Tuesday, July 29, 2008

India blasts ...

I was talking to Kalyan the other day and the news of bombing at Bangalore and Ahmedabad came up. He commented that given the security and intelligence scenario in India, number of terrorist attacks are unbelievably less. Well, he was true in some sense. Security measures are never adequate in India. Our security agencies have so many problems to attend - so many politicians to cover, so many terrorist groups to look out for, so many Maoists to take care of, and so on. And believe me, everyone of them, politician, terrorists, Maoists - everyone has a "motive" to "blast" a city! There can be plenty of motives for someone to kill a person; money, jealousy, love, power, authority, or insanity. But what can be motives of bombing randomly in a city? Well, sometime to create a riot, or to prove how powerful they are, or to send a message to the bourgeois Government about the oppression of unprivileged. And we have too many messages to send to appropriate authorities. Apparently the best way to get attention is by killing innocent bystanders.
The sad thing is that just after the massacre, the city goes back to normal state in a jiffy; within a day or two, entire nation except the suffered family forgets something bad happened. We don't really care about anything till it happens to us. And we even play with this sentiment. Last night someone sent a hoax mail to some TV channels stating Kolkata is going to be blown away at several places. By the way, even if we think our security agencies incapable, they did save Surat by diffusing a number of bombs.
Its all so confusing and saddening ... I forgot what I wanted to write ...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Rain rain go away ...

It was drizzling thoughout the day just like back in India ...

Friday, July 18, 2008


If you are somewhere in between into serious amateur photography, you probably heard about the community of photographers at photo.net. They recently had a survey on their members their members. There is nothing exceptional about the statistics. Considering the fact that this is a community of mainly serious-amateur to pro photographers, the results are kind of expected.
Ladies are in general more confident in posing in front of the lens than going behind it. That commemorates with the fact that male human beings are more sensitive to visual pleasures. And probably at the begining of second half of life most of us become little lost and then try to hold on to old hobbies. That may explain the high number of middle-aged photographers. (I don't think they have to spent half of their lifetime to get into the stage of serious amateur). The fact that Canon is the front-runner in camera brand is not surprising as they were the early birds in dishing out cost-effective semi-pro DSLRs. As expected, Nikon is also at the same level. But surprisingly Pentax has a staggeringly low share, even if they are supposedly at the same level, if not better, in the film camera sector (which is still almost half of the entire photo sector). Interestingly even in the community of serious amateurs the point-and-shoot digital cameras are edging out the film SLRs. Indeed immediate feedback and virtually no recurring cost are two of the major factors that turn one into a serious amateur from a casual photographer.

Photo.net Survey Reults

Photo.net members are: 87% Male 13% Female

-By age:
17 or under: 1%
18-24: 5%
25-34: 18%
35-44: 23%
45-54: 32%
55-64: 15%
65 or over: 6%

-20% are professional photographers in some fashion, 66% are serious amateurs, and 14% say they are "just getting started in photography."

-Cameras used:
Digital SLR camera: 84%
35 mm film camera: 44%
Point-and-shoot digital camera: 41%
Camera phone: 1%
Medium format camera: 19%
Large format camera: 5%
Rangefinder: 12%
Other: 4%

-Brands used:
Canon: 50%
Fuji: 7%
Kodak: 4%
Leica: 6%
Nikon: 42%
Olympus: 12%
Panasonic: 4%
Pentax: 12%
Sony: 9%
Other: 31%

-Lenses and memory cards were the most common items purchased in the previous 12 months and were also the most likely to be purchased in the following 12 months.

-Many different computer applications were used for digital adjustment of images, but Photoshop and Photoshop Elements was the most common by a significant margin.

Courtesy - Photo.net

Having said all these, I love my Vivitar because it has a Pentax K mount and K mount is amazingly backword compatible making it easy to find damn cheap used good manual lenses on ebay!

Friday, July 04, 2008

Wandering off

This movie can spin off a movie like "The Guy Who Kills His Fathers"! Its like a FPS video game with a fake story line. Assuming people want to see things they fantasize about in movies and considering that this is a hit, why people love killing others? So much of violence, mindless violence. Video game-ish. I wonder why did I ever go to watch this 'Fruit of the Loom' (credits Benny) movie. I wish I hadn't 'Wanted' it. Violence reminds me, they say Japan had a very high rate of youth violence. Its decreasing now. But still there are urban camouflages being sold in Japan (by the way, read the comments here, funny and thought provoking). And that piece of news is picked by NYT in such a manner that it seems a regular trend in Japan. This is not just a stray case of filthy reporting. Take look here. I used to think that only our Bengali regional newspaper spins story of a mountain out of a mole as they used to write things like how last night's kabab affected Ganguly's play today! But making a story seems to be a universal reporting trend. Well why not? After all with so many companies in news business and so much of competition, news makers are really in demand. And for no reason that reminds me an old chinses verse ...
Most men, bringing up sons, wish for them intellect;
But I by my intellect have had a life-time of fauilure.
I would only desire that my child should be simple and dull,
That with no ill-fortune and no troubles he may attain to highest office.
The Washing of the Infant - Su Shih
Trans. by Robert Kotewall and Norman L. Smith

Have you ever stopped and wandered?

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

The Fisher King in me

Half of the year passed by.
I planned to do so many things ... Nothing has been achieved yet, nothing has been seeded. A sense of getting old and incapable of creating anything new grows day by day. The days pass by doing mundane works. All quiet on all fronts. No new light, no new shine, no new hope.
Is it summer that makes me sad? Its summer with occasional surprising rain, reminds me
"Summer surprised us, coming over the Starnbergersee
With a shower of rain; we stopped in the colonnade,
And went on in sunlight, into the Hofgarten,
And drank coffee, and talked for an hour." ...
Am I like the Fisher King in his Waste Land - impotent yet hopeful of contributing and proudly protecting futile legends?