!

X) 15 instructions of total fun!!

But for it to work properly, you have to enable the hack mode..

$ python smackem.py -e -f

The Python Source Code is available on http://data.freeshell.org/projects/smack/smackem.py

Enjoy!!

Written by hiway

July 26, 2004 at 5:34 pm

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I love CVS!!

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Uploaded (cvs import) my new design for the website… tar-gzipped the old one and backed up copies of it in seperate places… then checked out (cvs checkout) the latest copy of my website into ~/html on SDF.

The website is available at http://data.freeshell.org/ , the same old link – a NEW website!!! It has a lot of neat scripting and many more features and a clean design. It sports W3C certification for XHTML 1.0 STRICT Compliance and CSS Compliance.

I love technology. I love CVS.

Now updating my website is a matter of checking out the CVS if I don't have a latest/working copy and committing the changes, then updating the changes on SDF… THAT simple! No mater from where I make the changes… no matter how many different changes I make – they will all be done in a neat and organizeed fashion what's best, they will be revertable easily!!

Damn I love CVS!

Written by hiway

July 26, 2004 at 4:14 am

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More emulation!

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I completed writing a Python port of the emulator today morning. Then slept till evening. (I was coding through the night…) And now woke up, had a nice bath and am sitting at my tty again X)

Here's the note – for the record: I have completed writing 3 different emulators, each one from scratch in C++, C and Python – each one ifs better than the previous 😀

C++ and C programs are over 600 lines long, The emulator coded in Python is much more advanced w.r.t. debugging facilities and is a little over 200 lines of code – why I like Python.

Of course, there are improvements that I learnt in the Python port that I must propogate backwards into C and hopefully C++… which should reduce the code considerably.

My next aim will be to design a system myself – hypothetical X) and write an emulator for it. Maybe around 16 instructions or so… depends on how things turn out if and when I actually start work on it.

Regarding Project: Anastasia,

Been busy. And I hate to say it. I am working on other smaller projects and not on my fav. project. Kick me please!

The sourceforge project name “anastasia.sf.net” has been taken over by another company. I was not even given a warning or a single message – their policy / agreement says that – so I'm not going back there soon. I'll host my projects on SDF or other servers.

Anyway, mum's calling – must scram!

Written by hiway

July 25, 2004 at 7:25 pm

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Wrote SmaCKEm

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SmaCKEm – Small Computer Kit – Emulator…

A part of my upcoming project: SmaCK

It is a simplistic 9 instruction emulator, written as a smack to the education system which does not provide students with enough info and documentation – and NO source code!!

No more.

Well, we are expected to write the emulator in the third year of the course – here's mine – one year before I am expected to write it. actually, not really – I flunked, but doesn't that mean I am not worth learning those things as yet? HAHA X) Here's my SmaCK!!

http://data.freeshell.org/projects/smack/

Written by hiway

July 24, 2004 at 12:12 am

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Argh!

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I hate it when I don't write in my blog for a month and then come back to write again – feels like a hole left behind :/

Anyway, again… once again I hope I'll be able to write to my diary/blog more regularly 🙂

Many things happened… the job regarding XML – it's spooky.. they want me to pay them for the job! hell with them. More to come as I find time… right now must rush for the System Programming Class…

Written by hiway

July 22, 2004 at 6:48 am

Posted in Uncategorized