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From: S.Shankar <>

Subject: Sundar

Date: 24 Aug 1999 03:12:09 -0500


Hello,
Super railnut Sundar is back! What a relief!!
This is an excerpt of a note I sent to him off list yesterday:

(Quote)
Hello, and welcome, welcome, welcome!
Your departure was a great loss to the irfca. I am relieved to note that
you are back. (break ke baad, a la zee tv).
Congrats on your new job and all.
(unquote)

Cheers.

Shankar

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: My vote for knowing whos-who

Date: 24 Aug 1999 04:03:58 -0500


> But the problem of
> wife feeling neglects because the hubby is missing (or vice
> versa in case of lady railfans) is a very real
> one and the royal game has lost many a stalwarts due to
> domestic pressures
> (like Manish Karnik ?).

For those who do not know Manish, for him Mumbai Pune travel
is done
like MCT - Surat - Udhna - Nandurbar - Jalgaon - Bhusawal -
Manmad -
Daund - Pune, all unreserved and all decision spontaneous.
Joys of
freewheeling bachelorhood.

Apurva

From: raymond/Polaris <>

Subject: Re: Up and Down again

Date: 24 Aug 1999 04:47:47 -0500


Dear Shirish & gang,

The normal exceptions are west to south, and south to east trains, if
you
take this funda of which zone's rake it is.

6045 Navajeevan Exp comes into Chennai, while 6046 goes to ADI.

6003 Chennai Mail leaves HWH, while 6004 leaves MAS for HWH.

Similarly the various CSTM/DR - MAS trains.

I think it has to do with tradition more than any great logic.

For example. TN / GT are 2615 / 2621 leaving MAS because they are SR
rakes.
However, Rajdhani 2433 leaves MAS although it is an NR rake. So also
2759
Charminar leaving MAS - SCR rake.

On the same line 2842 Coromandel leaves MAS being a SER rake, but 6004
Mail
also leaves MAS though it is an SR rake.

Regards

Raymond

P.S. ; Maybe we should all just give up trying to find some logic in the
whole numbering scheme.

From: Don Mills <>

Subject: Re: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....

Date: 24 Aug 1999 05:21:59 -0500


I guraentee that the Indian Rail mails are read with great interest on
this
end. I have never been in India but should I be graced with the funds,
I
know who to contact and where I want to go. Apurva is a fantastic
internet
leader. He has always been patient with me and put up with my stupid
questions. Many others have also helped with my queries. Sometimes I
use
their information in my chapter's newsletter. They are my key to the
outside world so to speak. Don in West Virginia-USA
-----Original Message-----
From: Anand Krishnan <krish_nand@hotmail.email
To: samr@vsnl.email <samr@vsnl.email
Cc: irfca@cs.email <irfca@cs.email
Date: Monday, August 23, 1999 11:17 PM
Subject: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....


>Hi Samit,
> I do understand that it is better and safer to maintain some
bit of
>privacy especially when dealing with a big group like this. I was a
little
>complacent on the fact that we have only 20-25 active members at any
given
>point of time. Though on paper our count would have been 100 most of
>them[other than the active members] hesitate to contribute. I wonder if
the
>mails are even read. How good will it be if there is a lot of
contribution.
>Thats where i guess an intro would have helped but not guaranteed.
>
>Shankar,
> Your point well taken.
>
>Kind regards,
>Anand
>
>
>______________________________________________________
>Get Your Private, Free Email at <A HREF="http://www.hotmail.com">http://www.hotmail.com</A>

From: ranand <>

Subject: Wives andt rains

Date: 24 Aug 1999 05:29:30 -0500


For the most part, I have an understanding wife who lets me do
what I want with respect to railfanning and model trains. A few years
ago
the situation was briefly reversed !

We had gone to the National Railway Museum in York in England. This is
truly one of the most amazing railway museums in the world. We spent the
whole day at the museum and even my wife became absorbed in the
exhibits. At the end of the day I had to ask the museum supervisor to
page
her over the public address system! He said that this was the first time
that
he could ever remember that a husband had to page a wife!

I have been trying to get my 2 year old daughter started on trains with
only modest success so far. I will be taking her to a model train
exhibition this weekend :-)

Anand

Internet: anand@watson.email
External tel: (914) 784 7054
Notes: Rangachari Anand/Watson/IBM@IBMUS
Tie-line: 863 7054

From: Anand Krishnan <>

Subject: Re: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....

Date: 24 Aug 1999 06:04:22 -0500


Hi Sarosh,

>I would safely presume that ALL mails are read by ALMOST ALL the
>members. The hitch lies where maybe too much technical aspects are
>discussed.
No harm intended, I was referring to those who stumble upon
this
site and get registered to see what this group is all about. This is
just
out of curiosity. Maybe the topics become a little too tech oriented
that
they do not appeal. Its that kind of example that i wanted to put forth.
If
u remember when there was a discussion on having a password protection
for
our site for those who just stumble upon, these were indeed discussed.
One other major drawback could be accessing the net frequently. U can't
help
that sometimes. We just had a re-incarnation of Sunder today. Thank god
for
that.

>Quite a few members, like myself, could only read the
>matter without understanding it.
No probelm Sire, u have company ! Once words like inverter,
compressor, cooler, radiator come into picture its all bouncers for me
too.
I guess i attend a training camp with the likes of Joydeep, Shubranshu
and
other technocrats. Amazing how much knowlege one can accquire.

Kind regards,
Anand


______________________________________________________
Get Your Private, Free Email at <A HREF="http://www.hotmail.com">http://www.hotmail.com</A>

From: Samit Roychoudhury <>

Subject: Fw: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....

Date: 24 Aug 1999 06:42:54 -0500


i guess you are right anand.

come to think of it if everybody started writing i would be dead...
trying
to sort through so much mail :)

jokes apart, as i had also suggested every member is at his discretion
whether he wants to fill in info... and what info he wants. lets all
work
out a format which we can pass on.

samit


----- Original Message -----
From: Anand Krishnan <krish_nand@hotmail.email
To: <samr@vsnl.email
Cc: <irfca@cs.email
Sent: Tuesday, August 24, 1999 14:12
Subject: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....


> Hi Samit,
> I do understand that it is better and safer to maintain some
bit
of
> privacy especially when dealing with a big group like this. I was a
little
> complacent on the fact that we have only 20-25 active members at any
given
> point of time. Though on paper our count would have been 100 most of
> them[other than the active members] hesitate to contribute. I wonder
if
the
> mails are even read. How good will it be if there is a lot of
contribution.
> Thats where i guess an intro would have helped but not guaranteed.
>
> Shankar,
> Your point well taken.
>
> Kind regards,
> Anand
>
>
> ______________________________________________________
> Get Your Private, Free Email at <A HREF="http://www.hotmail.com">http://www.hotmail.com</A>
>

From: Samit Roychoudhury <>

Subject: Re: My vote for knowing whos-who

Date: 24 Aug 1999 06:58:47 -0500


well i have a female friend who loves trains and i told her to join...
but
then they can be lazy too.

From: Samit Roychoudhury <>

Subject: Fw: Please Avoid this type of Team Work :- .. nice one

Date: 24 Aug 1999 07:18:10 -0500


thought you people would like this one.

From: shankar s. <>

Subject: Hill Railways of India

Date: 24 Aug 1999 07:21:48 -0500


Hello,
Something I came across while browsing.
Enjoy!!

Cheers

Shankar


<A HREF="http://mikes.railhistory.railfan.net/r019.html">http://mikes.railhistory.railfan.net/r019.html</A>

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Up and Down again

Date: 24 Aug 1999 07:57:10 -0500


> For example. TN / GT are 2615 / 2621 leaving MAS because they are SR
rakes.
> However, Rajdhani 2433 leaves MAS although it is an NR rake. So also
2759
> Charminar leaving MAS - SCR rake.
>
> On the same line 2842 Coromandel leaves MAS being a SER rake, but 6004
Mail
> also leaves MAS though it is an SR rake.

This argument is not clear to me at all. The The 3 series (ER) trains
seem to follow
reversed numbering system. The 3 series trains out of Mumbai are even
numbered
(3004/3448) while the rest of the trains from all the other divisions
are all odd
numbered. The point about the various division of the rakes is not
clear. Please
explain.

Apurva

From: Suresh Mutuswami <>

Subject: How is the "shortest path" calculated?

Date: 24 Aug 1999 08:15:13 -0500


One of the concerns peculiar to Indian Railways (and also the Indian
Government) is the concern with the "shortest path." As anyone who's
ever
attended an interview (job or otherwise) with a government organization
will testify, the request to appear for an interview will typically
state
something like "travel expenses for the shortest distance between your
home town and <place of interview> will be reimbursed." The question,
of
course, is: how is this distance computed? In many cases, this question
is not difficult to answer. In other cases, it is not simple. Let me
illustrate with an anecdote concerning my father:

A couple of years, I was going through Bill Aitken's "Exploring Indian
Railways." One of the fascinating accounts in that book is the travel
by
the narrow gauge 1 Satpura Express from Chanda Fort to Jabalpur. Since
my
father was stationed in Jabalpur in the late fifties (he was in the
Telecommunications service, and the Telecommunication Training Centre
was
located there), I asked him whether he had ever travelled by the 1
Satpura
Express. Somewhat to my surprise, he said that he had, and proceed to
explain:

In the fifties, the Government rules stated that in order to get
compensation for travel, you had to not only perform the journey
(documentation required) but you had to do so by the shortest path.
Apparently, some bureaucrat (according to my father, "probably a south
indian brahmin") had determined that the shortest path from Madras to
Jabalpur was Madras-Nagpur-Gondia-Jabalpur and it involved catching the
1
Satpura Express at Gondia. My father told me that the 1
Satpura Express would typically come crowded into Gondia with all doors
and windows locked in the middle of the night. A furious banging would
result, and sure enough, some "idiot" in the train would partially open
his window to see what the commotion was all about. This was what the
passengers at Gondia were waiting for: the moment a window was partially
open, they would immediately put their hand in and open the window
completely. They would then physically haul themselves into the train
via
the open window. (I guess there were no bars then!) It was also well
understood that once you did get into the train, then you became an
"insider" and it was your duty to make sure that others did not enter
the
train.

On hearing this story, I was struck by the fact that the 1 Satpura
Express
starts from Chanda Fort, and any Madras-Delhi train would have stopped
at
Chandrapur (this was the late fifties). So, someone must have computed
that Madras-Chanda Fort-Jabalpur was NOT the shortest path. Of course,
the most "sensible" way of getting to Jabalpur would probably have been

Madras-Itarsi-Jabalpur.

The point here is that mathematically speaking, the computation of the
shortest path is hardly trivial -- especially given the somewhat
intricate rail network that we possess. The "hard" way of doing this, I
suppose, is to enumerate ALL possible ways of getting from point A to
point B (this is bound to be very difficult on account of the number of
diffrent combinations) and then see which of these
gives you the shortest distance. Is there any "smart" algorithm
available
which can be used to compute the shortest path between two points in a
given network? (Most of us use some version of a "smart algorithm."
For instance, in computing the shortest distance between Delhi and
Madras, we are not going to consider paths which take us through
Mumbai, even though there is a path from Delhi to Madras via Mumbai.)
Does anyone how the "shortest path" is determined in practice in IR?

Sometime back, I read an article (by J.V. Narlikar?) about teaching
practices in India. As usual, he condemned the unimaginative teaching
which goes on in our schools with it's emphasis on rote. As an example
of
"imaginative teaching" he suggested that students be given a copy of the
Railway Time Table and asked to find the shortest path between two given
points. One can only hope that this will be put into practice...


Suresh

From: Anurag Acharya <>

Subject: [IRFCA

Date: 24 Aug 1999 10:06:56 -0500



>well i have a female friend who loves trains and i told her to join...
but
>then they can be lazy too.

I request folks to avoid casual references like the above. We have
barely gotten over the regional references round.... Offence may not
be intended (and is usually not) but the "by-the-way" nature of the
references can often be offensive. IRFCA has maintained a high
signal-to-noise ratio for very long time. But recently I have noticed
a worrisome trend: "reservation is/is not the cause of all evil",
"bengalis are/are not ____", and now this. Please keep the *good*
stuff coming.

anurag

From: Larry Russell <>

Subject: Re: APURVA

Date: 24 Aug 1999 10:16:07 -0500


Yes, there are a few in the US & Canada (VERY FEW). I've met a couple on
hard core excursions.
Larry

Jayant S wrote:

> Apurva Bahadur wrote:
>
> > I would compose my thought soon on railfanning and matrimony,
> > or how to prepare
> > your future wife as to who you really are. But the problem of
> > wife feeling neglects because the hubby is missing (or vice
> > versa in case of lady railfans)
>
> Aha: does the lady railfan actually exist ? :)
> --
> JS
> --

From: S.Shankar <>

Subject: Re: My vote for knowing whos-who

Date: 24 Aug 1999 10:17:26 -0500


Hello Anita,
Your reaction to Samit's remark indicates that you read irfca mails
too.
Well, what do you know! We do have a lady enthusiast in our midst after
all!
Thank you Anita, you've made my day!
Cheers.
Shankar

PS: Your differences with Samit are a different issue altogether!




Tim & Anita Wakeman wrote:
>
> Samit Roychoudhury wrote:
> >
> > well i have a female friend who loves trains and i told her to
join... but
> > then they can be lazy too.
>
> Samit,
> I resent the last comment.
>
> Anita

From: S.Shankar <>

Subject: Hill Railways of India

Date: 24 Aug 1999 10:19:53 -0500


Hello,
I forwarded this from the office, but as the link is through the main
office server, it showed an error in transmission.

Just check out this url:

<A HREF="http://mikes.railhistory.railfan.net/r019.html">http://mikes.railhistory.railfan.net/r019.html</A>

My profound apologies if the thing had come in earlier after all and if
this is a duplication.

Cheers.

Shankar

From: S.Shankar <>

Subject: World-wide Railway links

Date: 24 Aug 1999 10:21:43 -0500


Hello,

My word, have you seen such a copious and extensive plethora of railway
links anywhere? There are links to some of our irfca member sites too.

<A HREF="http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Oracle/6255/">http://www.geocities.com/Athens/Oracle/6255/</A>

Enjoy!

Shankar

From: Vijay Balasubramanian <>

Subject: Re: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....

Date: 24 Aug 1999 10:22:08 -0500


Folks,

I think it's a good idea to share information about ourselves
(background, etc.)
but let's make it voluntary. As Shankar and others have pointed out, we
are
more like
a family with "noble" pursuits :-) It would be nice to know a little
bit
more about you
folks than just your names. In fact, when the club was restricted to
about
10 or so
members, we knew each other reasonably well, right Dheeraj?

So the question is how to share the information. We could make it
very
informal and write a
few lines about ourselves and mail it to Mr. Volunteer, who would
collect
this info. in a file.
Mr. V could then broadcast it across the network. Or we could formalize
it
by creating a format-of-sorts.
Personally, I would prefer the former. Of course, when the IRFCA site
is
up and running, there will be
a set of links to member pages - we could augment this with our
profiles.

Comments?

Vijay

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Samit Roychoudhury [SMTP:samr@vsnl.email
> Sent: Tuesday, August 24, 1999 9:43 AM
> To: IRFCA
> Subject: Fw: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....
>
> i guess you are right anand.
>
> come to think of it if everybody started writing i would be dead...
trying
> to sort through so much mail :)
>
> jokes apart, as i had also suggested every member is at his discretion
> whether he wants to fill in info... and what info he wants. lets all
work
> out a format which we can pass on.
>
> samit
>
>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Anand Krishnan <krish_nand@hotmail.email
> To: <samr@vsnl.email
> Cc: <irfca@cs.email
> Sent: Tuesday, August 24, 1999 14:12
> Subject: Privacy factor was RE: My vote.....
>
>
> > Hi Samit,
> > I do understand that it is better and safer to maintain some
bit
> of
> > privacy especially when dealing with a big group like this. I was a
> little
> > complacent on the fact that we have only 20-25 active members at any
> given
> > point of time. Though on paper our count would have been 100 most of
> > them[other than the active members] hesitate to contribute. I wonder
if
> the
> > mails are even read. How good will it be if there is a lot of
> contribution.
> > Thats where i guess an intro would have helped but not guaranteed.
> >
> > Shankar,
> > Your point well taken.
> >
> > Kind regards,
> > Anand
> >
> >
> > ______________________________________________________
> > Get Your Private, Free Email at <A HREF="http://www.hotmail.com">http://www.hotmail.com</A>
> >

From: Shanku Niyogi <>

Subject: Re: Roadrailer

Date: 24 Aug 1999 10:45:52 -0500


I think the combination of #1 and #2 (sharing tracks and giving higher
priority to passenger traffic) probably has a very big effect on
freight.
(And the reason for the latter probably being #4 below). It's probably
not
uncommon to see a goods train wait for hours when there's heavy or
backed up
passenger traffic on a two line section.

In the US, by contrasts, the rail system exists primarily for freight
traffic. Freight gets the highest speed lines (except in high-speed
passenger corridors), and usually gets priority over passenger traffic
in
shared areas. You'll see this a lot if you travel on the California
Zephyr
or similar trains.

-----Original Message-----
From: S Pai [mailto:s_pai@bigfoot.email
Sent: Monday, August 23, 1999 7:09 PM
To: Indian Railways List
Subject: Re: Roadrailer



[Why freight traffic seems slower than passenger traffic]

Some thoughts:

1. Same set of tracks used for both passenger and freight traffic (no
dedicated lines).
2. Passenger trains are naturally given a much higher priority.
3. Loading / unloading freight is more complex and time-consuming than
getting passengers on and off a train.
4. The freight constituency is not considered as politically important
as
the passenger constituency by politicians, naturally.
5. [speculation] Most goods trains, except regularly scheduled goods
"specials" are probably sent on an "as-needed" basis; i.e. they wait
till they have enough to put together a normal-sized rake for and
then
send it out, so some freight shipments might just have to wait for
some
time before the journey begins. (Someone more familiar with freight
operations can probably comment on whether this is close to the
truth.)

Are there any "goods expresses" that reach any significant speed (say
120km/h or more) anywhere on IR? I know there are some special services
that have some sort of guaranteed delivery time, but even those probably
aren't really handled at high speeds. (?) Note -- a loaded freight
train
will take far longer than a passenger train to halt in case of an
emergency; this might also limit the speed of freights on busy sections
(and it may be uneconomical to use shorter rakes to get around this).

--Satish

From: Shanku Niyogi <>

Subject: Re: potentially offensive references

Date: 24 Aug 1999 11:00:58 -0500


Thanks Anurag,

I would second that. As our list grows more diverse, it would be good
for
all of us to exercise caution in our remarks, and be sensitive to others
in
the group. This includes sexual or ethnic comments and jokes,
generalizations about one country or another, political commentary, etc.
For
example, I have to admit that I, too, was initially irked by Harsh's
post
about Bengalis, and posted a joking reply to that regard. And although I
took it in stride, I could certainly see that it, and postings like it,
might offend some people, while contributing little to the list.

We have done fairly well in this so far, but let's try to keep up the
standard.

Just my 2 cents/paisa/pence/peso worth.

Shanku

-----Original Message-----
From: Anurag Acharya [mailto:acha@cs.email
Sent: Tuesday, August 24, 1999 10:07 AM
To: irfca@cs.email
Subject: [IRFCA] please avoid potentially offensive references



>well i have a female friend who loves trains and i told her to join...
but
>then they can be lazy too.

I request folks to avoid casual references like the above. We have
barely gotten over the regional references round.... Offence may not
be intended (and is usually not) but the "by-the-way" nature of the
references can often be offensive. IRFCA has maintained a high
signal-to-noise ratio for very long time. But recently I have noticed
a worrisome trend: "reservation is/is not the cause of all evil",
"bengalis are/are not ____", and now this. Please keep the *good*
stuff coming.

anurag

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