Stopping Climate Change Needs Short Term Targets

Al Gore’s speech yesterday was noteworthy. America, he said, faces three big problems – the economy, national security and climate change – all three of them have the same solution – replace fossil fuels. He said that the US must set a 10 year target of producing 100% of its electricity requirements from renewable and carbon-free sources.

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New Look for the Blog

As you will notice, 6AMP has a new look. The old theme worked well, but I was tiring of it. The new WordPress theme is called Statement and is from Blogoh!Blog that I was happy to learn is now run by Jai Nischal Verma of Delhi.

The theme is clean and functional but easy on the eye. Migrating to the new theme required some work, but no major challenges. Had to figure out how to edit a psd file without having to buy Photoshop. GIMP did the trick.

I think I have everything working. Let me know if you find anything broken.

Farewell Facebook

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I finally did it. I deleted my Facebook account. New York Times had an article about this [link]. A little bit of effort and some waiting and I got it done. I am now permanently out of the house of Facebook.

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Chilka Lake Photos

Over my winter vacation trip to India we visited Chilka Lake. It’s India’s largest salt water lake and home to many migratory birds. Beautiful place. Unfortunately not very well developed for tourism (or fortunately, depending upon your perspective). Some photos follow. If anyone knows what that beautiful moth is called please leave a comment.

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The Perfect Notebook

Rubberband NotebookOne of the few old world habits that I stubbornly stick with is writing with a fountain pen. I don’t write nearly as much as I type, but when I do, l like the feel of a good ink nib against paper. It helps me think better, or so it seems.

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My 2008 Wish “Less”

A very happy new year to all my readers. May you and your loved ones have a joyful 2008.

Wish lists are neat things. Unlike new year resolutions, they involve no effort on your part. And unlike predictions for the new year, you can’t be wrong about them. So I thought I would draw up a wish list and share it with my readers. Perhaps they could then add their own candidates for the wish list and then we could have a reality TV show where people from around India SMS (at premium rates) their wish list candidates and a panel of distinguished judges help us short list ten WLCs (Wish List Candidates) which we then take to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who tells us that he can do nothing about them unless Prakash Karat and Sonia Gandhi agree on each one of them.

Seemed like an exercise in futility so I decided not to do a wish list. Instead here is a “Wish Less”. It is based upon the premise that we already have too much of everything.

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Survivorship Bias and Godmen

I am in the middle of Fooled by Randomness by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. He talks about how we tend to draw the wrong conclusions about mutual fund performance by looking at the historical performance of today’s mutual funds. We don’t include the performance of all the funds that were closed or merged, generally on account of poor performance, because they aren’t around. This is called Survivorship Bias.

I find that Survivorship Bias is very useful in explaining the Godman phenomenon as well.

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Contaminated Food

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The ongoing saga of contaminated toothpaste and food imports from China into the US is in its third month but is far from over.

For those of you who haven’t heard about it here’s what’s been happening.

In October 2006, at least 100 people in Panama died from cough syrup contaminated with diethylene glycol, a poisonous low cost substitute for glycerine. In May 2007 the contaminated glycerine was traced back to its Chinese manufacturer Taixing Glycerine Factory. The same month, the US FDA issues guidance to the industry to test products containing glycerine for diethylene glycol. On June 8, the FDA issued a ‘toothpaste FAQ’ for the general public.

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Wanted: Technical Architect and Project Manager

We’re building a Search Tools team in Mumbai.

If you are a Technical Architect with experience in Object-Oriented Design, Test Driven Development and Agile Practices, drop us a line. For the same team we are also looking for a Project Manager and Software Developers.

In our hiring, we look for talented people who are passionate about work and life. Our offices are in Mindspace, an office complex in Malad (W) in Mumbai. For our employees who choose to live in Malad, the quality of life is great. All the advantages of city life in a metro, with very short commutes (think lunch at home).

More details on the careers section of our website. Apply directly or write to me via the Contact page on this blog. Be sure to attach your resume or a summary of your experience.