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Line up at IIT, entrance exam to get simpler – The Economic Times August 28, 2005

Posted by gantech in External Links.
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http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/msid-1211896,curpg-2.cms

This is real bad stuff. I guess the media is just hyping up the actual scene. Nobody would like to see the standards of IIT's to be reduced. They could base it on 12th syllabus, but still make it tough. I don't understand the problem with the current setup. May be the poor aren't able to compete due to this unfair competition. Whatever move the Govt makes, let it be a wise one.

Chaltha Hai Attitude and India’s development August 15, 2005

Posted by gantech in Personal thoughts.
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This is in response (Not a reply, but I was enthused to write this by seeing his blog) to my friend Kumar's post on the ways in which an Indian citizen can help his/her coutry.

The educated people have a lot more responsibility on their shoulders as compared to the illiterate ones. Those belonging to the former category should lose this "Chaltha Hai" attitude and those belonging to the latter should switch over the former category. The concepts of compassion and mercy should be thrown away when it comes to business. This is the main reason India is found lacking when it comes to quality. The idea to excel in whatever you do and always want the best must be developed in every individual.

When I call up my cable operator that my cable is cut, he just replies, "Yes, It has been cut, What can we do?" The newspaper guy "Sir, I had some personal problems. This will not happen on most days, But I cannot assure you that it won't happen" . And my parents tell me "That's how it'll be. What can he do , Paavam" It is this Paavam attitude that I want people to get rid of when it comes to business. How do I care if he falls into a pit while delivering newspaper or while repairing the cable. All that I know is I pay him some amount for doing something, and that he should do it. That's all. That's the way it should be ideally (that's according to me). It's a similar story in the govt organizations.

So, people do not take up responsibilities. Whether it comes to keeping your time, delivering newspaper, or whatever. I have heard that doctors abroad have a lot of responsibility when it comes to the treatment of their patients. Just one misjudgement and their career as a doctor is gone. To give an example that India is indeed changing in this direction is the Airtel ad that I saw recently. You don't get your phone repaired within four hours of registering your complaint, you pay a 100 bucks less in your next bill. May have a lot of clauses, but still this seems to be the right direction in which India will have to move to achieve it's dream of being a developed nation.

For our elders, Indian products have always been inferior when compared to "foreign goods". Precisely the reason why one can see so many "Foreign goods" shops here. They are apparently never out of business. This frame of mind has carried over to the later generations as well. Such a frame of mind is bad, but it didn't have any repurcussions as long as our country's economy was protected. In todays world of open markets (unless you have the power to dictate terms and remain a closed economy), one has to match world standards when it comes to quality to even be in the race for the top. Otherwise you simply DIE. That's it. The law of nature "survival of the fittest" holds here. The "Chaltha Hai" attitude again comes to the Foray here. Quality is not delivered because it is not expected. Tell me a customer who demands a car that runs for 50 years without any problems. The marketing manager will just ridicule you if you ask him this. It is not that such cars do not exist (e.g Mercedes Benz). Such quality is just not expected and hence not delivered.

My view is that only when concepts like "Customer is the King" "Quality and then Price" come into business and the "Chaltha Hai" attitude is totally abolished will India realise it's dream. These are apart from the things that my friend put in like abolition of religion and religion based prejudices etc.

IIT Madras, Saarang and TRASH August 15, 2005

Posted by gantech in External Links.
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My views on Saarang were amply reflected in today's article in the Hindu regarding how much of trash it generates. 3.5 tonnes!!!!!!!!!!!!. Read the entire article here.

http://www.hindu.com/2005/08/15/stories/2005081515770500.htm

I know it is shameful to talk such things about my own institute, but really can't help it.

India – US Nuclear deal August 12, 2005

Posted by gantech in Politics.
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I found these Rediff articles particularly good. They are interviews of Former Deputy NSA Satish Chandra.

The US has not fully delivered – http://www.rediff.com/news/2005/aug/11inter1.htm

World doesn't know how many bombs we have – http://in.rediff.com/news/2005/aug/12inter1.htm

I am very bad at remembering names. Let's see if I start to remember a few of these names by blogging.

Astrology and Science August 11, 2005

Posted by gantech in Personal Ramblings.
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Tell me one theory in Science where the exact logic behind it is fully known. Right from our birth we go through various stages where we learn various theories. We satisfy ourselves by saying that we have understood the logic behind it. But if we keep questioning some points in that theory then it boils down to saying that "That is a fact" and there is no more explanation. So basically, we evolve through various degrees of logic before we finally come to a stand still and then there is no more explanation. We stand to accept that as a fact (atleast for a period of time until some one digs deeper)

Astrology is not much different. My friend Aswin says that the astrologers use very old data. Accepted, their data is outdated. Let their predictions be wrong. So that means that, the usage of the same methods today is wrong. But how can that totally refute the very basics of Astrology. And one more thing, people didn't make laws for astrology and then leave it there. That too was developed as a Science. The conventions were different those days and everything was referred to as a "God". There were people who constantly worked on it increasing it's predictive capabilities. They didn't sit dumb. By they I refer to the various scholars of the yesteryears. Astrology didn't develop in India alone. The science simultaneously and independently (or so I know) developed elsewhere as well. But the principles of prediction are so similar. How do we account for that.

I learnt some principles of Astrology without questioning it's fundamentals. I was wrong in that. But there is so much of Science and Mathematics in it. The age-old principle of teaching was "You believe what the Teacher says, then you question it and learn more" or so I believe. The principles of Prediction are so vague and loose that it is not correct to base the predictions on only one factor. You can't relate predictions to one or even a hundred factors and get some statistical data from it saying "this is no better than chance" I wouldn't read or believe any of those. When you question those principles it is equivalent to questioning a Physicist "What do you think is the grand Unfied theory today?" Today's Science is not enough to check the validity of astrological predictions. That doesn't mean that you don't question it. But the fact remains that you can't get answers which is so for many scientific problems.

Another point that I would like to make is about those weekly daily or yearly predictions. I really tell you. That is just not Astrology. Stop quoting them as examples where Astrology has failed. Today, Astrology has gone into the hands of wrong people and they are exploiting it to their benefits. Say there are 12 Billion people on earth. How can a billion people have the same predictions. Just doesn't make sense.

All these sciences or so called "sciences" of astrology, Vaasthu Shaastra and so many more are as far as we know very very vague. As far as I believe we are not able to accept it because of the circumstances under which we have grown. I am not able to answer anybody who at the end of a very long fight asks me "O.K tell me one guy who always predicts correctly" There are no Astrologers like Physicists or Mathematicians.

That, there is so much of Science in Astrology or that it developed simultaneoulsy elsewhere or that the principles are similar doesn't answer the question. But we must accept the fact that we do not know much about it, and unless somebody comes to know more about it, we (who don't know anything) shouldn't comment on it's capabilities.