Sitemap

A list of all the posts and pages found on the site. For you robots out there is an XML version available for digesting as well.

Pages

Posts

The Baker’s Apprentice

3 minute read

Published:

You might already know that I adore baked goods. My love for them is poetic. There is nothing prettier than a piece of light, fluffy vanilla cake with bits of raspberry in it. My host in Bellevue (Peter, you’re awesome and I miss you) last summer once baked these delicious raspberry and date muffins. I have vivid memories of devouring those while struggling with the intricacies of networks’ peering policies. Such fond memories.

Things we do for good coffee

1 minute read

Published:

Our lab has a nice Breville espresso machine which comes with a burr grinder built in. We like it. Since its arrival in the lab space, I make way fewer pour-over style cups of joe. I still love my aeropress and Hario v60 but am definitely partial to a good shot of espresso. How much do we love having the coffee machine? So much so that some days I drag myself out of bed to come and have nice coffee in the lab. We are amateur baristas, caffeine addicts and connoiseurs, all at the same time. Here is a sample of some fine latte art from the budding baristas in the Calipr research lab:

Bottle of Olympia Royale

less than 1 minute read

Published:

That bottle of Olympia Royale tea, the one I thought I was going to enjoy after coming home. The bottle that had hopes associated with it. The one I couldn’t hold, the one I couldn’t open, the one I couldn’t savor. I tried to buy it again only to find it is now sold out online too. Unavailable, indefinitely.

Diwali!

less than 1 minute read

Published:

I hardly ever thought about festivals. I have been away from my family home since I was 17. Initially in India, far from family traditions and now in the US, especially so. This is the first time I am thinking of Diwali and its celebration. This is the first time I am missing the lights and the rangolis. Maybe, I will find my old kurtis from 2015 and try them on again today to revisit the festival of lights. To those sharing my nostalgia, here’s hoping the Diwali diyas of bygone days remind you of the goodness in the world.

Dinner time biking

less than 1 minute read

Published:

I biked to Whole Foods to get groceries today. While there, I got tempted to get dinner to avoid cooking. This is becoming a nasty habit. Sadly I have been bad, mostly eating out and avoiding cooking for weeks now. But, this is a problem for future me. Today, I got my groceries at Whole Foods and packed a slice of pizza for dinner.

UMass, please pay me.

2 minute read

Published:

Update: On October 19, 2018, UMass finally paid me! Hurray! Eyeing those fancy calligraphy sets to celebrate the richness!

Pata Hai?

less than 1 minute read

Published:

Recently, I seem to have lost the ability to voice my opinions about life in general to a person. I don’t think I valued this enough while I had it. My musings were often preceded by the phrase “Pata hai..” (meaning “Do you know?”) and consisted of views on the banalities of life, science, research, etc. Now, I will chronicle these musings on my blog. It is like crowdsourcing the effort of listening to me, onto you, my readers!

Teeny Tiny Steps

1 minute read

Published:

I love grocery shopping. There is something therapeutic about it. Not because it is shopping, I don’t find shopping for clothes fun. But groceries have untapped potential. They are precursors to delicious meals, raw material for culinary adventures about to unfold. I look forward to going to the Trader Joe’s in Hadley and getting a week’s sustenance. An added advantage is that until the brutal New England winter strikes Amherst, I can bike on the Norwuttuck Rail Trail to get to Trader Joe’s. This trail will get a special mention in my thesis if and when I graduate from the PhD program. Here is why:

Yoga and questionable music choices

4 minute read

Published:

After several failed attempts, I finally went for my first yoga class in over a month. It isn’t that I was particularly lazy. I spent a month with my family in India and found it hard to keep practicing when I had very little control over my life. I finally came back in the beginning of this month but life circumstances since have made even eating one meal a day challenging. But yesterday, resolved to start a routine, I left for my favorite Yoga teacher’s class at the Amherst Yoga Center at 5.30 PM. To my dismay, my bike had a flat tire so I skipped the yoga class to walk my bike to a bike shop which is close to home. But this failed attempt at re-starting my Yoga routine only strengthened my resolve.

Short Coffee Tour In Brooklyn

3 minute read

Published:

I was a staunch believer of “It’s Always Tea Time”. But then graduate school started and I felt the need for something stronger. That and the deliciousness of coffee. So I am largely a coffee person now. Its nice to be a coffee addict when staying in the vicinity of NYC. The city is full of cute little cafes that serve artisan coffee in a cozy setting. So this weekend we did a short coffee tour in Brooklyn. It was short because we covered only 3 cafes in the entire day. But the idea was to spend time reading in each of the cafes and enjoy the ambiance along with the coffee. This post is a story with pictures that hopefully captures the spirit of my coffee tour.

Between Semesters

4 minute read

Published:

I am in the place after the end of a semester and close to the beginning of the next. The semester break begins with the uncontrollable joy of having survived and the glowing hope of planned productivity. Or so it started for me.

Student Again! Settling in at SUNY, Stony Brook

3 minute read

Published:

Until recently, I was a software developer working on routing protocols at Arista Networks. I had a lot of fun working for Arista. The work was challenging, I was learning new things and the stock options were insane! With the comfort of it all, I had a nice place stocked with plenty of books and cute little cafes in my neighborhood. Here’s a picture of my living room from that time:

It’s Always Tea Time

2 minute read

Published:

On an average working day, I have at least 3 cups of tea without sugar with very little or no milk. Weekends are more relaxed, I make a pot full and keep sipping tea to fill the interstices of my day. Recently, I read this article about ways of brewing tea. More than the style of making the perfect cuppa, I was amazed to know both George Orwell and Douglas Adams were passionate tea drinkers. In his essay, A Nice Cup of Tea, Orwell says,

Source Code Browsing In Emacs

1 minute read

Published:

Its extremely important to be able to navigate a large code base effectively. I have been taking good tools for source code navigation for granted at my workplace. But most of my personal, side projects were small enough for me to get by without such tools. Either that or I was being lazy.

The New Interface

less than 1 minute read

Published:

In order to generate BIND files for PDNS configuration the weight, priority and port corresponding to each server entry is also required. So, I added those fields in the web application and the corresponding fields in the SQLite database. Here is a screenshot of the new interface:

Generating PDNS Config File: Optimization

less than 1 minute read

Published:

Taking up the issue stated in the last post, in this post I will elaborate on the optimization that reduced the time taken for generating the mapfile from 5 hours to one second approximately.

Generating PDNS Config File: Part 2

less than 1 minute read

Published:

In this post I will describe recent changes to the Flask webapp. On clicking the Plot Voronoi button, it also generates the map file pdns.config that maps networks to mirror servers’ pseudo IPs.

Removing a Mirror Server from the Database

less than 1 minute read

Published:

From where I left last week, I added checkboxes for every entry (mirror server) and made all of them submit to the /delete URL when the Delete Selected button is clicked. Then, in the delete method, I checked the entries for which the checkbox was checked and deleted them from the database.

Adding a Mirror Server to Database

less than 1 minute read

Published:

This tiny post shows how to add a server titled Test with a URL google.com. Here is the confirmation screen with the entry added!

Flask Web Application

1 minute read

Published:

In this post, I will describe the Web application I have setup. This application basically uses a Sqlite3 database to store the information of all the CVMFS servers. It shows the list of servers currently in database. If the user is logged in, he/she can add to the list of servers. They only need to add the name of the server and the URL. Then the application performs a GeoIP look-up and adds the server’s latitude and longitude to the database.

Generating PDNS Config Files: Part1

3 minute read

Published:

While setting up PowerDNS with geobackend, there are a few configuration files that need to be supplied. In this post, I will talk about how I am trying to generate the geo-ip-map-zonefile.

Annotated Map Plots

1 minute read

Published:

It was getting hard to debug the code which was calculating the networks allocated to each Voronoi cell. So I added annotations to the map to make it easy to decipher which server is named what.

Buckets of Networks

2 minute read

Published:

This is in continuation with the previous post: Data Visualization: Part 3. In the Python application that generates Voronoi polygons for the server locations, I needed to find how many networks in the world lie in which Voronoi cell. So here’s what I did:

Data Visualization: Part 3

1 minute read

Published:

Visualization for Offline Purposes

While the JavaScript visualization described in Data Visualization: Part 2 works within the browser, there is a need for building an application that allows manipulation of the mirror server data along with visualizing it. So, in this post, I will describe the construction of Voronoi diagrams in Python.

Visualizing Data: Part 2

1 minute read

Published:

This post is in continuation to the [Visualizing Data: Part 1] (http://racheesingh.github.com/2012/06/09/visualizing-data-part-1/) post. That post was about plotting the locations of servers on a world map (using JavaScript and the third part library d3.js). In this post, I will use d3.js’s built-in functions to plot the Voronoi diagrams, dividing the map into regions/cells.

Visualizing Data: Part 1

1 minute read

Published:

In this post, I am trying to visualize some data on a map to get a fair idea of how things are distributed.

Domain Name System and nslookup

3 minute read

Published:

Domain Name System (DNS)

DNS is a distributed database containing names and addresses of all reachable hosts on the Internet. While attempting to connect to a domain name (for instance: www.google.com), a host first checks its hosts file (for instance: /etc/hosts) for an entry corresponding to the domain name. If this entry is not in the hosts file, the host sends a query to its primary DNS name server. If the primary name server does not have the appropriate record, it forwards the query to a server higher in the domain name hierarchy [1].

About CERN VM File System

1 minute read

Published:

What is CERN VM File System?

CERN VM File System is a client server file system developed to deliver software distributions onto virtual machines in a fast, scalable and reliable way.

GSoC 2012 with CERN SFT

less than 1 minute read

Published:

As a part of Google Summer of Code 2012 I am working on a project with CERN SFT as the mentoring organization. The project is titled “Continuous cartography of public network services”. In this project I will be working on an algorithm that maps IP addresses of CERN Virtual Machine File System clients to mirror servers in such a way that network latency is reduced. I would also be building a web application to allow administrators to dynamically add/remove mirror servers. The application should allow for visualization of mirror locations across the globe on a Google/OpenStreet map.

portfolio

publications

talks

teaching

Teaching experience 1

Undergraduate course, University 1, Department, 2014

This is a description of a teaching experience. You can use markdown like any other post.

Teaching experience 2

Workshop, University 1, Department, 2015

This is a description of a teaching experience. You can use markdown like any other post.