Posted by: Kushal Ashok | March 22, 2014

Flarry Harry Android Gaming Application Review

Image

Being an android user, I get to choose from a large pool of options when it comes to mobile gaming applications. While going through some new launches, I came across this game called Flarry Harry. Though The name of the game is itself a USP for it, there are various other things that make me play this game from time to time. This post is to state all those reasons and present to you the importance of simplicity.

1) It’s Easy!

In the virtual age of gaming, we are getting into more and more complex gaming scenarios, but if you look at the recent trends, people who are working in a multinational company, or those who are quite busy with their ongoing schedules, seldom take out time to play such challenging games. If they are supposed to go through some tutorials and brush up their skills before they could enjoy the game, the point of gaming for taking their time off gets destroyed. On the other hand, Flarry Harry is an android game that is easily understandable and is still quite inviting. All you have to do is tap your fingers timely and enjoy the journey crossing the hurdles one after the other.

2) It’s Small

The high-end games that we talked about in the last point can usually range anywhere in size from 50 MB to 4146MB, as other than the hosted app, they can also use 2 expansion files which are again limited to 2GB each. This makes the installation process quite cumbersome. Also, when you decide to uninstall the files, you have to get rid of all the temporary files and expansions as well. But when we talk about Flarry Harry, the application occupies a mere space of 3.1 MB on your phone. This in turn ensures that your phone’s performance will not get affected due to the installation as it is occupying very less memory.

3) It’s Free

The best thing about most of the popular android applications is that they are free and so is Flarry Harry. That is the reason, android users are so satisfied with the market as they always find an application that meets their requirements and gets installed for free. So unlike apple market, users don’t have to use their credit cards and a simple click of a button will get them what they want. In addition to this, web users can also browse through the applications at the Google Play Store and click on Install button if their phones have been configured with the same account as the one they are using for logging in online.

This game is one of a kind and will surely remain installed in my phone for a long time. I like to get involved with it when I get free time, whether it be standing in a queue, travelling far distances and sometimes even while attending unimportant calls; if you know what I mean ;). Kudos to the developer!

Get It Now

Posted by: Kushal Ashok | March 10, 2014

Movie Review: Highway 2014

Highway Poster

I gave this movie a rating of 8/10, because it made me think about things that I once pondered upon but then forgot. In the daily rush of life, we often get so involved with our tasks that we forget what we were aiming at. There comes a point in the lives of most of us, when we are performing mundane tasks just for the sake of it. The best way to learn if this is true, is to sit alone and think; why are you doing this? What was your goal when you started? What all things have changed? Do you think what you are doing is not making you happy? Once you find these answers, you will know what you have to do next and more importantly, what you need to stop doing.

This movie is another form of such a philosophy. If you believe in free spirit, if you were once confident about your life’s aim, go watch this movie, and it will help you get back on the right track.

P.S.: Happiness is the answer!

More reviews at: http://www.imdb.com/user/ur23208665

Posted by: Kushal Ashok | March 10, 2014

CHD Citi Center Video Branding by Lifeiscool Media

Video Branding for 10 Acres of Premium Retail Space CHD Citi Center at VIP Road Zirakpur by Lifeiscool Media.

At Lifeiscool Media we believe in creating unforgettable experiences for our clients. if you have a brand, we can take it out to the masses in the most creative ways possible.

Posted by: Kushal Ashok | January 8, 2014

Defining Toastmasters with Infographics

I was preparing a sales pitch for introducing the idea of Toastmasters to my audience. That is when I decided that I shall use the most popular medium of conveying information these days, called infographics. I started off with a google search which took me to the list of tools at hongkiat.com. I first created an infographic by providing my Linkedin profile details to vizualize.me. After going through a few more options and watching some videos, I finally started working on easel.ly. This post has some of the infographics that I created with this online tool within an hour or so. I am planning to use them in my presentation about Toastmasters and will be looking forward to the audience’s response.

Transcript:

“Every day above ground is a good day.” But what makes that day better is something that you can decide. After working for more than 9 hours (on clock) you need something to make you feel better. Unless you are an Apple developer with a 7-figure salary, your job is not going to do that for you. Toastmasters international has given us an opportunity to do just that; to come out of our 6 by 6 cubicle and use our voice to communicate our thoughts. Yes, this cannot happen over a Virtual classroom session, and yes this does not need a 6 digit passcode. But the way we interact in this room is far more clear and meaningful than any of the conference calls that you have attended today. And we are not alone in this. We have more than 292,000 comrades spread over the globe. That is more than twice the population of our favorite holiday destination Shimla. There are about 14,350 clubs functioning now in 122 different countries. Today I am going to put many such facts in front of you and let you decide the definition of a Toastmaster.

Toastmasters map

So where did this all begin from? There must be someone who thought about this first. Do any of you know the name of that person? Yes. It was in 1924 when Mr. Ralph C. Smedley organized the first ever Toastmasters meeting in Santa Ana, California. It took him two years to open a second club in the same city but then it gained momentum and within a year, the federation of toastmasters clubs was established. With the number of clubs increasing, it became difficult to keep up similarity, to follow the same rules. Because no matter how well you communicate with a person, you can never create a carbon copy of your thoughts in his mind. That is when the first manual for Toastmasters clubs was introduced in 1928.

In 1930, Toastmasters International got incorporated and the newsletter was rolled out. Thus it was clear that clubs were being formed outside of United States. The first of which was chartered in British Columbia, Canada. With more and more clubs being chartered, in just 8 years the count reached a 100. Remember that when I refer to 8 years as ‘just’, I am talking about chartering 100 new clubs when the task of introducing the idea of Toastmasters was totally different from giving a power-point aided presentation. And with the advent of the 100th club, began the inter-club speech contest.

30 years went by, and Mr. Smedley continued serving this non-profit educational organization. Thus, in 1963 he was acclaimed with the Golden Gavel award. After 2 years, he died; but he left an idea; an idea that we all are celebrating here today; an idea that has changed thousands of lives. But did you know that Toastmasters clubs were only open to men? It was only in 1973 when women were welcomed as club members. And as I will show you with the help of my next graphic, this gender base got quite strong.

As with the timeline, technology was developing fast. In 2007, the toastmasters.org got completely redesigned. Though I am not very impressed with the present design either; I felt better when I learned that not only a twitter feed was launched, but also an e-learning platform was developed in the year 2009. Finally in the year 2011, a major step was taken which is most important for any brand’s development. A unique logo was designed and was propagated to all the clubs via various brand refresh techniques such as the video brand contest.

Toastmasters International Timeline

When I compared the member count to the population of Shimla, I was talking about a specific group of people. So definitely, we need to look at who these people are. In contrast with the fact that women started joining 50 years late, the average percentage of female members in a Toastmasters club is 52%.

It is often said, “Behind every successful man there is a woman”. But in this case, along with every successful man, there was a successful woman. This fact gets established when we look at the average annual income of toastmasters which ranges from 50,000 to 75,000 dollars. 30% of these members earn more than 100,000 dollars annually. And I assure you that I am not talking about billionaires like Dhirubhai Ambani or Subhash Chandra Goel who never attended any college. Most of these members have a Bachelor’s degree and 35% of them have completed their masters too. These masterminds are working at renowned corporates like Google, Apple, Sony and Disney.

Toastmasters member demographics

So what makes you a Toastmaster? I mean, who is a Toastmaster? What does this person do? I will take the help of this Venn diagram to explain. The three essential ingredients are confidence, voice modulation and content. To have an effective stage presence you need proper gestures that you can use while showcasing your acting skills. Your expressions play an important role in convincing your audience. You should try practicing in front of a mirror and learn when to change the pitch and tone of your voice. While such practice sessions help you remember the content, only with experience can you meet mastery. And as you gain confidence, the importance of the other factors starts reducing. For instance, if you don’t have this big pie of content ready. Just take part in the table-topics and try to speak impromptu. At the end of the day, this wish to speak is what makes a toastmaster.

About a Toastmaster

Reference: Wikipedia and toastmasters.org

Posted by: Kushal Ashok | January 2, 2014

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,600 times in 2013. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

 

Posted by: Kushal Ashok | June 18, 2013

Motorcycling from Chandigarh to Kasauli

This video was shot during the breakfast ride from Chandigarh to Kasauli organized by Bikerzone.

Posted by: Kushal Ashok | June 1, 2013

Ring the bell

One person adds up to one million but the change doesn’t stop with that million, there are billions out there who are yet to change. But before we conclude that we need the change, let us speculate the present conditions.

In the metropolitan city of Delhi women don’t feel safe as they are told every day how vulnerable they are. It’s not that the news channels are exaggerating the issue but in reality the women feel unsafe. Some won’t start a conversation with a stranger even when they are in dire need. All they can expect is terror and violence and some have already started learning self defense. I chose the example of Delhi because it is the city where most incidents have occurred in the recent past. But the problem is not just with one city, it is everywhere. The following pictures were clicked in Sector 17 Chandigarh when a candle march protest was held after Delhi gang rape.

Image

Image

Man is called a social animal, but sometimes I fear that we are not social any more. Even animals have a sense of faith which has been observed and proven. (You can learn about it at mother nature work) Then why has man become so unfaithful? Why a daughter can’t trust her own father? Why a girl has to feel like an object put on display?

There is no one single answer to these questions. All these things are inter-related and we need to find a solution which works for all. Whether it be Delhi or Patna, girl or boy, young or old, we need to make sure that the change effects everyone everywhere.

We can start with common habits. The advertisement industry has got more creative and can inculcate good behavior by using themes like following:

A girl has been feeling low all day and her parents take her to a social gathering even though she has got no interest. They pick up their neighbors and drive to their destination. They all did their chit-chat on the way while the girl sat silent. As all are excited about the party they quickly get off while the girl is sitting alone on the back seat, feeling weird. Just then a boy who was traveling along, opens the door for her with a smile on his face. The girl can’t stop herself from smiling. The sense of importance and respect given by the boy, changes her mood and the moment she gets off the car she is ready to party.
“A gentleman would always treat women with respect.”

This can be an ad for men’s wear or the car itself. (I am not sure)

Already we have people with great ideas which resulted into ads like these:

The most basic thing we can do is to give respect to women. Reading the news-paper and calling names to the culprits, to the government and to the mother land is not going to solve anything. We need to think because we have been given the power to think, we need to act because we have been given the courage to act and we we need to be strong because the dark side has always got more heads. A simple example would be the way war heroes are being treated in Bengal: War heroes or rape victims?. If only the society (that is us), would understand the very basic norm of humanity we all can solve the problem for sure. Let alone humanity, the basic sagacity can save us from such disasters. God has given us a brain, the instrument that made us the master of our planet. Why not use it constructively?

All I can say for now is that we all have some good and some bad inside us. There are also parts of our country where women are treated with utmost respect. There are people who have died for such causes and are relentlessly fighting for the right. We all need to bring the change together and we all need to play our parts by understanding the problem and making our decisions accordingly. If you are reading this article, then you are definitely acquainted with the problem. The change that I have been talking about starts with you. If you can make sure that all women in your family are treated with respect, then you have brought the change. If you can make sure that you will stop or report any incident of wrongdoing without making any excuses, then you have brought the change. If you can make sure that you would think about the severity of the problem and ways in which it can be solved, then you have brought the change.

There is hope and there is light, we just need to reach the other end of the tunnel.

Girl lighting candle

Posted by: Kushal Ashok | May 25, 2013

Solo ride to Chail

Image

During the past few months I have spent a lot of time in office and the only time I spent with myself was in gymnasium.  I like to wear myself out during the day so that when I hit the bed at night I don’t have energy to think and can simply crash. As there were too many thoughts and too less of time to process them, I didn’t bother.

23rd May 2013 (Thursday), 11 pm:
It was not Friday but I got into the weekend mood, picked my motorcycle keys and stormed out. My backpack contained just a water bottle and my mobile charger. I was wearing the gloves as well as the mask which helped in holding the earphones in the right place. I had not decided where I would go yet, and simply turned on the music. The song made me pull the throttle harder and I was on the Himalayan Expressway in no time.  Learning from my last ride to Shimla, I got the tank re-filled at the first petrol pump even though I almost missed it and had to take a U-turn.

Though I was driving at an average speed in the beginning, there was no looking back after crossing the timber trail. Whether it be a truck driving on the wrong side or a fellow speedster overtaking on a curve, nothing could stop me. It was an assiduous effort to get high; as high as 2,444 m which I achieved eventually. Shimla was just 30 km away when I slowed down at a check-post and looked at the sign boards. The name ‘Chail‘ struck me as I had heard about it from my friends and probably read about it online as well. This made me realize that I had never been to Chail, and hence began my exploration.

The road got narrower and the turns got sharper but there was less change in my speed. The first few miles were easy as I was driving down the hill. As it was past midnight other vehicles were seldom met and thus I started using both sides of the road. It helped in speeding through the curves and getting the adrenaline rush used. The road was not well maintained and I almost skidded through the gravel sometimes but it was all intended. Finally I reached my destination which was a sleeping town. I parked my bike near the post office and started walking. The night was so quite, I could hear the wind playing with the dry leaves. As I lied down and looked at the stars, I started thinking and got overwhelmed with memories. I stayed there for 30 min, took a picture for my XCD collection and kick started my return.

The battery of my phone was running out so I could no longer play the songs. I was more relaxed while coming back and took halts to absorb the view. One of these stops was just 3 miles from Sadhupul where I noticed the Himalayan prayer flags tied across the trees. I often wonder what it could be that inspire the people to make these flags, climb up the tree and hang them with the rope. These flags were not put there for decoration, they carried wishes and blessings. I have always been mesmerized by them and thus continued my self-talk.

There were instances when I reached crossroads and had to search for a sign. Most of the times I just trusted my intuition as it anyways didn’t matter where I reached. I noticed later that I had used a longer route to Chail as I could take a turn from Solan instead of Kandaghat. The purpose of this ride was to get one with myself, to be alone and to spend some time with ME.

P.S.: I hope I’ll be able to follow my heart and trust my intuition when I face more crossroads in life.

Older Posts »

Categories

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,497 other followers

%d bloggers like this: