Cancer and Marathon

For the first time, I hate being in the 40s. The only news I hear about these days is a friend’s parent expiring, a friend falling severely sick, another friend’s child being discovered with a life threatening disease or someone battling an incurable disease.

What times do we live in? There is work and there is suffering. Looks like there is no real good news anymore. And it pains and hurts you even more when absolutely good to the heart friends – one with no jealousy, no greed and no competition, are subject to disease.

For privacy reasons, we will call him G, who has been a wonderful friend since 1992. G joined Uof Fl in 1992 Sep, I was a semester ahead, having started in January 1992. So he and I took most of the classes together. We rode our bikes to the University together and like any other immigrant student from India in US, we had our stories of cooking in the kitchen. There were times, when what he was cooking would turn out burnt or too salty and he would come over to my apartment asking if what I was cooking can be made up for 6-8 guys. so I added 3 more glasses of water to my already watery rasam and helped him out.

After Univ, he too ended up in the lovely village of Nashua, NH. I remember buying a sign for the bathroom door as a gift for moving into his new apartment in Nashua – the sign said 

If you sprinkle When you tinkle, Please be neat And wipe the seat.

 He joined Oracle and has been here since 1994. We were buddies and then became family friends and eventually co-workers.

Last night, we found out that G’s son P, was diagnosed with Cancer – neuroblastoma ( My heart was shattered. Its like someone stole the smile from my face. As I write this with a heavy heart, we dont yet know what stage the cancer is in.

I cannot look straight at the face of my dear friend, in whose company I have spent the last almost 20 years and many a evening nights -playing cards, chess and hashing up ideas to conquer the world.

Now I am willing to go any length to help him out in the time of need. And above all, I was not planning on a long run this year.

But I think I will prepare for one – one of the last fall marathons. First we need to make sure P is out of danger and then the longer challenge -To dedicate this run and raise awareness for Cancer.

We need to eradicate this disease.

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Meditation and Neuroscience

I recently, took a class in meditation and am fascinated with it. And have been digging more on what effects meditation can have on our brain. Here is something interesting I found….

This is an article written by Dr. C.S. Shah

By simple definition, meditation is engagement in contemplation, especially of a spiritual or devotional nature. To elaborate further, meditation is an attempt to concentrate mind on a single form or an idea or an aspect of divinity at the exclusion of all other forms and the ideas. The mind is focused inwards, and this effort of concentration acts as stimulus to gain access to the knowledge of the object of meditation.    An attempt is made to control the sense perceptions (special senses like touch, sight, hearing, etc.), as well as thoughts, in favor of inner contemplation. The mind, as if, is made still. Meditation may be, therefore, taken as ‘passive’ activity! But is it really so? Tremendous changes observed in the human brain and nervous system during mediation run contrary to this belief of ‘passivity’ attached to meditation. Unprecedented progress and research in neurobiology, investigative neurology, and study of neurotransmitters in the last two decades has given a great fillip to the study of Neurophysiology of meditation and Yoga. Altered State of Consciousness can be brought about by hypnosis, drugs (e. g. LSD), sleep, etc., but here we are trying to study a state specific science of altered consciousness brought about by meditation alone.

We shall attempt to review the progress in neurobiology in the recent years. In the following article an attempt is made to throw light on this new and fascinating subject. The terms used are technical, but, as far as possible, an attempt is made to simplify the description. This attempt to explain the Neurophysiology is purely hypothetical.

Meditation and Changes in Neurophysiology:

In an attempt to enter into a state of altered consciousness, the Yogi try to concentrate, contemplate and meditate on a single idea or a form related with divine or spiritual. The brain may perceive this as psychological stimuli. One of the ways to control physiological reactions to psychological events is meditation, Yoga, Zen Buddhism etc. A few scientists had taken Transcendental Meditation (TM) as the uniform technique, and had based their observations on the study of the subjects engaged in this form of meditation. In summing up the results they confirmed that the effect of meditation was a “wakeful, hypo-metabolic state”. They concluded that the pattern of changes generated was mediated through the control of autonomic nervous system in the brain (limbic system) and spinal cord.

They have found that:

  1. Yogis could slow both heartbeat and rate of respiration,

  2. Yogis could slow the rate of metabolism as confirmed by decreased oxygen consumption and carbon-di-oxide output.

  3. EEG in Yogis showed changes of calmness in the form of alpha rhythm activity during both eyes closed and open recording.

  4. Their skin resistance to electric stimulation was increased (indicating increased tolerance to external stimuli).

In the early history of mankind the ‘defense-alarm’ reaction to psychological and physical stress was in the form of “fright, flight, and fight” mediated through the over-secretion of neurotransmitters and neuro-modulators dopamine and adrenaline by stimulation of sympathetic nervous system. We reflexively become panicky, our blood pressure increases, and stress and anxiety are the end results if we allow our natural age-old sympathetic reactions come to surface. We try to run away or fight the situation. But today these ‘defense-alarm’ reactions have no place in our lives. Rather, they should be replaced by more calm and serene reactions of equanimity and peace. The need is to just ‘face the brute, and it will go away’. Such desirable reactions of contemplation and peaceful attitude are generated by Yoga and meditation.

Here the usually dominant action mode is suppressed in favor of receptive mode that brings peace and bliss even in the disturbing circumstances. It is thought that the left half of the brain is dominant in right-handed people, while right half is said to be non-dominant. However, the transfer of functions from one half to another can occur with learning and practice. This has been shown to occur in persons who had neurological damage to one side of the brain. Increasing knowledge of neurobiology and brain imaging techniques is further reinforcing the role of plasticity after neuronal damage with the stimuli from practice, intense concentration and experiences.

EEG Studies on Yogis and The Zen Meditations 

Yogis practicing Raja-Yoga claim that during the state of Samadhi they are oblivious to the internal and external stimuli, and they enjoy a calm ecstasy during that state. A study was undertaken to record the electrical activity of their brain during this state by means of a regular and useful test known as electroencephalography- EEG. Physiological and experimental studies have demonstrated that the basis of the conscious state of the brain, among other things, is activation of the reticular system of the brain stem through internal and external stimuli. These stimuli bring about various changes during sleep and wakeful states of the organism that can be studied by EEG.

The study was carried out on four subjects during the state of concentration and meditation. Effects of external stimuli, like a gong, strong light, thermal simulation, and vibrations were studied. The results were compiled and analyzed. It was observed that two Yogis could keep their hands immersed in very cold water for 50 minutes or so (raised pain threshold). During the state of meditation, all of them showed persistent alpha activity with increased amplitude wave pattern, both during eyes closed and open recording. It was observed that these alpha activities could not be blocked by various sensory stimuli during meditation. It was also observed that those who had well-marked alpha activity in their normal resting records showed greater aptitude and zeal for maintaining the practice of Yoga. Similar observations and results were obtained when EEGs were recorded in persons adept in Zen Meditative technique.

Discussion and Conclusion 

Neurotransmitters and Neuro-modulators: These are chemical substances released at the neuronal junction (Synapses). They act by altering the electrical membrane potential by opening up channels that permit diffusion of Sodium, Potassium, and Calcium ions in and out of the nerve cell. They not only transmit the message from one cell to another, but also selectively facilitate some information while inhibiting the other. Moreover, the action of Calcium ions permits transfer of electrical events into molecular changes that can alter functions of the nerve cells permanently, i.e. change cellular function to subserve a memory or learning response.

Neuro-modulators affect the neurotransmitters by influencing neuronal plasticity, growth, or differentiation. Different types of receptors as present in different regions of brain can account for the complex multiple effects of medications, meditation, concentration, and contemplation. This may be effected through actions of specific type of neurotransmitter and neuro-receptor.

For example, a sub-type of glutamate receptor appears to mediate the function of brain plasticity, a process considered important in learning and memory. Acetylcholine helps in memory, motivation, perception and cognition. It is also involved in attention and arousal functions of ascending reticular system. Decrease in the levels of this neuro-modulator leads to loss of memory, senile dementia-Alzheimer’s disease. 

Excess of Serotonin, another important neuro-modulator, leads to hallucinations, as seen in LSD consumption, which causes increase in Serotonin level. This discovery brought into focus the correlation between behavior and variation in brain Serotonin content. Selective depletion of Serotonin, in animals, causes prolonged wakefulness. It also plays important role in circadian rhythm and sleep cycle. 

Other neurotransmitters and modulators like nor-epinephrine cause changes in mood-excess leading to elation, and deficiency causing nervous depression. It also controls food intake, regulates body temperature, and hormonal secretions. Excess of dopamine level is responsible for schizophrenia and psychosis. Nerve growth factor is a hormone like peptide that is responsible for the growth and maintenance of various brain structures.

The Plausible Hypothesis

To explain the altered state of consciousness brought about by intense and prolonged mediation a Plausible Hypothesis may be constructed as follows:

The evolutionary process adds higher centers to the primitive nervous system. These higher centers have inhibitory influence over the lower centers. Thus, the brain stem is controlled by limbic system and limbic system in turn is controlled by the higher new brain center – neo-cortex. The neuro-modulators with their influence on various neurotransmitters effectively bring about this inhibitory modification in inter-relation amongst various brain centers (hierarchy). For instance, involuntary movements are suppressed by basal ganglia through the action of dopamine and acetylcholine synergy. Any imbalance in these neuro-modulators causes involuntary movements like chorea and tremors. Similarly, loss of cortical control over the motor neurons of spinal cord leads to exaggerated muscle and tendon jerks due loss of inhibitory control of the higher cortex.

Neo-cortex keeps all the involuntary movements, hyper-reflexivity, rage, aggression, and similar animal tendencies under check so that it can effectively pursue its own highly developed activities of logic, memory, reason, language, calculations, judgment, and concepts, etc. Conscious, willful, imaginative functions are therefore, normal state of awareness of the human beings.

When meditation acts as a constant repetitive stimulus, certain qualitative and quantitative permanent changes develop in the nervous system. The neurotransmitters and neuro-modulators may stimulate growth of dormant or latent neurons to develop a center (or centers), which on the evolutionary ladder is/are still higher than the present day cerebral cortex. The brain may develop new connections and plasticity resulting in the capacity to think, to rationalize, and react in a different way to the sensory input than what is expected by present day physiologists. For want of name, we may label it as ‘God Module’. This higher center will exert inhibitory control over the present day neo-cortex, and thereby, over the mind as a whole (consciousness, reasoning, conceptual thinking, willing, feeling, and doing, etc.)! The consciousness and all mental activities will hence be suppressed. The person will reach a state beyond mind itself-transcendental awareness! 

“The spiritual ascent is from the least evolved state of consciousness to near perfect state, after which the mind itself will cease to be, and there will remain only non-dual experience.”  

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Limoncello, Gnocchi and Dum Maaro Dum

Limoncello evening with Italian food and Dum Maaro Dum sounds like a perfect
evening. Heres how you can take over the kitchen and prepare a nice evening for
your loved one for mother’s day. Keep  your loved one away from kitchen for a
night and prepare something for her. I dont drink on Sunday evenings, so I
decided to treat ourselves to a Italian night on Saturday, a day before Mother’s day.

Limoncello is an Italian lemon liquer. As the name goes, it is made from
liquer. It comes from the Amalfi coast of Italy, where food is religion.
Typically this is supposed to be taken as an after dinner drink for digestion
but the creative geniuses, have modified this to be used in cocktails and
martinis. So we head to the bar, to create a limoncello martini.

But what about the dinner and a movie? For dinner we will have crescent rolls
and gnocchi (pronounce – kno – w-chee). The movie will take a back seat until
later. But we are going to watch Abhi and Bipasha. and gulp down some martini
while Deepika sizzles.

We will go with frozen gnocchi – available at all major grocery stores.
Gnocchi is made from semolina (sooji) , carefully shaped into small
bug-like shape. to cook it just empty the contents of the frozen packet into
boiling water and cook it for 5 – 10 minutes. toss the cooked gnocchi in pan
with some olive oil. For the dish gnocci is often prepared with sauces. White
creamy alfredo sauce (shown above)  or red pasta sauce or pesto sauce.
We are modifying the recipe and keeping it simple. We decided to go with sauteed
broccoli rabe.


These are like baby broccoli – mostly leaves – chop it, sautee it in a pan
with minced garlic. put it over you plate of cooked gnocchi and there you have
it. put some parmesan cheese over the dish, to garnish. Less than 20 minutes

Crescent rolls again can be picked up at your grocery store. The one I use
are made by Pillsbury. These are pre-made and packaged into a tube. Pop open the
tube – you get about 8-12 dinner rolls in a tube. Follow directions on the

Pillsbury Crescent Rolls

So add another 20-30 minutes while this is done in the oven. If you can
manage multiple stuff. You can make the gnocchi and the Cresecent rolls  in

Limoncello martini is simple. There are a variety of cocktails that you can
perhaps surf and obtain from the Internet. But here is what I do…

1.5 oz of Limoncello

2 oz of lemon flavored vodka ( I use Three Olives brand)

Lemon rind for garnishing.

Mix these in a cocktail shaker with ice nad pour into a Martini glass. Add
the twisted  lemon rind.

Now you can head on towards the living room with your gnocchi dish and the
drink take the best seat in the house and take sum Dum.

I found the movie to be watchable. It comes very close to Hollywood . IMO
there are few directors – Rohan Sippy, Madhur Bhandarkar and perhaps Vishal
Bhradwaj who can take Bollywood movies to the line of Hollywood movies.

Abhi and Rohan, both classmates at Boston University, have teamed up again to
release another flick. Rohan Sippy has used massive editing to tell the story
very well. DMD is a thriller, a mystery with lots of drugs, few sex scenes and
some murder, shot  in the backdrop of Goa. A story that goes into the
underbelly of the drug problem in Goa. That’s why it gets an A rating.
Goanese culture is shown veyy well in the movie.

I did not care for the songs. Aby Baby continues on with his Thai Thai rap
number. It’s a good attempt. But the  rap from BluffMaster was really nice. I
listen to that occassionaly, even today. The item song by “Ms Leggy Legs”
Deepika does not come any where near Munni or Katrina’s bellydance. I
would rate Munni’s item number the best. Ms. Leggy is also no where near
Zeenat Aman in the evergreen song by the same name DMD . Ms. Basu has a
very subdued role. Bipasha ‘s dialogue, “Here in Goa, liquor is cheap but girls
are cheaper” has been edited out to please the Goan lawmakers. Surprise is
Aditya Pancholi, we are seeing him after a long time and that too as a villian.
He plays his part well.

So there you go – This Mother’s day, prepare dinner, drinks and movie  for
your loved one, without leaving home.

Grande Bellisimo! which means grand and beautiful in Italian.

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Break ke Baad with Strong Beer

I am not a beer drinker these days, as I used to be 20 years back. Those were the days,
we used to finsh off 24 bottles of 12 oz. beer in one sitting among 4
roomies.Regular beer like – Budwieser, Michelob, Coors, Milwauke’s Best etc. are
affordable alcoholic beverages. There are speciality breweries- called
microbreweries, they do not manufacture beer in bulk, and  restrict
themselves to speciality brews often added with hint of fruity or high alcohol content, speciality hop, etc. Microbrews tend to be available only in certain markets or
available at a bar on tap.

There are many strong microbrews available at liquor shops, or grocery stores
around the nation. The microbrew that tends to be famous around here in Boston
is Sam Adams. They do have a strong beer the one with Summer Wheat which has 10%
alcohol content. Its not summer yet over here, and for a still chilly (nippy as
they call it here in Boston) Friday evening, I stayed away from the local

The one I like and recommend is Steel Reserve, brewed by well – a company by
the same name from California. This has 8.1% alcohol content. This malt beer has
lighter body, cleaner and crisper. Presence of high alcohol content is noticed
when you finish the sip. I recommend to gulp it down. As the beer goes down
smoothly through your throat you will feel the alcohol .

Its in such a dizzy state you can watch a movie like “Break ke Baad”.

Cant say much about the movie. The cast is good, but the direction, screen
play give you a heady feeling . You ought to have steel nerves to stay through
till the end.

The movie draws inspiration from DDLJ, KKHH and Dil Chahta Hai, as it is shot
in Gold Coast, Australia. Its a movie about relationship told rather poorly.
Well it falls severly apart with crazy acting from Ms.Padukone, who has tried to
imitate Sridevi, ‘a la Mr India. Imran Khan is calm and composed, one wonders
whether he should take on movies like this to secure his future in Bollywood?
There is too much Westernization in this movie  and one is left ruminating
whether modern India is fascinated by Hollywood?

Girls rebeling, talk of sex at 20, beach side rave parties, and er we do not
know whether there was a one-night stand – your WAG (Wild Ass Guess) would be as
good as mine. I wonder if in reality such things happen with youth today in
India? And which parent would allow their teenage daughter to wear ultra-short
shorts? That’s the attire, leggy Ms Padukone has sported throughout the movie.  I do not
know of any Indian parent here in US, maybe people in India do. And the movie is bit unrealistic
throughout – Tell me a person you have come across, that wears ultra-short
ripped jeans shorts, that perhaps costs maybe $80, but does not have a home to
stay, so ends up at a wonderful island  resort in Gold Coast,
Australia –  with a fully stocked bar and a room that costs $100 per month !
with a nice bed to spare. Drinks on the house. And the amount of cell phone talk with International minutes would be more than the cost of the ultra short jeans!!

Interesting life!! If you care to watch – gulp down Steel Reserve.


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Dil to Baccha Hai Ji

After a hiatus of almost 2 months, I am back again at my pastime indulgence
– Cinema and Cocktail. Leg breaks, Googly and the Doosra kept me out of
this pastime. It was a memorable time- India winning the World Cup in India, and
my pastime took a back seat. Now Cricket is run of the mill – been there done
that – lets put the  focus back on  Cinema and Cocktail.

Dil to Baccha Hai Ji

It’s a Madhur Bhandarkar film , and the topic is unlike Chandni Bar, Page
3, Traffic Signal, Fashion
or Jail. Madhur now dwells in to look
at the Romantic side. He has handled the subject very well. DTBHJ is a comedy.

Men ogling at women with plenty of innuendos, is the main  topic. Full of
clichés and yet has the potential to keep that smile on till the movie
ends. Kinda the movie you would expect from Hrishikesh Mukherjee or Basu
Chatterjee with Amol Palekar. Gives you the vibes of simple movies from the 70s.
Which you can watch in a relaxed way. Definitely not the 7Khoon Maaf you’d want
to see on a Friday evening, after a hard week at work. Newcomers Omi
(from 3 Idiots), Shazahn Padamsee and Shruti
all are given suitable roles that they play well. Ajay Devgan
provides the senior role and the foundation. Shruti Hassan, I must say has got
some good genes from her mother Sarika. She looks prettier than Sarika, I am
glad that none of her father’s genes were prominent except for the name. Sarika
in our times embodied the sizzling gorgeous beauty. I still cannot forget the
scene from Vidhaata in a swimsuit. She  definitely looked hotter than
Bo Derek. Pritam’s music is decent. I really liked the number – Yeh Dil Hai
. Movie is  good. Madhur has definitely come back with the magic
of Corporate, I think he should stick to these themes.

Blood Oranges are a
native of Italy. Widely cultivated in Southern Italy and parts of Sicily. It
used to be years ago that Blood Oranges were to be seen at grocery stores in US
only during Fall and Winter. And were hard to find. But now we readily get it.
Since Blood oranges are  cultivated  now in Texas and California. And moreover
with the market style that US is so akin to – we now get bottled Blood Orange
Juice. Perfect for Martini’s and Margarita’s. I used – Trader Joe’s Blood Orange

Blood Orange has a dramatic ruby red color and is sweet and tangy. High
content of vitamin C – perfect to counter the allergy season, here in New
England. What would ogling be without some Margarita? – Blood Orange Margarita,
that is. So while we talk about a movie like the yester years Hrishi Da and Basu
da –  why not enjoy a drink and watch a movie that reminds us of the 70s. To
hell with Lokpal bill and Jasmine Revolution.

Here’s how you mix it. This
makes 1 drink.

  • 2 oz. blood orange juice (Trader
    Joe’s Blood Orange juice
  • 1.5 oz.tequila (Herradura gold tequila
    is what I use
  • 1 oz. triple-sec
  • 0.5 oz. simple syrup (1 part sugar, 1 part
  • sweetened lime juice, just a splash
  • blood orange or tangerine wedge,
    for garnish
  • Add the first 5 ingredients to a cocktail
    shaker filled with ice; shake vigorously.
  • Strain into a chilled and salted margarita glass filled
    with ice cubes.
  • Garnish with a blood orange or tangerine

Simple. Hope you enjoy your drink, whereever you are. Put the DVD into
your Home Theater – forget work, relax and enjoy. Let the 70s mesmerize

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Biking to Work

This is the route I will be riding this summer to bike from Nashua to Burlington. What is typically 18 miles by car will now be 30 miles by bike.

Amount of gas saved : About a Gallon. $3.49 per current gas rate

Amount of wear and tear : Estimate at $3000 per 12000 miles in a year = $5

Time taken by car = 30 to 40 minutes.

Time taken by bike = 2 hours initially but over time Plan to reduce this to 1.5 hours

Being Green = PRICELESS

This route has rolling hills and total elevation gain is 792 feet. This will help me get the training and form to participate for the Memory Ride this year.  I have pledged to raise $500 or more for Alzhiemer’s Foundation. I will be riding 62 miles or 100km.

Contribute geneorusly….

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Wiring up my home for 1Gigabit ethernet

I had always wanted to setup a home network that would control not only all the PCs in the house, but also be able to connect to my entertainement system and allow me to watch streaming movies over the Internet using Netflix or other Internet devices like Apple TV or WD Live TV.

Well this dream started becoming a reality in February 2011. The motivation was dual purpose. I was paying too much for cable TV (i.e Dish TV), $100plus and wanted an alternate method for watching TV. There are devices available in the market today which carry recorded shows from most chanels online via boxes like Roku. I wanted to simplify the number of Internet connected devices at home. So here it is –

The Requirement: Dream of a connected Home

The list of Internet devices in my household are

2 Dish recievers, 4 PCs, 1 XBox, 1 Nintendo Wii, A bluray disc player and the Reciver for my entertainement system, and a mirrored 1TB disc for all home media – pictures, home videos and DVDs etc.,  plus work laptops for both me and my wife. Thats at least 12 connections around the house! Besides, wanted to accomodate for future growth and proliferation of Internet devices. Who knows there might be a case for a Internet enabled refrigerator, microwave, washer, dryer etc. There could also be Internet enabled home security systems. I wanted to make it easy for plugging these devices in future.

I also wanted to have access to my home network from outside the house. I wanted to VPN in into my home network as well as VPN out.

The Decision

I decided to purchase the following

A gigabit router from Netgear

This router had wireless-N capability and dual-band, so I could give guest access to internet in my house for people who came with their own laptops. And it had the capability for allowing 5 VPNs from outside

A gigabit 24-port switch from Cisco

This was a general purpose 24-port switch that allowed for traffic prioritization.

I also ordered a mini-rack to consolidate all nework points in one place and to be flexible for change in future.

The WAN connectivity was my standard 11Mb(up)/ 5MP(down) FIOS connection.

The build out

I wanted to start off small and grow the network later. So at a minimum, I wanted to lay down about 20 individual wires from the network closet to different parts of the house, where these would be terminated into individual RJ45 points.

1st Step:

The first step was to get the wall mounted rack up on the basement wall. This is the place where the switch and the router would go. I also chose to go with a superior surge protector in the rack itself.

Step 2: Drawing Wires

So the architecture I have is

FIOS <> Netgear Router <> Cisco Switch  > 24 cables to 24 points

I had to snake thru 24 cables to various parts of the house. I show one here

I decided to go with RG6 cables meant for CAT6 that can support upto 10Gb ethernet. This is again to future proof the house, not that I will be going 10Gb anytime soon. For now 1Gb is sufficient and cost effective.

Here I show sending cables through the cieling in the basement (see the insulation), as well as a twine that was pulled, so that I do not have to poke through the cieling again. Instead I can just drag other cables using the twine.

Here the cables I pulled from the cieling are shown coming out of the wall along with the twine. Now this will beterminated with RJ45 wallplate.

Next was terminating all the leads into a patch panel and a router. I chose a Cisco small business router – SG102-24. following is a screenshot of the same

The Black leads go from the Patch panel to the switch. The white lead goes from the switch to the router. I chose a Netgear SRXN3205 router. The yellow lead goes into a 2TB SAN (Storage area network). The green lead goes into rest of the computers in my study.

The router also provides Wireless-N networking … which I can split into a guest network as well as a private network. So guests can enjoy Full surfing capabilities, if they come with their own smart phone and/or laptops or iPads. Here’s a screenshot of Wireless connectivity

The tall antenna is a high dB antenna that can reach all corners of the house. The bunch of blue and yellow cables are all CAT-6 cables running to different parts of the house and being terminated at the patch panel. The white flat cable that you see is a phone cable that goes all around the house and connects to Vonage via the router and bring VOIP to the house.

Here are two other links and videos that helped me

How To Punch Down Cat5e/Cat6 Keystone Jacks

How to Make an Ethernet Cat5e/Cat6 Cable

To Be Done

  1. OTA HDTV antenna.
  2. labelling all wires and making the entire setup foolproof.
  3. Other extensions to a smart home- enabling internet based home security, controlling appliances and lights via a smart phone etc.


Here are the benefits of wiring up my home

The Benefit

  1. Ability to use Free-to-Air HDTV antenna.
  2. Ability to watch seamless streaming movies via netflix
  3. Ability to distribute content to all parts of the house
  4. Usage of Vonage for phone in the house
  5. Switch to Roku box and Hulu+ for recorded TV shows
  6. Switch to Jadoo TV box for Indian TV content
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