Tuesday, November 21, 2017

It's ok to not have a TED talk

How many of you here have seen a blue monkey? That's 3...4...I see 5 hands. That's at least 3 people. What if I tell you that I first saw a blue monkey when I was 8 years old? Hard to believe, right? It's true.
Anyway, moving on. I come from one of those orthodox families, y'now (snickers from the crowd)...When I was 12, my dad told me something that I still recall vividly. Can't share it though, is a little private. But things got interesting when I turned 13, which was last year. Having been through what has been an absolute rollercoaster of a life, if there is one thing I have learnt, it is this. There are no hardware stores open past midnight in the village. (Hushed whispering)
So...I hailed a taxi last week, and somehow this memory has remained etched in my head. I hailed a taxi and the taxiwala refused. No warning, no pleasantries. Just a shake of the head (smiles). I'm sure this has happened to you as well (loud laughter). I had to take a bus but then that is another story. Little did I know then that this taxi refusal would change the course of my life altogether.
It is little things like this that make up one's weekday, isn't it? And then before you know it, it is the next day and I have to go to school yet again. Unless it is Friday, in which case the next two days would be off. Am sure anyone who has a weekend kinda schedule here would be able to relate to this, right? (Nods all around)
So today, I think back to that day, to that innocent young 13 year old, uncertain about his future, waiting at the bus stop and I would like to tell him just one thing. It can be anything as long as the overall set of things amounts to one - more than that would just confuse him I feel, he's just 13 after all.
And today, I tell you all the same one thing. Live life, look for blue monkeys, die, relive, love, burp, brush, quit your job, dance like no one is listening, get your heart broken, get your liver transplanted on a priority basis. And one day, when all is done, when the storm settles, you just might have your own Ted talk. Thank you all (applause and standing ovation)

Saturday, May 27, 2017

ER Stack

Patient (P) gestures that he cannot breathe and passes out. Patient attendant (A) shouts for the nurse (N). Nurse calls in the ER doctor (D).
D (rushing in) : Deploy powerful information platform - STAT!
N : Patient identity layer - loading and...active. Patient payment protocol - Go.
D : Hurry, we don't have much time. Patient's vitals are deteriorating.
N : Biometric and consent platforms : Go.
A : Doctor, what is going on? I can't feel my husband breathe. Please do something
N : Doc, all platforms go. We are on
D : Diglock? Disruptive innovation layer?
N : Check
D (to A) : We are good to go now. We've created this powerful platform right here. You have the whole world at your fingertips. The possibilities are endless.
A : What am I supposed to do?
D : There is no fear. Innovate fearlessly. This is the moment the nation has been waiting for, among others.
A : Is he going to die?
D : ...Our platform lets innovations scale rapidly. We don't suffocate the inventive energies of young people like you. It is completely secure, completely interoperable.
A : His heart has stopped beating. Please DO something!
D : The power is in your hands. We are not a service based ER unlike other hospitals, we are an ER platform. The platform architecture is non-traditional, in other words
A : He is gone, I think
D : I think you got too caught up in the legacy approach, that never works.
A : I'll see you in the court
D : Our APIs don't yet allow for legal innovation, but no harm in dreaming as they say.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017


27th April, 2017

Dear sweet daughter

When I proposed the theory of relativity, very few understood me. I will propose something now that will potentially be of much greater impact and perhaps change the world once again in a profound manner.
I must first ask you to protect this blogpost as long as necessary, until society is in a place where my idea will become acceptable. If digital has not been invented yet, please print this out and keep it somewhere safe.
I know I said a lot of things about forces but I think now that there is only one force, the force of love. Love is light. Love is speed. Love is speed of light.
Love is brownian motion, Love is photovoltaic cells, Love is special theory, Love is general theory, Love is unified field...er...perhaps not yet that, but am on it.
In all my equations I made two simple substitutions. I replaced LHS with LOVE and RHS with LOVE. Love begets Love.
There is as much love in a little boy as in a fat man.
When two twins travel at different speeds also love love love.
I love love. Lovelylovely looove.
Love is awesomeness.
Or maybe I have once again had too much to drink tonight

    Your father Albert Einstein

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Tanu mails Manu

Congana : Make yourself comfortable. This is going to take a while
Interviewer : (Not again) Oh? I thought scoops were fast.
Congana : I did promise a scoop but I will tell it as a leettil story. I'll use third person so no one knows I'm talking about myself. There was leettil girl in the forest.
Interviewer : (This was a scoop 2 years back. God, please let it be a different story) Do go on
C : And she fell in love. Isneet a great feeling, this love? She used to imagine a knight in shining armour on a horse. And then one day, she got an email.
I : In the forest.
C : from a fakerithik@hotmail.com and he had signed off as jadoo. Her heart fluttered, she knew who this person was! He would be her knight!
I : What were the contents of the mail?
C : The mail asked the girl to download a .exe file and click and run it. Her comp crashed. But lo and behold! Jadoo's next mail was a wonder. About donating a large sum of money to a Nigerian family in need of support. The girl was overwhelmed. She also went on to win a 50000GBP award from Pepsi, forward a pic to 12 people so she did not die immediately, and when she had won over Jadoo with her commitment to his emails, upload pictures on request.
I : Sounds creepy
C : When she asked to meet him, the mails stopped abruptly and broke her heart. And then one day, she saw him in the forest.
I : How did she know what he looked like?
C : Profile pic. And I can't describe what happened then. Cut to 2 months later. The girl finds her emails in the media. She is hurt. Society was shaming her for her comp's security vulnerabilities. As a feminist icon and the sole inspiration to millions of...er...other girls in forests all over the world, the girl stood up for her rights
I : The forest girl was a feminist icon?
C : Yes. As they say, adversity always brings out the icon-ness of people. Heartbroken but still a picture of dignity and courage, the girl started speaking up for herself, and for women across the globe. Society tried to suppress the truth but she would have none of it, she suppressed it herself. Society labelled her but she changed the labels. From the filth of secrets, she emerged pure and iconic and feministic.
I : Are we done here?
C : And yet, somewhere deep inside her, is a lost little girl from the hills...
I : Forest
C : ...who believes in love, though in a more courageous, exemplary and feministic kinda way. Maybe she is naive, but her naivete also has a certain iconicness to it. If there's one thing the girl learnt from the whole thing, it was...
I : spam filters
C : ...to be her own person. Because other persons were clearly not helping.
I : This has been wonderful, am sure 2 or 3 women reading this will still find a way to be inspired.

Friday, December 16, 2016

5 life lessons I learned from world travel...

I left home last week and have been on the road ever since. Travelling the world has opened my eyes to new realities and realisations. I list here some of them for the benefit of the explorers among you.
1. Income spike
When you decide to quit your job and travel the world, not many people realise that you suddenly start making money out of the blue. Every place you visit, a salary account gets mysteriously opened locally and money starts pouring into it, in local currency. Go on, try it if you don't believe me.
2. Cultural assimilation
You'll be amazed how much of local culture anywhere in the world just consists of taking photos near tourist spots. Selfie with statue of Liberty - you're already half American. Selfie next to Eiffel Tower, you can pass for a French person for a day. I stayed in a hotel in Agra once and the locals started addressing me as Jahan panah the next day. And what better way to learn a new language? I did a succession of daytrips in 2010 which now means I know how to say 'Hi' in 20 languages (15 of which are the same as 'Hi').
3. Perspective change
Ever notice how when you travel and get back home, you are a changed person and don't even realise it? I went to Nagpur once and got a bad stomach bug, as a result of which I went from being a middle-size peaceful bloke to being a thin, cranky person now.
4. Learning who you are
It is ironic that we need to travel out to truly understand who we are. I know now that I'm allergic to stale pudina chutney, for instance, something that even my closest friends wouldn't tell me directly to my face.
5. It's about the people you meet
And finally, travel, like everything else in life, is about the meaningful relationships you strike with interesting people you meet on the way. Like the pilot you never see, who tells you the altitude and temperature, mid-flight. Like the housekeeping lady at the hotel who says 'housekeeping' twice outside your door and then leaves. Like the pilot on the way back who...and so on.
So what are you waiting for? Pack your bag and be on your way. Here's to more world-travel induced life lessons!

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Open letter to Hon' PM

We might have many differences of opinion but I admire your courage in carrying out these surgical strikes.
These have struck fear into Pagistan's heart and their reaction, as expected, is to deny that these attacks ever happened. They are taking journalists from CCB and NNC to the LOC to the exact same spots where you 'say' the attacks have happened and then demonstrating that no such damage is visible. Though I agree with them whole-heartedly, I think it's time for you to take these propagandists head-on.
My suggestion is that for the next round of attacks, you send me a confidential map of the spots where strikes are planned and the expected times of the attacks. I will ratify these and send to the Pag army chief, at least one week in advance.
If we give them adequate time to prepare their army as well as the Loshkar Tauba and Jash Mohammed so that they are able to martyr all our brave soldiers, they will really have no chance to crib later on. This would be a real slap in the face for Pagistan.
If you do not follow this and continue to carry out surprise strikes across the LoC and that too in dim light, I can only say, as a friend, that India will be isolated globally for attacking innocent terrorists and stopping them from doing things they really enjoy.

Yours Truly
Arbind Kejrawal

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Ameer Khan proposes solution to Cashmere issue, irks everyone

On the eve of the release of his new film Daangal, superstar Ameer Khan called a press conference to read out from a neatly typed out essay titled 'If I were Prime Minister', probably borrowed from his kids' homework assignment. He went on to propose a unique solution to the Cashmere issue, involving physically breaking the state and transporting it to South India where it would be safer. 'I'm sure my friends Donaald Tramp, S.Ar.K, Salmaan, Rakhi Savant, Husain Bolt, Moe Pharah, Sunni Leon will all agree', he said, in an attempt to move up on Google Search results.
The news media reacted fast and he's slated to appear on 15 talk shows this evening to discuss his new idea. 'This has nothing to do with Daangal. Just thought of sharing my views as a citizen two days before the movie's release' he added. Meanwhile, Irfan Khaan, who had previously raised a storm over his comments on animal sacrifice in the run-up to Madari's release, is on the look out for an Islam related topic he can speak on, to promote his next movie - he invites topic suggestions at khantroversy@hotmail.com