Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Breaking Free of Stereotypes

Stereotypes are widely held beliefs about a specific group of individuals, based on, but not limited to, ethnicity, gender, colour, country, religion, profession or social strata. These beliefs are about behavior, lifestyle, choices and so on. They can be loosely called to be manifestations of inductive generalisation. The essential question is, from where does one get the stereotypes.

Stereotypes being a cultural issue, it is often inherited from the most important cultural influencers in life. While this list of influencers could vary for every individual, in my case, I feel it mostly comes from family, colleagues, friends, teachers, religion, education (and educational institutions), cities and states I have lived in(10 states so far, and counting!), games such as cricket and Tennis that I follow.

An argument is forwarded sometimes that stereotyping is sometimes good because it provides an initial behavioral clue to an individual, in the absence of any other information. The hint is, that if I meet a certain Mr. Tokuyama from Japan for the first time, my beliefs about the Japanese should guide my behavioral expectations of Tokuyama san. In real life, Tokuyama san could turn out to be very different from the mental image borne by me of Japanese executives.

While it is nearly impossible to be free of all forms of stereotypes, such characterization, which at best should be treated as a hypothesis and never a firm opinion, needs to gradually improve when newer experiences happen.

The detrimental dimension of stereotype is prejudice, which negatively guides our behaviour based on our beliefs about people of specific ethnicity, colour, country, religion, profession or social strata. It is often presumptuous. Prejudice is very much internal to an individual and often stays latent for years, only getting expressed on certain trigger events.
    

How Global Are you?!

The last thing a fish notices is the water around itself, so goes the saying. Today's world is so pervasively globalized that it is easy not to notice it! In our cricket crazy country, it causes no ripple to see a certain Mudhsuden Singh, aka Monty Panesar, deliver awsome bowling on behalf of England. Why Monty alone - Nasser Hussain,  former England Captain was born in 1968 in, what was then Madras. But then, it hardly raises an eyebrow. Tom Alter, an American, a highly acclaimed actor, was part of Indian theatre and Cinema, and when he passed away recently, the Mumbai film industry mourned as one of its own, which he indeed was.

But these were global citizens. In reality, there are elements of globalization within all of us, only the extent varies. When we meet French-speaking folks on the streets of Puduchery, when we buy cars from companies that are headquartered in Japan or Germany. Or, when an Indian design engineer, collaborates with French colleague on a deliverable for an Aerospace company in Seattle, USA, who will then part import the components from Germany and India! It is also possible, for example, for a UK based automotive company to get the engineering of their next car done in India, get it styled by the best-of-the-best designers in Italy, and email the same design drawing to a Chinese supplier of components for large-scale supply. The UK based car company would assemble and sell those cars not only in the UK, but in other markets, for example,  Continental Europe, where they would be driven by migrants from Russia. Talk about globalization!

The dimensions of globalization are so overwhelming and understated that Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary-General is reported to have once said - To argue against globalization is like arguing against the laws of gravity!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Amazon Prime Video and Chromecast Make for a Winning Combo

Amazon India has just announced the launching of Amazon Prime Video at a very nominal price of Rs 499 per year. In fact, if you happen to have Amazon Prime membership, this service is available to you at no additional cost.

So if you want to play a movie available on Amazon Prime Video on your Chromecast connected TV from your Android phone, here are the very simple steps:


  1. Install Google Home app on your Android phone.If you have a Chromecast device connected to your TV, you would find that device automatically showing once you run Google Home App.
  2. Start the TV connected to the Chromecast device. Change the input mode on the TV to reflect the HDMI port to which the Chromecast device is connected.
  3. One you have the Chromecast default screen visible on the TV, start the Google Home app. Click on the hamburger menu on the top left to expand the left panel. In that panel, select,  Cast screen/audio (highlighted in yellow below).


  4. In the next screen below, click on Cast Screen/audio. 

 


It will show your screen on TV. Next, go to the Amazon Prime Video. Click the video you wish to watch on bigger screen and enjoy thoue full experience on a larger screen. In this way you can enjoy your favourite movies, TV shows etc on your TV screen by projecting it from your Android mobile phone Amazom Prime Video app.

You would be surprised how easy it is. Welcome to the API economy!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Catching up!

Been long, really long since this page saw some action. Though this blog started in 2005, in 2008, I migrated to a hosted Wordpress and continued thereafter. As silly luck would have it, I missed a renewal deadline and not just lost the domain, but the entire content as well. All this while I earnestly hoped that some point I was wise enough to take a backup, but quite frankly, have had no luck locating it on my computers. The world has meanwhile changed significantly. At first technology caused huge explosion of information. Later, we went after tools that helped us make sense of the humongous mass of information generated in the previous waves, for it was not enough to just collect information and make sense of it as humans. As of now, we are struggling to find ways to provide contextual information - i.e,. information in the right measure at the right time through the right device or means.Things are exciting enough to again write about. Lets see how how we can take it forward.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Must Read -Prahalad and Krishnan's book on innovation

If Dr Prahalad's previous book on BOP kicked up quite a debate, here's one that you should not forget reading - "The New Age of Innovation: Driving Co-Created Value through Global Networks" must be read for the brilliance alone. Read more...

Friday, July 18, 2008

Dad Blogs and Son Blogs too!

Have you heard an instance of a dad and son both being bloggers? I learnt about Asit and Aniket Barma, who both hold their point of view via their respective blogs. Read More..

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Why would you want to read Bangalore Tiger?

Extremely few companies in India have achieved such an astounding success as Wipro, which was founded as an edible oil company and turned to IT. In fact, people outside India would be surprised to know that Wipro makes childcare products, lighting products etc. It is now a USD 4 BN giant employing nearly hundred thousand employees. Read More..