Tuesday, August 29, 2006

I can smell some good coffee at last

Starbucks plans to open outlets in India in early 2007. First ones in Delhi and Mumbai. I bet they will be in Namma Bengaluru in no time !. Some good coffee at last, but I do hope they slash their prices a bit for the Indian market.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Not another Independence day...

Fortunately or not, I have been working for the IT industry in Bangalore, for around four years now. And so have been thousands of graduates in this city. All get sky level salaries as soon as they step inside an IT company. Most people, work day and night to develop software for multi million dollar firms outside India, to make them do better business. A good number of IT guys are just focused on how to get better salaries by changing jobs and taking advantage of the market conditions. There are some , who wish to work either in the US or UK, and are waiting for a chance, that somehow one day, the project they are working on might get them there.

Since these are a well educated lot, they do understand a lot of issues that our very own country is facing. And some times these are brought up, in some of the lounge bar outings, where the alcohol consumed per hour is billed to their foreign clients. There are passionate people, with whom you can engage in a great conversation even when drunk, whether it be corruption in real estate, or bad roads in Bangalore, or even illiteracy or alternative sources of energy. Everyone wants to do something, but have reasons for which they cant, and once the party is over, the next day everyone is back to their daily routine.

Some people say, they want to earn enough first, so that later they can leave the job and do some social work. But little do they realize, that with their monthly salaries, that day will never come. Some of my friends go to orphanages and help the kids , by paying their school fees , vaccination, books etc (I respect them , since I have not even attempted that) ,but is that enough. ? I think , we can do a lot more. When have we thought of writing software , for some of the needy institutions in India, who cannot afford it. When have we thought that the old Pentium PCs that our company IS dept. throws away can be used by some small schools to teach the kids. Why can’t we take time off on a Sat, and teach free of cost (anything, even programming languages) for people who cannot even think of affording it.

Many in our IT world, would just write blogs like me, but thankfully a few like Rohit, will take some great steps towards making a better country. Yes, we are part of the ‘Rang De Basanti’ generation and we need to wake up ! Happy Independence Day !

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Some cool lines

From the Tamil movie ShahJahan - song "Meliname.."

"Bhagawaan pesuvadum illai, Bhaktium koraivadhum illai...
Yen Kaadhalium pesavum illai, Yen Kaadhal koraivadhum illai... "

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Read Joel on Software...

Since I had read a lot of books around programming and software management practices I never read Joel On Software seriously. I happened to read a lot of old articles by Joel (since 2001) recently. Each and every article taught me something new in software project management or programing in general. I actually grabbed the book that compiles all the articles., so I can read them offline. Highly recommened for any software developer, even if you have read the Mythical man month, the code complete and the pragmatic programmer series .

All articles are available at the site - > www.joelonsoftware.com

Tamil songs on Sun Music...

I leave the television tuned to "Sun Music" and do other work, and they do a good job of playing really good requests. Except for some of their irritating VJ talk, the music is nice. The best part for me is that, they will surely play an Asin or Simran song video every hour ! ;;-)

"Away days" from work should stick to that

Most companies have the concept of "Away days" . Many call it company retreat, office outing, picnics etc... I have no idea why but, the management of an organization always thinks of coupling this with some great speeches from the CEO on that day, or discussions on financials, or the company's latest products. Even if these "M" creatures know that everyother person will pass sarcastic/witty/humorous comments abou these sessions in the nearest restroom or smoking area, they will still continue to organize such things. Maybe, since they spend some money, they feel some "gyan" should be imparted from their side in a dilbert style even if not a soul wants to listen.

I say that you get the real money's worth if you can get everyone (Even the "M" types) in high spirits, with booze, cricket, football, dance whatever. An Away day should just mean fun,Fun,FUN and nothing else! It never solves any purpose otherwise !

And you thought that enterprise software is boring ?

Martin puts it in the true spirit

"I've often heard it said that enterprise software is boring, just shuffling data around, that people of talent will do "real" software that requires fancy algorithms, hardware hacks, or plenty of math. I feel that this usually happens due to a lack of customer affinity. The real intellectual challenge of business software is figuring out what the real contribution of software can be to a business. You need both good technical and business knowledge to find that. Working closely with business people to develop this knowledge, and PleasingTheCustomer as you do it, is what makes enterprise software development fun - and motivation is the key to good and productive work. "

http://www.martinfowler.com/bliki/CustomerAffinity.html


Are you still in your comfy shell ?

I start feeling very comfortable when my life is "routined". By that what I mean is if everyday morning I just get up and pick up my bike and go to office, write some code for the project I work for, and come back after dinner. Simple life, but it confines me to a certain shell. And that shell takes me away from a lot of good things. For example, in my case, if I go in my bike everyday, which I know how to drive pretty well, I never will learn driving any other vehicle. Also I would never know about the latest public transport in the city and their rates ( yeah the volvo buses) .

I am not saying you should take some "violin" classes, which if you do out of interest will be great. But what I mean is try and keep breaking out of your repetitive cycle in life. another example might be the kind of websites you read everyday morning. If you read rediff.com , regularly, read slashdot.org sometimes. If you are a programmer and read all about .net, try reading Zen and the Art of motorcycle management and for a change understanding it ;-) .
If you read timesofindia, read the washington post or , The Economist to get an idea of whats happening in world economy.

You can start doing this very very easily. The motivation behind this should be that, if you are stuck to something comfortably, you are missing out on a lot the world has to offer. And of course you have one life and you need to make most of it !