Archive | August, 2012

Smart City : Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA.

23 Aug

I have been recently interested in this “smart” concept; smart buildings, smart cities, smart grid, etc.  One case study that always is quoted and stands out is Chattanooga.

Chattanooga has the fastest broadband network in the United States, built by the power utility company EPB as part of a project conceived originally to implement Smart Grid and Smart Metering into every home.   Chattanooga became America’s first and only city to complete a community-wide network capable of delivering up to 1G bps Internet speeds to every home and business in EPB’s 600-square-mile service area.  Chattanooga’s fiber-optic network has lead to the development of a high-speed Internet-connected management and control system, which controls capabilities such as IP surveillance cameras, street-light power management and a city-wide symmetrical WiFi grid.

I am truly impressed.  Read more here.



Rahul Dravid … by Vedam Jayashankar

22 Aug

Since Rahul Dravid has recently retired it is a good moment to salute his genius and more importantly his public image.  It cannot get better than this … hats off we are all proud of you.

Now coming to the book review – The book is a fairly easy read with simple language and the pages fly.  However, the book fails to weave a match in front of the readers eyes.  I would rate the book extremely readable but not a must-read.

Some of my favourite parts of the book –

* Sanjay Manjrekar (I presume 😉 ) has been mentioned directly and covertly at many places … and ohhh boy I liked it.  ” … there were biased elements in the media who wrote nasty things about him.  There was a television commentator who probably believed that Rahul edged him out of the Indian team and hence struggled to say anything good about him … ”

* Rahul would catch the early morning BTS bus from Indiranagar to KSCA and work in the nets from 6:15am till 9am.  He would then change into school uniform on the deserted stairs of the Western Stand, for in those days there was no changing room facility in the outside practice ground.  He would wolf down the breakfast he has brought from home on the same stairs and then, with cricket kit and school bag thrown over his shoulders, he would run the couple of kilometers to school.  Armed with his favourite fruit, apple, which he would devour while jogging to school, Rahul would reach late; at times a couple of hours would have lapsed.  Further he would skip the last period of the day to attend nets in the evening and would once again go home in a crowded BTS”

* Also there is a mention of how he would have different friends for play (i.e., cricket) and for work (i.e., exams).  Though this fact does not cast a good light on him … defines how he could be successful in both academics and sports.

* A quote from Dravid himself “… the problem would be keeping to Sri (J. Srinath).  He gets tremendous movement off the seam, even with the new ball.  The problem is that most of the time the tilt is into the right-hand batsman – the unnatural side for me as wicket-keeper.  And the angle of the ball keeps passing the batsman, keeps going away on the leg side.  This at his genuine pace, would not only test the wicketkeeper, but end up bruising the fingers of his left hand, i.e., the right-hand batsman’s top hand.  Unless a wicket-keeper can collect Sri’s delivery cleanly all the time, he would end up with broken or bruised fingers…”

* A quote from TE Srinivasan “… Kiri was mad or absolutely brilliant to stand upto Chandra …”

* The origins of the Dravid name is very interesting; and also the side note of Iyers in Tamilnadu are not considered Dravidians in the first place 😉

Some nit picking –

* Eulogizing of Pushpa Dravid.  I am sure that Rahul and all the Dravid’s are very proud of Mrs.Pushpa.  Mrs.Pushpa is successful and all the accolades and respect are well deserved.  However, the extempore used to describe her in a book meant for her son seems out of place.  I would rather have liked to know how she influenced her son rather than how she became successful.  The detail of her struggle and achievements belongs to a biography of her own.

* More attention should be paid to spell check – Thimmappiah has been spelt as  Thimmappaih 😦 South Indian names are not to be spelt in any which way.   However this may be a mistake of the proof readers and not the author.


Profile of Rahul Dravid.

Hutch Vodafone IT – all dirty

22 Aug

A very very good commentary on the existing governance in India specifically regarding the Hutch-Vodafone IT dealings.  “… the manner in which sections of our government has been keen on helping these two companies, one wonders whether it is a wholly owned subsidiary of Hutch-Vodafone.”

When crony capitalism flourishes, investor sentiment is bound to take a hit, writes M R Venkatesh @ Rediff.


All copyrights respected.

The Associate by John Grisham

21 Aug

There are companies at war; war in the courtroom that is.  The deep pockets hire the best lawyers and spies.  Industrial espionage by siphoning information from where ever possible is the motto.

One of the methods is to screen all the people working at the opponents law firm and find somebody who has a past that is best kept a secret.  Enter blackmail and get information by threatening to go public with the shaming details of the victims past deeds.

Kyle McAvoy, the brilliant Yale Law Student, is forced to accept a position in a prestigious law firm by his blackmailers who know what he did as a callow youth in the distant past.  The objective is to steal information from the firm and provide it to his “handler”.  Kyle knows that stealing of confidential and privileged information is only the beginning and such acts set him up for getting debarred and sacked but also for further blackmail.  He know he is staring at a horrible future as an asset wherein he is damned if he does and damned if he doesnt.  Does Kyle manage to hold onto his profession, ethics, marbles?  Does he get sucked in by the blackmailers or does he manage to beat them at their own game?  Read the book for the twists and turns.  However the ending is lame 😦 but the journey is worthwhile.  Good paperback read o a lazy weekend or during travel.  Recommended.

The Devil Wears Prada

15 Aug

This book has been written in a very readable style.  But I wonder why this made it to the best sellers list for such a long time.  [spoiler alert] It is a book about a girl taking up a job with a hope that this job will be the key to future success.  The job doesn’t turn out to be what she expected – rather it turns out to be a lot of things that rob her of her life and outright demeaning at times.  She finally gathers the courage to quit – without actually having another job.

This may be every employees dream – quitting on the boss after showing the middle finger; however it is not a good action for anybody.  Having source of income is very important as long as one has a hollow called stomach …

Good fairy tale though …………

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