Monday, October 23, 2006

Inverse Logic

It is surprising how easily people who are supposed to be good with such things (for example IIT students) fall for common logical fallacies. For example, one of friends argued thus a few days ago: war is natural. This is so because there are processes that keep the population of a species in check under natural conditions. Examples of such processes are predators, disease, scarcity of resources and (surprise!) war in the case of humans. Now, since humans have eliminated (to a large extent) all other processes of keeping a population in check, it is only natural that it is war that will keep the numbers of human species under control.

It took me some time to get over my stupor generated by the blasphemous nature of this argument. There are couple of logical fallacies involved here.

  1. The assumption that war is just like any other natural process.
  2. The assumption that (rise in species population) (is the cause of) (evolution of natural processes to keep the population in check). In fact it is the other way round. (Natural processes that keep population in control) (are responsible for) (keeping species population in check)
Here I try to keep my IITian arrogance aside :) (cf. the first comment on this post)

When IITians, the students who are supposed to be the top problem solvers of this country can fall for such obvious logical fallacies, what hope do I keep for this country?

Movie Review: Khosla Ka Ghosla

I saw Khosla Ka Ghosla last night. I just started to browse through the DVD with no intention of watching the movie at that time. However, after I had seen the first fifteen minutes, I was hooked. So I watched that movie despite it being late in the night (and consequently getting up late and missing first two lectures today) and guess what, I watched it again today afternoon!

Needless to say, I was mighty impressed with the whole movie. It isn’t surprising, given that we have Anupam Kher and Boman Irani in the star cast. Neither of them disappoints you. In fact, Boman Irani is positively awesome. In an interview he said that he had done extensive homework before portraying the character of a real estate agent. Believe me, it shows. Not that I have had many dealings with estate agents, but whatever little I’ve seen, reflect faithfully on screen.

Anupam Kher is natural in his role as a meek middle class man. He portrays it almost too well. And both the actors playing his sons portray their characters well too.

So let me enlist what I like about the movie.

First is the script. After a very very long time have I seen such a good script. What I have always felt about bollywood is that they don’t need anything to make good movies except good writers. They pick up good concepts but cannot turn the script into a blockbuster. However, with this movie the script alone could have carried it through. The dialogues are natural, at least in the first half of the movie. The picturisation accompanying that appears very natural too. Also, in the second half where things start getting more fictional, the entire affair is done very tightly so that at no point is the movie becoming boring or farcical.

The characterization is wonderful. Each character is typical and identifiable. I could especially connect to the younger Khosla son who is a feeble hearted IITian not knowing much about the practicalities of the world.

Another pleasant surprise within the movie was its music. It is quite good. Especially, the songs ‘Ab Kya Karenge’ and ‘Chak De Phatte’ have the quality of lingering on.

Perhaps the only minus point about the movie is Tara Sharma. That girl neither knows how to act nor how to deliver dialogues. I could have done better than her but alas, I’m not a girl.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

More Rotoscoping

As my research has revealed, what I'm calling rotoscoping is not rotoscoping at all but only a small part of it. However, I'll keep calling it that. The idea is to transform real images in such a way that they appear to be drawn by an artist. So some futher progress has been made.

1. Color rotoscoping has been acheived.
2. The edges are coming out better now. They are not yet perfect but are better.

Some samples are given below.

I think I'm satified with the way the fill is coming out. I can get both 'flat' fills and more textured ones like the ones in these samples. Edges still need a lot of improvement so further work would concentrate on that.

Some people have asked for the details of this work. Please contact me personally. I cannot post the technical details on the blog for the fear of plagiarism.

Monday, October 16, 2006


Rotoscoping is an animation technique used in the movie the Scanner Darkly. I tried some digital rotoscoping myself. The results were not very encouraging. Edge detection is a problem. The fill is coming out fine.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Qoute # 2

Governments don't do what's best for people, they do what's best for the government.