Friday, February 29, 2008

Ray Kurzweil

Ray Kurzweil is an inventor and futurist.One of the most radical figures in the field of technological prediction Kurzwiel is also known for his initiatives in various fields of computing, such as optical character recognition - the technology behind CDs - and automatic speech recognition by machine.He is one of the scientists among the group of 18 scientists who have been assigned to identify the greatest technological challenges facing humanity.According to Ray Kurzweil the time to come will see artificial intelligence as par with human intellect and that machine will outcast han in their intellectual abilities while solving intractable problems.

Brain Science Centre

Central government of India is planning to set up India’s first Brain Science Centre for Forensics, CBSF directly under the Central Forensic Scien Laboratory, Delhi, Ministry of Home Affairs.CBSF would be established in the campus of State Forensic Science Laboratory, Bangalore but it would be directly under central government and would be applied for forensics including brain mapping, polygraph, narco analysis test, MRI, EEG and ERP etc.Center is also planning to sep up MRI machines and DNA printing for forensic purpose.

National Science Day

Every year February 28 is celebrated to mark the discovery of ‘Raman Effect’ by celebrated scientist Sir C.V. Raman this day in 1928 which brought the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1930.It was the initiative of National Council for Science & Technology Communication, Department of Science & Technology, Government of India, by which the day was designated as National Science Day in 1987 for the first time.The day is also to inculcate scientific temperament among students, young scientists through close interaction by conducting lectures, seminars, symposia of various disciplines, which creates awareness among all regarding latest developments in science and technology. Such activities hold much importance as these should be disseminated to the next generation.With such an emerging scenario and competitive economy it has become necessary to understand the ever changing requirement of common man and build up appropriate technology and skills to make the life of human more easier but at the same time adding longevity to earth’s life.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

IIT-JEE 2008

Hundred Percentile Education Private Limited, the provider of educational technology solutions announced the launch of its new offering "Know your IIT-JEE Rank" through its successful IIT-JEE preparation portal . This new feature, appropriately timed when there are few weeks to go for the IIT-JEE 2008 actually provides students a near real-life simulation wherein they can appear for previous years IIT-JEE papers online and benchmark their preparation level against previous years' cut off scores.

Quota for SCs/STs in MBBS, BDS

The Union Government has decided to introduce reservation for Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes candidates in undergraduate medical and dental courses from this year under the all-India entrance examination. With the introduction of the quota, nearly 310 SC and 155 ST students will benefit this year. In 2007, the total number of MBBS/BDS seats was 2,075, which were filled on the basis of merit.The CBSE will conduct the preliminary test for the all-India entrance exam on April 6 and the final on May 11.

IIM fee hiked

Studying at the IIMs will be costlier this year onwards with three management institutes namely IIM-Calcutta, IIM-Ahmedabad and IIM-Bangalore increasing its fees. The tuition fees in IIM-C has increased from Rs 2 lakh to Rs 3 lakh for academic session 2008 to 2010. Again next year, the fees will again surge by an additional one lakh and students will have to pay Rs 4 lakh for enrolling in the esteemed institute.The tuition fees at IIM-C has been brought at par with IIM-Ahmedabad. IIM-A has already raised its fees from Rs 2 lakh to a whopping Rs 3 lakh. IIM Bangalore on the other hand, has increased its fees from Rs 2.5 lakh to Rs 2.74 lakh.In 2007, IIM-C raised its tuition fees from Rs 1.75 lakh to Rs 2 lakh while IIM-A had raised its tuition fee from Rs 1.77 lakh to Rs 2 lakh. But IIM-B chose to increase its fee by Rs 75,000 and fees were increased from Rs 1.75 lakh to Rs 2.5 lakh. The board has also decided to increase the family income limit from Rs 2 lakh to Rs 4 lakh, for meritorious and financially weak students


CBSE have proposed to allow students who fail in Mathematics to appear for another subject in lieu of his compartment examination. The governing body has cleared this decision and this will come into force from this year. 20 per cent of the question paper will be dedicated to checking Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS), there will also be 10 per cent questions that will be very short answer type.Some portions of the question paper are actually meant for the below average students who may find it difficult to answer some of the higher range questions.Also for the first time, students will be marked internally by schools based on the project work they do in a subject like Mathematics in Class X. So there is another chance to gather marks, provided you actually pay attention to the subject. And then you also have practicals for subjects like Social Studies and Mathematics, apart from science subjects.The National Curriculum Framework, 2005, had recommended certain changes in the examination pattern to turn it into a more meaningful assessment of what a child has actually learnt, rather than a simple rote learning-based exercise.Over 13 lakh students are appearing for the board exams this year. While 7,65,095 students would appear for the class X exam 5,48,815 would for the class XII, which begin on March 1.

Taare Zameen Par

Taare Zameen Par (Stars on Earth) is about a small boy suffering from the learning disability dyslexia.Taare Zameen Par becomes the story of any and every child who is being robbed off his childhood by insensitive parents and teachers who believe their job is to create race-winning rats for the rat race rather than Einsteins, Edisons, Agatha Christies and Leonardo Da Vincis.Taare Zameen Par takes us into the heart of Ishaan's world: his struggles with the three r's, his ambitious father who thinks Ishaan needs discipline, his caring-but-harried mother, his loving big brother who watches out for him. And his art teacher Ram Shankar Nikumbh, who saves Ishaan from sinking into a dark box.It's also the first time we've seen the dark, traumatic side of childhood. Bullying, and constant haranguing by teachers and parents in hindi movie.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008 is unlike other websites.Its creater Mr. David Terr, PhD Mathematics from the University of California, Berkeley, stated that he created the website to inform and educate the public about the glorious world of mathematics. He hopes to further the knowledge of math and its applications. The site has many great features, including numerous articles such as 'Uses for Math', 'Teaching Math', 'Advanced Math', 'Math and Art', 'Math and Sports', and 'Web Design and Math

Saturday, February 23, 2008


The Combined Pre-Medical Test (CPMT), organised by Lucknow University (LU), will be held on May 14.Over one lakh candidates are expected to appear in the test, which is the gateway for admissions to state medical colleges.The decision was taken by the university authorities in consultation with the state government.CPMT, which was originally scheduled for May 10, was postponed as it was clashing with the All India Pre-Veterinary Test.

Friday, February 22, 2008

IISc. Entrance on April 27

The Indian Institute of Sciences (IISc.) Bangalore - 560012, has invited applications for an entrance test to be held on April 27 for admission to its Integrated Ph.D. programme in biological, chemical, physical and mathematical sciences.Eligibility: First class B.Sc. degree under 10+2+3 pattern in relevant disciplines. For biological sciences, a degree is required in physical, chemical or biological sciences, including pharmaceutical, veterinary and agricultural sciences. For chemical sciences, the degree should be with chemistry as one of the main subjects and with mathematics at the Plus-Two level. For physical sciences, the degree should be with physics as the main subject. For mathematical sciences, B.Sc. mathematics, B.E. or B.Tech. are required. Applicants should qualify in the entrance test and the following interview.The institute has also invited applications for admission to M.E. in aerospace, chemical, civil, electrical, mechanical, telecommunication and materials engineering; computer science and engineering; micro electronics; signal processing; and system sciences; M.Tech. in electronics design and technology; computer science; climate science; and instrumentation; Ph.D.; and M.Sc. engineering. Online application facilities are also provided. The last date for receipt of completed application forms is March 24. from- hindu

Microsoft India opens Tech Lab at IIT Madras

Microsoft India has opened a laboratory at Indian Institute of Technology-Madras (IIT-M) that will give students access to the company’s latest Windows technologies. It has invested Rs.90 lakh in the facility, which will be used by graduate, postgraduate and research scholars of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering departments.The initial focus in the lab will be on Windows Terminal services, device drivers, networking protocols, windows mobile and multi-modal localisation.The laboratory will offer MS technology for the faculty and students to work with. In addition to helping students with their B Tech and M Tech projects, as well as MS and PhD research, the laboratory will have experts from Microsoft visit the institution regularly to conduct seminars and workshops.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

math disability

some young children have difficulty learning number names, counting, and recognizing how many items are in a group. Some of these children continue to demonstrate problems learning math as they proceed through school.child with a math disability has difficulty making sufficient school progress in mathematics similar to that of her peer group despite the implementation of effective teaching practices over time.approximately 6% of school-age children have significant math deficits and among students classified as learning disabled, arithmetic difficulties are as pervasive as reading problems. This does not mean that all reading disabilities are accompanied by arithmetic learning problems, but it does mean that math deficits are widespread and in need of equivalent attention and concern.Interestingly, some of the students with these difficulties may be remedial math students during the elementary years when computational accuracy is heavily stressed, but can go on to join honors classes in higher math where their conceptual prowess is called for.An extremely handicapping, though less common math disability, derives from significant visual-spatial-motor disorganization. The formation of foundation math concepts is impaired in this small subgroup of students. Methods to compensate include avoiding the use of pictures or graphics for conveying concepts, constructing verbal versions of math ideas, and using concrete materials as anchors.


Children with dyscalculia have trouble reading numbers and picturing them in their mind.Dyscalculia can be quantitative, which is a difficulty in counting and calculating; or qualitative, which is a difficulty in the conceptualizing of mathematics processes and spatial sense; or mixed, which is the inability to integrate quantity and space.Dyscalculia is a collection of symptoms of learning disability involving the most basic aspect of arithmetical skills. On the surface, these relate to basic concepts such as: telling the time, calculating prices and handling change, and measuring and estimating things such as temperature and speed.For example, they might mistake a three for an eight because the numbers look similar. They also have trouble counting objects and organizing them by size.Memory is another issue. Children with dyscalculia may not remember the correct order of operations to follow in solving math problems.Difficulties like these can lead to a lifelong fear of mathematics.Experts say students with dyscalculia need extra time to complete their work

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

cbse examination 2008

Class X and Class XII examinations of the CBSE will see a change in the pattern of questions, with the focus being more on understanding and analysis rather than memorising ability of students.For the first time, 20 percent of the questions will be based on `high-order thinking skills’ as prescribed by the National Curriculum Framework (NCF), the guiding document for preparation of NCERT textbooks.Over 13.13 lakh students are appearing in the exams starting from 1st March.While there are 7,65,095 candidates, including 4,49,742 boys, for the Class X exam, 5,48,815 students, including 3,18,618 boys, have registered for the Class XII exam.The total number of candidates marks an eight percent increase over the number of students last year.Over 12 lakh students had appeared in the test last year in the board exams.About 2,500 physically-challenged students will appear in the exams.These include 373 visually-challenged students in Class X and 214 such candidates in Class XII.There will be 2,624 centres for Class X and 2,394 centres for Class XII students.About 18,000 students have registered for the exams from foreign countries.
In Delhi region of the board, 2,19,796 students have registered for the Class X exam while there are 1,60,414 students for the Class XII exam.The CBSE has already put the sample question papers on its website.It will also put the sample answer papers of those students who had secured 100 percent marks in the papers last year.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Parivartan -2008

The Department of Management Studies, IIT Delhi is organizing its annual business festival Parivartan on February 15-17 at IIT Delhi.Parivartan is the celebration of the Indian Economy encapsulating business growth through a colorful spectrum of events.The curtain raiser for Parivartan, scheduled on February 15, will be graced by none other than the country’s first woman IPS officer Kiran Bedi and Ambassador J. C. Sharma.Parivartan sees participation from Business Schools all over the country and corporate as well. This year, over 100 teams are arriving on campus to take part in the fest.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


IIT-M offers a five year integrated master's programme in Humanities for students completing their plus-two. This integrated masters' course may be taken with specialisations in the disciplines of Economics, Development Studies or English.Class 12 students of commerce and humanities streams are eligible to apply for this five-year integrated masters programme. Selection would be made through the Humanities and Social Sciences Entrance Exam (HSEE) to be held on May 18 in Chennai, Hyderabad, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai and New Delhi. The total number of seats available is 30. Students completing the course are eligible to pursue doctorates at international institutes like the London School of Economics.The examination syllabus is structured on English and comprehension skills, analytical and quantitative ability, Indian and world history, Indian economy, environment and ecology. The question pattern would be objective and exam duration is three hours. The question paper will pose 180 questions, and negative questions will be awarded to wrong answers.Application forms can be obtained by post. The cost of the application form and examination fee is Rs. 600. For women, physically challenged persons, and students from scheduled caste or tribe, the application form costs Rs.300.Interested students, who have completed their plus two exams or would be completing it in March, may apply for this integrated course by sending a demand draft favouring the Chairman, HSEE, IIT, Madras, payable at Chennai, along with two self-addressed slips. The last date for receiving postal requests for application forms is February 25. The completed application forms should be sent to the Chairman, HSEE 2008, JEE Office, IIT Madras, Chennai- 600 036. Tel.: 044-22578220. The last date for receipt of completed application forms is March 3.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Vocational courses

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) would start vocational courses in information technology, fashion design, manufacturing technology, general healthcare and retail management at Plus-2 level with industry support.CBSE with the support of the National Stock Exchange, has already introduced a course on financial market management in 90 CBSE schools.In all these competency-based vocational courses, CBSE would formulate the curriculum in association with industry, and certification for students would be given jointly by the CBSE and a mentor organisation.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

G.D. Birla award 2007

The prestigious G.D. Birla award 2007 has been conferred on Prof. Santanu Bhattacharya of the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore for his significant contribution in the field of chemical biology and molecular design.The G.D. Birla award which carries a cash prize of Rs.1.5 lakh was instituted by the K. K. Birla Foundation in 1991. It is given to young scientists below 50 years of age. The foundation's mission is to promote scientific research in the country by giving recognition to high caliber Indian scientists.Prof Bhattacharya's investigations into DNA-lipid interactions using a number of chemical and biophysical methods and studies have key implications in developing carriers for gene therapy.Prof Bhattacharya was born on April 23, 1958. After obtaining his Ph D in Bio organic Chemistry from the University of Rutgers, USA in 1988, he joined as a CSIR Fellow at the University of Calcutta. From 1991 he has been working in the Department of Organic Chemistry, IIS, Bangalore and is currently ranked as Professor. He is an honorary faculty member, Chemical Biology Unit, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Stuides Research,, Bangalore and has held visiting positions in various universities abroad. Selection for the award is made by a Board headed by the President of the Indian National Science Academy here and includes eminent scientists such as Prof M M Sharma, former Director, Institute of Chemical Technology, University of Bombay, Mumbai, Prof M K Bhan, Secretary, Department of Biotechnology, Prof Asis Datta, Director, National Centre for Plant Genome Research Centre, New Delhi, Prof T V Ramakrishnan, Department of Physics, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi and Dr Anupam Varma, National Professor, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi.Previous recipients of the prize were Prof Asis Datta (Molecular Biology and Biotechnology), Prof Goverdhan Mehta (Organic Chemistry), Bangalore, Dr R A Mashelkar (Polymer Science and Engineering), New Delhi, Prof Padmanabhan Balaram (Molecular Biophysics) Bangalore, , Prof Girish S Agarwal (Quantum Optics, non-Linear Optics), Allahabad, Prof Biman Bagchi (Pysical Chemistry and Condensed Biophysics), Bangalore among others. Three of the awardees -- Dr R A Mashelkar, Prof Ashoke Sen and Dr Goverdhan Mehta -- were elected Fellows of the Royal Society, London reflecting the quality of the selection made for the award.

Dr Sangeeta Bhatia

Dr Sangeeta Bhatia - associate professor in the Harvard-MIT Division of Health Sciences and Technology (HST) and MIT's Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science pioneered one of the first successful methods for sustaining functional liver cells outside the body.devised a novel way to create tiny colonies of living human liver cells that model the full-sized organ. The work could allow better screening of new drugs that are potentially harmful to the liver and reduce the costs associated with their development.Liver toxicity is one of the main reasons pharmaceutical companies. November 15 online issue of Advanced Materials and the November 18 online issue of Nature Biotechnology carried important advances in engineering and medicine by this 38 year old Indian-American scientist.Liver toxicity is one of the main reasons pharmaceutical companies pull drugs off the market. These dangerous drugs slip through approval processes due in part to the shortcomings of liver toxicity tests. Existing tests rely on liver cells from rats, which do not always respond to toxins the way human cells do. Or they rely on dying human cells that survive for only a few days in the lab.The new technology arranges human liver cells into tiny colonies only 500 micrometers (millionths of a meter) in diameter that act much like a real liver and survive for up to six weeks.


Born in India in 1887, Ramanujan was a mathematical genius whose work continues to surprise mathematicians into the 21st century. His work is filled with surprises. At the Ramanujan centenary conference at the University of Illinois, it was physicist Freeman Dyson who proclaimed, "That was the wonderful thing about Ramanujan. He discovered so much, and yet he left so much more in his garden for other people to discover.Born into poverty, Ramanujan grew up in southern India, and although he had little formal training in mathematics, he became hooked on mathematics. He spent the years between 1903 and 1913 cramming notebooks with page after page of mathematical formulas and relationships that he had uncovered.Ramanujan's life as a professional mathematician began in 1914 when he accepted an invitation from the prominent British mathematician G.H. Hardy to come to Cambridge University. He spent 5 years in England, publishing many papers and achieving international recognition for his mathematical research.Though his work was cut short by a mysterious illness that brought him back to India for the final year of his life, Ramanujan's work has remained a subject of considerable interest.In 1957, with monetary assistance from Sir Dadabai Naoroji Trust, at the instance of Professors Homi J Bhabha and K. Chandrasekaran, the Tata institute of Fundamental Research published a facsimile edition of the Notebooks of Ramanujan in two volumes, with just an introductory para about them.The formidable task of truly editing the Notebooks was taken up in right earnest by Berndt in May 1977 and his dedicated efforts for nearly two decades has resulted in the Ramanujan's Notebooks published by Springer-Verlag in five Parts, the first of which appeared in 1985.Between 1903 and 1914, before Ramanujan went to Cambridge, he compiled 3,542 theorems in the notebooks. Most of the time Ramanujan provided only the results and not the proof.The 600 formulae that Ramanujan jotted down on loose sheets of paper during the one year he was in India, after he returned from Cambridge, are the contents of the `Lost' Note Book found by Andrews in 1976. He was ailing throughout that one year after his return from England (March 1919 - April 26, 1920.The three original Ramanujan Notebooks are with the Library of the University of Madras, some of the correspondence, papers/letters on or about Ramanujan are with the National Archives at New Delhi and the Tamil Nadu Archives, and a large number of his letters and connected papers/correspondence and notes are with the Wren Library of Trinity College, Cambridge. The Ramanujan Institute for Advanced Study in Mathematics of the University of Madras is situated at a short distance from the famed Marina Beach and is close to the Administrative Buildings of the University and its Library. Mrs. Janakiammal Ramanujan, the widow of Ramanujan, lived close to the University's Marina Campus and died on April 13, 1994.Shanmugha Arts, Science, Technology and Research Academy (SASTRA), a private university whose main campus is located in the town of Tanjore, purchased the home of Ramanujan in 2003, and has since maintained it as a museum. Research chairs established at the SASTRA centre at Kumbakonam — two by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India and one by City Union Bank Ltd. — encourage research in the field of mathematics in honor of Ramanujan.

Friday, February 08, 2008

Indian Institute of Engineering Sciences and Technology (IIEST)

Indian Institute of Engineering Sciences and Technology (IIEST) are institutes proposed by the Government of India to meet the growing demand for IITs by every state in India. Initially, a group of seven elite universities had been selected for upgradation to the status of IIESTs by the S.K.Joshi committee.The Ministry had short-listed these institutions based on the recommendations made by the S.K. Joshi Committee that suggested the upgradation of select institutions in the country to the level of IITs.As a continuation of the recommendations of the Joshi Committee, a committee headed by M. Anandakrishnan (Chairman of the Madras Institute of Development Studies) was appointed for an in-depth evaluation of seven of the identified institutions for upgradation to the level of IITs.The thrust of IIEST will be for engineering education. The Departments under the Faculty of Science, Social Science, Humanities and Law will be at peril.According to an expert committee appointed by the MHRD, the President will be the visitor of all IIESTs. The five institutions should function as a consortium with an IIEST council, an advisory body for major common policy decisions. The Minister for Human Resource Development will be ex-officio chairman of the council. Each IIEST shall have a Board of Governors chaired by an eminent academic.The Board of Governors shall be the highest decision-making authority of the institute. The President will appoint its chairman. Each institute will have an executive council and an academic council. The institutes will have an individual statute providing for other institutional authorities, their responsibilities and power.All IIESTs will preserve its all-India character in student population through national level admission tests either by adopting the Joint Entrance Examination system or the All-India Engineering Entrance Examination. The expert committee has given a budgetary recommendation for Rs.2,407.86 crore for the five institutions identified for upgrade during 2007-2012.The proposed IIESTs would be created by an act of the Parliament of India. They would be given the status of Institutes of National Importance, on the lines of IITs and NITs by the Indian government. Later, the Government of India selected five institutions for the upgradation.The upgradation would be brought forth initially by introducing two separate schedules in the NIT Act and the act would be renamed NIT-IIEST Act. By virtue of this act the power of authority passes to the Central Government. The institute will be able to have 50% seats reserved for it's domicile candidates. Rest will be based on all India rankings.Gradually as more institutes get the approval, the central government would enact a separate act for the IIESTs. IIESTs would be special in the sense that these would be catering towards post-graduate and research studies exclusively like the IISc differing only in the sense that most of their courses will be integrated in nature. Students selected through UG Competetive exams would be enrolled for dual-degree courses in engineering and sciences. The admission would be through the AIEEE. The state would have a representative in the Governing body. BESU would be the first IIEST to start functioning from the academic year 2008-09. The five institutions have been short-listed based on the final Anandakrishnan report are as follows:

IIEST Cochin Cochin University of Science and Technology
IIEST Kolkata Bengal Engineering and Science University, Shibpur
IIEST Hyderabad Osmania University College of Technology
IIEST Visakhapatanam Andhra University College of Engineering

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters

The French government will confer "Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters" title on Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan for his contribution to Indian film industry.This distinction is given to persons who have established themselves by their creativity in the field of art, culture and literature or for their contribution to the influence of the arts in France and throughout the world.

Officer of the Legion of Honour

Infosys mentor was conferred with the Officer of the Legion of Honour, the highest civilian distinction of the Government of France.French Minister of Higher Education and Research Valerie Pecresse bestowed the honour to the "most admired business leader" of India .Created in 1802 by Napoleon Bonaparte, the Legion of Honour is the highest civilian distinction that can be conferred in France regardless of the social status or the nationality of the recipients.Pecresse acknowledged the humble beginnings of Infosys, which was co-founded by Narayana Murthy in 1981 along with six friends and 215 dollars in the pocket.


The directors of the seven Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) will meet later this month to discuss details of a proposal to take the Common Admission Test (CAT) online by 2009.The CAT exams may also be formatted on the lines of the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) so that the scores are valid for two to three years. An IIM Calcutta professor who is working on the proposal said the primary reason for taking the CAT online is the increasing number of aspirants.

More teachers for math and science

The Human Resource Development ministry asks state governments to appoint more teachers for mathematics and sciences to improve quality of school education in India.The National Council for Educational Research and Training (NCERT) recently found that over 50 per cent of Class V level government school students fail to solve simple mathematics questions like multiple addition and subtraction.The ministry will also seek feedback on the Central government proposal to open 6,000 new model secondary schools in the country.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Ada Lovelace

Ada Lovelace, daughter of the poet Byron and his first wife, Isabella Milbanke, was highly mathematically gifted. Milbanke, known as Princess of the Parallelograms for her exceptional mathematical and logistical abilities, tutored Ada rigorously in science and mathematics, and Ada went on to collaborate with Charles Babbage, the inventor of the calculating machine. Her theories of indexing and looping form the basis of modern computing and Ada is now widely acknowledged as one of the world's first computer programmers.Ada called herself "an Analyst (& Metaphysician)," and the combination was put to use in the Notes. She understood the plans for the device as well as Babbage but was better at articulating its promise. She rightly saw it as what we would call a general-purpose computer. It was suited for "developping [sic] and tabulating any function whatever. . . the engine [is] the material expression of any indefinite function of any degree of generality and complexity." Her Notes anticipate future developments, including computer-generated music.

Education bigger than tourism

EDUCATION has replaced tourism as Australia's top services export.The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimates that education exports last year were worth $12.5 billion compared with the $11.5 billion tourism industry.Its data ranked education as the third most lucrative export industry behind coal ($20.8 billion) and iron ore ($16 billion).The ABS figures were calculated by assessing the dollars spent in Australia by foreign students, which last year numbered more than 450,000, 18% more than in 2006. Almost half of the students were staying in universities, while the fastest areas of growth were in the vocational training and English language sector. The top five countries for students were China, India, South Korea, Malaysia and Hong Kong.

Dr. Andrew H. Wallace

Dr. Andrew H. Wallace, professor emeritus of mathematics at Penn and former chair of the mathematics department (1968-71), passed away January 18 in Chania, Crete, Greece. He was 81.Born and raised in Edinburgh, Scotland, he graduated in 1946 with an MA in mathematics and physics from Edinburgh University. He earned his PhD in mathematics from St. Andrews University in 1949.After immigrating to the US in 1959, he served as professor and chair of the mathematics department at Indiana University. He then came to Penn in 1965 and stayed until his retirement in 1986. his mathematical work was mainly concentrated in topology where he produced fundamental results reported on principally in his series of papers entitled “Modifications and Cobounding Manifolds.” Here, he essentially settled in dimensions 5 and higher, the basic open problem regarding these geometric objects, though he did not push his results to an explicit statement of the solution.Dr. Wallace’s work in the topology of three dimensional spaces was groundbreaking and remains frequently cited and used to the present day.

Padma Awards

The President of India has approved the names of the 135 persons for conferment of the Padma Awards-2008. The list has 13 Padma Vibhushan awardees, 35 Padma Bhushan and 71 Padma Shri winners.The Padma Vibhushan winners are Asha Bhosle (Art), Justice (Dr.) A.S Anand, PN Dhar, foreign minister Pranab Mukherjee (all three for public affairs), Dr E Sreedharan, and Dr Rajendra Kumar Pachauri for science and engineering, Late Mr Edmund Hillary (Posthumous), Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, Viswanathan Anand (all three for sports), Lakshmi Narayan Mittal, N R Narayana Murthy, PRS Oberoi, Ratan Naval Tata (all four for trade and industry).The list of Padma Bhushan awardees has five from the field of art. These are Amarnath Sehgal (Posthumous), Ustad Asad Ali Khan, P Susheela, Ustad Rahim Fahimuddin Dagar and Prof. Sushil Kumar Saxena. For civil service the awardees are Chandrshekhar Dasgupta, K Padmanabhiah and V Ramachandran.There are nine winners in the field of Literature and Education. These are Prof Brijinder Nath Goswamy, Prof Ji Xianlin (China), Prof Kaushik Basu (USA), Prof. (Smt.) Padma Desai (USA), Ravindra Kelekar, Dr (Smt.) Shayama Chona, Shri Lal Shukla, Dr Srinivasa SR Varadhan, Prof TK Oommen and Prof (Dr) Jagjit Singh Chopra. Prof Nirmal Kumar Ganguly has got it for medicine while Mian Bashir Ahmed, Lord Meghnad Desai, Late Yuli Mikhailovitch Vorontsov (Posthumous) have got Padma Bhushan for public affairs. Prof Asis Datta, Prof. Sukh Dev have got it for science and engineering.Indian born astronaut Sunita Williams has got it for astronautics.Vasant Gowarikar, DR Mehta, Dominique Lapierre (France), Dr (Ms.) Inderjit Kaur have got it for social work. Suresh Kumar Neotia, Baba Neelkanth Kalyani, K. V. Kamath, Shiv Nadar and Vikram Pandit have got it for Trade and Industry.The Padma Shri award list has 71 names. The list consists of Gangadhar Pradhan, Mikhailovich Pechinkov (Russia), Pandit Gokulotsavji Maharaj, Hans Raj Hans, Dr.(Smt.) Helen Giri, Jatin Goswami, Jawahar Wattal, John Martin Nelson, Jonnalagadda Gurappa Chetty, Kekoo M. Gandhy, Madhuri Dixit, Mangala Prasad Mohanty, Manoj Night Shyamalan, Meenakshi Chitharanjan, Moozhikkulam Kochukuttan Chakyar, P.K. Narayanan Nambiar, Pratap Pawar (UK), Sabitri Heisnam, Sentila T. Yanger, Dr. Sirkazhi G. Sivachidambaram, Tom Alter and Prof. Yella Venkateswara Rao have got it for Art.Barkha Dutt, Rajdeep Dilip Sardesai and Vinod Dua have got it for Journalism.
Prof. Amitabh Mattoo, Balasubramanian Sivanthi Adithan, Bholabhai Patel, Dr. (Smt.) Bina Agarwal, Prof. (Dr.) K.S. Nisar Ahmed, Dr. (Smt.) M. Leelavathy, Dr. Nirupam Bajpai, Dr. Srinivas Udgata, Prof. Sukhadeo Thorat, Shri Surjya Kanta Hazarika, Dr. Vellayani Arjunan and Mohammad Yousuf Taing have won it for Literature and Education.Haji Kaleem Ullah Khan has got Padma Shri for Mango Plantation and Grafting.Dr. A. Jayanta Kumar Singh, Prof. (Dr.) Arjunan Rajasekaran, Prof. (Dr.) C.U. Velmurugendran, Dr. Deepak Sehgal, Prof. (Dr.) Dinesh K. Bhargava, Dr. Indu Bhushan Sinha, Dr. Keiki R. Mehta, Dr. (Smt.) Malvika Sabharwal, Dr. Mohan Chandra Pant, Dr. Rakesh Kumar Jain, Dr. Raman Kapur, Dr. Randhir Sud, Dr. Shyam Narayan Arya, Prof. (Dr.) Surendra Singh Yadav, Dr. Tatyarao Pundlikrao Lahane and Dr. Tony Fernandez have got it for medicine.Colette Mathur has got it for public affairs. She is from Switzerland.Bhavarlal Hiralal Jain, Dr. Joseph H. Hulse (Canada), Prof Kasturi Lal Chopra, Dr. Sant Singh Virmani (USA) have got it for science and engineering. Kailash Chandra Agrawal, Sister Karuna Mary Braganza, Dr. (Smt.) Kshama Metre, Dr. Kutikuppala Surya Rao, Madan Mohan Sabharwal, Dr. (Ms.) Sheela Barthakur, V.R. Gowrishankar, Vikramjit Singh Sahney and Yousaf Ali Musaliamveettil Abdul Kader of UAE have been awarded the Padma Shri for social work.Baichung Bhutia and Bula Chowdhury Chakraborty have got it for sports.Dr. Amit Mitra has got it for trade and industry.The government has once again skipped conferring the Bharat Ratna for the seventh time in a row. The last time it was given was in 2001 when it was conferred filmdom's golden voice Lata Mangeshkar and Shehnai maestro Ustad Bismillah Khan. Apart from Sreedharan, honours list includes educationist Shyama Chona, Prof Asis Datta, journalists Rajdeep Sardesai, Barkha Dutt and Vinod Dua have been honoured. Veteran commentator Jasdev Singh, retired IAS officer and government's interlocutor in the Naga peace process K Padmanabhaiah, US astronaut of Indian origin Sunita Williams and French co-author of "City of Joy" and social activist Dominique Lapierre are among those awarded Padma Bhushan for their contributions. Noted sociologist T K Oomen has been awarded a Padma Shri. Apart from Madhuri Dixit, veteran actor and theatre personality Tom Alter has been given a Padma Shri. In 2007, 121 Padma awards were announced — of these, 10 Padma Vibhushans, 32 Padma Bhushans and 79 Padma Shris.

TCS asked 500 staffs to leave for poor performance

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has asked around 500 people to leave the company after the second annual appraisal it carries out, citing performance-related issues. By the end of the financial year, this number could go up to 600. The employees who were asked to leave are mostly those with 2-3 years of experience and do not include trainees because they have less than a year’s experience.Last week, TCS was in the news for cutting down the variable pay of employees for slippages in internal growth targets — a move that will save it about Rs 83 crore.An official statement from the company termed it a routine exercise carried out bi-annually to weed out non-performers.source--Economic times

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Six-year D. Pharm course in the offing

Kakatiya University will introduce Doctor of Pharmacy, a six-year course, from the next academic year. The new course will comprise more clinical aspects to make the candidates on par with doctors.This will enable the pharmacy profession more supportive to doctors and it will result in improvement of the over-all healthcare system.The existing pharmacy colleges offering B.Pharm courses and having necessary infrastructure and tieup with a hospital are eligible to have the new course.

Frank Nelson Cole Prize

Professor Manjul Bhargava received the Frank Nelson Cole Prize in Number Theory for his work on composition laws and his contributions to the work of renowned mathematician Carl Friedrich Gauss. He has previously been awarded the Clay Mathematics Institute’s Research Award and the SASTRA Ramanujan Prize. In 2002, Bhargava was named one of Popular Science’s “Brilliant 10.Manjul Bhargava, the youngest full professor at Princeton, has made phenomenal contributions to number theory, notably by his discovery of higher order composition laws. These appeared in a Ph.D thesis, written under the direction of Professor Andrew Wiles of Princeton University and published in the `Annals of Mathematics.Bhargava created a whole new area of research in a classical topic that had seen very little activity since the time of Gauss.

TCS variable pay cut

On January 30, India’s largest software company Tata Consultancy Company (TCS) has announced to cut the variable component of its employee and on an average, the cut will affect the employee’s salary by anywhere between 1.5 – two per cent less this month and onwards. Though 1.5 – two per cent cut does not look very huge in the industry, which is suffering, but getting less salary is certainly pinching the employee. But it appears that the company may not have any other choice keeping in view that they have maintained the same level of salary despite appreciation of rupee since last one year.THE STRENGTHENING of rupee, imminent recession in US, sub prime mortgagee crisis in US and its worldwide coupling effect - it seems that everything is going against Indian software industry. On one side, due to slowdown in US economy and effect of sub prime crisis in US as well as in Europe, search of new clients and increasing the contracted rates are becoming tough for software companies.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Scholarships for minority community children

Two-and-a-half million schoolchildren from India's minority communities will get scholarships for the next five years, with a cabinet panel earmarking more than Rs.18 billion for this. The decision of the cabinet committee on economic affairs (CCEA) would benefit students of Class I to X studying in government or aided private schools. Thirty percent of the scholarships have been earmarked for girl students.The government has also identified 90 districts across the country with a concentration of the minorities and has initiated moves to upgrade the basic infrastructure in these areas.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

Eight Indian Americans reach Intel science talent finals

Eight Indian American high school students, five of them girls, have been named among 40 finalists for the Intel Science Talent Search 2008 contest.Avanthi Raghavan, Shravani Mikkilineni, Hamsa Sridhar, Shivani Sud, Isha Jain, Vinay Venkatesh Ramasesh, Ashok Chandran and Ayon Sen get at least $5,000 in scholarships and a laptop. They will next compete for 10 scholarships - including the top award of $100,000 - in March in Washington, DC.The eight talented students were selected Wednesday from over 1,600 individual entrants for the nationwide competition, often called the "junior Nobel prize", administered annually by the Washington based Society for Science & the Public.The project Ashok Chandran, 17, of Nesconset, New York, submitted for the competition, studied the link between smoking and breast cancer. He tested the hypothesis that nicotine would alter mammary cell gene expression, creating a cellular environment akin to that of a breast cancer cell.Isha Himani Jain, 17, of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, has identified a cellular mechanism underlying bone growth spurts in zebra fish, similar to the way children's bones grow. She had also won, in October, a $100,000 scholarship topping the Siemens Competition in Math, Science and Technology for the same study, which has been published in a journal.Avanthi Raghavan, 17, of Orlando, Florida, submitted a project studying the mechanisms of protein transport critical to the survival and virulence of the malaria parasite, which accounts for over two million deaths every year.The project of Shivani Sud, 17, of Durham, North Carolina, focuses on identifying stage II colon cancer patients at high risk of recurrence and the best therapeutic agents for treating their tumours.Hamsa Sridhar, 18, of Kings Park, New York, developed a low cost optical tweezers system that uses laser light to trap and suspend microscopic particles.Ayon Sen, 17, of Austin, Texas, investigated the natural processes by which the ocean transports heat. He developed a MATLAB software interface for deep-water ocean current velocity data and integrated it with surface water velocity data from satellite altimeters.Vinay Venkatesh Ramasesh, 18, of Fort Worth, Texas, submitted a chemistry project involving algorithms to accurately determine molecular thermodynamic properties of large molecules, such as proteins.
Shravani Mikkilineni, 17, of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, studied the computation of continued fraction expansions of the square roots of positive integers.

CBSE to provide counselling

The CBSE will be providing counselling services through multiple modes of communication including telephone, newspapers and internet.For students facing exam blues this season, relief is just a click or phone-call away.The CBSE will be providing counselling services through multiple modes of communication including telephone, newspapers and internet.The CBSE has been providing counselling services to students for the past ten years and introduced multiple modes of communication this year to maximise its reach.The programme which is aimed at helping students and parents overcome anxiety and exam-related stress, opens its first phase of counselling services from February 1 to March 31 this year.Apart from tele-counselling through Interactive Voice Response System, on-line counselling and question-answer through newspaper columns will function as additional modes of communication for students.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

Online Test Portal “”

Bangalore based premier training organisation BASE and ExcelSoft, an e-learning solutions company announced the launch of, a portal offering online test series for students aspiring to get into professional institutes like IITs, NITs and engineering colleges. The portal presents tests and assessments that help students prepare better for these exams. SuccessRunway will offer students a VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) featuring the Online Test Series to prepare for the IIT-JEE, AIEEE and the Karnataka CET and COMEDK examinations. The tests can be taken at a cyber café, at home or any place with a broadband Internet connection.Students can take 5 tests on the pattern of the competitive examination so that they become familiar with a wide variety of questions. Feedback is available immediately on answering the test. “The unique feature of the portal’s online Test Series is that it provides pedagogically strong near-classroom learning experience.Established in 1991, BASE is a premier educational services company with training centres in Bangalore and Mysore. Started by a prominent team of academics, BASE’s mission is to mould meritorious students into true winners. Apart from providing training services, BASE also offers academic support to a large number of institutions across Karnataka.

David Mumford

Brown University mathematician David Mumford has won the 2008 Wolf Foundation Prize in Mathematics for groundbreaking theoretical work in algebraic geometry. The Wolf Prize is one of the most prestigious honors in mathematics.