Friday, October 26, 2007

Prism



Prism is a new product from the Mozilla Lab. Now-a-days there is a drift towards web apps and many usable functionalities are getting available via web apps. But desktop computing still holds its forte thanks to the rich user experience it can deliver.
Prism combines the best of both worlds. I still have to give it a try, but it seems good.
Prism Project Link

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Chang'e - 1 Launched

Today China launched its first moon orbiter from Xichang space centre. The mission named as Chang'e-1 is to be of one year duration and is an exploration mission. Chang'e is the name of a Chinese goddess who flew to the moon. It is to enter the lunar orbit in early November and become operational by the end of November. Chang'e-1 is to take snaps of lunar surface and use the pics to analyze the elements on Lunar surface and take measurements of lunar surfaces.
Chinese Lunar Exploration program conducted by China National Space Administration (CNSA) is to be done in 3 stages
stage1:- Chang'e-1 : Lunar Orbiting (2007)
stage2:- Chang'e-2 : Lunar Surface Landing (2008-09)
stage3:- Chang'e-3 : Lunar Sample Returning (2012-17)
It has to be followed by Manned Lunar Missions around 2020.
As of now congrats to CNSA for successful launch of Chang'e-1.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Oriya eMagazine : Aahwaan

Dr Jyoti Prasad Pattnaik has recently started an eMagazine in Oriya and I think every Oriya should give it a try.
Aahwaan
Related Blog
I would also like all Oriyas to spread the news.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

A date with Python :D





Python Batteries

These days I dont have much work at office. So I am spending my time with Python and its numerous batteries. The following is a compiled list of batteries with links. The list is precise and contains the batteries that are useful to me. After going through the list, can you guess what I do with Python ?

Python Core
Python Imaging Library (PIL)
IPython
NymPy
SciPy
Matplotlib
vPython
wxPython

Friday, October 12, 2007

Smart Googling

Google has become a part and parcel of my life. Now a days I hardly type a web url, I just google. If I want to visit IIM Ahmedabad's site, then I will just google for IIM Ahmedabad and follow the first search result. If I face any problem in development, then I will just use google.
But there is always a best/ smart way of doing each and everything. We can search via google smartly and have quite refined result(i.e. not simply more, but less yet more relevant results). The given link will lead you to an article on smart googling
Link to the Article

P.S. Google for "Soubhagya Ranjan Nayak" [:)]

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

The cost vis-a-vis outcome of Innovation

Aerospace research projects especially space R&D projects have often been criticised for their heavy requirements both in terms of money/resources and manpower. Most often the space programs are being viewed as white elephants, which have hardly any use other than boasting the superiority of a nation . To a layman spending huge amount of money for a Mars mission hardly makes any sense. But if he calculates the overall outcome of a Mars mission, he has to rethink his judgement. The following link enlists some of the technologies which are developed for aerospace projects and have made their way to our day-to-day lives. Space stuff we use in daily life
There is a common saying that necessity is the mother of all inventions. But often an invention has its use in other areas as well. To solve a problem you develop a technique and that very technique can be employed to solve some similar problems. The problems might have been unsolved or being solved by using a less efficient technique. Internet was never developed to make us more informed or connected. Arpanet(the predecessor of Internet) was basically a defense project, but the solution has been successfully employed in other arenas.
As enlisted in the above article we have got joystick, microprocessor, micro-controller, ear thermometer, sportswear, smoke detectors, freeze-dried meals as the outcome of Aerospace R&D.
The basic point is that it is really unfair to chock the inputs to R&D and Innovation. We, the human race should move ahead with our space research and development programs, without caring too much for the immediate outcomes. In the long run we will definitely get rich dividends.

Monday, October 1, 2007

50 Years of Sputnik Launch

4th October,1957 is a very important date in the history of humanity. On that day Soviet Union successfully launched Sputnik-I. Sputnik-I was world's first artificial satellite.

Sputnik



Sputnik-I had a very simple design. It was basically a sphere of 585mm dia, made of polished Aluminum alloy. Four antennas of length between 2.4m and 2.9m were attached to the sphere. It had been polished to have a highly reflecting surface, so that one could view it from the earth in naked eye. It carried 2 radio transmitters. The radio signal was used to gather information regarding the electron density of the ionosphere. But more importantly the signal was to announce that the superiority of the Soviet Science and Technology.

The outcome of the Sputnik I launch was something that hardly anybody had anticipated. It marked the start of the space race between the cold-war rivals US and the USSR. It also marked the beginning of the space age. The consequent space race resulted in a great deal of scientific and technological developments. The launch was undoubtedly one of the great milestones in the history of humanity.

Sergei Korelov and R-7





The space scientists of the Soviet Union were to be given the credit of this launch, not for the satellite, but for the rocket (R-7) that carried Sputnik-I to space. But there was one scientist Sergei Korelov, who was to be regarded as the man behind this entire project. Korelov was not only a brilliant engineer, but also an efficient manager and a great visionary. He could clearly envision the potential of R-7 . R-7 was mainly built to carry Soviet nuclear war-heads to US. Korelov could also imagine the importance and usability of space to the modern human society. Sergei Korelov is regarded as the Father of Soviet Space Mission.

It has been 50 years since the launch of Sputnik-I. Though USSR was the first to reach the moon, it was US which was first to have manned lunar missions. Soviet Union is now gone and there is superiority of the US(NASA) in the space arena. NASA has been successful in sending robotic probes to Mars and space vehicles to the outskirts of the solar system. But still Sputnik-I will always remain special for all the Aerospace evangelists.