The Flaky Open Source Drupal and the Inconsistent iMechanica Policies

Firstly, today, I repeatedly tried to write an answer to a query at iMechanica, but was failed in all my attempts. Blogging here is so much more easier. Why do issues keep repeatedly coming up only at iMechanica?

Secondly, then, for some reason(s) I cannot fathom, just when I had succeeded in putting up *something* (a rough, initial draft), the iMechanica site refused to let me edit my own comment.

Thirdly, I notice that iMechanica moderators have allowed all of the following to appear on the front page of iMechanica:
(i) a PhD post ad by a The Netherlands researcher
(ii) an amateurish sort of a post by a doctor (with an Indian sounding name) concerning electric vehicle; (not that I consider amateur as bad), and
(iii) a post asking the meaning of the term “CFL” of CFD.

However, the same group of moderators have in the recent past found that my post related to MTech/ME/BTech/BE projects was not suitable enough to be published on the first page. They did not wish to give the matter (esp. the content) the prominence it rightfully did deserve.

Is it some kind of vengeful tactic by some pressure groups, or is it some individual “moderators” whose *sentiments* I have come to hurt? I can’t be sure which one is the case. Or is it that the Western countries love to keep portraying the idea that good research only gets done in their countries so that all (actually) brilliant students must flock to their universities? Is that the issue here? Possible. But I don’t know if that was the cause either.

Or, is it the case that my references to or to have come to anger them? Hurt them—objectively speaking? Again, I can’t be sure and certainly don’t know.

I mean, this all is still different from the high-handed manners of so many Americans (including those at iMechanica). Consider their tactics. Not addressing me by name in their replies (thereby making it a general reply) even when common sense demands so; making it look as if none is taking my reply seriously through the tactic of inserting a vacuous reply to some comment which appears somewhere *way above* my recent comment; digging up petty issues (I can cite specific examples to let you see that these indeed were petty issues); and now, even relegating my posts away from the front page!!

Not just that, there also are other matters that compromise the credibility of that site. Consider this fact. It is considerably populated by the (English-speaking) Chinese. Not an issue by itself if you ask me, but consider this. When Prof. Suo received an outstanding honor recently (selection on national academy), there were messages after messages praising him… Alright. Hero worship is a good thing by my philosophy. And so is honoring someone’s achievements. (I did congratulate Prof. Suo then, after waiting for a while, just to see who all spontaneously put in a message there, including from India. If I remember it right, finally, Guru of IISc Bangalore and now in USA did put in a message!) But then, what happened to this same set of people when Prof. Sia Nemat-Nasser, it was announced, is this year’s Timoshenko Medal winner? Or are we supposed to believe that people better know Suo’s research than Nemat-Nasser’s? Is this the case? Or the motivations (or the motivators) of a rather different nature?

But whatever be motivation(s) (and motivators) regarding all the above (and similar) things, I think at least the recentmost treatment that I received is, at least *inconsistent*—if not outright unjust.

I also think it is high time I let the world know that I have taken cognizance of that inconsitent treatment (not to mention all the other matters I jotted down above).

All my policies for dealing with such happenstance were already worked out by me, and I will act on them too. Anyone (within reason that is) is free to contact me if he so desires.

But yes, I meant to express my displeasure with iMechanica in no uncertain terms.

Now, what my edited draft would have looked like, in reference to one Ashish Katarkar’s query at … Here we go; it’s 12:12 PM IST on June 26, 2008.


0. Also see the other side of global warming and pollution—to my mind, the right or the true side, in fact. To begin with, follow this link: You might want to use “pollution” in place of “global warming,” too.

1. About electric car: By your name, I presume you are from India (probably from Maharashtra). If so, see and the links therein, esp., In any case, do have a look at:

BTW, I am not familiar with the Ca-Ca battery technology itself.

2. About recharging. I am not very sure what you mean here, and given your wording, I guess, none can be. But thinking of all the times when people put forth wrong ideas, let me mention something in passing here. There is this wrong idea of charging the battery of an electric vehicle (i.e. an electric battery – > motor vehicle) using a dynamo, as it begins cruising. Now, this idea violates the second law of thermodynamics.

3. The so-called hybrid cars (of a very reputed Japanese make) were recently introduced in India. They made it work for cars. However, for a scooter, I think the idea may not be so appropriate. In fact, it might make the scooter somewhat bulky, and so, less efficient in using either kind of a drive. Further, recharging a low kVA battery like the one they have in a scooter, using the usual household electricity sockets, would not be a major issue. If the availability of electricity is problematic, and if you must have an electric vehicle, then, for a higher cost (i.e. after discounting the usual subsidies given for the household electricity and taking the burden of non-economy of scale), rather than mount a petrol engine and a dynamo on a scooter, it would be better to use a stationary gen-set like what they routinely use in shops in India.

4. As an aside, I had some ideas to try out in cooperation with a doctor—ideas related to diagnosis, instrumentation and computerized signal processing (like, say, FFT or wavelet analyses). If interested, please get in touch, giving your contact details.

Reply to Ashish Katarkar at iMechanica over.