Monday, August 2, 2010


"Chennai? Never heard of it! Don't take my words for this one" -- Oscar Wilde

"Its OK to be racist once in a while as long as the environment doesn't get polluted" -- Kashyap R Purnanik

"Too many quotes spoil the blog" -- Anonymous.

Ever had the symptoms of profuse sweating, itching, weakness, fever, dizziness, headache, loss of appetite and extreme thirst? These are all the symptoms of the fact that you are in the city of Chennai. This is the land where ice-creams melt the instant they are taken out of the fridge, the land where match sticks burn by themselves when exposed to light, the land of the deep fried people, the land of Karnatik music, the land where the sun never sets (or at least its heat), the land where fish can survive out in the open because of the alimentary humidity. The following post is dedicated to my current city, the city of Chennai.

Chennai has a tropical ever-hot climate. It has three seasons summer, winter and the rainy season. Winter is usually between November 3rd and 5th. Rainy season follows it for the rest of the month. Although usually sunny and humid in summer, the weather packs special pleasent surprises that certain people desperately long for. A sunny day suddenly turns into a rainy one, the rain lasting for the rest of the day probably ruining your holiday. Once in a while beautiful cyclones surprise you by popping up and destroying lives and property. Some times, nature makes sure your laptops stop working because of overheating. The people of Chennai seem to enjoy these surprises and take life as it comes.

As mentioned earlier fish can survive out of water because they, just like people are always covered with a layer of sweat keeping their skin moist. Most mortals change their skin colour and darken within an year of living in Chennai, this phenomenon is called deep-frying. SPF-90 is the level of protection that is recommended by skin doctors to prevent the deep-frying.

The power consumption by cooling devices like the fan and the AC is humongous in Chennai as they are on through out the year. A lot of energy is however saved in cooking because, food materials can be directly cooked in the sun-light saving a lot of fuel.

The city has a lot of options for transportation like the deluxe buses, the bi-hourly train, the auto-rickshaws and the roads. The auto-rickshaw drivers are one of the most talented people in the country. They possess the unique ability of simulating the roads and the traffic in their heads to accurately pre-decide the fare of a trip. The rickshaw-meters that are almost never used for non-recreational purposes are so famous that the phrase has become an idiom. An example of its local usage being "Machcha this politician no? he is like an auto-rickshaw meter ya! Just ya totally useless only!" The buses are known for their comfort and cheap fares. The fares get cheaper a month before the election season to facilitate the easy movement of people to work for the elections.

The Tamil industry is one of the biggest film industries in the world, ranked at #148 in the world. The industries are known for its hot Tamil hunks (Azagiya Tamil magans). Since there are very few girls left in the wild, there aren't many popular local actresses. The industry has managed to solve the problem by importing actresses like Shriya and Genilia to name a few. Other steps include having a male actor perform a female role. Actor Kamal Hassan has managed to do some of those roles. The Tamil film industry has produced a few awesome movies like Yarukko Yaro Stepne.
Kamal Haasan (female role)
Imported actresses

Yaruko Yaro stepne

Chennai is known for a lot of tourist places. It is the home of the best tourist locations. The tourist locations include the marina beach, the crocodile park, the beautiful roads and the buildings. Since the marina beach has been polluted with all types of organic wastes such as maize skin, it has currently been closed for renovation. The crocodile park has over a thousand crocodiles lying around sleeping for around 23.8 hours a day. Not much work has been done to find out whether the crocodiles are indeed living ones. Some close sources claim that some of the crocodiles are made out of clay and hence the lack of movement. These parks are supposed to be the most thrilling places in Chennai. The other tourist location that Chennai boasts of, the roads of Chennai will be encountered on the way to these parks and hence no separate plans are required. The same goes for the buildings as well. Within a days time, a tourist can explore Chennai. The list of tourist locations usually also include Mahabalipuram in it. A few other places inside Chennai can similarly be added to the list of locations. Pondichery, Ooty and Bangalore (all inside Chennai) all of which are worth visiting. Chennai is known for its beautiful people and the tourists of Chennai contribute to around 98.6% of such people.

Over all Chennai is a very nice place to live in during the days November 3rd, 4th and 5th.

Friday, July 23, 2010

No to PJs

Say no to PJs!  Abolish PJs!  Play your part!

PJs* are a cheap source of humour from the common man trying to eliminate competition from talented comedians. What started out as just a joke is now threatening the very existence of all sorts of non-PJs. It all started in 1977 when a professor of IIT Madras from the DOMS department cracked a PJ just as a joke and people happened to laugh at it just to mock the joke. Since then PJs have started growing rapidly and today, 78% of all the jokes that are cracked are considered poor.

*(not to be confused with PH which is the measure of proton concentration in a solution on a negative log scale)

PJs are threatening the existence of other forms of Comedy such as Situational comedy, Sarcasm, Puns, Anecdotes, Dark humour, catch tales, irony, mocks, spoofs, practical jokes, dead baby jokes and so on. The governments of over 212 countries have signed a treaty to control the number of PJs cracked each day but in vain. A few organisations have been set up to revive the endangered forms of comedy. UNECRO (United Nations Endangered Comedy Revival Organisation) has been set up with Matt Groening as president to make sure the other forms of comedy don't go extinct.

You can do your part to control the rapid spreading of PJs
  • Protect yourself: When you know some one is about to crack a PJ, think about dying kittens and make yourself sad. This is one of the most effective forms of protections available.
  • Post laughter precaution: If you happen to laugh at a PJ, the best thing you can do is immediately insult the PJer to make sure he feels bad and doesn't crack more PJs.
  • Abstinence: The best way to handle PJs would be to abstain yourself from the need for laughter. Although difficult at first, its easy to master. Within a few years you will be an abstainee.
  • If you see a person cracking a PJ, go tell him about the dangers of PJs. Educate him of the rights and the wrongs. The greatest battle is the battle not fought but if he doesn't listen, he is all yours.
  • No matter what happens, do not laugh. Laughter may be the best medicine but laughing at a PJ could be the best medicine for the PJ as well. Laughter encourages people to crack more PJs.
  • Organise regular public gatherings where you can spread awareness about the negatives of PJs. You could start of in your campus or office and it can grow with time.
  • Scoring system: Whenever a person cracks a PJ, give him a -10. When he cracks a good joke, give him a +10. Maintain scores of each person you know in a spread sheet and keep them informed about their scores. The human tendency to improve himself will take care of the rest.
  • File a petition to make it illegal to crack a PJ. It would help a lot if there was a law preventing the crackage of PJs. A few petitions have been filed already, offer your support!

Remember, with great power comes great responsibility. The power is yours!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A day at the passport office. (Entire day)

It all started on 19th February June 1990, the day the author was officially born to his proud parents. His parents saw the cute baby and based on the skin colour immediately decided that he should go to the USA for higher studies so that he could be amongst people of the same colour. To go abroad for higher studies, the author needs to write the GRE for which he needs his passport as a primary ID. Funnily, the mess card from the 6th semester, the 12th standard library card, the Genilia D'Souza fan club membership card and even his facebook profile doesn't serve the purpose as a primary ID, all of which used to work perfectly fine everywhere else. The author had to apply for his passport and hence he writes this blog to tell the readers about the wonderful journey he took to get his passport.

Two days after the author was born
First of all the following details need to be given with proof to a passport officer before he approves your passport.

  • Date of birth
  • Current address
  • Educated/Uneducated
  • Student/Working
  • Smoker/Non-smoker
  • Alive/Dead
  • Terrorist/Non-terrorist

The above details have to be furnished. It may look simple to your eye at first but several complications do arise.

Usually your matriculation certificate will be good enough as a date of birth proof but if you happen to be unfortunately born to an evil mother who on purpose delayed your birth so that you are born after January 26th 1989, you will have to compulsorily furnish your birth certificate. This may also be simple but if you happen to be born to an evil father who thought you were too intelligent to stay home and made you join school a year early and also happened to change your date of birth given at your school later on, resulting in a conflict between your birth certificate and your matriculation certificate, things can get tricky.

In such cases, you may have to apply for a for a fresh issue of birth certificate making an embarrassing statement that you were born at your residence and your uneducated parents didn't know how to register your birth. All these happen only in hypothetical scenarios and no one really has to give much thought to it. The readers are however advised to make sure that their birth certificate is in English, birth certificates in any other language are considered to be that of a terrorist and immediately rejected. The author's sister has a unique hobby of changing her date of birth and she has managed to re-register herself in the office so many times that she contributes to 0.007% of the Indian population.

When the author went to the passport office to get his passport, he was asked to get his spouse's passport as an additional document for proof. The author tried explaining that he wasn't married yet and showed the officer an earlier post in this blog as a proof in vain. He had to wait for a year to turn 21 and be eligible and get a passport as proof but he decided to wait for the retarded officer to leave and he silently sneaked in to the next level.

For the address proof, you need one of the following
  • Electricity bill, water bill, telephone bill of a house in your name
  • Electricity bill, water bill, telephone bill of a house in your father's name + paternal identity proof
  • Bank pass book which shows at least 7 transactions in every month in the past one year.
    (Clearly a person who uses a bank at least 7 times a month is unlikely to be a terrorist.) Also terrorists don't live in the same place for more than a year and this fact has been used effectively to filter out terrorists. The applications of people (like my good friend Rikin) who haven't lived in the same place for over a year are immediately rejected because they are very likely to be terrorists.

For the paternal identity proof, one has to get his and his father's DNA sampled and a DNA comparison should be made and the relation should be established. The report should be attested by a gazetted/government officer. Since government officers are not usually corrupt, they are required to approve the report. Since the author hadn't sampled his DNA yet, he had to go to the bank and make a few transactions to raise the number and then get his passbook updated.

The passport system in India has been designed to minimise the number of terrorists who get passports. The current system will soon be changed to nullify the terrorist intake percentage to 0. The modification requires a passport applicant to have a valid passport in his name in order to apply for a passport. This will ensure that only non-terrorists will get a valid passport.[Proof by induction, base case left as exercise] All the readers are urged to get a passport as soon as possible before Arjun Singh makes sure the new system is implemented.

For Tatkal applications, one of the following documents are required.
  • Ration card
  • Arms licence
  • OBC/SC/ST certificate
  • Voter's identity cardProperty documents
  • Pension documents
  • Railway cards

Since 8 out of every 10 students have a ration card and the arms licence and 7 out of every 10 students have property documents and pension documents and since 47.2% of the students belong to OBC/SC/ST, the system is considered to be very student friendly. The passport system of India has been nominated as the youth icon and will probably be a successor to Orkut which won the title a few years ago.

The author thought the job was too easy for him and could be given to some one else and took the advice of his best friend (he has many) and approached a passport agent in Gandhi Bazaar. Passport agents save a lot of time by making the applicant stand in queue for several hours in front of the passport office and saves a lot of money by making the applicant pay them a hefty sum of Rs 600/- for the sole job of filling up the application form. [Meaning disambiguation: Agents save a lot of their own time and money]

In fact, one spends so much time in the queue that he makes a lot of friends. The author's number of friends on facebook has grown by 16% after his visits to the passport office. In fact, if one isn't already stuck, he can even get a girl friend or a dozen just by being with them as a support in their time of grief at the passport office.

Once inside the passport office one will have to go through 3 levels, each level tougher than the previous one. A set of passport officers have been sorted in the order of increasing optical power and have been divided into 3 groups, one with the least vision, the one with the best vision and the rest in the other. The one with the least vision does the first round of screening and the ones with the best vision do the last round of screening essentially on the same set of documents. People with poor vision take little time to process the documents and the ones with the best vision take a lot of time actually going through your telephone bill and may even question you about people who you frequently call.

Some innovative industrial engineering principles have been used in the office to boost productivity. The number of people processing documents at each step should depend on the speed of the step and hence the speed of each step is assigned as a weight to calculate the number of people at each step and hence the slowest step has the fewest people and the fastest step has the most number of people. An adobe flex based software which runs on Internet Explorer 6 which crashes every time a photograph of a guy with his eyes closed is taken. Thus such loss of productivity is balanced by the other measures taken to boost productivity.

Some of the emerging businesses because of this system are Passport agents as mentioned earlier, Passport trauma care centres to treat people who undergo trauma after their visit to the office, Passport office Cupids who play the game of match making at the passport office and finally facebook like-pages. A few friends of the author yesterday liked "standing in the passport office for several hours and not getting a token and coming back", "trying to fill passport application, first page done .... 5 minutes later slept zzz ..." and played facebook games like "what kind of a passport are you normal/tatkal/rejected?" and "What kind of a passport rejection will you face?" and so on.

Any way by the end of the day after 12 hours of hard work, the author got his ACK at the office and only a police officer dude stands between him and his passport. The master of pain has mastered pain and managed to keep his calm all thanks to a small tune that kept running in his head.

The readers are requested to comment if they feel the pain of the author or have been pained by the author at some point of time or hates it when the author uses "the author" instead of "I".

Friday, June 4, 2010

Welcome to the Jungle - IITM survival guide

This post is intended for freshers at IITM. If you are not a fresher, please do read it and also encourage freshers you know, to read this post so that it can help as many people as possible. This post is a survival guide for freshers at IIT Madras. The following are the various issues where freshers need orientation.

The rooms at IITM are just awesome, they are neatly tiled and well furnished. A cot, a chair, a spacious wardrobe, a computer table, book shelves completely fill up the 3.5'x5' room you get. 3.5 and 5.5 feet may seem small but the rooms are spacious as they are 14' high. The room can accommodate up to 4 people on chairs.
Watch-out:- There have been incidents where snakes have been seen at the windows of rooms. Only 68% of snake bites are fatal and hence this need not be a major concern.

The food in IITM is so awesome that it requires an entire post to describe it and hence here is the post that will answer all your queries. For people who don't like mess food, there are alternatives. The author doesn't know much about the quality of mess food these days because his lunch has mainly been in the fruit-shop consisting of water-melons.

The LAN gets cut at 12:00, that being the only source of your entertainment for freshers, the seniors of IITM considering their needs have arranged for an alternate way of entertainment. Every night seniors delightedly invite them to their rooms for the first few days when they miss normal life the most. Other seniors are also invited for the party. The seniors usually dance in a group or sing funny songs to entertain you. Sometimes they sing and dance at the same time for the song that freshers suggest. There are question answer rounds where seniors answer your questions. That is when you find out important things like their AIR, their room-wife and so on. Some times, educational videos involving biology, chemistry, physics etc are shown. At the end, you get to give a cute name to your senior for example instinct, duck, C-Pro, lighter, Juga, KP, monkey etc.
watch out:
Sleeping for less than 6 hours a day turns you into a zombie. Make sure you use your class-timings [refer paragraph below] wisely.

IITM is known for its huge classrooms and some classrooms can accommodate over 1000 people at a time. Such classrooms were built because the number of students coming in are rising every year. Currently the class strength is around 200 and the freshers end up making a lot of friends in their first year.
A few courses have remote learning programs where a professor teaches 3 huge classes at the same time. The prof stays and teaches in the centre room and a video of the prof is played in two neighbouring classes. Teachers assistants however are present everywhere looking out for students who talk to each other in class. They are then dealt with seriously.
Catch a seat early, you may have to with a girl otherwise. How is that bad? You will know soon.
Do not talk in the class, the professors give punishments and you will be made to kneel down before everyone.
95% attendance is compulsory. This means you can skip at most one class.

Usually IITians end up being in big companies and they sit in their cubicles in front of a computer with a cool chair. They don't realise the value of hard-work, hence there is a workshop that students can use to realise what hard work is all about. Most of the 'professors' at the workshop take it too seriously and insist the students on writing notes, reports and manuals. By the end of the course, the student will be a qualified construction worker, painter, miner, carpenter, electrician, moulder, musician, beautician, lift-boy and of course badly injured. All the things that you will ever need in your life are taught in the workshops.
Before hitting the nail, take your finger off it.
Do not make fun of the electrician in English, he does manage to understand.

Most of the evenings are spent playing sports. Wall climbing, bungee jumping are the most famous ones at IITM. Skating (pipe and rails), wave surfing, mountain climbing are less preferred. Sports are compulsory for freshers as 2 years of IIT preparation would have made them unfit. The sports are quite safe in IITM. Very few fatalities are reported every year.

Here are something you will have to really watch out for.
Inter-hostel violence:
Some IITians are really aggressive, they go to the extent of scolding a hostel's mother even if that didn't make sense to a sane guy. Usually fights break out in the hostel zone over who gets to win Shroeter although the winner of the fight doesn't really get anything except a victim or two. Many innocent people from Ganga were slaughtered by people from Tapti after they cheated in a wall-climbing match.
Carry a weapon with you always. You can convert to Sikhism, that helps. You can defend yourself with a Kripan.
Always attack first, do not defend!

As you may know now, IITM was established illegally on forest land. There are a wide range of creatures like monkeys, black-buck, mongoose, spotted deer and of course their predators. There are just 12 tigers left in the forest now and the numbers are fast declining but since the number of students have gone up in recent years, their chances of survival have improved.
Wear anti tiger masks, always travel in groups and always take an adult with you.

The girls in IITM the most beautiful ones I have ever seen. You will enjoy your stay at IITM. In fact you will have so many options that you will start singing "Kisko pyaar karoon, kaise pyaar karoon, woh bhi hai, yeh bhi hai, tu bhi hai, haye!". Although endangered, the numbers are rising each year. Writing any further about them will probably result in an unprovoked attack and hence the author stops at this stage.
The author has to watch out now, the wrath of the goddesses are about to follow him, enjoy! you are safe.

Apart from the above topics, there are a few more that are worth discussing like festivals (Shaastra, Saarang and some unknow management festival), the labs at IIT Madras, the library, Schroeter, Tech-soc, Lit-soc, Centre for Innovation, Sustainability network but the author just ran out of ink and hence won't be writing about any of the above insignificant topics.

No matter what happens, always be proud of yourself and remember, you have cleared the JEE and you now are an IITian, just like every one else there.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The great Indian Wedding

"Female girl wanted. Non-smoker, non-ugly." - Joey tribbiani

"Posting one of my quotes before every article is such a cliché." - Oscar Wilde

All characters in the following article are fictitious and any resemblance to any character dead/alive/zombie are accidental and should be ignored.

Marriages are usually made in heaven, but in some places like India, they are man-made.  There are many types of marriages: love marriages, forced marriages, child marriages, bought marriages, accidental marriages (like in Indian movies), same-gender marriages, inter-species marriage, multiple marriages.  The following article will explore an age old paradigm of an arranged marriage, its advantages, its disadvantages and its effects on Indian heritage, Indian mentality and probably climate change.

There was once a time in India where the father of a newly born child used to buy some cotton from the merchant across and the road and pay by making a marriage deal with him. The deal would enable the babies of the two parties to get married. Being just toddlers, unable to walk, the babies had to crawl around the sacred fire thrice to complete the marriage ritual to become a couple.

[ Two babies, getting ready for the ritual ]

In the time of kings, a king would summon a random set of people found on the road and organise a competition (wrestling, archery, wall climbing, rhyme recitation, lemon and spoon to name a few) and the princess of the land would be forcibly married off to the winner of the competition, a guy she just met. The kings in those days found high correlations between successful genes and victory in say, an air guitaring competition. In fact Sita was made to marry Rama after he won an archery competition. (source Tinkle)

[ Lemon and spoon competition for a person who probably swings both ways ]

In the author's father time, the author's father realised he was engaged only when a few of his friends called him up to congratulate him on getting engaged. His father then wrote a letter the following week informing him that his engagement had been conducted.

That was all in the past, things have changed a lot in the 21st century. The face of an arranged marriage has totally changed. The selection process now starts off when the parents of a girl and those of a boy go on a date. If there is a successful conversation between the two pairs, the selection goes to its next phase. In the next phase the parents go to a priest and seek his consent for the marriage. The priest then uses the birthdays of the two and analyses the positions of the sun, the moon and the stars at the time of birth and uses a few rules to decide whether the marriage can happen or not.

Here are some of the rules that are used
  • If a person is born in prime numbered months, he is a demon. If a person is born in a month number which is a fibonocci number, he is a human. In other cases, the person is a god.
  • A human boy can't marry a god girl, a demon boy can't marry a human girl, a human boy cannot marry a tiger and finally a god boy can't marry any girl.
  • If the couple can still marry, they go on to the next round.
  • The group of stars that are brightest, directly opposite to the sun on the date of birth of the boy and the girl are selected and the pattern is analysed.
  • There are 12 such patterns: goat, bull, crab, lion, fish, scorpion, chair, computer, nuclear reactor, merry-go-round, university campus, face with acne.
  • Common rules are now applied like lion eats goat, scorpion stings crab, bull eats table, bull gores goat, computer sits on a chair, fish doesn't know how to use a computer, nuclear reactor is not in the university campus and a face with acne beats everything.
  • If the guy's pattern beats the girl's pattern, they are into the next round.
  • Every digit in the girls birthday is now added up, same goes for the boy. They are fed as inputs to a random number generator as a seed. The random number modulo 36 is calculated. if the value is more than 18, they are made for each other. In the olden days, the random number generation was done manually, these days there are numerous softwares available in the market for the job.
  • Some times there is an extra round conducted in case of certain girls. If the girl did not get a sufficient score in the previous rounds, she is given extra tasks before being eligible to marry. Say for example marrying a tree. This is very common and happens even in royal families.
    Now that the major obstacle to a marriage has been dealt with, the parents of the guy and the girl can go on and get engaged and become a couple-couple. After the engagement, its finalised that the boy and the girl will get married. This is when the boy and the girl get to know about each other and get the licence to chat.

    Even in an arranged marriage, the symptoms of love start appearing within a fortnight of the arrangement of marriage. The boy and the girl start calling each other names like 'cutie', 'sweetie', 'meetie', 'jaanu' and so on to show affection. They spend hours video chatting, stealing away considerable amount of bandwidth which could be effectively utilised by another connection in the house probably by a sibling to download ebooks, ACM-papers and other educational content. They keep contacting each other every few hours at work and at home. When they don't get a reply and a time out is detected, they get angry/tense and sometimes even end up beating up their sibling, who by the way is very likely a nice guy who doesn't make fun of the situation. They make each other smile all the time and sometimes actually laugh. These according to experts are symptoms of love.

    Arranged marriages are better than love marriages because
    • one doesn't have to fall in love with some one and realise that the person is a married mother of two and even has a pet dog by the name Tommie. The unnecessary depression that is undergone, the amount of time that is wasted in recovery from the madness all alone, the additions of arbitrary girls to the friends list in one's facebook/twitter accounts to console oneself, can all be easily avoided in case of an arranged marriage because statistics show that in 96% of the cases, the bride is unmarried and in 99.97% of the cases the bride is not yet a mother.

    • One doesn't have to pack his luggage in a hurry, run away from home with the girl he loves, get married and start living in a hotel room where he unpacks his luggage to realise that he hasn't brought any of his underwear. The girl may probably get furious if she realises that her husband has been wearing the same underwear for over a week. Any attempts in explaining the similar system people follow in college campuses where clothes are changed once a fortnight will probably end the marriage in just 7 days.

    •  One doesn't have to fall in love with a girl whose face is as white as snow to only realise on the night after the marriage that its just the face that's as white as snow. Speaking of which, there is not much an arranged marriage can do about it but the author felt that bringing it up was important.

    The author interviewed a cricket players who has been through both arranged and love marriages and asked him about his views on marriage in India for which he had the following to say.

    "Bismillah ir-Rahman ir-Rahim, Alla ko shukr hai mera doosri Shaadhi huvi. My first marriage was love. I chat with the girl online, she show me pictures, I love her pictures. I ask her photo real? she said yes. 2 saal baad, Internet relay chat pe hamaari Shaadi huvi. Maine ek SMS bhi bejha tha 'Nikah Nikah Nikah' bolke. Shaadhi ke baad I find girl is not look good, I not love her any more. Love marriage is like cricket, one team is play well and win and other team is loose. Arrange marriage is not like that, is me toh dono family ek hota hai. In this case two nations becomes one. All of the people in my land love Sanya a lot and creates a website called in love for her."


    Friday, May 14, 2010

    Lan cuts at IITM

    Since IIT-JEE results will be out soon and the admissions will begin eventually, the author has decided to revamp his wall and share his two cents of information about the IITs and IITM in specific with a selfish motive of increasing the hit rate for this page. To the people who are new to this place, a quick introduction. The author is a Computer Science student at IITM in his final year who strives hard to maintain this blog to provide reliable information to the innocent students trying to learn about the new world (IITM) they are trying to enter.

    This post is about one of the policies that the administration of IITM has introduced to maximise productivity of the engineers that they manufacture. The LAN-cut law was passed in 2009 by the senate of IITM and was signed by Mani A, the chairman of CCW. According to the law, the institute LAN should be made dis-functional in IITM at the stroke of mid-night and should be switched on at two in the afternoon on all weekends. Why did Mani introduce such an arbitrary law in IITM? We will try to find out in this post.

    The SNet group of IITM is a student initiative established in June, 2009. According to the site, the immediate task was to save power as this would be appealing to everyone on campus in IITM. A survey and study followed in order to understand the power consumption pattern of the IITM campus. It was found that the peak hour of Internet usage was between 12:00AM and 1:00 AM. Students of IITM are used to completing their home works in that period of time and hence they download their e-books during that hour. The senate of IITM thought it would be a great save of some precious calories by cutting of LAN during that period and hence with no further thought, passed the above mentioned bill. Since some evil students have managed to crack the system and have obtained access to get Internet after 12:00 AM, the IITM senate now plans to cut off the power supply to the rooms as well. This will be implemented next summer according to some reliable sources. The mid-night canteen Olive-Kittchen as it is called now will change its timings to use the day light and will now be renamed 'mid-day express'.

    The IITM DOMS made an in depth method study and work measurement on the students and came up with a remarkable discovery that 6 to 7 hours of sleep could boost examination results by around 2%. This was only next to nutritious-tasty food (24%), on the list of things that could boost productivity in IITM. The senate of IITM flipped a coin and chose to make the students sleep between 12:00 AM and 7:00 AM instead of the other alternative. This they planned to achieve by cutting off the IITM LAN.

    Piracy is a major issue in the IITM LAN. The policy makers decided to decrease piracy by 20% by introducing LAN cuts in IITM. By cutting off the LAN at 12:00 AM, the administration of IITM has managed to cut the number of movie downloads by around 20% and hence has taken its step to fight piracy. Since students of IITM prefer to watch movies when they are fresh, i.e just after downloading, it is very unlikely that a student downloads a movie at 11:00 PM and watches it at 2:00 AM as the movie would have lost its freshness by then.

    The students of IITM love to play games during End-semester examination and end up missing their end-semester examinations. In fact, there have been over 5 such documented cases of students missing exams in IITM in the past decade, which is around 1 every 2 years. To top that, a student from the humanities department of IITM, wrote a paper in which he said he felt that students are more likely to miss an exam because of gaming than because of a night-out studying. Two of the members in the senate being from the humanities department of IITM, liked the excellent vocabulary used in the paper and decided to veto on LAN cuts.

    The Sting-team of IITM conducted raids in some hostels in IITM by breaking into the students rooms, to find out what the students had been up to and wrote a report on their findings. Although one of the people in the Sting-team of IITM who tried to raid the Sharavathi hostel, was mauled to death by angry girls, they managed to get information about the rest of hostels in IITM. According to the report on IITM, 86% of the students had signed into Google talk gadget in Gmail and 23% of them had chatted with a person of the opposite gender at least once that week. This finding about IITM hurt the religious sentiments of some of the people in Tamil Nadu where two people of the opposite gender speak to each other only after they are married. This was also one of the reasons why IIT has a 95% reservation for boys.

    The IPL chairman Lalit Modi wrote a secret letter to the dean of IITM where he expressed his interest to donate large sums of money if the students are forcefully made to watch IPL matches in the common room. Since You Tube streaming of IPL matches hadn't been introduced yet in 2009, the dean of IITM decided to cut off the LAN according to sources.

    Manual labour:
    There are rumours according to which, the IITM LAN goes through a single gateway where a person manually holds two pieces of wire together to keep them connected. Since he feels sleepy after 12:00 AM, the LAN at IITM has no option but to go down. The person holding the wires does not sleep on Saturdays and Sundays and that explains the curfew holding only on weekdays in IITM. Once in a while, the person at IITM feels itchy and scratches himself and during this period of time, he lets the wire go for a minute. This explains the frequent connection and disconnection of the Internet at IITM during the day time. The police academy in IITM is trying to teach the person to manually sniff packets that contain dirty things and dis-allow such packets to flow. Since people in Chennai sleep early in general, no person has been found who can replace this person at IITM. If you think you can handle the job, you are welcome at IITM.

    Nehru's goal:
    The dean on the 50th year anniversary of IITM remembered one of the founders of IITM and the goals that he had in mind while establishing IITM. He interpreted one of the quotes he made as "At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, IITM shall sleep as well." and hence possibly decided to cut LAN at IITM at 12:00 AM. Source - Advait Alai (my friend)

    Overheating of server:
    The temperature in Chennai is 44 degrees Celsius in the morning and drops to a very low value of 36 degrees Celsius in the night at IITM. Despite the night temperature being that low, the servers at IITM cannot handle these temperatures and hence have to be turned off in the night at 12:00 AM where studious students of IITM need it the most.

    The author went and met Mani A and asked him why the LAN was cut in IITM. "Who are you, what do you want? Show me your ID card? Who are you?" Mani said for over 15 minutes. Finally on giving a clear explanation, he said "see, 20 years ago, no LAN. Why are you wanting LAN now?"

    Now that we know the causes of LAN cuts in IITM, here are some of the effects.
    • The temperature of the IITM has decreased by 1 Kelvin because of the decrease in the electricity consumption.
    • There has been an overall increase in the number of students in the class room. The Probability and Random Processes class had an average of over 208 people in it as opposed to about 172 the previous year. Although critics say the increase in the student intake is the reason for the same, the dean of IITM has rubbished the claims and suspended the critic for making such criticism.
    • The performance of students has gone up by 2% as suggested by the DOMS IITM and a huge party was organised to celebrate it in April 2010.
    • The number of cases of pre-marital chatting in IITM has come down. The number will be brought down further by the administration by creating a separate campus for female students outside of IITM.
    • The number of visits by students to the library after mid-night has increased on average. Again critics claim the students visit the library for pre-marital meetings and again the dean of IITM has silenced the critics by debarring them.

    Whatever the reasons might be, the students of IITM are at a loss because of the inefficient utilisation of Bandwidth which otherwise would have been effectively utilised as the screen-shot below clearly shows.

    [DC++ in IITM Courtesy Mohammed Puli Iqbal]