Friday, November 23, 2007

The Last Supper at (172181 x 93611) pixel square resolution

Post Da Vinci Code the book and the movie, the Last Supper does not require much of an introduction. Many myths and stories surround this masterpiece. The only problem is - there are so many look-alikes, enhancements and fakes around that perhaps not many have seen the real thing (which of course, is not hanging at my neighborhood museum either ;-) ).

Thats when I bumped into a BBC online news piece saying they'd found musical notes hidden in the pattern of breads as arranged on the table. I don't know if that harmony of patterns (== music) was a deliberate act or a natural coincidence. How I wish Leonardo Da Vinci had a personal blog in his times ;-)

What really impressed me was this related website (the tech part :-)) Here's the link to the site we anyone can now see the original masterpiece in as much detail as a non-critical eye can perceive! and in an amazingly smooth flash interface.

Site: Heltadefinizone

(teaser site screen-shot)

They say, at 16 billion pixels, its the highest definition picture in the world! Here are the specs of the image:


Size: pixel (172181 x 93611)
Color depth: 16 bit per channel


May, 7 - 2007
Number of shots: 1677


CPU: 2 Two Quad Core AMD Opteron™ processors
16 Gigabyte RAM memory
2 Terabyte hard disk space

Photographic Equipment:

Camera: "Nikon D2Xs"
Lens: "AF-S Nikkor 600mm f/4D IF-ED II"
Real time acquisition Software: Nikon Camera Control Pro
Postprocessing and real time verification software: Nikon Capture NX

The technology partners for this project include AMD, Nikon, Clause, DiAugustini, iNet and powered by HP. Really impressive stuff. I'd recommend this site - this is research grade material.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Who can be an entrepreneur? Part I

Lately I've been reading on 'who' can be/ is an entrepreneur. Perhaps a better way to phrase it would be - what normally/ usually is the profile of a person who becomes an entrepreneur? Is it an 'in-the-mind' phenomenon? How much do external factors influence? What roles are played by family, upbringing, education, society and others?
And finally, which of these factors influence success? And what is 'success' in the first place?

Whew! quite a few questions in one breath and none new. I'm sure these have already been dissected and studied elsewhere to the minutest details - I'm also learning, my way. I'd first attempt to review some articles written by different people and analyze them and then maybe, over a period of time try and answer at least some of the questions I'd started with.

I'll start with this recent interesting article that appeared in the businessworld magazine written by none other than the Nobel laureate and founder of the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh - Muhammad Yunus.
Here is the link to the online version of the article.

Muhammad Yunus provided me a really wonderful insight - entrepreneurship is innate in almost every human being! Whats even more interesting about this 'gyan' is that it is a demonstrated fact and not a mere management-guru rhetoric. And demonstrated at a scale that should silence even the staunchest shadow critics - 90,000 'part time beggars' transformed into entrepreneurs with nothing more than 20$ worth of seed funding in each. Excellent!

Two things worth pondering
1. Definition of success. It shows success is relative. (I guess the happy beggar is in his own way as happy as Bill Gates - at least almost ;-) )

2. Incentive for the investor. I cannot but accept the fact that one common thread that runs through most entrepreunial stories - someone who acted as the catalyst - supplying either the push or the money and expecting something in return. All such catalysts also set their sights on 'returns' to be rightly expected. Will all investors be satisfied with the kind of returns that say, 'the Bangladesh experiment' brings, coupled with the higher level of micro-management that might be involved - I don't know. Again, the 'success' criterion on returns are different for different investors.

Thats all for now, part II continues this journal focusing on a different article.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Gphone , Android and the Open Handset Alliance

I hereby 'relay' announce 'the' Mobile Revolution - The quiet November Storm - as I hope this initiative will be known down the lane by future generations (and I thought iPhone was the coolest thing for the year)

What is really unnerving is the false sense of calm (say, viz. the Apple Way) that seems to accompany the announcement. This IS the most understated product announcement I have come across. Well, Google being Google does not really have to try hard ;-). Here's the link to the official google blog:
Official Google Blog: Where's my Gphone?

And if you've got time, you might as well check out this cute video on the Open Handset Alliance:

Here's a gist of what has/is to happen:

  • The 'Gphone' that the enthusiasts had speculated has arrived! albeit as quoted from their intro video "as a cool moniker for 'Android' ".
  • Android heralds the Open Handset Alliance. A consortium of the top stars in the mobile manufacturing ecosystem.
  • What this means to developers - An absolutely OPEN, FLEXIBLE and POWERFUL mobile software platform. WOW!
  • So if I now want to make a mobile phone exclusively for my dog which uses barks as dial commands and special barks as ringtones and runs a dating service for dogs in the locality - I should be able to.
  • There will be no such thing as a lowly limited third party app! Every app will be as good as a native app and anyone can add/remove modules to one's satisfaction.
  • So - move over Symbian, MS, iPhone and what not, make way for the Android. (Hmm..., sorry guys hold on a while longer - even the OHA SDK is slated to be released only by November 12 - the devices themselves... - we'll figure out along the way :-) )

And here's one introducing Android (which had been acquired by Google)

Three Cheers!