Tarun Sukhani

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Recent posts by Tarun Sukhani

I will take over the world by... 2011.
19 years ago
Differential GPS
When you measure the distance to four located satellites, you can draw four spheres that all intersect at one point. Three spheres will intersect even if your numbers are way off, but four spheres will not intersect at one point if you've measured incorrectly. Since the receiver makes all its distance measurements using its own built-in clock, the distances will all be proportionally incorrect.

The receiver can easily calculate the necessary adjustment that will cause the four spheres to intersect at one point. Based on this, it resets its clock to be in sync with the satellite's atomic clock. The receiver does this constantly whenever it's on, which means it is nearly as accurate as the expensive atomic clocks in the satellites.

In order for the distance information to be of any use, the receiver also has to know where the satellites actually are. This isn't particularly difficult because the satellites travel in very high and predictable orbits. The GPS receiver simply stores an almanac that tells it where every satellite should be at any given time. Things like the pull of the moon and the sun do change the satellites' orbits very slightly, but the Department of Defense constantly monitors their exact positions and transmits any adjustments to all GPS receivers as part of the satellites' signals.

This system works pretty well, but inaccuracies do pop up. For one thing, this method assumes the radio signals will make their way through the atmosphere at a consistent speed (the speed of light). In fact, the Earth's atmosphere slows the electromagnetic energy down somewhat, particularly as it goes through the ionosphere and troposphere. The delay varies depending on where you are on Earth, which means it's difficult to accurately factor this into the distance calculations. Problems can also occur when radio signals bounce off large objects, such as skyscrapers, giving a receiver the impression that a satellite is farther away than it actually is. On top of all that, satellites sometimes just send out bad almanac data, misreporting their own position.

Differential GPS (DGPS) helps correct these errors. The basic idea is to gauge GPS inaccuracy at a stationary receiver station with a known location. Since the DGPS hardware at the station already knows its own position, it can easily calculate its receiver's inaccuracy. The station then broadcasts a radio signal to all DGPS-equipped receivers in the area, providing signal correction information for that area. In general, access to this correction information makes DGPS receivers much more accurate than ordinary receivers.

GPS Receivers
19 years ago

Originally posted by Gregg Bolinger:
My sister is wanting to travel to Thiruvananthapuram and the best info I could find for her on climate and weather conditions were:
Because of its nearness to the sea, the climate of Trivandrum is tropical. This also gives Trivandrum a very pleasant weather round the year. The average maximum temperature can go up to 36.2�C in summer months and to a minimum of 18.0�C in the winters. Monsoon comes to Trivandrum in the month of May and remains there until November.
If anyone else could enlighten me on weather conditions and best times to travel there, I would really appreciate it.

How is this information not sufficient? I've visited Trivandrum thrice, the last time just this year in January. Actually, I was doing the backwaters tour in Kerala, and visited Trivandrum after that. I think the best time to travel there is between December and February, with January being the best time of the year. The climate, like much of the region, is tropical, but from what I can recall, it was not as humid as I thought it would be. Overall, the weather is extraordinary - for me, it was around 28
C the whole time. Southern India generally has wonderful weather.
Hope this helps.
20 years ago

Originally posted by Joe Pluta:
I love it! MD as a SOLIDARITY MOVEMENT! Equating yourself with GANDHI? Oh my, Tarun, that's really quite special!

Um, Joe, do you know how to read? :roll: I'm asking only because I've noticed you seem to have a penchant for hyperbole and misrepresentation. Let's start off with MD as a solidarity movement. When did I imply, infer, or even state such a thing? All I said was that if Map felt so strongly about an issue, she shouldn't waste her time talking to the likes of you (and now I can see why!) She should find like-minded individuals who share her passion. I also find it uncanny that her reasoning seemed to mirror Gandhi's own early on in his legal career, namely that the British could be reasoned with, that ultimately they could be compelled simply through oral argumentation. Of course, we all know how that ended.
Secondly, how does stating that I learned a memorable lesson from Gandhi connote equivalence with said figure? So, by your warped logic, Martin Luther King Jr. is equating himself with Gandhi because he followed his example, right?

Actually, I get a kick out of the fact that Eugene, Map and Tarun are all mad at me... the most intransigent, unrelenting, argumentative folks here, used to getting their way and pummeling people with torrents of disputative dissertation, and because I actually don't just fold over, because I have the AUDACITY to disagree, I'm somehow the bad guy!

Blah..blah..blah...more hyperbole to add to your already astonishingly prodigious list of specious rants.

Map says I pick on her, Eugene says I'm trying to prove myself, Tarun says I'm a troll. Ravish, if you're willing to call me a nasty name, then I will have the entire Fab Four ticked off at once!
Some would consider that a career accomplishment, and it only took me a few months! Time to hang up the cleats while I'm at the top of my game, maybe get a coaching spot at a small cowtown in the panhandle. I'll do a couple Nike spots, maybe guest host SNL. I bet I make the hall on the first vote!

BTW, while you're revelling in your own hubris, I suggest you spare a few seconds of your seemingly precious time (yes, that was a sarcastic remark, a la Joe Pluta) to actually ruminate on the remarks you've made above. Now, put down the thesaurus..good boy, and actually pay attention to the following words: I never called you a troll..I used troll as a verb, and flame as well. You see, trolling and flaming is what you seem to be exceptionally gifted at. Pursue this to its logical dead end. And, as always, have fun!
20 years ago

Originally posted by Joe Pluta:

And why should I alter my opinion? My particular position happens to be the majority position among the general population here in the United States.

So was slavery at one time, what's your point? Just because it's a widely held opinion doesn't make it a sustainable policy. This is a bandwagon fallacy.

Of course, Tarun, your logic is impeccable - only discuss things with people who agree with you. Lots of growth potential there...

Lots of growth potential there..umm..yeah, you see, that's how solidarity movements are forged (btw, your puerile sarcasm is unjustified). If you actually paid attention to my other paragraph (you know, the one about GANDHI), you would have realized the underlying truth he figured out when he got his ass kicked out of a South African train - there is no point arguing with those who disagree with you. Better to form solidarity movements and effect change, which is precisely what millions of people around the world have been doing.
I am neither espousing nor denouncing the policies of the United States because I am in no position to change them. That is why I suggested to Map that argument with entrenched individuals such as yourself (and as you so eloquently pointed out, the majority of the US population) is a fruitless endeavor. If you believe in something strongly, then pursue it in a forum in which you can effect change.
Anyway, I'm signing off, you can troll or flame or whatever you do best.
[ October 26, 2003: Message edited by: Tarun Sukhani ]
20 years ago

Originally posted by Mapraputa Is:
"Heavens forbid" is a non-obvious but fairly standard construct indicating heavy sarcasm in whatever follows.
I think I read it as such! I thought Jason meant that there is no need to be particularly afraid to offend anybody. And my point was that we are not, so he should not worry.

Map, why do you insist on protracting an argument with an individual (Joe Pluta) who seems incapable of altering his opinion on the topic? I would suggest that this is an immense waste of time on your part.
A memorable lesson I learned from the teachings of Gandhi in his own dealings with the British is that there is no point arguing with individuals with entrenched ideologies. It is far better to ally oneself with those who share your opinion, and to effect change through such means. Do you think Gandhi would have accomplished what he did had he spent an inordinate amount of time arguing with the British?
20 years ago

Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
A scenario just as likely as the one above:
India 2050 - The exchange of nuclear weapons with Pakistan had left both countries devastated. Those that survived had open sores that would not heal. Most of the population was sterile from the remaining radiation and those that did give birth had children with such horrible birth defects that they were rarely born alive.

How about this more likely scenario:
Earth 2050 - A lifeless hulk of an orb is all that remains after the U.S. and Russia, with a combined nuclear stockpile of 20,000 warheads, several thousand tons of chemical and biological weapons, and a sundry assortment of conventional weaponry, finally come to the conclusion that they built these weapons for a reason: to blow the whole f**kin' world a quadrillion times over!
20 years ago

Originally posted by <I Killed Kenny>:
Actually those Pakis dropped the meteorite on India - now India will retaliate and bomb some villages along the Line of Control

Is <I Killed Kenny> Indian?
Sounds like it!
20 years ago
Freedom Fries may lose their "Freedom" and return to the "French" based on reports released from Washington. Oh my GOD! Whatever are we going to do now!
Folks, I for one will not stand for this tyranny (sorry, Freeranny)! We must keep the "Freedom" back in our fries! Also, I suggest we commandeer (oh sorry, I meant Freedomeer) the litany (oops, er, make that Freetany) of words that the French have stolen from us!
No more French tarts, it's Freedom tarts for us boys!
Forget French cuisine, it's Freedom cuisine from now on!
Hey, and just so those French bastards get the message, let's return that statue out there in New York to them. We can live without that, can't we? Come on patriots!
20 years ago

Originally posted by Jason Menard:

Read the whole thing if you want more context.
[ September 16, 2003: Message edited by: Jason Menard ]

I didn't have time to read the whole thing, but I did read enough to arrive at the following conclusions (please correct me if I'm wrong):
1) The research paper accepts that certain publications are liberal vs. conservative. That is, it doesn't set out to "prove" that they are partisan to one side or the other, just accepts that they are, and pleasantly goes along with its analysis. Again, my point remains - that is, who is deciding all this? This academic accepts that they are liberal vs. conservative just like you do.
2) The paper focuses it's analysis on editorials in publications. Well, aren't editorials SUPPOSED to be one-sided. What does that reveal about the subtle biases that may exist in the rest of the newspaper? It is in the editorials, in fact, where some event or issue invariably gets mangled, by both sides. I don't see the point in these editorials, except to one-up the other.
3) The paper clearly states that conversatives are more vehement about their respective arguments, far more than their liberal counterparts, and more importantly, are less amenable to self-criticism. That to me is interesting. It clearly shows that one side has a lot more at stake, and feels has a lot more to lose if "exposed", if you know what I mean

Anyway, if I'm off on anything, feel free to one-up me...
20 years ago

Originally posted by Mapraputa Is:
[QBI was thinking that you sometimes quote sources I would never do, and on the other hand, I can hardly imagine you quoting Noam Chomsky or Z Magazine (well, other than to disprove them ). [/QB]

Map, you forgot Alternet and The Progressive!
20 years ago

Originally posted by Jason Menard:

I think if you'll go back through the links I offer to back up arguments of mine, you will likely find "liberal" sources of news offered (BBC, New York Times, etc...) as often as "conservative" sources (National Review, etc...).
Btw Map, The Washington Post, New York Times, L.A. Times, are all generally considered news sources with a definite liberal bent.

It is "generally considered" that the The Washington Post and New York Times are "liberal" newspapers? By whom? I find it interesting that "conservatives" say these newspapers are "liberal", and "liberals" state that they are "conservative". So, who's right? Or is that even the point? I, for the life of me, still can't fathom what purpose this separation serves. I never understood it when I came to this country, and I still don't understand it.
Joe Conason, author of the best-selling new book �Big Lies: The Right-Wing Propaganda Machine and How it Distorts the Truth" and editor-at-large at The New York Observer recently stated in an interview that he feels both these news publications have become decidedly more "conversative", yet I'm sure that others, mostly "conservatives", would disagree.
I have watched in utter dismay certain truths get warped by members of both these supposed political ideologies, seeking to one-up each other incessantly. It's almost pathetic to witness.
20 years ago

Originally posted by herb slocomb:

Do you find this insulting, slightly insulting, yet amusing, or just amusing?

Actually, I just found it inane, kind of sophomoric. Seems like Scott Adams is restraining himself so as not to appear offensive.
20 years ago

Originally posted by Mapraputa Is:
who tend to ally themselves strongly with the notion of "nationalism" often resent criticism of American policies both domestic and abroad.
But isn't it largely a tautological statement? What is the difference between "nationalism" and "patriotism", by the way?

Did you mean that "nationalism" and resenting criticism of one's country are one and the same (they are equivalent)? If you did mean that, then my reply is: not necessarily. However, it is my personal belief that this is unfortunately what the term has evolved to be in the current discourse, so I suppose you are correct.
I was trying to convey that many Americans who openly profess "love" for their country often are resistant to contrarian views. Is it necessarily the case that "love" for one's country = resistance to criticism? I don't think so, since I love India, and criticize it all the time! I also welcome constructive criticism from others, since I truly want my ancestral home to prosper. When I arrived in America, I thought the same would be true of most Americans I met, but this turned out not to be the case. Interestingly, my own cousin who has lived in India all his life (but now resides in the states) is also critical of India, sometimes even more than I am, yet he is an Indian national and considers himself "nationalistic".
I do have theories to account for these observations, but I don't have time to discuss them.
As for the distinction between "patriotism" and "nationalism", I always felt that "patriotism" was just the American "flavor" of "nationalism".
Anyway, my 2 cents...
20 years ago
Without getting too much into this topic, I will simply state that in my own experience, I have observed that those who tend to ally themselves strongly with the notion of "nationalism" often resent criticism of American policies both domestic and abroad.
Also, Al Franken is hilarious...I love his new book.
20 years ago