Archive for March, 2009

Many Happy Returns World Wide Web

I THINK there is a big celebration at CERN this month. If you visit the website of CERN http://public.web.cern.ch/public/ the first topic you would find is “World Wide Web @ 20”
Well … It was 20 years ago this month that Tim Berners-Lee and others  at the  European Laboratory for Particle Physics, more popularly known as CERN, proposed a new protocol for information distribution. This protocol, which became the World Wide Web in 1991, was based on hypertext – a system of embedding links in text to link to other text, while reading these pages.
Take a look at the picture here, In March 1989, Tim Berners-Lee submitted a paper called “Information Management: a Proposal” to his supervisor Mike Sendall. This document, called “vague, but exciting” by Sendall, became the blueprint for the World Wide Web which launched the following year. credit:CERN

www1

www21

The document that officially put the World Wide Web into the public domain on April 30, 1993. credit: CERN

Prior to the Web, If you look at an anecdotal history of the people and communities that brought about the internet, it was a result of some visionary thinking by people in the early 1960’s. J.C.R. Licklider of MIT wanted to share information on research and development in scientific and military fields. So he first proposed a global network of computers and moved over to Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency(DARPA) to develop it. I wouldn’t dwell much into the evolution of internet but there was a lot of hoopla that “Did Al Gore invent the Internet?
I never knew this fact. But i stumbled on this acknowledgment in a paper titled “Al Gore and the Internet” http://www.eecs.umich.edu/~fessler/misc/funny/gore,net.txt that Al Gore has probably done more than any other elected official to support the growth and development of the Internet from the 1970’s to the present .

I never thought history of evolution of Internet and Web would be so interesting to read and when you look at these eventful photos it all together gives you a different high. Finally Many Happy Returns World Wide Web!!!

March 18, 2009 at 6:11 am 1 comment

process-thread-model

I had to overcome with acute nostalgia as i write this blog . I couldn’t resist myself penning some of my hilarious moments of  yesteryears at the company.

It was just over a couple of months that i had joined as a new recruit, a fresher in an MNC. This was a transitional phase for me from juvenile student world to a more responsible, money and business centric corporate world. aha! … everything you see and do at office was new, starting from the Macintosh Imac computer that i was using(which i had never seen i my entire life) to the all new cubicle i had to sit. It was truly an amazing experience with sense of achievement in the air all the time.

my iMac

I was the youngest in terms of age in the team with no prior work experience. So my manager designated one of my colleague, who was actually the best in the business, be it technical or management, to mentor me. Well …  he was actually  (tor)mentor to me . Under his guidance i went on to understand Unix Operating System and its Internals. During this training there was one particular topic which i have to mention was to learn about UNIX Processes and Threads.  The OS definition of Process — is an instance of a program under execution which is competing for a resource in the Operating System.  I read and wrote some tutorial programs  just to get some hands on.

That afternoon i was going for lunch when i saw a good looking female (with all due respect) walk past me with her male colleagues. She was in the center with others walking on the either sides of her. I stared at them for a moment and observed that all her male counterparts were trying to talk with her and never among themselves( I know that’s obvious ). Then suddenly a real weird idea stuck my head. They formed what i call the “PROCESS-THREAD MODEL”. I had read in some book that processes are just like human beings and they generate one or more  child process and threads and i was imagining this line as i saw process and its threads in perfect sync LIVE. For me the lady was like  a process which had spawned 5 threads. Conceptually, threads exists with in a Process and in Unix world you create a thread with this system call
pthread_create(&thread_id, NULL, &talk_to_process, NULL);
all threads are identified by their thread ID’s and upon creation of thread they execute thread function talk_to_process.

As days passed by there was instances when the lady stopped talking to few of her colleagues. So i thought probably  the thread behaved in an undefined  manner so she (process) might have terminated the thread by passing it’s thread ID to 🙂
pthread_kill(pthread_t thread, int sig);

To create a new process fork() system call is used. The process that invokes a fork() will be the parent, while the new process is the child.  Again conforming to my PROCESS-THREAD MODEL a few months later she forked() and gave birth to a child process.  Isn’t it amazing to see how Unix  is so close to our human lives .Hopefully my (tor)mentor would be pleased if i say that i never forgot this concept after this. Last but no the least heaps of thanks to our lady … “SHE PROCESS”.

— Go Green, Save a Tree —

March 13, 2009 at 6:59 am 1 comment

Making Money

UB City

I ended my previous post with the word Hobby. Co-incidentally some events happened which made me re-think about the meaning of this word. Just for the record – “An activity done regularly in one’s leisure time for pleasure” is what the dictionary will define it. Why am i writing this, read on…

It was lunch time. A normal buzz filled the air in our small office cafeteria. While having lunch with my colleagues we spoke about the UB City where we had been to as a team outing. UB City is a state of the art shopping mall with international brands like Louis Vuitton, Omega, and Apple iStore to name a few.  This conversation ended up with everyone curiously thinking about the amount of money the owner had spent on constructing it and money he still possess.

“My hobby right now is to make Money” was the statement one of my colleague made. He went on to say that he was not getting enough time to continue his hobby seriously. I was stunned… had a big exclamatory mark on my face. My  friends didn’t heed to those words I thought, but those words caught my attention.Damn! … What a cool hobby to have … 🙂

If anyone is confronted with a question what are your hobbies? You get the most common answers like reading books, Music, cricket… blah blah, but look at this Guy.! I probably would say he was the epitome of money grubbing person coz we as “Software Engineers” would almost draw a six figure salary or more annually but still having money making as a hobby!

All said and done but, when i thought deeply about this exotic hobby, I myself seem to be divided on this from within. One side of me feels,  If i start calculating and thinking of all the ways of making money so as to secure my  future … when would i living my life to the fullest. I have seen people sitting glued to TV Channels, hearing to that pause-less conversations about the Market, trying hard to understand complex calculations and dynamics of it, eying to make profits in every highs and lows. This was just an example I chose which always makes news. Be it any public places, newspapers or even vehicles all are flooded with advertisements telling you how to make money.  Honestly i never ever dreamt of all this during my college days.

But on the flip side, i think there is nothing wrong in dreaming big and working relentlessly towards it “LEGALLY” because every person coming from middle class family wants to make it big in his life. In tracking the Market you get a general awareness about money transactions and since our professional career is also a part of it, becomes all that more important. When i gaze at the traffic ahead of me on my way to office, i see hundreds of cars, SUV’s starting from luxurious to more luxurious ones. I would keep on imagining how it feels to lay hands on those highly sensitive power steering wheels which gives you the control of maneuvering a vehicle with your finger tips,  those upholstered seats, AC …  only to be brought back to reality with a loud honk from behind.   Damn! … When would I own one of them. I some times wonder if those people have made making money as their hobby.  I am not stopping at cars; there is an entire world out there which can be owned. This hobby has become every successful person’s prerogative and sure many wouldn’t want to take this hobby lightly.

So next time if any one asks you this question what’s your hobby? What would you say…? Hopefully the truth 🙂


— Go Green, Save a Tree —

March 2, 2009 at 9:54 am 4 comments


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