All posts by Arnab G

About Arnab G

Hi! I'm Arnab. Engineer by degree. Designer by interest. Performer by choice.

To See The Light, Surround Yourself In Darkness

It’s amazing what all you will notice when the lights go out.

Some sources of illumination aren’t as bright as others but that doesn’t make them any less significant. Pull yourself away from the hustle and bustle of the city, for instance, and insert yourself into the quiet deserted outskirts of civilisation. The sights and sounds may just amaze you.

Take a drive through the barely-touched landscape of the countryside in the evening and watch the sun set.

Ride along the coast and bask in the aural ambience of the waves crashing softly against the shore, with nary a distraction to pull your attention away. Feel your thoughts placate in your mind. Experience your breath lengthen to, almost, mimic the natural rhythm of the waves.

Take in the sea breeze and sense it purifying your body from within. Admire the beauty and harmony that has resulted from thousands of years of transformation that the coast has seen, as your eye muscles learn to relax and focus on the bigger picture.

Let the serenity percolate down from your mind to your heart and soul. Know that for every storm you have weathered so far in life, there is a moment like this waiting to relieve you of your worries.

Take a picture of this moment with your mind’s eye. You won’t regret it.

As darkness settles around you, get back on the road and ponder on about how ephemeral each moment of life is. Let your gaze wander till they look up above.

Stop yourself. Get off the car. And step out to absorb a view you find too good to be true.

Marvel at the expansive strip of stars draped over the sky. Stare up at the grandeur that is, the galaxy. Feel the exhilaration and yet the calming comfort at the same time, at the sight of something so limitless yet very much a constant. Feel rather insignificant as you observe a tiny portion of the entire cosmos stretching out for immeasurable distances.

Let the waves washing by in the distance, wind whistling past your ears, and the sky full of stars give you the ultimate experience of exhilaration, pride, wonder, humility, amazement, and awe as you realise that.. To see the light you must be surrounded by darkness.
Literally.

And figuratively.

A few possible ways to kickstart your mornings

A few possible ways to kick-start your mornings

It’s definitely true that workdays are more productive when you hit the ground running.

On some days, I feel like getting up and reaching for the stars. I slip on something I feel confident in, grab my favourite over-priced coffee from the cafe near work, and walk my way to the office with all the swagger I can muster.

On other days, it feels like a Herculean task to just get my weary body off the bed. What to wear? That’s a question that sends me into an infinite loop. Breakfast? Yea, I’ll just have lunch straight. Walking into the office reminds me of being herded into the classroom back in in primary school.

Here’s an article that I chanced upon, that summarises a few things you could do to make your mornings more like the former scenario than the latter.

In short:

  1. Inspire your body – Stretch your body and take a few deep breaths right after you wake up.
  2. Inspire your mind – Wake up and have a set of goals ready for the day. Read them out loud. Really believe in them.
  3. Ignore emails and messages – DON’T reach for the phone first thing after your eyes open. (I plead guilty!) The emails and messages can wait until you’re getting some breakfast.
  4. Fuel your body – With GOOD breakfast, and this includes the coffee!
  5. Fuel your mind – Listen to some uplifting and motivational music on the way to work.
  6. Be upbeat, not annoying – It’s your responsibility to be enthused in the morning. It’s not your responsibility to go about smearing enthusiasm in everybody else’s faces.
  7. Do something important first – Instead of diving into the nitty-gritty first, get the ball rolling with a big-ticket item in your goals list first. Refer to #2 above.

With the help of these cues, your Mondays (and other days too)  should hopefully go from http://farm8.staticflickr.com/7121/7599261196_7483a22bee.jpg

OH God.. Monday X-(

to

Success!

Why do youngsters get so much gratification from virtual games? Why do so many of us consider the world of these games to be just as big, if not bigger, than our real lives?
Why did I feel so much more of a rush playing an online game when I was younger, as compared to now?

Case in point – 15 yr old me obsessing over Tribal Wars vs. 22 yr old me picking up the game after a 6 year hiatus.

The younger me was literally obsessed with playing this online game at every chance I got. I’d get up early in the mooning, rush home after school, and even stay up till late in the night to play this strategy – based game. The me now got reminded of it by a classmate from school, and decided to give it a shot. Somehow, the excitement levels just aren’t the same. There is nostalgia, but not that passion which was bordering on addiction.

I’d like to think it’s because now I know/realise there are bigger sources of accolades, more meaningful sources of that rush than such games and the achievements that come along with them.

I guess as we grow older and wiser, our view of the world expands. We understand more things, realise more truths, accept more facts than before.

While the gratification that a game offers is constant (level up a character, successful attacks, more resources, etc.. ), to the 13 year old who’s engrossed in the world of his/her favourite computer game, these sources of gratification means so much more than to someone who has more avenues of his/her real life that can provide a similar sense of good-feels.

David Blaine shares the last magic trick that boggled his mind

Now this is one guy who’s so much meat beneath the frills!

TED Blog

David Blaine, the magician, illusionist and endurance artist, is back on prime time TV tonight with the special, David Blaine: Real or Magic. Traveling around the world, the TED speaker (watch his talk, “How I held my breath for 17 minutes“) performs magic and elicits astonished reactions from people on the street — as well as from a formidable roster of celebrities, including Woody Allen, Ricky Gervais, Kanye West, Robert DeNiro and Stephen Hawking (who Blaine visited at his office in Cambridge University).[ted_talkteaser id=741]

Blaine called TED on the day of his show’s premiere, between filming a bit for Nightline and live tweeting his special, which airs tonight at 9:30pm ET on ABC. Here’s what we asked him.

What was the last magic act or trick you saw that made you go “huh?” 

Hadji Ali’s performance on Laurel and Hardy in the early 1930s blew my mind. I’ve been fixated on it for…

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Robert Carlson's Glass Mind

Glass sculpting is really underrated. An incredible execution of an amazing art form.

Cameron Karsten's Imaginarium

BobCarlson-15Robert Carlson is an internationally-renowned glass artist and a master not in disguise.  Bob lives his life as an artist, from his work to his art collections and the uniqueness of his home, to the way he parties and likes his martinis.  I had the opportunity to photograph Bob while he was an artist-in-residence at the Museum of Glass Hot Shop in Tacoma, Washington, where he came up with and devised his newest creations from an imagination wild. Bob is pictured up, sketching his latest invention, pulling from depths of his mind something real.

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BobCarlson-448On-hand apprentices assisted Bob throughout the week-long residency. Typically, after the glass is blown and cooled, he’ll spends months with the pieces, studying their forms and subtle messages found within shapes and processes.  Next he employs a reverse-painting technique using mirrors to create the imagery. These will appear on the back side of the glass structures…

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My Moustache Brings All the Girls to the Yard

To the manliest month of the year!

Coffee Shop Confessions

Image

Here we are in one of the most magical months of the twelve month cycle. It’s a season of pumpkin pie consumption, alluring red coffee sleeves from Starbucks, and being thankful for gluttony. But more than any of these reasons (Because I’m American, and am therefore allowed to arbitrarily rank things however I wish) is that we get to enjoy the preferred nut of cultured men everywhere, the mustaccio.

A brief walk through history is all one need take to see the warmth of the mustache fire which men are inexplicably drawn to. It is a transcender of race and culture, bringing people together across borders and even oceans. Just look at photos of the Big Three from World War II – Stalin, FDR, and Churchill. Of the three of them, who looks the most comfortable and friendly? Stalin. Would we make a deal with an angry communist? I think…

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4 practical ways to test your Android app

Through the course of my college life, I’ve had the chance to (more like, requirement of) work towards developing a mobile app for the Android platform,  much to my chagrin at the time. 

I remember a specific part of the development process that took a lot of time and effort – Testing the app. From harassing friends to classmates to parents, my team and I left almost no stone unturned in trying to get people to try out the app in various user scenarios and, basically, try to break the app in any way possible. Just so we’d find out about the holes to plug in, before releasing a build version of the app. 

These memories were ruffled up as I chanced upon this ARTICLE on testing your Android app. Some good advice in here, which should become second nature once you’ve gotten down and dirty with developing apps.

 

I must admit, I came out all the wiser after my stint with app development. I’ve new-found  appreciation for developers and the hard work that they put in. And I do recommend making your own app on any platform, once at least. The experience is interesting.