Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

December 21, 2008

life is not about.. chasing a ”Maya Mrig”, golden deer of corporate ladder.

myself these days…

March 6, 2008

#There are some people who will feel happy to put me in cage and hang me over pacific ocean.

#I have ended some ‘relations’ I know it’s cruel , callous and insensitive in a way , but I need to end what’s not working out , atleast for me. I know I am being bad by cutting off from it . Makes me a not-so-nice guy .I think romantic love is an illusion created by exaggerated hormone play which serves the movie industry and misleads the impressionable youth .

The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.

May 4, 2007

“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.”
– Bertrand Russel

Golden gate properties yahoo group

April 14, 2007

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/golden_blossom_appartment/

This messageboard has been created to serve as a forum for discussion of various issues with respect to the construction and maintainence of apartments and facilities in Golden Blossom Apartments of Golden Gate Properties at Close to the abode of Sri Satya Sai Baba(near ITPL,Whitefield), Bangalore.

blossom

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/golden_blossom_appartment/

This Group will help all the prospective residents of Golden Gate Blossom apartments to come close and be a close knit family. The main aim of this group being to exchange ideas on making our apartments a great place to live.

Why Product-making companies?

April 2, 2007

I insist on high tech product making companies for India. No matter what we do with our IT-ITES sector, we will not scale dramatically to be able to become an economic power. The GDP of India in 2005 is $720B of which the IT-ITES sector contributes less than 3.2% (it has improved in 2006 to approximately 4.5%). According to report from Goldman Sachs, Indian PPP measure of GDP will exceed that of US in 2038 and will be at approximately $23 trillion.

How do we get there from here? Do we just sit back and hope our current IT-ITES sector, which is primarily driven by services, will deliver us there or do we really take this as a dream and try to make it real or may be even make it sooner?

Only a technology-product making company can add the right kind of money into India at a faster and quicker pace using smaller manpower. Just look at some of the statistics here (mostly from 2005):
Total output of Indian software industry for 2005 is $22.6 B (and for 2006 it is slated at $40B or little more).
The number of people directly employed by Indian IT-ITES sector is 1.3 million.
India is currently producing approximately 180,000 engineers for IT-ITES sector.
The rate of increase in output of employees is currently at 5.5% increase from previous year.
Assuming a steady increase for the next five years, the output in year 2010 would be approximately 220,000.

According to NASSCOM, India is poised to make $70 B in 2009 with a workforce of 2.2 million. This projection assumes that each employee with earn approximately $32,000 in 2009 while it is approximately $22,000 in 2005.

Now look at this for comparison:
Microsoft currently makes $40 B with 60,000 employees while Nokia makes $40 B with 40,000 employees. (each employee approximately makes $600,000 to $1M).
These two companies alone with a work force of 100,000 (in 2005) make more than the projected output for India in 2009 (with 2.2 million workforce).

No matter what we do, contribution of IT-ITES will be marginal in contribution towards Indian GDP unless something dramatic happens. And that can happen only with more technology-product making companies.

Case of technology-product making companies

How do you think most developed countries have been able to remain competitive? According to NSF (National Science Foundation, USA), “High-technology industries are driving economic growth around the world”. According to the Global Insight World Industry Service database, “the global market for high-technology goods is growing at a faster rate than for other manufactured goods”.

“Even during the recent, slow-growth, ‘post-bubble’ period (2000–03), high-technology industry continued to lead global growth at about four times the rate of all other manufacturing industries.”

According to NRC, Hamburg Institute for Economic Research, and Kiel Institute for World Economics 1996, “High-technology industries are R&D intensive; R&D leads to innovation, and firms that innovate tend to gain market share, create new product markets, and use resources more productively. These industries tend to develop high value-added products, tend to export more, and, on average, pay higher salaries than other manufacturing industries. Moreover, industrial R&D performed by high-technology industries benefits other commercial sectors by developing new products, machinery, and processes that increase productivity and expand business activity.”

What is the output of high-technology sector in each of these countries?
In India, high-technology sector accounted for 2.0% in 1980, 3.7% in 1990, 4.8% in 2000, and 4.8% in 2003.
In US, for 1980s it was 11% of total domestic production, in 1990s it was 13.5%, in 2000, it was 27%. In 2003, it is estimated at 34.2%.
In Japan, it was 17% of total Japanese domestic production in 2000. In 2003, it is estimated at 15.7%.
In EU, it increases from 9.5% in 1980 to 11% in 1990 to 13.2% in 2000. In 2003, it is estimated at 13.4%.
Countries like Taiwan (28.5% in 2003), Ireland (more than 50% in 2003) and China (19% in 2003) fare much better than India.

The case is strong for technology-product making companies. So, what are we going to do about it?

Why we don’t have product-making companies?

April 2, 2007

I have already written an article called, ‘Why Product-making companies?’ Before I start writing on what we need to do, I would like to talk about some of the most important reasons that curtail us from spawning product-making companies. Some of them are obvious- history, post-independent economic policies, our social structure, etc. But I don’t like to list 10+ different reasons for each problem. I like to concentrate on 2-3 top reasons. Here, I list what I think is the top reason why we don’t have product-making technology companies.

Our obsession with stars and brands

I agree stars are important. It’s the obsession with those stars where I see the problem. We (as Indians) are obsessed with stars and brands. We don’t need to look deep to realize this about us. Our Cinema (unabashedly called ‘Bollywood’) and Cricket has many examples. The whole focus is on one or two individuals while the rest are completely unknown. It applies to our technology space as well. IITs are a brand. Therefore, anything to do with technology in India is referred to IITs while hundreds of universities and other institutes get no mention at all. If an IITian starts a paan shop, the heading goes, “The IITian left his cushy job to start a paan shop right across the street…” If they start some dumb political party, the article reads, “The IITians instead of going to US have sacrificed their careers to start a political party to better India…” A mere contraption of no significance from IITian gets the attention of starving media. This media is more interested in writing ‘This IITian has done…” than writing what he has actually done. The media is only feeding into our own obsessions. They reflect our sentiments- that of ordinary people, the families, and the societies.

The same is true of our software-services companies. Why we did not look at other important industries is because these services companies were hogging the limelight for more than 20 years now. In fact, they are hogging the complete light while the rest of the industry is languishing in the dark. Bangalore, which is supposedly the ‘Silicon Valley of India’ (which I don’t agree at all), has lavish office spaces (look at Infosys and ITPL) which almost resemble a developed world. These are the same office spaces which have been glorified by the likes of Thomas Friedman (who has added more fuel to the celebration of our mediocrity). On the other hand, the same Bangalore provides extremely worse conditions to the industrial sectors where hardware and manufacturing houses are located. I have visited some of these manufacturing places- they don’t have roads, they are connected by muddy paths which have huge cracks in the middle, they don’t have water or electricity and this place looks like a remote village of India in the 16th century. The attention of whole of media, political administration, elite, institutions, investors, has been directed towards software-services companies while other industries do not get basic amenities. Software-services companies get lands at very low price; they get tax-holidays, exporting and importing is easy for them. Meanwhile, the manufacturing and other industry of India is putting with policies of old economy. Here is what I have to say to these software-services companies:

‘Thank you, you have done a good job of re-branding India. You have changed our image from being a land of snake charmers to the land of software programmers’. But my thanks stops right there. ‘You are also the culprit of taking away complete attention from other important industry. You rob us of passion of the young minds to make them Xerox machines. Your growth is welcome, but its avarice and appetite is overwhelming. We are not able to proceed to the next step. Our fear is we will get stuck right here’. There are examples galore where many countries got stuck to a label and that actually turned out to be their doom. South American countries which rode the wave of globalization have now realized that they got ‘stuck’ at being providers of raw material to the Western world. East Asian countries like Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, etc, are faced with similar situation, where the competition from Taiwan and China has robbed them of their advantage of being the manufacturing houses. There is danger in being slotted that way. ‘We don’t want to be slotted that way.’

What our media, the analysts, the writers, etc, did in their over-enthusiasm and over-excitement is a great damage to India. They said, ‘Since we completely skipped industrial revolution, there was no need to go back to that.’ They insisted on continuing with services industry and professed it was good enough for India. They cited some examples (which are actually very rare) of product-making companies (like IBM) moving to take up services, and justified their jobs and their companies. The media lapped it up, furthered this notion, and made it a ground rule for India. Their message was: ‘If West has products and technology, China has manufacturing, we in India have services!’ The VCs furthered it, the investors furthered it, the entrepreneurs furthered it, and even the government joined hands. Thomas Friedman made millions selling the same idea back to India while making sure he and his country continued to dominate the technology markets.

Young minds of India, even those with passion and enthusiasm to create and innovate, get bogged down by the pressures- created by us- the media, the elite writers, the parents, the teachers. They end up taking up a career at Infosys and Wipro just because of its brand. Seven years of working there, he is not good for a product making company anymore. He is already institutionalized. Only few make it out of that vicious cycle only to face even bigger issues that confront them.

As a step one, we need ground breaking examples. To unshackle ourselves of this casteist mentality where in we accept our position in the hierarchy of technology businesses, where we get slotted into one type of industry by the virtue of what our ancestors did. These examples have to be the tough ones. They have to ride their boat against the strong tide. But they have to do it. I see some companies around me taking up this struggle, it’s a long way to go, but I also see that once one case gets successful, suddenly there will be new articles written and soon India will be seen differently.

The industry (even those involved in software-services) needs to consciously promote product-making companies. Is there a vested interest? Yes, there is. No nation, no industry, no man can make loads of money for himself while the rest around him are paupers. It just doesn’t work. Such disparities are not sustainable. One has to create an ecosystem. Those in the ecosystem need to be making loads of money. That money has to translate to the societies and communities that we live in. That’s when we can go the next higher level of making more monies. A society which has very few stars while the rest are all paupers is not a sustainable system. Even the software services companies will benefit if there is technology product making company ecosystem in India. Where would I want to outsource my work when we become a successful product making company? To other Indian software services companies, of course!

DEMIGODS AND THE DARK SIDE OF MOON (Tragedy of IITs)

July 27, 2006

The glamour associated with IIT’s (Indian Institutes of Technology) has grown over the years. IITs themselves have added to the hype to some degree, while the rest of it has been built up on one hand by the large number of coaching institutes that charge an exorbitant fee for helping one gain entry through the pearly gates of Joint Entrance Examination (JEE). On the other hand, the media plays its role in contributing to the hype by dutifully printing success stories of ex-IITians in USA and by highlighting the fancy astronomical salaries that are given away by companies falling over one another to get hold of the prized catch. All this hype has indeed helped build the myth of demigod around an IITian.

Just as every dark cloud has a silver lining, every moon has a dark side. The halo of divinity built around the IITian has a dark side which is often ignored. It is important to look at this dark side to comprehend the process of assimilation (or rather of non-assimilation) of the so-called super-brains into Indian society.

A quick glance at the placement scenario at most IIT’s reveals a very interesting picture. A majority of B.Tech.’s and M.Tech.’s irrespective of their branch of study take up jobs at some software company or the other. Informal discussions with students reveal that the only options available to a passing out B.Tech. can be summed up as follows:

  1. Join an Indian software company
  2. Join a foreign software company
  3. Go to USA for further studies
  4. Join one of the IIM’s for management studies
  5. Plan a career in academics and join for M.Tech. and later Ph.D. at IIT (A negligible miniscule minority takes this option)

The option of working for an Indian company in the field of one’s specialization is almost non-existent. The number of non-software Indian companies (excluding multinationals) that have been coming to IITs for campus recruitment has been declining over the years. Even among the ones who are still coming, almost no companies are willing to give any extra credit for the skills and abilities of an IIT graduate at the outset. Almost always, an IIT graduate is treated at par with the graduate of a nondescript engineering college. The net result of these factors is that the graduate from IIT does not go to the Indian company in his field of specialization and chooses one of the options mentioned above.

A look at the options outlined makes it clear that except for the last two options, the IIT graduate is always working for foreigners either directly or indirectly. Tata Consultancy, Wipro, Infosys and other software majors, who employ hordes of IIT engineers, may be bringing sackfuls of foreign exchange into the country but their contribution to national growth is nominal. These software majors are involved in “serving the European and American market”, which is just an euphemism for “serving the countries of Europe and America”. It does not take long for the IIT engineer to realize that he/she is working for the white man and it will be more profitable for him to be a direct slave of the white man rather than work through these middlemen. So he/she makes a few ‘smart’ career moves and is soon out of the clutches of the middlemen and is directly bowing to the white man.

The option of going for an IIM education delays the above process by a couple of years. The egalitarian approach adopted by majority of Indian industry in the matter of treating IIT product at par with every shady engineering college does not spare the IIT-IIM product either. In fact the forces that operate against the IIT graduate are much more sharply focused against the IIT-IIM product. The net result once again is of the IIT-IIM product landing into the service of the white man.

If it was a seminar presentation or a political forum, this would be the appropriate stage to launch into a bout of breast-beating about how the Indian Institutes of Technology have turned into training centres for the developed countries and blame the IITian for his lack of patriotism and for wasting the country’s resources by not working for the technological development of the country. Educationists, ministers, governors and such other worthies have done it so often that one does not need to repeat it. Every time this exercise of blaming the IITian is carried out, the IITian feels an intense guilt and instead of self-defence either buries his head in sand or does some act of altruism to wash off his guilt. What is however needed is to present the problems faced by IITian in working as an engineer in India in the field of his specialization. It is also necessary to highlight the pains that an IITian has to undergo.

A few words about an IITian’s pains after passing out. For those who decide to move out of the country, the separation from one’s home country and a life of being condemned to a second class citizen status with all the racial slurs is indeed a painful experience. This pain becomes visible only when one discusses racism in a drawing room in USA or Europe. The same people who cry about it abroad will put up a facade of glorious achievements when visiting India. One should not blame them for this small safety mechanism that enables them to retain their sanity.

The other pain of almost every other IITian is that almost as soon as one passes out of IIT, one has to write off all the knowledge acquired at IIT and start afresh. This act of forced self-annihilation is more tragic than one can imagine. Years of toil and tears are washed away and one stands with no strengths except one’s grit, determination and intelligence. Whether one joins a software company or goes for a management degree, it is a one-way street of elimination of one’s own past self-identity. Trained as a mechanical engineer, five years later in the software trade one is not recognized as a mechanical engineer and is asked to acquire some fresh testimonials that prove one’s worth. If he fails to acquire such fresh proofs of capability, the industry and society declare him to be a worthless person. For someone getting into the field of management, the picture is not much different. After wiping out the competitive advantage of the skills and knowledge acquired at IIT, a two year course can take you only so far and no further. The insecurity of such a situation and the pressure of keeping up with the demigod image of an IITian in one’s own eyes and in the eyes of one’s family and peers is an experience that cannot be described by words.

After discussing the pains of those who go abroad and of those who leave their field of specialization, it may well be proper to look at the fate of the small minority of IITians that decides to remain in India and sticks to the field of specialization. Exceptions aside, this minority of IIT graduates is neither very successful professionally nor has any major financial achievements. A few decades after passing out, members of this group are generally happy earning a living, supporting a family, buying a car, building a small house or sending one’s child to IIT. There can be a number of explanations for the mediocre performance of a group that should logically have been the rising stars of India’s industry. However, the two main reasons that can be pointed are (a) absence of meritocracy in Indian industry (b) the minority status of India-settled IITian that excludes him from all old boys networks.

Indian private industry is primarily family controlled where power equations arise from caste and family considerations rather than from any professional competence. Technology is seen at best as a handmaid that can be employed to do the dirty work. A creative engineer or designer is not considered an asset but is often considered a nuisance who dares to challenge the established order of things and has an inflated self-opinion. The author’s article “Indian Talent Caught In The Cobwebs” discusses the problem at length. Public sector is worse because of the system of caste-based reservations and time-bound promotions along with the supremacy of generalists (read IAS officers). In such situations, competence is a liability rather than an asset. A competent person finds himself in a minority and is persecuted by the incompetent majority who fear his analytic and intellectual strengths.

Persecution faced by IITians in India is often a part of the internal politicking that goes on in most organizations. In this game, IITian is especially at a disadvantage since he does not have the support of an old-boys network to help him. The reasons for the absence of an old-boys network among IITians working in non-software sector in India are twofold. First of course is the strong individualistic streak in an IITian that prevents him from seeking help even when in dire need. The other reason is the absence of sufficient numbers of IITians across the country. More often than not if an IITian interacts with any organization the probability of interacting with an IITian at the other side of the table is so low that one does not even try to seek such connections. On the other hand if the person at the other side of the table is from any other engineering college, disclosing that one is an IIT graduate can only make matters difficult since this is likely to prod the other person to use the opportunity to get vicious pleasure by hitting the IITian where it hurts most.

This sub-conscious psychology is very often the underlying theme of the dynamics of interaction between a graduate of one of the premium institutes and a product from a non-premium engineering college. The sentiment is – “Well, you made it through JEE and I did not but so what? Now I am going to settle the score by putting you down and dancing while you grimace with pain.” It may sound an exaggeration when one puts it in this fashion. Normally, the sub-conscious feelings are well covered and expressed in a polite way. Settling scores may take the extreme form of hitting below the belt or may just be very subtle in form of noncooperation or backbiting or taking decisions that seem very businesslike on the surface e.g. going for campus recruitment to one’s own alma mater, the shady engineering college run by the local politician-cum-don, rather than to IIT.

It should come as no surprise that the list of companies coming to IIT for campus recruitment does not include many Indian non-software companies where the strings are controlled by non-IIT engineers. This problem gets compounded a few years down the line. An IITian with two decades or so of non-software experience in India may become almost an untouchable since at this stage all job changes are made through a network of contacts rather than through institutional systems like campus recruitment. That is the greatest irony and tragedy of modern India. A person who starts at seventeen as a demigod faces the fear of unemployment and forced retirement just a few years later.

This is not a personal tragedy of one individual or a group of individuals. This is a tragedy for the country as a whole. It shows the failure of the country to evolve systems to make use of the talent of the country. While the seminar circuit has witnessed many tears being shed in the name of brain drain, it is time that the country realized that there is something rotten in the way it treats its best people. It is also time that IIT’s and IITian’s devoted some time to analyze the problems faced by the talented in the country rather than just enjoy the fool’s paradise created by the media hype.

Banks likely to hike car and home loan rates again

July 25, 2006

Congress does what it can do best.For 50 years after independence, congress made sure that the midle class dissappeared.Only the rich(like themselves) and the poor(rest of the country )remained.Now after accidentally coming back to power,they will ensure that the the middle class which got a slight assistance during NDA rule is totally anhiliated.This is easily achieved by raising service tax(and increasing heads to charge it on),higher interest, greater income for govt by charging higher import /excise levies on oil thereby artificially raising pump prices(50%of what we pay for fuel goes as taxes),general price increase etc.

 

 who said our PM and FM are skilled economists ? They just have bunch of degrees which sound good to hear but their performance is absolutely poor !

 

Mr. Vajpayee didn’t have any degree in economics but Indian economy did much better during his NDA regime.

 

 when BJP said “Its feel good” every body was crying. Now i hope ppl will understand what Feel Good means.
For me NDA regime was i felt better so i went out and cast my Vote. If all of us have done the same, rather than Analysing poll results , situation have been not this worst. I am missing Atal Ji.

 

no one thinks of the middle class…..this government only want to drink our blood…..Rob the middle class, pocket a portion and throw the left overs to the poor……thats what the current politicians are doing…..

 

Are not we living in false paradise,RBI/FM says where we increase interest rate to control inflation.increase of interest rate will mean difficulty for small industry to get easy finance,they will decrease investment, economical activity will decrease.which will result into lesser buying power of consumer/which causes less demand for consumer commodity and control of inflation.

Hello world!

June 27, 2006

well i am avinash.