Muktha Balaga

Archive for ಫೆಬ್ರವರಿ 2007

Before software can be reusable; it first has to be usable.
–Ralph Johnson

Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.
–Fred Brooks
Theory is when you know something, but it doesn’t work. Practice is when something works, but you don’t know why it works. Programmers combine theory and practice: Nothing works and they don’t know why.
It’s hard enough to find an error in your code when you’re looking for it; it’s even harder when you’ve assumed your code is error-free.
-Steve McConnell Code Complete If builders built buildings the way programmers wrote programs, then the first woodpecker that came along would destroy civilization.
-Gerald Weinberg

The Six Phases of a Project:
Search for the Guilty
Punishment of the Innocent
Praise for non-participants
Good code is its own best documentation. As you’re about to add a comment, Ask yourself, ‘How can I improve the code so that this comment isn’t needed?’ Improve the code and then document it to make it even clearer.
–Steve McConnell Code Complete

The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.
–Bertrand Russell

No matter how slick (efficient) the demo is in rehearsal, when you do it in front of a live audience the probability of a flawless presentation is inversely proportional to the number of people watching, raised to the power of the amount of money involved.

One of the main causes of the fall of the
Roman Empire was that, lacking zero, they had no way to indicate successful termination of their C programs.
–Robert Firth

Fifty years of programming language research and we end up with C++?
–Richard A. O’Keefe

C programmers never die. They are just cast into void.

If debugging is the process of removing bugs, then programming must be the process of putting them in.
–Edsger Dijkstra

You can either have software quality or you can have pointer arithmetic, but you cannot have both at the same time.
–(Bertrand Meyer)

There are two ways to write error-free programs; only the third works.
–Alan J. Perlis

Measuring programming progress by lines of code is like measuring aircraft building progress by weight.
–Bill Gates

The first 90% of the code accounts for the first 90% of the development time. The remaining 10% of the code accounts for the other 90% of the development time.
–Tom Cargill

Programmers are in a race with the Universe to create bigger and better idiot-proof programs, while the Universe is trying to create bigger and better idiots. So far the Universe is winning.

As soon as we started programming, we found to our surprise that it wasn’t as easy to get programs right as we had thought. Debugging had to be discovered. I can remember the exact instant when I realized that a large part of my life from then on was going to be spent in finding mistakes in my own programs.
–Maurice Wilkes discovers debugging, 1949

I did say something along the lines of “C makes it easy to shoot yourself in the foot; C++ makes it harder, but when you do, it blows your whole leg off.”
–Bjarne Stroustrup

It has been said that the great scientific disciplines are examples of giants standing on the shoulders of other giants. It has also been said that the software industry is an example of midgets standing on the toes of other midgets.
–Alan Cooper About Face

Computers are useless. They can only give you answers.
–Pablo Picasso

If the code and the comments disagree, then both are probably wrong.
–attributed to Norm Schryer

Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.
–Will Rogers

Einstein argued that there must be simplified explanations of nature, because God is not capricious or arbitrary. No such faith comforts the software engineer.
–Fred Brooks, Jr.

As we said in the preface to the first edition, C “wears well as one’s experience with it grows.” With a decade more experience, we still feel that way.
–Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie

Simplicity is a prerequisite for reliability
 –Edsger W.Dijkstra

I’ve finally learned what “upward compatible” means. It means we get to keep all our old mistakes.
–Dennie van Tassel
Rules of Optimization:
Rule 1: Don’t do it.
Rule 2 (for experts only): Don’t do it yet.
–M.A. Jackson

Most software today is very much like an Egyptian pyramid with millions of bricks piled on top of each other, with no structural integrity, but just done by brute force and thousands of slaves.
–Alan Kay

every program has (at least) two purposes: the one for which it was written, and another for which it wasn’t.
–Alan J. Perlis
Technology is dominated by two types of people: Those who understand what they do not manage. Those who manage what they do not understand.
–Putt’s Law

Copy and paste is a design error
–David Parnas

Any code of your own that you haven’t looked at for six or more months might as well have been written by someone else.
–Eagleson’s law

The primary duty of an exception handler is to get the error out of the lap of the programmer and into the surprised face of the user. Provided you keep this cardinal rule in mind, you can’t go far wrong.
–Verity Stob

 FootNote – I received this as en Email Forward, Hope many of you will like it.– Veena

ಇವತ್ತು ಬೆಳಂಬೆಳ್ಳಗ್ಗೆ ಏಳೋ ಗೋಳ್ ಇರ್ಲಿಲ್ಲ….. ಹೊರಗಡೆ ಸದ್ದಿಲ್ಲ, ಗದ್ದಲ ಇಲ್ಲ.. ನಿಜ ಹೇಳಬೇಕು ಅಂದ್ರೆ ಭಾನುವಾರ ಕೂಡ ಹೀಗಿರಲ್ಲ….. ಆ ದಿನ ಕೂಡ ಜನ ಎಲ್ಲಾದ್ರು ಹೋಗೊಕ್ಕೆ ಸಿದ್ದರಾಗ್ತಿರ್ತಾರೆ!….

ಅದಕ್ಕೆ ಅನ್ನಿಸುತ್ತೆ, ೨೦೦ ವರ್ಷದ ಹಿಂದಿನ ಹಿರಿಯರು ಸದಾ ಸುಖಿಗಳು… ಅವರು ದೂರದ ಊರಿನ ದೇವಸ್ಥಾನಗಳಿಗೆ ನಡೆದೇ ಹೋಗ್ತಿದ್ರಂತೆ.. ಇವತ್ತು ನಮ್ಮ ಬ್ಲಾಗ್ ಜನ ಕೂಡ ಎಲ್ಲ ಮನೇಲಿ ಆರಾಮ್ವಾಗಿ ಇದ್ದಾರೆ. ಸಧ್ಯ ಬಿ.ಎಸ್.ಎನ್.ಎಲ್ ನವರು ಇಂಟರ್ ನೆಟ್ ಸರ್ವಿಸ್ ಬಂದ್ ಮಾಡ್ಲಿಲ್ವಲ್ಲ….

ಶಾಂತಿಯುತ ಬಂದ್ ಇದಾಗಲಿ. ಇಲ್ಲಿದೆ ನೋಡಿ  ಹೋದ ಸಲದ ಬಂದ್ ವಿವರ…ಮತ್ತು ನನ್ನ ಅನುಭವ….

–ವೀಣಾ ಶಿವಣ್ಣ.Bangalore Otherwise

Majestic bundh!

B G L Swamy 


B. G. L. Swamy (Kannada: ಬಿ.ಜಿ.ಎಲ್. ಸ್ವಾಮಿ)(1918-1979) was an eminent Indian botanist and Kannada writer; He served as professor and head of the department of Botany and as Principal of Presidency College, Chennai. He is the son of D. V. Gundappa (Kannada: ಡಿ.ವಿ. ಗುಂಡಪ್ಪ), one of the most respected Indian writers and philosophers. He is been my favorite author ever since I started reading his works and greatly inspired by his teaching techniques in Botany and amount of research he has done in the field of botany. His humorous style of writing has always made me read his books again and again… many many times. “ Panchakalashagopura “ one of his  books written as a tribute to his masters who taught him  in Central college, Bangalore . There’s a fine description of the college, Lecturers, departments , the campus, and  “kannada Sangha” , This book  contains  details of TS VenkaNNiah, Shri BeLLave, B M Shri, Shri.V.see and DVG  etc whom the  author was inspired of. Embedded in between these details are, witty and humorous incidents along with the sketches making this book a worthy read.

I Started searching  for  this authors books  as I was fascinated by his style of writing, and the search led me to  “TamiLu talegaLa naDuve” (Among Tamil heads),  a book of experiences of the author while  teaching  and stay in Madras. This book contains details and his research work of the histories and literatures of both Kannada and Tamil languages. This book  is devoted to examining theories pertaining to languages’ origins (especially the claims that were being made in those days by the Dravidian parties) and mostly debunking them. In his book he has also debunked some of the theories of Tamil historians like Iravatham Mahadevan, Nilkanta Shastri, to name a few. He has raised several questions regarding gaping holes and contradictions in their theories. He  humoursly brings out how he was callled “Pee. Chee.Ila.Chami” (BG L swamy) by them.

“Hasiru  Honnu” was my next find,  Hasiru Honnu (green gold) is a  Kendriya sahithya academy winner . This book is all about the  Botany project  tour experiences with the college students while he taught. His beautiful descriptions of flora and fauna  in Western ghats, (Agumbe) Nilgiri range , ooty , Kodaikanal etc  gives an complete picture of the treasure our country has. I was able to realise this and appreciate it better when I trekked in these  ranges. He has dedicated  a discovery of  new species(a plant)  in Agumbe range in the name of his guru “Irving Bailey”. I wished If  only I was born few decades early and  got a chance to go on a project tour with him…. Sketches and  hurmourous incidents narrated in this  book makes you read it  again and again.By this time I was  addicted to his writing……

I found “Namma hotteayalli DakshiNa america” details of fruits and vegetables which entered recently into our living style from South America   and “ Pradhyapakana peetadalli” experiences  (both bitter and good) in his teaching  career. 

“Americadalli nanu    was  one of the first travel  experience  book that I read.  Enjoyed thoroughly reading it ….“Phalashruthi”, “Durgandhopakhyana “, “Kanyasthree (species of Fungi)” were few of his published articles relating to his  subject and research.Collegeuranga (novel- made into a movie in the same  name), Collegu taranga (Novel), Brihadarnayaka, dairy of a botanist, maisor dairy are few more books  that he worte.In all, Swamy’s literary works encompass a large range of topics. A large number of them are related to botany, and succeed in introducing botanical concepts to the layperson. Other works pertain to History, literature, and some are partially autobiographical, dealing with his experiences as professor and principal. Apart from being an acclaimed botanist, BGL Swamy was also widely respected in the history and literary circles.His insightful satires are rightly considered classics of modern Kannada.-Usha B R

As usual the ‘kaaveri galate’ has re-surfaced after a verdict, this time its the tribunal’s verdict. Its really unfortunate that the tribunal couldn’t get out a verdict that pleases all (although they claim to have done it). No idea what is in store for the coming days, more crowd trouble, holidays, bandhs, damage to property and life? I still remember, the elders at home saying during the earlier ‘kaaveri galate’ in 1992, ‘namma kaaladalli ee galate mugiyo haage kanalla’. Looks like its now our turn to say the same statement..!

The 1992 ‘kaaveri galate’ is still fresh in my mind and infact have very pleasant memories about it. I think it was during the November, December, January period and for some 3 consecutive years, once for Mandal commision, then babri Masjid and again kaaveri galate. We did nothing but play cricket, gilli dandu, kho-kho, kabaddi and what not. So much so that when the schools re-opened and exams were announced immediately, we had forgotten in which standard we were studying! 😉

Now coming back to yesterday’s verdict, I have few reasons to say why its a bad one:

-Its based on some average rainfall in two years or something like that. Why can’t it be just percentage of water based on the availability?– Why did they take 16 long years for the verdict? Does all information collected, assessed and analysed long back still hold good today?

– Although its said that the veridct is a 1000 page one, no one has explained so far, why does Tamilnadu get more water than karnataka? Some one just said its the crop patterns etc but I didn’t understand. By looking at the map, the river delta is almost 40-60% in Kar-TN area, but not at all like it calls for this 270-419 share.

– Even though it was well known that this is a sensitive issue, the verdict wasn’t announced in a cautious manner. It was clear in numbers that TN gets more, thats all. They could’ve put the verdict in 20 other ways such that the facts will only get into the people slowly or will never get into. The numbers could have really been hidden initially and in a phasely manner could have been explained. After all how many people/farmers/villagers can go to the dams and count the cusecs released?What are your thoughts, can there be any solution at all to the ‘kaaveri galate’ in our life-times?My only question (and probably the answer too…) is, if this problem was not infront of our governments but instead a in front of an organization, how would they have handled it?


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