Saturday, November 6, 2010

Quad-Biking over the weekend

A friend of ours (vdiv) is leaving Bangalore in less than a month, so we decided to give her a proper send off.. The original plan was to go Quad Biking in the morning and then Paint Balling in the afternoon and then a movie in the evening.. due to the fact that we are all in our late 20s.. and not as energetic as we used to be :P we decided to just go quad biking and then relax through the rest of the day and then catch a movie.

Here are some clips from the quad biking we did at the DirtMania track here in Bangalore.

The first rider is Arvind Prabhakar, the second one is one of the DirtMania guys showing us how its done.

The blue bike is a 600cc monster that only two of us took for a spin. the rest of us were satisfied with the 300cc ones - like the one you see one of the DirtMania crew riding in the video above(guy in red tee).

(this smaller yellow bike is a 300cc bike with manual transmission - 4gears + reverse)

This clip has KT Thomas going nuts with the 600cc

Most of us struggled to get a hang of riding the quads.. mainly coz we're so hardwired for regular bikes.. but after a couple of laps you start to have fun. me and a couple of others did 2 laps on the regular ones and then did 2 laps o the one with the automatic transmission..

(this smaller blue bike is a 300cc bike just like the yellow ones but with automatic transmission)

Had fun there, coz we didn't have to bother about the clutch and gears and stuff(getting used to the accellerator "lever" and handling of the quad was enough of a chore) in the end we all had a good time.. in fact Divya, the young lady in whose honor we were doing all this had a blast, she blazed through the track faster than any of the boys :O

will post more pics as I get them..

For more info on DirtMania click here for their site.


Got these pics from my friend Naru.. fortunately he got a few of me on the Quads :)

Here they are

This is Naru racing uphill

Divya speeding away

Vinayak and KT racing

KT going crazy with the 600cc quad

Arvind on the same bike

and here's me

figuring out the pedals and stuff..

off to a crawl

after struggling on the first two laps with this quad..

decided to do the remaining two laps on the one with the automatic transmission

That DirtMania guy behind me probably thinks i'm a clown :P

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Matte Black Stealth Bike

Went for a meeting with a client yesterday. rode back with a friend on his bike...
we had a puncture on the way, and luckyly it happened on CBI road(bangalore) where there happen to be a lot of automotive supplies and mechanic shops..

so while the tire was getting fixed, we walked up and down the road and i picked up two cans of matte black paint. Kept one at work and took the other home with me.

on the spur of the moment .. sometime last night i decided to paint the bike!make it look like a stealth bike :)

will have to bring the other can home as well.. maybe buy another one.. for touch ups(old color still showing through in some places).

note: should have masked the pistons on the front forks as well :(

covered the whole bike last night(13 oct 2010)..

just a few nooks and crannies left.. will do that tonight,
and then take off the masking.. and shoot it in the morning :)

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

AR on Android

I was tinkering with this last week, thought i'd finally share it here..
for now there are two AR apps that load up 3d models(there are other AR apps on the market place, but they usually just super-impose text boxes and pics..(Layar, Wikitude, etc) Anyway, as part of my job is to develop crazy content for the web, i had been developing AR content based in papervision and flash for the past 4-6 months now.. so naturally i wanted to know how to do it for android :)

Here are the two apps-

AR App 1- UnifeyeDemo by Metaio
If you've read my previous posts on AR you might have come across the Mini Cooper AR experience, well that was done with Metaio's proprietery AR tools. so no surprise that they would have an android solution too :rolleyes:
anyway to get the app,
search for "unifeye demo" on the market,
or use this QR code

this will get you the app , but you'l also need to printout a few ar markers from their site here
This is what you get to see:

the model is fully textured, animated and has sounds too!

AR App 2- AndAR Model Viewer by tdomhan and suzyque
This is the only app i found that let you load your own 3d models on your phone..
you can search for "Andar Model Viewer" on the market,or click here

it comes preloaded with a few models of its own, and also lets you navigate the sd card to select your own 3d models(currently only supports OBJ files, but recognises most textures).. just remember to export your model with triangular faces.. it has issues with polygons of more than 3 sides.

i modelled this low-poly mech tank a while back,

and loaded it up successfully. converting it to obj took some work though.. a direct export from max doesn't work, inspite of selecting the "triangles" option

finally ended up exporting as 3ds and converting that file to Obj using Meshlab..

anyway heres what that looks like:

like i said it comes with a few models preloaded.. for some reason the textures were not loading on some of them. anyway it worked with my models..
to load your own obj files scroll down to the "select a model file" option

when you click it will use "OI File Manager" to navigate your file system, if you don't have it installed it will send you to the marketplace to get it..

after you install it just navigate to the file you want to load.. in my case its called "walker_phn_.obj"
note: the texture file should not have any special characters in the file name or it won't load.. hence mine is just called "walkeruv.jpg"

once selected, click ok, and then wait as it loads the file.. takes 10-15sec
and then
tadaa! of course my models alignment appears to be a bit off center.. but its loaded with textures nonetheless..



i know by now most people find AR to be quite gimmicky, but for me its always amazing to see :)
the downside for now is that OBJ files don't support animation.. :( so will have to wait for froyo.. then flash.. then will have to see if flash on android will support papervision or not..

blurry video of it in action - in video mode my point and shoot can't maintain focus on the screen.. keeps auto focusing on the shiny phone and reflections and stuff

UPDATE (April13 2011) :

as per request, ive added the 3d models and texture maps i used, for you all to try out. remember to put all three (.obj , obj.mtl and .jpg files)onto the root directory of your sd card
right click and save this link -

Thursday, May 27, 2010

The Chevrolet Beat was in Transformers2!

Was watching a review on overdrive, and thats where they first mentioned it.. so i checked with a copy of the movie i had on my computer and sure enough!

the character is the Autobot Skids

it occured to me that all transformers characters have the almost mandatory the toy version.. and lo and behold..

the other dark orange/red one is his brother Mudflap who is a Chevy Trax in this movie.. but is apparently supposed to be a black and orange chevy beat in transformers 3.

and its as dusty as my Beat :P
which almost never looks this clean -

Kane and Lynch2: Dog Days Trailer - welcome to Shanghai

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Old Blog

For older posts please visit the older blog at 

Friday, January 29, 2010

Caviar Black Chevrolet Beat

Our 2 day old chevy.

We almost didn't buy this beauty coz we thought it was a 3 door.. and we were looking for a family car.. then a few weeks back we spotted a chevy showroom near our house, and drove by to see if the Beat was on the floor.. it was, so i went in to check it out. Noticing the two back seats, i asked the sales guy- "how do you get in the back seats?".. and lo and behold he opened the back doors with the magically disguised door handles(seamlessly integrated into the window frame).. :lol:

we didn't like any of the colours they had it in, so we just ordered the "caviar black".

UPDATE: heres the review of the car now that i've had it for a while

mine is a petrol vehicle so heres my review on that(for diesel or more detailed reviews click here

Pros: great for city driving(i drive to work everyday) and long distance(have driven from bangalore to goa with 4ppl and 1 big dog in the car). Mileage with ac is good(16 in city with ac, 19-20 on highway with ac) when used with Automatic Climate control.. otherwise same as any other ac car.

Chevrolet engine is sturdy and have had no mechanical problems in the last 2+ years

Cons: not for hills. during a recent trip to ooty, i discovered that the pickup is dreadful on steep hills. was ok once we were in ooty.. traveling to coonoor was fine.. coming back was great as well.. just the climb up to ooty was crap.

in fact for hills i can only recommend maruti vehicles

Chevrolet's service is nothing great.. infact they are quite un-helpful. after my free services were done, i just went back to my local general mechanic.. that guy is super polite, friendly and drops me home when i drop off the car and brings the car back to my place for no extra charge.


A year after I got my Beat, Chevrolet launched the Diesel variant.
The main differences between the two are as follows:

Beat PetrolBeat Diesel
Cylinders, Type etc.4 cylinders3 cylinders
Displacement1,199cc /1.2litre936cc / 0.9litre
Max Power (PS@rpm)77.9 PS @ 6200 rpm57.1 PS @ 4000 rpm
Max Torque (NM@rpm)106.5 NM @ 4400 rpm142.5 NM @ 1750 rpm
Mileage (Kmpl)*18.625.44

The big glaring difference that is touted the most is of course the mileage. However one must accept that the mileage difference is not just because of some magical properties of Diesel. 
The smaller engine will always give better mileage than the larger!

Now while the mileage did tempt me to go for an exchange.. I realised that in the end.. After driving my dad's old 800cc Maruti.. a 1199cc Beat was a big improvement.. no way will I be happy with that kind of downgrade.

As a petrol Beat owner I find it hard to be unbiased.. hence to be fair to the Diesel variant, heres a comprehensive review of the vehicle by Overdrive.