Friday, December 30, 2016

Stories: Perception on Perception

A teacher teaching Maths to a six-year-old asked him, “If I give you one apple and one apple & one apple, how many apples will you have?”

Boy replied confidently, “Four!”

Dismayed teacher was expecting an effortless correct answer (three).

She was disappointed. “May be the child did not listen properly,” she thought. She repeated, “pls listen carefully. It is very simple. You will be able to do it right if you listen carefully. If I give you one apple and one apple and one apple, how many apples will you have?”

The boy had seen the disappointment on his teacher’s face. He calculated again on his fingers. But within him he was also searching for the answer that will make his teacher happy.

This time hesitatingly he replied, “Four...”

The disappointment stayed on teacher’s face. She remembered that the boy loves strawberries. She thought maybe he doesn’t like apples and that is making him lose focus. This time with exaggerated excitement & twinkling eyes she asked ...

“If I give you one strawberry & one strawberry & one strawberry, then how many will you have?”

Seeing the teacher happy, the young boy calculated on his fingers again. There was no pressure on him, but a little on the teacher. She wanted her new approach to succeed.

With a hesitating smile, the young boy replied, “Three?”

The teacher now had a victorious smile. Her approach had succeeded. She wanted to congratulate herself. But one last thing remained.

Once again she asked him, “Now if I give you one apple and one apple and one more apple how many will you have?”

Promptly the answer was “Four!”

The teacher was aghast.

“How.... tell me, How?” she demanded in a little stern and irritated voice.

In a voice that was low and hesitating young boy replied, “Because I already have one apple in my bag.”

PS: When someone gives you an answer that is different from what you are expecting, it is not necessarily they are wrong. There may be an angle that we may not have understood at all. We need to learn to appreciate and understand different perspectives. Quite often, we try and impose our perspectives on others and then wonder what went wrong.

Disclaimer: '#Forwarded' label refers to stories and anecdotes send to me by friends or the ones I came across in net. I neither know the source of these stories nor its correctness. Being said that, I like the story and truly believe that readers will get inspiration/ motivation from these articles

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Stories: Value of Life

A little boy once went to his grandpa and asked, "What's the value of life?"

Grandpa gave him a stone and said, "Find out the value of this stone, but don't sell it"

Boy took the stone to an Orange Seller and asked him what its cost would be.

Orange Seller saw the shiny stone and said, "You can take 12 oranges for that stone."

Boy apologized and said that grandpa has asked him not to sell it.

He went ahead and found a vegetable seller and asked, "What could be the value of this stone?"

Seller saw the shiny stone and said, "Take one sack of potatoes and give me the stone."

Boy again apologized and said he can't sell it.

Further ahead, he went into a jewellery shop and asked the value of the stone.

The jeweler saw the stone under a lens and said, "I'll give you 1 million for this stone."

When the boy shook his head, the jeweler said, "Alright, alright, take two 24 karat gold necklaces, but give me the stone."

Boy explained that he can't sell the stone.

Further ahead, boy saw a precious stone's shop and asked seller the value of this stone.

When precious stone's seller saw the big ruby, he lay down a red cloth and put ruby on it. Then he walked in circles around the ruby; bent down and touched his head in front of the ruby. "From where did you bring this priceless ruby from?" he asked.

"Even if I sell the whole world, and my life, I won't be able to purchase this priceless stone."

Stunned and confused, the boy returned to grandpa and told him what had happened.

"Now tell me what is the value of life, grandpa?"

Grandpa said, "The answers you got from the Orange Seller, the Vegetable Seller, the Jeweler & the Precious Stone's Seller explain the value of our life...

You may be a precious stone, even priceless; but people will value you based on their financial status, their level of information, their belief in you, their motive behind entertaining you, their ambition, and their risk taking ability. But don't fear, you will surely find someone who will discern your true value."

You are Unique.

Disclaimer: '#Forwarded' label refers to stories and anecdotes send to me by friends or the ones I came across in net. I neither know the source of these stories nor its correctness. Being said that, I like the story and truly believe that readers will get inspiration/ motivation from these articles

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Chinese Method for Testing the Waters

USNS Bowditch
The cat and mouse game is on in South China sea, where most of the waters are claimed by China (nine dashed lines). What China don’t know is, how far US will go in South China Sea disputes to protect allies. Will they walk the talk? No one knows. Hence, China is doing what they can do at best. Test the situation… What make this game more interesting is, the actual policy of Donald Trump towards China when he comes to power.

Latest in the chain of events is the capture of US underwater drone. Pentagon claims that it is a scientific research vessel. However, it is quite possible that the vessel was researching Chinese navel assets deployed on contested waters. It is believed that, while launching underwater drone US ship - Bowditch - was just 50 miles away from Subic Bay (former US Navy base in Philippines). This means Bowditch might be outside of nine dashed lines.

As expected Philippines, didn’t make any hue and cry after the incident; which happened within the waters claimed by them. Philippines hardly said a word when new satellite images uncovered weapon installations on artificial islands around Spartly chain.

There may be two reason for this. First, Philippines navy is not in a position to take on Chinese; second, country is looking for Chinese investments; and finally, current president Durette wants more warm relations with China and slowly drifting away from US.

Well US protested formally and after a lot of exchanges Chinese agreed to return the captured Drone.
This incident happened days after US President-elect called Taiwanese president; which was first such official contact by any US president (or president elect) after Jimmy Carter recognized China on 1979. China didn’t take it well.

Where it is heading?

1. I believe Chinese is testing US; to know what extent America will go?
2. Most of the actions by Chinese till now are below a carefully defined threshold; beyond which US has to respond. Problem is, exactly where the threshold is?
3. These types of incidents will cement Chinese authority on entire South China Sea. When one of the contested party – the Philippines – is not ready to protest, US can hardly do much.
4. This incident also raise questions about the future of ‘US – Philippines’ relations
5. No consequence for Chinese actions will only make them bold to go ahead with this policy.


Monday, December 19, 2016

Launching from Air

As a first US launched Pegasas rocket from air, at a height of 40,000 feet above Atlantic Ocean, using an aircraft. This rocket later placed 8 tiny satellites, designed for better Hurricane intensity predictions,  in to orbits. 

All eight satellites are very small – as small as a microwave oven - but the important thing here is we are moving a step ahead and were able to launch the rocket and satellites from air. 

Current problem faced by whether forecasters is finding out the nature and intensity of wind formed under storm clouds. Current satellite configurations will give the data only twice in a  day. Rest of the data is coming from Hurricane hunter planes. With this grid of micro-satellites we will be able to get data in every 12 minutes for any storm formed in tropics. Without doubt, this enhanced forecasting capacity is going to save a lot of lives.  

Pegasus XL Rocket Launches with CYGNSS Spacecraft


Sunday, December 18, 2016

Where Supreme Court of India is heading?

I never felt so much lost when there was continuous washout of Indian parliament; more or less this became a norm than an anomaly. Nevertheless, there was a different set of expectations from SCI. Couple of recent judgements based hardly on any rational thought made a huge dent on those expectations.

Most important of that, is the issue of playing national anthem before the beginning of every movie in theaters. In response to writ petition (855/2016) ‘Shyam Narayan Chouksey’ Vs ‘Union of India’ Supreme Court told,

(a)    There shall be no commercial exploitation to give financial advantage or any kind of benefit…
Well, first point is fine.

(b)    There shall not be dramatization of the National Anthem and it should not be included as a part of any variety show…
Ok, let’s agree for a moment and go on.

(c)     National Anthem or a part of it shall not be printed on any object and also never be displayed in such a manner at such places which may be disgraceful to its status and tantamount to disrespect…
Shall not be printed? What about printing the anthem in books? What about writing it down? Aren’t we going to the extremes?

(d)    All the cinema halls in India shall play the National Anthem before the feature film starts and all present in the hall are obliged to stand up to show respect to the National Anthem.

(e)    Prior to the National Anthem is played or sung in the cinema hall on the screen, the entry and exit doors shall remain closed so that no one can create any kind of disturbance which will amount to disrespect to the National Anthem. After the National Anthem is played or sung, the doors can be opened.

(f)      When the National Anthem shall be played in the Cinema Halls, it shall be with the National Flag on the screen.

Points d, e, f constitutes the worst part of the judgement. On what basis SC made it mandatory to sing national anthem in movie theatres? What made movie theatres so special? Do movie theatres represents the idea of India? temple of democracy? most sacrosanct place in India?

If I want to hear national anthem I will play it. If someone is singing at the beginning of a related function – like flag hosting etc. – I will stand up out of deep respect I have.  When I hear the anthem in the back drop of Himalayan snow or republic day parade my mind will be filled with pride and happiness.

Does that mean I should wake up and respect when I travel in a bus and then anthem is played at nearby school? Or word when someone is driving bike? Just imagine, in movie theatres a B grade movie is getting played right after national anthem. I think this judgement itself is a disrespect to national anthem.

By the way, why insists on Movie theatres? Why not on Indian Parliament, Government offices and of course why not play the anthem at the beginning of every hearing at Supreme court?

Respect is something which comes from our mind not an injectable.

Now there are reports in newspapers that people are getting attacked in movie theaters for not standing up during national anthem.

(g)    The abridge version of the National Anthem made by any one for whatever reason shall not be played or displayed.

Come on.There are millions of cases pending in so many courts in India. In Supreme Court, itself there may be thousands of cases. Life of millions depends on those verdicts. People come to SCI with the hope that they will get justice. Justice delayed is equivalent to justice denied.  With all due respect, SCI, should not entertain these types of verdicts.