Wednesday, 1 March 2017


We are pleased to inform you the release of BIOTA - The Biodiversity App. The application was developed at the C V Raman Laboratory of Ecological Informatics, Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management - Kerala (IIITM-K).

Although BIOTA is envisioned as a holistic biogeography App; the released version focus on invasive plant species. Foresters, ecologists and researchers will be able to use BIOTA to report presence of invasive species as they come across. They are only required to collect a photo of species observed using their smart phone. BIOTA will geo-flag the information on Google Map in real time. The data concurrently gets appended on to a dedicated database.

BIOTA can be downloaded from Google Play Store. The current version (1.0) will work on Android devices. It was developed and demonstrated as a part of National Biodiversity Conference 2017 in February 2017 at Trivandrum, India.

Widespread adoption of the App is expected to plug a big gap in species modeling and thereby aid biodiversity conservation. In subsequent releases we look forward to make BIOTA more intelligent and include more species.

Monday, 27 February 2017


Whilst it is easy to understand the role of flowers in seed propagated plants, can anyone please tell me the exact role of flowers in vegetatively propagated plants?

Put in other words, why does vegetatively propagating plant species invest much energy in blooming?

Tuesday, 14 February 2017


Very often we forget that our social evolution into what we term modern societies has its foundation rooted in the stable climatic regime that the Earth gifted us. The various political and legal instruments that are in place to ensure success of entities as nation states, have a climate defined limit (CDL). Since climate and ecosystem services were taken as granted, no constitution or regulation ever carried any explicit mention of CDLs.    

With our present understanding of climate change, the contours of possible CDLs have become more luminous. It is now more easy to visualize how the laws that govern our social behavior have a valid climate space

In other words, an individual's social behavior is likely to alter under a changed and unpredictable climatic regime. Sheer desire to ensure survival and transfer of genes will make biological evolutionary force to exert and compel individuals to disobey rule of law.

It may begin as seemingly disconnected instances of localized food/ water riots. However, such isolated instances have the potential to rapidly coalesce and scale up to cannibalism that epitomizes survival of the fittest.

Do we need to wait for the jerk to react? Would it be too late to continue to repose faith on our friends, who like us would likely be a cannibal by then? Perhaps Korowais may be able to teach us how to adapt to live in a changed planet! 

I doubt if it would be sheer muscle power than any institution. 

Monday, 23 January 2017


Newton's third law states that for every action in nature, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

A finer visualization of the statement - from a classical perspective - gives a feeling that there exists a time-gap between every action and reaction. It depends on the nature of action and can range from fraction of a second to years.

This was put up in my blog on 20 Jan 2017 as "it is impossible to squeeze time completely out between an action and its reaction" - The Time Gap Hypothesis. 

Consider the case of a spring glove that is about to be boxed. It is possible to alter the reaction of the spring glove, if it receives a second punch within the time gap of reaction to the first punch. The same is possible for rifle recoil. This provides us with a window of opportunity to alter expected reactions, if we intervene precisely. 

The implications of this gap, if real; are profound. 

NB: This could also lead us to the question can we split time (which is continuous)?

Friday, 20 January 2017

Time Gap Hypothesis.

Attention physicists: Can anyone please tell whether the below statement makes any sense to you.

     "It is impossible to squeeze time completely out between an   action and its reaction". 

If it makes any sense, then I would call it Time Gap Hypothesis.