Monthly Archives: April 2015
Our pick of apps that promise fake identities and a giggle or two
Our phones are loaded with apps for every need and occasion. But, aside from games, there arena��t many that can give us a laugha��like the popular Fake-A-Message app that can fool your friends into thinking you are besties with Shah Rukh Khan. Herea��s looking at other absurd options:
Fake Conversation: This app fakes an inbound call and even plays pre-recorded audio, so you can repeat whata��s being said and fool those around you into thinking you are someone you are not. The audio pre-sets include magazine editor, pilot, doctor, lawyer and more. Available on iTunes. Details: itunes.apple.com
Invisible Boyfriend/Girlfriend: This onea��s for singletons who are fed up with being asked about their special someone. You can not only create the profile of an imaginary partner, but the app will also let you interact with him/her through texts and voicemail. An introductory offer package includes 100 text messages, 10 voicemails, and one handwritten note. Details: invisibleboyfriend.com
Whatsfake: You can fake an entire conversation on a platform that resembles Whatsapp and fool your friends. This app lets you show if the a�?fake persona�� is online or typing, change the time of the messages and switch between sent or received. You can also share your fake chats, as it is integrated with Whatsapp, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and more. Compatible with iOS. Details: whatsfakeapp.com
With Australia winning the World Cup, it has put an end to all the talk about who the number one is. After all, only the winning team can lay claim to the title. Thata��s fair play and rightly so. But when it comes to being the number one radio station in India, the fair play scenario is not just relegated to the back seat it, it occupies the boot. There is no foolproof audience measuring device or even a TRP rating, like television hasa��a reason why everyone claims to have won the race.
Imagine a 100 metre dash where the runners insist they have all crossed the finish line at once, in spite of a visual reference that proves there is only one winner. Thata��s what many stations are into, thereby making the a�?number onea�� tag a joke. It all stems from the fact that there is no believable listener tracking method and that the radio unit itself has undertaken the task of figuring out the number of people listening to it. So the path followed is this: when no one is looking, quickly award that gold medal to yourself and, after a while, you will really feel like you have won it.
There is a questionnaire that stations create after many hours ofA� brainstorming, which has content that will boggle your minda��like what is your name, what time do you wake up and, finally, who, what and why do you listen to radio. There are other questions as well, which are very important, like what is your zodiac sign and if there ever was a second part to the movie I, should it be called a�?Ja��? About 50 unfortunate individuals are asked to make their presence felt and this questionnaire is handed to them. They tick the boxes in a flash and once thata��s done, ita��s time for refreshmentsa��which is bun and tea.
So the next time you hear a station trumpet the words a�?number onea��, maybe they just need to visit the rest room. See you next week with more radio talk.
The writera��s views expressed here are entirely in his personal capacity.
Dropping the bass
IndiEarth returns with their series of parties at The Park, that promote the most happening talent in the independent music category. Tomorrow, get ready for bass specialist DJ Su Real and the jazz-electronica combine of Nicholson X Fuzzy Logic (aka Arfaaz Kagalwala), who will perform at The Leather Bar (11 pm) and Aqua (8.30 pm), respectively. Details: 42676000
If intense house music is what you seek, we suggest heading to Blend at Taj Club House, where DJ Vijay Chawla will be performing. The city-based DJ is known for his versatility with techno beats, hip-hop, electronic, club and Bollywood music. Entry at Rs 2,000 per couple (cover of Rs 1,500). From 8 pm to 1 am. Details: 30925996
Ita��s a Japanese twist at Diff 42 as DJ Odoriko from Tokyo arrives tomorrow to give us a taste of his signature psychedelic beats. There will also be an opening set by DJ Eash, besides appearances by city-based UV body art expert Ko-Cha and photographer Mathew Gammon of Yew Tree Studio. Entry for stags at Rs 1,000 and free entry for couples. From 8 pm onwards. Details: 9842319191
Dance all night
Elixir at E-Hotel has the perfect plan to keep you hooked on the dance floor, tomorrow. In a show titled Dance Addicted, the bar will host two city-based DJs, Sameer Shroff and Varun Nagpal, who will treat the crowd to deep house, techno and house music. Choose from their collection of cocktails while youa��re off the floor. From 8 pm to 1 am. Rs 500 for stags, free for couples. Details: 30853767
After a successful inaugural edition last year, JFW magazine renewed its March for Change motif with the second JFW Womena��s summit. The event at Sheraton Park saw a packed house, thanks to, in part Ia��m sure, the illustrious panel of speakers. a�?Standards of beauty and body Imagea�� and a�?Can a woman have it all?a�� were the topics discussed, with hard-hitting facts and opinions being raised both on and off stage. Vidya Balan, who had a legion of fans in attendance, was not only funny and down to earth, but discussed these issues with a sincerity wea��re not quite used to seeing in celebrities. Nutritionist Rujuta Diwekar, also set to rest several doubts and misconceptions, about the a�?size zeroa�� phenomenon and her star client, Kareena Kapoor. Moderator Sanjay Pinto, the lone gentlemen on stage, proved that he was up to the task, asking the right questions as well as handling a more than enthusiastic audience.
The weekend saw an evening of art at Park Hyatt, presented by Gallery Veda, where special guests were invited to the preview of False Alternatives. Curated by Meenakshi Thirukode, the contemporary art show brings together pieces from a line up of national and international artists, instigating conversation around the theory that inspired the title itself. In line with the tradition of showcasing works of art in the lobby and areas of public interest, many of these pieces find pride of place, notably the life-sized winged man, by Chippa Sudhakar, already a popular a�?facea�� on everyonea��s Twitter and Instagram feeds. Guest of honour for the evening was Dr Bart De Groof, Consul General of Belgium in Chennai.
Meanwhile another group of people had gathered at the Sir Mutha Venkatasubba Concert Hall, to catch the Kutle Khan Project Live in concert. Their signature brand of Rajasthani folk continues to build a fan following across the country, evident from the extremely mixed audience in attendance. The entire venue was done up to reflect the theme, with swathes of sunset coloured fabric, ornate cycle rickshaws and life-sized puppets. And once the music began, the crowd was entranced from start to finish. Everything from heavy rhythmic beats, to notes that evoked images of rural Rajasthan, to even a Jugal Bandi with a little of The Beatles flavour thrown in. The audience was on their feet by the end of the show, asking for more.
Whata��s in the egg?
April 4 | London and Anna Nagar
If youa��re spending the weekend in London, be sure to pick up whata��s easily the best Easter egg of the year a�� the Bulgari Alain Ducasse Easter Egg. Inspired by the shaping of clay on a pottera��s wheel, this 75 per cent dark chocolate egg costs GBP45 for 400 gms. Available at bulgarihotels.com. Meanwhile, closer home, children gear up for egg hunts like the one by Piece of Cake in Anna Nagar. There will also be stalls and surprise gifts in store for participants. On April 4, from 10 am. Details: 9841188334
Just for laughs
April 4 | Taj Coromandel
Taj Coromandel is ready to ring with laughter as they host Madras Round Table 1a��s fund raising event, MRT1 Stand Up Comedy Night. The show will feature Harith Iskander (also known as the Godfather of Malaysian Comedy) and Shazia Mirza (an award-winning British comedian) and the proceeds will go towards an initiative to bring about better health and sanitation facilities in Chennai schools. On April 4. Donor passes at Rs 6,000 (inclusive of drinks and dinner). More on Page 18
Get your spa on
April 6 | Park Hyatt
Nothing beats some spa therapy after a tiring week. And Park Hyatt has just the thing. As part of their World Heath Day celebration (April 7), the hotel is launching a special package available throughout April. The three part package includes a 15-minute body massage and a choice of special fruit-based welcome drinks. At Antahpura Spa for Rs 2,900 per person. Details: 8939871205
Buzz minus alcohol
April 9 | USA
Step aside non-alcoholic beers and wines, here comes non-alcoholic whiskey. Florida-based company, ArKay, have launched ArKay Cinnamon Whiskey. With a combination of aromas like non-alcoholic American bourbon, Spanish sherry and Spanish Malaga, this beverage is priced at Rs 2,400 and is available on arkaybeverages.in
At the movies
April 3 | SPI Cinemas
After movies like Insidious and The Conjuring, James Wan presents Furious 7, the sequel to the sixth edition of the Fast & Furious series that released in 2013. This action movie stars the late Paul Walker, Vin Diesel, Jason Statham and Dwayne Johnson and revolves around Dominic Toretto and Brian Oa��Conner who seek revenge for the sudden death of Torettoa��s brother. Details: 42244224
Anushka & the IPL
April 7 | Kolkata
After the ICC World Cup, cricket fans have the 8th edition of the Indian Premier League to look forward to. Despite being the butt of many a joke about Virat Kohlia��s poor performance in the World Cup semi-final, Anushka Sharma is expected to perform at the IPL opening ceremony in Kolkata. The matches begin the next day with Mumbai Indians taking on the Kolkata Knight Riders. From 8 pm onwards. Details: iplt20.com
April 5 | Online
Amazon announces the Indian launch of the Kindle Voyage, the most advanced e-reader yet. It has a higher resolution and contrast display with a new adaptive front light and reimagined page turns, promising a reading experience without any eye-strain. Ita��s also Kindlea��s lightest device, at just 6.4 ounces. For Rs 16,499 on amazon.in
April 8 | Chennai
ShahNawaz Khan, a city-based app developer, has launched a new app, Relishious. It showcases signatures at various restaurants in the city, helping you decide what to eat and where you will get the best version of a dish. With Bengaluru, Gurgaon and Pune on the cards next, the app is available on Android and iOS. Details: relishious.in
For someone with a passion for the family business, it would come as a surprise that Chitra Pathi branched out and set up on her known. A third-generation jeweller of the Pathi Jewellers, her specialty lies in bespoke diamond jewellery. Her studio, christened Valanda, in Basavanagudi, she warns is not just a showroom. a�?My studio does not have trays of ornaments to choose from. I encourage buyers to look at designs on my computer and decide,a�? she shares.
Chitraa��s aesthetic is traditional with contemporary elements, a�?A piece of jewellery must be timeless. I do not follow trends and stick to classic designs,a�? she explains.
Valandaa��s latest line, entitled The Diamond Eclat, on display in the studio today, features an eclectic collection of necklaces, cocktail finger rings, ear studs, chand balis, bangles and more. Chitra has used white and yellow diamonds and pink sapphires set in yellow, white and rose gold. a�?Rose gold complements Indian skin beautifully and has recently gained a lot of interest,a�? she points out. Apart from the stunning designs, ita��s the rare cuts of the diamonds she employs that makes her pieces stand out. a�?Round cut diamonds are really easy to come by in India, but I use unusual shapes like princess, oval, pear and marquise liberally,a�? says Chitra, who interned at Ganjam Jewellers before setting up on her own.
Chitraa��s studio is also big on jewellery revival with most of their clients bringing in old family heirlooms to make them wearable. a�?I had this one client who brought in an elaborate turquoise and pearl haaram that we were able to turn into two necklaces, a pair of earrings, a bracelet and a ring by adding some more turquoise, rubies and pearls,a�? she recalls.
Orders take an average of four to six weeks to be completed.
At Basavangudi. Details: 9845395868
For KETAN Rahangdale, starting a million-dollar company before he turned 20 was never really on the agenda. Hea��d been DJ-ing at house parties and small gigs since he was 12. His biggest grouse playing live, though, was constantly tripping over a tangle of cables and wires emanating from his console. Rahangdale, however, soon found a way to turn this pet peeve into a business opportunity a�� he began working on making wireless headphones. In 2012, while still at the University of Miami, he started EarTop Technologies, a pioneer in wireless audio technology; he hadna��t turned 20 yet.
If therea��s a common thread that runs through the success stories of Facebook, Dell, DropBox, Reddit, SnapChat and list of other pathbreaking start-ups, ita��s that they were all founded by a bunch of college kids. Attribute it to the restlessness of youth, an obdurate tenacity to prove a point, greater exposure to information or the lower stakes involved in failing; our lifestyles are being shaped by ideas exchanged at keg parties or scribbled on paper napkins in sudden fits of inspiration towards the end of an all-nighter.
This trend augurs well for a country like India. According to a United Nations report last year, India has the largest and fastest growing youth population, with 28 percent of its population between 10 and 24 years of age (and 65 percent under 35). Against this demographic context, it is encouraging to hear the stories of young entrepreneurs like Ashrith Govind, the 20-year-old who started WiLoop.
Govind identified a business opportunity with a service thata��s perceived as near-indispensable in our metropolitan public spaces these days: wi-fi. WiLoop looks to create a series of what they call a�?WiLoop zonesa�?, within which registered users can log in and connect to the Internet. Theya��ve tied up with a series of cafes and restaurants that include the popular Smoke House Deli and Bierre Republic, which see sizeable footfalls all week round. But herea��s where they begin to add value: WiLoop also provides these establishments with customer analytics, so restaurants can identify key demographics to give their loyalty-building campaigns more focus.
Four months in, WiLoop has already attracted private investor interest. Additionally, theya��ve expanded to Hyderabad and are on course to make inroads into the capital City in the next month. For Govind, ita��s an exciting time, with decision-making for his company becoming a daily feature. And yet, with a few months to go before finals, hea��s hoping he has enough attendance to score a hall ticket and then graduate.
Director: Pierre MorelA�Cast: Sean Penn, Javier Bardem, Idris ElbaA�A dull and generic plot makes this one a luke warm film with the only redeeming factor being the aura of Sean Penn. He plays an ex-soldier who originally carried out a well-planned assassination in the Democratic Republic of Congo. What he doesna��t plan on is his past catching up with him and him having to clear his name, when hea��s trying to reconnect with his former lover and live life low-key. Do watch for a few intelligent dialoguesA�and star cast.
Director: Kenneth Branagh | Cast: Lily James, Cate Blanchett, Richard Madden, Helena Bonham CarterA�This revival follows the fairytale exactly, as director Branagh saw no need to change it. Ella (Eloise Webb and later James) lives a happy life with her parents, until both of them die. She is stuck with step-mother (Blanchett) and her evil daughters. But in canters Prince Charming (Madden) and things start to look up. While James is a great Cinderella and Helena Bonham Carter excels as the fairy godmother, Madden looks out of place, like hea��s missing the sets of Game of Thrones.
The Divergent Series: Insurgent
Director: Robert Schwentke
Cast: Shailene Woodley, Theo James, Kate Winslet
The defiant Divergents, Tris (Woodley) and Four (James), are now on the run, trying to escape the Erudite faction who still believe in their classification of society. Jeanine (Winslet), the leader of the Erudites believes that Tris holds the key to a secret that can completely destroy the Divergents. While Woodley does a great job, the poor plot and character development
let the film down.
Get on the dance floor and learn to
move your body to hip hop beats, with the new batch of classes starting at Genesis. Youa��ll learn everything from popping, locking and breaking foundations, as well as fully choreographed routines to popular tracks. Classes start from tomorrow, with weekend and weekday evening batches. Rs.2,000 per month, plus Rs.500 registration. At Jayanagar. Details: 9741599499
One night only
Vans night at The Humming Tree is a free concert series that brings together bands for a night of mad entertainment. Tonight, dona��t miss the chance to see Delhi-based electronica outfit Fuzzculture, alternative rock band Skrat from Chennai, and the citya��s own Banned, who describe their sound as a�?Indo-International mass musica��. At 12th Main, Indiranagar. 9 pm. Details: 9886618386
Some of the biggest names in Indian stand up come together for Laugh of the Titans, an evening that unites all varieties of comedy. With Sundeep Rao, Naveen Richard, Kanan Gill, Kenneth Sebastian and Praveen Kumar on stage you can expect your funny bone to be well and truly tickled. For 16 years and above. April 3, 7 pm. At Chowdiah Memorial Hall, Malleswaram. Tickets (Rs.625 upwards) on bookmyshow.com
Church Street Social
In typical Riyaaz Amlani style, this popular urban hangout celebrated its 1st anniversary offering cocktails and beer at Rs.1 all day. And later,
with all the enthusiasm of a one-year-olda��s birthday partya��yummy cocktails in baby bottles, bibs and return presents.
Taj West End
The Taj West End in association with Gallery g hosted a Botanical Art Show featuring wood chip installations and tree knot images by
popular artist Leslie Johnson. Guests enjoyed some fine art and conversation over cocktails and hors da��oeuvres.
Residents of Bangalorea��s first luxe residential complex, The Embassy on Ali Askar Road, celebrated 21 years of community living. Mohandas Pai and Stanley Pinto raised a toast to Bangalorea��s past and promising future, as guests enjoyed the wines, lavish spread and lively entertainment.
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