Friday, September 19, 2008

Financial Times... Un-Financial Times..

What happens in a recession? What happens in a depression? How does an economy lose its top-most position and become just another country following the leader? All these questions will get answered in the coming 2-5 years time. An experience and an occurrence which happens once in a lifetime.

As most people would know, or would have found out by now, the bubble called United States of America, the dreamland, the benchmark for all countries to achieve, is on the verge of bursting. Just like other bubbles, for e.g. the dot-com bubble, this will be a very big reality check for the world. It will be a check for people to understand and realize the value of money. USA and all its luxuries and spending habits eroded the value of money. People all across the world have been for many years adopting all the habits (i must admit that some good but mostly bad ones) of the Americans and Americanizing themselves forgetting their own cultures and heritage. As a result, everywhere people have forgotten the value of money. They don't realize that earning money is hard enough but making it grow and multiply is harder still. Once they start earning they seem to think that can afford anything and take loans and start living on credit. WAKE UP everyone! See what that has done to Uncle Sam and will ultimately do to us.

Lehman Brothers, AIG, Bear Stearns, Morgan Stanley.... how many more great names will be added to this list? how many countries will come in this list? USA? Japan? India?..

Centrals Banks trying to increase global liquidity and stabilizing the US Dollar shows that some people have realized the threat. But what they have done is just extended the time needed for the collapse of the US Dollar. The average person who reads the newspapers will not realize the extent to which this can and will effect us and most of the countries round the world. USD is the only international currency in today's world. When it collapses what will the world use to trade with each other? Will they still value everything in the USD? or will we have to alternate to the Barter System?

This current international monetary system was established in 1945 with the Bretton Woods Conference. Valuing everything to the Dollar was decided, it probably, was the intelligent thought of the day then! But for more than 60 years this system has not been changed, has not been adjusted, has not been modified for the current scenario and trends. This system is obviously unsuitable for today's level of cross-border transactions and transfer of money. How valuing currencies of so many countries to one currency could stand the test of 60 years is something i will never understand! You are valuing something with reference to something whose intrinsic value itself keeps on changing and shifting with time. This is probably the most foolish thing to do. The value of a standard against which other things are valued should be stable and its worth should not change in the short-term.

We should never have stopped valuing our currencies against Gold. It was the currency in ancient times and should be the value of our currencies now. The Economists of the world have studied in detail and understood the repurcussions of the previous gold-standard, they can help us devise a new standard based on gold such that those repurcusssions do not occur again. A standard which will be flexible and adopt itself as society changes itself over time.

Ultimately we should look at Free Trade Areas with a more open mind. With the working of the EU we now know that however difficult, FTAs do work. Our ultimate aim and goal should be to make the whole world an FTA such that we have one currency. Its then and only then that there will come about a betterment in other areas of life and human aspects.

The collapse of the US into a catastrophic recession is not far, it has been inevitable for the past 4 years and is not far away. Look ahead for hard times to come, especially for countries like China, India, Japan, Britain. Its going to get tough soon. 1929 will soon seem like a walk in the park. Whether the Tough will get going is yet to be seen.

But it is a big chance for India, we should pull up our pants and get ready to provide leadership to the world. This chance will not come again for a long long time. Will we be ready then (i mean the next time this chance comes around)? we can't say, but for now we should open the door when opportunity knocks and here she is standing outside the door waiting for the correct time to knock.

--> SJ

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Quote Blast

"The identity of the official whose alleged responsibility for this hypothetical oversight has been the subject of recent discussion is not shrouded in quite such impenetrable obscurity as certain previous disclosures may have led you to assume, but, not to put too fine a point on it, the individual in question is, it may surprise you to learn, one whom your present interlocutor is in the habit of defining by means of the perpendicular pronoun."
-Sir Humphrey Appleby, Yes Minister (1980)

Confessing to his boss that he was responsible in causing a loss of 40m Pounds to the Government of The United Kingdom.
Talk about talking through your hat.. lol

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Quote Blast

We live in accordance with our deep, driving desire.
It is this desire at the time of death
that determines what our next life is to be.
We will come back to earth to work
out the satisfaction of that desire.

-The Upanishads

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


And Google does it again!!

Its not surprising that once again Google has come out with an exquisite product. All of google's products launched till date have been a wonder of simplicity and ingenuity. Elegance, and simplicity seems to be the main idea behind all their designs. Take a look at Gmail, Gtalk, Google Earth etc.. This company has the perfect mix of elegance, simplicity, user-friendliness, and common sense in its products. This is what makes its products a hit. One can say its the opposite of Microsoft. Microsoft is like the prodigal guy - a show-off, a wannabe, an empty vessel which makes a lot of noise. Microsoft makes  a lot of promises but does not deliver, Google on the other hand does not make any promises but keeps on delivering with surprising alacrity.

Like all its other products, Google has made its new browser Google Chrome a pinnacle of aesthetic simplicity, design perfection and user friendliness. A look through Google's intoductory page |Link| on Google Chrome will give you the whole idea behind this revolutionary browser. In the comic book introduction Google talks about the ideas behind Chrome and the conecpts they have used in building the browser.

It has taken Mozilla Firefox's concept of Tabbed Browsing and finally taken it to a new level.  Firefox was the first browser to start this revolution, which was adopted by other popular browsers like opera, Netscape, Apple's Safari etc... and also now by Google Chrome. 

Much of the browser has been based on the Firefox. Google has been extremely supportive of Mozilla over the years and recently extended their revenue contract to 2011. In a way you can say and/or infer that while Mozilla did all the hard and dirty work of R&D and taking all the risk of venturing into untried waters (which, nonetheless, turned out to be successful), the main benefits will now be enjoyed by Google who has incorporated a lot of Mozilla's features into Chrome.

Features of Chrome:
- Tabbed Browsing.
  Like all present day browsers, Chrome supports tabbed browsing. This means u have multiple browser inside one big window. Saves up all the clutter in the taskbar and makes work neat and organized. They have incorporated the feature of dragging the tabs from one position to another (like in all other tabbed browsers). And have added the feature of creating a new window with any tab by simply dragging that tab out of the row of tabs and voila that page will be in a new window (As shown in the 2 images below).


In the same way you can put the new window back into the old or shuffle tabs among multiple windows. Another change with the tabs has been to change the look of the UI. Other browsers keep the address bar in the same position and the tabs under that indicating one browser with multiple browser windows. Chrome on the other hand has multiple tabs with each tab having its own address bar and navigation buttons. This is is mostly a cosmetic change, but this small change signifies a bigger change in the operation of the browser.

- Multi Threading (This is the most significant change they have made in the world of web-browsers)
  All other browsers are one browser with different windows to view web pages. To explain in more simpler terms: All other browsers with multiple tabs use the same engine to access the web. This means that the browser has one brain which it uses to process the data from the user and/or the webpages. If there is a JavaScript (or other kinds of scripts) in a webpage, it means that the browser will pass control to the script and wait till that script finishes execution and pass control back to the browser. So if there is a script running in one Tab and it hangs then the browser will not be able to display anything in any other tab also as the script is still in command of the browser and has hung. So this haults all your work.

To prevent this from happening, Google has made Chrome to be a multi-threaded browser. Each tab is a browser of its own and has individual processes. This means that everytime you open a new tab a new browser (and not just a new window) is opened. If you ever take a look at your OS' task manager (ctrl+alt+del) you'll find that there are as many chrome.exe applications running as as many tabs u have opened.

This makes Chrome into a memory gobbling browser. Since i downloaded Chrome my RAM usage has increased by atleast 8%. I have a 2GB RAM and pre-chrome my usage used to hover around 48% with Firefox hogging up atleast 110MB of my RAM. Post-Chrome release my RAM Usage shows 56% and multiple Chrome applications eating up my RAM from a range of 51MB to 2MB. At one look it seems that Chrome uses up less RAM as it all shows amounts much lower than Firefox. But a deeper analysis will show that Chrome is actually using a lot more memory than Firefox. |Link to ScreenShot|

But this also means that at the cost of RAM usage you get a browser which is actually lightning fast. Be it Internet Explorer, Opera, or Safari - Chrome beats everyone of them hands down. Apple claims Safari to be the "the fastest, easiest-to-use web browser", and it was faster than IE or Opera, but now Chrome leaves Safari (and all other browsers) coughing in the dust.

- New UI
  I have already spoken about a part of the UI earlier, so now comes the rest. The UI is light on the eyes and a pleasure to look at. It is the most un-clutteres space i've seen. Every other browser has so many buttons and options and menus but Chrome has the least amount of space for buttons and the most for viewing the page. 

The traditional windows menus File, Edit, View, History etc.. have disappeared and in place we have 2 buttons- one with the icon of the page and the other with the icon of a spanner, in the same row as the address bar and nav buttons. These 2 buttons contain all the necessary options.

When you point at a link the URL throws up at the bottom of the screen. They have removed the old status bar but have redesigned it to throw up whenever required. When downloading a file a download bar appears at the bottom of the tab in which ur downloading. It shows the completion rates and a small menu from which u can choose to open in containing folder or u want to open the file downloaded. They have done away with the option of open or save as that Firfox and IE give. |ScreenShot 1, 2, 3|

Adding Bookmarks always used to be an option by either right clicking on the page you want to bookmark or by click on the bookmark or favourites (incase of IE) and choosing the "Add..." option. Firefox 3 introduced an option of adding a bookmark by clicking on a star shown at the end of the address in the address bar. Chrome has incorporated this but has put the star at the beginning of the address bar. |ScreenShot|

Another change they have incorporated is in the homepage. Normally people used to either set a website or a blank page as their homepage. But, in Chrome they show the most visited sites and recent bookmarks as well the search engines used on the homepage. Making the homepage into a very efficient tool which loads instantly coz its stored on the harddisk of the computer. |ScreenShot|

- Incognito
  A new concept that Chrome introduces is of surfing the world Incognito. This means you can go to any site you want and no one (in ur personal circle) would be the wiser. This session is a read-only session and doesn't store any permanent history, cache or cookies on the hardisk. As soon as the incognito window is closed the history and other temporary data gets wiped out. Google has not missed out on humour in this browser. When you open an Incognito session you see warnings/disclaimers on the homepage. And reading the last warning is really a laugh :D

Chrome wants to be positive and promote it as an option that provides additional security when you want to do sensitive transactions over the web. I'm sure they haven't missed out the obvious but just refuse to talk about it. An incognito session is a dream session for hackers or for children who want to be naughty.

- Application Shortcuts
  This option allows you to position a webpage as an icon on your desktop and/or Start Menu and/or Quick Launch (for Windows). Your actually creating a shortcut that when run opens up that page in a new window. So now you will not have to open Chrome and then navigate from the homepage to that certain page which you use very often. Just use this feature and voila all u need to do is use this shortcut to goto to that page or web application which you use often. Makes life much simpler doesn't it? :) love this feature!

Chrome's new popup blocker is a brilliant innovation. Pop-ups are restricted to small minimized windows at the bottom of the tab which opens them. To open it all u have to do is drag it out of the window and the pop-up will be designated to their own window. |ScreenShot|

Another good thing about Google Chrome is that when you first install this browser you do not need to configure the whole browser to ur liking and you dont have to fret about losing all your bookmarks and browsing history. Chrome has the option of importing the set of Bookmarks, browsing history, saved passwords etc from Firfox or IE straight into Chrome. So in about 2 seconds your browser is all ready to run with all your personal settings incorporated in the new browser at the click of a few bottons! Now thats what you call common sense!

With all the good things Google has done with its browser its still not 100% bug free. The 1st 2 sites that i tried to open would refuse to open untill i refreshed the browser some 5-6 times. And in approx 18 hours of using Chrome i've come across this instance for a total of 5 times. But this small problem still does not outweigh the excellenc of this browser. It will take sometime for people to change from IE or Opera to Chrome as they get used to the idea of having a better option. But for Chrome to overtake Firefox would take even longer as Firefox has a range of plugins to attract people.

Congratulations Google on gifting the world a software of this quality and stability. The future of browsers is indeed here.

Now everything rests on how well Google markets its browser and ofcourse how far innovation goes.


Monday, September 1, 2008


99.999% of the human population think that life is all about money. Money, Money and more Money is their mantra. What they don't realise is that life is actually about experience. Its about experiencing things and feelings. You should do everything and go everywhere, this way u can experience the maximum things possible. and Experience is the only thing that the brain remembers for all time. Its leaves a foot print imprinted in you for ever.

Experience is what matters. Experience is what we live for. Go out and experience life not money.

Experience Is The Product
View SlideShare presentation or Upload your own.

Prisoner of Life!

Life is a Prison and I am the prisoner.

Everything has become very suffocating. The spontaneity in life and the freedom to do what you feel like just does not exist. I live not according to my standards, but i live according to standards other people set for me. I do what other people will like me to do. I expect from life what other people want in me.

All around me i see people having fun. All around me i see people who do what THEY want. They are the ones who ARE LIVING life, not I. I am here just to fulfill the responsibilities. I feel as if i HAVE to live life without a choice, when i should be feeling that I WANT to live life. I dont know why but i'm feeling claustrophobic, and the walls are now rushing in from all 4 sides!

Nobody else has any expectations other than their own to live upto. Here I have the whole world that is looking at me; microscopically analysing and judging, me and what i do. Its getting really difficult to take this any longer. I think one day i'll just explode into oblivion.

Sigh!! Peacefull Oblivion, where art thou!? 'Tis a long time since you have been due!


Will i ever?

Will i ever bell the cat?
Will i ever walk the earth round?
Will i ever fly free in the sky?
Will i ever grow into a larger being?
Will i ever find my dreams coming true?