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Showing posts from 2013

Anatomy of a gossip

Gossip - a: rumor or report of an intimate natureb: a chatty talkc: the subject matter of gossip..

Gossip is the Devil's radio. -- George Harrison

Most of those who say they don't like to gossip are lying. They probably fear to be a subject of gossip themselves. I would like to ascribegossas the unit of gossip. Now how to define one goss? Well, say, you are watching a gossip show on TV, or reading a magazine, a goss would be defined as the number of people you can get engrossed in a conversation about the topic.  Pretty subjective and crude definition, but that's the best I could come up with.  We will talk more about it towards the end of this post.

There have been Hollywood movies about gossip.  It lies at the very core of the social human being.  It's a study area in psychology.  Studies have found that Gossip isn't just loose talk.  There are virtues and immoralities associated with it.  There's a social stigma and there are social groups tied to it.  In e…

Mr. Manager, if you think tea-breaks are a waste of time, you don't understand Productivity

A low intensity siren wails every afternoon at 2.30 PM at a factory near where I live.  I didn't know why, until, out of curiosity,  I asked the watchman of the factory one day.  It was supposed to be a break time of 10 minutes.  The workers could have quick tea, snacks, smokes or just relax for 10 minutes.  Not a long enough time in my opinion.  Further, I learnt that the factory was a scrap steel plant and all work was manual.  The laborers toiled hard for 9 hours a day, with a twenty minute lunch break and a 10 minute tea break.

This made me feel grateful of how lucky I am.  I can have a break at any time, and mostly quite a long one; this is in addition to an hour long lunch break.  Perhaps, this is a privilege of knowledge workers.  Although, along with gratitude, I also feel remorse for some of the IT companies and even some of the teams in my place of employment, where breaks were monitored, and sometimes even frowned upon.  I almost cringe at such attitude.  A company for…

On Moonshots and Elon Musk

'Moonshots', the term coined by Google's Larry Page, in reference to its wide and wild adventures in areas of technology, humanities etc., which are no less feats than the humanity's moon landing saga.  Larry used the term emphatically when Andy Rubin, the head of Google's Android division stepped down to 'pursue moonshots elsewhere in Google'.  Larry also referred to its Glass Project and the Self-Driving car Project to highlight the importance of moonshots.

What exactly does a 'Moonshot' consist of?  Why not ask Larry himself?  Larry says that he lives by the gospel of 10x.  That is, a 10% improvement in a product is not worth the time and effort.  If you can do it 10x times, it probably is.  What he means is that if you cannot improve upon something by a thousand percent than the competition, then it's not worth Google's moonshot.  He has truly lived by that so far. 

So now having understood the meaning of moonshots, who can we think of …