Archive | March, 2011

Book Review : March 19, 2011

19 Mar

Few book reviews I have been reading or completed last week

It Happened in India
by Kishore Biyani, Dipayan Kashyap

A very bold narrative about Kishore Biyani’s journey while building Pantaloons and Big Bazaar. Gives a clear picture about how the EDLP based model started and succeeded in India and how foreign brands could not really realize the Indian middle class psyche

One thing that struck me about Kishore Biyani is that despite all negative remarks he always made a point to spend money on marketing and branding, probably because his target was the middle class whose decisions are mostly taken not logically but on emotions, feelings and liking. Low price was always there to support that fact

This book was with me for almost 2.5 years, but never read it completely. Last week decided would finish it.

Assholes Finish First
by Max Tucker

The mere mention of the name of this book might raise eyebrows and that’s what exactly what reading this book does. The author Max Tucker claims that every incident in this book and the previous book "I hope they serve beer in hell" are real life incidents that happened with him, or to put in a better way, he did them

Rash, in your face, full of abuses and absolutely hillarious but still filled of crap stories, that actually make you laugh and think what kind of a person this guy is. He fully owns the books and incidents in it, and a guy needs balls to do them and them write a book on them

And to see why I read this book, you should read wikipedia page of Max Tucker and his success story. These books sold over a million copies.

If you want to read something crappy but still entertaining in your spare time, read this book

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
by Stieg Larrson

Just started reading this book a few days back. Not just another mystery/crime book as per resources. The last book has been a bestseller and been transformed into a movie. Although I haven’t seen the movie, nor do I plan to, until I read all the three books in the Millennium Series by Steig Larrson

Stieg Larrson is into intricate detailing when it comes to characters and plots. He doesn’t leave any threads loose. I have never read his earlier creations, probably because I never knew about him till I started reading this book

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Decisions, Character and Knowledge

15 Mar

DECISIONS
You may take decisions in life and a lot many of them. Decisions taken very fast, on the blink of an eye

It is very easy to take decisions, what is difficult is to stick by them and fulfill the rational behind taking those decisions.

If you do not fulfill the rational, does that mean that you were wrong in taking it. NO, but yes you were incompetent to take those decisions at that time, but not totally wrong

Making those decisions worthy of themselves is probably difficult. Most of us do not make the decisions worthy of the time and reason they were taken.

A lot many more times, the decisions are taken in awe of something bigger than yourself and which defines your next future overall strategy about life

A lot many many more times decisions are taken on half or less than half knowledge.Knowledge hampers the quick decision making process and creates chaos


CHARACTER

Hidden most of the time from ourselves

We in fact never ever can know what our own character is. In fact, the least we ever think about ourselves in our entire lives are is our character.

The easiest thing is to pass quick judgement about other person’s character

Building a character does not take a lifetime, its built by few early life events and incidents, one’s level of exposure and one’s countering decisions

A characterless person still has a character but he/she realizes that it cannot be changed

Most truthful fact in the world is that one cannot change one’s own character ever in a lifetime. Its a hardcoded sequence in one’s brain


KNOWLEDGE

The truthfulness of a person is partially dependent on his knowledge but more so on how much he spreads and shares it

What we know is seldom used as a means to decide what we should know.

This anomaly or a contradiction is what fuels capitalism and the abuse of being wealthy or becoming wealthy

I would like to quote from Nassim Nicolas Taleb’s "The Bed of Procrustes" : Wealthy is meaningless and has no robust absolute measure, use instead the subtractive measure "unwealth", that is, the difference at any point in time, between what you have and what you would like to have

Sums up greatly what a lot of people think that being wealthy is all that makes you big in life.

Also, apparent presence of knowledge is not necessary the qualities of a wise person. He may be stinking of a half baked vision of growth.

E-Book Reader Solution for iPhone/iPad – Stanza + Calibre

8 Mar

This post is relevant to iPhone and iPad users who would like to read books on their devices

Yesterday I installed Stanza from Lexcycle (http://www.lexcycle.com/) a very lightwight and robust e-book reader for the iPhone. It supports formats like pdf/html/epub, epub being the most popular

lexcyclesiteheader.png

When combined with Calibre (http://calibre-ebook.com/) this becomes your hub for e-book exchange with your PC. You can always download the epub format books from various sources and get them loaded to your iPhone/iPad in like 5 minutes OR you can buy them from countless sources on the net

The interface and bookmarking feature is very clean and Stanza loads books with sizes more than 10MB without any issues.

App has a night feature too, bookmarks multiple books at a time,has font increase/decrease feature plus rotation lock. Pretty much you would want in an e-book reader for your iPhone

In contrast, I also tried some other apps like Bookshelf (which crashed when loaded books with size more than 1.5 MB) and Kobo (not free at all)

For book overs, try this out