My Life, The Universe and Everything

Truths I learn. Barriers I seek to break. Let me scream.

Archive for June, 2007

Thank You For Smoking

Posted by themischord on June 29, 2007

This is a very interesting movie adapted from Christopher Buckley’s novel. Nick Naylor is a lobbyist for tobacco. He is brilliant at his job and takes great pride in the challenge. Any one can lobby for red cross, but how many can for tobacco? Which brings the thought, is it about taking up a challenge or doing the right thing? This I think is extremely important to think of.

The conversations in the movie are brilliant. Not coz they are witty, but coz the author shows how easy it is to make fallacious and elusive arguments and get a large audience to fall for it.  Some very interesting conversations are here.

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Shut Eyes Are Blind

Posted by themischord on June 29, 2007

That’s a pretty lame title, never the less, it holds. I grew up refusing to believe that India was a ‘developing country’. I was sure that it was more than just pride that made me think that India was as good as any developed country. When I moved to US about a year back, it was with a strong desire to ratify my belief.

I work with a 20 year old who has played with ever generation of the Mac. There is this other guy, who is a renonwed Linux kernel hacker, author of 5 books and important contributor to many open source projects. I was fascinated when I met him, more so when I realized how young he was. I wondered what was so right about the environment these guys grew up in. I had not even heard of Linux or Mac until relatively recently. I feel sheepish is saying this, but I used Internet for the first time in 2000. Explains?!

Thinking of technology, there is another industry that comes to my mind – animation and cartoons. Bollywood and other regional film industries were fast in picking up after independence. But a Walt Disney doesn’t exist in India. Why?

It is a bad argument if I pick up a few big technology driven industries of the west and say that their counterparts don’t exist in India. For a rational analysis, in isolation, did India develop any of its own? I’m thinking hard.

Technology penetration at a macro level is a completely different issue. I’m thinking of plain technology existence/availability and realize that 10 years back, we were 20 years behind the world. This gap thankfully seems to be bridging at a decent pace.

According to Darwin’s theory of natural selection, intelligence of organisms will naturally develop in a progressive direction, if they have to survive. Let’s see where we go. My eyes are open.

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Ode to those Unknown Artists

Posted by themischord on June 19, 2007

I come across artists of different forms, varying talent each day at the train station. Some are good, some are pathetic. But this one left me in total awe. He was making sketches of people waiting for the train. Unlike the regular artist, he has to get it right before the next train comes along, which is typically only a few minutes. Of course, he should get it right, and also hope to make something out of it.He made my sketch in about 2 minutes. I’m not sure if it looks like me, but I take the image to be an expression of how I looked to him. I was fascinated by the particular features he highlighted. People have told me in words, what I am to them. This is the first time someone showed me how I look.

sketch2.jpg

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Water

Posted by themischord on June 14, 2007

I watched the movie Water. It is the story of widows in India, set in a pre-independence era. What struck me most was that no character shed a single drop of tear in any scene. Given the depravity of the situation, I expected to see a lot of crying. Here is where I give the director 5 stars. She shows that laughter and tears are not always the sides of the same coin. In their years of isolation, the widows are shown to have submitted to the tradition, accepting fate and waiting to grow indifferent as the only means of escape. The widows have rare occasions of laughter, but there seemed to be no occasion of tearful distress. Natural? Can someone who has not experienced bliss, truly cry about having lost it?

Trust A. R. Rahman to create amazing music.

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