Classical music geeks

I'm a bit of a classical string instruments nerd. I can't pay any instrument but I listen to classical music a lot.

Sempi and I like to name our trucks. Sempi goes for the classics like Mary Anne and Mike Mulligan. I usually go for Jacquline Du Pre, Yoyo Ma and Stradivarius. 

Me: So Yoyo Ma is driving the Stradivarius (the dump truck) and Jacquline Du Pre is digging the dirt with Guarneri (the excavator).

Sempi: Appa, Mike Mulligan and Mary Anne are driving up the hill and coming to the construction site.

Me: Paganini (the steam roller) is flattening the road. Perlman and Heifetz are pouring the concrete. 

Sempi starts struggling with the names at this point.

Sempi: What should we name our back hoe. 

Me: How about Beethoven? 

Sempi: Ok, we'll call it Beethoven Backhoei. But we'll use Backhoei for short. What do you think? 

Me: Nice try buddy, we're calling our backhoe, Beethoven.


My hope is that by the time he starts taking Cello lessons, he's already used to the names of big wigs.

Conversations about an 8 month old

Vian is starting to pull himself up. He stood up and tried to grab everything in his reach. 

Me: We shouldn't keep the water cup here. Vian might grab it.

Yoshi: We just have to keep an eye on him. You might think he has tiny T-Rex hands, but nooo. He's more like an octopus with tentacles.


Alphabet Race - a kid's game

TL;DR: I built a little truck "game" to teach my son alphabets.

I started watching http://javascript30.com a couple of days ago. It's a series of 30 videos that uses vanilla Javascript to do amazing things.

I have only done the first two videos in the series. Based on what I learned in those two videos, I decided to write a small game. My son is a fan of trucks, so I cobbled together a truck race that teaches him alphabets.

The game is written using the latest version of Javascript. It will not work in old browsers (sorry). It is not designed for tablets or phones, you need a keyboard to play this game.

Game: http://alphabetrace.itsybits.xyz/

Source: https://github.com/amjith/alphabet_race/

My goal was to create an educational game that is entertaining but not addictive. 

You can send me feedback about the game via twitter or email.

'Tis the season for giving

Some of you might know that I created a couple of open source projects that became successful.

I added a donate button to one of the project's homepage. A couple of days ago, I received a donation through that link (thanks, Daniel). This is the second donation I've received since it's inception. Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised.

My current job pays me well, so I decided to funnel the donation to the following charities. It's a small sum ($15) but it had a big impact. 

Solve Hunger: https://onetoday.google.com/p/pnvzxbtk

$5 to provide 4 meals for 5 school children.

Nepal Earthquake: https://onetoday.google.com/p/mjsxg_gq

$5 can provide 785 water purification tablets.

Clean water: https://onetoday.google.com/p/66rfdsta

$5 can provide clean water to 5 children for 3 months. Isn't that incredible?

If you happen to use pgcli or mycli and you're happy with it, consider making a donation. I promise to pick the best charities out there to contribute your donations. :)

Nostalgic Programming

For some unknown reason, I looked up GWBasic today and downloaded an emulator. GWBasic was the first programming language that I learned. I have fond memories of that language. I love the fact that I could switch to a graphics mode and start drawing circles and squares. 

After about 30 minutes of fumbling around, my muscle memory kicked in and I started to write a simple program to draw some shapes on the screen. I asked Sempi to sit with me and help me with the drawing. He wanted me to draw a truck, so I decided to give it a shot. 

He lost interest midway when I started looking up various commands in the programming manual, but I stuck with it. 

Here's the creation in all it's glory. 

Needless to say, I had a lot of fun. 

Broccoli and Carrot

A few weeks back while eating at a restaurant Sempi wanted me to tell him a story. I noticed he wasn't eating his vegetables, so I made up a story about these animals that lived in the forest and how they discovered Broccoli. When they ate broccoli they became strong and could lift heavy things. Then came carrots which made them fast. Somehow this worked and he polished off every broccoli and carrot in the plate. 

Recently we were playing with a hole punch and he was having difficulty piercing through some strong pieces of paper. So I helped him out and punched holes. He asked me if I've been eating broccoli. I said yes and told him that I'm going to eat all the broccoli in the house. Visibly disturbed by that he protested "But appa, I want some broccoli, can you please give me some broccoli next time?".

I'm supposed to feel bad for manipulating him into eating vegetables, but I have no regrets.

I want a baby

Sempi had this conversation with Yoshi yesterday. 

Sempi: Amma, when can I have a baby?

Yoshi: Well, you have to study hard. Finish your pre-school, then your elementary school, middle school and then high-school. Go to college, well that part is optional. Get a job, meet someone, fall in love and then you can have a baby. Most importantly you have to be at least 18 years old.

Sempi: Man, I'm never gonna have a baby.

Yoshi: Why do you want to have a baby? 

Sempi: So I can fiddle with my own baby monitor.

Previously, Yoshi had told him not to play with Vian's baby monitor and this is his solution. :)

My little helper

Sempi loves Vian. Vian thinks Sempi is the coolest guy ever. When Vian is crying and I've tried every trick in my book, I call Sempi for help. Sempi starts doing something funny (sing a song in gibberish or jump up and down on a mattress), immediately Vian starts laughing (not just a smile but a wholehearted laughter). Vian thinks Sempi is hilarious and Sempi loves to entertain Vian. It works out great for me. :)