Doggy times for Bolshoi The Boxer

Bulldog

My dog, Bolshoi the Boxer, is not feeling too well.

“Kindly call the veterinarian. I am not at all having a great day. In fact, I am as sick as a dog.” says Bolshoi.

“You are a dog. You cannot be as sick as a cat.” Bolshoi is known to be a hypochondriac.

“But I am really sick. I am feeling listless and my appetite is non-existent.”

“It has been a dog’s age since you’ve really been ill. And the last time you were at the vet’s , it was because you ate my slipper.” I reply.

“Why is that you fail to dog it every time I am unwell? Do you want me to go to the dogs?” Bolshoi is petulant.

“You can’t go to the dogs. The other dogs don’t like your hangdog attitude.” I sarcastically comment.

“Can you blame me? It’s a dog’s life having you as my owner.”

“Bolshoi, every time you tell me you’re sick it turns out to be another shaggy dog story. And you’re not even an English sheepdog.” I recognise that this is going to be a long drawn-out tale.

“You’d better hurry because if it’s something serious I will not have a dog’s chance of surviving.” Bolshoi is now hyper-ventilating or doing a pretty good imitation of it.

“BB, stop dogging my footsteps. Let me see if the vet is available. If that’s what you really want.” I am fed-up.

“I don’t think I can walk to the doctor’s. You will have to carry me.”

“That’s fine. I’ll stop by the vet’s and see if he can do a house visit.”

I make my exit, muttering something about seeing a man about a dog.

Quote of the day:
I have such poor vision I can date anybody. – Garry Shandling

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Of Indian diplomats, pat-downs and turbans

The huge stink raised by the Indian press , the TV channels and the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) regarding the pat-down of Indian diplomats, Meera Shankar and Hardeep Puri, has not abated.

However, it has me wondering about the many ordinary passengers and travellers of Indian or South Asian descent who are subjected to similar humiliation and who silently and stoically bear it simply because they do not know whom to complain to and how to make their voices heard.

I admit to a stab of vicarious delight that our representatives are unwittingly made aware of the ground realities.

Am I alone in feeling this way?

Quote of the day:
If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail. – Abraham Maslow

Wikileaks or “Cablegate”: Thoughts in perspective

The latest Wikileaks or CableGate  revelations have left very few parts of the globe untouched.

The sheer volume of the dispatches leaked (made by American diplomats and members of their diplomatic corps) makes comment inevitable and at the same time nigh impossible.

The media storm raised here in India is about how the US has heaped scorn on India’s preparedness for launching a quick assault on Pakistan. The code-named “Cold Start” policy is a non-starter according to the (ugly) American.

I do not wish to comment on what India’s response should be.

What I would like to suggest is that we should be rational ,reasoned and measured in our approach to the stories that have surfaced and will surface over the next few days. If Wikileaks believe that their only motive was transparency, then they have to be disabused of that notion. This attempt of theirs smacks of bravado, fool-hardiness and an attempt to prove their credibility by discrediting their opponents. Yes, for some reason, America-bashing appears to be their favourite pastime. Not that it hasn’t been so everywhere else, but then that’s the kind of knee-jerk reaction Big Brother evokes.

India should not be unaware of this; whether we like it or not, we are a regional Big Brother to our South Asian neighbours. A lovable, cuddly one we would like to believe but to be truthful, there is no such thing in international politics.

Wikileaks  can be useful to provoke thought , more significantly thought translated into action. But everything should be taken with a pinch of salt!

We should be aware that cables by their nature are reactionary and informal. They are not reports air-brushed and put before one’s superiors after thorough analysis and fact-checking. They are spur-of-the-moment, coloured,shaped and hued by personalities, quirks and proximity  to significant events and persons. It is easy to be overwhelmed by calamity or catastrophe, even personal ones. No person is immune to being human.Would you like your private opinions and thoughts broadcast to members of the general public? How do you think that will make you appear?

Would you rather have the Americans and others (including India) rely on satellites and technology alone for intelligence gathering?

“A diplomat is a person who lies abroad for his country”. This statement makes no mention of lying to one’s nation, does it?

My life is my message.

Mahatma Gandhi

Source: http://quotes4all.net/quote_1181.html

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Web-services, SOA, BPM & Cloud Computing – XI

Business Process Reengineering Cycle

Image via Wikipedia

The term Business Process Management (BPM) has been buzzing around for quite a while.

What exactly is BPM?

Is it solely about technology?

Or is it more than that?

Yes, BPM is in vogue because the technology to model processes, simulate them, improve them, and maybe even improvise is available in a huge way.

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The smoking Bacchan ‘bahu’: Aishwarya Rai

Aishwarya Rai at the Cannes film festival

Image via Wikipedia

Aishwarya Rai is smoking!

Literally so!

The Guzaarish posters on BEST buses have drawn the ire of the Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS).

The pictures depicting a puffing Rai “send a wrong message to society and should be withdrawn immediately” says Avinash Abhyankar , president of the MNS BEST workers’ union.

If the MNS are railing against any endorsement of smoking in general , then maybe they have a point.

But if they are particularly against women smoking or waging a vendetta against the Bacchan ‘parivar’, then their protestations should not cut any ice with the general public and should be seen as yet another attempt to hog the limelight.

“Smoking is injurious to health and can cause carcinogenic diseases” should be on the agenda of every political party.

Does anybody know what has happened about the ban on smoking in public places? Are there any statistics about the sums collected in fines? Is that law just on paper? Has it ever been enforced?

Just a thought!

LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 16: (EDITORS NOTE: Image has been converted to black and white. Colour version available) Aishwarya Rai arrives at the World Premiere of 'Raavan' at the BFI Southbank on June 16, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Quote of the day:
Computers make it easier to do a lot of things, but most of the things they make it easier to do don’t need to be done. – Andy Rooney

The Censoring of “Big Boss”: Rakhi Sawant, nobody’s sister!

Censorship in Indian television broadcasting is back and how!

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry has decided to unveil its Puritan ways.

Big Boss IV of Colors fame has been relegated to the 11 pm to 5 am slot.

It seems Rakhi Sawant’s “vulgar language” on her show “Rakhi Ka Insaaf”  too has dissuaded the powers-that-be from considering her as a nice sister who will knot ‘rakhis’ on their heavy hands.

I haven’t actually caught any episodes of either reality shows (not that I had earlier!). Last night’s “Bossy” affair had giant muscle-bound Khali playing bully-boy but wonder of wonders, the bullied weren’t intimidated! In the background, the ‘bleep, bleep’ of censored language conveyed the heated state of the participants.

Throw in a few strangers with giant egos in an artificial pressure-cooker environment ,forced participation and deliberate aggravation ;the producers believed that it would provide mass entertainment.

Come on! Give me and our much-maligned audiences a break! Once the novelty wore out, the participants were soon exposed to be the 15-minutes-of-fame seeking mini-celebrities they were.

Do we really wish to ape the West  in everything we do? Not all American shows translate well and Big Boss—based on Big Brother— is one of them.

The shifting of Big Boss to the wee hours of the night is probably the best thing to happen to Indian television in recent times. Do we really wish to suffer through foul language—bleeped out as it may be— and non-acting on prime time? I think not! Give me fiction any time! Need I harp on this?

You can’t shake hands with a clenched fist.

Mahatma Gandhi

Source: http://quotes4all.net/quote_1066.html

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COBIT and IT Governance – A Brief

IT governance is the responsibility of executives and the board of directors, and consists of the leadership, organisational
structures and processes that ensure that the enterprise’s IT sustains and extends the organisation’s strategies and
objectives.

Organisations should satisfy the quality, fiduciary and security requirements for their information, as for all assets.

Control Objectives for Information and related Technology (COBIT®) provides good practices across a domain and process
framework and presents activities in a manageable and logical structure. COBIT’s good practices represent the consensus of experts.
They are strongly focused more on control, less on execution. These practices will help optimise IT-enabled investments, ensure
service delivery and provide a measure against which to judge when things do go wrong.

Continue reading

Ratan Tata’s civil aviation disclosure shocks none!

This is a portrait of Mr.Ratan Naval Tata made...

Image via Wikipedia

The ‘stunning’ revelation by Ratan Tata that he was asked to give a Rs. 15 crore bribe when he wanted to launch Tata’s own domestic airlines should come as no surprise to the citizens of India. When you bribe the odd traffic policeman and pay a small fee to ensure that you receive your driving license without any glitches, why should you expect probity from the top ministers and officials?

India rank a lowly 87 on the Corruption Perceptions Index published by Transparency International.

So is Ratan Tata’s disclosure really a huge shock?

When does it stop? Where does it stop?

Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent.

Isaac Asimov

Source: http://quotes4all.net/quote_1491.html

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The Boy Who Never Grew Up!

Friends

Image via Wikipedia

Once upon a time there was a boy. He had a lot of friends and a lot of toys.

He never wanted for anything. Life was a breeze. It was full of fun and joy.

Play and school came alike. Parties and games was all he worried about, it was all he thought of.

Then suddenly one day everything changed.

He found that the friends he once had and liked now avoided him.

He found that the toys he had never gave him the kind of joy he used to derive earlier.

The games felt a little jaded; he grew morose.

He could not figure out what had changed.

Why this sudden about turn? What had happened?

Had the world turned topsy-turvy?

Then he heard a voice whisper in his ear:

“No, the world has not changed. Your friends have. They have grown up. They now have their own toys and new friends. They don’t need to play with all your toys anymore. Besides, you were always rude to them and your abrasiveness has not disappeared. You remain a boy; they are now men and women. That is the reality of life; the world doesn’t change, people do, their perspectives do, their lives do.”

And the lad thought “I guess I’m the boy who never grew up!”

PS: Originality of this piece is not guaranteed!

It’s better to be wanted for murder than not to be wanted at all.

Marty Winch

Source: http://quotes4all.net/quote_726.html

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Certification Bazaar: The Ugly Side

The certification bazaar has  taken off in the Indian IT industry. Courses range from PMI’s PMP, OGC’s PRINCE2 and ITIL, COBIT, TOGAF and BPM.

Purveyors of these courses charge you an arm and a leg; certification and their maintenance will in all probability cost you another arm and a leg.Do you wish to put down that kind of money with the possibility of little or no returns on your investment?

Horror stories of how folks are certified but have no opportunity to practise abound, but at least in some cases, employers are willing to foot the bill to retain the certified hordes. Yet others do not have the said luxury. Would you re-certify yourself if you had to pay from your own pocket?

Marketing emails  sniff out an inkling of a need or a requirement. The tactics could be termed innovative or (if you wish to be critical) , they  smack of desperation.

Courses and their faculty seem to be  disjoint and disparate from the industry and reality.

It’s a chicken and egg situation. Should you  certify and then gain experience on the same? Or gain experience first and then have yourself certified?

What do you think?

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The other bugbear in the Indian IT industry is not sexism, as you would like to believe, but ageism.

Lack of seasoned professionals in the industry and pre-dominance of young professionals is the cause of this malaise.

Churlish behaviour of the young ‘uns only reinforces the impression.

Just another ugly facet of the celebrated success story.

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Quote of the day:
Whatever you do will be insignificant, but it is very important that you do it. – Mahatma Gandhi