Were you thinking of copying that software?

Screencap Well, this little video was designed back in the old days to convince you that piracy is bad. Unfortunately, we don’t all have conscientious girls preventing us from falling into the trap of copying that piece of software to play it on the computer that’s right next to you. Too bad. Too bad. We could all have been such nice people. But take heart, no one is so entrenched in shadow that they can’t be brought into the light.

So anyway, this video involves a really ridiculous rap song with this funny looking guy doing a funny dance. It’s full of slap-your-forehead moments and perfect for people with weird senses of humour (read: chetan).

There is, however, that enlightening moment at the end that tells you something very important. When you put your floppy in it’ll automagically identify what you need copied. Then it will eject when you press a single button on the keyboard.

The best part of the video is the button-mashing that passes for playing a game. Perhaps Mr. Developer dude should have made a game with real gameplay, eh?

Public transport in Chennai Part I : Coordination between different modes

Using public transport in Chennai is one heck of an experience. There are hundreds of little annoyances and some big annoyances. One of the big annoyances is what’s got me so irritated that I actually swore to blog about it.

Guindy is a rather crowded place, and traffic there is bad nearly all the time. It’s also some kind of a hub for travel to different places. You can get from nearly anywhere to Guindy without switching buses. The Guindy train station is also one of the few places the Fast EMUs stop at on their Beach-Tambaram and back trip. Though I don’t have statistics for this, I’d bet my last paisa that it is the station that handles the most commuters that isn’t a terminus.

With all this behind it, Guindy should be fired up to be a perfect model of how to efficiently manage and coordinate traffic and commuters, but no. That is not what it is.
Welcome to the Public Transport Corporation of Chennai, a devious corporation whose only purpose is to make dedicated, hard-working students late and give sadistic pleasure to policemen manning the stretch to ensure you get as far from your destination as possible.

Stop locations:

The bus stops are designed to be as far as possible from the corresponding to the rail station without ending up closer to the next rain station. Today, for example, my bus stopped 500-600 metres from the train station. At 2 m/s that’s a 5 minute walk from the bus stop to the train station, and that’s a pleasant pace.

To top it off, there’s a large piece of land there that serves no purpose other than to be covered by garbage that’s about 2 bus lengths long and 6 bus widths wide (with 2 foot spacing in between).

The Path:

The walk from the bus stop to the train station is anything but nice, pleasant pace or no. The pavement exists in places, though it appears like it’s the stack of fallen-down buildings from the set of some post-apocalypse movie of the 90s. Also, in Chennai, you do not walk onto a pavement, you climb onto them, and in parts the pavement is a foot and a half above the road. Of course, that’s quite pointless because you either step down two steps later or walk into a hole leading to the sewer system. So you walk on the road most of the time, impeded by moving vehicles.

The Timings:

The timings? Oh wait, what timings? The buses run at random times. Why even bother with this section?

So that’s what’s wrong with the whole thing. And the worst part is, it could actually be a nicely running place given the motivation.

Review: Inside Man

Very few movies are really interesting these days, and watching rehashed action/thriller flicks is not a nice way to spend a quiet night. Fortunately, Inside Man is clever enough to warrant categorising as entertainment.

Rating: 8.5 out of 10
Inside Man, screencap
The movie’s about a bank robber’s (Clive Owen as Dalton Russell) heist which doesn’t seem to go exactly as planned and leads to him having to take hostages. The robber leads the detective (Denzel Washington – Keith Frazier) around seemingly in circles, while keeping up his demands for a plane and a clean getaway. The robbing gang are dressed in the same clothes and masks that they force on each of the hostages, complicating the situation even more. At this point is where the real fun begins.

The movie is a nice tight thriller and it has lots of little touches and street philosophy which keep it going even when the camera’s not on the criminal inside the bank. There’s lots of humour, and that keeps the characters real. It’s full of “oh, so that’s how they’re going to do it” moments at various parts which quickly progresses to a “wow, that’s clever” routine.

The two main characters are nicely set up to confront each other and the movie is really not over until nearly at the end. Each of them is intelligent and has a certain sense of honour (which they both deny), good enough to make this a nearly equally pitched battle, into which you throw in the negotiation vs. force factions and the corruption in higher administration and you have a good solid show.

There’s not much blood, gore and explosions here for the action movie fan, but just wanting to know how things turn out kept me glued to it. A clever little movie with some gems of moments in there, but you don’t want to be watching this with your little brother unless you want to have to explain what x swearword is or what y part of the body is.

Anyway, a nice little quote that’s just plain hilarious:
(Frazier walks into a restaurant )
Guy who works there: Can I take your hat, sir?
Frazier: No, get your own.