IIT Bombay's free online lectures

Imagine sitting in the comfort of your home, brushing up on artificial intelligence or quantum physics. And by brushing up we don't mean flipping through a heavy tome that will have you dozing in no time, instead, you are watching a professor at IIT Bombay explain the intricacies of the subject complete with graphical presentations and visual aids.

Sounds made up? Well, thanks to a unique initiative launched by IIT Bombay, IIT lectures have now been made available at the click of a mouse -- and for free!


Anyone, anywhere in the world can visit the website www.cdeep.iitb.ac.in, check out the schedule and view any IIT lecture of their choice in real time.


Set up by the Centre for Distance Engineering Education Programme (CDEEP), the aim is to make knowledge available, says Rahul Deshmukh, who is spearheading the programme.

To find out just how the programme works and how students can sign up, Shifra Menezes caught up with Deshmukh at the Powai campus in Mumbai. Excerpts from the interview:

About the programme

Whatever courses are available at IIT Bombay, we make available to the distance education students.

The motivation behind this was the aspirant vs admittant ratio. There are so many aspirants who want to gain admission into the IIT but there are limited seats available. This facility allows anyone to gain the benefit of the knowledge base we have at the IIT.

Secondly, there is a very small difference between 99 per cent and 98.5 per cent but only the student with 99 per cent gets in to IIT. The gap is marginal and huge at the same time. We created this programme to helps this community that is unfortunately unable to enter the IIT, yet is seeking quality education.

The attempt is to make whatever information is available at IIT available outside the IIT. Our motto is very clear: we will make knowledge available.

I would like to mention that apart from the lectures and presentations that we make available to interested participants through the distance education programme, we DO NOT issue any diploma, degree or certificate. It is only the knowledge that is made available and not the IIT degree.

There are options whereby participants can get a grading certificate, however that is expensive and is only recommended for corporate participants. Students from various institutes, educationalists and corporate participants (Wipro [Get Quote], TechMahindra and other corporates have already signed up) all sign up for this programme. MNCs also enroll their employees.

How it began

The programme has been in operation for seven years now, but the previous initiatives were not as far-reaching. Before the videos, we were using satellite technology in our tie-up with ISRO. They provided the bandwidth free and we provided the content free, for the Edusat programme.

The Edusat centres are within various institutes, engineering colleges. So primarily, the service is aimed at their own students for whom it is free. There were six or seven remote centres where one could view the satellite transfers. This made growth and availability very limited.

For satellite telecasts you need a satellite receiving antenna, the student had to go to the institute or centre that was the satellite receiving centre, you were part of the group that attended. So it was a community learning type initiative. Now we have come up with a new idea, which is solo learning. So individuals with a laptop or PC, with an internet connection of 100 kbps can take the course. Previously it was space-dependent, time-dependent, community-dependent, now our new format is 'whenever, wherever, whoever'.

How it works

For the last six months, we have been using the facility of webcasts, which has made the reach global.

All the available courses are listed on the website, for each semester. Students can opt to view them via satellite, webcasts or through video on demand. Five halls are available live, the timetable is available too for each of the 50 courses that we offer. When you click on Hall 1, the course name, faculty name and the video will appear. This service is free of cost. There is no need to register.

While the lecture is taped in real time, we create a virtual classroom, basically to keep students engaged.

Now with webcasts, we have introduced the 'Video-on-demand service' as well, which makes the lecture available at any point of time, for a period of six months. The transmission is live and after the transmission, within one hour it is available on video on demand.

We also offer the value-add pack, which requires a student to register. It costs Rs 1,000 for a semester-long course. You will get video on demand and the learning management system (LMS). The video on demand facility gives you time flexibility that is not available in the free mode. In the free mode, you have to watch it live.

The LMS is a platform where you can interact with the faculty, post your questions and the faculty will reply, the faculty's pdf files and presentations may be also uploaded among other learning aids.

Interested candidates may register online using internet banking with Mastercard or SBI [Get Quote] credit cards.

The response so far

We only keep track of our registered users. Last semester we had five courses, and had about 700 students register per course. That was the pilot project, we didn't advertise very vigorously or promote it since it was a learning experience for us as well. But the success of the pilot has prompted us to go for 50 courses this semester. Now we are saying join us!

The target this year

We are hoping to get around 2,000-3,000 registrations per course. The only problem we can foresee is scalability. With so many visitors to the site, bandwidth will be a problem. So, we have now got an external service provider so that our server is not overloaded.

The team

We have about 50 people on the team -- cameramen, editors, post-production crew, administration and IIT students who are research associates.

Everything is in-house.

The knowledge advantage

Apart from the obvious advantage of making knowledge available to anyone, anywhere there are added benefits.

Generally, the faculty that is taking the class, just enters class and starts teaching. However, when the faculty delivers a course in CDEEP, a live course, he has to be more organised. He needs to be able to publish a schedule -- on which day what topic will be taught. The course is thus more organised. Issues are pinpointed and not as general as they could be -- the world is watching, so that is always a consideration.

The second advantage is to do with professors who are retiring. We are recording and archiving their knowledge and content, so even though legendary professors are moving on, the knowledge is not lost.

Beneficial things in daily life

Ants Problem:
Keep the skin of cucumbers near the place or ant hole.

To get pure and clean ice:
Boil water first before freezing.

To make the mirror shine:
Clean with spirit

To remove chewing gum from clothes:
Keep the cloth in the freezer for an hour.

To whiten white clothes:
Soak white clothes in hot water with a slice of lemon for 10 minutes 10.

To give a shine to hair:
Add one teaspoon of vinegar to hair, then wash hair.

To get maximum juice out of lemons:
Soak lemons in hot water for one hour, and then juice them.

To avoid smell of cabbage while cooking:
Keep a piece of bread on the cabbage in the vessel while cooking.

To rid the smell of fish from your hands:
Wash your hands with a little apple vinegar.

To avoid tears while cutting onions:
Chew gum.

To boil potatoes quickly:
Skin one potato from one side only before boiling.

To boil eggs quickly:
Add salt to the water and boil.

To check freshness of fish:
Put it in a bowl of cold water. If the fish floats, it's fresh.

To check freshness of eggs:
Put the egg in water. If it becomes horizontal, it's fresh. If it becomes slanting, its 3-4 days old. If it becomes vertical, its 10 days old. If it floats, it's stale.

To remove ink from clothes:
Put toothpaste on the ink spots generously and let it dry completely, then wash.

To skin sweet potatoes quickly:
Soak in cold water immediately after boiling.

To get rid of mice or rats:
Sprinkle black pepper in places where you find mice or rats. They will run away.

The Top 100 Things I'd Do If I Ever Become An Evil Overlord

1. My Legions of Terror will have helmets with clear Plexiglas visors, not face-concealing ones.

2. My ventilation ducts will be too small to crawl through.

3. My noble half-brother whose throne I usurped will be killed, not kept anonymously imprisoned in a forgotten cell of my dungeon.

4. Shooting is not too good for my enemies.

5. The artifact which is the source of my power will not be kept on the Mountain of Despair beyond the River of Fire guarded by the Dragons of Eternity. It will be in my safe-deposit box. The same applies to the object which is my one weakness.

6. I will not gloat over my enemies' predicament before killing them.

7. When I've captured my adversary and he says, "Look, before you kill me, will you at least tell me what this is all about?" I'll say, "No." and shoot him. No, on second thought I'll shoot him then say "No."

8. After I kidnap the beautiful princess, we will be married immediately in a quiet civil ceremony, not a lavish spectacle in three weeks' time during which the final phase of my plan will be carried out.

9. I will not include a self-destruct mechanism unless absolutely necessary. If it is necessary, it will not be a large red button labeled "Danger: Do Not Push". The big red button marked "Do Not Push" will instead trigger a spray of bullets on anyone stupid enough to disregard it. Similarly, the ON/OFF switch will not clearly be labeled as such.

10. I will not interrogate my enemies in the inner sanctum-a small hotel well outside my borders will work just as well.

11. I will be secure in my superiority. Therefore, I will feel no need to prove it by leaving clues in the form of riddles or leaving my weaker enemies alive to show they pose no threat.

12. One of my advisors will be an average five-year-old child. Any flaws in my plan that he is able to spot will be corrected before implementation.

13. All slain enemies will be cremated, or at least have several rounds of ammunition emptied into them, not left for dead at the bottom of the cliff. The announcement of their deaths, as well as any accompanying celebration, will be deferred until after the aforementioned disposal.

14. The hero is not entitled to a last kiss, a last cigarette, or any other form of last request.

15. I will never employ any device with a digital countdown. If I find that such a device is absolutely unavoidable, I will set it to activate when the counter reaches 117 and the hero is just putting his plan into operation.

16. I will never utter the sentence "But before I kill you, there's just one thing I want to know."

17. When I employ people as advisors, I will occasionally listen to their advice.

18. I will not have a son. Although his laughably under-planned attempt to usurp power would easily fail, it would provide a fatal distraction at a crucial point in time.

19. I will not have a daughter. She would be as beautiful as she was evil, but one look at the hero's rugged countenance and she'd betray her own father.

20. Despite its proven stress-relieving effect, I will not indulge in maniacal laughter. When so occupied, it's too easy to miss unexpected developments that a more attentive individual could adjust to accordingly.

21. I will hire a talented fashion designer to create original uniforms for my Legions of Terror, as opposed to some cheap knock-offs that make them look like Nazi storm troopers, Roman foot soldiers, or savage Mongol hordes. All were eventually defeated and I want my troops to have a more positive

mind-set.

22. No matter how tempted I am with the prospect of unlimited power, I will not consume any energy field bigger than my head.

23. I will keep a special cache of low-tech weapons and train my troops in their use. That way-even if the heroes manage to neutralize my power generator and/or render the standard-issue energy weapons useless my troops will not be overrun by a handful of savages armed with spears and rocks.

24. I will maintain a realistic assessment of my strengths and weaknesses. Even though this takes some of the fun out of the job, I will never utter the line "No, this cannot be! I AM INVINCIBLE!!!" (After that, death is usually instantaneous.)

25. No matter how well it would perform, I will never construct any sort of machinery which is completely indestructible except for one small and virtually inaccessible vulnerable spot.

26. No matter how attractive certain members of the rebellion are, there is probably someone just as attractive who is not desperate to kill me. Therefore, I will think twice before ordering a prisoner sent to my bedchamber.

27. I will never build only one of anything important. All important systems will have redundant control panels and power supplies. For the same reason I will always carry at least two fully loaded weapons at all times.

28. My pet monster will be kept in a secure cage from which it cannot escape and into which I could not accidentally stumble.

29. I will dress in bright and cheery colors, and so throw my enemies into confusion.

30. All bumbling conjurers, clumsy squires, no-talent bards, and cowardly thieves in the land will be pre-emptively put to death. My foes will surely give up and abandon their quest if they have no source of comic relief.

31. All naive, busty tavern wenches in my realm will be replaced with surly, world-weary waitresses who will provide no unexpected reinforcements and/or romantic subplot for the hero or his sidekick.

32. I will not fly into a rage and kill a messenger who brings me bad news just to illustrate how evil I really am. Good messengers are hard to come by.

33. I won't require high-ranking female members of my organization to wear a stainless-steel bustier. Morale is better with a more casual dress-code. Similarly, outfits made entirely from black leather will be reserved for formal occasions.

34. I will not turn into a snake. It never helps.

35. I will not grow a goatee. In the old days they made you look diabolic. Now they just make you look like a disaffected member of Generation X.

36. I will not imprison members of the same party in the same cell block, let alone the same cell. If they are important prisoners, I will keep the only key to the cell door on my person instead of handing out copies to every bottom-rung guard in the prison.

37. If my trusted lieutenant tells me my Legions of Terror are losing a battle, I will believe him. After all, he's my trusted lieutenant.

38. If an enemy I have just killed has a younger sibling or offspring anywhere, I will find them and have them killed immediately, instead of waiting for them to grow up harboring feelings of vengeance towards me in my old age.

39. If I absolutely must ride into battle, I will certainly not ride at the forefront of my Legions of Terror, nor will I seek out my opposite number among his army.

40. I will be neither chivalrous nor sporting. If I have an unstoppable super weapon, I will use it as early and as often as possible instead of keeping it in reserve.

41. Once my power is secure, I will destroy all those pesky time- travel devices.

42. When I capture the hero, I will make sure I also get his dog, monkey, ferret, or whatever sickeningly cute little animal capable of untying ropes and fetching keys happens to follow him around.

43. I will maintain a healthy amount of skepticism when I capture the beautiful rebel and she claims she is attracted to my power and good looks and will gladly betray her companions if I just let her in on my plans.

44. I will only employ bounty hunters who work for money. Those who work for the pleasure of the hunt tend to do dumb things like even the odds to give the other guy a sporting chance.

45. I will make sure I have a clear understanding of who is responsible for what in my organization. For example, if my general screws up I will not draw my weapon, point it at him, say "And here is the price for failure," then suddenly turn and kill some random underling.

46. If an advisor says to me "My liege, he is but one man. What can one man possibly do?", I will reply "This." and kill the advisor.

47. If I learn that a callow youth has begun a quest to destroy me, I will slay him while he is still a callow youth instead of waiting for him to mature.

48. I will treat any beast which I control through magic or technology with respect and kindness. Thus if the control is ever broken, it will not immediately come after me for revenge.

49. If I learn the whereabouts of the one artifact which can destroy me, I will not send all my troops out to seize it. Instead I will send them out to seize something else and quietly put a Want- Ad in the local paper.

50. My main computers will have their own special operating system that will be completely incompatible with standard IBM and Macintosh PowerBook's.

51. If one of my dungeon guards begins expressing concern over the conditions in the beautiful princess' cell, I will immediately transfer him to a less people-oriented position.

52. I will hire a team of board-certified architects and surveyors to examine my castle and inform me of any secret passages and abandoned tunnels that I might not know about.

53. If the beautiful princess that I capture says "I'll never marry you! Never, do you hear me, NEVER!!!", I will say "Oh well" and kill her.

54. I will not strike a bargain with a demonic being then attempt to double-cross it simply because I feel like being contrary.

55. The deformed mutants and odd-ball psychotics will have their place in my Legions of Terror. However before I send them out on important covert missions that require tact and subtlety, I will first see if there is anyone else equally qualified who would attract less attention.

56. My Legions of Terror will be trained in basic marksmanship. Any who cannot learn to hit a man-sized target at 10 meters will be used for target practice.

57. Before employing any captured artifacts or machinery, I will carefully read the owner's manual.

58. If it becomes necessary to escape, I will never stop to pose dramatically and toss off a one-liner.

59. I will never build a sentient computer smarter than I am.

60. My five-year-old child advisor will also be asked to decipher any code I am thinking of using. If he breaks the code in under 30 seconds, it will not be used. Note: this also applies to passwords.

61. If my advisors ask "Why are you risking everything on such a mad scheme?", I will not proceed until I have a response that satisfies them.

62. I will design fortress hallways with no alcoves or protruding structural supports which intruders could use for cover in a firefight.

63. Bulk trash will be disposed of in incinerators, not compactors. And they will be kept hot, with none of that nonsense about flames going through accessible tunnels at predictable intervals.

64. I will see a competent psychiatrist and get cured of all extremely unusual phobias and bizarre compulsive habits which could prove to be a disadvantage.

65. If I must have computer systems with publicly available terminals, the maps they display of my complex will have a room clearly marked as the Main Control Room. That room will be the Execution Chamber. The actual main control room will be marked as Sewage Overflow Containment.

66. My security keypad will actually be a fingerprint scanner. Anyone who watches someone press a sequence of buttons or dusts the pad for fingerprints then subsequently tries to enter by repeating that sequence will trigger the alarm system.

67. No matter how many shorts we have in the system, my guards will be instructed to treat every surveillance camera malfunction as a full-scale emergency.

68. I will spare someone who saved my life sometime in the past. This is only reasonable as it encourages others to do so. However, the offer is good one time only. If they want me to spare them again, they'd better save my life again.

69. All midwives will be banned from the realm. All babies will be delivered at state-approved hospitals. Orphans will be placed in foster-homes, not abandoned in the woods to be raised by creatures of the wild.

70. When my guards split up to search for intruders, they will always travel in groups of at least two. They will be trained so that if one of them disappears mysteriously while on patrol, the other will immediately initiate an alert and call for backup, instead of quizzically peering around a corner.

71. If I decide to test a lieutenant's loyalty and see if he/she should be made a trusted lieutenant, I will have a crack squad of marksmen standing by in case the answer is no.

72. If all the heroes are standing together around a strange device and begin to taunt me, I will pull out a conventional weapon instead of using my unstoppable super weapon on them.

73. I will not agree to let the heroes go free if they win a rigged contest, even though my advisors assure me it is impossible for them to win.

74. When I create a multimedia presentation of my plan designed so that my five-year-old advisor can easily understand the details, I will not label the disk "Project Overlord" and leave it lying on top of my desk.

75. I will instruct my Legions of Terror to attack the hero en masse, instead of standing around waiting while members break off and attack one or two at a time.

76. If the hero runs up to my roof, I will not run up after him and struggle with him in an attempt to push him over the edge. I will also not engage him at the edge of a cliff. (In the middle of a rope- bridge over a river of molten lava is not even worth considering.)

77. If I have a fit of temporary insanity and decide to give the hero the chance to reject a job as my trusted lieutenant, I will retain enough sanity to wait until my current trusted lieutenant is out of earshot before making the offer.

78. I will not tell my Legions of Terror "And he must be taken alive!" The command will be "And try to take him alive if it is reasonably practical."

79. If my doomsday device happens to come with a reverse switch, as soon as it has been employed it will be melted down and made into limited-edition commemorative coins.

80. If my weakest troops fail to eliminate a hero, I will send out my best troops instead of wasting time with progressively stronger ones as he gets closer and closer to my fortress.

81. If I am fighting with the hero atop a moving platform such as a train, have disarmed him, and am about to finish him off and he glances behind me and drops flat, I too will drop flat instead of quizzically turning around to find out what he saw.

82. I will not shoot at any of my enemies if they are standing in front of the crucial support beam to a heavy, dangerous, unbalanced structure.

83. If I'm eating dinner with the hero, put poison in his goblet, then have to leave the table for any reason, I will order new drinks for both of us instead of trying to decide whether or not to switch with him.

84. I will not have captives of one sex guarded by members of the opposite sex.

85. I will not use any plan in which the final step is horribly complicated, e.g. "Align the 12 Stones of Power on the sacred altar then activate the medallion at the moment of total eclipse." Instead it will be more along the lines of "Push the button."

86. I will make sure that my doomsday device is up to code and properly grounded.

87. My vats of hazardous chemicals will be covered when not in use. Also, I will not construct walkways above them.

88. If a group of henchmen fail miserably at a task, I will not berate them for incompetence then send the same group out to try the task again.

89. After I captures the hero's super weapon, I will not immediately disband my legions and relax my guard because I believe whoever holds the weapon is unstoppable. After all, the hero held the weapon and I took it from him.

90. I will not design my Main Control Room so that every workstation is facing away from the door.

91. I will not ignore the messenger that stumbles in exhausted and obviously agitated until my personal grooming or current entertainment is finished. It might actually be important.

92. If I ever talk to the hero on the phone, I will not taunt him. Instead I will say this his dogged perseverance has given me new insight on the futility of my evil ways and that if he leaves me alone for a few months of quiet contemplation I will likely return to the path of righteousness (Heroes are incredibly gullible in this regard.)

93. If I decide to hold a double execution of the hero and an underling who failed or betrayed me, I will see to it that the hero is scheduled to go first.

94. When arresting prisoners, my guards will not allow them to stop and grab a useless trinket of purely sentimental value.

95. My dungeon will have its own qualified medical staff complete with bodyguards. That way if a prisoner becomes sick and his cellmate tells the guard it's an emergency, the guard will fetch a trauma team instead of opening up the cell for a look.

96. My door mechanisms will be designed so that blasting the control panel on the outside seals the door and blasting the control panel on the inside opens the door, not vice versa.

97. My dungeon cells will not be furnished with objects that contain reflective surfaces or anything that can be unraveled.

98. If an attractive young couple enters my realm, I will carefully monitor their activities. If I find they are happy and affectionate, I will ignore them. However if circumstance have forced them together against their will and they spend all their time bickering and criticizing each other except during the intermittent occasions when they are saving each others' lives at which point there are hints of sexual tension, I will immediately order their execution.

99. Any data file of crucial importance will be padded to 1.45Mb in size.

100. Finally, to keep my subjects permanently locked in a mindless trance, I will provide each of them with free unlimited Internet access.

Upgrading GirlFriend

I'm currently running the latest version of GirlFriend and I've been having some problems lately. I've been running the same version of DrinkingBuddies 1.0 forever as my primary application, and all the GirlFriend releases I've tried have always conflicted with it.

I hear that DrinkingBuddies won't crash if GirlFriend is run in background mode and its sound is turned off. However, for the life of me I can't find the switch that turns the sound off. So, I just run them separately, and they work just fine. [GirlFriend also seems to have a problem co-existing with my Golf program, often trying to abort Golf with some sort of timing incompatibility].

I probably should have stayed with GirlFriend 1.0, but I thought I might see better performance from GirlFriend 2.0. After months of conflicts and other problems, I consulted a friend who has had experience with GirlFriend 2.0. He said I probably didn't have enough cache to run GirlFriend 2.0, and eventually it would require a Token Ring to run properly. He was right. As soon as I purged my cache, it uninstalled itself.

Shortly after that, I installed GirlFriend 3.0 beta. All the bugs were supposed to be gone, but the first time I used it, it gave me a virus anyway.

I had to clean out my whole system and shut down for while.I very cautiously upgraded to GirlFriend 4.0. This time I used a SCSI probe first and also installed a virus protection program. It worked okay for a while until I discovered that GirlFriend 1.0 was still in my system. I tried running GirlFriend 1.0 again with GirlFriend 4.0 still installed, but GirlFriend 4.0 has a feature I didn't know about that automatically senses the presence of any other version of GirlFriend and communicates with it in some way, which results in the immediate removal of both versions.

The version I have now works pretty well, but there are still some problems. Like all versions of GirlFriend, it is written in some obscure language I can't understand, much less reprogram. Frankly I think there is too much attention paid to the look and feel rather than the desired functionality.

Also, I've never liked how the GirlFriend Series is totally "object-oriented." A year ago, a friend of mine upgraded his version of GirlFriend to GirlFriendPlus 1.0, which is a Terminate and Stay Resident version of GirlFriend. He discovered that GirlFriendPlus 1.0 expires within a year if you don't upgrade to Fiancée 1.0. So he did, but soon after that, he had to upgrade to Wife 1.0, which he describes as a huge resource hog.It has taken up all his space, so he can't load anything else.

One of the primary reasons he decided to go with Wife 1.0 was because it came bundled with FreeSexPlus. Well, it turns out the resource allocation module of Wife 1.0 often prohibits access to FreeSexPlus, even with new Plug-Ins. On top of that, Wife 1.0 came with MotherInLaw 1.0, although he did not ask for it. This has an automatic pop-up feature he can't control, and it's impossible to modulate its sound.I suggested that he consider installing Mistress 1.0, but he said he heard if you try to run it without first uninstalling any of the Wife series, Wife will delete all MSMoney files and crash the system before uninstalling itself. With a purged cache, Mistress 1.0 will never install.

The moral of this story is: Know your system's hardware requirements, software peculiarities and limited range of compatibilities.and do be careful with those alluring upgrades.

What Movies Teach Us

During all police investigations it will be necessary to visit a strip club at least once.

All beds have special L-shaped cover sheets which reach up to the armpit level on a woman but only to waist level on the man lying beside her.

All grocery shopping bags contain at least one loaf of French Bread.

It's easy for anyone to land a plane, providing there is someone in the control tower to talk you down.

Once applied, lipstick will never rub off - even while scuba diving.

The ventilation system of any building is the perfect hiding place. No-one will ever think of looking for you in there and you can travel to any other part of the building you want without difficulty.

If you need to reload your gun, you will always have more ammunition - even if you haven't been carrying any before now.

You're very likely to survive any battle in any war - unless you make the mistake of showing someone a picture of your sweetheart back home.

Should you wish to pass yourself off as a German officer, it will not be necessary to speak the language. A German accent will do.

If your town is threatened by an imminent natural disaster or killer beast, the mayor's first concern will be the tourist trade or his forthcoming art exhibition.

The Eiffel Tower can be seen from any window in Paris.

A man will show no pain while taking the most ferocious beating but will wince when a woman tries to clean his wounds.

All telephone numbers in America begin with the digits 555.

If being chased through town, you can usually take cover in a passing St. Patrick's Day parade - at any time of the year.

When paying for a taxi, don't look at your wallet as you take out a bill - just grab one at random and hand it over. It will always be the exact fare.

Interbreeding is genetically possible with any creature from elsewhere in the universe.

Kitchens don't have light switches. When entering a kitchen at night, you should open the fridge door and use that light instead.

If staying in a haunted house, women should investigate any strange noises in their most revealing underwear.

Word processors never display a cursor on screen but will always say: Enter Password Now.

Mothers routinely cook eggs, bacon and waffles for their family every morning even though their husband and children never have time to eat them.

Cars that crash will almost always burst into flames.

The Chief of Police will always suspend his star detective - or give him 48 hours to finish the job.

A single match will be sufficient to light up a room the size of Wembley Stadium.

Medieval peasants had perfect teeth.

Although in the 20th century it is possible to fire weapons at an object out of our visual range, people of the 23rd century will have lost this technology.

Any person waking from a nightmare will sit bolt upright and pant.

It is not necessary to say hello or goodbye when beginning or ending phone conversations.

Even when driving down a perfectly straight road it is necessary to turn the steering wheel vigorously from left to right every few moments.

All bombs are fitted with electronic timing devices with large red readouts so you know exactly when they're going to go off.

It is always possible to park directly outside the building you are visiting.

A detective can only solve a case once he has been suspended from duty.

If you decide to start dancing in the street, everyone you bump into will know all the steps.

Most laptop computers are powerful enough to override the communication systems of any invading alien civilization.

It does not matter if you are heavily outnumbered in a fight involving martial arts - your enemies will wait patiently to attack you one by one by dancing around in a threatening manner until you have knocked out their predecessors.

When a person is knocked unconscious by a blow to the head, they will never suffer a concussion or brain damage.

No-one involved in a car chase, hijacking, explosion, volcanic eruption or alien invasion will ever go into shock.

Police Departments give their officers personality tests to make sure they are deliberately assigned a partner who is their total opposite.

When they are alone, all foreigners prefer to speak English to each other.

You can always find a chainsaw when you need one.

Any lock can be picked by a credit card or a paper clip in seconds - unless it's the door to a burning building with a child trapped inside.

An electric fence powerful enough to kill a dinosaur will cause no lasting damage to an eight year old child.

Television news bulletins usually contain a story that affects you personally at that precise moment.

Male human beings almost never undress to have sex, or if they finally do it, they are samples of the species with no visible genitals.

here is more...

# When they are alone, all foreigners prefer to speak English to each other.

# If being chased through town, you can usually take cover in a passing St. Patrick's Day parade - at any time of year.

# All beds have special L-shaped cover sheets which reach up to the armpit level on a woman but only to the waist level on the man lying beside her.

# The Chief of Police will almost always suspend his star detective - or give him 48 hours to finish the job.

# All grocery bags contain at least one stick of French Bread.

# It's easy for anyone to land a plane providing there is someone to talk you down.

# The ventilation system of any building is the perfect hiding place - noone will ever think of looking for you in there and you can travel to any other part of the building undetected.

# Police departments give their officers personality tests to make sure they are deliberately assigned to a partner who is their polar opposite.

# The Eiffel Tower can be seen from any window in Paris.

# All bombs are fitted with electronic timing devices with large red readouts so you know exactly when they are going to go off.

# If you need to reload your gun, you will always have more ammunition, even if you haven't been carrying any before now.

# You are very likely to survive any battle in any war unless you make the mistake of showing someone a picture of your sweetheart back home.

# Should you wish to pass yourself off as a German officer, it will not be necessary to speak the language - a German accent will do.

# If your town is threatened by an imminent natural disaster or killer beast, the mayor's first concern will be the tourist trade or his forthcoming art exhibition.

# A man will show no pain while taking the most ferocious beating but will wince when a woman tries to clean his wounds.

# When paying for a taxi, don't look at your wallet as you take out a bill - just grab one at random and hand it over. It will always be the exact fare.

# Kitchens don't have light switches. When entering a kitchen at night, you should open the fridge door and use that light instead.

# If staying in a haunted house, women should investigate any strange noises in their most revealing underwear.

# Mothers routinely cook eggs, bacon and waffles for their family every morning even though their husband and children never have time to eat it.

# Cars that crash will almost always burst into flames.

# All telephone numbers in America begin with the digits 555.

# A single match will be sufficient to light up a room the size of RFK stadium.

# Medieval peasants had perfect teeth.

# Any person waking from a nightmare will sit bolt upright and pant.

# It is not necessary to hello or goodbye when beginning or ending phone conversations.

# Even when driving down a perfectly straight road, it is necessary to turn the wheel vigorously from left to right every few moments.

# It is always possible to park directly outside the building you are visiting.

# A detective can only solve a case once he has been suspended from duty.

# It does not matter if you are heavily outnumbered in a fight involving martial arts - your enemies will patiently attack you one by one by dancing around in a threatening manner until you have knocked out their predecessors.

# When a person is knocked unconscious by a blow to the head, they will never suffer a concussion or brain damage.

# No-one ever involved in a car chase, hijacking, explosion, volcanic eruption or alien invasion will ever go into shock.

# Once applied, lipstick will never rub off - even while scuba diving.

# You can always find a chainsaw when you need one.

# Any lock can be picked by a credit card or a paper clip in seconds - unless it's the door to a burning building with a child trapped inside.

# Television news bulletins usually contain a story that affects you personally at the precise moment that it is aired.

YOUR DAILY MOMENT OF ZEN

1. Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me, for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me, either. JUST LEAVE ME ALONE.

2. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a broken fan belt and a leaky tire.

3. It's always darkest before dawn. So if you're going to steal your neighbour's newspaper, that's the time to do it.

4. Sex is like air. It's not important unless you aren't getting any.

5. Don't be irreplaceable. If you can't be replaced, you can't be promoted.

6. No one is listening until you fart.

7. Always remember you're unique. Just like everyone else.

8. Never test the depth of the water with both feet.

9. It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.

10. It is far more impressive when others discover your good qualities without your help.

11. If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments.

12. Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes.

That way, when you criticize them, you're a mile away and you have their shoes.

13. If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.

14. Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat & drink beer all day.

15. If you lend someone $20, and never see that person again, it was probably worth it.

16. Don't squat with your spurs on.

17. If you tell the truth, you don't have to remember anything.

18. If you drink, don't park; accidents cause people.

19. Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield.

20. Don't worry, it only seems kinky the first time.

21. Good judgment comes from bad experience, and a lot of that comes of bad judgment.

22. The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it back in your pocket.

23. Timing has an awful lot to do with the outcome of a rain dance.

24. A closed mouth gathers no foot.

25. Duct tape is like the force. It has a light side & a dark side, and it holds the universe together.

26. There are two theories to arguing with women. Neither one works.

27. Generally speaking, you aren't learning much when your mouth is moving.

28. Experience is something you don't get until just after you need it.

29. Never miss a good chance to shut up.

30. We are born naked, wet, and hungry. Then things get worse..

The World at Night.

Weird Sex Laws

No man is allowed to make love to his wife with the smell of garlic, onions, or sardines on his breath in Alexandria, Minnesota. If his wife so requests, law mandates that he must brush his teeth.

Warn your hubby that after lovemaking in Ames, Iowa, he isn't allowed to take more than three gulps of beer while lying in bed with you-or holding you in his arms.

Bozeman, Montana, has a law that bans all sexual activity between members of the opposite sex in the front yard of a home after sundown-if they're nude. (Apparently, if you wear socks, you're safe from the law!)

During lunch breaks in Carlsbad, New Mexico no couple should engage in a sexual act while parked in their vehicle, unless their car has curtains.

In Cleveland, Ohio women are not allowed to wear patent-leather shoes.

Clinton, Oklahoma has a law against masturbating while watching two people having sex in a car.

It's safe to make love while parked in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. Police officers aren't allowed to walk up and knock on the window. Any suspicious officer who thinks that sex is taking place must drive up from behind, honk his horn three times and wait approximately two minutes before getting out of his car to investigate. [Hmmm... okay, there's one place with a law that makes sense... -psl]

In Connorsville, Wisconsin no man shall shoot off a gun while his female partner is having a sexual orgasm.

In Detroit, couples are not allowed to make love in an automobile unless the act takes place while the vehicle is parked on the couple's own property.

A law in Fairbanks, Alaska does not allow moose to have sex on city streets.

In Florida it is illegal for single, divorced, or widowed women to parachute on Sunday afternoons.

In Harrisburg, Pennsylvania it is illegal to have sex with a truck driver inside a toll booth.

The owner of every hotel in Hastings, Nebraska, is required to provide each guest with a clean and pressed nightshirt. No couple, even if they are married, may sleep together in the nude. Nor may they have sex unless they are wearing one of these clean, white cotton nightshirts.

Another law in Helena, Montana, mandates that a woman can't dance on a table in a saloon or bar unless she has on at least three pounds, two ounces of clothing.

A state law in Illinois mandates that all bachelors should be called master, not mister, when addressed by their female counterparts.

An excerpt from brilliant Kentucky state legislation. "No female shall appear in a bathing suit on any highway within this state unless she be escorted by at least two officers or unless she be armed with a club".

The following important amendment however is to be considered here: "The provisions of this statute shall not apply to females weighing less than 90 pounds nor exceeding 200 pounds, nor shall it apply to male horses."

In Kingsville, Texas there is a law against two pigs having sex on the city's airport property.

Any couple making out inside a vehicle, and accidentally sounding the horn during their lustful act, may be taken to jail according to a Liberty Corner, New Jersey law.

In Los Angeles, California, a man is legally entitled to beat his wife with a leather belt or strap, but the belt can't be wider than 2 inches, unless he has his wife's consent to beat her with a wider strap. Consent should be given prior to the event, as is carefully stipulated. [Not to be confused with the myth about "rule of thumb"'s origin -psl]

In Maryville, Missouri, women are prohibited from wearing corsets because "The privilege of admiring the curvaceous, unencumbered body of a young woman should not be denied to the normal, red-blooded American male."

In Michigan, a woman isn't allowed to cut her own hair without her husband's permission.

In Nevada sex without a condom is considered illegal.

An ordinance in Newcastle, Wyoming, specifically bans couples from having sex while standing inside a store's walk-in meat freezer!

In Norfolk, Virginia, a woman can't go out without wearing a corset. (There was a civil-service job-for men only-called a corset inspector.)

In Oblong, Illinois, it's punishable by law to make love while hunting or fishing on your wedding day.

In Oxford, Ohio, it's illegal for a woman to strip off her clothing while standing in front of a man's picture.

In hotels in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, every room is required to have twin beds. And the beds must always be a minimum of two feet apart when a couple rents a room for only one night. And it's illegal to make love on the floor between the beds!

A Tremonton, Utah law states that no woman is allowed to have sex with a man while riding in an ambulance. In addition to normal charges, the woman's name will be published in the local newspaper. The man does not receive any punishment.

Utah state legislation outlaws all sex with anyone but your spouse. Next to that adultery, oral and anal sex, masturbation are considered sodomy and can lead to imprisonment. Sex with an animal - unless performed for profit - however is NOT considered sodomy. Polygamy - provided only the missionary position has been applied - is only a misdemeanor.

(The following was received from Patrick Clark unterhund@mailcity.com
a resident of Utah: "Unfortunately, your page on weird USA sex laws ( http://www.bertc.com/sexlaws.htm ) has some errors. Utah law does not consider masturbation to be sodomy. Specifically, Utah Code section 76-5-403 ( http://www.le.state.ut.us/~code/TITLE76/htm/76_05048.htm ) defines sodomy to include the mouth or anus of one person, and the genitals of another. Near as I can tell by reading the law, both are guilty of the misdemeanor, unless it's without consent. Then it's a felony for the aggressor. I can't find anything making private masturbation illegal. In public, on the other hand . . .

Also, "polygamy" is actually "bigamy" in Utah law (section 76-7-101 at http://www.le.state.ut.us/~code/TITLE76/htm/76_09002.htm), and it's a felony. Of course, adultery and fornication are both illegal, but there's no mention of position in the Utah Code anywhere.

Finally, regarding sex with animals, it's not "sodomy," true. It's "bestiality," which is a misdemeanor (section 76-9-301.8 at http://www.le.state.ut.us/~code/TITLE76/htm/76_0B015.htm). If done for pay--in fact, if any of the legal or illegal things listed above (aside from bigamy) are done in public--it's lewdness or sexual battery, depending on how willing any other person involved might be (section 76-9-70 at http://www.le.state.ut.us/~code/TITLE76/htm/76_0B037.htm).

Yes, it's anal of me to call this to your attention. I'm a picky sort, especially when my state's already, um, interesting reputation is unfairly attacked.')

In Ventura County, California cats and dogs are not allowed to have sex without a permit.

The only acceptable sexual position in Washington D.C. is the missionary-style position. Any other sexual position is considered illegal.

In Willowdale, Oregon no man may curse while having sex with his wife.

In the state of Washington there is a law against having sex with a virgin under any circumstances. (Including the wedding night).

---anon---

And in a similar manner:

In Lebanon, men are legally allowed to have sex with animals, but the animals must be female. Having sexual relations with a male animal is punishable by death. (Like THAT makes sense.)

In Bahrain, a male doctor may legally examine a woman's genitals, but is prohibited from looking directly at them during theexamination. He may only see their reflection in a mirror.

Muslims are banned from looking at the genitals of a corpse. This also applies to undertakers; the sex organs of the deceased must be covered with a brick or piece of wood at all times.

The penalty for masturbation in Indonesia is decapitation.

In Hong Kong, a betrayed wife is legally allowed to kill her adulterous husband, but may only do so with her bare hands.!! The husband's lover, on the other hand, may be killed in any manner desired. (Ah! Justice!)

Topless saleswomen are legal in Liverpool, England - but only in tropical fish stores. (But of course!)

In Cali, Colombia, a woman may only have sex with her husband, and the first time this happens, her mother must be in the room to witness the act. (Makes one shudder at the thought.)

In Santa Cruz, Bolivia, it is illegal for a man to have sex with a woman and her daughter at the same time. (I presume this was a big enough Problem that they had to pass this law?)

In Maryland, it is illegal to sell condoms from vending machines with one exception: prophylactics may be dispensed from a vending machine only "in places where alcoholic beverages are sold for consumption on the premises."