Thursday, February 9, 2017

Custom SETI at Home skin for Boinc

Dunno why I didn't do this a while back,
but heres a custom SETI skin for Boinc..

If your interested in making your own, download this template file  (svg, can be edited in Illustrator or Inkscape)
and then follow these steps:

1) make a copy of one of the existing skins.
(on windows theyre at C:\Program Files (x86)\BOINC\Skins

2) Copy it to a non C: folder so you can edit it without admin permissions.

3) Use the template file to replace your own background and logo. Save over the existing png file
eg: in the screenshot below its the file called "background_image.png

4) (you can skip this step if you like)
Open the "skin.xml" file in notepad and update all relevant links and names

5) save and close the cml file, rename this folder to your skin's name. Copy it to the Boinc skin directory, on windows - C:\Program Files (x86)\BOINC\Skins

6) exit and reopen boinc.

7) In the top menu go to View/Skin and click on your skin.

Have fun!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

The Rocinante finally gets a proper space battle

The Rocinante finally gets a proper space battle! Season 2 of The Expanse started off with a big bang! The crew puts together a raiding party and boards a space station.. after fighting tooth and nail against a big bad stealth ship!

Here are some highlights:

The amount of thought the production team put into the space battles is staggering..

case in point -
Even in the future armor plating is still too heavy to have on a space craft.. so when going into battle, depressiorise and store your air in tanks.. and cross your fingers as bullets swiss cheese the ship

We finally get to see the full maneuverability and gun capabilities of the Rocinante(and crew)


The rag tag team of belters had to patch together these DIY Boarding Pods.. and they worked pretty well! Complete with cable anchor system and blasting door 

Oh and I just discovered that #Syfy has an official #Thingiverse page with downloadable print files for stuff from their shows - #expanse wow!!

Friday, January 27, 2017

This made my day

A day after the harrowing night when I rescued an injured dog.. only to have it put down, because its injuries were too severe. (previous post)

I get to work and find this amazing card on my desk.
A belated birthday card from illustrator Kaveri Gopalakrishnan.

Made my day :)

Some days I hate my car

A four wheeler has many uses and advantages, but some days I just wish I'd taken the bike.
When I first got a 4 wheeler.. the biggest advantage, was that I could now take my dog to work with me. So after getting permission at work, I did.. for almost 10 years(multiple work spaces).

I loved having the car then,

- It meant that my dogs didn't have to be alone at home.

- I could take a nice refreshing dog walk during work, while others did their smoke/coffee breaks and most of all

- I could rescue injured animals and take them to CUPA
An example of one of those success stories - Rumi

I loved this automobile for enabling that. 

My dog is an invalid now, so she stays at home with my mom. Driving the car on the highway is now
something I don't look forward to.

Its been a while since I started feeling that way about it. Not the car's fault.. its just the responsibility I feel when I drive it. 

Every time is see an injured animal on the roadside.. I have to stop. While others go about their day ignoring the wretch.. I have to stop.. since I have a spacious back seat.

Like this little scamp from Aug 2016 ..
Aug 8 2016, Dodda Gubbi.

He was run over by a tractor and survived with a hip fracture.
Healed after a few weeks at CUPA and was placed with a family.

But there are many more that I don't tweet or Instagram..
..they're the ones that weigh me down. The ones that don't make it. 
I don't want to flood your timeline with sadness. 
Jan 23rd Hennur Road. rushed him to CUPA, but had to be put down. Injuries too severe.

I don't even take pics of most of them. 
Don't need to. They're etched in my skull.

These are the ones I think of when I drive past that stretch of road.. and wish I had been on my bike that day.. whizzing past the poor wretch on the road..
like most of us riders do.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

The Dam Project

This was the first project we worked on in 2017. It was an interesting one. Full of several firsts at Falana Films.

ATREE is a non-profit organization working to conserve India's biodiversity. They were celebrating their 20th anniversary with a conference in Bangalore City. The conference would feature several stalls by various departments of the organisation. We were commissioned to build a functional diorama of a dam on a river.

We started with this simple sketch..
..which was further refined, till we had the right kind of river and terrain planned out.
the next step was to mock it up in 3d and share it with the client..
We decided to use Sketchfab for this as it requires no plugins or apps to be downloaded and just works in the browser. 
The first model was a rough mockup of 
- The table (height and proportions)
- The proportion of the dam to the river
- The path of the river
- Basic outline of the plumbing system that would allow water to flow through the model.

    on Sketchfab

A subsequent model was shared to discuss the mechanics behind the dam itself, which would be 3d printed.

    on Sketchfab

Once these plans were approved it was time to get building.
The dam was printed in-house on a Makerbot running for almost 24hrs straight. It was printed with channels/holes that we could pump water through. 

The table was constructed using metal square tubes for the legs and Plywood for the top.

On top of which we build a tray that was water proofed and carnished. After that we started sculpting the terrain with styrofoam + plaster of paris + automotive clay 

Started painting it right away to make sure we had the right look..

The dam was sealed into place with epoxy compound and then the painting continued..
A video posted by chaitanya krishnan (@c2ktheotherartist) on
As per agreement, our team would paint the riverbed and river banks, since we had to waterproof it asap. The Atree team painted the rest of the model.

The Atree team added everything from endangered species that have been saved thanks to their NGO's intervention as well as .. certain ground realities of the regions they work in

The skimmer(Rynchopidae) starts nesting in the area again .

The gharial (Gavialis gangeticus)making a comeback

Dacoits(bandits) in the region!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

3December Challenge Day 27

Day 27: Legoalways wanted to make this, but never had enough 1s, 2s or flat 8s

    Lego helix
    by Chaitanya Krishnan
    on Sketchfab

Heres the normal map i used for the logo on each block, incase anyone needs it.

also dug up this old program i'd used a few years back when they launched it -
Lego Digital Designer
Free Download -
It lets you build whatever you like.. and then order the parts online. Earlier on there was no way to get a obj out of it so i gave up on it immediately..
but now you can get Leo CAD and that opens the lego file and saves as obj etc.
Free Download -
Anyway I used it to create something last night.. was fun doing this after a long time. Its a bit of a cheat for the 3December entry, hence not my official entry. Just something I played with last night.

You can see it below.. needs some smoothing and finishing.. the textures don't export apparently.

    Lego Craft
    on Sketchfab

Monday, December 26, 2016

3December Challenge Day 26

3December Day 26: Watch.
Used Inkscape to draft the filigree and engraving at the back(using various refrences)..
Blender and Sketchfab for the rest.

    The Special Pocket Watch
    by Chaitanya Krishnan
    on Sketchfab