Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Cable and Wireless

Indian telecommunication industry is going at a pace today where we cannot afford to think what happened yesterday. All we can think about is what is happening today and what is going to happen tomorrow.

First telecommunication meant radio, television, then in its true sense, telephones, and then, mobile phones. Even today when we think of telecommunications, first thing that comes to our minds is a cellular phone. But the fact is that today telecommunication means so much that we cannot even visualize instantly. Telecommunicationhas gone back into wires, and more amount of data than ever before is in the air simultaneously, with the existing and coming wireless technologies.

With the BSNL IPTV already in the market, and Airtel and others all set to launch theirs (Don't know if any other operator has launched IPTV), the telecommunications field has already got a new face, one that combines the information-centric internet and environment-primary television.

Internet on the go is no more a dream either, for those who really want it. With the PCMCIA cards and beautiful 1-x CDMA modems coming to a price range affordable for the middle-class, you can now find students working on their net-connected-laptops, which was used to represent business class flyers by airlines not long ago.

And then comes the Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access, better known as Wi-Max. The current year has seen Wi-Max starts from BSNL, Aircel, VSNL, Bharti, Reliance, and Sify. Among these, Bharti has already deployed its services in eleven cities and is planning to expand, and a lesser known Aircel has invested $1 bn in the upcoming technology.

Now we shall talk about another facet of telecommunication. The direct-to-home (DTH) service, once under the monopoly of DishTV, and later extended to DDDirect+ and Tata Sky, is soon expected to see a number of new operators with Bharti, Reliance, Videocon, and Sun TV all set to jump into the market, starting a new competition altogether.

Interestingly, DTH is a segment where we find only one or two operators in a place almost anywhere in the world. But here, four new operators are planning to start their services in a short span of time, with 3 operators already existing. And actually, I still hope they'll all find their market in the world's second largest population.

That's when we say, It happens only in India.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Falling in love, Again...

It's been a number of times I have found myself falling in love. Don't know when it happened for the first time. But when I heard Deewana of Sonu Nigam, I was surely in love. In love with the voice, in love with the music. And then it kept on going. I fell in love again and again. With the same voices. With the music that touched my heart every time I listened to it. On my tape. In grand parties, on DJs. I fell in love with the music of Nadeem-Shravan. And Jatin-Lalit. And above all, of Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy. The music that makes me feel that love is permanent. Even today, I feel the Kal-ho-naa-ho-heartbeat as if its mine. I still love that song like anything. Feels like it'll remain with me for life. Because u never know what's gonna be there tomorrow.

There have been numerous things in music I have loved. Probably the first song I really 'loved' was 'Ye Dil' from the the remix album Pardes'98 I had. Then came the Deewana-Jaan-Yaad trio of Sonu Nigam, one by one. At that time I felt like he was the best singer, the one who could sing just anything. And truly speaking, I never thought there could be a period like the present scenario in the life of 'the great Sonu Nigam'. It was during my class X board exam, that I used to come back from the exam and switch on the TV, put on ETC, and wait for the song 'Mohabbat kabhi maine ki to nahi thi', as it was a regular on the 'ETC Maalgaadi' those days. I simply loved the song.

Then the time kept up its speed, and yet another favorite came up. It was 'Tum Bin' this time. The title and the 'Koi fariyaad' by Jagjit Singh were the two that still make me remind of the time when I tried to study regularly, putting my tape with me, in a seperate room on the first floor of our house. That was the time when I started buying cassettes regularly, and got almost one cassette a month. That was the time I realized I could believe the brand values, of Nadeem-Shravan, of Yashraj films, of Jatin-Lalit, of Sonu Nigam (in case of private albums) and so on, until I got one bad album from Nadeem-Shravan, called 'Jeena Sirf Mere Liye'. But overall, the results were very encouraging and for a person like me who wanted all the good music before others got it, bought just one cassette a month and bought only original cassettes, I think they couldn't be better, almost.

With the time, things kept on changing gradually. Never drastically or dramatically, just gradually. I loved lots of Hindi music. After contemporaries, I found myself liking Mohd Rafi's songs. Kishor Kumar was always one of the favorites. But after I got into college, I could get as much of the two as I wanted. Like never before. I had my laptop where I could keep all the music I liked. But even before that, when I had been in my first year with no computer of my own, there were several rooms in the hostel where I developed a liking for old songs. And during that one year I became a big fan of Shaan, always listening to his 'Bhool Ja and Other Hits'. Along with 'Phir Milenge'. These two have been of my most favorites. I simply loved them. Actually, those two are the albums that helped me a lot during my first year in the college.
I helped my seniors while they organised a Hindi Antakshari in our college festival, and the next year, in '07, I set all the content and questions of the same thing. That was one period that really told me a lot of things about music I didn't know. I went deep into the histories of musicians and singers. And sometimes, even directors and producers. I always liked to keep track of such things but that time I really gained something. After a long time there was something I had really worked hard with, and that was purely out of my interest. Out of my love for music. Hindi music. Atleast by that time.

In the meantime, my range kept increasing. First I was into contemporary music, then into 70s and 80s. And then came all the Ghazals of Jagjit Singh and now some by Ghulam Ali. And though I liked the old songs, I was not as much into them as I went since came the Moserbaer revolution. I thank Moserbaer a lot, not just for providing CDs for Rs 28, but also for starting a price race in the market which has brought down all the Rs.150 movies much below that. And since then I got a chance to understand the melodies of the old times far better. Today I have a small collection of around 20 movies that include classics such as Pyaasa of Gurudutt, the second costliest movie of collection (Rs.99), and Shri 420 and Barsaat of Raj Kapoor.

Seems I went off the topic. So I was talking of things and people and concepts I have fallen in love with. They always included Amitabh Bachchan, ever since I used to watch KBC. I was a fan of that simplicity. I simply loved that. But very recently, I got a chance to see the outer world of Shahrukh Khan, and even after having developed a soft corner for Shahrukh Khan ever since I saw 'Swades', I never before felt that I liked Shahrukh a lot. But after watching this CD, I felt he deserves what he has. I could relate to it when he told about the feelings he had whenever he sat at the stairs of some stage he had to perform at, just before the performance (If u didn't get the sentence, u can try to find the outer world of SRK).

And here comes the latest. I'm falling in love once again. This time its different. And I think I'm gonna enjoy this love very slowly. Because all my life, whenever I loved music and musicians, there was one thing in common. It was in Hindi always. But this time its different, this time its Enrique songs I'm really falling in love with. And that's why I'm gonna take time to understand it. Its just 3 songs of his I have heard properly, but it seems I'm gonna like him a lot. And in such cases, my predictions don't generally go wrong, as long as they're about myself. :)

Saturday, October 13, 2007

How do 70 yrs Look?

Its not been 22 complete years since I'm on the earth. And of the time, starting 6 or so years have been among the once I do not remember a thing about, of course. Just 16 years, and when I think about it, I feel like I have lived a lifetime. Thinking of it, I wonder how do people feel when they live lives of 50-60-70 years. There are number of things I can exactly recall from my past now, even as old as those of the very early '90s. And when I think of them and keep on thinking, it seems to be a never ending chain of thoughts.

I can still go back into the past when in 1991 when I was seeing our old home was being pulled down, to build a new one. I can remember the incidents from my school from class second and thereafter. I remember my friends in school, and teachers. And the prizes I got there. And the beatings. I can exactly tell u when a teacher who had to punish almost the entire class for not completing the homework using the 'kammach' on my hands first because I was just one line short of completion. And the freedom fighter who came to our school on Independence Day, when I was in class VII, and got so impressed with me hosting the program that he sent a book for me the next day.

There have been milestones. Academically (looo...oong back), professionally, personally. Small ones and big ones. Big ones looking small, and small ones looking big. There have been happy times and sad. And those when I didn't know how to feel, to be happy or sad. Probably one such biggest incident was the day when I got my job in TCS. I should have been happy for the job, but I was not. I was more sad than happy because my roommate had not been selected.
There have been people. My family. And friends. And not just them. A family of four people, my parents, my grandma, and me. And then my 8 year younger brother. And then an extension with my retired taauji with taaiji. And then only him, and then, only his room. The room, which had tenants from '91 to '96. First a fighting couple with two small children. And then a singing uncle with his wife and a little daughter for almost an year. The time when probably for the first timed a sad song touched me, probably because of a child's voice there. Aditya Narayan. From Akele hum Akele tum.

And then there happened Kota. Me, out of home. The times I even cried feeling home sick. Well, doesn't happen now. But still, among all the things, I never felt that homesickness was foolish. Kota came with a bunch of new friends. And a new life. A new freedom in life. And new responsibilities. I didn't perform extremely good or something, but the results were not bad. Finally I got a rank where I missed a favorite college of mine by a difference of 2 ranks and reached VIT. A place against which my mom had strict instructions. But I had to be here. Had to have all these people I live with. With the Mohalla. And girls among my friends, for the first time, ever since 1995. That was the last I had been friends with a girl before. Well, life in VIT was something I could write a book on. But there won't be many people reading it. Because college changes you a lot, but my life wasn't half as interesting as that of Chetan Bhagat.

Still, things changed like the roads of VIT. Well, those in my college understand. Its a place where a new road is constructed every two months, and an old one is given some new look almost every fortnight it seems. The person who used to wear a collar button always, almost my identity once, now walks on roads with sleeves up almost always. The view from outside changed. And so did the inner side. The person who used to be tensed like anything for the smallest thing, became the 'fark nahi padta' demon for many friends. And not to forget, a class topper of 12 years became a third man, just a few inches away from the boundary always, be it pass marks or qualifying attendance. Still, its exam tomorrow and having walked on roads for almost 2 hours, I am writing this stuff for more than an hour now.

Well, what I wonder is, there are thousands of such things in my mind, and more. This is what I have lived in these 22 years, or 16, by my calculation. Then how much are the coming years gonna bring me, and how would it look like when I would see my past, if I live past 50, 60 or more.

Probably there is just one answer to it. Keep watching!

Sunday, October 7, 2007


Passions. When filling the Orkut profile almost 3 yrs ago, for the first time I thought if I had any passions. Then I thought that I had a passion called music. Watching old movies is counted in such passions. So is reading poetry and Hindi novels, mostly by Premchand, or Sharatchandra. But then, suddenly I realized that passions should be specific. They ARE specific. Just you have to realize what are the things you do really passionately. It can be anything. Literally anything. And slowly I found out I had lot of such things associated with myself. Called passions.

I love music. Of course. But that is not what I should call passion. When I sing 'Alvida' all alone in my room, that is passion. Well, its not just the song. There are a number of such songs, having one thing in common. All of them being high pitched. Singing high pitched songs all alone in my room is one of my passions. On top priority ones.

Then comes walking. Well, that's another thing that gives me intense relief. Whenever there is some problem, something troubling me, and no one there. Its the best way out. All I need is time. And a road. I can walk miles without reason. And its not that I walk only if I have some problem. I walk even in my college campus. Just for the sake of walking. Alone. Until somebody is found, going in the same direction, or coming from the other. Of course I can change my direction if there is no place I am walking to.

Listening comes next. I do not know if I can put it in the list of passions. But I like to listen. To my friends, relatives, acquaintances, unknown people, just anybody. Hardly does it happen that I am not interested in listening to people. That too, generally if I have something else going on in my mind. Listening to my friends, and my maa, gives me a satisfaction. Some sort of happiness. I listen while sitting in front of the teller(of course), on phone, and even on messages, and emails. I love to do that. And it seems many of my friends find this to be one of my best qualities. (this paragraph was brought to you by Miya Mitthu himself)

And one of the top passions again can be an 'adda'. That's one thing I am gonna miss after my college. Talking everything we can, from the most useless girls of the college to burning problems of the country, from the history of Edwina Mountbetton to the geography of my house on google earth, I find our addas to be one of the really passionate things I discovered during my college. Adda's vary in the number of people. But it can start anywhere while more than two people are free in the night. In fact, after staying 3+ years in hostels, I can say that the hostel nights teach us, two is a company, three is an adda.

Now comes which my friends will most probably count if they're given to count paassions for me. Internet. Well, nowadays I m on a low, online just 8-10 hrs in a week. But those were the days, and those days can come any day, whenever I get a free all night internet connection; the days when I used to be online continuously for 6-6 hrs in a day. Rather in night. I have been online for continuous 8 hrs during the night, just because the official night is that much only, when we used to get free internet. I can, and love to, surf Orkut, for hours and hours and hours. Having been a member for more than 3 years, with more than 400 friends in my friends' list, I still crave for more Orkut. I love to surf various communities, different people's profiles, and sometimes praise or advise them too, though I try to control it most of the time in case of unknown people.

And last one, the one many are afraid of, or pretend to be. Cracking PJs. My poor jokes, my one liners, my venom, what is that they are not called. But I love it. I cannot stand people's talks for long without PJs. Until they're too serious for PJs. And actually, it seems that in my Mohalla, my PJs are my identity.

Well, at times, having a coffee can be one of the most passionate things for me. Even sugar is not required. In fact, it seems I'd like dark chocolate a lot, which I haven't tried much yet. In short, it depends on your personality what passions you have, and your passions make your personality. So if you haven't found out your real passions, go for it.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

18 years gone...

Well, its been a long long time. 18 and a half years. Since I have been going to class. Every morning, or afternoon. In different shifts. For different courses. Learning entirely different things. Sometimes languages. Sometimes maths. For admission, for job, for life. And suddenly I realized a day ago that there will be no more classes after 4 weeks. The practice I have been through for 6-8 hrs a day, 200 days a year, for last 18 and a half yrs, ever since 1989, when I joined Public Montessorie School as a lower KG student. 7 yrs there, and joined MDS Inter college in 1996. again 7 yrs, and a coaching of one yr at Kota. And past 3 and half years in Vellore. And now, the journey comes to a halt. A six months project in the next semester, (no classes of course) and I'll be a guy going to office. Yup, got something. A few classes for training in the company. One last patch still remains. But anyhow, now I'm at a junction in my life. The life we lived in our hostels, is slowly coming to an end. The last CAM (the reasonably-hyped internal exams), the last term-end exams, and then half of us will not be in the college. Thus, the life will start to scatter here only. And after six months..... Well, I do not want to think. But I cannot stop thinking either.

Well, these 18 yrs (change the number according to your schooling) have given us a lot. Those 6 hrs outside homes everyday have taught us more than the remaining 18 hrs at home. I hope that's not the case with college life, though.

And what is next in our future, really nobody knows. We do not know where we will be going to live. And how will the new life be. How shall we adjust there. Probably I would say the way we did here. But truly speaking, its not going to be like that. Workplaces cannot be colleges. Nor are they expected to be. Actually, I do not know what I want from life now. In fact, today I do not know where I belong. The home I have lived in, with my parents, for 17 yrs, or the hostel I stay in, or the place I will be going to. It seems I am lost. Seems like I should listen to 'Musafir hoon yaaron, na ghar hai na thikana'.
Anyways, the best I can do for now is live with peace for the next six months in my college itself, enjoy myself as much as possible, and leave the rest to Him.