Great Thoughts
The world
THE WORLD is increasingly designed to depress us. Happiness isn’t very good for the economy. If we were with what we had, why would we need more? How do you sell an anti-ageing moisturiser? You make someone worry about ageing. How do you get people to yote for a political party? You make them worry about immigration. How do you get them to buy insurance? By making them worry about everything. How do you get them to have plastic surgery? By highlighting their physical laws. How do you get them to watch a TV show?’ By making them worry about missing out.How do you get them to buy a new smartphone? By making them feel like they are being left behind. To be calm becomes a kind of revolutionary act.To be happy with your own non-upgraded existence.To be comfortable with our messy, human sclves,would not be good for business.
-- Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig
Have Breakfast or Breakfast
By Y. L. R. Moorthi
(Management Views from IIMB is an exclusive column written every two weeks for india.wsj.com by faculty members of the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore.)
Who sells the largest number of cameras in India? Your guess is likely to be Sony, Canon or Nikon. Answer is none of the above. The winner is Nokia, whose main line of business in India is not cameras but cell phones.

Reason being cameras bundled with cellphones are outselling standalone cameras. Now, what prevents the cell phone from replacing the camera outright? Nothing at all. One can only hope the Sonys and Canons are taking note.Try this. Who runs the biggest in music business in India? You think it is HMV Sa-Re-Ga-Ma? Sorry. The answer is Airtel. By selling caller tunes (that play for 30 seconds) Airtel earns more than what music companies make by selling music albums (that run for hours). Incidentally Airtel is not in the music business. It is the mobile service provider with the largest subscriber base in India. That sort of a competitor is difficult to detect, even more difficult to beat (because by the time you have identified him he has already gone past you). But if you imagine that Nokia and Bharti (Airtel's parent) are breathing easy, you can't be far from the truth.

Nokia confessed that they missed the smart phone bus. They admit that Apple's iPhone and Google's Android can make life difficult in future. But you never thought Google was a mobile company, did you? If these illustrations mean anything, there is a bigger game unfolding. It is not so much about mobile or music or camera or emails? The "Mahabharat" (the great Indian epic battle) is about "what is tomorrow's personal digital device?" Will it be a souped up mobile or a palmtop with a telephone? All these are little wars that add up to that big battle. Hiding behind all these wars is a gem of a question - "who is my competitor?"

Once in a while, to intrigue my students I toss a question at them. "What Apple did to Sony, Sony did to Kodak, explain?" The smart ones get the answer almost immediately. Sony defined its market as audio (music from the walkman). They never expected an IT company like Apple to encroach into their audio domain. Come to think of it, is it really surprising? Apple as a computer maker has both audio and video capabilities. So what made Sony think Kodak won't compete on pure audio? "Elementary Watson". Also, Kodak defined its business in film cameras, Sony defines its businesses as "digital."

In the digital camera market, the two products perfectly meshed. Kodak was torn between going digital and sacrificing money on camera film or staying with films and getting left behind in digital technology. Left undecided, it lost in both. It had to. It did not ask the question "who is my competitor for tomorrow?" The same was true for IBM whose mainframe revenue prevented it from seeing the PC. The same was true of Bill Gates who declared "internet is a fad!" and then turned around to bundle the browser with windows to bury Netscape. The point is not who is today's competitor. Today's competitor is obvious. Tomorrow's is not.

In 2008, who was the toughest competitor to British Airways in India? Singapore Airlines? Better still, Indian Airlines? Maybe, but there are better answers. There are competitors that can hurt all these airlines and others not mentioned. The answer is videoconferencing and telepresence services of HP and Cisco. Travel dropped due to recession. Senior IT executives in India and abroad were compelled by their head quarters to use videoconferencing to shrink travel budget. So much so, that the mad scramble for American visas from Indian techies was nowhere in sight in 2008. (India has a quota of something like 65,000 visas to the U.S. They were going a-begging. Blame it on the recession!). So far so good. But to think that the airlines will be back in business post recession is something I would not bet on. In short term, yes. In the long term, a resounding no. Remember, if there is one place where Newton's law of gravity is applicable besides physics it is in electronic hardware. Between 1977 and 1991 the prices of the now dead VCR (parent of Blue-Ray disc player) crashed to one-third of its original level in India. PC's prices dropped. If this trend repeats then telepresence prices will also crash. Imagine the fate of airlines then. As it is, not many are making money. Then it will surely be RIP!

India has two passions. Films and cricket. The two markets were distinctly different. So were the icons. The cricket gods were Sachin and Sehwag. The filmi gods were the Khans (Aamir Khan, Shah Rukh Khan and the other Khans who followed suit). That was, when cricket was fundamentally test cricket or at best 50 over cricket. Then came IPL and the two markets collapsed into one. IPL brought cricket down to 20 overs. Suddenly an IPL match was reduced to the length of a three-hour movie. Cricket became film's competitor. On the eve of IPL matches, movie halls ran empty. Desperate multiplex owners requisitioned the rights for screening IPL matches at movie halls to hang on to the audience. If IPL were to become the mainstay of cricket, as it is likely to be, films have to sequence their releases so as to not clash with IPL matches. As far as the audience is concerned, both are a three- hour "tamasha" (entertainment). Cricket season might push films out of the market.

Look at the products that vanished from India in the last 20 years. When did you last see a black and white movie? When did you last use a fountain pen? When did you last type on a typewriter? The answer for all the above is "I don't remember!" For some time, there was a mild substitute for the typewriter called electronic typewriter that had a limited memory. Then came the computer and mowed them all. Today, most technologically challenged guys like me use the computer as an upgraded typewriter. Typewriters per se are nowhere to be seen.

One last illustration. 20 years back what were Indians using to wake them up in the morning? The answer is an "alarm clock." The alarm clock was a monster made of mechanical springs. It had to be physically keyed every day to keep it running. It made so much noise by way of alarm, that it woke you up and the rest of the colony. Then came quartz clocks, which were sleeker. They were much more gentle though still quaintly called "alarms." What do we use today for waking up in the morning? Cell phone! An entire industry of clocks disappeared without warning, thanks to cell phones. Big watch companies like Titan were the losers. You never know in which bush your competitor is hiding!

On a lighter vein, who are the competitors for authors? Joke spewing machines? (Steve Wozniak, the co-founder of Apple, himself a Pole, tagged a Polish joke telling machine to a telephone, much to the mirth of Silicon Valley). Or will the competition be story telling robots? Future is scary!

The boss of an IT company once said something interesting about the animal called competition. He said "Have breakfast or be breakfast". That sums it up rather neatly.

Complied by : Giri Chaturvedi
Shout
'Why do we shout in anger?'
a saint asked his disciples.
Why do people shout at each other when they are upset?' His disciples thought for a while. One of them said, 'because we lose our calm, we shout for that.'
'But why do you shout when the other person is just next to you?' asked the saint. Is it not possible to speak to him or her with a soft voice? Why do you shout at a person when you are angry?
Disciples gave some other answers but none satisfied the saint.
Finally he explained. When two people are angry at each other, their hearts distance a lot. To cover that distance they must shout to be able to hear each other. The angrier they are, the stronger they will have to shout to hear each other through that great distance. Then the saint asked, 'What happens when two people fall in love? They do not shout at each other but talk softly, why? Because their hearts are very close. The distance between them is very small. The saint continued, 'when they love each other even more, what happens? They do not speak, only whisper and they get even closer to each other in their love. Finally they even need not whisper, they only look at each other and that is all. That is how close two people are when they love each other.
Chanakya Quotes
“A person should not be too honest. Straight trees are cut first and honest people are victimised first.”
“Even if a snake is not poisonous, it should pretend to be venomous.”
“The biggest guru-mantra is: Never share your secrets with anybody. It will destroy you.”
“There is some self-interest behind every friendship. There is no Friendship without self-interests. This is a bitter truth..”
“As soon as the fear approaches near, attack and destroy it.”
“Once you start a working on something don’t be afraid of failure and don’t abandon it. People who work sincerely are the happiest.”
“Before you start some work, always ask yourself three questions — Why am I doing it, what the results might be and will I be successful. Only when you think deeply and find satisfactory answers to these questions, go ahed.”
“The fragrance of flowers spreads only in the direction of the wind. But the goodness of a man spreads in all directions.”
“A man is great by deeds, not by birth.”
“Treat your kid like a darling for the first five years.
For the next five years, scold them.
By the time they turn sixteen, treat them like a friend.
Your grown up children are your best friends.”
“Books are as useful to a stupid person
as a mirror is useful to a blind person.”
“Education is the best friend. An educated person is respected everywhere.
Education beats the beauty and the youth.”
“Life ends; when you stop Dreaming, Hope ends; when you stop Believing, Love ends; when you stop Caring, And Friendship; ends when you stop Sharing”
Have a peaceful Life
Once Buddha was walking from one town to another town with a few of his followers. This was in the initial days. While they were traveling, they happened to pass a lake. They stopped there and Buddha told one of his disciples, “I am thirsty. Do get me some water from that lake there.” The disciple walked up to the lake. When he reached it, he noticed that right at that moment, a bullock cart started crossing through the lake. As a result, the water became very muddy, very turbid. The disciple thought, “How can I give this muddy water to Buddha to drink!” So he came back and told Buddha, “The water in there is very muddy. I don’t think it is fit to drink.” After about half an hour, again Buddha asked the same disciple to go back to the lake and get him some water to drink. The disciple obediently went back to the lake. This time too he found that the lake was muddy. He returned and informed Buddha about the same. After sometime, again Buddha asked the same disciple to go back. The disciple reached the lake to find the lake absolutely clean and clear with pure water in it. The mud had settled down and the water above it looked fit to be had. So he collected some water in a pot and brought it to Buddha.

Buddha looked at the water, and then he looked up at the disciple and said, “See what you did to make the water clean. You let it be and the mud settled down on its own and you got clear water. Your mind is also like that! When it is disturbed, just let it be. Give it a little time. It will settle down on its own. You don’t have to put in any effort to calm it down. It will happen. It is effortless.” What did Buddha emphasize here? He said, “It is effortless.” Having ‘Peace of Mind’ is not a strenuous job; it is an effortless process!

This is a very beautiful story with lessons of STRENGTH and COURAGE to pursue and have loads of PATIENCE. In life everything goes on. Keep Going.
शायद ज़िन्दगी बदल रही है!!
जब मैं छोटा था, तब खेल भी अजीब हुआ करते थे,
छुपन छुपाई, लंगडी टांग, पोषम पा, कट थे केक, टिप्पी टीपी टाप.
अब इन्टरनेट, ऑफिस, फिल्म्स, से फुर्सत ही नहीं मिलती..
शायद ज़िन्दगी बदल रही है.
जिंदगी का सबसे बड़ा सच यही है.. जो अक्सर कबरिस्तान के बाहर बोर्ड पर
लिखा होता है.
“मंजिल तो यही थी, बस जिंदगी गुज़र गयी मेरी यहाँ आते आते”
जिंदगी का लम्हा बहुत छोटा सा है.
कल की कोई बुनियाद नहीं है
और आने वाला कल सिर्फ सपने मैं ही हैं.
अब बच गए इस पल मैं..
तमन्नाओ से भरे इस जिंदगी मैं हम सिर्फ भाग रहे हैं..
इस जिंदगी को जियो न की काटो
Ants Philosopy
All of us tend to look up to big people for lessons on how to get better. We are keen to learn the secrets of their success. But we forget that sometimes the biggest lessons in life come from the smallest folks around us. Now that’s a good lesson to remember!

Take ants for instance. Would you believe those small creatures can teach us how to live a better life? Jim Rohn – the great motivational guru – developed what he called the ‘Ants Philosophy’. He identified four key lessons from the behaviour of ants that can help us lead better lives. Jim Rohn is no more – but his messages continue to inspire. Here then, are the four lessons from Rohn’s ‘AntsPhilosophy’.

  • Ants never quit. Have you noticed how ants always look for a way around an obstacle? Put your finger in an ant’s path and it will try and go around it, or over it. It will keep looking for a way out. It won’t just stand there and stare. It won’t give up and go back. We should all learn to be like that. There will always be obstacles in our lives. The challenge is to keep trying, keep looking for alternative routes to get to our goals. Winston Churchill probably paraphrased the ant’s mindset when he offered this priceless advice “Never give up. Never, never give up!”
  • Ants think winter all summer. Remember the old story of the ant and the grasshopper? In the middle of summer, the ant was busy gathering food for the winter ahead – while the grasshopper was out having a good time. Ants know that summer – the good times – won’t last forever. Winters will come. That’s a good lesson to remember. When the going is good, don’t be so arrogant as to believe that a crisis or a setback cannot happen to you. Be good to other people. Save for a rainy day. Look ahead. And remember, good times may not last, but good people do.
  • Ants think summer all winter. As they suffer through the unbearable cold of the winter, ants keep reminding themselves that it won’t last forever, and that summer will soon be here. And with the first rays of the summer sun, the ants come out – ready to work, ready to play. When we are down and seemingly out, when we go through what looks like a never–ending crisis, it’s good to remind ourselves that this too shall pass. Good times will come, It’s important to retain a positive attitude, an attitude that says things will get better. As the old saying goes, tough times don’t last. Tough people do.
  • Ants do all they possibly can. How much food does an ant gather in summer? All that it possibly can! Now that’s a great work ethic to have. Do all you can! One ant doesn’t worry about how much food another ant is collecting. It does not sit back and wonder why it should have to work so hard. Nor does it complain about the poor pay! Ants just do their bit. They gather all the food they can. Success and happiness are usually the result of giving 100% – doing all you possibly can. If you look around you, you’ll find that successful people are those who just do all they possibly can.
Follow the four simple steps of Jim Rohn’s ‘Ant Philosophy’ – and you’ll see the difference. Don’t quit.
Every charitable act is a stepping stone toward heaven.
  • When Snake is alive, Snake eats Ants. When Snake is dead, Ants eat Snake. Time can turn at any time. Don’t neglect anyone in your life.
  • A good way to change someone’s attitude is to change your own. Because, the same sun that melts butter, also hardens clay! Life is as we think, so think beautifully.
  • Life is just like a sea, we are moving without an end. Nothing stays with us, what remains is just the memories of some people who touched us as Waves.
  • Never change your originality for the sake of others, because no one can play your role better than you. So be yourself, because whatever you are, YOU are the best.
  • Baby mosquito came back after 1st time flying. His mom asked him “How do you feel?” He replied “It was wonderful, Everyone was clapping for me!”
Now that’s “Positive Attitude”.
Only in Japan?
  • THE CALM
    Not a single visual of chest-beating or wild grief. Sorrow itself has been elevated.
  • THE DIGNITy
    Disciplined queues for water and groceries. Not a rough word or a crude gesture.
  • THE ABILITY
    The incredible architects, for instance. Buildings swayed but didn’t fall.
  • THE GRACE
    People bought only what they needed for the present, so everybody could get something.
  • THE ORDER
    No looting in shops. No honking and no overtaking on the roads. Just understanding.
  • THE SACRIFICE
    Fifty workers stayed back to pump sea water in the N–reactors. How will they ever be repaid?
  • THE TENDERNESS
    Restaurants cut prices. An unguarded ATM is left alone. The strong cared for the weak.
  • THE TRAINING
    The old and the children, everyone knew exactly what to do. And they did just that.
  • THE MEDIA
    They showed magnificent restraint in the bulletins. No silly reporters. Only calm reportage.
  • THE CONSCIENCE
    When the power went off in a store, people put things back on the shelves and left quietly.
Pearls of Wisdom from Bhisma to Yudhisthira from his death bed
  • After the victory of Pandavas over Kauravas at Kurushetra, Yudishthira was crowned as the king at Hastinapur. Before taking up the duties as a king, he asked Lord Krishna to explain the duties of a king to him. Krishna asked him to go to Bhisma lying on his bed of arrows to learn from him the true religion of a king. He went to him and requested for his advice. Bhisma gave him the following Commandments :
  • Always be up and doing. Never give way to lethargy and indolence. Destiny or fate alone cannot serve the purpose of a king. I assign topmost priority to human endeavour, as destiny is already preordained. Never get disheartened if obstacles and hurdles crop up in your way. Never get disheartened if obstacles and hurdles crop up in your way.
  • Truth is the greatest and the most precious ornament of a king. It ensures the faith and confidence of the people or subjects in their king. The king should be the very embodiment of virtues, as the people follow in the footsteps of their king. A king should be humble as well as ruthless, according to the need of the hour. He must change his stand and behaviour, according to the exigency of the situation. Too much chatting with servants is forbidden for a king.
  • There are seven organs of a State, king, minister, treasure, land or country, fort and army. He who acts against the interests of any one of the organs of the state deserves death whether he is a teacher or a friend.
  • He who goes stray out of arrogance and follows the evil ways must be punished by the king even though he is his teacher. Had we heeded this glorious advice of Bhisma, our country would have been the leader of the world and our people would have lived in peace and prosperity.
  • The eternal and perpetual duty of a king or the Government is to keep the people happy and satisfied. One should never give way to grief under any circumstances. All the riches of the world are fleeting. Nothing survives here. What you have is more important than what you have lost. Never grieve your losses. Grief cannot bring back your lost wealth.
  • He who feels jealous of others, soon loses his health, wealth and peace of mind.
  • Wealth is acquired by ceaseless efforts and industry. But even then, even then its nature is very fickle. So, great thinkers go in for renunciation of wealth.
  • All the pleasures and enjoyments of the world ultimately bring about the downfall of man. Few are the man born of noble parents who free themselves from the fleeting pleasures of flesh. Some man are so stupid that they lose their life for their greed of wealth.
  • When hoarding ends in depletion, life ends in death and meeting ends in parting; only a fool shall be enamoured of them.
  • It is an inevitable fact that one day, either a man gives up wealth or the wealth takes leave of a man. He who knows this fact, shall never be worried about wealth.
  • Man alone can control his senses, his mind and tongue. He who does not control them wisely is doomed to destruction. Valour and wisdom ensure success in this world as well as in the next world. None is ever victorious and none is ever vanquished. Victory and defeat are transitory and momentary. One should not take them to heart.
  • There is no teacher like a mother. The importance of a mother is ten times greater than that of a father.
  • The deed by which a son pleases his father; Brahmaji, the creator also pleased with that very deed.
  • The deed by which a son pleases his mother; the whole earth is also worshipped by that very deed. It simply means that serving a mother means serving the whole earth and serving the father means serving the creator.
  • The deed by which a disciple pleases his teacher, God too is pleased and worshipped with it.
  • The teacher, the mother and the father are ever worthy of respect and reverence. They must never be insulted.
  • It is good to speak the truth. There is no virtue greater than truth. But if a lie saves the life of a good person, it should be considered as truth. If by speaking the truth, you endanger the life of a person, it should be treated as a lie.
  • It is none but one’s true religion which brings about prosperity and salvation.
  • A sinner is already dead by the force of his evil deeds.
  • A deceitful person should be tackled in a deceitful way.
  • Those who serve their parents are freed from all sorrows and sufferings.
  • He who always speaks ill of others is a wolf in the guise of a man. He can never be in peace with himself.
  • Avoid the company of such a person for good. He who is not frightened of others nor does he frighten others and he who desires nothing and does not feel jealous of anyone is fit for self realisation.
  • The best gift or charity is to confer fearlessness upon beings.
  • A learned man never gets angry. He does not bind himself with any attachment. He is not tossed by grief if something goes wrong or against him. He is not overjoyed to get his favourite things. He is not grieved when faced with a financial crisis. He remains as steadfast as the Himalayas by virtue of his very nature.