Thursday, April 17, 2014

Self centrism - the biggest impediment to learning

Some of my friends do have pre-conceived notions against others ( including me ) as much as I am having against them and  others. Prejudice is a good device to reduce the complexity of life. By stereo typing people around,we can navigate territories by using some formulas. 

Every man will have some unique qualities which differentiates him from others. Some people might have bit more. The problem comes when you shift yourself to a new place where your (old) formulas are not relevant. This can be a new friend group, a company or a new community. All of a sudden,"expert" becomes a novice. He has to start from the scratch.

Self-Centric people refuse to adapt and try to benchmark themselves against the top dogs in the new environment against his or her own expertise in a particular area ( which is not at all relevant in the new milieu ). Rather than adapting to the environment, he is effectively trying to change the environment. That means,he is in for a practically impossible task. 

The root cause of self-centrism comes from being winners for a long time in a particular milieu. Winners who cannot re-invent themselves after a period of time or adapt to the changes around or come in terms with new environments which they are thrust into, often gets frustrated and becomes nihilistic in everything. They fail to see even the obvious.

Be a selfish man, but , Self centrism is dangerous!

A Poem on JavaScript!

There lived a hacker named Brendon
Worked for the NetScape, for a living
Worked on a Browser Named Navigator
His manger asked to Design a Language
That too, a Language for casual programmers
He choose Simplicity and Modernity
To be Simple,Typing became Dynamic
To be Modern,It has to have OOP thingy
OOP in dynamic means the Prototype
Prototype is Just a Dictionary
To reduce Objects to Key/Value
Function Ought to be a Value
To Make function a  Value,
Functional Constructs crept in
He resorted to borrow from Scheme
Scheme is a modern LISP
LISP is for Lot of Irritating and Silly Parenthesis
Thus JavaScript,became Ugly
Despite, having a good Anatomy!

PS:- If you understand this, think, otherwise study it!

"Murphy boy" and Mandakini

From the Year 1985 to 1989 , Mandakini (Yasmeen Joseph) was a sensation. Since her on screen chemistry with Mithun Chakraborty was superb,she was my favorite actress as well. At least, Dance Dance and Commando are two movies which I remember well.

Today, I saw a Facebook post remembering Clint, the whiz kid who has drawn more pictures than an average community will in his life time. Clint was a familiar name in my younger days. This reminded me of the "Murphy Boy", a boy which was picturized in the Murphy radio ad. In those days,KSRTC bus used to  ply with the Murphy radio ad on them. I did a search on the Internet.

Voila! The "Murphy boy" is Kagyur Tulku Rinpoche,an erstwhile Buddhist monk from Himachal ( probably from Dharamshala, a son of Tibetan refuge?)  and his wife is Mandakini. I did read about some Mandakini Gossip to revive my dormant memories of the past!

Synopsis of my talk @ Barcamp Kerala 15

Games,Psychology and Economics - Some anecdotes

Politics is intrinsic to  any group formed to achieve an objective. Most believe it is dirty and shy away from
meddling in intra group activities. Because of some subjective experiences and consant conflicts,the presenter did a "amateur" study of this subject. The prima facie conclusion of the on going study can be summarized as ,"Without intra group activties,no Group will survive". If you do not enjoy political conflicts/gossips/bickering , you will lead a "poor" life!

The examples include Gaming patterns and Biases/Fallacies which amplify the problems within any group. A
Philosophical framework for navigating political territories will be discussed as well.
For registration and information,go to the page here.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Robustness Principle - It is sensible for me

I just happened to come across an idiom which comes in the context of computing ( and seems to have applications in real life). The idiom is called "Robustness Principle"

According to wikipedia,

"In computing, the robustness principle is a general design guideline for software:

Be conservative in what you do, be liberal in what you accept from others (often reworded as "Be conservative in what you send, be liberal in what you accept").
The principle is also known as Postel's law, after Internet pioneer Jon Postel, who wrote in an early specification of the Transmission Control Protocol that:[1]

TCP implementations should follow a general principle of robustness: be conservative in what you do, be liberal in what you accept from others."

This principle was mentioned by one Mr. Ashley Thomas in a Facebook post. He was responding to the call for grammatical and spelling correctness while communicating in the English language.

As you age,you need to obey this law and be line-ant towards others. Be it in personal life or professional life. Especially, in intellectual matters.

The discussion on Facebook was about Sanjay (a friend) getting irritated by people using except in lieu of accept. Ashley Thomas wrote the following:

"Be conservative in what you say; Be liberal in what you except"

Change - Induce or deduce?

Our propensity to see the world in a synchronous manner is one of the root causes of most troubles we encounter as  human beings. The quest for finding cause/effect relationship between events and things dominate our instincts. Our belief system and mindset is result of the conformance or lack of it regarding things out there in the world.

The initial environment influence which a person inherits stay with she or he as human beings we require some kind of anchoring to revert to a stable state. To reduce the inertia involved in accepting change,one needs to take deliberate action ( block busting) or some kind of disruptive event has to happen which mandates a change in outlook.

We can disrupt our way of looking at things deductively and inductively. The inductive method is to change the environment we live in and deductive method is to read/think about new things.

What kind of change you prefer? Deductive or Inductive?

Translation to Malayalam

ലോകത്തെ ക്രമീകരിച്ചു കാണുവാൻ ഉള്ള ത്വര ആണ് മനുഷ്യന്റെ മിക്ക പ്രശ്നങ്ങളുടെയും  മൂല കാരണം. നമ്മുടെ ഉപഭോത മനസ്സ് എല്ലാപ്രതിഭാസങ്ങളിലും ഒരു കാരണവും അതിന്റെ പ്രഭാവവും  കാണാൻ ശ്രമിക്കാറുണ്ട്. നമ്മുടെ വിശ്വാസ പ്രമാണങ്ങളുടെ മൂല ഹേതു നമ്മൾ വിശ്വസിക്കു ന്നതത്വങ്ങളുടെ കാഴ്ചയോ അതിന്റെ അഭാവമോ ആണ് തിരുമാനിക്കുന്നത്

നമ്മൾ വളര്ന്നു വന്ന സാഹചര്യത്തിന്റെ പ്രഭാവം നമ്മളെ വിട്ടു പോകാൻ സാധിക്കാതത്തിനു കാരണം മനുഷ്യ മനസിന്‌ ഒരു നന്ഗൂരം അതിന്റെ സ്തിരതക്ക് വേണ്ടി നല്ലത് ആണ്. മാറ്റത്തിനുള്ള ജടത്വം കുറക്കുനതിനു വേണ്ടി പരിശ്രമം അല്ലെങ്കിൽ മാറുന്നതിനു നമ്മളെ നിർഭന്ദിക്കുന്ന എന്തെങ്കിലും കാര്യം ചുറ്റു  പാടും നടന്നാൽ നമ്മൾ നന്ഗൂരം വലിച്ചെറിയാൻ നിർഭന്ദിതം ആകും.

നമ്മുടെ വീക്ഷണം പ്രേരണ ( induction ) മൂലമോ നിഗമനം (deduction ) മൂലമോ നമ്മള്ക് തെറ്റിക്കാൻ സാധിക്കും. ആധ്യതെതതു നമ്മളുടെ ചുറ്റുപാടുകൾ മാറ്റിയാലോ  രണ്ടാമതെത് വായ്നയിലൂടെയോ ചിന്തയിലൂടെയോ മാറ്റാൻ സാധിക്കും

നിങ്ങൾ എങ്ങനത്തെ മാറ്റം ആണ് ആഗ്രഹിക്കുന്നത് ? പ്രേരണ ആണോ നിഗമനം ആണോ ?

A Truism about Economics!

"Modern Society is run on the basis of Justice to the Capital. If you or me are slaves to the Capital, people like Ambani/Buffet/BillG are hostages to it" - Praseed Pai, Circa 2014

I coined the phrase "Justice to the Capital" in the year 2011,sitting in the campus of Intel,Bangalore. The Justice is done to the capital, if it's expected rate of return is achieved. It does not care how it was achieved . It silently allows others to make money in it's quest to appreciate. As long as its goal is achieved, It will allow the status quo regarding  the people who handle it.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

What is "Copenhagen Technique" ?

Some time back, I happen to be part of a team ( in  a significant position ) which had gone to Copenhagen, the Capital City of the Denmark for a transition project. A huge team was assembled to go for this "expedition" to the City which Shakespeare remarked the following,

"Something is rotten in the State of Denmark"

It was a politically charged environment and none of the team members ( including me )  had not anticipated the level of resistance from incumbents. Incumbents comprise of people who were working in the Client's place for more than three years. They comprised Russians, Germans, Italians,Danes, Brits , Indians , Americans , Turks and Indians.

Politics dominated Technical considerations. People with good technical skills were axed by the incumbents and their managers, by projecting lesser mortals from our side as good ones!. Since the managers on our side only listened to what the managers on other side ( our managers were simply incapable of judging the semantics, as they did not have clue about the ground reality )  say, casualties were huge. In some cases,people with political exposure were axed by the internal bickering. I know at least, five cases in this category in a span of two months.

At the end of six months, "Bits and Pieces" professionals with below average competence were the only ones who survive there.  Their strategy was simple:

Go to the office and try to focus on the tasks without asking any questions to the Client representatives or incumbents. Try to do something which they can do and finish the day off. Pray that no escalation come and hope that a fellow is edged out by the client (to divert focus from them ) to please own managers. Incompetence was one hallmark which we require. Some people deliberately acted as if they are ignorant!

In the City of Copenhagen,you need to have a "hand to mouth existence" mindset or daily meal goal. If you managed to survive the day, hope that next day will also be same. Do no try to improve the situation and vie for status quo. If you have got  ignorance or put up a facade ( deliberate ignorance ),you will survive. This is called Copenhagen Technique

"Evaluation vs Judgement" - of Technical People

Most often,I tend to evaluate Technical People in a context free manner. That essentially means,speculating about his skill based on Analytical Thinking,Systems Thinking,Lingo,Explicit/Tacit knowledge ( subjective!),Mathematical sophistication etc. Hallmark of a good technical person is how much he is able to "de-environmentalise" his subjective experience and put it across the crux of the activities in  Industry standard Lingo.

Your ability to evaluate a person is always limited as lot of variables are involved in the Interaction. Humans generally are not good at signalling and our ability to evaluate a person is hampered by the cognitive challenges faced by us because of the ignorance about the Subject Matter Area of the other person in question.

We can only judge a person based on the facts available before us. Evaluation of a person is always impossible act. In other words, we cannot evaluate objective truth,only Judge it  based on partial evaluation.

In Software Services Industry, people are evaluated based on the level of pressure they can handle and their ability to work with partial/imprecise information. A person who is fit in the Software Services Industry might be huge mis-fit in a product engineering milieu where Cognitive Closure ( near perfect information ) is necessary. I do have a bias for Product Engineering and Application Services segment as I have spent more time there.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Next Barcamp Kerala (Edition 15) is here !

The next  edition of  Barcamp Kerala will be held on 27th April, 2014 at the Amrita Instituite of Engineering @ Amritapuri/Kollam. This will be the 15th edition of the Barcamp Kerala Event.

According to Wiki page on Barcamp

"BarCamp is an international network of user-generated unconferences primarily focused around technology and the web. They are open, participatory workshop-events, the content of which is provided by participants."

Since I have attended at least nine Barcamps ( including Barcamp Kerala ),I have got good memories of the information I have got, fun I have had and people I have met at the Barcamp. Since the crowd is a mixture of technology enthusiasts, entrepreneurs and social media activists,I make it a point to attend the Event, If I am around.

The Registration can be done here. Do Participate for fun and profit! I will be definitely going 

Why Truth will always be subjective?

In the month of February 2014,I was given slot in the last minute to take a presentation in an Event. In fact, I got the slot on the day before the event. It was necessitated by the absence of two speakers from the Event. I was given the slot between 3.00 pm to 3.45 pm.  This was the case until 11.00 am on the previous day, when I last checked my mail.

For personal reasons, I had to travel to Alapuzha and returned to Aluva only the next day. I did not check my mail or logged into the Net. A friend of mine and I reached the venue at Infopark, Kakkanad around 9.30 am on the day of the event. I did  notice there are some changes in the slots, my notion was people were trading their slot and my slot was still the same. No one told me or I did not check the event site despite having internet access. .

After the lunch, the previous presenter took some  extra time and the next presentation was around 3.15 pm. Around 3.10 pm, I stood up on the side to get into the podium. At that time, an organizer who is not in good terms with me was inviting another speaker. When the incumbent finished his speech, I entered the dais and attached my laptop. Then,the announcer announced my name.

In the next thirty five minutes, the organizer came to the stage and handed over notes two times and was using gestures whose meaning is only known to him. Some people did notice the strange behavior.

After the presentation, the organizer accused me that I stole someone else's slot. An argument of sort ensued which gave unpleasant experiences to the people outside. Out of anger to have given me the slot,this particular organizer shoved the slots. Since there was dependency on him (others had to budge),my presentation was moved to the last slot (4.45-5.30 pm ). It happened after I assessed the internet last time.

Both were speaking the truth. He feels I am unfair because, I stole the slot allocated to another one. I felt strongly because why should someone be pissed off with me for not trading my slot of 3.00 pm to 3.45 pm. I did not know the change of slots and he thought I knew it. 

In the end, I had to convince the friends that I was not being unfair to anyone as I was not aware of the slot change. Luckily, another friend of mine was with me all along. He explained the situation to others. Still not looking convinced , I had to make the following remark

"If someone tried to change my slot without getting permission from me, I would have re-acted then and there itself in the mail chain. Why should I come and "steal" the slot? If I can steal the slot,I would have been able to hold on to the slot allocated to me."

Finally, I had to sent a mail thread to my friends  to convince them that I took the presentation at a slot allocated to me ( based on the facts which I am aware of ). The status was valid till 21 hours before the start of meeting.

Truth becomes subjective because one can judge truth only based on the facts which we are aware of. Sinc e there is variation in the number of memes we "inhale" from the environment,Truth will always be subjective. Truth is not a question of morality, one of pragmatic consequences. Try to adhere to truth to the extent possible based on the fact base. If you could not judge  it properly,do not have remorse.

"Truth is always Subjective. Only possibility is to reduce Subjectivity Index!"

 Objectivity_Index = 1- Subjectivity_Index;

Even God has not found out of formula for Subjectivity_Index; we can approximate it, but bounded rationality is a constraint. If you can understand this,you already know what I have written.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Nice "Horror" and a proud dad...

ഇന്നലെ രാവിലെ ഞാൻ നോകുമ്പോൾ എന്റെ മകൻ ടാബ്ലെറ്റ് (iPad which I purchased recently )  ഉപയോഗിച്ച് എന്തോ കുതികുരികുന്നത് കണ്ടപ്പോൾ ഞാൻ അവന്റെ അടുത്ത് പോയി

ഞാൻ :- എന്തആണ് ചെയുന്നത് ?
മകൻ :- ഞാൻ ഒരു കഥ എഴുതുകയാണ് !
ഞാൻ :- എന്തോന്ന് കദയാനെഡ ?
മകൻ :- ഇത് ഒരു ഹോറർ സ്റ്റോറി ആണ്.അപ്പാ ഞാൻ തന്നെ ഇത് വായിച് പേടിച്ചിരിക്കുകയാണ്
ഞാൻ :- !!!!!!! .... ഹ്മ്മ്....ഹ..ഹ..ഹ..

ഇത് ഞാൻ എന്റെ ഭാര്യയോട്‌ പറഞ്ഞപ്പോൾ അവൾ പറഞ്ഞത്

ഭാര്യ :- നമ്മുടെ മകൻ മൂന്  പാരഗ്രഫ് തികച്ചു എഴുതുന്നത്‌ ഇ പ്പോഴായിരിക്കും. പോയി വേറെ വല്ലതും നോക്ക്

ഞാൻ :- ????.......

Saturday, April 12, 2014

An interesting reply

ഞാൻ :-  എവിടെ ആണ് വീട് ?
അയാള് :- എന്റെ വീട് നീലേശ്വരത്ത് ആണ്.
ഞാൻ:- അത് കാവ്യാ മാധവന്റെ സ്ഥലം ആണല്ലോ!
അയാള് :- അത് എന്റെയും സ്ഥലം ആണ് കേട്ടോ

എന്റെ സുഹൃത്ത്‌ :- ഹ ഹ ഹ ഹ

This happened when I was driving from XIME ( near Startup Village ) to HMT Jn. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

A quote about JavaScript and a Presentation @

"JavaScript was an attempt to create a Modern Programming Language for non-programmers to manipulate transient data (on the fly). All features of the language are just consequences of that ...
Just consequences of that!"
                    - Praseed Pai,April 1, 2014

I know lot of people who feels modern java script is some kind of sorcery where people (ab)use language features to show their ability to deal with cryptic code. The curly braces, closures, currying, prototypes, function as values etc. are used in a manner which evades comprehension. Or in other words,people forget the importance of reading code!

Obviously, lot of programmers might have thought Brendon Eich is an "owner" of a convoluted soul which created a language which aids programmers in creating mindless , purposeless , spaghetti code. Since the language originated as an embedded language,primary purpose of the language was to manipulate W3C DOM tree.

People often confuse messenger with the message. Obviously, DOM stigma got attached to the language and "neglect" of the language was  a consequence of that. This led to the origin of the famous "CPT" Programming model. CPT stands for Copy,Paste and Tweak model of Java Script development.

The presentation of mine is an attempt to re-walk the mindset of the creator of the language to add humongous amount of feature into the language. It is was a consequence of  an attempt to create a Modern language for the masses.

The site for the event can be retrieved from here.