My 330 :)

The extremely beautiful Airbus 330 (D-AIKH) of LH that took me from ORD to FRA. Love this plane :)


Till the end of time..

i didn't think you'd object anyway.


The Golden Eagle

And finally a decent video of the S-37 berkut. The ultimate evolution of the Sukhoi Flanker. A sobered down version will see the light of day as the PAK-FA project, in which India might take a stake. PAK-FA stands for Perspektivnyi Aviatsionnyi Kompleks - Frontovoi Aviatsyi. Go figure.


And what did the mad Russians do?

They took a piss over everyone at Aero India that's what they did. I still remember clearly... the americans showing off the F-teens, doing their darnedest best to capture the crowd's imagination. They really sounded desperate, when their almost propaganda-like voice over called their planes the defenders of freedom, et al.. the C-17 doing admittedly impressive flypasts, but wasn't good enough.. the Swedes had a go with their little gripen, but that wasn't up to scratch as well. Hell, even the LCA or the Sarangs or the IAF Su 30 MKI solo which was far better than most that we'd seen all day, was not the best.
The best of the lot, was one diminutive bright red and white mig-29 OVT fighter from russia that took to the skies in the afternoon with some faintly familiar western classical music playing on the klaxons... and the crowd went quiet looking at the awesome spectacle that followed. I remember wanting to shout out, cheer that mad pilot, but like every other person in that crownd, i didnt want to ruin the moment. Five-odd minutes passed like a dream, with the plane showing us stuff we didnt imagine was possible. I mean, i had thought i'd seen it all with the Su-30MKIs this year as well as last, but this guy stood all of that on its head.And the crowd erupted in applause as soon as his show was over and he flew away from the airfield. Not even the surya kirans could match him in the intensity of applause received. I saw a few teary eyed folks after that.. and no, im not joking.. in less than five minutes, this russian plane had taken a piss over all the other contingents in the airshow, at least from the lay-crowd's standpoint. If the Mig wins the MRCA order, he'll have had the last laugh on top of this, as well...
Anyway, the Russians are doing it again right now at Dubai Air Show, and unless Airbus are gonna fly a squadron of 380s barrel rolling in formation, this guy's gonna take the cake again...

Ive added a video above, that hardly does justice to what i saw.


But Luke, I am your father..

Luke : Other kids dont have to put up with this sorta thing..


Whoa. Just, Whoa!

This makes the honda ad look sissy.


TED Videos - 5

My Hero Burt Rutan speaks on the future of space exploration. And makes some very valid points. I'll get to those once i get over the fanboi-ness regarding the sideburns :D

But really. Some great insights into the importance of exploration. You might not be a designer or an aviator but if you think you're inquisitive, listen to this man.


TED Videos - 4

Think you were educated? Think again. Ken Robinson speaks..


Sukhoi mounts a Challenge

Sukhoi has unveiled the superjet 100, its contender for the regional jet market. With backing from a lot of heavyweights including boeing and snecma, this first all new post-soviet has notched up some orders already. I love russian jets, especially sukhois and migs. and like a little kid backing his team in a football match, i often close my eyes and pray.. that this plane makes it big, and as a long shot, that alliance air buys these so that i might fly on them on a day not too far away. So far all I've seen is its Sam146 engine at aero india 2007.

goodluck and godspeed, sukhoi.



In utter boredom, i bring to you people who are madder than i am, or can ever hope to be. We have with us mad stuntmen...

... mad pilots (god bless them)...

...mad russian pilots (as if there weren't enough)...

...mad transformers geeks... ok thats enough madness for now i guess. anti boredom campaigns rule.


Cold War Kids - We Used to Vacation

Continuing with the music video trip.. this is a band i've just started listening to, so can't really recommend them since i dont know too much. But i do like what i've heard so far, and am putting this up. I like the video as well, perhaps a tad more than the song..


Stop - Kopek

Animated video for a song named 'Stop' by a band called 'Kopek'. I know very little about them except the fact that they are an indie outfit, and they don't seem to have a website as yet, or even a wiki entry. But the song is good, as is the video. Got it from here, actually. There are some stills as well as the animatics there.

EDIT : they do have a site, and its pretty neat as well...


Just for Laffs..

Now i know why viral videos are, um, viral.. was just sittin around bored when i came across the above two videos, and nearly fell outta my chair laughing despite the fact that i've seen them before. I've come to the conclusion that there are too many bored people in the world, though the conclusion is not one that puts me in a Sherlock Holmes sorta league. Anwyay...

King Antonov the 2nd

I now have a roommate, and his name is Antonov the Second, King of Suburbia. I missed Antonov (the First, in picture) a lot the other day, and i suspect that this had something to do with the fact that both egress routes from my house lead via an aquarium. So i snapped, and stepped into one, and now A2 is here. Of course, i rather foolishly forgot that i am going away for two months, so now i have to arrange another royal quarters for his highness.

Edit: King Antonov the 2nd is with us no more, he passed away a few weeks back. R.I.P.


Kuznetsov Carrier Ops

Sukhoi SU-33

Some really cool footage of the Naval Sukhois in action off the deck of the Admiral Kuznetsov. If old soviet footage was great due to their furtive, archival nature, i think new Russian military footage is awesome in their ability to impress and showcase capabilities. And a great plane as well, though we'd be getting the sister MiG-29 Ks cos these are too big for the Gorshkov nee Vikramaditya.


More Fulcrum

Some pretty cool footage in this 15 min video about the MiG-29 fulcrum. Pretty exhaustive, covering a lot of variants and aspects like maintenance as well. I'm on the lookout for a good video of the OVT Fulcrum, i've seen it with my own eyes at aero india and i was amazed at what it could do. Hope we buy these for the airforce ;)


No Fokker Comes Close

Found these while looking up the spitfire. The spitfire, apart from the prolific WW2 aircraft, also is the name of a brand of british beer, who've used that in beating the germans (er, their beer that is) to a pulp. And the brand is not even old, it started only in the 90s according to their website. But the whole play on words regarding the war makes for some pretty cool advertisements. My personal favourite is "No Fokker Comes Close".

Please excuse all the red though.


Agent Venkatachalam

If the Matrix were made in south India, this is what the agents would look like. Meet agents sundarakantam, venkatachlam and balasubrahmanyam.


On Gifts...

A lot of people don't consider a book an imaginative gift to give. I beg to differ. A book is the only gift you can give that can match all the colors in the spectrum of human imagination. Those who think that gifting a book means you're short of imagination are perhaps stuck on the physical, the material. A food processor or a carpet for a housewarming gift might be deemed practical, a birthday gift based on a person's interests might be deemed imaginative on the giver's part, but me, I'd rather gift books any day. For, between those two covers could lie the answers someone is seeking, the questions that might set one off on new journeys, or the simple thrill of opening up to something you haven't known before. And for me that's more thrilling than a toaster or a pendant any day.

Yeah, music might come close, but books are still tops...


TED Videos - 3

Ze Frank is funny as hell :)

MAKS - 2007

Its that time again, when fans of Russian aviation get shivers of anticipation runnin on their spines.. it comes every two years, lasts a week and leaves us with stuff to talk about till the next time it comes around. It the Moscow airshow MAKS, a.k.a Moscow Air and Space Salon in the Russian. I've been planning a pilgrimage to this show which happens in the airbase at Zhukovsky in the Moscow region. I've invited all and sundry to go with me, and some fellow aviation lovers have agreed as well. The plan was to fly on one of those cheap Russian airlines out of mumbai or goa, reach moscow and backpack around to the old soviet airbases and aviation museums, watch MAKS, ensure one flight on a Tu-154, travel to Vladivostok on the trans siberian and then get back. But then, a trip is not possible before MAKS2009, as none of us had any money to make it there this year.
Which is kinda sad, cos this year we would have seen the Tu-144 restored to its former glory. That and the Tu-160 flying displays. Oh hell, they way the Russians are headed these days, I wouldn't put it past them to have the 144 back in flying condition by the next MAKS. That should make a lot of people proud.

Images from Airliners.net


Devotchka, The Love for.. etc

Small story based on a true incident that happened a few days ago. And also, my love for their music. Click on pic to read.


New meaning to pencil light?

Cool vid of how to turn a pencil into an emergency light source. Not all that practical, but quite cool nonetheless.

KTM Fanboy :)

Click on pic to see text in detail. Duh.
Also the result that occurs when you have a wacom and lots of time on your hands.


This guy at www.bea.st does some pretty cool techno sculpture and suchlike stuff. Check out this lightbulb for instance. It looks like a wireless floating lightbulb. It levitates between magnetic fields and uses magnetic hall effect sensors and a PD feedback system to stabilize the bulb while floating. LEDs inside the bulb turn AC power to DC and emit light. Check out the site for more.


бомба царя - Tsar Bomba

For those of you who were wondering about my gtalk status message for the last few days, here's the explanation.. it reads 'Tsar Bomba' of the king of all bombs. It was the name of the largest thermonuclear device ever exploded, dubious kudos to the USSR. It was so massive it could only partially fit into the bomb bay of the Tu-95 bear bomber, and its fallout still haunts the island of novaya zemlya. In fact, to reduce fallout its yield was reduced to 50 from 100 megatons. More on it at бомба царя

Volga V-12

This is one of my transfer posts.. as in, I've posted about this before on my stumbleblog. But hell, i bet you automobile freaks haven't seen this one in your rush to drool overs the latest lambos, ferraris and beemers. This, folks, is a Russian car by the name Volga V12. It is a coupe. I have not seen pictures of any colour but black. These were made by the same factory that made the venerable GAZ cars. And, imo, it is the most beautiful car ever. Its spinning off so many retro concepts in my head that i wish i could sketch better :D It is also the ultimate gangster car, sitting perfectly with the vision of the russian post-communism mafiosi and oligarchs. One cool car.

That first pic is a modded version btw.



Just.. that last post was too wide. verdammt.



http://view.break.com/350055 - Watch more free videos

Princess Juliana Airport at St. Maarten Island in the Netherland Antilles. Absolute spotter heaven, i wanna go there someday before they install ILS and ruin the feeling of gettin blasted into the water by jumbojets flyin overhead.


Russian Traceur

Some of the best skills i've seen in parkour so far.. awesome. Restart the club anyone? ;)

Magazine Covers..

Some cool magazine covers i came across somewhere.. don't remember where though. Anyways, here they are, and my favourite is the national lampoon cover :) The first one is andy warhol drowning in a campbell soup can. meh.


TED Videos - 2

This is Al Gore's follow up presentation at TED. I know i should put the "inconvenient truth" presentation first, but i can't find a video of that as yet. Will change things when i do. Anyways, great stand up comic, mr Gore.

444 SSBJ

Sorry about the Tupolev trip, but a bit more digging brought up this new piece of info. There is another Russian supersonic business jet on the boards, the Tu-444 which i believe draws heavily from the Tu-144 experience. This is apart from the Sukhoi Gulfstream JV which sukhoi is rumoured to be taking forward alone. This in turn is apart from all the western studies and proposals including one presented as recently as the Paris airshow. It seems supersonic people movers might return after all, albeit moving fewer and richer people. Will post more on supersonic projects of the future once i do some more research, including on the Tu-244, an apparent second coming of the 144.

Tu-134 Cigarettes..

The soviet version of Mirage Paan masala? Perhaps.. but then we even have airlines named after beers these days, so i guess I'm not too surprised. But then I'm impressed by the fact that the 134 might have been a 'brand', that people might have thought of it as a cool airplane of that age..
This is the airplane in question..this particular airframe was in east german interflug service. i like it for the fact that it looks like a scaled down version of the 154 minus the number two engine, plus the glazed nose. The nose was changed for the B-3, and it coulda looked a pretty decent RJ, but there are too few of them around. A lot are in business configurations apparently.


Tu-144 - The First SST..

Tu 144 Landing Video

Awesome video of the Tupolev 144 landing.. it was an awesome but ill fated plane. I sure wish it had as good a run as the Concorde. One of the airframes in storage was brought back to flight condition as part of a multilateral effort to research SST technology, dubbed the Tu-144 LL. The landing sequence is just mindblowing.. looks more like a fighter...

Old Hat..

Old Hat yeah, but still one of my favourite Banksy works...saw it again today so thought i'd post it.

Gogol Bordello..

Start Wearing Purple

Yet another band i discovered on my band trawls on the net.. i kinda like their sound, eastern european and gypsy influence.. bit of russian or ukrainian in the lyrics, and the total madness of it.

Rating - Θ Θ Θ Θ Θ/2

TED Videos

I've decided to post all the TED videos i can here, i just recently discovered them despite their having been around on public domain for a while now. Anyone who is a designer should see this methinks. actually everyone should see this. anyway.. here goes the talk by Sagmeister.


Liveries...9W and AI 737s

The new liveries of 9W and AI are kinda weird on some of their aircrafts methinks. Though i generally dont think much of the new 9W colors, they do look better on their 737s than their 777s. On those the blue part looks too long while on the 737s the colours are kinda balanced. The A330s are ok, cos i like the form of the aircraft anyway :)

But its just the opposite with AI it seems to me. The AI livery looks great on the 777s and even the A320s, surprisingly. But the 737 freighters seem kinda bloated and ugly like they probably are, since the livery isn't doing much on them anyways. And this has just bothered me somehow, dont even ask :)
Though again, for the record, the new livery looks ok on the A310 freighters. Wonder what the 747s will look like.. yeah, I cant wait to see those.

Iraq's Victory

If there is a better example for achieving the impossible than Iraq's victory over Saudi Arabia in the Asian Cup Football tournament, if there is a more inspiring example of sport as an uplifter, then I'm yet to see it. To come up with a ray of hope like that when the whole world seems to be screwing them is much better than winning on any other stage, especially where overpaid losers like beckham and rooney do. Congratulations is all I can offer, and I'm just a small voice that might not be heard. But yeah, congrats nonetheless.


A400M - Airbus Heavylift

This, in all its computer generated glory, is the new venture of Airbus, the A400M military transporter. It is aimed as a Hercules replacement, and considering there aren't too many in that category being developed right now, it is expected to have a decent run amongst the large number of Hercules operators who will be looking for a replacement pretty soon. It is a high performance bird, capable of mach .72 cruise at FL370. Four huge European turboprops power it, and these engines are not only more fuel efficient than turbofans, but are also more advanced as even propeller controls have been brought into the FADEC. Of course, this one is facing delays as well, but hopefully things wont go as bad as it did with the 380. Of course, I might as well state here that i believe that once the problems are cleared and she enters service this October, the 380 is gonna prove successful and more orders would follow. Meanwhile, some more A400M pics , all the best to this first dedicated aircraft of airbus military (after 310 and 330 MRTTs :) ). Can't wait to see her in the skies...Airbus flight decks are great as a rule, but this one further ups the ante. Twin HUDs too, btw.Hopefully a sight that's coming soon to an airbase near you :) Also, cant help but comment on the 3D renders released so far. They have been of great quality, giving an excellent idea of the aircrafts capabilities. I'm not saying that this is a guarantee of performance or anything, its just that airplane buffs can get a better idea and start having fun arguing on a.net :) Now if only they'd hire these same guys to do some renders on the XWB...


AI New Livery

There you go, pics of the soon to be created AI merged entity aircraft. The livery is not as good as the old-new one, which was to have been for AI alone, but it has its fans too and I guess these things are rather subjective. The pics are of VT-ALC the third 772, VT-EQT A310, which has been converted to cargo configuration in germany for AI Cargo, and an A320 VT-PPA for what was Indian Airlines. The merger announcement is expected this month itself, and AI beat 9W to the post by starting their Nonstop to JFK from BOM on August 1st, (Jet starts on Aug 5). All the best to them. I would have loved to see an A340 in the new livery, but that is not to be. I do hope they get A380s and not the 747-8.

The Mongrel

Did a bit of exploration on surface modeling in Rhino 4 and this is what I ended up with. I christened it 'Mongrel" 'cos it resembles a lot of planes i know and love :) Especially the Rafale. Will do more work on it in terms of detailing and then rendering, soon as I can find time. I suppose I had a ground attack fighter in mind considering the upturned nose.