Monthly Archives: January 2010

links for 2010-01-29

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Posted by on January 29, 2010 in Links


links for 2010-01-28

  • Why do Indian women even bother starting a career if it’s something they plan to do only until they get married? There are a million other ways women can spend their pre-marriage years—they could volunteer, learn music, start a home business, get a philosophy degree, learn Thai cooking, seek inner peace or do whatever it is that people who don’t believe in a career do.
    This is why the men who run the Indian air force can get away with saying that they don’t want women fighter pilots because they have a tendency to leave after they get married and have children. It takes more than Rs10 crore to train a fighter pilot and why should they waste money on someone who’s unlikely to stay in the job, they reason. Women like Mirza just make it more difficult for us to fight this sterotype of the Indian woman. Incidentally, both China and Pakistan have women fighter pilots.
    (tags: women india)
  • -My favourite audience reaction to the fest? Provided by a glamorous young fashionista in a Paris kitsch outfit and a truly gorgeous hat, who was seen exiting the Baithak tent at great speed. "Is everything all right, darling?" an equally glamorous editor asks. The fashionista grips editor's shoulder. "Darling!" she says. "They're talking about books in there!"…
    -Leaving on Republic Day; at the Clarkes Amer hotel, there's an oddly touching flag-hoisting ceremony on the lawns attended by everyone from the managerial and housekeeping staff down to the darwans. It's quite sweet, right up to the moment where we salute the flag–and a local band breaks into a very familiar song. Not Jana Gana Mana, but All Izz Well from 3 Idiots.
  • The crowds this year dwarf the 200-odd souls who used to make the trek to Jaipur back in 2006 and 2007 to catch what was then a tiny fest. This year, the JLF is probably Asia’s largest literary festival, and has 220 speakers and writers, and about 15-20,000 visitors…But the junta reader is here, too. I meet a contingent of stalwarts from Calcutta, hordes of children from the local schools, corporate friends from Bangalore, and foreign tourists who’ve penciled “Dhzaipore” into their India itineraries…
    As Ali Sethi sings Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s poems, you can almost see the baton passing from one generation of story-tellers to another. Jaipur 2010 has the slightly insane feel of a festival that became a great Indian wedding, but it remains true to the original promise: this is a festival that’s as much about katha as it is about tamasha, and it delivers both in equal measure.
  • Of course there was one major fail for me. No it was not the outlandish length of the whole thing…No what was really shocking for me, was despite the theme of the torch being passed on from one generation to the next (hence Prakash Padukone becoming Deepika Padukone and Amitabh Bachchan spawning Amitabh Bachchan), there was no room for Jeetendra’s son Tusshar Kapoor and more importantly for Mimoh. I mean come on now. No Mimoh. Remember Mithunda in the original? Remember the elephant also?
  • Shorty Small
    was very tall
    despite his humble name.
    In fact, his height
    was quite a sight,
    and Shorty's claim to fame.
    (tags: poetry poem kids)
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Posted by on January 28, 2010 in Links


links for 2010-01-27

  • First, yes, there are many fewer jobs in traditional journalism, but that's not due to "free," but due to a changing marketplace. That happens…Maybe we don't need all those journalists in traditional roles, but who says journalism will be worse off for it? We're seeing lots of interesting new business models developing, and many new sources of journalism.
    And, while some might argue that we need "the press" (I would suggest we need journalism, which is a different thing), if that's true, then there will be business models to support it. Demand creates supply. But there are lots of "checks" on the gov't beyond the press…The idea that the press can't do its job if "free" thrives is as ridiculous as it is wrong. The "press" has always been paid for via advertising…The argument that journalism can't be done if it's free to the consumer is laughable.
  • PMSMT is a user interface without a backend database. A film actor, at least in India, is a cosmetic, steroid-pumped, six-packed, waxed, silicone enhanced front-end for a script-writer’s ideas, a cameraman’s vision, a music director’s genius, a writer’s tale, a playback singer’s voice and a fashion designer’s art. India is not its film actors. We really are the people behind the scenes, and yet all we get in these 16 minutes are all hat and absolutely no cattle. If this is National Integration, the limits must have been 0 and 0…
    Thank you Bollywood, for telling us that Indian achievers are almost always celebrity children, and not people who are self made. Amitabh jr, Yesudas jr, Shivakumar jr, Shiv Kumar Sharma jr, Amjad Jrs, Rishi Kapoor jr and Padukone jr really encourage all of us towards the lofty desire of wanting to be adopted by celebrity parents. How else can you be successful eh?
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Posted by on January 27, 2010 in Links


links for 2010-01-26

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Posted by on January 26, 2010 in Links


links for 2010-01-25

  • It's not possible to advise a young writer because every young writer is so different…If you're going to be a writer you'll probably take a lot of wrong turns and then one day just end up writing something you have to write, then getting it better and better just because you want it to be better, and even when you get old and think "There must be something else people do" you won't quite be able to quit…
    Memory is the way we keep telling ourselves our stories–and telling other people a somewhat different version of our stories. We can hardly manage our lives without a powerful ongoing narrative. And underneath all these edited, inspired, self-serving or entertaining stories there is, we suppose, some big bulging awful mysterious entity called THE TRUTH, which our fictional stories are supposed to be poking at and grabbing pieces of. What could be more interesting as a life's occupation?
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Posted by on January 25, 2010 in Links


links for 2010-01-24

  • Matt shows how you can easily add your books from off your bookshelf at home to the My Library feature in Google Books.
    To get started, simply follow the My library link when browsing on Google Books, then click on the Import Books link. Rather than type in the ISBNs by hand, you can use a barcode scanner to read and import the ISBN from the barcode on the back of each hard copy book in your collection.
    Once imported, you can rate them and view these titles in My Library on Google Books. The real power of this tip? You can then use Google Books-powered search to browse just the books in you own home library.
  • Does having good handwriting signal intelligence? No, not any more than it reveals one's religiosity. But many teachers make this correlation: It is called the "handwriting effect."…This is particularly problematic for boys, whose fine-motor skills develop later than do girls. Yet all children are taught at the same time — usually printing in first grade and cursive in third. If you don't have cursive down by the end of third grade, you may never become proficient at it…
    what we want from writing…is cognitive automaticity, the ability to think as fast as possible, freed as much as can be from the strictures of whichever technology we must use to record our thoughts.
  • Once you’ve installed all the updates, uninstalled all the crapware, entered your wifi password, and set your screensaver, it’s time to make that shiny new PC do stuff, and for me the doing starts with installing a pretty fixed list of free applications.
  • You may think, “I’m not addicted, I can quit anytime!” Well if you have more Facebook friends than real friends, something must be done. If you spend more time on Twitter than in sunlight, it’s time for change. If you spend more time working on your LinkedIn profile than doing actual work, it’s time for an intervention. Regardless of your excuse, this is not ok.
  • This offhand comment from the country’s highest judiciary is terrifying. The issue is free speech — not whether Khushboo is right or wrong. The Supreme Court is the final arbiter of justice in our country, the ultimate protector of our rights, values and Constitution. Even if the Supreme Court judges are uncomfortable with what is being said — and it would be tragic if our Chief Justice and others find liberal values undesirable — the right of an Indian citizen to speak her mind cannot be denied.
    Unfortunately, often the state and the courts fail to protect free speech, fearing popular unrest. This lends credibility to mob intimidation. If we value democratic freedoms, free speech needs to be protected more than ever by the state and the judiciary. Neither personal nor popular belief must come in the way.
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Posted by on January 24, 2010 in Links


links for 2010-01-23

  • some good tips here, esp.
    5. Sometimes people say, “I want to have a few close, real friends, not a bunch of superficial friends.” But that’s a false choice. There are all kinds of friends. I have intimate friends and casual friends. I have work friends whom I never see outside a professional context. I have childhood friends whom I see only once every ten years. I have several friends whose spouses I’ve never met. I have online friends whom I’ve never met face-to-face. These friendships aren’t all of equal importance to me, but they all add warmth and color to my life.
    6. Make the effort to say “This made me think of you.” We’re all busy, and keeping in touch can feel like a lot of work. One strategy that works for me is to write “this made me think of you” emails whenever I see something of interest to a friend.
  • 1. Don’t even try to change your eating until you have learned important skills, such as how to motivate yourself every day, how to get yourself to use good eating habits, how to withstand hunger and craving, and how to get yourself back on track immediately when you make a mistake.
    2. Motivate yourself every day by reading a long list of reasons that you want to lose weight every morning…
    3. Eat everything sitting down, slowly, and enjoy every bite–whether or not you feel like it…
    4. Stay accountable…
    5. Stop looking for the perfect diet or the perfect combination of foods…
    6. Change your mindset about food and eating. Recognize that you can eat whatever you want whenever you want OR you can be thinner. You can’t have it both ways…
    8. Teach yourself the difference between hunger…and craving or the desire to eat…
    9. Regularize your eating with a set plan of meals and snacks…
    10. Tell yourself that every time matters. It’s not necessarily the calories…it’s the HABIT.
    (tags: diet food health)
  • You'll need different kinds of questions for different stages in the discussion. Here's a list of six categories of questions for a Socratic Dialogue, compiled by Richard Paul of the Center for Critical Studies:
    * Questions that help clarify what the other person means.
    * Questions that probe assumptions.
    * Questions that look into the rationale, reasons and evidence the other person's using.
    * Questions examining viewpoints and perspectives.
    * Questions that probe implications and consequences.
    * Questions get to the root of the other person's questions.
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Posted by on January 23, 2010 in Links

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