Tag Archives: tvaraj

Technology for the Disabled


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Myself By T.V. Antony Raj
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Have you ever thought about reduced mobility? I mean are you able to walk about freely, doing your daily chores such as cooking, washing, shopping, banking etc., as a normal person does? If so, thank the deities you worship, because reduced mobility is an affliction that millions of people all over the world live with everyday.

Motorized Wheelchair

The number of people in the world suffering from disabilities such as back pain, cerebral palsy, arthritis, Multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease, and many other continue to increase year by year, and has become a major concern to everyone.

Modern technology has produced gadgets and mobility aids also known as ambulation devices such as canes, crutches, walkers, manual and electric wheelchairs, motorized scooters, stair lifts, rollators, lift chairs etc., to help the disabled, injured and the aged to move somewhat freely from place to place.

Choosing the correct device for a particular person takes time and research.

Today, while surfing the net, I stumbled upon a video that showed a robotic mobilization device called Tek RMD (Tek Robotic Mobilization Device) developed by AMS Mekatronic.

This firm established in Istanbul, Turkey, is an R&D company, founded to develop mobilization devices based on innovative ideas for physically disabled people.

Tek RMD, provides the opportunity of movement for people with paraplegia by enabling them to independently stand up in a completely upright position with correct posture, facilitating their movement and comfortable completion of their daily tasks indoors, such as in the home, office and shopping mall. Tek RMD is not an alternative to wheelchairs, it is a totally new concept, a new platform.

What is Tek RMD from Tek RMC on Vimeo

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Pythagoras vs Bothaināyaṉār


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Myself By T.V. Antony Raj

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Pythagoras of Samos

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In Euclidean geometry, the Pythagoras’ theorem (or Pythagorean theorem) is a relation among the three sides of a right triangle (or right-angled triangle). In terms of areas, it states:

In a right-angled triangle, the square of the hypotenuse (the side opposite the right angle) is equal to the sum of the squares of the other two sides.

Animated geometric proof of the Pythagoras the...
Click image to view an animated geometric proof of the Pythagoras theorem. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pythagoras’ theorem can be written as an equation relating the lengths of the sides a, b and c:

where c represents the length of the hypotenuse, and a and b represent the lengths of the other two sides.

If the length of both a and b is known, then c can be calculated as follows:

If the length of hypotenuse c and any one side (a or b) are known, then the length of the other side can be calculated with the following equations:

or

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The Pythagorean theorem is named after the Greek mathematician Pythagoras of Samos, an Ionian Greek philosopher, mathematician, and founder of the religious movement called Pythagoreanism whose central tenet was that numbers constitute the true nature of things.

Pythagoras is credited with the discovery and proof of the theorem. But it is often argued that the knowledge of the theorem predates him. Some claim that Babylonian mathematicians understood the equation, but there is not much of evidence for this claim.

Bothaināyaṉār

Today, while surfing the internet I read a post in Facebook in Tamil and I was impressed by the following Tamil quatrain:

ஓடும் நீளம் தனை ஒரே எட்டுக்
கூறு ஆக்கி கூறிலே ஒன்றைத்
தள்ளி குன்றத்தில் பாதியாய்ச் சேர்த்தால்
வருவது கர்ணம் தானே.

Transliteration:
oadum neelam thanai orae ettuk
kuru aakki koorilae ondraith
thalli kundraththil paathiyaaych cherthaal
varuvathu karnam thaanae

Translation:
Divide the running length into eight equal parts. Discard one of the divided parts and add half the height. Isn’t the result the hypotenuse?

And here is another example:

a = 4
b = 3
So, c = (4 – 4/8) + (3/2) = 5

The article says that the author of this quatrain was a sage, mathematician, and poet named Bothaināyaṉār, and that the advantage of this Bothaināyaṉār‘s theorem over Pythagorean theorem is that the calculations can be easily done without calculating the square root.

By the way, this quatrain failed to produce the answer if a is less than b, for example if a = 3 and b = 4.

Next I tried the following:

Try #1: a = 12, b = 6

Modern mathematics:
sqr((12 x 12) + ( 6 x 6)) = 13.416407864998738178455042012388

Bothaināyaṉār’s method:
(12 – (12 / 8))  + (6 / 2) = 13.5

Try #2: a = 13, b = 9

Modern mathematics:
sqr((13 x 13) + (9 x 9)) = 15.811388300841896659994467722164

Bothaināyaṉār’s method:
(13 – (13 / 8)) + (9 / 2) = 15.875

Try #3: a = 15, b = 12

Modern mathematics:
sqr((15 x 15) + (12 x 12)) = 19.209372712298546059464653023865

Bothaināyaṉār’s method:
(15 – (15 / 8)) + (12 / 2) = 19.125

In most cases, the results obtained using Bothaināyaṉār‘s method was not accurate even to the first decimal place. So, I think I’ll better stick to the Pythagorean theorem.

Today, I spent a good amount of my valuable time on the net to learn about this person named Bothaināyaṉār, but was not able to gather any information about him. I doubt whether this person ever existed.

It’s funny that the Tamil word “Bothai” means inebriation and the word “nāyaṉār” translates to lord, master, or devotee. So, is someone playing a prank using the name Bothaināyaṉār (Devotee of Inebriation)?

The Tamil community and I would be glad if anyone out there could give any relevant and useful information on this subject. Your comments are welcome.

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A Wedding Video and Sanctity of Marriage.


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Myself By T.V. Antony Raj

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Just ask yourself how many times you would have watched a wedding video of another person – once, twice, thrice?

More often, we do not relish watching the wedding videos of relatives and friends, more than once, and that too, by feigning interest and hiding our boredom, merely to keep them happy.

One and a half million views on YouTube
One and a half million views on YouTube

Of late, I watched two wedding video clips of a (Jaffna?) Tamil Hindu couple Dilip and Mohana,  posted on YouTube, with mixed apprehension.

This marriage took place on February 12, 2012 at Sree Maha Mariamman Temple in Singapore. A week later, on February 19, Mohana Rajan, the bride, uploaded two video clips to YouTube.  The first clip shows the groom, Dilip Kumar, entering the wedding hall and the second shows the bride, Mohana Rajan’s entrance.

So far, as of March 19, 2012, the video clip of the entrance made by the groom has had 563,631 views and the video clip of the  bride’s entrance has a record-breaking 1,536,902 views. Above all, a fan page created on Facebook under the name “Dilip Kumar Mohana Rajan” has scored hundreds of likes and many are talking about this wedding.

What is so unique about these clips? To answer this question you must see the clips. Click on the following images to view the videos:

Video #1: Unique Entrance made by the Groom

Dilip Kumar with friends (from the Facebook page "Dilip Kumar Mohana Rajan").
Dilip Kumar with friends (from the Facebook page “Dilip Kumar Mohana Rajan”). Click the image to view video: “Unique Entrance made by the Groom – Karuppu perazhaga”.

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Video # 2: Unique Entrance made by the Bride

Bride Mohana with friends (from the Facebook page "Dilip Kumar Mohana Rajan")
Bride Mohana with friends (from the Facebook page “Dilip Kumar Mohana Rajan”) Click the image to view video: “Unique Entrance made by the Bride”

In an interview given to OLI 96.8FM, Singapore, Mohana Rajan says that she is a Bharatha Natyam dancer and wanted to make her wedding a memorable one, and Dilip Kumar relented to her wish.

These two video clips have produced mixed reactions from viewers. In fact, there are around 144 comments for groom’s entrance and 626 comments for the bride’s entrance on YouTube.

Some praise the clips while those who uphold the sanctity of marriage and wish to follow religious traditions censure them.

One Facebook commentator says,

You guys had a grand fun entrance to your wedding and definitely put on a smile on more than a million faces.. What a blessed way to start your journey of togetherness. Have a blessed married life! (sic) “

Another person comments in YouTube:

Jaffna low caste culture is not considered as Tamil culture. Indian cinema culture destroying pure Jaffna Tamil culture. These kinds of people should be outcasted from society. Ada thuuuuuu. (sic)”

Another comment in YouTube reads:

I really liked the dancing.. just feeling bad that my Tamil culture is extremely ruined. You could have danced in your reception instead. You just forgot that it has a meaning to wear saari and all those traditional stuffs while during the wedding. You didn’t give any meaning to yours instead made it funny. I respect your freedom but think on your own. There is no need to do a Tamil traditional wedding if you don’t believe on it or want to make fun of it. I respect my culture, so do many! (sic)”

You might be intending to ask me what I think about this incident.

Well, I am a Tamil and a Catholic and I believe in the sacrament and sanctity of marriage and wish to uphold the Tamil traditions.  Not only Christians, but all religions agree and preach what I firmly believe.

This couple follows Hinduism, which like Buddhism, is not a religion in the sense, Judaism, Christianity or Islam are. Hinduism like Buddhism is a way of life.

Thousands of years ago Samskaras or sacraments were instituted in Hinduism to bring sanctity and stability to the lives of the people and to integrate their personalities with the society they were born in. The ancient seers and sages, endowed with the sacred knowledge, made it their bounden duty to transform the crude animal that we were, into Homo sapiens, with the help of the Samskaras. In Hindu rituals, life is a cycle. From the birth to death a person undergoes 16 Samskaras; and marriage is one of the most important among them.

The rich, noble heritage of Hindu ethos proclaims that the sacrament of marriage impresses upon a person that earthly life should not be despised; rather it should consciously be accepted and raised to the level of a spiritual existence.

Hindu families live all over the world.  Though some live outside India, they all have strong ties with the Hindu culture and way of life as practiced in India, and feel that they should, on such important occasions in life, such as marriage, perform the Samskara in the traditional Hindu way by availing the rich, noble heritage of Hindu thought, ritual and tradition.

Gatherings of near and dear ones, and reception parties – large or small, most certainly enhance the pleasures of the occasion and the joy of a wedding. However, the Hindu marriage ceremony like the Judaic, Christian, and Islamic, is an ennobling sacrament, and in my humble opinion, it is advisable to perform the marriage rites irrespective of religion in a serene atmosphere without much banal pomp and pageantry.

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Sachin Tendulkar’s Maiden International TEST Century


READERS HAVE VIEWED THIS POST MORE THAN 23,582 TIMES.

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Myself .

 By T.V. Antony Raj
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I have played with him long enough to understand his approach, but I am amazed at the man’s zeal. He wants to be perfect always. His humility is amazing. I have seen Sachin carry drinks for the junior most, much to the embarrassment of the youngster. His discipline is infectious. For Mumbai nets, he comes in the Mumbai training gear. He would never don an India cap or T-shirt for a Mumbai match. He will also not allow anyone to carry his cricket coffin.”  Pravin Amre (Sachin Tendulkar’s coach at Mumbai)

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Raj Singh Dungarpur a former president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India introduced 16-year-old Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar to the world of cricket. The BCCI selection committee under the chairmanship of Dungarpur chose Sachin Tendulkar for the 1989 Indian tour of Pakistan

International Test debut

On his international Test debut in November 1989, Sachin Tendulkar was 16 years 205 days of age, the third youngest cricketer to make his first appearance in international cricket. Mushtaq Mohammad of Pakistan has the honour of being the first youngest person to play Test cricket at 15 years and 124 days; however, there exists some doubt about his exact age at his debut. The second youngest Test Player Aaqib Javed debuted at 16 years 189 days. Since then there have been two players who were younger than Sachin on the day of their cricket Test debut: Mohammad Sharif of Bangladesh (15 years 128 days), and Hasan Raza of Pakistan (14 years 227 days).

Sachin Tendulkar played his first Test match against Pakistan in Karachi. He made just 15 runs bowled out by Waqar Younis, who also made his debut in that match. Cricket critics commended Sachin for braving numerous blows to his body at the hands of the Pakistani pace attack in this series. In the final test in Sialkot, though hit on the nose by a bouncer, he declined medical assistance and continued to bat, with a bleeding nose. In that Test series, Sachin scored 215 runs in all at an average of 35.83.

In a 20 over exhibition game in Peshawar, Tendulkar scored 53 runs off 18 balls, including an over in which he scored 27 runs off Abdul Qadir. The then Indian captain Krishnamachari Srikkanth later recalled this match as “one of the best innings I have seen.”

Maiden International TEST Century

On August 14, 1990, in his 9th international test appearance Sachin Tendulkar scored his maiden Test century vs. England at Old Trafford, Manchester. He was 119 not out in the second innings. This innings is particularly noteworthy as it helped India to clinch an honorable draw in the face of a certain defeat.

At that time, Kapil Dev held the record for the youngest Indian centurion.  On January 24, 1979 Kapil Dev scored 126* with four fours and one six in a drawn match against West Indies at Feroz Shah Kotla Ground, New Delhi.

When Sachin Tendulkar scored his maiden century in 1990, he was the second youngest to score a century in international Test cricket.

Mushtaq Mohammad of Pakistan set the first record as the youngest to score a century in his 6th Test with 101 runs against India in Feroz Shah Kotla Ground, New Delhi when he was just 17 years and 78 days old.

Mohammad Ashraful of Bangladesh bettered Mushtaq’s record that stood for over 40 years. Ashraful made his Test debut on 6 September 2001 against Sri Lanka. He  top-scored in each innings. Although Bangladesh slumped to an innings defeat, Ashraful scored 114, and in the process became the youngest player to score a Test century, beating Mushtaq Mohammad’s record and the second Bangladesh player to score a Test century on debut, the first since Aminul Islam Bulbul in 2000 during Bangladesh’s first Test.

This video show Sachin Tendulkar scoring his first century in International Test.

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Spring Forward to DST


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Myself By T.V. Antony Raj
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Yesterday at 1:30 pm I received a phone call from my elder daughter Sujatha who lives in Palayamkottai, Tirunelveli, India. I asked her “Is it an emergency call? Isn’t it midnight over there? Shouldn’t you be sleeping?”

She laughed and said, “Appa, it’s only eleven o’clock in the night, not midnight.”

Then it dawned on me. I remembered my daughter-in-law, Ligia, telling my wife that morning something about daylight saving time coming into force in the Eastern Time Zone (EST) where Elkridge, MD is.

In India we don’t have this phenomenon called Daylight Saving Time (DST) since in most part of the country we have almost equal amount of daytime and night-time the whole year round.

Daylight-saving time, or DST, is the period of the year when clocks are moved one hour ahead. This has the effect of creating more sunlit hours in the evening during months when the weather is the warmest. The clocks are advanced ahead by one hour at the beginning of DST, and are moved  back one hour (“spring forward, fall back”) to return to standard time (ST).

The  transition from ST to DST has the effect of moving one hour of daylight from the morning to the evening; and the transition from DST to ST effectively moves one hour of daylight from the evening to the morning.

Yesterday, Sunday, March 11 at 2 a.m., the Eastern Time Zone officially switched from standard time to DST, giving us a later sunrise and sunset. DST will now be in effect for 238 days, or about 65% of the year. DST will end at 2 a.m. on November 4, 2012.

So, from yesterday, the time difference between New Delhi, India and Washington DC, USA is -9:30 hours instead of -10:30 hours.

New Delhi is 9:30 hours ahead of Washington DC. That means when it is 8:00 a.m. in Elkridge, Maryland, USA, it is 5:30 pm in Palayamkottai, Tirunelveli, India.

Why does anyone bother with daylight saving time in the first place?

Benjamin Franklin, the 18th century icon, is widely credited with coming up with the concept of daylight saving time in one of his satiric essays. He suggested a later sunset to decrease the use of fuel for artificial lights.

In an effort to conserve fuel, war-torn Germany, during World War I, was the first country in the world to introduce Daylight Saving Time (DST). Germany began observing DST on May 1, 1916. As the war progressed, most countries in Europe followed suite.

United States introduced the Standard Time Act on March 19, 1918 that established standard time zones and set summer Daylight Saving Time  to begin on March 31, 1918. Though the idea of DST was beneficial to the country, it was unpopular on many fronts and US Congress abolished DST after the war. DST then became a local option and observed in some states.

When World War II began,on February 9, 1942 President Franklin Roosevelt implemented year-round DST, called “War Time”. It lasted till the last Sunday in September 1945. From the following year, many states and localities in US adopted summer DST.Today, most of the United States and its territories observe DST. However, DST is not observed in Hawaii, American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands and the state of Arizona.

“There’s a Navajo saying about it,” said Marshall Trimble, Arizona’s State Historian, “That only the U.S. government could believe that when you chop the top off a blanket and sew it on the bottom, you have a longer blanket.”

Some tribes, including the Hopi and, locally, the Yavapai-Prescott Tribe, don’t spring forward in Arizona, but others like the Navajo Indian Reservation, does observe DST. This creates time zone pockets within time zone pockets, causing headaches for travelers in northeastern Arizona.

“Depending on where you’re coming from, you could change your watch, drive a few miles, change it again, drive a few miles and change it again,” said Trimble.

Women in Western Art – A Video by Philip Scott Johnson


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Myself . By T.V. Antony Raj
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Philip Scott Johnson used Abrosoft Fantamorph to create this enthralling video.  He uploaded the video on to YouTube on April 22, 2007 under the pseudonym . It was nominated  for 2007 YouTube Awards in the “Creative” category.

DAVOS/SWITZERLAND, 25JAN08 - Yo-Yo Ma, Cellist...

The background music being played is “Bach’s Sarabande from Suite for Solo Cello No. 1 in G Major, BWV 1007” performed by the French Americancellist, virtuoso, and orchestral composer Yo-Yo Ma.

I hope you like this video as much as I do.

If you are a curious cat like me, then visit Ms. Boni’s site to find the complete list of artists and paintings used in this video by  Philip Scott Johnson.

Women In Art from Philip Scott Johnson on Vimeo

Remembering Sirimavo – The Modern World’s First Female Head of Government


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Myself By T.V. Antony Raj
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Today, March 8, 2012 (Thursday) is the 101st International Women’s Day.

Currently, there are 17 countries with women as head of government, head of state, or both, which according to Inter-Parliamentary Union and UN Women has more than doubled since 2005.

The honour of being the modern world’s first female head of government goes to the late Sri Lankan politician Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike. She served as Prime Minister of Ceylon, now Sri Lanka, three times, 1960–65, 1970–77 and 1994–2000.

Mrs. Sirimavo Ratwatte Dias Bandaranaike (Sinhala: සිරිමාවෝ රත්වත්තේ ඩයස් බන්ඩාරනායක, Tamil: சிறிமாவோ ரத்வத்தே டயஸ் பண்டாரநாயக்க) was born on April 17, 1916 as Sirimavo Ratwatte to Barnes Ratwatte Dissawe and Rosalind Mahawelatenne Kumarihamy of Mahawelatenne Walauwa, Balangoda. She was the eldest of six, with four brothers and one sister.

Mrs. Bandaranaike was educated at St Bridget’s Convent, Colombo, run by Roman Catholic nuns. She was a devout Buddhist. In 1940 she married Solomon West Ridgeway Dias Bandaranaike. They had three children, Chandrika, Sunethra and Anura.

Her husband Mr. S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike, a member of the State council and son of Sir Solomon Dias Bandaranaike, the Maha Mudaliyar (chief native interpreter and advisor to the Governor of Ceylon), was elected as Prime Minister of Ceylon in 1956. His election marked a significant change in Ceylon’s political history. In 1959, a Buddhist monk assassinated him while in office.

After the death of  Mr. S.W.R.D. Bandaranaike, there was much confusion in the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP), founded by him, and it was on the verge of collapsing. At the request of senior party members, Mrs Bandaranaike took over the presidency of SLFP. Though she was an untried leader, she quickly established herself as a formidable politician in her own right, and was the long-time undisputed leader of the Sri Lanka Freedom Party. She remained leader of the party for the next forty years.

Known to her fellow Sri Lankans as “Mrs. B,” she could skillfully use popular emotion to boost her support, frequently bursting into tears as she pledged to continue her assassinated husband’s vaguely socialist policies. Hence her opponents and critics dubbed her as “the weeping widow”.

In 1960, M. P. de Zoysa (Jnr) stepped down from his seat in the Senate (appointed upper house of Parliament) paving the way for Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike to be appointed as a member of the Senate from the SLFP.

As a bereaved wife and mother of three, Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike led her party to win the July 1960 elections on the pledge to continue her husband’s policies, notably the Sinhala Only Act, and to proceed with repatriation of the estate Tamils to India. On July 21, 1960, she took the oath as prime minister of Sri Lanka, thus becoming the first female prime minister in the modern world.

But within a year of her historic 1960 election victory, she was inundated by a prolonged ‘civil disobedience campaign’ by the minority Tamil population, outraged by her action in replacing English with Sinhala as the official national language and her order to conduct all government business in Sinhala, the language of the majority Sinhalese. The Sri Lankan Tamils considered this a highly discriminatory act and an attempt to deny Tamils access to all official posts and the law. This led to an increase in Tamil militancy which escalated under succeeding administrations. With no other solution in sight, she declared a state of emergency.

Further problems arose when the government took over foreign businesses, particularly petroleum companies. This move irked the United States and Britain, and aid to Sri Lanka was stopped. So, Mrs. Bandaranaike moved towards China and the Soviet Union and championed a policy of nonalignment.

At home, she crushed an attempted military coup also known as the Colonels coup by Christian officers in 1962.

In 1964, Mrs. Bandaranaike entered into a historic coalition with the Marxist Lanka Sama Samaja Party (LSSP).

In December 1964, Mrs. Bandaranaike and her cabinet were defeated by a no-confidence vote when some of her MPs deserted the party over the nationalization of Lakehouse Newspapers. The SLFP coalition was defeated in the 1965 elections, ending her first term as Prime Minister.

In 1970, she became prime minister of Ceylon once again, after an electoral landslide victory by United Front, her left-wing coalition coalition consisting SLFP, LSSP, and the Communists. She developed strong personal ties with China and the then Indian prime minister, Indira Gandhi.

But after just 16 months in power, the government was almost toppled by the  April 1971 JVP Insurrection of left-wing youths led by the Sinhalese Sri Lankan People’s Liberation Front, or Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna, a movement started in the late 1960s by Rohana Wijeweera, the son of a businessman.

There was no warning of the uprising, and Sri Lanka’s small army was caught off guard, since Mrs. Bandaranaike had disbanded the government’s intelligence service, suspecting that it was loyal to the opposition United National Party (UNP).

Although the insurgents were young, poorly armed and inadequately trained, they succeeded in seizing and holding major areas in southern and central provinces of the island before they were defeated by government forces. Thanks to Mrs. Bandaranaike’s skillful foreign policy, the government was saved by military aid from both India and Pakistan.

This unsuccessful rebellion by Sinhalese Marxist youth claimed more than 15,000 lives. Their attempt to seize power created a major crisis for the government and forced a fundamental reassessment of the nation’s security needs.

During those tough political years, Mrs. Bandaranaike turned herself into a formidable leader. “She was the only man in her cabinet”, one of her officials commented during the height of the insurgency.

In 1971, she declared the country a republic, and changed the name of the island nation from Ceylon to Sri Lanka.

She also nationalised some companies in the plantation sector and restricted some imports.

By 1975 her government gradually became very unpopular. Under the Soulbury constitution, election should have been held in 1975, but she used a clause of the 1972 constitution to delay elections until 1977.

But in 1976, despite high international standing, Mrs Bandaranaike’s popularity at home declined with a faltering economy and allegations of corruption; and she lost much of the support given to her by the left parties, thus paving the way to a crushing election defeat in 1977, winning only 8 pathetic seats and she managed to win her own seat.

The 1980s were her dark years. Sri Lankan parliament expelled her in 1980, accusing her of misusing power for the 1975-77 delay in elections, and banned her from holding any office for seven years.  She became a political outcast, rejected by her own people who had once idolized her.

Her civic rights were restored in 1986, and she narrowly lost the election for the new, more powerful post of president in 1988.

In 1994, the SLFP-led coalition called the People’s Alliance (PA) won the general elections. Mrs. Bandaranaike’s daughter Chandrika Kumaratunga first become prime minister and then became president of Sri Lanka the same year in November 1994.

Chandrika Kumaratunga then appointed her mother Mrs. Bandaranaike, as prime minister for the third time. As the constitution had changed since her last tenure as prime minister Mrs. Bandaranaike was now subordinate to her daughter, the President.

Political observers said that Mrs. Bandaranaike and her daughter Chandrika Kumaratunga did not have a good rapport, and that her daughter wanted her mother to leave the office to make way for a younger person.

Mrs Sirimavo Bandaranaike remained in office till a few months before her death, but had little real power. She reluctantly gave up the reins of power on 10 August 2000. Exasperated she said, “I believe it is time for me to quietly withdraw from the humdrum of busy political life, to a more tranquil and quiet environment”

Mrs. Sirimavo Bandaranaike died on Election Day, October 10, 2000, after having cast her vote for the last time. She was 84.

“May Madam Sirimavo Bandaranaike, Sri Lanka’s charismatic matriarch, attain Eternal Bliss.” – Mahinda Rajapakse, President of Sri Lanka, in a  tribute on her 88th Birth Anniversary commemoration  (April 17, 2004).

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Fractions used by Ancient Tamils


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Myself .

By T. V. Antony Raj
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In our conversations, we, Tamils, use words denoting fractions very frequently without batting an eyelid.

A Tamil goldsmith will assure his client, “இம்மி அளவேனும் குறையாது (immi alavaenum kurayathu) meaning “not a fraction less”. Here, the word இம்மி (immi) is the Tamil word for the fraction 1/2150400 ≈ 4.6502976190476190476190476190476e-07.

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The word “aNu“, meaning “Atom”, is used very frequently by the Tamils to denote very minute portions or particles. In ayurvedic and sidda medicines the naattu vaithiyar (the country doctor) might give instructions to his assistant to add “அணு அளவு பாதரசம்” (aNu alavu padharasam) meaning “an atom sized mercury”. Here the word அணு (aNu) is the Tamil word for the fraction 1/165580800 ≈ 6.0393475572047000618429189857761e-09.

Now, I wonder why the ancient Tamils had such names for these particular fractions. The smallest fraction to be named being தேர்த்துகள் (thaertthugal) which is

1/2323824530227200000000  ≈ 4.3032508995084501477534881372607e-22

I am not able to fathom the underlying reason for the ancient Tamils to use such minute fractions and name them too. I read somewhere that the only place where such minute fractions are used nowadays is in NASA but I am not sure.

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Here is the list that I gathered of fractions used by the ancient Tamils:

1 – ஒன்று – onRu
3/4 = 0.75 – முக்கால் – mukkaal
1/2= 0.5 – அரை – arai
1/4 = 0.25 – கால் – kaal
1/5 = 0.2 – நாலுமா – naalumaa
3/16 = 0.1875 – மும்மாகாணி – mummaakaani
3/20 = 0.15 – மும்மா – mummaa
1/8 = 0.125 – அரைக்கால் – araikkaal
1/10 = 0.1 – இருமா – irumaa
1/16 = 0.0625 – மாகாணி (வீசம்) – maakaaNi (veesam)
1/20 = 0.05 – ஒருமா – orumaa
3/64 = 0.046875 – முக்கால்வீசம் – mukkaal veesam
3/80 = 0.0375 – முக்காணி – mukkaaNi
1/32 = 0.03125 – அரைவீசம் – araiveesam
1/40 = 0.025 – அரைமா – araimaa
1/64 = 0.015625 – கால் வீசம் – kaal veesam
1/80 = 0.0125 – காணி – kaaNi
3/320 = 0.009375 – அரைக்காணி முந்திரி – araikkaaNi munthiri
1/160 = 0.00625 – அரைக்காணி – araikkaaNi
1/320 = 0.003125 – முந்திரி – munthiri
3/1280 = 0.00234375 – கீழ் முக்கால் – keel mukkal
1/640 = 0.0015625 – கீழரை – keelArai
1/1280 = 7.8125e-04 – கீழ் கால் – keel kaal
1/1600 = 0.000625 – கீழ் நாலுமா – keel nalumaa
3/5120 ≈ 5.85938e-04 – கீழ் மூன்று வீசம் – keel moondru veesam
3/6400 = 4.6875e-04 – கீழ் மும்மா – keel mummaa
1/2500 = 0.0004 – கீழ் அரைக்கால் – keel araikkaal
1/3200 = 3.12500e-04 – கீழ் இருமா – keel irumaa
1/5120 ≈ 1.95313e-04 – கீழ் வீசம் – keel veesam
1/6400 = 1.56250e-04 – கீழொருமா – keelorumaa
1/102400 ≈ 9.76563e-06 – கீழ்முந்திரி – keezh munthiri
1/2150400 ≈ 4.65030e-07 – இம்மி – immi
1/23654400 ≈ 4.22754e-08 – மும்மி – mummi
1/165580800 ≈ 6.03935e-09 – அணு – aNu
1/1490227200 ≈ 6.71039e-10 – குணம் – kuNam
1/7451136000 ≈ 1.34208e-10 – பந்தம் – pantham
1/44706816000 ≈ 2.23680e-11 – பாகம் – paagam
1/312947712000 ≈ 3.19542e-12 – விந்தம் – vintham
1/5320111104000 ≈ 1.87966e-13 – நாகவிந்தம் – naagavintham
1/74481555456000 ≈ 1.34261e-14 – சிந்தை – sinthai
1/1489631109120000 ≈ 6.71307e-16 – கதிர்முனை – kathirmunai
1/59585244364800000 ≈ 1.67827e-17 – குரல்வளைப்படி – kuralvaLaippidi
1/3575114661888000000 ≈ 2.79711e-19 -வெள்ளம் – veLLam
1/357511466188800000000 ≈ 2.79711e-21 – நுண்மணல் – nuNNmaNal
1/2323824530227200000000 ≈ 4.30325e-22 – தேர்த்துகள் – thaertthugal

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Did Decimal Numerals originate from Tamil Numerals?


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Myself By T.V. Antony Raj
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Recently I saw this picture in Facebook posted by Mr. Lenin Pugal. I think he must have downloaded it from a Tamil website (www.natpu.in) because the watermark says so.

However, being a Tamil, this picture impressed me very much.

According to this post, the decimal numeral system that we use had been derived from the Tamil numerals. The heading says,

Eyes of arithmetic! Tamil numerals!

  • In the first column we see the Tamil numerals.
  • In the second column certain portions of the Tamil numerals are erased, indicated in red.
  • The third column is the resulting decimal numbers.

Isn’t this an eye opener?

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Klok beats the clock


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Myself By T.V. Antony Raj
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If you are asked to perform 10 illusions within a span of 5 minutes can you take on the challenge? The handsome Dutch illusionist Hans Klok beat the clock by performing his fastest illusions in 5 minutes – faster than he ever did.

Dutch illusionist and actor Johannes Franciscus Catharinus “Hans” Klok was born in Purmerend, Netherlands on 22 February 1969. He began his career in magic as a teenager. By the time he was sixteen he had won awards in several international competitions. At the age 23, he was part of a touring show along with famous Dutch comedian André van Duin.

His debut in USA was in 1994, when he performed for the first time on the Las Vegas Strip, as part of NBC’s “The World’s Greatest Magic.” This was broadcast live from Caesars Palace to an audience of over 60 million people.

He then toured Europe and China for 10 years and appeared in Las Vegas once more.

During the opening ceremony of the 2006 FIFA World Cup in Germany, he enthralled around 500 million football fans in 152 countries, by making the 18-carat gold World Trophy appear out of thin air in a glass cage.

In 2012 he broke his own world record for the most illusions done in 5 minutes on the BBC show, “The Magicians.”

Hans Klok has also acted in films and TV:

2002 – Le plus grand cabaret du monde (TV series) in Episode dated 14 December 2002.

2003 – De D van dag (short drama – 22 mins)

2004 – Sinterklaas en het geheim van de Robijn (adventure, family film 115 mins) in whcih Hans Klok appeared as Bisschop van Zwitserland.

2007 – The 2007 World Magic Awards (family, fantasy TV movie 120 mins). Roger Moore appears as himself at the host of the show. The Hans Klok and Pamela Anderson team was fun to watch as well as the other performers.

2009 – De Dik Voormekaar show (comedy TV series). In Episode #1.10, Meneer De Bok hopes Klok will make his wife disappear.

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