About PlaneMad

I’m Arun Ganesh,  grew up in the Middle East, became an engineer in Chennai and now studying Information Design at NID Bangalore. I usually run around the internet under the guise of PlaneMad, a name that was bestowed upon me in an aviation forum sometime in 2003. That was the time when I was exploring my fascination with aviation using Microsoft Flight Simulator and creating addons for it in the form of repaints of Indian aircraft, airport scenery and even modeling aircrafts using max.

Screen from the Il76 aircraft i created for flight simulator during my 11th garde

If thats not enough plane madness to convince you, I later hacked my FM radio receiver to listen to ATC frequencies figuring that theoretically it cant be too hard since the bands lie close to the fm radio band, and it wasnt. It freaked out my dad a bit too much when he actually heard the pilot through the radio and that I wasn’t joking. I had decided that an Air Traffic Controller was what I wanted to be, it seemed like fun at that time to order pilots around in the skies. Electronics and Communication Engineering was what I needed to study and that what brought me back to my homeland after living 18 years in Abu Dhabi.

Current info and contact details on my Google Profile page

18 responses to “About PlaneMad”

  1. Matt Daniels says :

    Hiya… love the Mumbai suburban rail map. I wish more people saw it and understood that this city is not too big to be tractable. We need more good design (along with other things). And as a former New Yorker I appreciate the stylistic nod.

    For a couple years now I’ve been sitting on a mostly complete bus map of the western suburbs here (also modeled on NYC’s) and after seeing your stuff (and your devotion to CC licensing) I feel like doing something about it! Thanks.

  2. planemad says :

    thanks Matt, its great to know that my work has been of help 🙂 yep, i agree, more than design its the usability aspect thats missing. absolutely terrible

  3. JK says :

    After reading Edward Truft books. i was wondering when we will get the usability maps in india. gothca there you are. you did a great job dude. keep doing the same..


  4. Scrumpulicious says :

    Found your website via the IndiaMike website! I was just wondering of you had an email address so I could get some advice about Chennai though I’m sure I will read your blog all weekend and figure it out!

    Thanks for all the info so far! 🙂

  5. Kart says :

    Hiya there!
    Been following your tweets for a while now and your passion for maps! I really love what you are doing and would like to contribute.
    Would be great if you could pass on your email id..


  6. Harsha says :


    The Chennai Suburban Railway map on Wikipedia is amazing.I’d like to do something like that for other Indian cities.Could you tell me which is a nice place to start learning all this?


    • planemad says :

      Thanks Harsha, best place to start is your home with a copy of inkscape. The more you work, the better you become. I cant think of any other way.

  7. rekha says :

    I am an architect ,chennai localite currently studying at the bauhaus(germany) and i am really impressed with your mapping work ..I have a drive to do things to improve the urban situation in my city(starting with the poor info communication system that exists ) but i had no idea where to start ..i start identifying the problems that seem to be handlable scale but when i sit down to do something i get carried away reading loads of info aand land up doing nothing … Can you tell me what drove you to do tis, ,are you a information graphic designer?? do you have a firm in mumbai ..

    • planemad says :

      hi rekha, what drove me to do this was the simple fact that i could do it, and nobody else was doing it.
      I’m currently studying information design at NID, so no firm as yet 🙂

  8. krishna says :

    hey arun, ive read your writing about chelakkara in wiki. Nice job. i was planning to do this from years, but you did it in colors. thanks behalf of all the people in chelakara.


  9. suzanne vandana says :

    PlaneMad, do u have a Facebook profile?

  10. Ketan says :


    I was searching for some resources for estimations of disease burden of coronary artery diseases, and suddenly it struck me that I ought to check out the Wikipedia article on disability-adjusted life year (DALY). There, I was struck by a very neatly done graphic, which I was so impressed with that I thought I ought to check out what organization had created it. I was surprised to realize that it was done in a personal capacity, and as must have already been guessed by you, by you. 🙂

    I was sufficiently impressed to want to find out more about ‘PlaneMad’, and that is how I’m here. 🙂

    Here’s the graphic I am talking of: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:DALY_disability_affected_life_year_infographic.png

    Kudos to you for the extensive and elegant information-design related work you have been doing!


  11. Laavanya says :

    I stumbled onto this while trawling through wikipedia. :3

  12. Shibu says :

    your link to google profile page is broken http://www.google.com/s2/profiles/113478971389051008326

  13. Neeraj Sahay says :

    dear arun, thank you for earthquake hazard zone map of india on wiki.
    i teach cinematography at srfti in kolkata.
    regs, n.

  14. Abhishek says :

    Hi Arun,

    I may be late considering the timing of your article on “Mapping a new way forward for Openstreetmap in India”. But better late than never. I have been experimenting with capabilities of Geomajas and Openstreetmap and I totally second your thoughts about the immense possibilities. I am in Bangalore. I would love to get in touch with you and know anything latest about your plans on open source GIS.


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