An Year of The Most Amazing Movie : Lights. Camera. Love

It’s an year since Autograph released. Not only was the movie impeccable, the songs were perhaps a shade better. Here’s a translation of the most striking song from this super soundtrack – “Aamake Aamar Moto Thakte Daao…”

Original Bengali Lyrics

Amake amar moto thakte dao

Ami nijeke nijer moto guchiye niyechi

Jeta chilona chilona sheta na paoyai thak

Sab pele nashto Jibon

Tomar ei duniyar jhapsa aloy

Kichu sandhyer guro haoa kaancher moto

Jodi ure jete chao tobe ga bhashiye dao

Durbine chokh rakhbona na na

Na na na na

Na na na na

Ei Jaahaj Mastul Chhaarkhaar

Tobu golpo likhchi baanchbaar

Ami rakhte chai na aar taar

Kono raat dupur-er abdaar

Tai cheshta korchi bar bar

Saantre paar khonjar…..

Kokhono akash beye chup kore

jodi neme ase bhalobasa khub bhore

chokh bhanga ghume tumi khujo na amay

ashe pashe ami ar nei…

amar janye alo jelo na keu

ami manuser samudre gunechi dheu

ei station -er chattore hariye gechi

sesh train -e ghore phirbo na na na

na na na na

Ei Jaahaj Mastul Chharkhar

Tobu golpo likhchi banchbaar

Ami rakhte chai na ar tar

Kono rat dupur-er abdar

Tai cheshta korchi bar bar

Satre par khojar…..

Tomar rokte ache swapno joto

tara chhutchhe ratridin nijer moto

kokhono somoy pele ektu bhebo

anguler phaanke ami koi…

hiseber bhire ami chaina chhute

joto shukno peyajkoli fridge-er sheet-e

ami obelar daal-bhaate phuriye gechi

gelas er jol-e bhashbo na na na

na na na na

Ei Jaahaj Mastul Chharkhar

Tobu golpo likhchi banchbaar

Ami rakhte chai na ar tar

Kono rat dupur-er abdar

Tai cheshta korchi bar bar

Satre par khojar…..

Na na na ……….

Attempted Translation

Let me live my own way

I have sorted myself out in the way I could

What I could not ever achieve, let those be

Achieving it all just ruins life…

In your world of obscure lights

Like broken pieces of glass this evening astray

If you may so please, let yourself float away

I won’t spare a telescope for the flight

Na na na na

Na na na na

The mast of my ship – a near wreck

And yet I pen stories of survival

I don’t wish to keep her afloat

And tend to the tantrums noon or night

For that is why I am trying relentlessly

To swim ashore…

Slowly though, descending out of nowhere

If you re-discover your love for me

Don’t wake up to look out for me

I am not just around… not anymore

Don’t light up the lamps for me

For lost I am in the milling crowd

And the station… somewhere in there

I won’t return on the last train either

Na na na na…

The mast of my ship – a near wreck

And yet I pen stories of survival

I don’t wish to keep her afloat

And tend to the tantrums noon or night

For that is why I am trying relentlessly

To swim ashore…

The dreams that rush in your bloodlines

They are perhaps rushing their own merry way

If time you may find, try and look over

From the slits between your fingers… Where am I?

I don’t wish to reach out in this gold rush

And left out in the cold, in one corner of your fridge

I have already had enough… perhaps the last time

Don’t just look for me trying to stay afloat

Na na na na…

The mast of my ship – a near wreck

And yet I pen stories of survival

I don’t wish to keep her afloat

And tend to the tantrums noon or night

For that is why I am trying relentlessly

To swim ashore…

Na na na…

And to round it off, the quick embed follows. Share & Savour!

Choicest Typefaces of All Time : A Look-back

Although I am not averse to Gill Sans, nor hold any personal grudge against Times New Roman; I rarely find myself being satisfied with a presentation or document set in the same. Make no mistake, I still respect the Tahomas & Verdanas of our time – not to forget the Couriers, our first big break into the world of digital typefaces!

But if I were to sit through a session of hand-picking my best bets to live the rest of my life with, I would choose the following ten of a kind –

The Choicest Typefaces

Article Autopsy

Article Autopsy - Episode One
About Adam Hartung –

A brief look-up on any search engine would lead you to impressive essays about the aforestated. I zeroed-in on one that seemed to be one of the popular results.
It was really heartening to know that someone had achieved so much in a span of two decades and remained rather unknown to most circles. One of his most impressive lines read having been the leader of the team that introduced the concept of home delivery at Pizza Hut – all the more impressive when you know that pizzas have been home delivered for over a century now and Domino’s started out with this as their mainstay in the 1960s!
So much about the author though – and if it helps, well he has an MBA with distinction from Harvard and also a stint at Boston Consulting Group.

About Forbes –

Forbes has been a synonym for listing the Czars of Capitalism. However, the organization as such is not in the best shape so to speak – by the COO’s own admission, “On many occasions, we’ve been materially out of sync with the prevailing wisdom of the moment and where the world was,” Tim Forbes continues, “The tide seemed to be going the other way, but we don’t change our fundamental view.”
As for its digital version, Times had this to say in their 2009 report – “one of the top five financial sites by traffic [throwing] off an estimated $70 million to $80 million a year in revenue, [it] never yielded the hoped-for public offering.”

About ‘The Article’ –

We now go through the article that all this background leads us to.
Before I begin, I find it sufficient to state that I am an ex-employee of Microsoft but none of this holds any relation with residual affinities of any sort. Quite simply put, it’s a take on quite a punctured hypothesis – if I can so put it.

The article basically takes you through a classic story-telling weave (which I term ‘S.E.E.’) –

1. A carefully chosen Hard Fact that prevails today (STATEMENT)
2. Statistics; again carefully chosen, transformed & interpreted to justify the hard fact (EVIDENCE)
3. Offer a prospective vision with conscious attempts to sound impartial, yet append bottom-lines that defy it. (EXTRAPOLATION)

This is akin to the most basic form of argument skills. From Judith Glaser to a host of other people, anyone having a brief insight on the structure of story-telling would be able to differentiate between a discussion and a hypothesis.

Let us look at each of the SEE elements in isolation –

1. The statement is based on the fact that Apple has overtaken Microsoft by quite a significant margin when it comes to Market Capitalisation – quite an achievement, but Microsoft has always been a company operating in a steady ‘top five’ band and it last lead the technology market-cap space in 2003. In a similar comparison, one could take the pretext of overall revenues and suggest Apple needs a lot of catching up to do; however, in essence, we acknowledge the fact that Apple has done well over the last one year (finally, after having been around for close to Microsoft’s agile & impressive lifetime!)

2. With a valid statement, the general idea is to select graphs & figures that drive home a message, in this article for instance, we make the following observations –

• Microsoft invests more than one-and-a-half times its nearest R&D rivals towards its own research and development – something, that the author uses as a tool to show where Microsoft is leaking money. What makes it more interesting is that he had to use MS-Office to generate that graph with the default Calibri font in place and still a convenient yet muddled remark for Office 2010.
• He then goes on to compare Smartphone market shares, whilst conveniently not choosing to cite projections from credible sources for Android, Windows Phone 7 and iPhone in the coming couple of quarters.
• The third graph probably gives away the bias in flashlights – with an app-pool comparison being a top-tier metric.
• He then meanders around Jack & Jill before concluding why Apple is the future.

3. The extrapolations, as we look at them, are pretty optimistic about Apple’s performance in the days to come while being equally critical of Microsoft’s strategy – why not, if you have as high an awareness level to leave out the fastest selling gadget of all time (Xbox Kinect), you can be pardoned to at least question Microsoft’s strategy.

I am assuming here that awareness is a precursor to strategy – something that we thought was the author’s true forte.

The Emperor Who Faded With A Whimper

In the hoopla of India lifting the ICC Cricket World Cup, a handful might have thought about a player, warrior and a whole lot of other adjectives rolled into one we can colloquially refer to as ‘The Superman’, actually drifting into a silent retirement.

Fans may swear for Sachin’s godliness, critics may crave scores of lines toeing in Murali’s divine skills or even Ponting’s brute mental strength – but in this bokeh of a focussed discussion of the game’s greatest, we have conveniently forgotten to focus on one man who is irreplaceable – the one who makes this picture the bokeh it is.

If you think of it, you can recollect commentators talking of Sehwag being in the ‘Tendulkar mould’ or Murali finding emulators – one even played for KKR last season!

But a genuine doubt that I nurture is if you will ever hear of ‘The Next Rawalpindi Express’.. ‘coz seriously, you don’t unearth a Superman every few years!

And when he silently slid into retirement sitting on the benches during the touted ‘epic’ semi-final of the World Cup, the audience hardly took note. To them, either sixty years of malign was too blinding to admire a true titan or they had conveniently chosen their ‘Gods’ and in return had disrespect for a man not to be seen on the hunting grounds again.

Shoaib Akhtar has taken his last wicket and had his last hurrah in international cricket – a bitter pill to swallow. Even more bitter when you think of no farewell words to follow.

As for a fan like me, I have my little fistful of words..

You are the Protagonist of every story we didn’t write,
You are the Subject of every song they never sang,
You are not Everything they ever wanted,
‘Coz you are Nothing short of Something they can never have – The Superman from Pakistan, We miss you..!

P.S. I grew up wanting to be you ‘coz no cricketer has ever evoked the kind of emotions you generated when you steamed-in each time for your country. I wish you all the success in the road ahead and company that is worthy enough to acknowledge your contributions.

Shoaib Akhtar - The Superman from Pakistan

Shoaib Akhtar – The Superman from Pakistan

Cloud Computing, SAAS – A comparison with traditional industry approaches

Here’s a small round-up of Cloud Computing, SAAS that I wrote out while comparing its advent with the traditional industry setting.
___________________________________

Cloud Computing, more so than a buzzword, is here to change the way business models operate in terms of not just IT services but consequences far-reaching such as ownership and risk associated with capital itself.
SAAS – or software as a service, one of the three primary facets of emerging cloud computing platforms, specifically allows users to use features of softwares to their advantage without requiring them to have the infrastructure to host the software nor the associated cost of ownership. We take a progressive view of SAAS and its impact on the traditional business landscape in the next three sections.

i. The contrasts of business models

Traditionally, a business model has had four distinct phases attached to assets or processes involved in value creation. These are outlined in the overlapping vein diagram shown below–

Figure 1: Traditional business model phases

Quite evidently, a typical ERP implementation at a big corporate house would then involve ownership of robust hardware infrastructure, associated cost of ownership of the ERP software, the operator and scheduled maintenance and patch fixes until the next big thing emerges on the horizon – which is a matter of less than five years in the field of computer science.

With the arrival of SAAS, this total cost of ownership takes a big slash with the firms only paying as they use – rather only paying for the operating part and do away with all other phases of the traditional value creation model. The resulting diagram is now pretty simple –

Figure 2: SAAS impacted business model phases

To put things in the right perspective, the phases of value creation remain much the same – with a SAAS provider owning, maintaining and disposing the associated infrastructure & soaking in the total cost of ownership; but hundreds of other organizations can now benefit by only paying as they use – changing the entire product-based chain to a service-oriented approach. The risks and costs now lie exclusively with the SAAS provider while organizations are happy to use the services offered at an extremely tiny fraction of costs.

ii. The crossover chromosomes

The more poignant question then is how do we go about assimilating an upcoming trend like SAAS into the time-tested processes? Will it make things significantly better or merely fade into obsolescence with the ‘next-big-thing’?

It would be worthwhile here to note that SAAS is merely an extension of the cloud computing model that has been around for over two decades now. Most websites, since inception, have been hosted on servers available on rentals/subscriptions and also registered via domain registrars/resellers offering such a service. Thus, having a third-party host has been an industry trend for most concerns operating on the internet for quite some time now – the term assigned being IAAS or infrastructure as a service or PAAS (platform as a service) in some other cases.

With SAAS, we take the next logical step of bridging the gap between traditional ways of carrying out business processes and the way things have been done over the internet for years now. Although not without associated risks and privacy concerns, SAAS offers a great deal in its service-oriented way.
A generic approach to adopting SAAS for say, a firm looking to move from a traditional office applications suite, would primarily involve the following flow –

Figure 3: Steps to assimilate SAAS into traditional processes

For any organization, a pilot project or initial analysis of which fronts to approach SAAS for would be essential. Once the results from the same have been assessed, and weighed for organizational & operational fit, the specific wing or process line can migrate to a SAAS adoption strategy.

iii. The need for meiosis over mitosis

Before we conclude, it would be in the best interest to identify the best practices from the traditional setting as well as the most favourable offerings from SAAS. The competitive landscape has always been about evolving and not simply replicating from past experiences – let us take note of the same with respect to SAAS while incorporating it into the traditional organizational setting. We focus on retention factors (those that need to be carried forward from traditional settings) and adoption factors (those needing incorporation going forward).

Retention Factors –
• Risk Analysis – Traditionally, risk analysis, with respect to ascertaining which party owns how much of what and in what respects is accountable for recovery and business continuity, has been of great importance. Going forward, we find, the same would be equally important – even with increasing reliance on SAAS.

• Business Continuity Planning – BCP has been another important aspect of traditional business settings. With the infrastructural ownership lying outside organizational domain, a denial of service by SAAS provider could render processes arriving at a grinding halt. In order to ensure continuity, fallback plans assume critical importance going forward.

• Total Cost Benefit Analysis– Although SAAS appears to be a cost-effective service offering, there can be cases where an organization may possess enough skill and infrastructure to support an in-house deployment more economically than taking up SAAS. A critical evaluation of total cost benefits derived is therefore still relevant, especially in the light of a nascent SAAS industry.

Adoption Factors –
• Discarding extensive ownership – By definition, an adoption of SAAS would provide organizations the advantage of doing away with most of the costs related to owning and operating of facilities that augment software usage.

• Focussing on result-oriented approach – With a paradigm shift from product-oriented to service-oriented offering, the criticality of defining the results desired from an application/software assume high importance. Since the costs are now tied to such metrics as CPU cycles and usage time clocking, one cannot allow peripheral tasks to take lead and end up defeating the whole purpose of SAAS. It is therefore essential to identify the precise results we seek to derive from the application rather than focussing on supplementary tasks.

• Driving a service-oriented culture – With an increasing emphasis on concentrating on core competencies and value creation, most supplementing processes will continue to face outsourcing or in broader terms, a service-oriented approach – whereby, the focus would be on driving processes for executing an organization’s core tasks while getting as much of peripheral tasks executed by a service-oriented culture as possible.

Ironies

It’s a tale of two nations – which began as many and if all had been fine, could have been one.

Yesterday, was a day of not just Halloween, but of one of the best one-day international games I have ever seen. Pakistan ended up beating South Africa and Abdul Razzaq left the Proteas scared – very, very scared on Halloween night.

Having followed the match in almost entirety, I was my jubilant self over dinner and suggested my room-mate to go ahead and catch the highlights – after all, he’d enjoy every minute of it and will remember it as a great game of cricket. But the reply was as swift – “Kya mazaa aayega dekh ke jab Pakistan jeet gayi?” (What fun would I have watching it when Pakistan won?)

I was at a loss of words for a couple of seconds, and just added – “Yaar, mujhe lagaa shayad jo team better jazbaa dikhaaye, use jeetna chahiye” (Buddy, I guess I thought the team that showed more spirit should win)

What was more ironic was the fact that the dinner we were having had been brought from the local Pakistani restaurant where we are regulars and generally the owner gives us a discount of 2-3 euros each time we visit.

But I respect his perception of the whole case. It is natural for many on both sides of the border to feel this way – it doesn’t matter if the two land masses have seen history as one over 5000 years, but what has remained to this day is 50 years of enmity, distrust and lack of admiration in any sense.

I however question my take on the whole scenario – who is at fault for not having the share of appreciation? Razzaq – who played the innings of his life for his country? The local restaurateur – who warmly welcomes us and offers discounts apart from great food? Or is it me – who feels elated whenever the Pakistan Cricket Team or say any other team shows great spirit to win?

I rest my case.

 

India & Pakistan

She’s Back..!

We’ve got her back, the most beautiful woman to grace the universe… ever!

After ten months of raging a brave battle against multiple myeloma – Lisa Ray is right back!

While this comes as a sense of relief and happiness to folks like me – the ardent fanbase as such, for several others, who’ve become admirers of this diva during her battle days (through her blog or otherwise), it comes as a news of re-affirmation of the belief that they had grown patrons to.

It’s almost a sense of having been a part of the victorious army that in the end ensured good prevailed over evil – my comments at her blog, my own little way of encouragement through a word or two; it has all come out with her recovery in flying colors!

Here’s a cheer to her fantabulous victory and with eyes shining with tears, here’s wishing that I keep witnessing her several times over gracing our silver screens for years to come..!

Lisa with her 'new hairdo' :-)

The ‘Uncommon’ Indian Elitist

SOURAV GANGULY – [sho-oo-rob gaan-goo-lee] – noun; Former Captain of the Indian Cricket Team. Most successful Indian Test Captain till date. Skipper of the Kolkata Knight Riders in Indian Premier League. Widely been held incompetent as a player and captain in between recurring periods of prolific playing streak. Lately, the second most popular subject of jeering by a section of Indians (after Shahrukh Khan) suffering from severe identity crisis and an abominable urge to be heard.

Dada has come a long way.

Yesterday, it was another one of those days when he stopped way short of expectations for a staunch fanbase – much to the delight of a ‘premium’ section of Indians.

Given my humble coding skills, here’s an attempt to chart the working algorithm behind these (premium) folks, here goes –

1. Start

2. Identify a/another domain of discussion

3. Am I any good at this domain? If yes, go to step 4 else (who cares?? also) go to step 4

4. Identify the most successful person/team/club/firm/artist in this domain.

5. Does the person/team/club/firm/artist derived in step 4 enjoy the largest fanbase around me? If yes, go to step 6 else go to step 4

6. Is there an overriding ‘oomph factor’ in going for an inferior person/team/club/firm/artist? If yes, go to step 7 else – there’s no way out, just take up and go to step 7

7. Am I now surrounded by a sizeable amount of people who can defend my allegiance to this person/team/club/firm/artist since I know (not much == nothing) about my new found ‘love’? If yes, go to step 8 else go to step 6

8. Start planting my fan status and derived opinions that can help heal my identity crisis and jeer anything that comes along the way.

9. Am I gaining enough mileage? If no, repeat steps 2 to 9 else go to step 10

10. I am now a ‘premium’ soul – let me bask in the glory!

11. Stop

One of these days, I hope to codify this into a ‘predictor’ – given the need for one, I might as well have found out the next sell-out.

And as for Dada –

Shaara jibon taai shey lorechhe.. korechhe.. aar jeetechhe; aashchhey shomoy, ta-paalte daewaar khomota kaaro-r moddhe dekhle-i jaanbo.. aabar phire pey-chhi Dada!”

Till then – to the ‘Uncommon Indian Elitist’ – Jog on!!

I’m Afraid.. Afridi..!!

That is pretty much all of the fan-base has on offer for this mercurial and supremely talented guy after being served a two-match ban for ball tampering in the last one-day international against Australia.

Yesterday was a rare sight, a well-galvanised team that was rallying behind its Captain – something I have failed to associate with a team as talented as Pakistan.

Having been comprehensively beaten on most occasions and at certain others, succumbing to the enormity of the prospective accomplishment of pulling one off Australia, the Pakistan side has looked like a mere shadow of its illustrious past for most of the winter.

While not many tolerate – let alone admire, the flair and flamboyance of this team on this side of the border, I have always been a devout fan of the inimitable passion this team carries on to the field. Make no mistake – Team India is where my faithful support lies, but it is the sheer will to win – perhaps even more than the Aussies, that has found Team Pakistan a fan in me.

It was then no wonder that I was all but looking up to the current team to fire after the debacle at Sydney.

Enter Shahid Khan Afridi – and Pakistan was a new outfit altogether. But the hope and highness was short-lived. Afridi chose to have a meaty bite at the cherry in the most crucial of match circumstances. The act did not go unnoticed having been performed in broad daylight of the media shots.

While the timing of such an act was really pathetic from the standpoint of the match – Pakistan went on to lose the match, it also comes across as a blow to Pakistan’s chances of fine-tuning and rallying around Shahid to build the team that one has come to associate with their legacy.

I hope the ban does serve its purpose. In the case of the otherwise, we could have well turned up another ‘what-if’ scenario in a troubled outfit.