Archive for September, 2006

Some thought-provoking statements!

September 28, 2006

American society is being hollowed out so there is only a top and a bottom.

The prescription for making globalisation work is what is generally called “the Scandinavian model.” That means high levels of investment in education, research, and technology plus a strong safety net. That of course also entails, as in the Scandinavian countries, a highly progressive income tax.

Clearly, the IMF had lost all political legitimacy.

Take a look at this interview with Economist and Nobel Laureate Stiglitz in the Hindu for more!

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Excerpts from a tea filter bag!

September 28, 2006

Tazo: The reincarnation of Tea. Darjeeling organic varietal black tea.Exotic floral and nutty notes with a pungent fresh flavour, capturing the essence of Himalayas.

Sitting on the porch of a bungalow on a tea planatation in Darjeeling, you can see the peaks of Everest and Kanchenjunga as you sip a cup of this exquisite brew. Life is good.

To ask questions, share observations, or simply have a bit of human contact, write us at …

Gandhigiri and Gandhism!

September 27, 2006

Mihir Shah in the Hindu as to why and how Gandhigiri touches the core of Gandhism.

“Academic job” search!

September 27, 2006

Here is an article (among others) about job search; link via orgtheory.

Software: management and distribution!

September 27, 2006

Here is an article about good software management practices; link via Joel Spolsky. It has some, shall we say, interesting information about XP:

Well, people pretty quickly demonstrated that XP was a load of crap. Take Pair Programming, for instance. It’s one of the more spectacular failures of XP. None of the Agileytes likes to talk about it much, but let’s face it: nobody does it. The rationale was something like: “well if ONE programmer sitting at a terminal is good, then TEN must be better, because MORE is ALWAYS better! But most terminals can only comfortably fit TWO programmers, so we’ll call it PAIR programming!”

But, the more interesting stuff is the Google management practices that are described. An extremely interesting (if opinionated) article, worth a look!

Here is an article in Linux journal about Debian vs Firefox, and Torvalds vs FSF:

Two hot issues are making the rounds. First, Debian and Firefox are having a spat, and the end result may be that Debian will distribute Firefox under a different name. Second, the war betwen Linus Torvalds and other Kernel developers and the Free Software Foundation over GPLv3 is continuing, with Torvalds saying he’s fed up with the FSF. Here is my take on both, and related issues.

Very nicely argued. Have fun!

An interview with Rosanna Warren!

September 27, 2006

Orgtheory strongly recommends this interview with Rosanna Warren in the Kenyon Review.

Building a successful software business!

September 27, 2006

Mike Taber has some ideas, in case, you are not able to enlist the support of Y combinator. All it takes is dedication, decent level  of skills as a developer, and a bit of money. If you think you have got  what it takes, head over and check his ideas out.

World War II and Thamizh cinema!

September 26, 2006

In a delightful essay in Frontline, Theodore Bhaskaran talks about the way World War II affected Indian (primarily South Indian, and Tamil) cinema. Apart from nuggets such as this,

There was another development during the War. Indian movie-makers had been using Agfa film. This was manufactured in Germany, and supply of this raw stock stopped with the outbreak of the War. Japan entered the War in 1941, and after that getting Kodak film also became tough. So the industry faced a severe shortage of raw stock…

K.B. Sundarambal (she would later become the first film actor in the country to enter the legislature)…

One interesting feature of the film is a Burmese dance sequence, which was hand-tinted, making it one of the earliest colour-film sequences to be screened in India. It was also one of the earliest Indian films to portray an assertive female character, played convincingly by Rajakantham.

some of the stalwarts of Thamizh cinema of that era — SS Vasan, Koththamangalam Subbu, Honnappa Bhagavathar, Serukalathur Sama, K B Sunadarambal, and TS Balaiya, among others — make an appearance in the essay. No essay in recent times had given me so much of pleasure (and reminded me of all those days that I spent listening to the stories of my Grandmother about her movie expeditions). A certainly not-to-be-missed piece.

Dawkins’ interview!

September 26, 2006

Boing Boing tells us about Dawkins’ interview on BBC. Have fun!

Proteins and a mathematician!

September 26, 2006

Today I attended a talk by Misha Gromov titled Protein problems: how a mathematician may think. I learnt about the Hardy-Weinberg theorem, which was very interesting. By the way, the Wiki page of Prof. Gromov has some interesting links at the end about his work. Have fun!