Category: Miscellaneous

Another test post, from the WordPress editor. Things look absolutely fine from here. They aren’t wrong.

Why does it matter how they look on the inside? Will I ever want to look there? Possibly not. Then why does it matter? Why can’t I use this as my editor of choice?

Rethinking stuff…

It is a different sort of day today. Things are very different. I mean what’s with the lonliness within? It needn’t be this way, but this can’t be helped I guess. Anyway.

I am also very much reconsider the way I publish. Am back to thinking the “no-editor” interface is blot is not something I really find attractive at times. Everything is good. But a lack of a nice interface to write and publish does make me look out for alternatives. And WordPress always comes first – mainly due to the web app.

I also looked at Ghost again. This line in its comparison to WordPress left be curios.

If you’re looking for a platform that increasingly attempts to do everything and don’t mind cutting through the noise to make it work for your publishing needs, then WordPress might be suitable for you.

– Ghost vs WordPress

Is that a positive or negative? Plus according to Ghost, WordPress costs “average managed hosting starts at $115/mo”. That sounds too high. Don’t WordPress plans start from $5/mo?

Anyway, I will continue to explore stuff. Time for change again, maybe?

Another benefit is edit-on-the-go. Fixing issues with post is so much simpler with WordPress. Not with anything else.

The edit on the go is especially more powerful on desktop! I mean it opens up the editor and you can just add the text. It indeed is very powerful option. The editor is one reason I want to really consider WordPress — even if I have to pay for it. I haven’t finalized it yet though. The biggest deterrent for me is the lack of easy way to add IndieWeb support. I am yet sure if I can live without these — mainly webmentions and syndication.

Stories are written so that mind stays free to wove some more stories. It works more often than not — and so needs to be done more often than not.

End of journey

I would no longer be posting on this weblog going ahead. I have finally managed to own my presence on web completely, again. I knew this was a placeholder for my thoughts till I put together a planned-to-be-permanent place which could be controlled by me. I managed to get that done finally, read my views here.

I have already started writing at the new portal which I have simply named as {amit gawande} as finally that is what it is going to be, a portal just about me. If you have liked my writing, I assure you, you will continue to like it going ahead too. Subscribe to the new rss feed.

Remembering names..

Another introduction where I am involved, as in I listen, happened today. These introductions haunt me, always. Names are exchanged and so is the purpose for visit and some pleasantries. We talk, we laugh, we share. Then the meeting, or the visit, ends. Everything is well and good. That is until we meet the next time. The other person smiles, starts talking. And all I am thinking, of course with a smile on my face, is what the bloody hell is your name again!? As it turns out, the last time we met, it was the name part that I conveniently side-stepped while registering the introduction in memory.

And this occurs with me way too often. Initial interaction happens with the introduction, then I forget the name. At first I just don’t take the trouble to know the name thinking may be we just won’t meet that often after all.  But the interaction continues. It increases often; we meet more. We talk more. We become acquaintances. We are on the verge of becoming friends. And all I am still thinking of is how the hell should I get this person mouth his name again. Asking for name is absolutely not an option now because I am already in a friend or a known person zone. The bridge has been crossed. So all I do is wait for him or some one else speak the said person’s name.

And I do realize this is a very assholistic behavior on my part. So this time I decide this behavior of mine has to end. And I query the web. You know what, this is way too common a phenomenon. So common that there are zillions of “n ways to remember names” self-helf articles across the web. Ways suggested stretch from plain childish to utter foolish.

For example, break the name into parts and remember the parts. Yeah.. a fool-proof way. Only if I could remember to break the name first and remember the parts next. Or associate the name with something. So if you are Ramesh, I will remember you as mesh. What bull crap. How awkward would it be to think of the made association every time you meet, say Vikas or Hardik. Nope. Not gonna work. Or make the name dance in front of eyes. Or what not. Complete non-sense.

Only thing that made sense to me was to speak the name out aloud. More times, the better. Well that is one thing I can do. That is one thing I am going to do rather. So next time you meet me and introduce yourself, please bear with me if I go on chanting your name in every statement that follows. And so will I if I see you doing the same.

Book Review: Inferno

Inferno (Robert Langdon, #4)Inferno by Dan Brown
Going in to the chapter 1 of Inferno, I didn’t have too high expectations. I was looking for a breezy page-turner with some anecdotes on sculptures, people, places intermingled with the story. However I was disappointed to see Dan Brown fail to deliver even that.

Anecdotes are way too many and completely irrelevant to the story. Many a times, the novel reads as Brown’s travelogue of places during his research, just there to increase the page count. I remember ignoring many paragraphs describing some sculpture or a building or a painting. Uninteresting. Plain boring. Do research Mr. Brown; just don’t force everything into a novel.

And there are so many discernible and ludicrous attempts at being relevant to the current tech-aware audience. All the references to iPads, iPhones, ebooks etc. fall flat, cringeworthy.

Finally to the story, what is expected is a mystery to be solved by Professor Langdon through the clues sprinkled in historic symbols. I feel the novel fails there too. Codes and clues are way too simple, straight-forward. Many don’t even lead something significant; they are just there to bring Langdon in picture. Inferno could well have been a sci-fi mystery novel instead of a Robert Langdon one. Disappointed.

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

View all my reviews

Speechless…

Another rainfall, another stroll to the cafeteria, another shot of similar feelings. Just couldn’t help but dig out this old post and repost.

Speechless …. That’s how today’s incident caught me. Really felt am i missing something? Am i really enjoying my life? Corporate world has indeed made me dry. Juiceless. Deprived of whatever fun element I had in my life. Saw the wet earth today and there loomed the childhood days in front of me.

Those hours I spent sitting on a sofa employing my eyes out at rain beaten roads. “Chai-Bhajji” or “Pohe” that i relished. Slightest sound of a rain drop that made me run towards the porch. Spellbound eyes of mine that tried to gulp up a sight of lush green fields. An enchanting effect that even a midget breeze created. The restlessness that a sight of river or even a small stream gave me. The dew-laden grass plates that endorsed the mesmerizing capacity of the nature. “Aai” who always dabbed me forcefully in the sweater and monkey-cap. Soothing effect that the cooler-chilled room created after returning from burning heat. Glasses of Rasna i gobbled. Waits for the “Chachaji-Sabu-Raka” Combo. Exchanges of comics and greedily moving through the pages, just to make sure we read the most. Carrom Games, Cards, Cricket matches that we played, ignorant of screeching sun, blowing winter or pouring rains. Dirty clothes that i washed so as to keep “aai” unaware of mud-ridden football matches. And the list just goes on, endless. I never knew what really allured me so strongly. But I do was.

And today, here I am looking at the rain-hit porch from my AC cubical. Without a sofa, “Pohe”or “Chai Bhajji”. Drops kept pouring, waiting for me to run into the porch. Lush-green lawn’s spread out there, just to make me spellbound again. Gone are the rivers/streams and am in the middle of bulk of fountains. But these don’t make me restless. “Aai Daddy” are there, always at the other end of phone line. Mirinda can’t take the place rasna holds. Dan Brown or Sidney Sheldon can’t surrogate “Raj or Diamond”. “Batman-Superman” can easily be kneeled down by “Druv-Nagraj”. Gone are the games. Gone are the friends. Gone are the fun-filled days. Nature’s still out there. Calling me. Waiting to mesmerize me. With me completely oblivious.

Thanks a lot, corporate world. Thanks a lot!!!

Make us fools, but we hate waiting.

Some years ago, executives at a Houston airport faced a troubling customer-relations issue. Passengers were lodging an inordinate number of complaints about the long waits at baggage claim. In response, the executives increased the number of baggage handlers working that shift. The plan worked: the average wait fell to eight minutes, well within industry benchmarks. But the complaints persisted.

Puzzled, the airport executives undertook a more careful, on-site analysis. They found that it took passengers a minute to walk from their arrival gates to baggage claim and seven more minutes to get their bags. Roughly 88 percent of their time, in other words, was spent standing around waiting for their bags.

So the airport decided on a new approach: instead of reducing wait times, it moved the arrival gates away from the main terminal and routed bags to the outermost carousel. Passengers now had to walk six times longer to get their bags. Complaints dropped to near zero.

There is some great theory there. Man I love human tendency to fool oneself into not hating something.

Make us fools, but we hate waiting.

Evidence of Machine Learning scratched at Google X Laboratory

Inside Google’s secretive X laboratory, known for inventing self-driving cars and augmented reality glasses, a small group of researchers began working several years ago on a simulation of the human brain.

There Google scientists created one of the largest neural networks for machine learning by connecting 16,000 computer processors, which they turned loose on the Internet to learn on its own.

Credit where it is due, Google has to be lauded for encouraging the open research on topics so varied. There is so much potential with computing power and data at Google.

At cost of being cynical (a bit), I felt this would be so so useful (?) to Google with all the data that it has with it. And equally frightening to the users watching. Obviously Google is looking at that, no? And then I read this.

Google scientists said that the research project had now moved out of the Google X laboratory and was being pursued in the division that houses the company’s search business and related services. Potential applications include improvements to image search, speech recognition and machine language translation

And bingo!

On a side note, NYT had to ruin it by changing the headline to “How many computers to identify a cat? 16000”. Underplays the success that this is.

Evidence of Machine Learning scratched at Google X Laboratory

If India lose 4-0 against England..

… I won’t be surprised if BJP tags this loss as the failure of UPA government. Someone, mostly Gadkari, might go so far to claim that there is a big conspiracy behind the loss. UPA planned and executed the loss just to divert “aam aadmi’s” attention away from the zillions of unearthing scams.

UPA on the other hand will appoint a committee to look into the loss and give out the steps to be followed, “Committee will come up with the report which will go to PAC that will come to parliament where it will be discussed over and, if any irregularities found, will be open for discussion on action to be taken, followed by the actual action to be taken, given it is decided that another committee need not be formed to investigate the report submitted by the first committee.”

Diggy Singh would suddenly wake up and blurt out “Right-wing Hindu organisation RSS has to be behind this. I have evidence and can prove if I am asked to.” No one will ask him to stop spreading his bloody verbal  dysentery and he will happily go back to sleep.

Manish Tiwari, if asked for comment or if isn’t either, will go on and on with his heavy words artillery and pose another hundred questions at the end of which the initial question will remain unanswered.

Well cricket fans will burn few effigies and wait for the next tour/series/gully challenge trophy where India will play again as favorites.

BCCI will plan another tour (2 tests, 3 ODIs, 2 T20s) against Zimbabwe accepting their offer to pay the money won through win against Bangladesh in return.

New breed cricketers will continue their wait for IPL and play the international matches as practice sessions for IPL.

And Manmohan Singh? “Lammmbiiii khaaamoooshhiiii”.