Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Incredible India -- The story of Warangal

Old is gold people say,it perfectly made sense to me when I set out on a one day trip to explore my native city, Warangal.It was planned after having extensive discussions with my team mates at my organization.This time though it was a new experience for me all together since I was their guide.We started with an early morning departure from Hyderabad at 5.30 AM in the morning.Since we had to visit and explore many places in a day's time ,it was prudent to set out before sunrise.

Two hours after travelling by road we reached Warangal. The weather had by then turned a bit warm and balmy(considering the high temperatures here,this was a pleasant surprise as well).This was also a very good chance for me to explain to them the historic significance of this ancient city and its prominence in India's History.

Our first stop was was thousand Pillared temple,located in the center of the city.1100 Years ago Warangal was no small town but was rather the thriving capital of the powerful Kakatiya Dynasty.Their kingdom and power extended to most of southern India through the 11th and 12th Century A.D.The temple we visited is an architectural marvel of sorts.Not only because of its name but it is one of the few monolithic structures to be built entirely from a single rock formation.The intricate carvings and the sculptures within the walls of the temple justify its significance.
[caption id="attachment_898" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The magestic thousand pillared temple at Hanamkonda,Warangal "][/caption]

As in the case of other ancient cities around the world,Building temples must have been one of the many power plays which rulers would do in order to maintain and extend their cultural dominance and leave back a legacy.That legacy continues down the line in one form or another and becomes a part of everyone within the society
[caption id="attachment_900" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Main ceiling inside the temple "][/caption]

The sculptures themselves explain the rich architecture and cultural heritage brought by the kings.Would modern day architects ever think of designing such a structure which could signify our race?.I doubt it!The temple has gone through many Invasions by Islamic rulers and has stood well through the tests of time.

Next stop on the list was Ramappa temple,built in 1213 A.D by the same rulers in early years of 13th century A.D.There is specialty in the material used with this structure as well,The bricks used to build the temple can actually float on water!Partly damaged by an earthquake,it still stands majestically with its long spire going towards the heavens
[caption id="attachment_907" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Skyscrapers of Ancient India "][/caption]

There is no dearth of richness here as well.I was amazed to know that escape tunnels existed underground in those days which ran for 70kms between these two temples,in case the kings had to escape from an enemy invasion.The walls are filled with carvings explaining the various Hindu Mythologies and beliefs.Sacred texts being displayed in the form of carvings and art.I was also happy to see that both of them are now undergoing restoration under the auspices of The Archeological Survey of India.With the possible inclusion in the Unesco's World Heritage Site list on cards,this will certainly expose their presence among my fellow countrymen and the rest of the world

[caption id="attachment_911" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Simply Splendorous "][/caption]

Our day ended with a visit to a picturesque lake in a small tribal village called laknewaram.Situated inside a beautiful valley,and covered with thick forest on all the sides,it was sheer delight which filled us while we came there.The famous cantilever bridge which stands in between the various islands among the lake is the major attraction as it was built by the local tribal men.It has became so famous now that even the BBC has made a special mention of it in its prime time programs.
[caption id="attachment_913" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Nature at it's best "][/caption]
[caption id="attachment_915" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="The famous cantilever bridge built by tribesmen "][/caption]

Some times I wonder how could our ancestors complete such wonderful projects with rudimentary tools and man power.There was also a sense of pride within me as well,not because I was the guide for the trip but due to the fact that I was born and brought up in such a historic city which has a story dating back to 1100 years....Indeed Old is gold....

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Those were the days....

Sometimes I feel my childhood and college memories are very intriguing as it would be in any one's case. Why would we would think about them only when we are in trouble? Wouldn’t it be nice if ended the circle of life as a child once again? Partly as in the case of Bejamin Button (Impossible it is, but thinking of our childhood days at times brings some solace to our minds)
Some of those memories which I remember till now and some as told by my mother in a blur…

When I used to pour down the whole lot of milk into the plants in my home (Waaah never knew I did that!)
Sitting under the dining table and chitchatting with my twin brother
Taking turns to ride the tricycle and sometimes fight for it

Staying awake through the night while travelling to Banaglore by train, and sky gazing
Getting those Nintendo video games for a rent of 50 Rs a day and playing them till we got exhausted
Going to my friend’s place near by and playing cricket in the weekends and holidays
Reading Tinkle comics and holiday special magazines which my father used to bring during every summer
Getting up early then my brother so that I could finish off reading the paper before him
Watching The Night Rider on Doordarshan every week without fail
Sneaking up the terrace to eat that ever tasty Horlicks without the knowledge of my mother
Learning BASIC and LOGO during morning hours and playing Arkanoid and Mario during the lunch breaks in the school
Reading Harrypotter books for 32 hours at a streach without giving a break to complete them
Staying all night to learn how restore cd’s actually work on my Compaq PC

Visiting the Pakal Lake near my college during my bachelors and enjoying the nature

Gobbling everything about technology from the computer magazines at the college library
Sitting with my best friend Rajkumar and observing on how he used to write complex algorithms and C++ code on my Compaq system every Saturday
With my Best Friend Rajkumar...

And finally starting a project of penning my school memories with some collaboration from my school friends!

Many more which I vaguely remember,It feels good to cherish about what could remember…..If almighty would give me a chance I want back those days!!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

The Ideapad Y560 Give Away Contest -- Winner Announcement

Hear one Hear all!! The ultimate contest to test the 'Fun Quotient' of tech enthusiasts is here!

A Lenovo Ideapad Y560 is up for grabs. All you need to do is share with us is why you think the IdeaPad Y560 is your idea of fun and we will give you a chance to make it yours!

About the first prize-
The Lenovo IdeaPad Y560 promises an immersive multimedia experience. Here are some specs about it:

CPU : Intel Core I7 Quad Core Processor

Graphics : ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5730 with 1GB of dedicated graphics memory

Hard Disk : 500 GB which includes Lenovo's Rapid Drive Technology for that really fast Boot times!

Memory : 4GB DDR3 running at 1333MHZ

Operating system :Windows 7 Home Premium 64Bits

Also Included with the system : Veriface Recognition technology which allows you to use your face to log into the system, Lenovo's One Key Recovery which provides easier Backup and Recovery Options and JBL speakers which come with Dolby Home Theater 2.0 Certification

How to Participate?

Step 1: Read through my review on the Lenovo IdeaPad Y560 to understand the power packed performance features of the laptop

Step 2: Complete the caption and submit it as a 'comment' for the blog post-

"The Lenovo Ideapad Y560 is my idea of fun because.................................... "

The most innovative answer wins!

Contest Duration : The contest will Run for a Week starting from Today untill 20th January 2011.The winners will be announced on 21st January 2011

Terms and Conditions:
a) Your captions have to posted in the comment section after the post in my blog.
b) This contest is open to residents of India only.
c) Relatives of Vijay Samavedam ,employees of Lenovo are not allowed to enter the contest

d) Judges for the contest are- Vijay Samavedam and Lenovo India.

e) The judge’s decision is final, no correspondence will be entered into.

And the Winner Is Chiranjeevulu K !!! Congratulations!!!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Chromium OS - First Hand Experience

Ive been using the Chromium OS for quite some time now since Google released the second major version in the chromium project.It has been a different experience while compared to the conventional Operating systems we have these days.With its usage centered around the connectivity to the cloud any first time user will feel like using the chrome browser!

As with the chrome browser,the chromium OS incorporates three major elements.Its Simple,Sleek and Speedy.I was not sure if this image would ever run on the systems I have.So first I started with the Virtual Disk images from hexxeh. Unfortunately even with Hardware assisted Virtualization enabled ,the OS did not even boot in the VM.I took the conventional way of downloading the image file and writing it to a thumb drive

The second process should not be a big deal to people who are used to using Linux from their Thumb drives.All you need is a image writing utility like Image writer .I also had to think on what kind of system this build would work on.I tried it on my 3000H desktop and an Ideapad Y560 the boot screen would just freeze.Then I popped in the thumb drive into a Thinkpad X200 tablet PC, and it worked!

Since the chromium OS is an opensource project unlike the Google Chrome OS,there are many nightly builds available online. I choose the one which was compiled by hexxeh.I could have tried to compile my own but it would probably take loads of time!.This build is called "flow" and its working pretty well on the thinkpad I have.There is no guarantee that the image would work on your system,perhaps luck should play in as well :).
The boot time is almost under a minute and if in case your are using an SSD it might be even faster.It would also depend n how fast the thumdrive can process the data. Just under ten seconds you are presented with the login screen.

The UI experience was somewhat similar to the MeeGo OS which I used on a S10-2 netbook some time back.Since most of us are used to using the Chrome browser it would make no difference in using the OS.Except that there is nothing more other than tabbed browsing here.For Linux geeks there is the terminal of course who would want to delve into the command line and start tinkering with the system itself!

For what is worth is the security system that Google is touting on,Sandbox mechanisms and Code verification during boot time (The second one is already present in Windows Vista and its successor.There might be more but expect them to be present only on Google's version of the OS and not chromium.Some more screenshots which give us an idea about its UI :

One thing which I found interesting was window overview shortcut.Press F12 and you will get a linear stack of browser windows opened side by side.Particularly helpful if you are running multiple instances of the browser in a same session

There are a number of shortcuts which will invoke useful information about memory usage and the running processes.70% of the shortcut keys designed for the CR-48 machine worked on the Thinkpad X200.In my case even the Wifi got detected an Icing on the cake for sure!The easiest function though is to shut down the system,just hold the power button for 2 or 3 seconds and close the Lid it gets the job done. Some more functions like sleep and power saving mode also worked perfectly on the Thinkpad. And also since Google is a staunch supporter of Net Neutrality your data might be quite safe (Depending on the country you live in ;) who knows Big brother might be watching everything!:D)

Jokes apart,We are entering an age where customers will no longer expect hourly installation procedures and lengthy device driver configuration mechanisms. What they would look for is an instant setup which can be used right out of the box and which provides connectivity between the devices and the Cloud

After using this build my interest has increased and naturally Ive applied for testing the CR-48 machine from Google.So I am Keeping my fingers crossed!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

2010 in review

The stats helper monkeys at mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here's a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 5,000 times in 2010. That's about 12 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 34 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 58 posts. There were 232 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 47mb. That's about 4 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was December 1st with 90 views. The most popular post that day was Packing a Punch-The Lenovo Ideapad Y560.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were,,,, and

Some visitors came searching, mostly for mayabazar, incredible india campaign, meego, zoozoo, and incredible india.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.


Packing a Punch-The Lenovo Ideapad Y560 November 2010


Intel MeeGo on  Ideapad S10-2 June 2010


Ubuntu 10.04 on S10-2 May 2010


You Know You Grew Up in India in the 90s When… May 2010


Brilliant Ads....A picture is worth a thousand words! February 2010
1 comment