I Knew Eclipse Was a Shadow When Most Others Thought it Was Rahu’s Revenge on the Sun!

  This post appeared in the Under the Lens column of RaagDelhi web magazine on 27th December 2021. It is being reproduced here, with minor modifications. I am Mitabuddhi. I lived in the city of Kusumapura (कुसुमपुर), the capital of the Gupta kingdom. The great Guptas’ empire was in decline, yet the kings followed the tradition of patronizing scholarly activities and giving high regard to those engaged in the pursuit of knowledge. Narsimhagupta was on the throne during my adulthood. It was 1500 years back.   Though my colleagues in the gurukul gave me this demeaning epithet of being a dullard, what makes me proud is that I was one of the disciples of Acharya  Aryabhata. He was not a spiritual thinker or a saint, but he was venerated as much as them due to his erudition concerning physical sciences, mathematics and astronomy. Being an ordinary student, I seldom met him, but all of us knew about his spectacular accomplishments in these disciplines.  It was common know

Web 3.0: For Better or For Worse?

This post appeared in the Under the Lens column of RaagDelhi web magazine on 11th January, 2022. It is being reproduced here, with minor modifications. 5G and 6G are supposed to make humans connected to one another and to the digital world in unforeseen ways. We see people talking about virtual reality videos, deeply immersive games, machines talking to each other, and other scientific-fiction stuff riding on this anytime-everywhere-connected world.  Out of the humongous expanse of emerging technologies, let us pick up a small and more grounded area for today’s discussion: the World Wide Web. And we can relate with it all the time, because we now draw all our information from it.  For the sake of clarity, let me define the World Wide Web before we discuss its future prospects. The World Wide Web or ‘the web’ is nothing but the collection of information that the online technologies can create and access using web technologies.  The buzz in this area is that a new t

Court of the Grandchildren - book review

Court of the Grandchildren , written by Michael Muntisov and Greg Finlayson is a book set in future, is realistic and not sci-fi in the sense of technology dominating everything else. In fact, a number of key characters prefer humans as compared to androids (AI based human-like robots), which are everywhere and available for all jobs. The book talks about climate change caused by the present generation and how it is judged three generations from now, and how their actions will be judged by their grandchildren. It shows how the best actions taken today (in the face of competing pulls and pressures) may not be enough to stop environmental disasters from happening.  The book also explores human emotions and relations, especially in the age of androids. It is true that technology will start taking over all space in our homes, offices and society. Even for sex, there will be androids. Thus people will conduct themselves in ways that may be very different from today's. Even then, some m