Update

First things first. Apologies to my regular readers for not being able to update my blog too often. I owe you guys an explanation and hence this post. I also regret not being able to help my entrance-exam traffic this year as much as I've done in the past years. I'll try to be more regular with my blog updates from now. ( Yes I know this is not the first time I've said this 😛 )

My last post dates back to January which was a very ordinary month. Just the usual college life, early morning lectures, which for a change, I did manage to attend. Then came the very busy month of February. I spent most of my time working either for Technosearch and Maffick 2011 or Excelsior 2011, the college magazine. The magazine was a big success. You can download an e-copy if you haven't checked it out yet. March was the month when life started getting easier. After Techo-Maffick '11 was over, the focus shifted completely to Excelsior '11. Being involved in designing it was a great experience. It was fun working with my buddy Anupum Pant who also happened to be the Chief Designer. Learnt quite a lot of new stuff in Corel Draw. March was also the month when I actually had to study a bit too 😛 . Moving on to the release of Excelsior '11 that was early in the month of April. Along with it came the realisation that the magazines are heavier than they look, specially when they are in bundles of 25. The month of April also meant that it was exam time. I completed my minor project on Building a home security surveillance system using the Lego Mindstorms NXT successfully but making the project report and getting it printed turned out to be a big PITA. The project coordinator literally made us work (for her) for extra credits; result to be out soon, hope it pays off. My exams and practicals were over in the first week of May and I've been in Delhi for last 12 days or so. I'll be here till the end of June before the commencement of my final year in college.

That's all about what I've been up to for the past few months. Now, I'll get to what I'm into right now. This weekend seems to have a lot of sporting events lined up. I've been following the 4th edition of the Indian Premier League and am supporting the Mumbai Indians as always. They have a big match tomorrow against RCB. Hope they manage to pull off a victory. I've also been following the French Open. Hope to see another Federer-Nadal final resulting in favour of Federer. I've been following Formula 1 a lot more ever since Michael Schumacher has come back from retirement. Sadly he doesn't have a car good enough to support his potential and he hasn't been in performing that well. Hope to see a better performance in the Monaco Grand Prix scheduled for this weekend. Needless to say the Indian in me supports Narain Karthikeyan too but again wish he had a better car to drive. Just to add to the list of sporting events this weekend, the UEFA Champions League final is also a big event to look forward too. I'm not much of a fan but I'll be supporting Barcelona for the final.

It feels good to rediscover the joy of blogging after a long break. It can be tough to get your mind working at times but once you get past that stage, its pure joy. I could go on and on about anything and everything and make this post look like it would never end but its getting really late so I should get some sleep now.

Formula 1 is back

It didn't go anywhere. It was just like it retired from my blog along with Michael Schumacher. Now that Michael Schumacher is finally back and this time, unlike the last season, he really is back. Michael Schumacher is back but not with Ferrari. Mercedes was the engine supplier for last season's winning constructor Brawn GP, under team principle Ross Brawn. Mercedes bought stake in the team and re-branded it as Mercedes GP. Michael Schumacher will be racing with a fellow German teammate Nico Rosberg. This all-German team hasn't performed that well in the first 3 races of the season.

The 2010 F1 season is 3 races down but is yet too see a real Michael Schumacher performance. I guess its gonna happen really soon probably in this weekend's Chinese Grand Prix. The cars look bigger and bulkier this year as they have bigger fuel tanks because refueling is not allowed in this season so the drivers need to start the race with enough fuel for the whole race. As I wait for Micheal Schumacher to get to his best, I have something nice to do on weekends again 🙂 . Although I do have my end-semester exams to worry about but I can spare a couple of hours in a weekend to watch Michael Schumacher race.

IPL is back and so am I

In case you're wondering where I've been for the past month or so, you're finally going to get an answer. I've obviously been busy with college. I had my 1st Minors in February-end. After that, I've been busy with Maffick and Technosearch work. After a very busy month that included 3 trips back home to Delhi separated by a very small time span, I'm finally free enough to update my blog. My current whereabouts? I'm in Delhi till 22nd March. Now that I'm at home, I get to watch Television more often and the hottest thing on TV these days is the 3rd edition of the IPL, which started on 12th March.

The latest edition of the IPL, has everything nice from the previous editions and some improvisations in addition to everything. One of the nice things from the last season that has continued is the Vodafone Zoozoo ads. The strategic time out, which was introduced last year has been modified. Instead of one 7.5 minute time out, there are two 2.5 minute time-outs now- one decided by the batting team and the other by the bowling team. 5 new venues, Cuttack, Nagpur, Vishakhapatnam, Ahmedabad and Dharamsala in addition to the 8 previous venues have been added in this season. The very popular IPL Horn/Trumpet is being used in this season as well. This year, its a slightly different horn that's played.

IPL is getting bigger every year. YouTube is the exclusive worldwide online video partner and you can watch live streaming of all matches with a 5 minute delay on http://youtube.com/ipl. Recently, Airtel was the streaming sponsor for a match and was offering free, automatic 2Mbps upgrade for Airtel broadband users on the IPL youtube channel to enhance the streaming experience 🙂 . The IPL 2010 matches are being featured in theaters too. You can watch all the matches, except the ones that are being played in your city ad-free in some cinema halls near you. This a really smart move and is something I had been waiting for. Watching a cricket match in a multiplex is a really nice experience. I'll be watching the Mumbai Indians vs Royal Challenger's Bangalore clash tonight at a multiplex 🙂 .

Another highlight of the IPL 2010 season was the debut of the Mongoose MMi3 bat designed specially for T20 cricket. The bat was unleashed on 19th March 2010 in the CSK vs DD clash. Mathew Hayden used the bat in the match and scored 93 off 43 balls.

The Mongoose MMi3 Bat

The Mongoose MMi3 Bat
The Mongoose MMi3 Bat

The mongoose MMi3 bat is a specially designed T20 bat. The blade is 33% shorter than a conventional bat and the handle is 43% longer. The bat claims to provide 20% more power and 15% more bat speed and gives the batsman an advantage. Mathew Hayden did play some nice, powerful strokes with his Mongoose MMi3 but it would be intersting to see the response the bat gets. People are gonna be skeptical before using this bat but I feel this really is going to gain popularity among other players.

This edition of the IPL is shaping up quite differently as far as the results are concerned which is expected looking at the nature of the T20 game. Personally, I'm supporting Mumbai Indians ever since the first season and hope they perform better than they did in the last 2 seasons.

Schumi Returns

While writing this paragraph of this post, I was thinking about how I used to spend my weekends in 2006 and before that, long before I started this blog. Every alternate weekend, I used to be glued to the Television at 4:30pm to watch live Formula 1 action. But at the end of the 2006 F1 season, something happened that changed the way things were. I am a BIG fan of Michael Schumacher. I don't use caps to highlight things too often but on this occasion it was absolutely necessary. Michael Schumacher retired at the end of the 2006 F1 season. Here's a short tribute to him, with clips of his last race-

I was not sure what would happen to my interest in F1 after Schumi's retirement. Initially my interest faded a bit in the absence of Schumi but I enjoyed watching a Ferrari win. The Brawn GP domination this season spoiled the show completely. I also started living in a hostel so couldn't catch up with the latest F1 action regularly. But 25th July 2009 turned out to be an eventful day with Felipe Massa crashing at the end of the 2nd qualifying session after a spring hit him at the top of his left eye. He got multiple skull fractures and questions started to raise on the safety of F1 drivers and the HANS device. Here's a video which shows how the crash happened. Note that Massa was knocked out as soon as the screw hit him. This can be seen from the fact that he crashed at full throttle.

Massa is alright now but won't be able to race for the rest of the season. Ferrari has asked Michael Schumacher to replace Massa for the rest of the season and he will be doing so. Yes, its true, Michael Schumacher is coming out of retirement. He announced his retirement at Monza in 2006 and in 2009 he will be racing in Italy again. I'm just waiting for the European Grand Prix qualifying at 4:30 pm on 22nd August. So are millions of Schumacher fans. All of a sudden my hunger for watching F1 has increased manifold. Everyone is waiting for Michael Schumacher's comeback and are expecting him to set the track on fire. So what should a die-hard Schumi fan do while he waits for the next 21 days. Just sit back, relax, get nostalgic and watch videos like this one-

I just hope Michael Schumacher races for Ferrari atleast till the end of this season.