Tuesday, November 4, 2014

How a healthy child is the hallmark of a happy family

Health is an extremely important ingredient of happiness. A healthy child makes a happy home. It is important for the mental well being of other members of the family. It is obvious that good health promotes well being and happiness in a family. There are several ways we can ensure our children are healthy. One of the easiest ways is to try and provide proven supplements which can improve the immunity of children. Improved immunity ensures that children are able to grow better. Good health in early age is like compound interest. There are multiple benefits like better grades in school, better chances of leading a happy life etc.

Healthy children can avoid a lot of discomfort to family members. Common infections, if neglected can turn detrimental in certain cases. Hence, it is necessary to give due importance to a child's health. Of course, there are views that today's cleanliness is reducing immunity among our children. However, purposely exposing to germs may not be a wise idea at all. I certainly wouldn't recommend excessive use of stuff like hand sanitizer. Timely vaccinations are recommended to ensure good health in children. It is advised to go for all available vaccinations. Some doctors advise regular flu-shots. These shots can avoid certain types of germs. Vaccinations for illnesses like Typhoid and Chicken-pox are also available. Vaccinations build herd immunity and are essential for the well being of our country. There have been certain wrong notions and rumors surrounding vaccinations spread. However all medical experts have openly declared that such rumors are baseless and dangerous to the society.

Children should also be educated on basic cleanliness. Basic checklist should be followed while feeding a child. Anti-bacterial soap can help avoid many common infections in children. Common medicines like Tylenol can also be used if required. In case of prolonged illness, it is advised to consult a pediatrician. Good nutrition is another important thing to be kept in mind. The physical and mental health of a child depends heavily on the first 1000 days of diet. It is advised to feed children with a balanced diet. A child’s diet should consist of ample vegetables, fruits and whole grains. Probiotics can also be helpful to improve metabolism and digestion.  However it is recommended to consult with your doctor before administering any probiotics for children and infants.

Apart from the above mentioned steps to ensure good health, ayurvedic supplements can be of great help in improving immunity. Products like Dabur chyawanprash taste good and provide the goodness of herbs like Amla, Giloy etc. These products if consumed on a regular basis can be beneficial to a child’s health.  The pre-clinical studies indicate its anti-allergic and immune-modulatory potential. For more information, please visit https://www.liveveda.com/daburchyawanprash/

Good Blog on investing and Psychology

I recently came across a blog on investing and psychology. Several of the posts in the blog are dense are require a good amount of focus. The author certainly puts in a great amount of effort before each post. Recommend you to read this blog. This is a real gem I found in the last 6 months.


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Synced with Univercell Sync

UniverCell Sync is a new concept store by UniverCell. These sync stores have been established for serving customers in a better way. The difference between a normal store and Sync store is imminent. The ambiance, lighting and the smell of sync store is more chic. You can almost compare a Sync store to Imagine (Apple) stores. The market share of UniverCell is higher than most other retailers. In South India they have close to 40-50% of the mobile retailing business.

The UniverCell Sync has been established to attract tech-savvy customers who are on the lookout for latest gadgets and experiences. India has been quite slow in the process of adopting new technology. It could be due to the purchasing power of the population. However, stores such as Sync, allow customers to experience the goodness of technology and help them buy suitable gadgets. The bloggers who visited were asking about the impact of e-commerce on traditional retailing. The manager responded to bloggers questions promptly. I think her name was Soumya. 

Some staff members also conducted a demo sessions for some of the newer gadgets. The store has also setup a portable epson printer for customers to experience end to end photography. In fact lots of gadgets seemed to be targeted at amateur photographers. I spent about an hour browsing most of what caught my attention. There were some tablet like laptops and there were some laptop like tablets. Just kidding. I am always interested in debates that surround the topic of tablet vs laptops. Some coders dislike tablets. The normal tech savvy non-coders love tablets. Some people have and love both. This is the age of convertibles.

 I never miss an opportunity to visit gadget stores whenever I am in a mall. When my family members are shopping apparel and stuff, I find solace anonymously browing stuff in gadget stores. The placement of products in the store is quite interesting at UniverCell Sync Indiranagar. Most round  tables have 4-6 gadgets. Unlike conventional UniverCell stores, the mobile phones are not dummy sets. Overall, it was a good experience. I had a good time observing the gadgets closely. I believe, UniverCell Sync will allow customers to buy good products and accessories. 

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Fragrances- A matter of memories

Fragrances act as anchors to several memories. The creation of a quality fragrance is not an easy task. It involves connecting with the pschye of individuals. Understanding of customers is very important. The kind of fragrances that have been successful in the marketplace indicate a strong bias towards customer development and discovery.

Indians love fragrances that connect to their traditional pscyhe. Aromas of sandal, eucalyptus are not new to Indian people. Fragrances that are able to combine such traditional aromas with a good blend of synthetic smells will be successful. Complex aromas like that of coffee, cinnamon/clove, fruity smells like apple etc can also be successful. This is an entry to #InspireAFragrance context on Indiblogger. For more details, visit:

Monday, March 31, 2014

How Cloud Platforms Save time and Effort in the Software Development Process

Cloud computing platforms started playing a major role in sharing and collaboration. These platforms gained popularity in the last 2-3 years when major companies have migrated their code to servers hosted on cloud computing platforms. Previously, code usually resided on physical servers which were prone to software failures. Moreover, sharing code was not so easy or elegant. It usually involved an elaborate check-in check-out process and was usually aided with software tools such as VSS (Virtual Source Safe).

With the advent of cloud computing platforms such as Windows Azure (http://www.windowsazure.com/en-us/pricing/free-trial/) and open source hubs like Github, software code sharing has become easy. It is very easy to see your peer's code and review them as well. You can even reuse most of the functions written by other developers across the project. In Simple terms, you just use certain modules written by others and others use some modules written by you. This adds a lot of efficiency to the overall project. 

The traditional method of maintaining code on physical servers has a lot of disadvantages. They are more prone to crashes and other issues. A person should be dedicated to take backups every few days. They are also known to consume a lot of power. No employee wishes to "turn off" the server. These machines usually run 365 days a year. This also harms the hardware of the server. Today's cloud computing platforms overcome these conventional problems.  They are suited for conventional as well as agile projects. 

Companies that don't harness the power of cloud for software development process are usually doing stuff in the old fashion. This also projects a bad image of the company in front of employees and customers. Companies that adopt the cloud model are able to see the advantages almost immediately. Only the transition phase of moving the code from physical servers to cloud may be a bit tedious. But once completed, the efforts of employees compound and overall efficiency is achieved pretty fast.

Using services like Windows Azure will eliminate the need for extra physical systems. This saves power, space and the effort spent in procurement of the machines. Usually cloud platforms provide flexible pricing plans. There is also a free trial involved where employees of the company can checkout the features and maybe develop a small module or feature. They are billed if they select features outside the free plan. It is worthwhile to explore the options and setup an efficient cloud based system for the entire software development life cycle. In the long run, such initiatives are bound to save time and money. 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Treasury and Financial Supply Chain Flows

Treasury and Financial Supply Chain Flows

Source: The Handbook of Global Corporate Treasury

The entire process requires capital in order to run. Until the customer pays the firm, the inventory, operations and supplies need to be funded. Proceeds from sales received across locations need to collected and deposited, so that payments can be made from those or other locations for purposes of running the business. Accounts need to be maintained in these locations, perhaps in different currencies, and these accounts need to be managed. 

Trade transactions need to be funded, and documents must be prepared and used.The entire aspect needs to be planned and executed, and this forms the basis of one of treasury’s key roles, which is to handle transactions as part of cash management, managing the cash and funds of the organisation.

It is preferable to use the firm’s own money to make these payments, and hence the monies need to be moved efficiently from one location to another, making them available where they are needed. Where it is not possible to use the firm’s own cash, alternative arrangements need to be made—for example, borrowing from a local bank. Even if access to these funds becomes difficult, the firm still has to keep running—ensuring that there is money available when required ensures liquidity for the firm.

Excess cash needs to be invested securely to generate return for the firm until such time that the cash is needed. Long-term projects require capital—this needs to be arranged at the least possible cost and putting least pressure on the firm’s cash flows. The organisation needs to be creditworthy, and the financials of the firm have to be aligned to ensure that the performance is consistent with or better than expectations in order to sustain and improve the creditworthiness of the firm and hence its ability to generate liquidity and lower its cost of funding. This calls for managing the balance sheet efficiently, and with the right structure. This entire set of activities, the second of treasury’s key roles, covers managing the balance sheet and the firm’s liquidity (which is another aspect of cash management).

As the firm moves across borders, sells or buys from another country, or exposes itself to other counterparties and undertakes financial transactions, it exposes itself to risk or uncertainty that the business and financial objectives will not be met because of a change in some factors—perhaps market movements, defaults of trade partners or banks, or internal errors. The management of these risks forms the third of treasury’s primary roles.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Nature's Friends: A brief encounter with ants

I have observed several small children play with ants. Ants are an interesting species. I recently observed a 7 year kid in my community playing with ants. These ants were the small black ant species which are harmless. They don't have a sting like red ants.

The kid was observing the ants near a well. The ants were carrying food and were following each other. The kid was of the curious kind. He was careful not to hurt the innocent creatures. He was trying to confuse a few ants and mislead them. He was basically trying to lead them to a different route. Some ants were misled, but they were back on track in a few minutes time. I had known this phenomenon. Ants secrete a substance called pheromones which guides them to follow others. Once an ant has established a path, all ants follow the scent and try to reach the destination.

If an ant accidentally discovers a shorter route, it will leave a relatively stronger scent which attracts other ants. This leads to an increased concentration of scent in the new path. Most ants will then start using the new path. I tried to explain this to the kid in a simple way. I showed him he doesn't need to touch them to mislead them. He can just rub the path when no ant is crossing it. This seemed to misguide the ants a bit. But most ants are programmed to deal with such uncertainties. Hence, I guessed that this wouldn't hurt them much. The kid had a lot of fun later and looked happy. I guess he learnt something about biology and group behavior.

Nature friendly kids enjoy products that are made from natural substances like tomatoes.  (http://www.kissan.in/). Feel free to gift them products that have nutritional value. 

Gibbon- A new type of educational start up from Europe

Everyday I am learning new ways of using internet for more productive purposes. Recently I came across a start-up called Gibbon based out of Europe. This is a new kind of start-up that aims to build playlists for learning.

The content of courses is crowdsourced. Anyone is free to start a course and curate contents from the web. There is no limit on the size of lessons. However, users will not be able to upload files or share pdf/ppt files. URLs which have files are also not allowed.

Gibbon was also featured on Techcrunch recently. There are a few good courses on lean startup and user experience/design. If you are interested, you can enroll for a couple of good lessons on Gibbon.co.

Close Encounters of the Smelly Kind

I have always wondered about smelly people. There are several reasons behind the smell. In most cases, it is because of excessive heat and sweat. In such cases, it may not be right to deal with a smelly person in a straight forward way. However, I have had encounters with certain people who were extremely reluctant to take bath on a daily basis. They just don't want to get inside a bathroom and run water on their bodies. Maybe they like the natural secretion of sweat better. This was an arguement given by a lazy friend.

One of my roommates in hostel skipped bath every few days. He wouldn't bother much and skip taking bath on atleast 7 days a month. The smell aggravated when he would skip bath two days in a row. We were in a relatively tropical climate. This added to the misery. I usually encountered the smell with the usage of room freshners, perfumes, agarbattis etc. The more I sprayed the freshner, he would understand that his smell was an issue to me. He would take bath as soon as possible. I talked to him about his habit of skipping bath. He told that he gained this habit in school when he would wake up too late and had to rush to catch his school bus. Nevertheless this was clearly a problem to me. I dealt it in a relatively smooth way without offending him (I hope so).

I hope he is taking bath every day now. If cold water is an issue to him, I would suggest Racold Instant Water Heater to him (https://www.facebook.com/racoldthermoltd).

Friday, February 14, 2014

Condition Serious Hai: Nahi Hai

There are many people who suffer from this syndrome called Seriousness. They are serious about the most unnecessary things on earth. I hate to say this, but I have seen a lot of elderly people affected with this serious syndrome. I narrate a true incident which took place when I was travelling by public transport in Bangalore. I carry laptop backpack everyday to office. On this particular day, I boarded a normal bus. It was about 6:30 PM and the bus was quite crowded. I accidentally brushed an elderly gentleman with my laptop bag.

The gentleman asked me to proceed towards the end of the bus in a rude manner. Without thinking, I immediately fell to his feet and started apologizing dramatically.I don't understand why I did this because I am usually a very introverted person who avoids conversation with unknown people.
 I thought this would soothe his serious nerves. But, boy I was wrong. This seemed to enrage him further. But the seriousness of the situation turned comical when people in the bus started laughing. My intention was never to hurt the gentleman.

I think, I just wanted to show that people still have a sense of humor in this busy world today. Later I apologized to the gentleman about my behavior and told him that I was a part of the local laughing club when I was young. My actions could be due to this. He said it was okay and he missed the humor that used to be a common affair in his younger days. He  talked for a few minutes about his family.

To get rid of unnecessary seriousness from your life visit:

Latticework: The New Investing by Robert Hagstorm

I have been looking for Latticework: The new Investing pdf for quite a while now. However I have been unsuccessful. But after a long search, I came to understand that the book is available under a new title "Investing: The last liberal art". I searched on Google books and was able to read about 20% of the book. I can say, read this book only if you are looking for worldly wisdom and multi-disciplinary areas. The book draws from various fields like sociology, physics, psychology, mathematics etc. 

At times, you may wonder if all this makes sense. There is no tangible benefit of reading Latticework: The new Investing pdf which translates directly into your stock analysis or performance. However, the book is worth a read. If you are unable to access the old title, keep searching for Investing: The last liberal art pdf. Robert Hagstorm's other books such as "The Warren Buffett Way" and "The Warren Buffett Portfolio" are easily available in most stores and also in pdf form. 

For people interested to know more about the book Investing: The last liberal art pdf, please visit the website below:

The above is a presentation given by Hagstorm at Gabelli Center for Global Investment Analysis. 

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Knowledge is Great: Study in UK

Several times, when I plan to study abroad, United Kingdom comes to my mind. There is something about this country's educational system that attracts me. Probably because many leaders like Gandhiji studied in UK. But when I think of a subject to specialize in, Scotland comes to my head. One thing, I always avoid crowded places. I am also looking for an innovative course that finds relevance in the next three to four decades. The University of my Choice would be University of Edinburgh and the subject of my choice would be Carbon Finance.

There are several reasons why I would like to pursue this course. One of the main reasons is my fascination with environmental policies, finance and risk management. I believe that, the Carbon Finance course blends these areas seamlessly. I am also of the opinion that Carbon Management will be a key issue of interest in the coming decades. I was inspired by the documentary movie by Al Gore "The Inconvenient Truth". So in short, I see this course preparing me and fulfilling my interest in issues like climate change, Energy Finance and other relevant areas.  I would like to study full-time in Scotland. I am also a scotch connoisseur. I feel spending time in Scotland will also be a great experience.  

Place - University of Edinburgh
Subject- Carbon Finance

Reasons- Interest in subject (Climate change and Finance), Want to spend time in Scotland