Friday, September 29, 2006

Device Driver For Goatee

That is the title of my final year project. Just started looking into the present state of goaTee. Thanks to the beautifully written docs by our seniors. We started it with just the passion for operating system development driving us into the project. My first experience with the operating system development was with AAOSK - Application adaptive operating system kernel. That was a great oppurtunity for us to get some feel of operating system development. Though our part in AAOSK is very small that gave us the oppurtunity to know about some GNU tools, difficulty in OS development and of course we listened to some beautiful lectures by our seniors. Now i am back with OS development and with greater aims and greater responsiblities. I am still reading the documents and to be more specific still searching for documents that would give some information about the device driver development, but could not get much.

Yesterday we had the zeroth review of the project and it went pretty cool. The questions were easy and the review lasted for about twenty minutes. Now it is time to do some hard work and start the implementation. For those who want to take a look at the presentation that we did for the review it is available here

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

xmms -> gxine -> MPlayer

Successfully installed MPlayer in my GNU/Linux box yesterday. When i first started using GNU/Linux i was using XMMS, then moved to gxine as xmms didnot have support for wma files by default. Now it is time for MPlayer. For those who do not know what MPlayer is, MPlayer is a versatile movie player in GNU/Linux and has support for most of the audio/video formats. I was searching for a command line player in GNU/Linux desparately for the sole purpose of making Emacs play songs. First i was trying to use mpg123 and mpg321. Both experienced some problem with liboss which i did not understand. Some said alsa should be configured for mpg321 to run, but i was not able to do that. So switched to MPlayer. MPlayer installation was not at all difficult and it went fine without any probs. Next task would be to configure Emacs to use MPlayer and to play songs in Emacs. I cant prevent myself from wondering what all can Emacs do. Emacs seems to do everything. Will update soon if i configure emacs to play songs.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Bye to Blogger

Now it is time to bid adieu to Blogger. I have switched from blogger to wordpress. Blogger has remained the same for almost two years and there has not been any change or innovation. Wordpress looks like a cool choice to me. Wordpress has a lot of features when compared to blogger. One more reason is restriction of blogger in college . Anyway i am switching over to wordpress and my wordpress blog is .

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Sillunu Oru Kadhal : Slow Screenplay Spoils everything

SOK the last movie for surya and Jothika before their marriage has not turned out like what they might have expected. The only plus point in the movie is the music by ARR. I saw the movie after FStival along with my friends and Seniors. Surya as usual has done his role perfectly. Boomika and Baby Shreya look cute. Santhanam and Vadivelu dont have much to do. After seeing the movie my interest in SOK songs has decreased a bit. In particular the "Newyork Nagaram" song looked just like a presentation. I was trying to resist the sleep but the movie was trying the other way. In short the storyline was not impressing, screenplay is slower than the snail, Sillune oru kadhal lacks chillness.

Monday, September 18, 2006


September 16th, a big day for the FLOSS guys around the world. When the whole world celebrates it under different names, we celebrate it here in Madurai under the name FStival which means Free Software Festival. FStival is jointly organized by GNU/Linux user group - Madurai and GNU/Linux user group of TCE. It was special to us for two reasons, one it would be the last FStival we organized as students, second due to the presence of most of the seniors or say founders of GLUGOT.

This year FStival was a great success with students from all over Madurai attending the event. The auditorium was packed with a overwhelming crowd of around 350. The chief guest for this year FStival was Mr. Kenneth Gonsalves from NRC - FOSS @ AU-KBC, chennai. Mr. Kenneth, a renowned geek in the FOSS world, gave an inspiring talk on "How FOSS makes you a great programmer". This was followed by the on stage Installation Debian session. Then it was time for XGL to steal the show. With cubes rotating while switching desktops, wobbling windows and menus, XGL looked great.

After all this came the most interesting part, the demo stalls. Thanks to the second year and third year students. They did their job well. They explained about the various tools in GNU/Linux starting from FOSS, Basic commands, Emacs, GCC, GIMP, GTK+ Glade, Games, Live CD & Education tools, Scilab, XGL, Latex, LAMP, Databases, CMS etc. They were also bombarded with a lot many questions from the enthusiastic crowd. It was a tough job indeed, explaining the same thing to more than 300. The CD burning students were kept busy all the time as they continued to receive CDs for burning various distributions. Hats off to all the juniors. The software freedom day ended with the demo stalls closing in the evening. In the mean time Sriram and myself managed to take some snaps of the whole event. Sriram also has a video of XGL demo. We would be publishing them soon in glugot and glug-madurai site.

On sunday it was great to see the software freedom day celebration as a news item in Dinamalar and Dinakaran. Thanks to the press people for spending their valuable time with us.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

FOSS in Syllabus

One more major step towards the development of FOSS in our college. FOSS has become a part of the syllabus for the computer Science students. So computer science students would be having FOSS as compulsory elective in their eigth semester. Anna university has already added FOSS as a subject, and it has happened in our college now. Still there is no clue about the syllabus but anyway it is going to be very very interesting. Looking forward for the FOSS classes in eigth semester.

Yesterday i got the link to my school website . I do not know whether my school had the website when i was studying there. But now it is there. The site looks cool and has been designed using PHP(one of my favourite languages). They also have a separate login for alumni. I registered myself as as alumni there. I am still unable to accept the fact that i am an alumni of the prestigious institution. The memories are still fresh. Those were glorius moments to be forgetted soon. I have not explored the site fully. If you happen to be a alumni of TVSLMHSS and if have not visited it yet. Go to andexplore. You will feel a little nostalgic.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Book exhibition in Madurai

Went to the book exhibition that has been going for the past few weeks in Madurai. Mayoor and myself went to the exhibition. The exhibition has attracted a lot of madurai dwellers and i never expected to see a crowd like that there. Some were not interested in books and were spending their time like in picnic, eating panchumittai and millagai bajji. There were numerous stalls displaying wide varieties of books. Though there were a number of stalls for english and technical books, the number of tamil book stalls out numbered them. Did not look more into the details of the books available there. Most of the them contained biographies, autobiographies and small stories.

The english books were hosted in stalls of famous book stores like Malligai, Turning point, HB etc. These were the stalls that attracted me a lot. When i saw Sidney Sheldon, Jeffrey Archer, John Grisham etc neatly arranged in shelf the lost desire of reading novels like this resurfaced. I remember reading a lot of novels during my school days and the habit slowly died out. The reason my school library was a huge repository of all these books. I would say that it had enough books to fuel the thirst of hungry students. Thats where i started reading Enid Blyton, Hardy boys, Nancy Drew and later switched over Sidney Sheldon, Jeffrey Archer, John Grisham etc. That habit slowly died out once i left the school. Still i would like to visit the school library once again just to see the collection they have.

Coming back to the book fair, i left the stalls with the desire of getting a novel increasing every moment i was waiting there. Managed to collect some tamil books and left the stalls. How we got out of the stalls is an interesting story. The entire place was fully packed and no effort was needed. The crowd kept pushing and we were out after some struggle. The stalls should have been little larger. Other than that is a good place to spend some time.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Hello World

Hello world. This is my first post in wordpress. I was a blogger user till now and recently switched over to wordpress seeing that wordpress has some really good features when compared to blogger. Blogger has not changed a bit and i hate adding an external hit counter and calendar to my blog. What really impressed me in wordpress is the categorization of posts. I dont know whether blogger is great or  wordpress is. I started to lose interest in blogger and i am here blogging in wordpress. Wordpress looks cool to me now. That explains why i am here. To know more about me and about the what u will find here click the 'About' link.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

High Adrenaline Action

My 50th post is going to be something about me and snakes. May prove to be a interesting story also. Since it is sunday i was off for a casual walk near my home with my pet Tommy. About 100 feet from my home i sited a snake about 6 feet long and considerably large in diameter waiting to catch a frog that was in front of it. I did not notice it at first but on seeing me it went inside a large bush near that. A snake that has caught my attention has never managed to live more than 10 minutes. The count of snakes killed by me is already in double digit and i thought of adding one more to it. So i spent the next 10 minutes beating the bush with the intent of bringing the snake out. The bush was a little large to search and there was no sign of the snake but i was sure that it was still there. After about 30 minutes i went to the same spot with a little large and of course with my pet.

Still the frog was there in the same position where i saw it first. I started the same old job, beating the bush with the hope of getting the snake out. At one point i found the snake moving inside the bush and whacked it with my stick. One more Justify Fullblow after that i started hearing hissing sounds. The sounds became strong and i realised the breed of snake. Ofcourse it was KING COBRA. It was there with its body raised to about 2feet and it has streched its hood and is making strong hissing sounds. The hood and hissing sound did wat it was supposed to do. I dont know where half of my courage went once i saw that snake. (summa saadha pambuntu nenachein, anna naaga pambuntu yaaruku theriyum)

An awesome and fearful sight it was. I backed off but my pet kept advancing and started barking. It was just 1 to 2 feet away. I thought it is going to be the last evening for my pet. Somehow managed to collect him and returned home. After tat still went there this time armed with some bricks and stones, still alone. I stayed a little away and threw some stones. But i could not find anything. So i returned home.

Encounters with snake is not something new to me. I started killing snakes right from my 4th standard and had killed all sorts of snakes. I remember killing a snake when i was 11 by stamping with my shoes. But this is the first encounter with cobra and this is the first time i have seen a snake standing against its opponent and this is the first time i felt some fear for a snake. Legends say that if you beat a cobra and dont kill, it remembers and take revenge on you even after years. Lets see. Already this incident has become a hot news for my nieghbours. I am hearing all sorts of stories now. Ok enough of the COBRA story i have CORBA exam tomorrow to study.