Monday, March 27, 2006

Fun time in EspaƱa

We had a great time in Spain. The highlights of the trip were going to Alhambra (picture below), watching Real Madrid play (videos / pictures), and eating Tapas.

But what was equally amazing was to see the coast of Greenland from the plane. I've never seen such a clear sky on a trans-atlantic flight (more pictures)

Monday, March 13, 2006

Cast Enigma Puzzle

My colleague Scott recently introduced me to the Hanayama puzzle collection. The Cast Enigma is ranked as one the hardest metal puzzles in the world. It looks so simple and yet so impossible. I ordered one from Canada as I couldn't find any store or online store in the US that carried it! I was hoping that it would keep me busy on a long flight. But I was able to solve it last night in my first uninterrupted attempt. It is very clever and I really enjoyed it. Putting it back together was a lot more difficult.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Watching Real Madrid

Football (that's soccer) was always my favorite sport growing up. In fact, it was the the only sport I played and watched until high school. The stars aligned and we're going to watch Real Madrid next week in Spain. Interestingly, they have a few of the best players in the world: Ronaldo (best Brazilian striker), Beckam (best British player and probably the most popular footbalist today), Zidane (amazing French mid-fielder from the 98 world cup team) and Raul (best player from Spain). Although their records show why having so many stars is not a good thing (for details read the good book Moneyball by the author of Liar's Poker).

Our seats will be on the 8th row from the pitch. So it should be amazing.

I can't wait for this summer's World Cup. Too bad that I can't go to Germany. But I need to shift my work hours like usual. At least the time difference should be better than the last World Cup in Asia.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Brazilian Samba in Seattle

I have a couple of friends in a Seattle based Brazilian samba group called Vamola. They had a show this week, and I was amazed by their level of improvement since last year.

Music groups, like anything, can hit a point where they are better than their popularity. Vamola has certainly hit this point. If you live here, I recommend checking them out.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Get GMail and Google Talk for your own domain

In short, if you run your own domain, you can let Google provide your users GMail and Google Talk. Your users can login with user ID's at your domain (i.e. And they can also IM GMail users, users on other domains and any other Jabber user. says it all.