Thursday, June 30, 2022

Open House 30 Jun 7pm IST online: Heritage Science and Technology: A new Dept. and Masters program at IIT Hyd

definitely a worthwhile effort.

they have an open house today: please circulate this information so that any questions may be answered.

!!! Ask us anything !!!
Online MTech / PGD Heritage Science & Technology
HST@IITH - Talk to the faculty to understand the program better
30th June - 19.00 to 20.00 IST
Link: Open house - call -

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Mohan Raghavan <>
Date: Thu, Jun 23, 2022 at 11:21 AM
Subject: Heritage Science and Technology: A new Dept. and Masters program at IIT Hyd

Dear Friends,
         I am seeking your help in getting word around regarding a related initiative at IIT-Hyderabad which we have started recently. 
          We are all invested in preserving and growing our shared Heritage. We went with the belief that a great way to preserve Heritage is to build and strengthen lives and livelihoods around living Heritage - such as temples, Yoga, Ayurveda, Music, Dance, Temples and the like. In order to use S&T to support and help the Heritage industry we have recently started a Dept. of HHeritage Science and Technology at IIT Hyderabad ( We are also offering an online Masters in Heritage Science and Technology ( 
         Request your blessings and good wishes for this project and your help in getting the word around about this program. We believe this is the first such program at an IIT  and will go a long way in mainstreaming academic studies on Indic Heritage matters.  


Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Quick notes: Brain-scale AI | Surveillance state...

  • China builds brain-scale AI model using ExaFLOPS supercomputer: The work to create an AI training model with 174 trillion parameters is gargantuan.

  • Dystopia : China’s surveillance state is growing. Here’s how.

  • 24-hour Solar power: China tests technology that could beam solar power from space to Earth

  • Sperm count collapse: Research into falling sperm counts finds alarming levels of chemicals in male urine samples. . . . . . . . . Plastic Planet

  • So rice! Malayalis off paddy fields, Bengal workers step in. Migrant workers charge much less than what local labourers charge.

  • Kalaripayattu: India's martial art and the world's oldest

  • Lethal accuracy, drone assisted: Discover Russian artillery tactic to destroy Ukrainian M777 howitzers using drones

  • Replacing Kurds with Arabs: Erdogan trains his sights on Kurdish northern Syria

  • Doing nothing can be harder than doing anything: How to Do Nothing is not about inaction, staring at the ceiling or relocating to an isolated cabin on the beach or the hills; rather the contrary. It is an active “act of resistance”, an “action plan”, skewed to free people from the shackles of the attention economy and vulgar capitalism.

    It is indeed high time to drop off the high-tech social-engineering assembly line, away from the herd mentality. Technology, like money, is a “useful servant but a bad master”.

    You cannot 'do' meditation:

Friday, June 24, 2022

the end of the line for the 'liberal international rules-based order'

It is essentially a post-WW-II mechanism to perpetuate rule of the victors in that conflict, giving them a free pass in world affairs for as long as possible

Monday, June 20, 2022

Quick notes: Transit corridor | EV landscape...

  • North-South Transit Corridor: Iran tests new trade corridor to ship Russian goods to India and other Asian markets. The plan will eventually build a railroad line that can transfer goods arriving at Iranian Caspian Sea ports to the southeastern port of Chabahar.

  • Rise of Chinese EVs rattles Europe: Batteries are the pillar of China’s competitive advantage. China is also pushing the frontier of EV software. Today, some of China’s largest tech companies provide the digital backbone of China’s electric vehicles.

    Once a non-entity in global autos, China is now a threat to the Germans

  • China-plus-One strategy: Why more European firms are choosing Vietnam over China.. "(However) Vietnam is not yet on par with China as far as education level, skilled labor and infrastructure, and logistics are concerned.". . . . . . same with India

  • Nalanda: India's ancient university rising from the ashes

  • "Agnipath": Govt announces 4-year military recruitment scheme.

    Colonel Anil Athale (retd): Military needs soldiers, not contract labour

    'Indian soldier costs minimum, delivers maximum': "Experience matters in soldiering and a contractual soldier may not have the stomach to take risks. Soldiers know that their officer will move ahead and they behind him. The officer knows that his men will never let him down. This feeling of camaraderie and trust comes after years of training in the unit".

    भारतीय सेना को क्या “Kindergarten Army” बनाना है?

    India recruits female sailors for its Navy

  • Jalandhar diocese: Pro-nun group appeals to Pope not to reinstate Bishop Franco

  • Polluted air cuts life expectancy: India's PM2.5 levels exceed WHO guidelines by 10-fold. About 51 crore people living in north India are on track to lose 7.6 years of their life if the current air pollution levels persist. One country that has seen major improvements is China.

  • Zeer pots: The coolest way to keep food cold without refrigeration

  • Ahmedabad Heat Action Plan: 2020 Ashden Award Winner

  • 'Toxic for teenage girls': Facebook hit with 8 lawsuits for exploiting young people for profit.

  • Energy hog: Bitcoin can (theoretically) handle 7 transaction per second, at the cost of 2,500 kWh (an average home uses about 1,000 kWh per month)

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Quick notes: Tech heist | India's burden...

  • China stole the Kohinoor of advanced semiconductor tech: One engineer stole all 2 million lines of source code for critical ASML software. “It’s not an accident. It’s not anything else. But it is a plot to get technology for the Chinese govt.”

    TSMC coveted by the CCP: "We must seize TSMC" urges senior Chinese economist

    Semiconductor subsidies: Intel Germany mega site gets €6.8bn in European Chips Act funding

  • Global food crisis is India's burden: G-7 wants to control India's food stocks. “At the end of the day they (India) are making matters worse. Worse for the most vulnerable countries”: EU Executive Vice President.

    USA would rather convert corn to ethanol for fuel. Germany would rather divert barley for beer. France won't curtail its wine. But India restricting exports for the food security of its own population is a "threat to vulnerable countries!"

  • Cycling to Work in Bengaluru: Several tech companies are offering parking amenities and incentives to employees for commuting via #CycleToWork campaign. However, cycling for many, is still a daredevil task.

  • Anand Malligavad's Miyawaki forest in Bengaluru: “The aim is to plant about 2 lakh saplings and make it the Miyawaki forest model of Japan. We also have hired people to water the saplings and take care of them". Anand, a mechanical engineer, was widely acclaimed for successfully rejuvenatiing lakes around Bengaluru.

  • Dr K Sudheendran: Kerala doctor's ‘sapling treatment’ turns Adimaly green. From erecting fences to watering the plants occasionally, Sudheendran himself cares for the plants until they attain maturity

  • pSeculars versus Mother nature in Kerala: KKKaangress, CPM rage against Supreme Court directive for eco-sensitive zone (ESZ) around wildlife sanctuaries.

  • A new low: India is last in environmental performance index for 2022 . “This is fundamentally a question of the development model and pathways we want to pursue and the lifestyles that we as citizens want to adopt. Destroying the environment and nature in the name of ‘development’ should no longer be the path, whatever might be the justification".

  • Running out of black gold: Global soil shortage. The impact of soil degradation could total $23 trillion in losses of food, ecosystem services and income worldwide by 2050

  • 'Chadariya Jheeni Re Jheeni': Mukhtiyar Ali

Tuesday, June 07, 2022

Quick notes: Food vs fuel | Europe's problems...

  • Food vs. fuel: Biden chooses ethanol interests in the face of global food shortages. . . . . . rules for thee, not for me

  • Europe whining: "Europe has to grow out of the mindset that its problems are the world's problems but the world's problems are not Europe's problems. It has been singularly silent on many things which were happening, for example in Asia, you could ask why would anybody trust Europe on anything at all".

  • Indo-Pacific Economic Framework: Two years after walking out of RCEP, the China-centric free trade pact, India is embracing the chance to become a founding member of another grouping — this one led by the U.S. "A major flaw of RCEP was the inclusion of China. China agrees to everything on paper, but has no compunctions about evading rules in practice. IPEF is very attractive to India because it includes east & southeast Asian countries but excludes China".

  • You can be both "cool" and sober: Young women are using Instagram to show others you can be both "cool" and sober. Retired Party Girl and No Booze Babes are online communities for those rethinking their relationship to alcohol. Alcohol alternatives, like kava seltzers and CBD drinks, are getting popular on the heels of this sober curious movement.

  • Plastic pollution is ubiquitous: Indian elephants are getting too much plastic in their diets. Plastic comprised 85 percent of the waste found in the elephant dung from Kotdwar. The bulk of this came from food containers and cutlery, followed by plastic bags and packaging.

  • Basant in Georgia: Russians singing Om Namo Namah Shivaya

  • Sridhar Vembu brings clarity:

  • Make the most of it: Japan to enable fighter jet and missile exports to 12 nations. India, Australia, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines among destinations... "Deterrence against China".

  • Lessons learnt: Nepal has become increasingly wary of China's expansive Belt and Road Initiative amid Sri Lanka's financial collapse, fresh loans from the US and a shift towards India.

  • RISC-V: Intel to explore RISC-V architecture for Zettascale Supercomputers

  • Gravitricity: Gravity "batteries" for energy storage?

  • Big-pharma's big mystery: Why boosted Americans seem to be getting more COVID-19 infections.

Sunday, June 05, 2022

the quad is dead; china is rampaging in asia; and all this leaves india exposed.

This is alarming, as the 'fourth island chain' is basically the 'String of Pearls' intended to strangle India and tie it down in the so-called 'South Asia', by negating its undoubted geographic advantage of straddling the sea lanes in the Indian Ocean. The Chinese submarine pen at Hainan in the South China Sea, with easy access to the Indian Ocean via the Straits of Malacca, is already a threat to Indian interests and blue-water navy aspirations. 

In addition, China is currently in the middle of a furious ship-building frenzy, so they will also have surface ships, including aircraft carriers, capable of projecting force a long way into the Indian Ocean. Just as they have done in the Himalayas, and the South China Sea, China is using 'below-the-threshold of war' tactics to build up its capability until one day its foes are forced to submit. Degringolade.

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Quick notes: Battery fires | Renewable power...

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

harvard thinks india is not in asia, but the middle east

this is from the harvard business school. those east coast Dem types honestly think india is either in africa or in the middle east. asia? never! this is why biden finds it hard to accept india in the quad, and he goes around talking about aukus and jaukus. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

two brutal articles about american screwups

from tablet magazine

frankly, these sound scary. in how much these guys are capable ot screwing themselves up, and the rest of the world as well

tablet mag has turned into a good read, with a solid jewish perspective

Monday, May 23, 2022

Quick notes: Tibet policy | Battle tank...

  • India's Tibet policy: It is not that India did not have excellent strategic thinkers at the time, but Nehru decided not to use their competence. Tibet would never be discussed as a result. Today, one priority for Delhi is to have an in-depth discussion with Dharamsala as soon as possible.

  • Russian weaponry: This war has revealed a major design flaw, for instance, in the T-72 main battle tank -- the wrong placement of the ammo storage compartment under the crew cupola, which tends to blow up with the first guided anti-tank munition hit midship.

    It is a matter of grave concern to the Indian armoured forces featuring the T-72. Maybe, this will finally convince the army headquarters to take ownership of the indigenous Arjun MBT (which handily beat the Russian T-90 and T-72 tanks in test trials). If the Ukraine crisis proves anything it is for the Indian military to 'Buy Indian'.

  • Farm machinery exacting heavy toll on soil: In soil that has been squashed by heavy weight of farm machinery, air is forced out and the soil becomes compacted, leading to flooding and poor harvests. "Compaction can happen within a few seconds when we drive on the soil, but it can take decades for that soil to recover".

  • Machine learning for farming applications: John Deere's autonomous tractor will usher in a new era of farming. Farmers are losing control of their machines and accuse John Deere of creating a monopoly in farm equipment manufacturing.

  • Netflix losing its grip: Cancellations rise among long-standing subscribers

  • Raag Jhinjhoti: Shashwati Mandal

  • When Shiva appears, Chandala disappears: The disappearance of the Chandala therefore marks the disappearance of the whole ideas he represented. The ‘meaningful nonsense’ of the Chandala of the local myth is thus changed — while the former questions the caste system, the changed version makes such an illusion, but behind it, it in fact seeks to revitalise and legitimise caste.

  • Recipe for disaster: English-medium in rural primary = recipe for complete destruction of Indian talent.

  • Cities markedly warmer than the countryside: "Heat islands" in and near Delhi, with nighttime temps up to 102° (40°F hotter than nearby fields).

  • But wait, there's a solution: Shade from street trees reduced surface temperatures by an average of 12°C. Concrete surfaces shaded permanently by a bank of trees were cooled by up to 20°C in the summer.