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Breakthology

Breakthology is a venture of Tarunjit Singh Bachcher, a top organisation performance coach in India. Good to see the shiny new website of Breakthology.

Microsoft Acquires GitHub. My thoughts!

The news came overnight of Microsoft announcing its acquisition of GitHub, something that was rumoured over the web in the last couple of days. I see a considerable outpouring of emotions in the developer community regarding this acquisition.

As someone whose first introduction (as a developer) to Microsoft was in the year 2001 learning what as beta versions of .Net development platform, I have passively watched the evolution Microsoft and other tech giants this century. I wasn't great at programming, but this experience, as well as subsequent ones, offered me a good perspective of the tech world.

My advice is, watch before you jump in joy at Microsoft acquisition of GitHub. The reasons are as follows:

A. Microsoft has a very questionable record about making meaningful sense with many of its big-ticket acquisitions. Cases in point - Skype(Loosely hanging in its portfolio, we used it a decade back, now we don't), Nokia(yes, the company we loved), Yammer(we used it then, we have forgotten it now, the interface anyway sucked), Linkedin( I mean what are they really doing about it? Has the user experience improved, or any new cutting-edge feature added, that couldn't have come without the MSFT edge?). Here's the official list of acquisitions by Microsoft.

B. Microsoft as a company has a very dominant internal thought that Windows and MS Office is its core, and everything else is subservient to it. It is the legacy of Bill Gates days, aptly reinforced in Steve Ballmer's stewardship. So we see Yammer now bundled with Office 365, for example.

So what can we expect from this acquisition? First, integration of GitHub to.Net Development platform. A new service to facilitate code level collaboration between developers in a more seamless way. A possible addition to the service bundle when tech organisations buy to .Net developer licenses. That's no doubt big, but then that's it.

I hope and pray that the dominant thought I have referred to above will not make it closed to the external ecosystem and let it thrive the way it is currently. But having seen the force of this dominant thought, I am not so confident. Having said that, I am not moving my code away from GitHub immediately.

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हिन्दी लिखना एक टेढी खीर से कम नहीं, ऐसी आम धारणा है। किन्तु क्या आपने प्रयास भी किया क्या? मैंने हाल में गूगल पर ढूंढा तो पाया कि कुछ अच्छे साइट हैं जहाँ आपकी मदद की सहज व्यवस्था है। रमण कौल की साइट सराहनीय है।यदि हिन्दी लिखना चाहते हों, तो यहाँ जाँए।

TOI Chennai Launch - How would the Hindu react?

Of course this post is speculative in nature but then isn't that the case with lot of things :)

The question is, how will market leader the Hindu react to the Times of India's proposed launch in Chennai:

Do nothing, no one can shake me - 0% probability.
Do nothing on the surface, work on the distribution control - 10 % probability.Start outdoors before the TOI does, buy hoarding spaces - moderate probability.Go for a drastic price cut and start a price war - almost certain to happen ( Do remember price positioning is not good but then you just lost the chance)Make the paper better - which means not saying a leading star hotel in Nungambakkam but saying Taj Coromandal instead- 10 % probability.Start publishing more color photos- 50 % probability.
In all we would be keen to watch whether the Hindu would adopt a defensive strategy and try to save the turf or a very aggressive strategy and try to kill the new edition of the TOI. And how about no strategy as a strategy?

FINALLY, WHO WON GOOGLE WORDMASTERS CONTEST?

Google organized Wordmasters Challenge in several cities in India recently (30th September,2006). Word is that close to 3000 people participated in this event.
(See Harshad's report on the event here) The winners are supposed to be declared today.Wonder who won it and what did the winning entries look like. Does anyone have a clue on this?

Updated:Nov 9 , 2006:I just decided to send a self-addressed-stamped envelope to Google. If and when I get a response, I will update this post.

Updated:Nov 16 , 2006: One week and no response received. Yes, a self-addressed stamped envelope with a covering note was indeed sent to Google's Bangalore office on the address specified in the event leaflet. Snailmailed on 9th Nov. So much for the mission to organise the world's information and make it accessible to everyone :)

Updated: Nov 29, 2006: I did send a second letter to Google, this time by courier, assuming the previous postal mail failed to reach them. The contents of my letter to Googl…