Monday, March 31, 2014

F1 Malaysian GP 2014

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Malaysia GP 2014 - who has the best drink?

Just saw something funny on twitter.

First Redbull tweet this -

Then Mercedes respond -

Marc Cox (McLaren Mechanic) says in an unrelated tweet) -

GrandPrix Diary suggests it's time for Beer -

But Pastor has the right juice!

Monday, March 17, 2014

F1 Australian GP 2014

The entire story captured on this timeline - 

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Trick to convert Miles to Kilometres and vice versa

The interesting thing about Miles are that they are approximately 1.6 times a Kilometre. So, what? Well as it turns out 1.6 is known as the golden ratio or the ratio between two consecutive fibonacci numbers. Fibonacci numbers are in the following sequence

0, 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55 etc..

That is

1 + 0 = 1
1 + 1 = 2
2 + 1 = 3
3 + 2 = 5
5 + 3 = 8
8 + 5 = 13

Now, dividing the two consecutive fibonacci numbers gives you approximately 1.6. ie.  13/8 is 1.625.

So, now if you take 3 consecutive fibonacci numbers, then the lower one will be the distance in miles and the upper one will be in kilometres.

That answers the question of how long is a 5K Run? Its the previous fibonacci number - 3 i.e 3 Miles (approximately. The real distance is 3.1 miles).

How long is 50 kms? Approximately 31-32 miles... (55 is 34 miles. Now subtract 5 kilometers i.e 3 miles).

How long is a marathon? 26 miles. That means its 21 + 5 miles therefore, 34 + 8 kms which is 42 kilometres. Neat huh!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

How to pick a great bottle of wine

Here's a great Infographic on how to pick a great bottle of wine. See -

But the best part is where the flowchart leads to Vodka or Whisky. A Single Malt, esp. an Islay Scotch like Laphroaig would do very nicely, and it is definitely the preference but always in small quantities. The smoking aftertaste is just something that lingers and now my mouth is watering..

Hmmm... No Scotch at home right now unfortunately.

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

GT Racing 2 - mastering rear wheel drive cars


GT Racing 2, the game (Apple App Store - & Google Play) can get really difficult once you buy a RWD or rear wheel drive car. The funny thing is that you need to pay Cash to buy and not Coins. Since, Cash is difficult to get, this get fairly annoying as you lay down your hard earned Cash points only to get a car which is more difficult to drive and seemingly slower than the all the other cars that you have bought and driven before.

What happening?

All the starter cars are FWD or Front Wheel Drive. This means the power from the engine is given to the front wheels. IRL, all "family" cars are usually FWD because they are safer. They are easier to drive, and generally understeer. So, you don't end you losing control if you hit the accelerator too early in a turn. GT Racing 2 simulates this pretty much. So, with your starter cars on GT Racing 2, you often struggle to make stiff corners without hitting the barriers unless your speed is low.

With RWD cars, the behavior is different. Power is feed to the back wheels of the car and not the front. The real advantage of RWD cars is that they have better traction. That means they accelerated faster and are able to hit top speed pretty quickly. They essentially 'push' a car because the power is given to the back. This comes with a price though. If you accelerate while turning, then its very easy to oversteer. In GT Racing 2, this effect is pretty much in place and as a result the car that you put up Green cash for, is now very twitching. Plus, if you have both steering and brake assistance on, then mysterious the car does NOT accelerate even when you are on a straight or slight curve.

That's because you could be off the best line (as indicated by the green arrows) and the steering assistance is trying to get you back on it. Since its trying to steer the car, and its accelerating, there is a tendency for the car to oversteer and hence the braking assistance kicks in, slowing you down. Before you know it all your starter cars are faster than then brand new car.


You need to master RWD. Period. Its not going to be easy though. I still haven't mastered it but here are some steps that I think will help.
  1. Try to drive as smoothly as possible and stay on the green arrows as much as possible. Being on the best line automatically means that you will be ready for turns in a smooth manner.
  2. Catch the car often. Its going to take practice but you will need to catch the car. Try to anticipate any oversteer and apply steering in the opposite direction just a bit. This will allow the car to settle into a line quickly and you will not crash into the barriers unnecessarily. Now, this is quite difficult and may seem like you are slower, but slowly you will build up your driving skills and hopefully be smooth enough such that you don't need to catch the car out of corners
  3. Rerun races with steering assistance off. This is a must. I found that the annoying braking assistance on straights does not come in if you turn off the steering assistance. The car doesn't try to get on to the best line by itself as a result and you will accelerate. That means even if you don't get on to the best line, you won't penalize yourself by slowing down.
  4. Get as much practice as possible. You will slowly improve over time and get better at driving the RWD cars.
  5. And finally, tune the car. The more handling upgrades, brake updates you install, the easier the car gets to control. The funny this is that once you get used to RWD, FWD cars just seem to be slow, unsteer all the time into an outer wall and in general, not as much fun!
That's it. Hopefully you will have fun with GT Racing 2. If you have any more tips, drop a comment. I would love to hear from you.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Michael Schumacher Ski Injury

Update 6 - 

Schumacher's condition stable but more information emerging about his accident.

Update 5 - 

Schumacher's condition stable after 3 nights in the hospital.

Update 4 -

Doctors said on Tuesday that Michael Schumacher has improved but not yet out of danger. Good to hear. Plus, an interview with Sabine Kehm - Michael Schumacher's Manager where she says that he was not even skiing at a fast pace and it was very very unfortunate that he hit the rock.

Update 3 -

The full press conference by the Hospital on Michael Schumacher. Having seen the video, its pretty obvious that the injury is very serious. Let''s hope and pray that he pulls through. Thoughts and prayers for him and his family.

Update 2 -

Michael Schumacher is still in critical condition. The doctors say that he has had lesions within his brain on both hemispheres. I'm not sure what that means though but the surgery was primarily to relieve pressure due to the bruising/swelling of the brain. More details on what is Intracranial Pressure is here (Gary Hartstein's blog - Twitter Handle @former_f1doc) and here.

Several F1 drivers, personalities and teams have wished him well and a speedy recovery on Twitter. (Shameless Plug - my twitter list for F1 is at Subscribe to it to get the latest on MS.) Plus, Ferrari have posted their wishes too.

Update 1 -

As per a statement from the hospital, Michael Schumacher arrived in a coma.
"Michael Schumacher suffered a serious head trauma and arrived in a coma, making it necessary for him to undergo a neurosurgical procedure."
Looks like he may have undergone need a second surgery but only has been performed so far. Professor Gerard Saillant is the doctor looking after him. He has undergone surgery overnight and shouldn't require another surgery.

Initial Story - 

Looks like MS's injury is pretty serious. He had a fall while skiing off-piste (i.e off country on unmarked slopes) and hit his head against a rock. According to the BBCJA and GPUpdate he is in an induced coma at the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Grenoble hospital. That's pretty serious. I'm not sure what serious but not life threatening means if he is in an induced coma.

I'm not a big fan of Schumacher's driving esp. in his Ferrari days given that I am a McLaren fan, but this is something that one doesn't want to hear or read about. He really was magnificent in his driving days and while the news is still coming in, one can only hope that he does well and recovers soon..

This reminds me of the death of Natasha Richardson who died in 2009 from a skiing accident. That was really tragic and I remember her role as the Mom in the Parent Trap. Hope Michael Schumacher pulls through; the main difference being that he wore a helmet unlike Natasha Richardson.