Nov 26, 2006 § Leave a comment
Over 13 years back, I remember a debate that I had participated in, back at school on a topic that had some thing about whether the world was getting better or worse. I had spoken way too much about Global Warming back then. I remember I had spoken of a situation where some of the Polar Ice caps could melt and the water level could rise up and there was a possibility that some day the room in which the debate was being held could be submerged under water. One of the opponents had come up with an argument that Global Warming wasn’t true at all and there was enough data pointing against it. Well, even though I spoke with a lot of passion, I didn’t have much data back then to substantiate my claims. Of course, I had lost the debate back then …never mind!!!Al Gore did a fantastic Job exposing this inconvenient truth.
It’s quite alarming to see where we are taking this planet. If you haven’t watched this movie yet, go ahead and rent a DVD and watch it soon. Each one of us knowingly or unknowingly is contributing to the Global Warming. And yes …if the Scientists are right we just have 10yrs to avert the imminent danger and destruction ahead of us.
There is so much that we can all do to save the planet and make it a better place. Check out this link to see what difference you can make: http://www.climatecrisis.net/takeaction/. Let’s start acting on it right now!!!!
May 22, 2006 § Leave a comment
I attended TiEcon 2006 held at Santa Clara on May 12-13. TiEcon is the World’s largest Entrepreneurs Conference. Over 3000 delegates attended the Conference this year and the theme was “Disruption and Convergence – Entrepreneurship Unlimited”.
TiEcon 2006 featured several distinguished speakers and panels covering a variety of topics in depth and breadth. I attended the Keynote speeches by Shashi Tharoor (UN – Under Secretary General), John Doerr (Kleiner Perkins), Arnold Schwarzenegger (Governor of California) and David Lynch (Hollywood Producer).
Shashi Tharoor spoke about Disruption and Convergence in the Global Political Scenario. Shashi emphasized that the primary reason for terrorism today is the fear induced by lack of awareness. He was quite up beat about the role technology can play to improve the situation. He urged the entrepreneurs to work on delivering technologies at the bottom of the pyramid to bridge the digital divide. In this context he mentioned about Nicholas Negroponte’s initiative at MIT to deliver a $ 100 lap top.
John Doerr, the World’s most famous Venture Capitalist was interviewed on the stage by Michael Malone, an ABS News Columnist and a Silicon Valley Veteran. I was very impressed with John’s Social focus in the areas of Education, Social Entrepreneurship/ Micro credit, Pandemic Flu Prevention and Green Tech. He presented some interesting pics forecasting what Global Warming could lead to …Gosh!!! There were very few areas in Bay area and Mumbai I could spot above the water in those Pics. John urged Entrepreneurs to really focus on areas that they can make an impact on the Society and solve some Global problems than building yet another inconsequential Enterprise Software Company. He emphasized on the need for Innovation in the Clean/ Green Tech areas relating to Energy, Drinking Water etc., John pointed out that while about 5% of the World’s Population lives in the US; US accounts for over 25% of the Global Energy Consumption. If developing nations like China and India were to start consuming Energy in a similar fashion, the planet would be at the brink of a disaster. He spoke about the inspiring work by Muhammad Yunus in the areas of Micro credit. John also quoted Tom Friedman extensively. One of the quotes I really liked was that the Solution for Global Terrorism will most likely originate from Silicon Valley (than Washington DC), when entrepreneurs come up with a technology that would reduce the demand for Gasoline globally and bring down the prices to $18 per barrel …Well, I said to my self …Long live Innovation …Long Live Silicon Valley 🙂 …
Arnold Schwarzenegger enthralled the audience with his electrifying presence and spoke about making California the World’s preferred destination for entrepreneurs. While I often heard a lot about the “Great American Dream” – Perhaps, here was a live example. Arnold spoke about his story from being a Teenager in Austria to a World’s Body Building Champion, Successful Realtor in LA to the best paid actor in Hollywood and to top it all becoming the Governor of California, the Fifth Largest Economy in the World …all this in a single life time and that too being an Immigrant!!!! Isn’t that very inspiring? Arnold said this is only possible in California!!! I was impressed with his Passion and understanding about the current situation in California and what’s needed. Arnold spoke about he turned around the Debt situation in California; how he would like to improve the Infrastructure (like Roads etc., which is currently under capacity) to gear up for the Population growth. Some thing interesting he pointed out was currently we can not unload the Cargo fast enough at the Ports in California because that would increase the traffic and block all the roads 🙂 …He emphasized a lot on the value of Education and improving the Education Infrastructure in California. He also spoke about his mission and travel plans to Market California to the Global business community.
Some of the Panel discussions I attended and liked are:
Guy Kawasaki mesmerized the audience with his presentation “The Art of the Start”, even though he over ran the allotted time. The concluding Keynote was by David Lynch, who spoke very passionately about the power of meditation and its practical value in daily life. The panel touched up on several areas relating to Creativity, Consciousness, Quantum Physics, Neuro-Physiology and Psychology and the connection with the ancient Indian Vedic Sciences. My take away from David’s speech that will stay with me for ever: “If you keep searching for Happiness around; you’ll never find it in any place – because Happiness is not in any place, it is inside you. Meditation is that technique which helps you discover the bliss with in”. Thank You David for such an enlightening and passionate speech.
May 21, 2006 § 2 Comments
Few weeks back I had an interesting email discussion today with my friend Bala, Director of Green Card Fever (among the top movies in Indo-American genre) about the impact of blogging on the Media & Entertainment Industry.
I first met Bala 2 yrs ago when he just started researching on the plot for his next movie project. He came down to Silicon Valley from Hollywood to interview a bunch of us (Indian Immigrants in the Tech Industry). His new movie project seems to be named Blind Ambition.
While the value of Face to Face meetings can not be underestimated – blogs can be effectively used as a good tool to poll the audience and get some good insights while researching on a new movie project. Yes – that’s really true. I recently attended lectures on the New Media and it’s impact on Journalism by John Battelle (the search guru) author of The Search and Dan Gillmor (former San Jose Mercury News fame and a Citizen Journalism evangelist) and the author of We the Media. Both John and Dan mentioned that they used blogging effectively to interact with their audience while writing their books.
News Papers present News as a finished product. Journalism is really an on going conversation and not just a finished product. 24hr News channels have understood this very well and hence they focus a lot on getting the Voices of the man on the street into their News coverage and conversation. New Media tools like blogs enable interactive communications in a much better way. Interestingly News Papers are working to cope up with this trend and are giving a significant face lift to their Websites. NY times recently revamped the Look and Feel of it’s website to make it look like a blog. San Jose Mercury News is trying to bring the readers to participate in the interactive discussions online. I am sure a lot of News Papers will join this band wagon and bring in more interactive features, forums and blogs into their Websites to have an ongoing conversation with their audience.
May 21, 2006 § Leave a comment
Past several weeks have been quite busy with lots of stuff happening at Minekey. Hence I didn't post anything on my blog. I am hoping to blog more frequently going forward.
We have made good progress on Alpha. Just recently we moved the Software from an Intel Desktop at IIT to couple of Servers in a Data center in Texas. Now we can do all the needed rigorous testing over the next several weeks to see if the Software delivers the promised results.
Also, I attended a few Lectures, Events and Conferences during the past few weeks. I will summarize my take aways in couple of posts shortly.
Apr 18, 2006 § 1 Comment
Information Overload certainly seems to be a key problem most netizens are facing today. Read my earlier posts "What have I been upto lately" and "And finally" where I have touched up on this problem at a high level and I have also talked about some of the experiences/ learning curve some of the early bloggers have gone through.
Bubba Murarka, seemingly a great technology enthusiast (one who is out there to try new products and services) has just posted his experiences/learning curve about reading blogs and feeds at Robert Scoble's blog.
Let's say you are beginner in the blogosphere and have some interesting stuff to talk about on your blog – but, how can you get your voice heard – when there are dozens if not hundreds and thousands of people talking about the same issue?
Blogosphere today seems to be heavily in support of links. Meme trackers like Memeorandum, Tailrank and blog search engines like Technorati rate you higher up when you have a lot of incoming links to your blog. That can often be a test for your persuasion skills and not always a best indicator of how good the content or the opinion you have presented on your blog is. How many friends can you blog roll and how many can you ask to blog roll you?
And then there are user rating/ social approaches like digg for example – where the bloggers can digg the article themselves and hope enough people read the article and vote for it to move it up the chain of authority. As the blogosphere continues to evolve there will be several interesting techniques and methods that would continue to evolve to rank the authortiy of the blogger and the relevance of the post.
On the other hand, for the blog/ feed readers how many blogs and feeds can you subscribe to and actually read win the limited time that we have? How do you keep track of all your friends blogs and also at the same time track some interesting posts from authoritative sources like scobleizer? This is certainly a big challenge for most of us today.
Don't be diasppointed !!! This is the problem we are working hard to nail down at my new start up Minekey. We will be launching to the public in the next couple of months. So, stay tuned.
Apr 17, 2006 § 2 Comments
Just wanted to say a big "Thank You" for all those wonderful emails and phone calls during the last few days. Your response is very encouraging and I really appreciate it.
I had some interesting discussions over the email and telephone on some topics related to blogging ranging from …the impact of blogging in the Entertainment Industry to … what should they be really talking about on the blogs etc., I'll put up a new post summarizing my thoughts on those areas.
In future, it may be a good idea to have some of these conversations right on the blog!!! Let's use the comments feature …that way we can have these interesting conversations for many of our friends to view later than just get buried in our emails.