Thursday, August 31, 2006

Thats why i succeed - Michael Jordan

I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.

Michael Jordan

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Tourists in Goa

I have categorised the Indian tourists who visit Goa into three broad types. Here is a brief description of each..

1) Single and available guys =>

These type wear Goa Beach T-shirts and stare at every girl they can get their eyes on. They come to Goa believing that Goa is some kind of an Axeland with bikini babes and hot parties and lots of booze thrown together. The ones from neighbouring states and down south travel in a jeep or SUV all cramped together with hardly any space to move a finger. Some hire bikes and make their presence felt by doing all that mummy said dont do. One of the best places to spot such a breed is on the beaches ogling at sun bathing white - skinned travellers while the more adventurous ones venture into the water and try to make conversation and get closer to western babes in the Arabian Sea. I have a feeling they go home disappointed at not really getting what they came here for, and for believing Pappu the braggart's cooked up stories of his exploits with hot babes in Goa. Anyways, they do go home lighter(on the wallet) and more sensible(hopefully!) and with some extra masala-packaged fiction for Pappu.

2) Couples =>
These are a very distinct and easily recognisable breed. Most of these types are newly married which explains the combination of micro-minis and tons of red bangles. Fashion etiquette is thrown out of the window, and everything Mummy and Daddy had prohibited before marriage(I am talking about the clothes) is on full display. The men hate it when their wife stops in front of the beach shops to buy not-needed and not-wearable in hometown clothes that have price tags especially crafted for the European pockets. The BTMs (Behenji-turned-Mods) make sure they do and wear everything they cannot wear back home. And if the couple is not newly married, they must be some corporate couple out for a break from their hectic schedules or a couple who believe that variety is the spice of life and seek confidential interference.

3) Families and big groups=>
They come in groups in special tour buses. They are so many in number, i think they bring the entire village along. Every conceivable colour the human eye can detect is hidden somewhere in this very colourful, and vibrant procession of tourists. Their decibel level is unmatched, and they want to be the cynosure of all eyes. And you can hear them cribbing about how their hometown is better and cleaner than Goa. The grumbling never stops. Or you have these groups of college goers who are come on some kind of a tour and they look like they have just emerged from the sea(Samundar mein nahake aur bhi namkeen and all ...). Sometimes though, its just the smaller " hum do hamare do " group. There is Pappu ke pita, Pappu ki maa, Pappu and Chintu. Such groups are more argument friendly and more grumpy.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Microsoft v/s General Motors

Another forwarded mail here


At a recent computer expo (COMDEX), Bill Gates reportedly compared the
computer industry with the auto industry and stated, "If GM had kept up
with technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving
$25.00 cars that got 1,000 miles to the gallon."

In response to Bill's comments, General Motors issued a press release

If GM had developed technology like Microsoft, we would all be driving
cars with the following characteristics (and I just love this part, esp
7th point):

1. For no reason whatsoever, your car would crash twice a day.

2. Every time they repainted the lines in the road, you would have to
buy a new car.

3. Occasionally your car would die on the freeway for no reason. You
would have to pull to the side of the road, close all of the windows,
shut off the car, restart it, and reopen the windows before you could
continue. For some reason you would simply accept this.

4. Occasionally, executing a maneuver such as a left turn would cause
your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which case you would
have to reinstall the engine.

5. Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, was
reliable, five times as fast and twice as easy to drive - but would run on only
five percent of the roads.

6. The oil, water temperature, and alternator warning lights would all
be replaced by a single "This Car Has Performed an Illegal Operation"
warning light.

7. The airbag system would ask "Are you sure?" before deploying.

8. Occasionally, for no reason whatsoever, your car would lock you out
and refuse to let you in until you simultaneously lifted the door
handle, turned the key and grabbed hold of the radio antenna.

9. Every time a new car was introduced car buyers would have to learn
how to drive all over again because none of the controls would operate
in the same manner as the old car.

10. You'd have to press the "Start" button to turn the engine off.

Reservations and Quotas

I have been getting some hilarious forwards..

Cant help but post them ..


The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks the ant's a fool and laughs & dances & plays the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter so he dies out in the cold.

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter.

The grasshopper thinks the ant's a fool and laughs & dances & plays the summer away.

Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.

BBC, CNN, EURO-NEWS, NDTV, FOX NEWS show up to provide pictures of the
shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food.

The World is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be that this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Arundhati Roy stages a demonstration in front of the ant's house.

The Internet is flooded with online petitions seeking support to the grasshopper.

Opposition MP's stage a walkout.

Left parties call for "Bharat Bandh" in West Bengal and Kerala demanding a Judicial Enquiry. Finally, the Judicial Committee drafts the Prevention of Terrorism Against Grasshoppers Act [POTAGA]", with effect from the beginning of the winter.

The ant is fined for failing to comply with POTAGA and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the Government and handed over to the grasshopper in a ceremony covered by BBC,CNN, AAJTAK and NDTV.

Arundhati Roy calls it "a triumph of justice".

Sonia invites the grasshopper to address the Parliament .......

Got The Answer...???

YES... You Got It Right...

Some call it RESERVATION n Some call it QUOTA!

Friday, August 25, 2006

We love you Microsoft

Stars are blind..

Paris Hilton has a reputation, we all know.

The video of her song 'stars are blind' has been played on Indian TV and it is not half as bad as some of the sleazy crap that gets on Indian TV.

The CBFC has issued it a 'A' certificate which means it will not be aired on Indian TV henceforth.

Guys, get a life.. Its just a music video (not starring Rick Salomon). If at all you do decide to ban the thing, apply the same yardstick to other videos (includes Rakhi Sawant videos as well) coz they are just as much a corrupting influence on the unspoilt and chaste viewers of Indian TV.

By the way, the Indian censor board has a reputation too...

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Unlucky Indian hockey - on and off the field

Something about Indian hockey just does not seem right. We have lost out on our attacking flair, in trying to cope up with the astro-turf surface and are seemingly relying on grooming one dimensional players in the Sohail Abbas mould - the so called penalty corner specialists. Post the Dhanraj Pillay era and an Arjun Halappa will not match a Pillay unless you are talking about the hairstyle, the penalty corner conversions hold a great deal of significance.

And when you have a player like Sandeep Singh with an above 50% success rate in penalty corners indisposed in a freak accident and unable to take the field, it just gets harder.

First Jugraj's car accident and now Sandeep.

This should be an opportunity for the team to prove the critics and there is no better time than now.

Pak tearing their 'hair' out!!

The latest controversy in world cricket has brought to the forefront the issue of ball tampering. Fingers of suspicion being pointed at Darrell Hair's dubious record and traditional 'tamperers' Pakistan by opposing lobbies. It is but natural that Australia will stand by their umpire, backed by the ECB. Which means that the Asia powerhouses will unite to stand by Pakistan. Asia is where the moolah is which means a compromise will ultimately be worked out in due course of time.

The racism card is being played out again. As if the Dean Jones fluff wasn't enough, this is an issue which can be done without and which world cricket does not need. The media will add to the histrionics.

On a positive note (faintly positive though), it has brought the opinions of umpires to the forefront. The unsung heroes are finally getting faint shades of spotlight. Indian umpires Piloo Reporter, K. Hariharan, Ram Gupta for once are finding their opinions sought by the media.

The issue is not about Inzamam's honour or Hair's pride or Woolmer tugging the middle line, but whether an individual is greater than a country. My guess is its a non issue till something major crops up like Australians or Englishmen subjected to racial taunts or unfair umpiring or doctored pitches while on tour in the subcontinent. Now that will definitely snow ball into an issue.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

"We need a transformation"

Justice VR Krishna Iyer in an interview to Rediff

Do you have hope in the new generation of India?

That is my only hope. Let us hope the generation will do something about bringing radical changes in Independent India. Ambedkar once said: 'Every generation is a new nation.' So this new generation of India may be a new nation with new ideas.
India cannot be changed by old men like me. But certainly India can be changed by the new generation. I have hope in them. We need a transformation, which has to be through the young. The young are going to be in a majority shortly in India. Let us take the young into our fold and make them feel India is ours.

Here is the full interview

Wednesday, August 16, 2006


There are 3.22 Million Indians in America.
38% of Doctors in America are Indians.
12% of Scientists in America are Indians.
36% of NASA employees are Indians.
34% of MICROSOFT employees are Indians.
28% of IBM employees are Indians.
17% of INTEL employees are Indians.
13% of XEROX employees are Indians.
You may know some of these facts. These
facts were recently published in a German
Magazine, which deals with

India never invaded any country in her last
100000 years of history.
India invented the Number System.
Aryabhatta invented zero.
The World's first university was established in
Takshila in 700BC.More than 10,500 students from
all over the world studied more than 60 subjects. The
University of Nalanda built in the 4th century BC
was one of the greatest achievements of ancient India
in the field of education.
Sanskrit is the mother of all the European
languages. Sanskrit is the most suitable language
for computer software reported in Forbes magazine,
July 1987.

Ayurveda is the earliest school of medicine
known to humans. Charaka, the father of medicine
consolidated Ayurveda 2500 years ago. Today
Ayurveda is fast regaining its rightful place
in our civilization.
Although modern images of India often show
poverty and lack of development, India was the
richest country on earth until the time of
British invasion in the early 17th Century.
The art of Navigation was born in the river
Sindh 6000 years ago.
The very word Navigation is derived from
the Sanskrit word NAVGATIH.
The Word navy is also derived from Sanskrit 'Nou'.

Bhaskaracharya calculated the time taken by the
earth to orbit the sun hundreds of years before the
astronomer Smart.; Time taken by earth to orbit
the sun: (5th century) 365.258756484 days.
Budhayana first calculated the value of pi, and
he explained the concept of what is known as the
Pythagorean Theorem. He discovered this in the
6th century long before the European mathematicians
Algebra, trigonometry and calculus came from
India; Quadratic equations were by Sridharacharya in the
11th century ; The largest numbers the
Greeks and the Romans
used were 10 6(10 to the power of 6) whereas
Hindus Used numbers as big as 1053 (10 to the
power of 53) with specific names as Early as 5000 BCE
during the Vedic period. Even today, the largest
used number is Tera 1012(10 to the power of 12).

According to the Gemological Institute of
America, up until 1896,India was the only source for
diamonds to the world.
USA based IEEE has proved what has been a
century-old suspicion in the world scientifi
community that the pioneer of Wireless
communication was Prof. Jagdeesh Bose and not Marconi.

The earliest reservoir and dam for irrigation was
built in Saurashtra. According to Saka King
rudradaman I of 150 CE a beautiful lake
called 'Sudarshana'
was constructed on the hills of Raivataka during
Chandragupta Maurya's time.

Chess (Shataranja or AshtaPada) was invented in India.

Sushruta is the father of surgery. 2600
years ago he and health scientists of his time
conducted complicated surgeries like cesareans,
cataract, artificial limbs, fractures, urinary
stones and even plastic surgery and brain surgery. Usage
of anesthesia was well known in ancient India.
Over 125 surgical equipment were used. Deep
knowledge of anatomy, etiology, embryology, digestion,
metabolism, genetics and immunity is also found
in many texts.

When many cultures were only nomadic forest
dwellers over 5000 years ago, Indians
established Harappan culture in Sindhu
Valley (Indus Valley Civilization)
The place value system, the decimal system
was developed in India in 100 BC.


Albert Einstein said: We owe a lot to the
Indians, who taught us how to count, without
which no worthwhile scientific discovery could
have been made.
Mark Twain said: India is the cradle of the
human race, the birthplace of human speech, the mother
of history, the grandmother of legend, and the great
grand mother of tradition. Our most valuable and most
structive materials in the history of man are treasured
up in India only.
French scholar Romain Rolland said: If there is
one place on the face of earth where all
the dreams of living men have found a home from
the very earliest days when man began the dream
of existence, it is India.
Hu Shih, former Ambassador of China to USA said:
India conquered And dominated China culturally
for 20 centuries without ever having to send a single
soldier across her border.
All the above is just the TIP of the iceberg, the
list could be endless. BUT, if we don't see even a
glimpse of that great India in the India That we see
today, it
clearly means that we are not working up to our
Potential and that if we do, we could once
again; be an ever shining and Inspiring country
setting a bright path for rest of the world to follow.
I Hope you enjoyed it and work towards the welfare
of INDIA. PROUD to be an INDIAN.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Stock market - how it works!!!

Monday, August 07, 2006

Pen is mightier than the sword

A good way for those in the public domain within the purview of Indian cinema, politics or cricket, to make some moolah so that their great grandchildren's children have their pockets full for their lifetimes - write a tell-all book.

Now, to publish a book, you either do a Jaswant or a Wright (sorry you cant do any Kaavya, coz this is a tell-tale book, and it is widely accepted in modern civilisation that tell-tales are not fictitious stuff that can be picked from J. K. Rowling).

The Jaswant method is applied when you have no content but no one is stopping you from pretending that you do have jumbo scoops. You can do a Johar, which means just like how the making of the movie is shown before its release on a news channel like NDTV, you can choose to send an extract from your book with some juicy tidbits to a national publication. Ideally the
extract should have many doggones and incriminate some specimen in any act that is drastically unexpected and wispy. The disadvantage is you might end up putting your foot in the mouth, but if you are used to it, then its negligible.

The Wright method may take longer. After you retire, you move to the mountains, maybe the Himalayas since the Andes are too far away. From there, you act as though you have been struck by some strange bolt of lightning that has opened your eyes and senses to things that you had never come across before. You publish them all in a book. Stay put in the mountains but do make sure your book gets widely circulated in the valleys below and the plains and plateaus and everywhere else. The hitch here is that old friends will become new enemies. But then, you can always write another book to make them happy.

The History of Wikipedia

Can thousands of Wikipedians be wrong?

How an attempt to build an online encyclopedia touched off history’s biggest experiment in collaborative knowledge...

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Innovations and predictions

Ramit Sethi endeavours to capture the importance of doing things now and not later. For people synonymous with procrastination and dillydallying, it might be an eye-opener. Good on you, dude!! I would rather hold back and keep my cards close to my chest for a wee bit longer. Enthusiasm is good, but coupled with incautiousness can create an atmosphere that smacks of indecision and confusion. What works for some, may work for others too, but in the opposite direction.

Rajesh Shetty points out 10 different approaches to innovation. The focus will be on merging different approaches into a single, flexible approach. Companies that evolve and figure out better ways of keeping the keys to the ulterior in their innovation pipelines will survive in a world where being second best will just not be good enough.

The real challenge is to be in a position to predict whats coming in the next 10 years in terms of technology and business. We can analyse the past, study the present but can we forecast future trends?? The toughest part of R&D would be keep track of the changing world and predict accurately what would be the rage 10 years from now on.

Some predictions that have gone horribly wrong -

“I have traveled the length and breadth of this country and talked with the best people, and I can assure you that data processing is a fad that won’t last out the year.”
The editor in charge of business books for Prentice Hall, 1957

“I think there’s a world market for about 5 computers.”
Thomas J. Watson, Chairman of the Board, IBM (around 1948)

“The ‘telephone’ has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered a means of communication.”
Western Union Internal Memo, 1876

“Who the hell wants to hear actors talk ?”
Harry M. Warner, Warner Bros, 1927

“There is no reason for any individuals to have a computer in their home.”
Ken Olsen, President, Chairman and Founder of DEC, 1977

“Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible.”
Lord Kelvin, President, Royal Society 1895

“That is the biggest fool thing we have ever done. The bomb will never go off, and I speak as an expert in explosives.”
Admiral William Leahy. (Advice to President Truman, when asked his opinion of the atomic bomb project.)

“We don’t like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out.”
Decca Recording Co. rejecting the Beatles in 1962

Friday, August 04, 2006

Choices - tough and pleasant..

I travel to work in the Kadamba Transport Corporation shuttle from Panjim to Vasco. It takes about 45 mins each way. Its smoother and faster than the creaky KTC big buses with clattering window panes and forever vibrating seats. So I spend more than an hour and a half travelling. Michelle suggested I carry a good book. Which is what I am doing. I am currently reading "The World Is Flat". Sometimes I wonder if the book is a good idea. Because there are times when I dont miss the sights. The route is the same, I know. But there is some thing about the way I feel when I can sense the breeze blowing in my face and nature in all its splendour, and in the background the green hills and the sea. The Goan countryside has this very charming knack of luring you.

Last Sunday when we were at Chapora, the view was breathtaking. The monsoons made sure all was green and a sight to behold. So much of Goa is still unexplored, and my excitement to see the remote places is similiar to that of the child eagerly waiting to open his or her Christmas presents on Christmas morning. This is why I love Goa. Reason number one, its so easy in Goa to get lost in the green fields or the green hills or head to the beach to soak in the sights, and feel refreshed. Reason number two, I can never get lost here. You speak Konkani and you will be dropped home. Whichever corner of Goa I am in, I am bound to bump into someone I know. If I dont bump into familiar faces, friends will be just a phone call away. Nothing beats this place, now and never will. I am a nature junkie. More than that, I will always be a Goa junkie.

Its a tough choice this one - a good book or the sights! Which explains why i just finished only 200 pages.. 350 more to go!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Mole kaun hai.. malum hai kya??

Luka Chuppi bahut huyi saamne aa ja naa..

According to Wikipedia,

1) Moles are often said to be blind but this is incorrect.
The mole has eyes and ears but they are incredibly small so
they do not become filled with earth when digging.

2) Mole fur is very fine and velvety and usually black,
it can point in any direction with ease, so is specially
adapted for life in tunnels.

Uncanny resemblance to ...??

5 Lessons from Philip Kotler

The problems for marketing? "It has become a one-P discipline. Selling," Philip Kotler declares. Maybe he means "peddling", because the guru is clearly unhappy with the stop-gap approach many managers adopt these days: "Marketing professionals lack accountability and hence take short term decisions."

Kotler recommends that CEOs should get a pay-out several years after they leave an organisation, which may engender more long-term decision-making.

Some lessons from the day-long seminar:

Lesson 1: R&D must be market-ready

Kotler had a poser for his audience. His question: "If you were the chief marketing officer of your organisation, who would you prefer to be close to? The CEO, CFO, CIO (chief information officer) or the CRO (chief research officer)?" There was no single opinion, so Kotler decided to have the final say. He would have had it, anyways.

According to Kotler, the CMO needs to be close to everybody from the CEO to the CRO. Typically, the CFO does not see logic in investing behind brands because he is not close to marketing. And, there is an 80 per cent failure rate in new products.

"The R&D is farthest away from customers, hence they often get it wrong," he explained. Now, even in research-focused organisations like IT giant Microsoft, "marketing has become the front door and their new product success rate has become higher".

Lesson 2: Number-crunching is more than just calculating market shares

"In B-schools most students choose marketing because they did not like accounts," quips Kotler. He recommends that instead, most marketing professionals must be "clued into finance" so that the other functions in the company take marketing seriously.

"The CMO must demonstrate the return on marketing investment," he says. Kotler recommends the creation of a marketing scorecard that captures the number of new customers added every year, measures the satisfaction level of current customers and indicates the brand health.

Lesson 3: The co-creation mantra

"Make your business a workshop where your customer can draw what he wants," recommends Kotler, adding "marketing is the delivery of experience". His example is the Four Seasons hotel chain that customises hotel rooms for its guests. Whenever possible, the next time the guest visits the hotel, he gets the same room.

"While the aim of business is to create satisfied customers, the truth is companies continue to lose unsatisfied customers."

The message: plug the leaks by exceeding customer satisfaction and customer delight, moving to a higher level - customer astonishment. Kotler feels that iconic brands like Harley Davidson and iPod reach these higher levels.

What else? Devise a net promoter score to track customer satisfaction levels. Round up your most loyal customers. Ask them if they would recommend your products to others and become promoters for your brand. If the number of those promoters is increasing, it's a good score. Otherwise get the point.

Lesson 4: Expand market size

Kotler begins this lesson with the story of Jack Welch, the legendary CEO of General Electric who made it a thumb rule that GE would only operate in businesses where it was a dominant player.

When Welch asked his managers about GE's market share in their business, the executives would give impressive numbers in the range of 50 per cent.

Welch would reply, "I think it's only 10 per cent. We have not tapped the rest of the market." Kotler's point: in your rush to hit the bull's eye, don't miss out on the markets that surround the sweet spot. The dart board is bigger. There are more places to hit.

Lesson 5: Strategic trajectory for Indian brands

Indian companies face two challenges - defending their markets against the invasion of foreign labels. The second is to develop strong global brands themselves.

According to Kotler, the trajectory for Indian brands is to move from being seen as low-cost average quality products, to low-cost superior quality and finally to higher-end products.

He gives the example of Haier, the Chinese consumer durables company, which has successfully acquired a global brand status. In its first stage, Haier fixed quality. In the second stage, the company diversified its product basket from just making refrigerators to mcrowaves, dishwashers, vacuum cleaners and other products.

The third stage was to globalise. Most importantly, Kotler recommends that Indian companies must lean on research. "Instead of reducing marketing to advertising and selling, it makes sense to stick to research," says the 75-year-old, with child-like enthusiasm for his pet subject.