In India, cricket is more a religion than a sport. From the billionaires to the beggars, every ndian has his/her own take on the issues and developments in the game. The most recent edition of the IPL was a carnival worth $5 billion. While the world of cricket bustles through every street in the country, the world of hockey presents a darker picture. The team failed to qualify for the Beijing Olympics four years ago. In the on-going London Olympics, India finds itself battling for the eleventh spot. In 2010, we witnessed the unfortunate situation of the hockey contingent threatening to pull out of the World Cup as the players were not paid their match fees. The game just doesn’t earn lucrative revenue in our part of the world. India’s National Sport certainly does not live up to its status, and the thought of cricket being regarded as the national sport has once again resurfaced and is therefore one worth a nation-wide discussion.
In the year 1900, even though the British imposed strict tenets on Indians in every walk of their life, yet they allowed India to send her own contingent to Paris for the Olympics. The contingent comprised of just one man – Norman Pritchard. He wontwo silver medals. For India, the achievement was a symbol of victory over the Imperialists.It was a statement to the British highlighting eloquently India’s competency amongst free nations.
Since 1920 India has participated in every Olympics.She won her first gold medal in field hockey in the 1928 games held in Amsterdam. Dhyan Chand became a superstar in India, and was recognised internationally as a wizard on the hockey field. The medal brought overwhelming pride to India. It was an honour for her countrymen to be recognized for their calibre in an international arena. In the following two Olympics –Los Angeles 1932 and Berlin 1936, India showcased themselves as powerhouses in field hockey.They won gold medals in both the events taking their streak of gold to three in the Olympics. The team comprised of Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians who competed side-by-side and eventually took the cup. The victory showed the Indians the meaning of ‘unity in diversity’. It taught them to set their individual differences aside and fight against the common enemy – this had eventually become the motto of their strife for independence.
The 1948 Olympics was a special one for the entire world. The political tensions during and after the World War-II marked a 12 year hiatus for the Olympics. The quad-annual event resumed in 1948 after the tensions had subsided. Although India had little to do with the World War, she had her own share of problems. The partition of India, led to the formation of a new nation called
Pakistan. India lost a rich recruiting ground for hockey talent. The hockey fraternity which was an integral part of the previous Olympic victories had migrated to Pakistan. India was left with a brand new team, which had little to exhibit in terms of experience. None of the new players was part of the team that won in Berlin.
The young Indian team played with vengeance. It won four matches in a row and found itself in an encounter against the tournament hosts England. On September 12th, India thrashed England 4-0 in the final and took her fourth consecutive Olympic gold medal. The victory over England was deeply embedded in the hearts of the people of that era. India defeated the country that ruled her for over 200 years. The fact that it happened in London was an icing on the cake. A gold medal may seem a small consolation for the 200 years of suppression. But that was not the way the Indians saw it. For them, it was revenge – a fitting and cold revenge. Jubilation across India was rampant. The triumph overpowered the length and breadth of the country and India was truly exuberant.
India went on to win the gold medal in the next two Olympics as well – taking the streak to a world record: 6 consecutive titles spanning 28 years. India still holds the record for the most number of Olympic gold medals won by any individual nation in field hockey.
Cricket may run through the blood of India’s children. But that does not bring forth enough credentials to attain the status of India’s National Sport. Hockey is the sport which brought India its first international recognition. It is the game that taught Indians to stay united despite their petty differences. It is the game which showed the people of India that they truly belong to the free world. It is the game that allowed India to take sweet revenge against her conquerors.At present, India would be extremely pleased to receive extraordinary monetary benefits from cricket. But she certainly cannot forget the game that was played victoriously at the most defining moment of her history. Hockey is most deservedly India’s National Sport.
And here I am - Higg's Boson
A Dark Knight a Day
An apple's view of Nexus7
The roar of thousands is pounding in my ears as I receive the ball near the centre circle. Xavi rushes to close me down as I let the ball run between my legs and dummy him. Then as I rush forward at full speed, Busquets slides in but I manage to evade the tackle with a deft cut. Sergio Ramos is up next but I dazzle him with an array of stopovers and leave him for dead. Gerard Pique gets nutmegged as I bear down on goal with only Casillas to beat. I fake to shoot once and as he goes down I chip the ball over him, and as the ball hits the underside of the bar and is about to go in, I am rudely awakened with a splash of water on my face, my dream World Cup moment still far off. As my Mom helps me get ready she goes on and on about the amount of time I am wasting on football and how I should decide to do something useful with my life after graduation.
8 20 AM : I reach College 10 minutes early and there is the nerd of the class surrounded by a big group hanging on to every word out of his mouth. He goes on and on about how he is joining CAT classes and how the MBA will guarantee him a job and secure his future . He places a fatherly hand over my shoulder and advises me about how talented I am and how I am not using my intelligence. Hmmm… Maybe I should think about joining MBA classes
10 15 AM : Professor Viru Shastrabuddhi has invited his all time favourite student Jagan to talk to our ‘useless’ batch and advise us about our future. Mr. Jagan goes on to describe how he completed his MS from Oxford University of Civil Engineering, Switzerland and is now working in a MNC who are now employed by the Chinese Government to repair the Great Wall of China. He describes the job satisfaction as well as the fat paycheck he receives with an ugly grin on his face. Maybe I should think about applying to the ‘Oxford University of Civil Engineering, Switzerland’ or OUCE as he calls it.
3 15 PM : The college has organized a ‘must attend’ guest lecture by a high profile IPS Mr. Anbuchelvan. I am enamored by the convoy of cars and the amount of respect he commands, as he entered the hall fully fed with hot samosas and tea on the way. He grunts and elaborates on the range of power he wields and the respect he commands in the society. His talk makes taking UPSC as the easiest choice for a life of comfort, money and power. My poor mind is now drooling at the prospect of taking UPSC even though I dont have the slightest idea about it.
6:00 PM : I switch on the TV and first up a TV show features a hugely successful entrepreneur Mr. Zark Muckerberg, one who had chosen to initiate his own company and had become the stalwart that he was. In the subsequent interview he explained how innovation and the ability to take risks can propel anyone to a life of satisfaction, self respect and a name to be remembered for ages. The show was presented in a way that made it a highly attractive option fuelled further by my parents who had chosen to sit right beside me at the wrong moment.
11:00 PM : As I was about to retire for the night, I was thoroughly confused about my future. Aimlessly flipping through channels I was about to switch off the TV, when I hit upon a replay of the El Classico. The speed of passing, the pace of movement was just unbelievable. Watching it, I felt like a man on a pilgrimage reaching his destination. As I close my eyes, a familiar scene plays out in my head.
May be I should, after all become...
And here I am- The Higg's Boson
** But what are you, what do you do, and more importantly, why should we care (or should we even)? **
Ahem, ahem. I’ll ignore the rude interruption (you earthlings have no manners nowadays, I tell you) and go ahead with what I was saying. And what was I saying? Oh yeah. Let me announce it again. Often touted as the god’s particle, I, the Higgs’ Boson, am here. Not that I was not here before. If I weren’t, you wouldn’t be either, but that’s an entirely different matter altogether. Now, before you earthlings jump at my throat (though I have none) and demand me to prove it, I choose to satiate your curiosity.
It all started with Mr. Einstein. He said E=mc2, proving energy is mass and mass, energy theoretically and paved the way for the nuclear bombs, proving the same experimentally (though I am sure Hiroshima-Nagasakhi weren’t his idea of experiments). And then arose the question. But where does this mass come from?
When the earth scientists did their mathematical mumbo-jumbo with what they knew about the universe then, they found that all the particles, electrons, protons, neutrons, quarks etc., etc. should be massless . But of course, that would imply the scientists themselves must be massless! Now saying that “We have proved we don’t exist” doesn’t sound very good on their behalf, does it? And so, Mr. Peter Higgs conjectured the “Higgs’ Boson” as an excitation of the Higgs’ field (yay! That’s me! My original name is too complicated for you earthlings to understand and pronounce, hence I stick to the name given to me by Mr. Higgs—I wonder if he has my name or I, his).
And so, to you earthlings, now I had a name, and I was an “excitation of Higgs’ field”. But that still doesn’t explain how I give “mass” to the particles. In fact, come to think about it. It’s paradoxical to think that one particle gives mass to another. Then who would give mass to me, right? Well, let me explain it to you, your way:
Consider a ball room full of people where they are randomly scattered. One person enters the room. Not knowing anyone in the room (or maybe he’s hated by everyone so that no one bothers to talk to him), he just walks through the room quietly and exits it from the opposite end. Another person enters the room. But unlike that unknown and/or hated guy, this person is Christian Bale. Now, instead of letting him leave quietly through the other end, people cluster around him to congratulate him for The Dark Knight Rises. Because of this, his passage is hindered and he is slowed down. More the number of people clustering around him, the lower is his speed.
This ball room full of people spread out randomly and equally is the Higgs’ field, and the ball room encompasses the whole universe. The group of people clustering around Christian Bale, i.e. the group of people who got “excited” on seeing him, are the Higgs’ Boson (yes, that’s me *beaming smile looking at the expression of dawning of understanding on the
earthling’s face*). Just as the clustering of people deters the actor’s motion, interaction with me and my brothers deters the motion of other (popular) particles. Depending on how much the other particle’s excite us, they gain mass. Your 7th standard textbook will tell you “mass is a measure of inertia” and “inertia is the ability of a body to continue in its state of rest or of motion” or, more the inertia of the body, more would be the amount of force required to change the state of motion of the body. So you see, this is how the inertia, and hence mass, arises. The more the no. of Higgs’ bosons clustering around the particle, more difficult it is for the particle to move, and more force would be required to change its direction and speed of motion!
But what about particles like photons and neutrinos which do not have mass at all? These are like the first person who entered the room. Photons are the hated ones (we bosons tend to hate them with passion) and to the small, willy-nilly neutrinos, we are just plain indifferent.
But mostly, we are a friendly lot of people. We tend to interact with most, some might complain that we slow them down (without us, every single particle would be whizzing around the whole universe at the speed of light—from our light cousins electrons to our heavy big brother W bosons). Why, without us, even you earthlings would be flying around at that speed (actually, you wouldn’t exist at all, but as I had said, that is an entirely different matter altogether). And what’s worse, no sleep, no lying down, no sitting down, no rest for you! So you must thank us Higgs’ bosons for the comfort of your mattresses and bean bags.
Ladies there! Hear, hear! Before you start accusing us of providing you with extra mass, and before you ask us to go away from you so that every morning when you check your weight (which is related to your mass anyway), it always reduces, let me tell you ladies, we love you.
So, people looking to shed a few extra kilos, please don’t look at us. We are not the magic potion to reduce your weight. Unless of course, you can build a machine that’s fast and big enough to do exactly that: our separation from the particles we love.
But consider this: the Large Hadron Collider, which found us experimentally, was 27 km in circumference and cost $4.4 billion. If you are that rich and have the resources to build something 10 times larger than that, then go ahead. But let me warn you first. The mass reduction will last for less than a millionth of a millionth of a second. But more importantly, you will be squished and collided and made to travel so fast, your body (or the object of your choice) won’t remain intact anyway.
PEOPLE YOU'D JUST LOVE TO HUG (And hopefully crush their innards)
Let me just confirm again. Any resemblance to people around or far away, is purely intentional. All of us have those people around us who we keep wishing never existed - The tireless flies that buzz around our head, till we are driven to near insanity. Here is a list of these types of Homo sapiens, who make pretty good 'flies'.
This variety comes in many shapes, sizes and ages. They spend their time talking about themselves until the life is completely drained out of the listener with most of the sentences coming out of their mouths starting with 'I', 'me' or 'myself'. More often than not, the showoff has a terrible inferiority complex, which they try to hide or cover by talking (after adding more that a vat of butter), about their glorious escapades that interest nobody but themselves.
This class of people belong to the race of 'Talkers' too, but unlike the showoffs, they do not necessarily say nice things about themselves. Instead, they find their inner peace when reciting fables and epics not about the Gods but instead about people they barely know. The gossip is normally most irritating to the person that he/she picks as a target to gossip about with stories ranging from their love life to their academic performance. People who find it amusing are most probably gossips themselves. BEWARE!
Frankly, most of us are, in one way or the other 'wannabes'. We model ourselves on a person we really on a person we really love or admire. But to the guy who takes self shots, INSIDE a room, with sunglasses on, and one of those dupattas/ scarves which he wears for no reason around his neck. But trust me, you look almost like a penguin with the only difference being, penguins are actually cute. And since we are making a reference to birds here anyway, to all the 'ducks' out there on Facebook, pouting does not particularly make you look all that great, I'm sorry. I am no beauty guru, but how about trying a smile, the next time? (Or frankly, any other look for that matter)
The Irritating Traveller
Personally, one of my least favorites. And that's saying a lot, because I'm not particularly fond of the 'others' either. The most recent of my encounters with one of them being on a flight, where a man probably in his 40s, was unfortunately sitting next to me. He had a pot belly, and a thick gold chain around his chin (I did not particularly notice a neck) and took up almost half my seat. He seemed insistent on making a racket and kept yelling to the cabin crew how important he was and threatening to get them into trouble, just because the chicken dint have enough salt in it. And all Indians would have met the old ladies on buses and trains who try to get the best seats for themselves and keep shouting at everyone around them to move and make space for them. Don't blame me for hating travelling.
The Nosey ones
People who try making everything their business fall into this one. Questions starting with 'What', 'Why', 'When', 'Where', and 'How' form a major part of their vocabulary. Seriously, why in the world should what you're doing matter to them anyway? It's not like they care.
Next time you encounter one of these rare species, weave a psychotic tale in which you plan to murder your classmates during class like a crazed gunman and watch him flee the scene.
Another set of people I am allergic to. Nobody has the right to think they are better than others, and nobody has the right to forcibly or physically take advantage of people who are perhaps weaker than them, or more timid. Whatever form bullying takes, it is and always will be a social evil. It's upto the rest of us to put an end to it. Next time a bully tries to take your lunch decide to spice up your lunch with atleast ten spoons of chilli powder and watch him relish your lunch.
Everybody else who is annoying
Okay, by now, most people probably think I'm a grouch. Thing is, I kind of ran out of classifications. But I cannot end this write up saying there are just six kinds of people who annoy me/us. I'm sure there are a lot of other exotics too, but it would be difficult mentioning all of them.
All I can say is, there's no point in letting anybody ruin your fun. So just go about enjoying life, taking it as it comes. If it gets unbearable, give them a hug! And hopefully you'll crush their innard
- Luna Lovegood
Startup Focus - The road not taken
Pulse72plus has started to include interviews of successful entrepreneurs since the last edition. In the last edition, Mr.Rajagopal, an entrepreneur who runs a coaching institute for guiding budding entrepreneurs gave us a brilliant insight into the world of business. This time around we have interviewed Mr.K.Mohan, the man behind KVL innovations.
KVL is a tech based start-up focussing on a wide variety of research oriented fields. Now, don’t come to conclusions that this is just another we-are-still-researching-on- that-big-idea company that has been started by a group of enthusiastic teens. Sorry to disappoint if you had that thought on your mind. KVL has successfully managed to convert a lot of big ideas into products, a few of which are awaiting their patents to be granted. They have quite a few clients and are moving forward at a brisk rate.
Well, you might ask – What is so great about this start-up ?
The founder of KVL is a student doing his B.Tech in SRM, Chennai. But he is no ordinary student, thanks to his 8 state awards and 7 national awards, including the young scientist award. With a mission to positively impact India with world class technological innovations, KVL is all set and ready to give to our society a truck load of good products. One of their products has been titled as – ‘Automatic Dosa Machine’. Now that is definitely going to be a rage with home-makers once it is out in the market. Till then we can only wonder about the television commercials that are going to accompany it....
What was the original inspiration behind starting KVL ?
I am an innovator. I always wanted my ideas to impact society productively and in a positive way. I wanted to solve the day to day problems that persist in society and made technology my sole ally to solve them. I needed a platform to support my ideas and KVL was born.
How is KVL different from other start-ups ?
To be honest, I am not bothered about others. I want to be the best at what I do.
Which according to you is your best innovation so far ?
I have invented an herbal mosquito repellent. It has a lifetime of five hundred days and can be used in the existing mosquito repellent devices. This invention fetched me national recognition and I was honoured with an award that I received from none other than Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam in IIT Madras. A Malaysian company wanted to use this invention of mine, but I was not happy with their terms. KVL will soon bring this product to the society at a minimal price of Rs 3/- once the product is granted a patent.
What were the hardships you faced in starting and running KVL ?
I had a clear idea in mind when I started KVL and hence there were not
many difficulties to tackle with. Moreover, I have a good team with me. The finance, expenditure and management part did give me a few jitters once we started making money, but I had a good team and they had it all sorted out neatly.
You have quite a few clients. How do you maintain a steady bond with them ?
That is very simple. At KVL, we have a team dedicated to client relations.
At present a lot of youngsters are taking the route to becoming an entrepreneur. How did you end up in this route ?
I started working part time when I was in eighth standard. I used to wonder when I would become the owner of a company since those days. Guess I had my eyes set on that route a long time back!
How supportive are your family members ?
They did not believe in me until I got those awards. Now I have their full
support. KVL is named after the first letter’s of the names my father, brother and mother respectively.
Where do you see yourself 20 years later?
I should be the owner of 20 more companies (laughs).
If a fresher in your college aspiring to be an entrepreneur someday asks you for guidance, what would be your reply ?
I will tell him to have his ideas well etched out in his mind. Have a clear thought. Plan strategically. Take the plans forward. Talk to the right persons concerned. Never lose passion.
We have come a long way from the age of Gurukulams to schools to possessing a University degree. This change had to happen as it is not in our nature to get stuck in a rut. As the most intelligent species we hunger for change, we hunger for more, just more of everything. Now is the age of entrepreneurship. India is still trudging towards it. Yet to be an entrepreneur we have to change our style and attitude. Integrity should be our armour. Dedication and hard work should flow.But how can we make all this work within ourselves. We need to switch lanes. As we go through life each day, we have two paths ahead of us- a ‘judger’ path and a ‘learner’ path.Typically we tend to be in the judger path and this actually closes our journey. Next time before you judge any person/event ask yourself,’ do I want to be a judger or a learner?’ It will amaze you how much change it can bring in you. Once you begin to experience the change, you will gradually bring upon change in others. This is similar to the butterfly effect you might have heard of.
Psychotherapist/ Counsellor/ Educator
Swapna Nair is a National Award winning Secondary Grade Teacher of Social Science and English in various schools in India & abroad with more than 22 years of experience besides being a Psychotherapist/ Counsellor/ Educator.
A Dark Knight A Day
“A man and a woman and their only son cut through the alley after the movies. They get mugged. Two shots are fired. The man and woman fall dead.Their son lives… with a vengeance.”
Thus began the life of Bruce Wayne - billionaire philanthropist playboy who fights crime as a masked vigilante “Batman”. But this is just one amongst the many origin stories (and characters) that unravels to be the Dark Knight.
Here are 5 stories that show how the Dark Knight came to be :
Earth One Batman - Bruce Wayne
The most common pourqoi story of the series, the non -Nolan movies follow this same back-story of the titular character. However the choosing of the symbol of a Bat was purely chance.
Earth Two Batman - Bruce Wayne
Although the etiological origins of the Batman are common, The Earth Two Batman differs in the fact that Bruce chose the Bat symbol to make his enemies share his fear. He also marries a reformed Catwoman (Selina Kyle) and fathers Helena Wayne (the Huntress). Interestingly another point where the story diverges is that: a tragedy in Bruce’s life causes him to hang his cape and cowl. But his need to fight crime prevails and he becomes the Commissioner of Police.
Flashpoint Batman - Thomas Wayne
Another take on Batman led to a common question “What if Bruce Wayne died that night?”
This story deals with the pain inflicted on the Wayne family and how they deal with it. While Thomas Wayne decides to become a masked vigilante preventing other families from experiencing his loss, Martha Wayne on the other hand goes insane, blaming the world for stealing her son from her and turns into the Joker.
Batman beyond - Terry McGinnis
20 years after Bruce Wayne decides that the suit has become a liability, Gotham is on its decline. A teenager Terry McGinnis co-incidentally walks into the Wayne estate and also the Batcave. The murder of his father inspires him to don the cape and cowl. However the series takes the cake when a deeper more intricate story unravels… How is Terry such a good Batman? Do Bruce and terry have anything ELSE in common?
Stan Lee Batman - Wayne Willaims
What happens when Marvel does a mashup of the Batman?
The Stan Lee version has an African- American “Wayne Williams” pro- Wrestler who masquerades as a “Bat” both in and out of the ring. Much like the DC version, this Batman depends on a scientist for his tools of trade. After being framed in a murder, Wayne is jailed and vows revenge. But the feeling of revenge is overcome by the need to do good and he becomes the (K)night.
Which version of the bat do you like?
by Kapil G Aiyer
Transfer season – Summer of 2012
It has been yet another summer rife with transfer speculations and shocks alike. Let us have a look at some of the Highlights.
The signings of German striker Lukas Podolski and French national Olivier Giroud are probably the only rare positives in a summer dominated by one man – Robin van Persie, his refusal to sign a new contract with Arsenal has effectively started a free for all clash among a number of clubs with Manchester united, Liverpool, Manchester city, Juventus and Real Madrid all signalling their interest in signing the Dutch star, who cannot be blamed for wanting to leave. Fernando llorente has been lined up by Wenger to fill up the void left by the seemingly inevitable departure of their top goal scorer. At this point one has to feel that Arsenal lack ambition and was content enough to let Clichy, Fabregas, Nasri and now RVP leave when they have just reached their prime.
What is going on Mr.Wenger?
Chelsea pulled off probably what was the coup of the transfer season, with the signing of Eden Hazard right under Mancini and Ferguson’s nose. However they will have to re-examine their transfer policies, signing Kevin de Bryune , Marko Marin, Thorgan Hazard, Oscar and of course Eden Hazard, all players of similar style. Chelsea however do not have an out and out right back, with Bosingwa leaving the club and Ivanovic having voiced his desire to play in the centre of defense. Didier Drogba’s departure leaves a lot of responsibility on the shoulders of the 50 million man – Torres and another striker would help ease his burden.
Roman, for the umpteenth time leaves it to the experts.
It comes as a huge shock when so far into the transfer season and they still haven’t signed anyone, But having won the premier league, Mancini will hope RVP will be the spark they need on the European front.
The signing of Shinji Kagawa is a testimony to the shrewdness of Alex Ferguson, who at 17 million seems to be one of the bargains of the season. Nick Powell is yet another bright youth lured by the red devils. Manchester united have shown feverish interest in Lucas Moura who priced at more than 30 million seems to be a risky proposition.
A player who deserves his own section just for the amount of controversy he has generated, over the past 12 months. Last year it was Chelsea, now it’s Real Madrid, the facts remain the same, Modric wants out. Tottenham and Daniel Levy in particular need to understand that and let him go. A player who boycotts training, to force a transfer does not deserve to continue at the club and if Levy has any semblance of self-respect, he will let him go and use the money to rebuild his midfield.
Already weakened by the loss of the several veterans earlier in the summer, AC Milan have had a shocker of a transfer season losing out on Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva to big spending PSG, who for the moment seem to boast of a more formidable line up compared to AC Milan. They need to compensate for their losses ASAP to ready themselves for the long season ahead. But for now they seem quite happy to bide their time.
With plenty of rumours going around non-stop, the transfer frenzy doesn’t seem to be slowing down any time soon, with plenty more expected to come, be it about Andy Caroll or kaka or Nuri Sahin, hold on to your seats folks, It only gets better from here on.
- Anirudh Krishnan
Let’s get this clear. I’m what they call an Apple fanboy.
I await the arrival of every Apple product. I wait in queues to be the first among few to get my grisly hands on one and also shamelessly smile from ear to ear when they rename pre-existent technology as something ‘new’. So this take on a Google Nexus Tablet will NOT be unbiased. Period.
June 27th 2012 - Google pulled the wraps off a new product - Labelling it the ‘Nexus 7’. The small little Steve Jobs in my head was laughing at it - after all it was a 7 inch tablet. And then the laughter died down… to complete silence (accompanied with awe). Till now, seeing an android tablet only made me want to puke. But this.... This was different.
Powered by an nVidiaTegra 3 processor (which for your info is a quad-core CPU with an extra companion core), a 12 core graphics chip, 1GB RAM and a “killer” HD screen it still falls short of the iPad on everything. Well almost everything.
It starts at 199$ for an 8 GB model, which in comparison to the ‘Resolutionary’ iPad’s 499$ puts the apple lover in me into a dilemma. One month after its release, with the Nexus still going strong, would I rather sell my belongings to own an iPad or would I settle (Should I say ‘settle’?) for the Nexus?
All I can tell you is that the small Steve in my head is not very happy with my answer.