Thursday, December 24, 2009

Unsharp Mask !!

The command in photoshop to sharpen an image is called "unsharp mask" - interesting name for a command - I had to google and find what it meant...pretty interesting history behind it too...

In the "old" days, to sharpen a film image, during developing, they used to first faintly expose another negative with the same image, but a bit blurred (the end result of which is a faint positive
!!). This blurred negative carrying the faint positive was called the unsharp mask. Then a combination of the unsharp mask and the original negative was used to develop the final print. This appeared sharper to the eye than the original print.

Today's software uses the same logic behind the scenes, creating the mask and applying it over the image....and hence the name !!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Top Story of the Decade

Interesting top story of the decade - not sure which show it was on radio - my best guess is "the giant show" on project 961 radio atlanta...

They were counting down the top 10 stories of the decade (2000-9), and 9-11 came in No.2

what was #1 ? It was america's obsession with celebrities - and with good reason...

People are more interested in knowing what britney did to her hair, or how anna nicole or MJ died, or the girls that tiger had....than knowing what evidence did america have to go to iraq or what caused the subprime crisis....or even where bin laden is....

This interest drives the news channels to have almost 24/7 coverage of the latest celebrity buzz....and that is just perfect for the government and long as celebrities keep dying or screwing up...they can do whatever they want....

so this obsession deserves to be the top..not 9-11...not anything else....


This has nothing to do with the "drinkability" of beer - which to me means how close has the brewing process got the end result (beer?) to taste like the water they started out with.

This is about the "holdability" of a magazine. Can I fold it and hold it and read it the way I want? If yes, I do end up reading more of it for sure. All those thick glossy ad pages, half page thick inserts ads, all reduce my holdability. So what do I do when I come across a mag with these? Tear all those pages out and make it more holdable.

Don't know how many others do the same, but if you are an advertiser planning on a thick glossy page, you have a better "chance" of getting these eyeballs if that ad is on a normal page....

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Thursday, December 3, 2009

French menu

If the americans were to follow the example of the french, and start listing food as it is on the menu, maybe people will eat less of their favorite meal. It will probably be listed on the menu as

Enormous greasy grilled beef patty with lettuce, tomato, pickle, smothered in mayonnaise, served in a refined flour bun, deep fried sliced potatoes dunked in salt, and a gargantuan glass of artificially flavored sugary carbonated water.

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Friday, November 27, 2009

handwriting of mine...

tried out some "light art" - my handwriting's never been good. I still count the keyboard as the biggest benefit that computers brought into our world... internet may be a close second...dont know how many of my schoolmates still remember me being asked to read out the history essay i had written for mid terms before the whole class, coz sister christi could not read it, and then me getting thrown out of the class, coz i also couldn't read it....

happy thanksgiving....this is definitely how a holiday should be - 2 days....a day to sit and stuff yourself and another to go out and shop....followed by a weekend to recover !!

went light on the food this the smallest cornish hen i could find, spiced it up in some homemade chicken 65 masala and baked it... :)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

healthy sweet potatoes

a colleague recently switched his "side dish" from the usual mashed potatoes to baked sweet potatoes for "health" reasons...good choice, i thought...

....until i saw him get the sweet potato once - it was split open, filled with butter, and brown sugar, and loaded with marshmallows....still a very yummy choice..i thought...

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Spoonfeeding the Copy King

Deep purple released the song "child in time" in 1970
see video here

After 25 years, they tour Mumbai and Delhi in 1995

and in 1995, the movie akele hum akele tum comes out....

with the song "aisa zakm diya hai" ( see video here ) which was meant to be aamir's own composition as per movie storyline....

The trouble one has to go through to get a copy made by the master - anu malik is too big a shot to just buy and listen to your CD - you have to travel to mumbai and give him a live performance !!!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Lighter beer

Beers get lighter and end up with stuff like MGD 64 that claims 64 calories. But alcohol = calories, so how much is 64 calories worth of alcohol? Thats around 2.8%

So choice is yours...have a nice full tasting beer with about 130 calories and of course 5-6% alcohol...or have two of those ultralight beers...

Of course if your argument is drinkability....why not go for some nice iced water...nothing more drinkable than that....well...maybe a nice full tasting beer drinkability curve is certainly an inverted bell....

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

how the mind works?!

excerpts from a conversation - guess i don't even have to mention the sex of the speaker...

"..i dont like him,
but looks like he likes me a lot
thats why i like him..."

"..i dont like him
but when i look at him i think of his mom
i like his mom a lot
thats why i like him.."


continuing with the subtitles series here

was watching DHOOM the other day and the first song goes
dilbar shik-dum shik-dum....

and what do the english subtitles do?
they go:
sweetheart shik-dum shik-dum...

Saturday, September 5, 2009


once every few years, this loops in my head...

Invictus by William Ernest Henley

OUT of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


More "overheard at the airport":

Kid: grandma, what kind of laptop did you have when you were a kid?
Grandma: I did not have one sweety
Kid: why?
Grandma: well, we did not even have a television
Kid: why? Were you poor?

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Friday, August 7, 2009

before <> after

It has got to a point where it does not have to be the same person in the before / after pics !!??

Friday, July 31, 2009

green canada?

Worked for a week recently at a customer's office in Canada. Just amazed at how different the level of "environmental" awareness over here is as opposed to the US.

It was (and maybe still is in many places outside some cities) a struggle discussing global warming or many similar topics in the US - the most common response you may get is "oh...bull***t, you falling for that crap?" or "you joined the tree huggers now?"

And across the border? well, recycle containers everywhere and folks who know where to put what. If they dont find a recycle bin, they still leave the bottles etc. outside the trash! Found a hotel in vancouver that was actually trying to be "zero waste" - not the "hey if u care about the environment, why dont you use your towel another day?" sounding messages am used to....

in the office, they have actual cups for coffee and water. everyone picks one at the start of the day, uses it, washes and re-uses, and puts it in the dishwasher at the end of the day !! even for a moderate coffee drinker, i would have run through 5-10 plastic cups in a day for water and coffee!

and many stores charge for plastic bags like in europe - really cuts down on their use :)

liked all that - just one crib - nobody takes credit cards - its debit everywhere...definitely good...just more trouble for me...

Friday, July 17, 2009

stay thirsty my friends

this chuck norris inspired ad series is getting really good

people hang on to his word, even the prepositions

he once had an awkward moment, just to see how it feels

his organ donation card also lists his beard

he is - the most interesting man in the world

"see those nuts, they are there to make us thirsty
while i dont like being coerced, in this case, i will make an exception"

"fellows, leave the tight pants to the ladies.
if i can count the coins in your pockets, you better use them to call your tailor"

"its never too early to start beefing up your obituary"

"i dont always drink beer, but when i do, i prefer dos equis"

"stay thirsty my friends"

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Memory Test

Based on a true incident:

A long long time ago, in a small town, there was a small middle school. And the small middle school used to have an annual arts / sports / etc. festival...

One of the events was a memory go to a room where some objects are kept, you have a few seconds to see everything, then you go back and write down the names of everything you saw on a piece of paper...and the kid with the most correct entries won..

simple? yes.

But what intrigued many kids was the fact that every year, the same girl came first, and she was - well, to put it nicely - not the brightest bulb on the Christmas tree.

The mystery was finally solved - and by none other than the girl who came second every year!

The small town had a small general store...and all the school purchases came from there...including the items for the memory test...and who owned the shop? our winner's dad...and that was how that cookie crumbled...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Saving Electricity !

There is a nice campaign running on mayalayam chanels where movie stars urge folks not to use high consumption items like iron during peak hours (evening 6-9). Also to turn off the refrigerator during the same time "dont worry, your food will remain fresh". 

It is also timed very well. So usually around 6 pm, when you turn on the tv, you will find mohanlal or suresh gopi on screen asking you to switch off the refrigerator. 

(they definitely would not dare ask you to switch off the tv !! )

An interesting fallout of this is whats been happening at my home in trivandrum - and am guessing at many other homes. At 6 pm, my dad - on que from Mohanlal - jumps up and switches off the refrigerator. But then, at 9 pm, there are no faces popping up on the tv to remind him to turn it back on!!!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Colonoscopy's Image

saw an article somewhere recently titled "overcoming colonoscopy's image problem". I am not sure if that is what CBS intends to do with their "colonoscopy sweepstakes"!!

and whats on offer? - a luxury hotel room stay the night before your colonoscopy!! 

Is that gonna make the poor guy's night any better? Is he going to enjoy his stay dreaming about his colonoscopy the next day??

I would say, put him in some high security prison for a least he'll dream fondly about getting out the next day for his colonoscopy!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Colorless 65

This is gonna be one odd post, but this one's gotten so good n simple, have to share :) Started out with chickn 65 mixes, now cut down to bare essentials - apologies in advance to my vegetarian friends....

6 chicken legs – remove skin, make some cuts into meat with a knife for marinade to get in

Mix up the following into a paste using 2 tablespoons of whatever cooking oil you use. 
1 tsp red chili powder
1 tsp black pepper powder
1 tsp ginger paste
1 tsp garlic paste
1/2 lime juice
1 tsp salt

Coat the chicken, and leave it overnight in the refrigerator. Then broil it at 500 for 15 mins one side, 15 mins other side, and 5 mins again 1st side – basically till its just about to burn that’s pretty well done, you can grill or broil or bake (for the health conscious) or fry - up to your taste...

and of course...enjoy with your fav drink..designate a driver....blah blah.....

Friday, February 20, 2009

Honeymoon Package

I was not searching for one, but this one is interesting...(click on image to view large format)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Biggest loser

who is the biggest loser on Biggest Loser? 

The guy who lost the most?


The guy who lost the least??