Sunday, July 24, 2011

Why cant we Live and Let Live?

With the attacks in Norway it really seems like the last bastion of peaceful living on this planet has also been now shattered. It comes out that some right wing extremist who sat in his house dreamed up an European takeover by Muslims and he murdered 93 innocent souls to prove his lunatic point.

I was relieved for minute there that it was a right wing lunatic who caused so much damage in Norway and not another Islamist extremist group. But that lasted but for a minute - the thought that followed afterwards was that the other extremist groups of the world are a kind of "taking offence" of the spread of Islamist extremism and are resorting to the same tactics to showcase their totally and utterly whacked messages around the world.

Its only one of the latest of the horrific terrorist attacks all over the world that seems to show an ever decreasing tolerance levels around the world. Bombay was attacked again only a week back. Death tolls and killings around the world have reached such epic proportions that any number less than 100 doesn't even register in our brains anymore. We are getting desensitized to murder. That doesn't say  anything good about our society today. I today's globalized world when we all will be talking working and living with people from all over the world - Being Tolerant is not a just a "nice thing" but the very basis of sustainable peaceful living on the planet. Live and Let Live or see the planet burn in hate.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Transparency Revolution

We live in interesting times to say the least. The Internet's power is slowly being  released and its true strength is coming to the fore. With the entire world wired in to what's happening in the most hidden alleyways of the world there is little that the governments of today can keep away from their people and the rest of world.

Of course everyone has seen the impact of Wikileaks and the Middle East revolutions and how the toppling of the various regimes have happened in short span of time. All this has been observed and written about by far greater thought leaders than poor old me with his laptop. What i wanted to point out was something I have not seen written around and that's a name for this phenomenal revolution happening right under our noses.

Hence I take it upon myself to christen this grand revolution as the Transparency revolution. Why? Well since the time that different forms of governments have been running the countries - be they democratic, autocratic, socialistic, republic or even anarchic - the citizens of the such governments have almost never been pervy to how the BIG decisions impacting their day to day lives have been taken by those who lead/rule/govern them.Now slowly with the help of the Internet there is more and more transparency demanded and obtained by the people and governments all over the world have had no choice but to slowly but surely let escape the secrets they have for so long kept hidden within the select circle.I understand it must be quite scary for many of these governments (yes, even the democracies are scared) but for now they have no option. Unless of course they find the way to tame the Internet entirely as a communication medium.

China is trying to do that currently - I must say I'm quite surprised that its worked till now. Just the sheer number of Chinese people who live outside China and are able to access all the information and bringing it back with them must be raising quite a scare among the Chinese Politburo members.

The worry must be quite similar with the Indian political leaders too. Though they have been "elected" by the people there is still far too much that is hidden under the dark cupboards of government that needs to be cleaned. Like I said we live in interesting times. Lets wait and watch what expose comes next !!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Customize Me

Happy 2011 everyone. I wont even bother excusing my writers block and would just like to thank the heavens above that I'm still writing :-) . A new decade's starting and it makes you look back at the decades gone by (90's rocked obviously for my generation -Go Bhumkesh Bakshi and X Files) and wonder what's in store for the coming decades.

One of the things that we notice is the almost global shift towards individualism and the personalization of everything. From your mobile phone background screens to your Christmas gifts to your cars - Everything is now customized. Mass market is so un-cool!!! I think customization of our lives is going to be one of the biggest thing for this and coming decades.

Lets imagine a completely customized world of 2030 for inspiration. A new child is born - Customized from the DNA analysis of the Mother and Father to make sure only the best qualities in both are exemplified in the child. The kid gets a name which is customized and totally unique for him/her - XtraOrdinary007 or something (Ofcourse alterable when the kid turns 18 to be customizable for the kid's choice). The DNA analysis (or whatever else can be used by medical science) gives the kids vaccination lists, his food patterns, allergies, kind of education he/she is best suited for and automatic enrollment to such a type of school and later on college. Everything you touch, feel, smell, hear are attuned to what's your customized preferences. He touches Coke and the bottle says sorry your preference is for Pepsi, find it on the top left shelf. She chooses Sufi music and the Infinity playlist Apple Imeandonlyme Pad says your suitability is for hard rock.

As the kid grows up , The Social Network of the time will provide the best friends customized for your needs and the best partners you might find around your location who are the perfect match for you. The jobs customized for your abilities are listed and your in the queue for those jobs automatically as and when they become available. The list goes on with your favorite hangouts, eat-outs and shopping destinations and brands of clothes. You begin to get the picture.

The point I'm trying to get to in this long winding way is that maybe customizing everything is probably also not something that might be best for us. Some things are better left non customized and finding out what works for us and what not is also as much about the journey as much as the destination. I hope we seek the balance in the coming years of what we what to know for sure and what might be something that we are willing to explore. Like finding the friends we need and the partner in life we seek. Like trying out the new music in store or a new hobby. Making this point is kind of ironic for me because I honestly believe this is a good business opportunity for the future and have even discussed with my brother on the topic. For that I would say, I could always do with a customized mug though :-) Customize Me but to the extent that i still have a choice of taking a small journey I would like to call Life.