Eravikulam National Park, Kerala

The Neelakurunji flower is indeed one of Mother Nature’s most precious creations. It blooms once in a blue moon, 12 years to be specific, but when it does, it takes over every nook and corner of the Eravikulam National Park in Kerala.

Kerala is blessed to have more than 40% of its landscape as mountains and ranges. The boundaries it shares with Karnataka and Tamil Nadu is through the infinitely beautiful Nilgiri ranges, Brahmagiri Mountain Ranges,  Satyamangalam Forest and Bandiur forest. It is part of the beautiful and sensitive western ghats and has number of tiger reserves and national parks.

To the south of Kerala, amidst the the mighty Nilgiri range and on the National Highway 49  is a small town of Munnar. It is a popular hill station with wide spread tea estates across the mountains with  Tata Tea having the monopoly in this region. Few kilometers from this town towards Coimbatore (Tamil Nadu) is the Anamudi Mountain . It is the highest peak in South India at 8841 ft. Its also home to one of the rarest types of national parks perched on top of this mountain.

Anamudi Valley View

Eravikulam National Park was established in the year 1978 at Devikulam Taluk, Idukki District of Kerala. It is spread on an area of 97 Sq.Km. The mean highest point is 2000m above sea level. It has a unique vegetation called Shola Grasslands which are seen at high altitudes.  It is home to some of the rare Flora and fauna which can be seen in the western ghats. Endangered species such as Nilgiri tahr have made their home. The Neelakurunji flower is indeed one of Mother Nature’s most precious creations. It blooms once in a blue moon, 12 years to be specific, but when it does, it takes over every nook and corner of the Eravikulam National Park in Kerala.

Animals on top of the park

Once the base camp is reached, visitors are taken in a mini bus to the peak from which one needs to trek. It gives an opportunity to  have a glimpse of mother nature’s creation at its best. One even encounters animals happily grazing on the lanes. It also gives a spectacular view of the Anamudi mountain and its ranges.

System on Chip

Its being developed in the area as taken by the processors of present times. It can theoretically do the computation of hundreds of processors. It has an element of parallelism in it. Its called as System On Chip.

Gone are the days when  processors were single core or multiple cores based. In the days of high computing requirements, an alternative technology is being developed. Its being developed in the area as taken by the processors of present times. It can theoretically do the computation of  hundreds of processors. It has an element of parallelism in it. Its called as System On Chip.

Each of these SoC’s are made up of 2D mesh network. A module is present at each of the intersections in the mesh. In turn each of these modules consists of a controller which routes the data to be processed . Also modules are the processing unit of the setup. They contain the algorithm of a particular application which is used for analysing the data. Typically a mesh consists of a NxN network of modules.

The data to be processed is initially split up into small bits. They are assigned a module address and using a main buffer, they are  sent across to the network where the modules receive them and analyze .Then they come up with a result. This result is sent across to the main buffer which would reorganize the results. As the number of modules increase, the processing capability of a SoC would also increase.

I’ve been fortunate to have been working on it for past one year where as a team we have been trying to implement it  on an FPGA . Also the designs developed would be tested in next 2 months. With all the efforts we have put in we are hoping for the best 🙂

Analysis – Art of Teaching

Analysis of the art of teaching within the purview of Indian System.

An individual always gets an opportunity in his student days to experience a teacher who has just entered the profession. The reception the teacher gets depends on the age scale of the students.  The younger the students are, the better the teacher is accepted, irrespective of the quality of teaching. As the students get older, there is always a sense of restlessness if the teacher is not upto the mark as expected by the students. If the first few sessions doesn’t go well with the students and a feedback mechanism is absent, the students generally start creating trouble for the want of missing the class.

I happened to experience the same recently. A new lecturer had joined the college and we were all curious to know how she would cope up with our antics and teach a subject at the senior level. It so happened that the 1st day she took the class, she had a very bad beginning. Her body language was provocative by trying to dominate with the word Go. Also the what she took things was very bad. Her threshold levels were very low when it came to silence and she incidentally taught less and scolded more. This hit upon the psychology of the students on how they perceived her and the level of respect they had for the new lecturer. This continued for more than 3-4 sessions and by that time student had started provoking the teacher. There was a drastic shift in the level of respect she was getting.

After 7-8 days she did settle down by increasing her threshold level to the disturbance created by the students and also by concentrating on the content she was teaching. As this improved there was again a considerable shift in the psychology of the student. having seen that their antics is not getting the due attention, students became independent in their approach . Instead of directly provoking her, they were involved in their work without disturbing the class. Thus the level of respect to the lecturer from the students had increased without their knowledge. It was a non violent strategy followed by the lecturer and it did work out . But this created a new challenge of getting the students involved in the content she was teaching in.

Thus for a teacher, getting the respect initially a big challenge compared to any other thing. Once a level of respect is achieved , he/she can weave her web of control and get the students to swing to her tunes. Once this critical point is achieved, a teacher more a step ahead in becoming a successful teacher.

Teaching is a challenging profession. Not all teachers are born to be one. Nevertheless they adopt themselves and try to bring out the best in them.   Its a mystical profession where one can control the thought process of hundreds of young minds leading to a better future for themselves and the generation ahead.

Photos of Old Bangalore

Rare photos of Old Bangalore and its lifestyle.

Welcome back into the past. here are some images of Bangalore, generations old, that are apparantly lost in the pages of history. come, travel with me back in time to the banglore in the days of the raj, when it was still  a small cantonment town. the year was 1946. and the place, namma Bengaluru

Brigade Road

does this frame look familiar??? it should. this is the  BRIGADE ROAD.   The left hand side building is still standing, and housed the Ashok Electricals, the Post Office, now it is the LEE and Luis Phillips showroom. The road hasn't got any bigger, but the traffic and the crowd definitely has.

and here's the SOUTH PARADE road,

M G Road

any guesses what it is called now??
THE M.G. ROAD. yeah. The building you are seeing is the Higginbothams bookstore, which looks dilapidated on the present day.

Old Hosur Road

The above picture is of Hosur Road. the  present day electronics, IT and BPO Hub.

Continue reading “Photos of Old Bangalore”

The Origin of Zero

It first came to be between 400 and 300 B.C. in Babylon, Seife says, before developing in India, wending its way through northern Africa and, in Fibonacci’s hands, crossing into Europe via Italy.

Source : Scientific American

The number zero as we know it arrived in the West circa 1200, most famously delivered by Italian mathematician Fibonacci (aka Leonardo of Pisa), who brought it, along with the rest of the Arabic numerals, back from his travels to north Africa. But the history of zero, both as a concept and a number, stretches far deeper into history—so deep, in fact, that its provenance is difficult to nail down.

“There are at least two discoveries, or inventions, of zero,” says Charles Seife, author of Zero: The Biography of a Dangerous Idea (Viking, 2000). “The one that we got the zero from came from the Fertile Crescent.” It first came to be between 400 and 300 B.C. in Babylon, Seife says, before developing in India, wending its way through northern Africa and, in Fibonacci’s hands, crossing into Europe via Italy.

Initially, zero functioned as a mere placeholder—a way to tell 1 from 10 from 100, to give an example using Arabic numerals. “That’s not a full zero,” Seife says. “A full zero is a number on its own; it’s the average of –1 and 1.”

It began to take shape as a number, rather than a punctuation mark between numbers, in India in the fifth century A.D., says Robert Kaplan, author of The Nothing That Is: A Natural History of Zero (Oxford University Press, 2000). “It isn’t until then, and not even fully then, that zero gets full citizenship in the republic of numbers,” Kaplan says. Some cultures were slow to accept the idea of zero, which for many carried darkly magical connotations.

The second appearance of zero occurred independently in the New World, in Mayan culture, likely in the first few centuries A.D. “That, I suppose, is the most striking example of the zero being devised wholly from scratch,” Kaplan says.

Kaplan pinpoints an even earlier emergence of a placeholder zero, a pair of angled wedges used by the Sumerians to denote an empty number column some 4,000 to 5,000 years ago.




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But Seife is not certain that even a placeholder zero was in use so early in history. “I’m not entirely convinced,” he says, “but it just shows it’s not a clear-cut answer.” He notes that the history of zero is too nebulous to clearly identify a lone progenitor. “In all the references I’ve read, there’s always kind of an assumption that zero is already there,” Seife says. “They’re delving into it a little bit and maybe explaining the properties of this number, but they never claim to say, ‘This is a concept that I’m bringing forth.'”

Kaplan’s exploration of zero’s genesis turned up a similarly blurred web of discovery and improvement. “I think there’s no question that one can’t claim it had a single origin,” Kaplan says. “Wherever you’re going to get placeholder notation, it’s inevitable that you’re going to need some way to denote absence of a number.”