Friday, December 27, 2013

Person of the Year - 2013 | Edward Snowden - A Real Hero

Edward Snowden has two profiles :

- a rogue NSA contractor who stole US National data and revealed them to the wider world public.

- a NSA contractor who stood for the freedom of expression and privacy rights.

Depending on which side you come from, you would believe in one of the two perceptions or both of them. Irrespective of how anybody may perceive Snowden, he has changed the world by blowing the whistle on the biggest data snooping methodology by US government. I owe my life to computer science engineering education and love the openness of the Internet. I had always been a staunch supporter of retaining the freedom of internet away from government hands. However, US has killed the openness of the internet by exploiting the openness and technological advantage of US companies in the internet space for it's own benefits. In light of these development, I foresee a world where every country may rightfully demand the data of it's user stay within it's physical borders, there be restricting the openness of the Internet. 

Edward Snowden is only 14 months elder to me and was in a well paid Govt job. He however chose to give up all the comfort of the material world and undergo extreme isolation in this world when he decided to release information on data snooping which he believed is unconstitutional. His stand was vindicated when a US district court gave a judgement questioning the constitutional validity of the snooping process carried out by the US government. I consider him a hero for his guts to take on the most powerful government in the world and it's spy agency, and for the conviction of his belief on what is right and wrong. 

He is a beacon to the entire world on privacy rights and is my person of the year.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Atlanta - many times that we meet :)

Olympics water fountain at Downtown, Atlanta

During my school days in 1996, one of the assigned work was to do layer painting using crayons. I vividly remember one of the painting I did in that painting book - "Atlanta 1996" with olympic logo, as Atlanta hosted the olympics that year. 

Fast forward 13 years to 2009, Atlanta was the place I landed for my first overseas assignment. Wow - what a ride the initial months in Atlanta was !! Many a lonely walk ensued through dense pathways in Post properties at Smyrna - the reasons were many. One thing is for sure, never have I ever experienced such varied emotions in a short span of time. Staying alone didn't help either. Alas, what to do :)

Fast forward further, it is almost the fag end of 2013 and I'm lying down on a couch at a beautiful place in Alpharetta. People who were hesitant to come to Atlanta have made it their home (I was referring to my uncle [wink wink] ) and I keep coming to this city at least twice a year, if not more.

At any rate, Atlanta means lots of things - 
  • how to boil rice :D, 
  • how to pick oneself up when down, when left repeatedly down,
  • scratchy/messy acclimatization days in US, 
  • few good friends, 
  • experience going around US,
  • the determination to make it count in work and life when pushed to the brim in every sphere of life.
  • photo Shoots by my roommates
  • hindu Temple - Shiva and Vishnu together [when gods can be together, why can't people? ]
  • art of Living Atlanta,
  • Smyrna, Cobb parkway,
  • Dunwoody, perimeter areas, dunwoody station

  • Interesting visit to post properties
  • Alpharetta, sandy springs, Marta
  • first apartment lease taken under drastic circumstances [apt 121]
  • madras chettinadu, Krishna vilas, publix, Royal and many more places
  • Stone mountain, lake lanear
  • amazing downtown - the every busy intersections and the olympic flame
  • olympic fountain near park at downtown and CNN headquarters, the dance clubs
  • one of the busiest airport in the world.

Here it is, to Atlanta.

Atlanta Skyline

Sunday, December 22, 2013

அறிவு | Arivu

அறிவு என்றால் நிறையக் கற்பது என்றும் நிறையக் கற்றவர்களை அறிஞர் என்றும் அழைக்கின்ற தவறான பழக்கம் நம்மிடையே வந்தது எப்போதிருந்து தெரியவில்லை. ஆனால் அந்தக் கேடு நம்மைச் சூழ்ந்துள்ளது.

வள்ளுவப் பேராசானைப் பெற்ற தமிழர்கள் எப்படி இந்தத் தவறுகட்கு ஆட்பட்டார்கள் எந்த் தெரியவில்லை.

அவர் எது அறிவு என்று நமக்குத் தெளிவாகச் சொல்லிச் சென்றிருக் கின்றார்.

ஆமாம் அடுத்த உயிர்கள் படும் துன்பத்தைத் தன் துன்பமாகக் கருதி அந்த உயிரின் துன்பத்தைத் துடைக்க முயற்சி செய்வது அறிவு என்கின்றார். வெறுமனே படித்தவர்கள் எத்தனை பேர் இந்தக் குணம் கொண்டவர்களாக உள்ளனர். இல்லையே.

மற்றவர்கட்கு எளிதாகப் புரியும்படி நல்லவைகளை பண்புகளை உயர் குணங்களைச் சொல்லுவது அறிவு என்கின்றார். அது போல தன்னிடம் பேசுபவர்களின் பேச்சிலிருந்து சிறந்த பொருட்களைக் காண்பதுவும் அறிவு என்கின்றார்.

அஞ்ச வேண்டிய உயிர்க் குலத்திற்கு எதிரான பண்பற்ற செயல்
களைச் செய்ய அஞ்சுவது அறிவு. எந்தச் சூழலிலும் வாய்மைக்குப் புறம்பான செய்லகளைச் செய்யாமல் இருப்பது தான் அறிவு என்கின்றார்.

நமக்குத் தீமையையே செய்து மகிழ்கின்ற தீயவர்களுக்கும் கூட
மறந்தும் எந்தத் தீமையையும் செய்யாது தன்னைக் காத்துக் கொள்வது அறிவு என்கின்றார்.அறிவிலேயே தலையாயது அது என்கின்றார்.

இப்படி நற்பண்புகளைக் கொண்டு ஒழுகுபவர்கள் தான் அறிவுடையார் என்கின்றார்.அவர்களுடைய அறிவு எந்த நேரத்திலும் அவர்களைக் காக்கும். எவராலும் அழிக்க முடியாத கோட்டையைப் போல் அந்த அறிவு காக்கும் என்கின்றார்.

உணர்ந்து அதன் வழி நடப்போம்.


அறிவினான் ஆகுவது உண்டோ பிறிதின் நோய்
தந்நோய் போல் போற்றாக்கடை

எண் பொருவாகச்செலச் சொல்லி தான் பிறர் வாய்
நுண் பொருள் காண்பது அறிவு

அறிவினுள் எல்லாம் தலை எனப தீய
செறுவார்க்கும் செய்யா விடல்

அறிவு அற்றம் காக்கும் கருவி செறுவார்க்கும் 
உள்ளழிக்கல் ஆகா அரண்

Source: NellaiKannan

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Merry Christmas !!

Wonderful Christmas card video - let the festival spirit flow on. Love the kids in the video too, especially the last laugh. :D

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Energy Architecture Performance Index

WestJet - Christmas surprise. Wonderful !!!

Makes me want to fly #WestJet - for their wonderful and happy gesture. Of course, I won't mind the gifts either ;)

~ ~ ~ ~ Life is beautiful and Miracles do happen if "WE" all work as one ~ ~ ~ ~

Monday, December 9, 2013

Advertising and women

A disturbing but disgusting reality of the advertising world.

How is advertising shaping the image of women - Phewwww

Advertisements, as a medium and message, have transformed from being "what is" to "what we think is". The repercussions of these advertising messages on the sub-conscious mind is very hard to get rid off and creates a pseudo-reality than what is actually the reality. For example, If a women's face is altered/touched on an average 20 times before it becomes the cover of a magazine, where is the reality ? This pseudo realistic image is then used as measure by society at large to compare with innocuous regular women and girls. It is pathetic and I agree we all are part of the society which is in this bandwagon of comparison and feel ashamed.

While I agree that advertisements need to exaggerate and dramatize to capture the attention of the viewer in a limited span of time, it is not acceptable to push down messages which are nothing but LIES. 

Please watch the below video to fully understand the harmful impact of "WRONG ADVERTISEMENTS"

The speaker in the video below is the creator of the video series - "killing us softly"

Demeaning ads

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Nelson Mandela

RIP Mandela - the world is at peace because of your life. "It always seems impossible until it's done." 

A man who inspired millions to shed their differences and come together.

After all that he had done to help the South African nation rebuild, he could have been president till date. However, he chose to step down after his first term and retired. A great example of how a leader should be.

Nearly 22 years after being banned for apartheid policies, South African cricket team was reinstated to ICC and they played their first international game against India at Kolkata in 1991. A matter of pride for Indians to welcome the country that is changing and remedying itself to be a better one.

Nelson Mandela, fondly called as 'Madiba' is no more. A great loss to humanity.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Amazon Prime Air

Are you kidding me ?

I'm not sure how this is going to pan out, however, as a concept and an idea, it is outstandingly bold and innovative in the last mile of delivery. If proved viable, Amazon Prime Air can potentially alter the cost of delivery and tilt the experiences in favor of online retail and Amazon by an exponential factor.

Jeff Bezos "Nutters" attitude probably created this.

Official link : 

My thought on this spectacular and pathbreaking idea is brief coz I'm caught short of words.