Friday, December 05, 2008

18 Reasons Why.... One must not marry a blogger.

I was highly amused when friend of mine brought up this topic over coffee. “So what are the reasons you think?”, I asked him. It was so amusing to hear the first few that quickly I had to grab a pen and notepad and jot down every single reason he told me. So here goes the list from a man’s point of view. If you think he forgot to add something, feel free to add it in the comments section.

1. You’ll know she is pregnant through her blog.
2. Whether you fart, scratch, snore, or forget the anniversary, it is all up there.
3. Before you get to know, the whole world will get to know that she is having trouble with her mother in law.
4. She will rant about how certain other blogs get more number of comments than she does though they write crap, and you are supposed to be sympathetic.
5. Should the template be Minima stretch or Minima lefty stretch? Template number 587 or 498? Tic Tac blue or stretch denim template? Certainly your decision making skills could be put to better use.
6. She claims that blogging is the only way of venting frustrations and letting out the steam whenever she is upset with someone. Including you.
7. You don’t want to live fearing the rest of your life that every morning you wake up, you’ll read a post starting “My husband is a…….”, with a hundred comments starting “Oh how could he?”, “He should…..” and “He should not……”.
8. You wake up from a nightmare that your wife has just made your darkest secret public, till you realize it wasn’t a nightmare. It was reality.
9. Every little nice thing you do for her will be up there on the blog. Every little mean thing you do to her will also be there up on her blog.
10. You are accountable for every female who comments on your blog, but you are not supposed to ask her about the males who leave comments on her blogs, because that makes you a suspicious, overtly jealous and possessive pig.
11. You are supposed to treat her out every time a blog of hers gets featured on DesiPundit or Blogbharti.
12. You are not supposed to take sides during heated blog discussions aka feline blog fights. You don’t have an opinion. You are her husband. You are to take her side. Always.
13. You would rather stay at home playing PSPs on the weekend than accompany her as the faithful puppy to be showed off at the local monthly blog meets.
14. Sometimes, the only way you can understand what’s up on her mind and why is she acting weird is by reading her blog. To discover that she was just having her periods.
15. Again and again, you will be given kasams to not read certain blog posts of hers. The whole world can know about it while it has to be a secret from you. And if you don’t, you are not giving her space or respecting her privacy.
16. You are in the middle of a Barcelona vs. Real Madrid game at your best buddy’s place when you get an SOS call from a common philanthropist friend- “Run home. You just forgot your wife’s birthday and it’s all over there on her blog”
17. You are not supposed to get jealous when you read about how she met her college crush and had coffee with him when you read it in her blog.
18. The world wasn’t supposed to know that you sleep in your superman underwear.

Unusual request - Lord Ram's comments on RAM SETU

Lord Ram's comments on RAM SETU It has been copied from one community of orkut, i liked it so i m posting it here...

Lord Ram's comments on RAM SETU
The Lord Shree Shree Ramachandra Prabhu surveyed the Ram Setu and said"Hanuman, how diligently and strenuously you and your vanara sena had builtthis bridge several centuries back. It is remarkable that it has withstoodthe ravages of the climatic and geographical changes over centuries. It isindeed an amazing feat especially considering the fact that a bridge atHyderabad built by Gammon using latest technology collapsed the other dayeven before they could stick the posters on its pillars."

Hanuman with all humility spoke "Jai Sri Ram, it is all because of yourgrace. We just scribbled your name on the bricks and threw them in the seaand they held. No steel from TISCON or cement from Ambuja or ACC was everused. But Lord, why rake up the old issue now."

Ram spoke "Well, Hanuman some people down there want to demolish the bridgeand construct a canal. The contract involves lot of money and lot of moneywill be made. They will make money on demolition and make more money onconstruction. "

Hanuman humbly bowed down and said "Why not we go down and present ourcase"

Ram said "Times have changed since we were down there. They will ask us tosubmit age proof and we don't have either a birth certificate or schoolleaving certificate. We traveled mainly on foot and some times in bullockcarts and so we don't have a driving license either. As far as the addressproof is concerned the fact that I was born at Ayodhya is itself underlitigation for over half a century, If I go in a traditional attire withbow and arrow, the ordinary folks may recognize me but Arjun Singh may takeme to be some tribal and, at the most, offer a seat at IIT under thereserved category. Also, a God cannot walk in dressed in a three-piece suitand announce his arrival. It would make even the devotees suspicious. So itis dilemma so to say."

"I can vouch for you by saying that I personally built the bridge."

"My dear, Anjani putra, it will not work. They will ask you to produce thelay-out plan, the project details, including financial outlay and how theproject cost was met and the completion certificate. Nothing is acceptedwithout documentary evidence in India. You may cough but unless a doctorcertifies it, you have no cough. A pensioner may present himself personallybut the authorities do not take it as proof. He has to produce alife-certificate to prove that he is alive. It is that complicated."

"Lord can't understand these historians. Over the years you have givendarshan once every hundred years to saints like Surdas, Tulsidas, SaintThyagaraja, Jayadeva, Bhadrachala Ramdas and even Sant Tukaram and stillthey disbelieve your existence and say Ramayana is a myth. The only option,I see, is to re-enact Ramayana on earth and set the government recordsstraight once for all."

Lord smiled "It isn't that easy today. Ravan is apprehensive that he maylook like a saint in front of Karunanidhi. I also spoke to his mamaMareecha, who appeared as a golden deer to tempt Sita maiyya when I was inthe forest and he said that he won't take a chance of stepping on earth aslong as Salman Khan is around."

Don't be serious... be sincere! Chetan Bhagat's speech @ Symbiosis

Don't be serious... be sincere! Chetan Bhagat's speech @ Symbiosis

Good Morning everyone and thank you for giving me this chance to speak to you. This day is about you. You, who have come to this college, leaving the comfort of your homes (or in some cases discomfort), to become something in your life. I am sure you are excited. There are few days in human life when one is truly elated. The first day in college is one of them. When you were getting ready today, you felt a tingling in your stomach. What would the auditorium be like, what would the teachers be like, who are my new classmates - there is so much to be curious about.

I call this excitement, the spark within you that makes you feel truly alive today. Today I am going to talk about keeping the spark shining. Or to put it another way, how to be happy most, if not all the time. Where do these sparks start? I think we are born with them. My 3-year old twin boys have a million sparks. A little Spiderman toy can make them jump on the bed. They get thrills from creaky swings in the park. A story from daddy gets them excited. They do a daily countdown for birthday party – several months in advance – just for the day they will cut their own birthday cake. I see students like you, and I still see some sparks. But when I see older people, the spark is difficult to find. That meansas we age, the spark fades. People whose spark has faded too much are dull, dejected, aimless and bitter. Remember Kareena in the first half of Jab We Met vs the second half? That is what happens when the spark is lost. So how to save the spark? Imagine the spark to be a lamp's flame. The first aspect is nurturing - to give your spark the fuel, continuously. The second is to guard against storms. To nurture, always have goals. It is human nature to strive, improve and achieve full potential. In fact, that is success. It is what is possible for you. It isn't any external measure - a certain cost to company pay package, a particular car or house.

Most of us are from middle class families. To us, having material landmarks is success and rightly so. When you have grown up where money constraints force everyday choices, financial freedom is a big achievement. But it isn't the purpose of life. If that was the case Mr. Ambani would not show up for work. Shah Rukh Khan would stay at home and not dance anymore. Steve Jobs won't be working hard to make a better iPhone, as he sold Pixar for billions of dollars already. Why do they do it? What makes them come to work everyday? They do it because it makes them happy. They do it because it makes them feel alive. Just getting better from current levels feels good. If you study hard, you can improve your rank. If you make an effort to interact with people, you will do better in interviews. If you practice, your cricket will get better. You may also know that you cannot become Tendulkar, yet. But you can get to the next level. Striving for that next level is important. Nature designed with a random set of genes and circumstances in which we were born. To be happy, we have to accept it and make the most of nature's design. Are you? Goals will help you do that. I must add, don't just have career or academic goals. Set goals to give you a balanced, successful life. I use the word balanced before successful.

Balanced means ensuring your health, relationships, mental peace are all in good order. There is no point of getting a promotion on the day of your breakup. There is no fun in driving a car if your back hurts. Shopping is not enjoyable if your mind is full of tensions. You must have read some quotes - Life is a tough race, it is a marathon or whatever. No, from what I have seen so far, life is one of those races in nursery school, where you have to run with a marble in a spoon kept in your mouth. If the marble falls, there is no point coming first. Same with life, where health and relationships are the marble. Your striving is only worth it if there is harmony in your life. Else, you may achieve the success, but this spark, this feeling of being excited and alive, will start to die. One last thing about nurturing the spark - don't take life seriously. One of my yoga teachers used to make students laugh during classes. One student asked him if these jokes would take away something from the yoga practice. The teacher said - don't be serious, be sincere. This quote has defined my work ever since. Whether its my writing, my job, my relationships or any of my goals. I get thousands of opinions on my writing everyday. There is heaps of praise, there is intense criticism. If I take it all seriously, how will I write? Or rather, how will I live? Life is not to be taken seriously, as we are really temporary here. We are like a pre-paid card with limited validity. If we are lucky, we may last another 50 years. And 50 years is just 2,500 weekends. Do we really need to get so worked up? It's ok, bunk a few classes, goof up a few interviews, fall in love. We are people, not programmed devices.

I've told you three things - reasonable goals, balance and not taking it too seriously that will nurture the spark. However, there are four storms in life that will threaten to completely put out the flame. These must be guarded against. These are disappointment, frustration, unfairness and loneliness of purpose.

Disappointment will come when your effort does not give you the expected return. If things don't go as planned or if you face failure. Failure is extremely difficult to handle, but those that do come out stronger. What did this failure teach me? is the question you will need to ask. You will feel miserable. You will want to quit, like I wanted to when nine publishers rejected my first book. Some IITians kill themselves over low grades – how silly is that? But that is how much failure can hurt you. But it's life. If challenges could always be overcome, they would cease to be a challenge. And remember - if you are failing at something, that means you are at your limit or potential. And that's where you want to be.

Disappointment' s cousin is frustration, the second storm. Have you ever been frustrated? It happens when things are stuck. This is especially relevant in India. From traffic jams to getting that job you deserve, sometimes things take so long that you don't know if you chose the right goal. After books, I set the goal of writing for Bollywood, as I thought they needed writers. I am called extremely lucky, but it took me five years to get close to a release. Frustration saps excitement, and turns your initial energy into something negative, making you a bitter person. How did I deal with it? A realistic assessment of the time involved – movies take a long time to make even though they are watched quickly, seeking a certain enjoyment in the process rather than the end result – at least I was learning how to write scripts, having a side plan – I had my third book to write and even something as simple as pleasurable distractions in your life - friends, food, travel can help you overcome it. Remember, nothing is to be taken seriously. Frustration is a sign somewhere, you took it too seriously.

Unfairness - this is hardest to deal with, but unfortunately that is how our country works. People with connections, rich dads, beautiful faces, pedigree find it easier to make it – not just in Bollywood, but everywhere. And sometimes it is just plain luck. There are so few opportunities in India, so many stars need to be aligned for you to make it happen. Merit and hard work is not always linked to achievement in the short term, but the long term correlation is high, and ultimately things do work out. But realize, there will be some people luckier than you. In fact, to have an opportunity to go to college and understand this speech in English means you are pretty damm lucky by Indian standards. Let's be grateful for what we have and get the strength to accept what we don't. I have so much love from my readers that other writers cannot even imagine it. However, I don't get literary praise. It's ok. I don't look like Aishwarya Rai, but I have two boys who I think are more beautiful than her. It's ok. Don't let unfairness kill your spark.

Finally, the last point that can kill your spark is isolation. As you grow older you will realize you are unique. When you are little, all kids want Ice cream and Spiderman. As you grow older to college, you still are a lot like your friends. But ten years later and you realize you are unique. What you want, what you believe in, what makes you feel, may be different from even the people closest to you. This can create conflict as your goals may not match with others. And you may drop some of them. Basketball captains in college invariably stop playing basketball by the time they have their second child. They give up something that meant so much to them. They do it for their family. But in doing that, the spark dies. Never, ever make that compromise. Love yourself first, and then others. There you go. I've told you the four thunderstorms - disappointment, frustration, unfairness and isolation. You cannot avoid them, as like the monsoon they will come into your life at regular intervals. You just need to keep the raincoat handy to not let the spark die. I welcome you again to the most wonderful years of your life. If someone gave me the choice to go back in time, I will surely choose college. But I also hope that ten years later as well, your eyes will shine the same way as they do today. That you will Keep the Spark alive, not only through college, but through the next 2,500 weekends. And I hope not just you, but my whole country will keep that spark alive, as we really need it now more than any moment in history. And there is something cool about saying - I come from the land of a billion sparks.

Jodi tor dak soone keu na asse... tobe ekla chalo re..

What should you do.. when no one endorses your dream, but you believe in it more than you believe in God.. when you do not know, whether you will ever be able to achieve it... when the dream, you foster day and night is too big for a mortal like you.. what should you do? Would you be able to settle in peace, if you die without putting every bit of yourself in the fulfillment of that long-cherished dream.... something, that is more important than any physical, pecuniary, mental or spiritual pleasures..

Ekla chalo re...

Yes.. you have to walk alone, not because you do not want people to accompany you.. but because that dream is too precious to be shared with 'just' any one. This is something, which you want to achieve only for yourself. You never want any acknowledgment for that, neither you want people to come and appreciate you. Its something that you have to do, because you came in this world with a burden of fulfilling it and you can never leave this world, leaving such an important task, incomplete.

Sacrifices have to be made. There is no time to think about the sacrifices. Great moments of happiness never come with a small price. Sometimes, they charge an entire life or may be the next also. But those who live only for that single moment, never worry about the price.. since they know that the moment next to that huge accomplishment, is no less than the salvation with open eyes, which is priceless.

Sometimes, the entire word appears to be so small. Nothing can stop you, till your heart is beating. And, if someday you find that adversities are staring at you, with their mouth wide open. You know you have to raise yourself till all the affliction becomes smaller than the smallest thing in the world.

I know, not many people would agree to come with me.. neither I want them. I know, I have to face lots of sufferings.. but so what.. there is a price for everything... I know, I would fall again and again... but in between those falls, I'll rise again and again.. I know, someday I'll get tired.. but that day also, the fire in me would burn with all its intensity.. and if this life remains insufficient to realise, what I call the purpose of my life.. I would be back.. and then again back.. then again back.

Sometimes, I wonder what was the mentality of freedom fighters? The persistence of Mahatma Gandhi, determination of Bhagat Singh, vision of Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel... have Indian mothers stopped giving birth to sons like them?

Jodi Tor Dak Soone Keu Na Asse
Tobe Ekla Chalo re
Ekla Chalo Ekla Chalo Ekla Chalo re

Jodi Keu Katha Na Kai Ore Ore O Abhaga
Jodi Sabai Thake Mukh Firae Sabai Kare Bhay
Tabe Paran Khule
O Tui Mukh Fute Tor Maner Katha Ekla Balo re

Jodi Sabai Fire Jai Ore Ore O Abhaga... sabai fire jai
Jodi Gahan Pathe Jabar Kale Keu Feere Na Chay
Tobe Pather Kanta
O Tui Rakta Makha Charan Tale Ekla Dalo re
O Tui Rakta Makha Charan Tale Ekla Dalo re

Jodi Alo Na Dhare Ore Ore O Abhaga.. alo na dhare..
Jodi Jharr Badale Andhar Rate Duar Deay Ghare
Tobe Bajranale
Apaan Buker Panjar Jaliey Nieye Ekla Jalo re

Jodi Tor Dak Soone Keu Na Asse
Tobe Ekla Chalo re

"Ekla chalo re.." meaning just walk alone... So here you go with the English translation:

If they answer not to thy call walk alone,
If they are afraid and cower mutely facing the wall,

O thou of evil luck,
open thy mind and speak out alone.

If they turn away, and desert you when crossing the wilderness,
O thou of evil luck,
trample the thorns under thy tread,
and along the blood-lined track travel alone

If they do not hold up the light when the night is troubled with storm,
O thou of evil luck,
with the thunder flame of pain ignite thy own heart and let it burn alone.

There is a Hindi version of this song also... from film 'Bose : The Forgotten Hero'

Jodi Tor Dak Soone Keu Na Asse
Tobe Ekla Chalo re..
Ekla chalo ekla chalo ekla chalo re..

Tanha rahi apni raah chalta jayega,
Ab to jo bhi hoga dekha jayega..

Bojh kitna ho mushkilo ka magar,
na jhuka hai na jhuk sakega yeh sir..
Zinda phir bhi rahega mera zameer,
---- ko maut bhi aa jaye agar..

tanha rahi apni rah chalta jayega,
ab to jo bhi hoga dekha jayega..

Baji pe lagane ki khatir, ab jaan hatheli par laye..
Ab chahe jiye.. ab chahe mare, jo hona hai wo ho jaye..

Manjil kabhi kya milengi humein,
hogi kya seher kabhi, jo rah hai chali..
Aaj har jawab humko mil jayega,
aa gayi hai aaj faisle ki ghadi..

Tanha rahi apni raah chalta jayega
ab to jo bhi hoga dekha jayega..

Jodi Tor Dak Soone Keu Na Asse
Tobe Ekla Chalo re..
Ekla chalo ekla chalo ekla chalo re..

Thanks to Rabindra Nath Tagore for rendering a song of this calibre..
also see my other Post on the same.. This song still kindles me to see the depth of the thoughts that he had expressed. Guys if you ever wanted to know how good a literary can be please do read Geetanjali - No Tagore got the Nobel.....

An Interview with Theo Jansen - The father of Strand Beests

Via - siouxwire

I first discovered Theo Jansen's work just over a year ago and immediately started correspondence with him. Today, we sat down for what is a key interview in the roster bringing together the worlds of science and art in the most natural and unexpected ways.

Theo Jansen studied physics at the University of Delft, Holland before becoming a painter. After his seven year career in painting, he started work on the UFO project which entailed the creation of an actual flying saucer that flew over Delft in 1980 causing pandemonium in the town and attracting considerable attention to his work.

For more than 10 years now, he has been working on the genesis of new nature in his Strandbeest creations which he envisions becoming completely autonomous, intelligent, wind-powered life forms. As an introduction to this work, here is his presentation on this fascinating project for TED:

Theo Jansen: The art of creating creatures

What prompted you to quit your studies of Physics at the University of Delft and becomes a painter?
I was young of course. The hippy period was there. I was distracted from my study by all these new dreams of people and a lot of friends of mine were artists and so I decided to become one as well and started becoming a painter.

And have you continued painting?
No, it stopped as soon as I started the UFO project at the beginning of the eighties and then the UFO project had such a success also media wise and I had been famous for about three months in my country for that and so I chased it more or less on bigger projects. After that, I couldn't paint anymore, sit in my studio and just paint. It wasn't possible anymore.

Following on from your painting, you seem to have had a desire to “work outside the box” and pursue new forms of expression through the painting machine and light sculptures. How did these projects develop?
After the UFO project, I had to do something more technical things and my interest for physics which has never been away during painting, it was really a rebirth in the technical interest after the UFO so I wanted to make something technical.

The painting machine was something interesting because in those days there were no printers yet so it was quite unusual to paint with a painting machine like that especially as the perspective of the images that came out of the painting machine because it made real size photos in front of the wall so the distance didn't matter at all. If a chair was standing a meter or 100 meters it would be the same size. That was the special thing about the painting machine because you could also make the opposite perspective objects with it so I also made photographs of chairs and tables which were in opposite. Things which were closer were smaller and things which were bigger were further away from the wall so it's just the opposite of normal perspective.

What did you learn from them?
My mind was really going on thinking. It made me change my living just for a lot of dreaming about abstract 3D forms in my head and the possibilities of machines. It really did change my thinking and my attitude. I was asked to write a column for a university magazine that really was sort of, this is a Dutch expression, “a stick behind the door”. That means that someone is standing there beating you up when you don't do your homework.

And did this work have any influence on your Strandbeests?
It surely had as this column really forced me to think about anything in the world and because every time I tried to find new, strange perspectives on reality and in effect, the strandbeests they started off as a column in the newspaper and that is about 18 years ago now and in the first period after that nothing happened. I had written the column and then half a year later, I got the idea of going to the shop and buying some of these tubes. I started playing with it and I did that for an afternoon and in the period of the afternoon, I decided to spend one year on these tubes, on these conduits because I saw so many possibilities in there. It turned out to be more than I could ever think of all those years ago.
"...I discovered that I was making new forms of life and by doing that I hoped to get wiser about our existence and our own forms of life."
With the Strandbeests, you have stated that you are making “new nature”; what is your intention in developing “new nature” and what have you learned from your work on the Strandbeests?
The motivation changed. I started off building robots that could gather sands and build up dunes to save us from the raising of the sea level and during working I discovered that I was making new forms of life and by doing that I hoped to get wiser about our existence and our own forms of life.

I have all kinds of theories about symmetry and about multiplying, the sequences in evolution by doing evolution again and new, I think I discovered a lot about the mechanism behind it.

I wrote about this in my book The Great Pretender where I have written many theories about life.

The Animarus Rhinoceros Transport

Are your creations entirely built according to functional parameters or is there some poetry in their design?
Well, the strange thing is that I don't want to make something beautiful. When I work, I always work on function and it turns out when it's finished, it usually doesn't function that well but I surprise myself how beautiful it appears.

Their forms are very beautiful, very poetic.
There's nothing I can do to that. That's sort of this secret artist in me which I'm not aware of secretly making beautiful things.

You have mentioned that the next step in your work is giving your creations brains. Have you made progress in this phase and what does this entail?
Well, the progress is that the nerve cells don't eat that much any more.

Would you briefly explain the nerve cells to put things in context?
Well, the nerve cells are the element, the basic element of the brain. You could also say it's a sort of computer. In a computer, the nerve cell divides where there is an input or output and my nerve cells work in the way that the input is zero and the output is one so it's the opposite from the input and that means if there is air on the input, pressure on the input there is no pressure on the output.

"...the brain will in future contain a time mechanism which runs parallel with the tides of the sea so they will know in advance when the sea is coming..."

With this principle, you can make a network just like in electronics. And so you can make binary counters, time mechanisms. For instance, the brain will in future contain a time mechanism which runs parallel with the tides of the sea so they will know in advance when the sea is coming up so they can go to the dunes before that.

Also, they have sensors which feel the water of the sea. That works quite well these days. They have a sort of tube which is going very close to the ground sucking in air all the time. As soon as it comes into the water, it swallows the water of the sea and then it feels the resistance of it and then it immediately goes the other way out of the sea again because it's longer.

One minute into the rolling surf, they're lost because they're sucked in and cannot come out any more. Future Strandbeests will have step counters which will be reset by feeling the water and they run away from the sea and they count the steps away from the sea so they know where the sea is.

This is what you could call a very primitive imagination. We have our imagination,we have a sort of mirror world in our head which represents the real world around us. It is a copy of the world and our world is very complex but the beach animals world is very simple. On the right hand side is the sea, on the left is the dunes and there's no disposition toward those two elements and so these nerve cells, one nerve cell, works quite well which it does now then the possibilities are endless.

Would you tell us about the animaris speculata that remained attached to its mother acting as a kind of scout? How did this develop and would you tell us a little about how it worked?
Well, it didn't work really well. I've advanced

Is this something you discontinued?
Yes, I stopped the process because I found better ways to feel the soft sand. The animarus speculata worked with a wire in there and there was a lot of friction. It would work a lot better now because the lungs, the wind stomach, plastic bubbles would be a lot better to feed the speculata. It turns out that when the animals run into the soft sand, then the pressure goes up in the animal and you can do this quite easy with a big force that can be pulled out again. These days, they are quite able to walk on soft sand as well, the dry sand.

Theo Jansen's workshop in Ypenburg, Holland

As well as your beasts, there are the programs you’ve developed from the worms simulation to the algorithms you now use for the evolution of the Strandbeests. How have these evolved over time?
I used the computer mainly to develop the lengths of the tubes in the feet. In the middle of each animal there is a sort of backbone which makes a circular movement. The circular movement is transformed into a complex movement down to the toe, the feet. That translation is very much depending on the length of the tubes in between and there are 12 tubes which determines the movement of the toe. The combination of lengths is very important so I wrote a genetic algorithm in an Atari computer to develop the right proportion of the 12 tubes and those were 12 numbers, a sort of genetic code which survived best and these genetic codes are just 12 numbers and I call them also the 12 holy numbers. They determine how the animals walk like they walk.

How important is the environment to you and your work?
Well, I don't think the PVC pipe which I use is very good for the environment. Of course, I never leave them on the beach as part of the environment. The way I work with wind energy is...

Would you consider the environment a partner in creation?
Yes, especially the big dangers on the real beach is the storms. They must always walk with their nose into the wind. When the wind comes sideways they blow over. I work now on programs so they always know where the wind comes from and they put their nose into the wind. Seagulls do the same thing when they are standing on the beach otherwise they would blow away as well.

The place where I work now is quite inland, about 10km inland to have a sort of sandpit, 30m x 50m, here I'm working on them until they're mature enough to go to the real beach because they're not strong enough to survive a very long time in the beaches more than 5 minutes.

So you have a nursery or training area?
Yes. Because the elements on the real beach are a lot worse than they are here. I really must train them a lot better. I think in about 4 years, I'll go to the real beach with the animals and I will have a sort of mobile studio which runs after them and I can do my repairs and hopefully I won't have to do it every third minute like I have to do now.

What was the last thing to surprise you and what did you learn from the experience?
There was an exhibition by a guy called Gerritcan Vakal. He was a Dutch artist and he died in '84 and he made also machines that run on the difference in temperature between day and night. They run very slow. I think they do 3cm a year and he put one of these machines in a desert in Nepal somewhere, he put them in the beginning there and it will be on the other side in 38 million years so that's very funny I think.

Are they still working.
Well, I think the machines never worked but the thought is very good. He is one of the artists that really inspires me. Always when I have an exhibition, I try to include his work.

Generally speaking, art and science tend to make for strange bedfellows with resistence from both sides. Photographer Felice Frankel for example refuses to accept that her work is art and the art world in general is having a difficult time coming to terms to massive influx of new media. Why do you think this is and how do you think the divide between the two can be improved?
Well, I think it is just another matter of what is in people's minds. It's just the institutes that make the people. I mean somewhere where you earn your money, it's what you are. I mean I think engineers are more artists than they want to know and because they work at the university they think well I'm an engineer I'm not an artist. People tend to exaggerate what they think they are. Artists do the same. This world tends to split up just because of psychological reasons.

"If you didn't give anybody money any more, you'll see the real artist and you'll see the real scientist and they'll probably be one person."

And do you think there should be more art in science with more emphasis toward creativity in its tuition?
Well, it's something you cannot force, these boundaries, these institutions give money. You tend to do what gives you the money or recognition. I think if those elements were not there like you have for Eskimos who doesn't have any institution, he doesn't know he's an artist when he makes a little piece of art and he doesn't know he's a scientist when he makes a piece on his canoe to hide him so he can shoot the seals.

If that is the purpose to be blank again and have no prejudice feelings about what you do, I think money would change a lot. If you didn't give anybody money any more, you'll see the real artist and you'll see the real scientist and they'll probably be one person.

Is there any advice you would give parents to nurture children in learning the skills you use?
Yes, well I think when kids go to school they'll usually learn a lot more from each other than they learn from their teachers. So I think putting in a school doesn't matter, if the environment of the kids is okay, they will learn a lot. They might not when they go to economic school or something, they might not become an economist. I don't think the direction or the subject of the school matters so much, I think the mentality is more important than what you study.

And was there anything in your own childhood that led to your current work? (outside playing with pipes)
No, I had a very average family. I don't know how this all came. I think the hippy times did a lot (laughs).

What kind of impact do you hope your work will have both in practical and artistic terms?
What I see now, a lot of people seem to recognize what I do in their own imagination and follow me in my fairytale and become sort of partners or participants. Obviously they don't work with me but stand behind me, support me and really talk with me as if they are part of my project. That of course is something for an artist is very nice when people seem to understand your work.

In the future I hope that these animals will develop in the end that they can live on their own and I don't have to cure them any more and at the end of my life that they will live for a long time after I'm done.

Thank you.
It was a pleasure to do this.

Theo Jansen Wiki
Theo Jansen (Art Futura)
Wild Things Are on the Beach (Wired)
Theo Jansen (TED Profile)
Interview (
Theo Jansen (Galerie Akinci)

chuppandeez blogs on Theo Jansen