Saturday, June 02, 2007


14.46, June 02. Place: Japanese class.

Just when i was starting to begin my countdown for end of class, i felt it. It began with a gentle rocking and an immediate jolt. My sensei gave out a small squeak while my classmates woke up from their mid-day siesta. The sudden jolt lasted for about a second, which gave way to more ironical indication of putting someone to sleep....
Japan met confirms it. A magnitude of 4.6 on the richter scale. Although this is the third time i have experienced it, cant help but think how small and negligible we are compared to nature.

Btw, heard from local folks that japanese homes can withstand upto 7 on the richter scale.
So no worries! All safe and sound here!

Karth lives on............

Bangalore traffic woes remedy?

After a lot of craziness-good craziness ie. i am back to the blogosphere finally!

Yesterday in TOI(Check out the epaper version there was an ad from the traffic police department about fulfilling 4 out of the 10 promises made by them.

Pretty novel ideas-the BTIS traffic management system and the easy auto ones.
As soon as i saw the ad, i went over to the website
This website gives details on the traffic status all across Bangalore and driving directions can be sms'ed to your cellphone.
Although it is a very novel concept, i don't think it is of any great use other than its novelty factor.

Say, if i have to go to electronic city, irrespective of the traffic delays, i don't have a choice but to go on hosur road.(atleast now). It is also a no-brainer that during peak hours there will be jams on 90% of the roads.

I think the need of the hour is to figure out a way to smoothen traffic rather than giving the aam aadmi the "traffic control room" status. More often than not it is the general indiscipline among drivers that causes a traffic jam. While we drive, we have a sense of urgency which we carry about. This leads to people driving on the wrong side of the lane, driving over footpaths(yeah!), skipping signals, zero pedestrian respect, haphazard parking and so on....

Here in Tokyo, most roads are narrower than in Bangalore, but there are few very simple guidelines which make driving a breeze.
Like for e.g.. Every T-junction or intersection will have pillars fixed with mirrors. this helps the driver to exactly see what is on the other corner. So no banging bumpers!

All stop lines for vehicles stopping at signals are placed much before the intersection. This helps in easy turning for the vehicles coming from the other side. Of course, no one ever skips signals. At least I haven't seen anyone.

Back in Bangalore, if you are waiting at a stop signal and there are no pedestrians crossing or no vehicles approaching, folks will happily drive on. If you want to be the rule fearing person, you have no choice but to go deaf thanks to the blaring horns.

Simple things like this do not cost a lot and easy to implement rather than having hi-fi gadgets(blackberries for policemen!?), traffic status or building a loop flyover for 10 years.

Looks like Mr. Kumaraswamy is in a hurry to show some quick wins and this is the way he can do it!