January 31, 2010

College- How its been going on these days!!!

Hi Guys,
It’s been two weeks since college started. In this post I’ll be writing about how college is going on these days.
To begin we have 6 theory papers as usual. They are Manufacturing Technology II (MT), Numerical Methods and Statistics (NMS), Electron Devices and Microprocessors (EDM), Strength of Materials (SOM), Engineering Materials and Metallurgy (EMM) and Finally Heat and Mass Transfer (HMM).
Of these the last two papers have turned out to be the most troublesome subjects of this semester, thanks to the respective teachers.
We had just 2 or 3 classes in MT for the past two weeks. Since the staff has gone to evaluate I semester papers, I think we won’t have this period for the following week too. His classes are as usual. There will be a lot of information about industries, but most of the guys will be sleeping in his classes.
Statistics classes are going on well. It is a math oriented paper, but it is very much deviated from the ordinary math papers. It’s so easy doing sums. You need to substitute the formula, write down the given data and do the calculations using calculator, write down the answer. That’s it. All the problems can be solved in a single sheet.
Electron devices classes are also going well. We are studying the same old stuff. Semiconductors, Diodes, Forward bias, reverse bias and all those things. We have got a very good lecturer for this subject. He won’t take class for the last 10 or 15 minutes. Guys take advantage of this leniency. They will go out of the class before he enters the class and they will be roaming somewhere and will enter the class after 15, 20 minutes.
SOM classes are going well for me, but badly for other students. It’s a problematic paper dealing with stress, strain, elongation of materials. We have got the same staff who took, Fluid Mechanics last semester. The problem is that she is pushing the students to a great extent. She comes 2 or3 times a day (but, there will be only 1 SOM in time table). Since, SOM Lab experiments are very easy, she will be converting the remaining lab hours into classes. She will be giving problems after problems and students find it very difficult. The reason why I said I liked these classes was, I used to solve the problems very quickly. When I finish a problem, other guys would be struggling half the way, which means I can take rest for the remaining time. So actually 20 of the 50 minutes would be rest time for me.
EMM classes are turning out to be a nightmare for us. It has to do a lot with metals, their compositions, phases, etc. In the initial stages the staff would switch on the Over Head Projector and read out whatever is present there. For the past few days, he is taking problems on phase diagrams. He will read out a problem. For example the problem will be like this. Metal A has melting point at 800K. Metal B has melting point at 900K. At 600K, 12% metal A will be dissolved in metal B. There will be a few more points. Then he will call someone to draw the X-Y axis, followed by another guy to mark the points. 30 minutes will be passed before all these happen. I think even a 6th or 7th grade student would finish it within 10 minutes. Following this, he will call someone to draw some lines. The period will be over by then. He has given an assignment for this weekend that consists of 4 theory questions. I don’t know what is the use of writing these questions.
Finally let me move to HMT. It is one hell of a subject for students. No one is able to understand what the respective staff is trying to say. Most of the classes would deal with problems. But the problem is that she herself won’t know how to solve those problems. But in my point of view, the subject is very interesting. It deals with convection, conduction and radiation. I read some of the concepts from a book and also from net, they were mesmerizing. Also, another interesting thing guys discussed at the starting of the semester is that in the movie Vaaranam Aayiram, Surya will fail in HMT.
Generally, college is going on well these days. Since this semester turned to be a short semester things are racing. There are also interdepartmental activities in this semester like Sports and cultural events. Most of the sports events are over. Cultural events will be starting in a fortnight and the mood has been high among the students. Practice sessions are going on every evening and guys are very passionate.
Also, it’s been 18 months since we met each other and we have got into some sort of a group. Initially everyone had the feeling that our college was a stricter one and there was no room to enjoy. Now also the rules are the same, but we have created rooms to enjoy. Despite the troubles, we have great fun.
Even though some of the subjects are taking a heavy toll from us, we need to adapt with it. We can’t expect life to be smooth always, for there won’t be anything then. As people say ‘Life is not a bed of Roses’
Happy Reading!!!

January 21, 2010

Interesting Automobile Videos from YouTube

Hi Guys,

In this post, I'll be attaching some interesting videos related with automobile.
I came across these videos in YouTube last week.

Henry Ford's Assembly Line concept

How an Engine Works- A video from How Stuff Works

Ford Engine's Animation

How clutches work- A video from Howstuff works

Manufacturing of a Marine Engine at Caterpillar

Happy Viewing!!!

January 17, 2010

Holiday Activities V

Hi Guys,

I’ll continue my holiday activities in this post.

14-1-10 (Thursday) was Pongal. It was festive time here. I accompanied mom to the market to buy vegetables the previous day. It was very busy and the mood was great there. Pongal is the festival celebrated to mark the harvest season. People thank the Sun God for the good harvest. Mom kept Pongal in the morning. There was a good lunch in the afternoon.

Green Get Together

In the afternoon, I went to my old school. A Get Together was organized by the alumni association. It was very nice to see my old friends. The main theme of the get-together was ‘Go Green’. There was a short football match (a 20 minute match), mobile photography contest and a 10 minute drawing contest. The prizes were plant saplings in accordance with the theme. We won the football match and hence each one of us got a sapling (It was very difficult carrying it to home. The pot was very heavy). Some old staff members came for the function. A volunteer from each of the batches told about their sweet memories in the school. The function ended well y 5.30 pm. We had some refreshments after the function. Then I was chatting with my friends for a long time. I came back home by 7 pm.

Mattu Pongal
15-1-10 (Friday) was Mattu Pongal. It is celebrated to thank the cattle for their help in the farm. The day went without much of activity. The day also marked the longest solar eclipse in the recent times. It nearly existed for 4 hours. I watched the movie ‘Santosh Subramaniyam” in television that evening. I think it is the 4th time I watched this film.

Naanayam- A movie with big twists
On 16-1-10 (Saturday) I went to the movie ‘Naanayam’ in a nearby theatre. The theater consists of 2 screens and Avatar was running in the other screen. A large crowd was there for Avatar, particularly there were lots of children. There was some good crowd for Naanayam too.

The movie was nice. It was a Tamil movie with a bit of Hollywood flavor at many places. The hero Prasanna designs a fool proof locker for Trust Bank, Chennai. Due to that it is advertised as the world’s safest bank. Sibiraj blackmails Prasanna and forces him to help rob the bank. Having no other go, Prasanna takes the blueprint of the design and engages himself in danger. The movie is full of twists and turns. Background score and Cinematography are its biggest plus while songs are its minus.

With this I finish off my Holiday activities post. Tomorrow, my classes begin. I’ll soon come up with other interesting posts.

Happy Reading!

January 13, 2010

Holiday Activities IV

Hi guys,

 Let me continue from Friday, the 8th Jan 2010.

Breaking the Keyboard
There was no driving class today since the driver was on leave.

In the evening, I went to the CAD class. We were drawing a diagram of pipe vice in the practice session.
Suddenly there was a heavy sound behind me. I turned quickly and saw that Vimal’s keyboard and drawer had fallen on the floor since he was attempting to pull it beyond the limit. Luckily for him, no one noticed it. When we went there the next day someone had fixed it.

How hard it is to search an Address
9-1-10 (Saturday) was a pleasant day. The climate was more enjoyable than usual. My webcam was not working properly for the past few days I noted down the service center’s address from the bill. It was near my home (app. 1.5 km). But I didn’t know the exact location. When I went there I was baffled since all the roads were named as Cross streets (the service center was in the 9th cross street). Since they were not in a proper order, even the shopkeepers in that area were not able to guide me. Finally, when I thought of giving up, I found.  It was the very 1st street.

The way I found it out was interesting. While I was asking a shop keeper where the 9th Cross Street was, he told me that the next streets were 17th and 16th streets and so 9th Cross Street would be at the other end. Frustrated, I turned my head to find a sign board that read ‘9th North Cross Street’. However the service centre was closed.

A visit to Bala Kumar’s home
On 10-1-10 (Sunday), I went to my friend Bala Kumar’s home in the morning. This was my first visit to his home. His home is very close to Thirumalai Nayak Palace.

I went to his house by bus and there was heavy traffic. I haven’t been through that route much and so I was amazed by the way the shops had grown in number in this stretch. Many new buildings were also coming up, including the Madurai’s version of Citi Center, a celebrated shopping Mall in Chennai.

There was a huge crowd in the Palace. Though I have been living in Madurai from my childhood, I’ve never visited this Palace. The palace was built by the king Thirumalai Nayak in the 17th century. What exists today is only a part of the palace. The original structure is said to be 4 times bigger than now. The palace is known for its big pillars. A light and sound show is organized every evening. I decided that I must go there someday.
After spending a good time in his house, I came home in the afternoon.

‘District 13’- An action packed movie
On 11-1-10 (Monday), I attended the driving and CAD classes. That night I sat down to watch the movie District 13. It is the English translation of the French film Banlieue 13. It is a colony in the suburbs of Paris where social crimes increase and hence police bans the area. The hero Leito along with Damien, an undercover police officer fights Taho, the gang lord of B 13. The action sequences were amazing. I heard that the film had no stunts or computer graphics. Many Tamil movies have copied the fight sequences.

I wish all of you a very happy and sweet pongal!!!

Happy Reading!!!

January 12, 2010

Holiday Activities III

Hi guys,

I have registered my holiday proceedings up to 30-12-09 in my very last post. In this post I’ll prolong my activities.

Fever spoiling the New Year’s Mood
31-12-09 (Thursday) was New Year’s Eve. But I was suffering from heavy cold. There were lot of New Year wishes sent through SMS and mail. Greeting messages were reduced than the preceding days, since most of the mobile operators charged 50 ps or more for sending a message on both New Year’s Eve and New Year.

For the past three or four years, I used to be awake for the birth of New Year. But this time, I slept earlier as the cold was causing me a lot of problems. I realized certain guys may call in the midnight and hence I changed my phone’s profile to silent mode. The next day, I saw that there were two missed calls.
Driving classes went on well. The steering control was much enhanced than the previous day. CAD classes went on well.

New Year Celebrations
1-1-10 (Friday) was the New Year. It was quite eventless as I had terrible cold then too. I received some phone call on that day wishing a Happy New Year. I also called up some of my friends and wished them the same. There were no driving and CAD classes.

I exhausted most of the day watching TV. There were lots of special events telecasted in different channels for the New Year. Some channels focused on last year’s best things like Top 10 songs, Top 10 movies and so on. But to me they were not fitting lists. The movies produced by the respective channels dominated the lists. I watched a special ‘Neeya Naana’ in Vijay TV, which was based on horoscope. To know about the future events in 2010, 5 celebrated astrologers were called. But all the 5 were poles apart, making it a comedy show.

Other than that New Year means Resolutions for lot of people. But I do not take any resolutions. I have seen people taking resolutions and giving up within a week. The problem is they try to change dramatically from the present. It should be slow and steady.

How to disturb a class
2-1-10 (Saturday) began quite badly. My throat began to trouble me. So, I didn’t attend the early morning driving class (It was scheduled at 6 am).

We went to CAD classes as usual that evening. The class was going on very captivatingly. The staff was taking classes on ‘How to draw circles?’ Out of the blue, some music started to roll out. Everyone was edgy to see the source of music. The music turned out to be the song ‘Un parvayil Paithiamanen’. It was then that we found Vimal’s handset was full of life. He took the phone very casually out of his pocket and cut the call. He must have switched off his phone or at least he must have acted instantly.

Vimal’s pranks in CAD classes are continuing still now (read the last paragraph).

Misplaced Class
3-1-10 (Sunday) was a better day for me. My cold started falling down. Saturdays and Sundays are actually holidays for us in CADD centre (since we are in week batches). But our staff forgot that and he asked us to come. There was no problem on Saturday, but on Sunday when he was taking classes for us, another batch of students came. So we had to discontinue our class for that day.

‘Intelligent’ Vimal
The following week was a routine week with no very special events. But some attention-grabbing events occurred in the CAD classes.

Our trainee was taking classes about drawing an arc 9 (I don’t remember the exact day). The command used is ‘arc’. The style of arc that can be drawn from this option is ‘3 point arc’. But there are 9 other types of arc, which can be selected from the menu bar. Vimal suddenly asked, “Sir is there command for all these types of arcs”. He replied, “There are commands, but those are quite complex. If I give it now, you will get confused. I’ll give it later”. Vimal said, “Sir it is very difficult for me to use the mouse. Key board will be much convenient”. Sir countered, “For a person like you, there is an editor in AutoCAD using which you can type the commands and the drawing will directly appear” (actually I thought he was making fun, but there is an editor really). Everyone started to laugh.

Another day Sir was taking class about some toolbar. He was using AutoCAD 2007 to explain, but our syllabus is for AutoCAD 2010. Most of the features will be same, but certain additional tools will be provided. He told that in 2007 version only 4 tabs are given, but in 2010 version another additional tab will be there and he told that it will be very easy to use. Vimal started smiling idiotically. Sir said, “Ivaru sirikaradha partha puriyale pola iruke. Fine, I’ll explain the concept”. I and Dhas were frustrated. I told, “Sir, ivan elame panni parthuthu theriyalenu solvan”. Vimal started replying but Sir asked, “Oh, ivaru than unga classla intelligent payana”. Dhas instantly said “Correct –a sonninga sir”.

At least then we thought his troubles would trim down. But they are increasing every day.

 My driving skills are honing each day. Today (7-12-10: Thursday) was the better of all drives.

I’ll keep you updated about my holiday activities in the successive posts.

Happy Reading!

P.S: I typed this post on 7-1-10 itself. But I’m posting it now.

January 2, 2010

Ghost Story

Hi Readers,

Do you believe in ghosts?
Read my encounter with ghost in this post.

If you ask me the same question I asked you, I will be saying a big ‘No!’

You will be able to think very clearly when you are bounded by people and light. If you are surrounded by people and the power goes off unexpectedly and if someone starts to create mystifying noises, the hint of terror begins to appear. But if you are alone and you start sensing strange things, then you will be filled with great fear.

It was 30-12-09, last Wednesday and the day before New Year’s Eve. My parents went to bed as usual around 10 pm. I was surfing the official website of Solidworks (a CAD software). It was 10.45 pm. I started to feel drowsy and I went to bed.

I was not able to sleep. Things started to turn out. I sensed that some mosquitoes were biting me. It was very amazing, because the mosquito repellent was switched on. After some couple of unsuccessful attempts, I finally succeeded (there were 2 of them). Celebrating the triumph with a grin, I closed my eyes.

Suddenly I started hearing repeating sounds. The sound resembled the click of a computer’s mouse. The first thing that came into my mind was a thief. I was pondering about it. I thought the thief might try to wake me up and do something. I gallantly took the mobile phone and searched the area with the mobile phone’s light. There was no one near the computer table or under my bed.

Now I again closed my eyes. The sound started again. But this time there were more noises. Now my mind alarmed me that it might be a ghost. It was similar to the movie ‘Paranormal Activity’. Though I haven’t seen the film, I’ve read the story. It was as if some spirit was roaming inside my bedroom.

I didn’t know what to do and my face was filled with sweat. 15 minutes passed by. I didn’t know what to do. The sound was also not stopping. Somehow I brought courage and stepped out of my bed. I ran and switched on the light (light potta pei odi poidumnu oru nambikai).

Nothing mysterious happened. I just knelt down and searched the area below the bed. Nothing was there. I turned my eyes toward the computer table. There I saw a piece of paper. It was striking the leg of the table and that was the source of the sound.

I took the paper from there. My mother has used it to write down something from the internet. She has left it on the table. It has flown down due to the air created by the ceiling fan. The same has been the basis for the paper producing noises.

Feeling comfortable, I saw my phone. It was 12.05 am. I switched off the light and slept comfortably. The next morning I found that the reason for the mosquitoes biting was that the repellent’s liquid had been drained.

I won’t forget that night in my life!