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Entries from September 2011

Multi-tasking – Part 2

September 30th, 2011 · No Comments

When I think of multi-tasking, we can borrow ideas from the world of software and operating systems. What we need is a sort of stack and “swap” area where the context of what we were doing when we got interrupted gets saved. That makes it easier to resume after the interruption has been dealt with. […]

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Multi-tasking – Part 1

September 29th, 2011 · 1 Comment

We have all been forced to handle multi-tasking given the nature of modern work – whether we like it or not. Phone ring, SMSes come, Skype messages pop up, emails arrive, people walk in to check on something, and so on. Every study shows that interruptions are not good, and it takes time to get […]

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India’s Changing Political Landscape

September 28th, 2011 · 4 Comments

It is fascinating how the past few months are changing the political game in India. Many things that were thought improbable are happening. I think all of this is for good. India needs a much deeper debate – that goes beyond the thin veneer, but probes deeper. We need to discuss the governance models, we […]

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New TRAI regulations on Do Not Call

September 27th, 2011 · 7 Comments

I have written multiple times in the past about the ill-thought out TRAI guidelines on allegedly combating spam. If ever there was something that was not good for both consumers and businesses, this is one such set of rules. They come into force from today, and I am quite sure they are going to disrupt […]

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Using Skype

September 26th, 2011 · 3 Comments

I must be Skype’s nth millionth user! Just started using it a few days ago. And it is quite a utility tool – primarily its IM, file transfer and group interaction capabilities. I always thought of Skype for the VoIP calls, and since my international calls were not that many, I didn’t bother much about […]

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Blog Past: India needs to create a Challenge Portal

September 25th, 2011 · 1 Comment

From my series on Gov 2.0 a year ago: India needs to create a Challenge Portal. Check the US challenge.gov portal. It involves putting out some of the challenges that government departments face, with an offer of reward and recognition. It gets people involved in thinking about the problems the nation faces and gets them […]

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Weekend Reading

September 24th, 2011 · 2 Comments

This week’s links: The Social Wars: by Seth Sternberg. “If history’s any guide, the social networks will compete for site distribution through traffic referral and cold, hard cash.” What if the Secret to Success Is Failure? from New York Times Sunday Magazine. “Why our children’s success — and happiness — may depend less on perfect […]

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Ideas and Innovations as a Differentiator

September 23rd, 2011 · 28 Comments

During a recent customer meeting, I realised that when talking (pitching), I needed to separate what I saying into two: The first part of what I was selling was effectively a commoditised set of products (email, SMS, etc.). Many other companies could offer the same set of products. Here, our pricing had to be competitive, […]

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Taking Notes in Meetings

September 22nd, 2011 · 43 Comments

I have written about this before, but it is always good to add a few additional points on what I think is a useful personal productivity tool. I like to make notes in meetings. The notes service five purposes for me: They help me stay focused on the meeting. When I make notes, I am […]

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Board Game Reco: Blokus

September 21st, 2011 · 1 Comment

Another board game that I picked up during the US trip was Blokus. Like Qwirkle, the learning takes barely a minute. And the game can be played in 20-30 minutes with 2 or 4 players. Games like these are fun time-fillers, and also make one think differently. They require much less thought that something like […]

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Quotes in Times of India on Friends of BJP

September 20th, 2011 · 1 Comment

Times of India had an article (with a fairly stupid headline) last week in which I was quoted: The FoBJP website says it is a “national movement driven by India’s rising middle class which is BJP-leaning and willing to be vocal about it. It is an associate organization of the BJP and aspires to be […]

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Getting to the Goal of Good Governance

September 19th, 2011 · 3 Comments

I gave a talk last week at a Friends of BJP event at Jai Hind College in Mumbai. Here it is. It is good to see middle class Indians all charged up and taking action against crooked politicians and corruption. But first, we need to understand what we are fighting for. What is our goal […]

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Blog Past: Cloud, Social, Mobile for Gov 2.0

September 18th, 2011 · No Comments

From my Gov 2.0 series of a year ago: India needs to leverage the new, emerging technologies of cloud, social and mobile across government. A combination of cloud computing, social media and mobile technologies promises to make technology implementations faster, better and cheaper, and at the same time more participative and real-time. Many implementations of […]

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Weekend Reading

September 17th, 2011 · No Comments

This week’s links: Social Power and the Coming Corporate Revolution: by  David Kirkpatrick. “Both your customers and your employees have started marching in this burgeoning social media multitude, and you’d better get out of their way—or learn to embrace them.” The New Apple Advantage: by John Gruber. “We’ll give Jobs the credit for the adjectives […]

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New Laptop Set-up

September 16th, 2011 · 3 Comments

While in the US, I bought a new laptop – the HP Pavilion dm4. It was available at a good price at Costco, and it was before HP decided to announce its decision to spin-off the PC division. The laptop itself is a pretty good one, though the engineering on the ports leaves a little […]

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A Liberal Arts Education

September 15th, 2011 · 7 Comments

As I have looked beyond tech in the past couple years and gotten more involved on working to bring political and policy change in India, I have acutely felt the lack of a liberal arts education. The only economics and stuff I studied was the few Humanities courses in IIT, which we sort-of sleepwalked through. […]

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Restaurant Reco: Quattro at Lower Parel in Mumbai

September 14th, 2011 · 1 Comment

I had dinner the other day at Quattro, which is opposite Phoenix Mills at Lower Parel near the southern end of the flyover. It is an all-veg Italian-Mexican restaurant, with plenty of options for Jain dishes. Its small hole-in-the-wall entrance  is easy to miss. The inside is amazingly large! The food and presentation was excellent. […]

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Flying Emirates

September 13th, 2011 · 7 Comments

I took Emirates from Mumbai to San Francisco, via Dubai. This was a new route for me. The past couple times I have taken Air-India to New York, and then a local flight to SF. But given the uncertainty with Air India (one is never sure if they have enough money to pay for the […]

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Writing One’s Obituary – Today

September 12th, 2011 · 68 Comments

I was talking to a friend recently, and the topic turned to what to do with the rest of one’s life. It was then that I suggested that he should write his obituary and then work backwards from there. Let me explain. We normally think incrementally forward from where we are – the next few […]

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Blog Past: India needs Open Government

September 11th, 2011 · No Comments

I had attended Gov 2.0 last September. Here is one of the ideas I wrote about after the conference: 1.       India needs to embrace the open government and open data movement. When President Obama took over in January 2009, he issued the Open Government and Open Data directive. The focus was on making government more […]

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