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Saturday, June 29, 2013

The Idea Caravan- Food for thought

I have written about select talks from TEDxGateway Mumbai, December 2012. (Franklin Templeton Investments partnered the TEDxGateway Mumbai in December 2012.)


There are several other beautiful talks with inspiring and innovative ideas by several other speakers. These were my favorite ones. 

Angad Nadkarni

Angad Nadkarni is a young hacker who explains hacking in simple starts with explaining, what hacking is, in simple terms. He presents the sorry plight of Indian education system where students have too many sources such as text books, guides, reference books, coaching class material, online resources etc. He refers to most of these things as Noise.  

Angad and his team have come up with an application to hack the examination system and provide students with the material and questions they should be focusing on.
As per Angad, Examify uses complex algorithms to mine a lot of data and come up with important material.  Natural Language processing and machine learning are applied to identify trends in question papers and come up with the important questions, students should be focusing on. The big issue being discussed in this talk is the sorry state of Indian educational system with innumerable sources of information, but limited sources of knowledge.

I have some other views. Examify tries to game the examination. This is not a good way to study or learn. What Examify is doing internally may be something exceptional (running all sophisticated algorithms and stuff). But any app that helps a student focus on important questions, beats the fun of learning. If Examify is successful in what it's trying to do, students using Examify would have an edge over others. 

Video of Angad's talk is available on 

Gaurav Tekriwal

The big issue talked about by Gaurav Tekriwal in the TED Talk is on the mediocre mathematical abilities of adults around the world and how Vedic mathematics can be a solution for it.

I loved the short video by Gaurav Tekriwal on Vedic mathematics. Gaurav Tekriwal is the president of The Vedic Maths Forum in India. He has also been instrumental in winning a Vedic maths copyright case.  I myself have known a bit about Vedic maths and other speed systems of maths like the Trachtenberg method.

He introduces some basic applications of Vedic mathematics. Vedic mathematics makes maths and multiplication simpler and faster. I myself have some experience of using some simple tricks for finding square of any two digit number ending with 5.  Learning Vedic maths is simple way to extend your computing abilities. Vedic maths can help various types of people become better at basic maths.  As per Gaurav, most people around the world like UK, South Africa, have mediocre mathematics skills. Hence Vedic maths can help people improve their math abilities and evade fear of mathematics.  Gaurav Tekriwal explains the beauty and heritage behind Vedic mathematics.

Vedic maths can truly improve the mathematical abilities of our population. I have found most adults to be mediocre or poor at mathematics. Though, mathematical skills are not essential for success in many other fields, having a good mathematical brain is never a disadvantage and Vedic mathematics seems to be a simpler way to achieve that.

Video to the talk by Gaurav Tekriwal is available on 

Evan Grae Davis

The video is about the social problem of female genocide in India.
Evan Grae Davis talks about this grave issue of gendercide. In the starting section,  of the video, a woman casually mentions the way she buried about 8 female infants because their household wanted boy babies.  Evan Grae Davis has been involved in many documentaries recording the human needs and sufferings.

He introduces the problem of gendercide in India. He also presents some statistics about the female infanticide. One child policy of China has resulted in grave problems with skewed sex ratios. Globally, about 200 million women are missing due to gendercide.  He has directed a documentary "It's a girl" based on his views on the global problem of Gendercide.

Video to Evan's talk is available on 

Cynthiya Koenig

The big issue in this TED talk is the amount of time and effort spent by women in rural India on collecting and carrying water for their families.

Cynthiya Koenig focuses on the plight of women carrying 20 liter water containers on their head. She explains the adverse effects of carrying 20 liters of water every day on their head such as spinal cord injuries, head and neck injuries etc. The time spent by women on collecting water is time wasted. She introduces an innovative product called Water Wheel which enables people to collect water and roll the water wheel on the ground.

Water Wheel is an amazing product which saves almost 35 hours per week for women. WaterWheel is a 20 gallon water drum which also has other possible uses like energy generation, filtration, advertising, drip irrigation etc. 

The product looks very promising and may be answer to the tedious conventional methods of carrying water on the head. This story is truly inspiring and could be a great product to improve productivity in rural parts of India where women spend a significant amount of their time carrying and collecting water.

Video to Cynthiya's talk is available on 

Arunachalam Muruganantham

Arunachalam Muruganantham is an innovator from rural Coimbatore in South India. He identified the problem of unhygienic practices adopted by rural women during their menstruation. The commonly available sanitary pads were just too expensive for most women in rural India.

He felt the need of a low cost sanitary pad in rural India. He observed the unhygienic practice of using clothes as sanitary pad because the commercially available pads were beyond the reach of rural women. He experimented thoroughly and came up with an innovative way of manufacturing low cost sanitary pads. He narrates wittily about the circumstances which led him to innovate and come up with this solution.

His story is truly inspiring. The way he experimented on the pads with goat's blood and stuff like that. This is a very rare individual who ventured into an area about which most mean would never talk openly in most places. 


Video to Arunachalam Muruganantham's talk is available on 


Wednesday, June 26, 2013

How an apple a day keeps the doctor away

How an apple a day keeps the doctor away

Apple is a great fruit. As the ancient saying goes, an apple
a day keeps the doctor away. There are many reasons for the popularity and truth behind this saying. Apple has a lot of health benefits. The micro-nutrients in Apple help most people achieve optimum health. Apple has the following main nutrients which are reasons for it being a super-food.

Vital Nutrients in Apple

a) Iron- Apple is one of the few vegetarian foods high in iron. The iron content of apple is evident from the fact that a cut apple turns dark. This is due to the oxidation of iron in Apple. Iron deficiency causes various maladies. The most common problem with iron deficiency is anemia. Having an apple everyday prevents anemia and other maladies associated with it.

b) Vitamin C- it is true that Vitamin C is present in various citrus fruits. But the amount of sugar in citrus fruits is high and may not be recommended for everyone. Hence Apple acts as a healthier source of vitamin C and is recommended for people who may run into risk of vitamin C deficiency. Having excess Vitamin C will not result in any serious problems as Vitamin C is a water soluble vitamin.

c) Boron- Apple is a healthy source of Boron which is an essential element for optimum health, Boron is essential for good mind and body.

d) Phytonutrients - Apple is a rich source of Phytonutrients such as Vitamin A, Beta-Carotene and Vitamin E. The anti-oxidant properties of these phytonutrients make apple a wonder-fruit. Anti-oxidants delay aging and aid in tissue development. These are even more important for people with disabilities as any small deficiency could lead to major problems. For more assistance of Disability Living Allowance, please use the DLA Contact Number.

e) Fiber- Apple is a rich source of fibers. Fiber is very important in our diet and aids in healthy digestion. Lack of fiber in diet can lead to various diseases such as hemorrhoids, constipation etc. Eating an apple everyday aids in digestion and is recommended for all people. Apple is rich in Pectin which is a soluble fiber and aids in reducing blood pressure and glucose levels.

Healthy Eating for People with disabilities

Healthy eating is extremely important for all people. It is even more important for people with disabilities. Any small malfunctioning can result in a lot of stress and other problems in people with disabilities. Hence they should try to avoid unhealthy practices and embrace health foods like fresh apples. Please contact DLA Contact Number to known more on disability benefits and the transition from DLA to Personal Independence Payment (PIP).

Healthy eating is more important for people with disabilities because they are less likely to have healthier practices such as exercise. Most people resort to sedentary lifestyle due to various reasons. Hence eating healthy foods, such as Apple is very important for people with disabilities. They should also quit unhealthy habits like smoking, drinking etc. With healthy eating habits, people with special needs become much more vibrant and are able to appreciate life and positive aspects.
Lower risk of cancer and other diseases

Apart from the above mentioned nutrients, Apples have a lot of other minerals and micro-nutrients in small amounts. Apples also prevent tooth diseases and aid in healthy teeth. Apples are also known to reduce the risk of cancer. Apples are also known to have anti-inflammatory properties and are great for people with allergies and asthma.

Benefits to Digestive and Nervous System

Very few people are known to be intolerant to Apples. People with weak digestive systems also find apple to be appropriate. Apples are wholesome fruits which are best eaten with skin. Only the seeds of apples are not recommended as they are known contain some amount of cyanide. Other common health benefits of Apple include prevention of Alzheimer's disease and dementia.

Conclusion

Recent researches also indicate that Apples may help reduce risk of eye problems such as cataract which usually develop in old age. Apple is one of the few fruits which bring in a lot of benefits to different organs. Apples can ideally be had for breakfast or an evening snack. Truly, an Apple a Day can keep your medical bills low and keep your doctor away.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Five things to focus while trying to secure a job in a Foreign Country

Working abroad can be a good way to earn a higher salary and escape a bad job market in the home country. There are several strategies that can be used by job seekers to secure a job outside the home country. A basic research on the foreign country, working conditions, currency fluctuations, cultural aspects and other things like living conditions are essential before deciding on the country. The following five ways might be helpful for the job-seeker to increase his odds of securing a job abroad. When applying for jobs abroad all important documents such as your UK passport, resume etc may be required. You may be required to submit copies of your documents to head hunters and job consultants.

a) Designing your Resume/Profile to meet requirements abroad

A good resume is a very important aspect of a job-search. Applicants should project their profile well in their resume to suit job requirements in the foreign country. Some countries prefer longer resumes which are more than 3 pages where as some others prefer a single page resume. Hence an appropriate resume is recommended. It is also recommended to follow practices which are common to any industry or sector. A professional resume writer may be helpful to design better resumes and attract prospective employers.

b) Updating skill-sets based on general job-requirements abroad

Before applying for a job abroad, it is recommended to understand general job requirements abroad. Some jobs may have special needs such as an international certification. For instance, in some countries, an entry level financial analyst is required to have completed at least one level of CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) exam.The candidate should update his skill-sets appropriately and project his candidature in a positive way.


c) Applying for suitable positions

Job seekers are recommended to apply for positions relevant to their experience and interests.It may be a good idea to focus on job opportunities in a sector in which the candidate has expertise. It may not make much sense to apply for a lot of irrelevant positions. Hence the candidate should decide and narrow down on sectors and sub-sectors before applying for a job. This saves a lot of time and may also increase odds of securing a job.Each interview can be taken as a learning experience and can be valuable in subsequent interviews.

d) Networking and Schmoozing

Networking and Schmoozing are essential skills to secure a job in a foreign country. It is recommended to network with professionals in a similar sector who are working abroad. Professional networking websites may be of help here. Also, it is recommended to schmooze appropriately and gain referrals. This is not only helpful for securing a job,but also for future career.

e) Learning the foreign language (if necessary)

In some countries, basic understanding of the native language is preferred. Hence candidates can focus on gaining a basic understanding of the language, if applicable. For instance, a candidate applying for a position in Quebec, Canada may be given preference if he has some basic understanding of French. Though this aspect may not be as important as other factors, this may help in increasing the odds of nailing a job.

In addition to the above aspects, a basic understanding of cultural practices may also be helpful for candidates trying for jobs abroad.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Facebook Spam Update- [WTH] she went totally crazy and lost all control of the sharp axe :O Watch what happened..in..this

A recent spam cleverly crafted by some spammers has gone viral on Facebook. There is a link provided with three photos of a woman holding an axe and the comment says " [WTH] she went totally crazy and lost all control of the sharp axe :O  Watch what happened..in..this".

Three photos of the woman appear in feeds and some of the friends are automatically tagged if you click on the link provided. To add authenticity, a comment is inserted which says "She couldn't stop herself, it was really bizarre".This makes us believe that there is something about the photo and we click like fools.
Please avoid clicking on this link as this will only add three pointless photos and tag your friends unnecessarily. I am not even aware of any other motives of this spam.

Got some information from a website called hackillusion which explains, what happens when you click on the spam link:

As soon as victims click on the link, they redirects to a new page with title, [Video] She did this at the tender age of 15 and with a fake video player.facebook-scamAs soon as we click on the Play button a popup menu opens with a few shortcuts (Ctrl + L, Ctrl + C, Ctrl + W) have to follow to make verify you are a human. These shortcut keys to like or share this pic on your profile.
[Also Read- Facebook Keyboard Shortcut list.]By following all these shortcuts, the same photos also uploaded on your wall, and your all friends are tagged on these fake photos.facebook-vidoe-scam-humman-verficationLike Mostly facebook spam are created for money, this one also to earn money through advertising.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Yoko height increaser

Note: This article was written by me due to request from a client. He wanted spelling mistakes in the article. hence the word increaser is used.

YOKO

Good height is an asset to anyone. A tall person is usually associated with a lot of positive things. It is easier to secure a job, gain confidence of people, and be successful for a tall person. Being tall also opens up many opportunities in diverse fields such as military, fashion, movies etc. Even a small gain in height can impact a person's life by a large amount. Height is one of the few things which is known to have a multiplier effect in life. One of the most effective ways to increase height naturally is through the usage of our yoko height Increaser (home page). You can buy a genuine Yoko height increaser from our website. This is a proven and safe way of gaining height.

Yoko height increaser is a great product offering hope to people of short stature. This solely works on scientific techniques of magnet therapy and acupressure. Yoko height increaser combines the usage of ancient techniques with the latest research in the alternate medicine space. Millions of people around the world have benefited through the usage of yoko height Increaser (home page). Using Yoko regularly for 3 months has yielded benefit to a majority of users. However for effective gain, it is recommended to use the product regularly for at least one year.

Yoko height increaser is a magnetic sole made of high quality materials. This can be comfortably worn in running shoes. Using the Yoko device, while running is recommended. Some people also prefer using Yoko height device in their shoes the entire day. It may take some time to get used to wearing this the whole day. But after a while, it is quite comfortable. Most users of Yoko height device also observed a general improvement in their health. The Yoko device also has some magnets embedded in the sole. This works on the principle of magnetic therapy and aids in better metabolism and digestion. Better metabolism and digestion improves the possibility of height gain.

Yoko height device works primarily on the concept of acupressure. Acupressure works on the principle that hormones are produced in the body when certain reflex points in the heel and palm. Yoko is worn on the heel and stimulates certain glands which produce hormones. The growth hormone is produced from the stimulation of the pituitary gland. Yoko height increaser stimulates the pituitary gland and aids in effective production of the human growth hormone. This in turn aids in height gain. Millions of people have found this device to be life altering. The height gain observed is found to vary depending on various other external factors. But most people have reported positive experiences on the usage of this product.

Yoko height Increaser (home page) is found to be more effective when the users practice a healthy diet and exercise regularly. Some common stretching exercises, adequate sleep and healthy diet contributed to a more effective gain among Yoko height device users. It is recommended to follow right posture while walking, sitting, standing etc to derive maximum benefit from the Yoko height device. A small gain in height improves appearances significantly. Hence usage of Yoko height device is recommended to assist in height gain.

Top Restaurants For Food Lovers In London

London is an international city with people from diverse geographies. As a result of this, there is lot of restaurants in London for food lovers. The range of options available in London is great. In this article, we focus on top restaurants in London for food Lovers. There are also niche eateries like Oyster bars in London. For more information on rail travel in London/UK please contact national rail enquiries.

a) Balthazar- Balthazar is a fine dining restaurant originally from New York. The London branch is located in Covent Garden. Balthazar is well known for typical French Bistro dishes and also simple European dishes like the French onion soup. There is also a Boulanger housed adjacent to the main restaurant and serves exquisite bread and other baked products. The restaurant is available for lunch, dinner as well as breakfast and tea. It is recommended to book tables well in advance.

b) Les Deux Salons- Les Deux Salons is another fine restaurant in London located near the Covent Garden. This is a 2-floor Parisian brasserie concept restaurant. It is an amazing place to try out some authentic French dishes and enjoy some exquisite wine. The restaurant is located at a walk-able distance from most of the famous theatres around the Covent Garden location. Private Dining options can also be explored by food lovers who love to dine in large groups. There are two large rooms in the restaurant to cater to Private Dining Groups. The average cost per person in case of private dining is about 50 pounds. For conventional dinning, average price for the main course ranges from 15-20 pounds. The best time to visit this place is during the "Pre-theatre" time.

c) Harwood Arms- Harwood Arms is a great gastro-pub located in Fulham. Harwood Arms has won several awards and is rated as one of the top Gastro-Pubs in London in many popular food and beverage lists. It is one of the best places to enjoy some British food with some good beer or wine. Mostly wild venison is used for cooking and Harwood Arms is famous for venison and deer. Food lovers with a penchant for drinking would find Harwood Arms to be a great place to visit.

d) Viajante - Viajante is a popular restaurant located in an urban setting in East London. The restaurant is an upscale one. The prices are one of the highest in London. A full course dinner could cost as much as 100 pounds. There is also a bar attached with this restaurant. Private Dining options are available at Viajante.

e) Song Que- Song Que is an authentic Vietnamese cuisine restaurant located on Kingsland road in London. The most recommended dish at Song Que is the Pho which is a wholesome large meal. They have over 150 dishes and are known to be relatively cost-effective. Food lovers looking for some quick and wholesome Vietnamese food could drop into Song Que.

Apart from some of the top restaurant mentioned above, there are several well known places in London for a food lover. The variety of places is overwhelming and London is definitely a good place to explore food. For more information on rail travel in London, contact national rail enquiries.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

QI Group and Dato Vijay Eswaran

I heard about QI Group as Quest Gold in 2007. Quest Gold was offering an opportunity to buy collectible gold coins for INR 30k. They claimed that some of their coins were sold on Ebay for as much as INR 100k. They were selling gold coins worth about INR 8-10k. You could also opt for a Fancy watch if you didn't want coins. I got interested in exploring more about Quest.

 The Quest Gold Members motivated me to join. They explained me that I need to bring in more referrals to make money. However, at first I should focus on bringing in two members. And those two members should bring in two more people separately. If everyone in my network brought new members, I would make money appropriately. The amount of money I would make would be directly proportional to the number of people under me. What was this? Why did they want more people? Why did they offer gold coins worth 10k for 30k? Why did people get started with this?

 Well, it was a classic Ponzi Scheme. As long as the network would continue, all would be fine. A large percentage of 30k collected would go to the people in the network. A small portion would go into the company. Quest Gold was big in South Indian cities of Chennai and Bangalore. It was popular in software services companies such as Cognizant Technology Solutions, Wipro, MindTree etc. Most Project Managers were members of Quest Gold.


Now what is QI Group and who is Dato Vijay Eswaran? QI Group is the company behind Quest Gold. It supposedly sells luxury products. Some products such as water energizer are pure variety of horse-shit. Some products may be useful, but are overpriced. Dato Vijay Eswaran is a Malaysian Entrepreneur behind QI Group. Dato is a honorary title awarded in Malaysia. He is a mystic-type of person conducting some high-energy sessions for his members in South Asia.

One of the worst things about QI is the bull-shit products it sells. Members of QI give a false sense of achievement to bring in more scapegoats. I somehow find it agonizing that no government has taken strong steps against such companies. Companies such as Tupperware, Amway are atleast selling some high quality products for higher prices. QI Group seems to be offering some horseshit products. Even some journalist of Forbes seems to be supporting QI.

"When the Amezcua Bio Disc was introduced to the world in 2006, it heralded a revolution in the way we were able to redefine and harmonise the energy of water, greatly maximising its positive affect on the human body. Over the years that followed, numerous independent scientific tests verified the Bio Disc’s ability to positively harmonise energy." 

Quest Gold is no more in India. But QI has taken a new form. People are selling handmade watches, resort stays and QI membership to continue the Ponzi Scheme