Sunday, September 13, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Saturday, July 11, 2009
One of the first thing that bites you if you're into photography is what subject to photograph? Do you just take pictures of the same ole' flowers, monuments or do you try to be different. The problem with trying to being different is finding out all those things which haven't been captured before. So, you hunt for those places/things (either mentally or physically) and then give up and in the end take the pictures of the same subjects which have been taken umpteen times before (butterfly on a flower, a flower petal, sunsets etc). You still believe that at least your photographs offer something different, maybe, a new perspective, a new *vision* (basically, all the things that you try to convince yourself with). Then, you get into some equipment acquisition syndrome and dream of owning the best in the class (read the most expensive); Zeiss & Leica lenses, Nikon D3X, Hasselblad: if something is so freaking expensive it gotta be good, right?
I am one of the 3 people in my country (the other two haven't been vociferous about it yet) who owns a 4/3rds system (a Olympus e-510), and honestly apart from a tiny-winy viewfinder; I haven't had too much to complain about the camera (I generally take all the blame for out of focus, horrifically shaky pics). Quite a few people have asked me why I invested into a 4/3rds system; well; just like my any other investment it wasn't something that I carefully thought about but was just an impulsive buy (I didn't even try it or any other brand before buying). It's a funny thing that I always believed I don't need a dSLR and was happy with my P&S (a Canon A95) till I decided to go for a trip to Corbett National Park where I had an opportunity to capture a tiger in the wild for the first time and boy, did I manage to capture it with a 3x optical zoom of Canon! I think sometimes you just need a better equipment to bail yourself out. Anyway, has the dSLR made me a better photographer than before? No, definitely not but it does allow me to experiment a bit more and push my own creative limits…it reminds me of a saying that I read long ago:
The difference between a picture and painting is that
a picture is a frozen captured moment of true life,
whereas a painting can be anything imagined in your mind.
..... someday, all these paintings will become pictures.
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Apart from that I have revitalized my love for photography (albeit in a very small way) and have been bitten by LAS (Lens Acquisition Syndrome). I also think, I should start something like "How-I-Took-It" posts, where I can just dissect my photo and the technique that I used to capture the shot (Ok, I am no pro but I guess I have the basic concepts of photography clear).
Sunday, March 22, 2009
We've been using solr on our asp.net project for quite a bit now and have been quite pleased with it, everything went great till we had to support character based language (Chinese to be more specific). Based on my research, I decided to use CJKAnalyzer for analyzing and tokenizing and the results returned were generally acceptable, the only issue being the results were not sorted in any rather random order if I asked solr to sort results alphabetically. After couple of hours of hunting solr user groups and looking at the solr source, I realized that solr does'nt provide any support for locale sensitive sorting. Since finding out the problem is half the problem already solved, all I had to do was extend from solr's built-in StrField; add support for another attribute (locale) in schema.xml and pass that to new instance of SortField and voila, solr was happily returning the results sorted by pinyin. In case you are interested, below is the discussion around the problem and the JIRA issue for solr (which has the new locale sensitive custom java class):
Sunday, March 08, 2009
1) Where am I?
I don't think I know where I am in terms of my mental & emotional state; the scary thing is that I don't even care any longer.
2) Am I happy doing what I am doing?
No, I am not happy doing what I am doing either professionally or personally. Life has just been meandering along all these years. Earlier, I would get all worked up and try to change things that I wouldn't like but off-late it's more of sorta resigning to the facts...I don't even feel like doing anything to change my life and/or its course.
3) Do I know what I want?
Everyone will tell you that they are not getting what they want, the trouble is very few of us are even aware of what we really want. I have no guilt in admitting that I don't know what I want in my life. I can tell for sure what I DON'T want, but I don't know what will make me happy, any longer. It's just that sometimes, I feel like running away; don't know what I want to run away from, perhaps myself.
4) Have I changed over these years?
Yes, I have and quite a bit. I don't feel that strongly about anything. I used to fight for what I felt was right; I don't now. I have no problems in doing what others want me to do cause I don't feel strongly for or against anything. I believe feelings are strongly connected with your emotions and since I spent so many emotions over these years; it looks like my emotions have run out. I just go through the motions now; don't want to change anything or more rightly put; don't have any strength and motivation to change anything. Why shall I change something which doesn't matter to me, anyway?
5) Do I deserve more?
I don't know, anyway it doesn't matter what I think. My life has always been dictated by what others wanted in their life; perhaps I've let people come too close to me and yes, if I get a second chance I would still do the same thing over & over again without event a second thought.
Friday, February 20, 2009
<meta name="no-cookies" content="cdn.example.com,cdn1.example.com...">
And, in case I want to exclude certain file types on the same parent domain itself from receiving any cookies, I could do:
<meta name="no-cookies-for-files" content="jpg,js,css...">
The second meta tag will ensure that browser doesn't send back the cookies for any (static) content which doesn't need the cookies even though the content is served by the same domain. The no-cookies-for-files has to be file extension based instead of MIME based cause to figure out the MIME type, the browser has to make a request first. We can extend this idea even further; but I guess adding these two meta tag support (call it anything that you wish) would be great!
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Enter popfly:I had played with popfly when it was launched; and couple of days back I decided to log in to see if there was any new features/improvements to it; first thing that I figured out was that none of my blocks were working! Fixing them wasn't tough and since I had long ago written a flickr block to retrieve photos from flickr; I decided to re-use it for my flower search. The logic is quite straight-forward; the block expects the city name (actually, a place) as a user input; hits flickr to get the place id for the user entered text and then hits flickr again with a hard-wired query (currently set to: flower+bloom). Since, I would most probably be only interested in finding the recent blooms (instead of flowers blooming last summer), the code also limits the photos to the ones which were taken in last two months (current month-2). Finally, the block wires the output to a display block to display the flowers in some kinda slide show. I ran into couple of issues with the wiring of display block I decided to use (ImageSlideShow): it wouldn't clear the images before starting a new slideshow; this would mean if I search for say Boston first, and in the mid of slideshow; decide to search for Seattle; the seattle flowers are appended to the boston list! Fixing this issue meant, ripping off the ImageSlideShow block; exposing the clearImages method and calling it in the glue code between flickr block and ImageSlideShow block. Once, the mashup was all set; I decided to create a web-page around it in popfly; unfortunately the html generated is not the best (understatement) and I haven't felt like tweaking it (yet). I generally don't like iframes but that's what you get with popfly and I still haven't figured out a way to change the background of my mashup. Anyway, in case you are interested in giving [i]bloomrtm a twirl; you can give it a shot here: on popfly or here