Friday, December 08, 2006

Nightouts - Good or Bad ?

Useful Night-outs occur in one of these scenarios:
1. Project Delivery Phase.

2. When the person would like to work "extra" to complete a calculated portion of the work.
3. When the person is unable to complete a standard work within the allotted time of 9 hours.
4. Debugging / Error correction.
5. Correction of a Dangerous Error on a live server.
6. Negotiation Discussions with other geographies on their time.
And maybe just a couple more. I have not mentioned concall here since you are free to leave after the call 95% of the time, except when it leads to a situation of one of the above. And it is always kept in a comfort zone for India and US.

More than a night-out, it must be thought in respect of commitment to the cause, and any reason above will not hurt you or the company, since it occurs on very few occasions and many last a few days and it is never permanent. Being committed means delivery on the promised schedules. This creates a sense of achievement and satisfaction to all stakeholders namely,
1. You
2. Your colleagues on the project / team
3. Project Manager
4. Delivery Head
5. Relationship Manager
6. Practice Head
7. CEO
8. Customer / Client
9. Potential Clients.

Any company to progress must achieve and deliver against forecast results. In order for all of us to grow and excel, we sometimes do night-outs too.

You must also take into account those days where you are not pressed or pressurized for work completion during other phases of the SDLC. And after delivery and signoff, there is always a period from 1 week to 15 days where there is very less or no work at all until you get allotted to a different project.

But most other cases where night outs are made but not necessary:
1. You sit since everybody sits.
2. You are not able to complete the work allotted to you within time allotted to you since you while away your office hours in a irresponsible manner.
3. Come late and go late.
4. Overload - You accept too many responsibilities.
5. Overshoot - You miscalculate the time required to complete the job.
6. Just browsing to spend time.
Here, you not only hurt yourselves but also the company and both stand to lose on health, time and money. Night-outs should not be made a practice since in the long term; it will hurt all the stakeholders.

1. Work Smart!
2. If you have over estimated, admit it and try to correct ASAP.
3. Do not postpone you work. Even if you correct in time, test it and correct all errors.
4. Though an UAT will be made from customer side, try to do one from our side. It is better to be safe than sorry.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Quick Office Tips

1. Wrap text within the cell --> Press Alt+ Enter
2. Move to the next sheet in the workbook --> CTRL+PAGE DOWN
3. Move to the previous sheet in the workbook --> CTRL+PAGE UP
4. Shortcut, make charts --> F11
5. To select the entire column --> CTRL+SPACEBAR
6. To select the entire row --> SHIFT+SPACEBAR
Word / PowerPoint
Align – Justify --> Ctrl + J

Friday, October 13, 2006

My Bike is Stolen

My new bike purchased on 7th June 2006, hardly 4 months old / Apache (Red) has beeen stolen from my house compound. It has run only 2500 kms and just finished the second service.

Sequence of events: I left my motorbike within the compound wall of our apartments near the doctors house (Ground Floor) at 7:15pm on 10/10/2006. After that I had gone to my house on the first floor. I had locked the bike. I noticed the theft only in the morning on 11/10/2006 at 7:15am. A boy who comes to clean my bike informed me that there was no bike. I came down and searched but could not find the bike. I noticed some tire marks as if the bike had been dragged. When I had enquired with the persons staying on the ground floor (the doctors), they informed me that they had seen the bike at 10:30pm on 10/10/2006 when they had come home. So, I deducted that the bike has been stolen between 10:30 pm on 10/10/2006 and 7:15am on 11/10/2006. Verbally I had informed the police that I heard a siren, their blue brigade patrol at around 12:15am on 11/10/2006. There is higher probability for the theft to occur between 12:15am on 11/10/2006 to 6:00am on 11/10/2006, as there will be people movement in my area after 6:00am.

Yes, I do miss my stolen bike but the process after is more hurting. I found that my bike was under insured with ICICI Lombard and the IDV is mentioned as Rs. 49,875. I paid Rs. 61,500 for my bike, which includes special number for Rs.2500, and electric start. The insurance paper mentions it as kick start. And even if there's an insurance pay back, it is Rs.12000 less.

I have filed the FIR and filed for insurance claim. But this process will extend from a period of 2-3 months. What am I supposed to do for another 3 months ? I do not have any extra bike or scooter and neither can I buy a new one assuming that my bike will not be found.

I am following it through some known police officers, but they have not given me hope. They informed me that after stealing within that day, the bike is dis assembled and sold as parts. (I just hope that nothing like that has happened and hope that I will get my bike whole as on the day it was stolen.) The police officers at the police station have a bored look. They do not care at all.
I have borrowed my dad's bike temporarily, but it has given me such a bad back, that I do not want to use this device. It is going to be be long frustrating weeks with "Nataraja" service and Auto haggling.

All I wish is there some RFID device that I could hide into my bike which has a battery life of 1 year and a traceability area of 3-5 sq kms. If it is cost effective, then all these thefts will be passe. The police could trace all vehicles sitting in one location (A manufacturer site) With improvements, this tag can provide a better version and linking this with vehilcles will provide a maximum deterrent to theft, not only in India but also all over the world.

Any body else thinking along my lines ?

Questions for life …

- What is life ?
- Why are we here now ?
- What is the purpose of life ?
- Why do we die before/after enlightenment?
- What stage is enlightenment ?
- If the purpose of the human birth is until enlightenment, what am I doing here working my life off for money ?
- If enlightenment is my path, why was I not blessed with money so that I could concentrate on enlightenment ?
- What happens after death ?
- What determines my next birth ?
- How does birth as a human guarantee a transfer to another dimension ?
- Why is the law of Karma possible ?
- If Karma is there, pariharams are able to reduce bad effects, why is there Karma?
- Why is that some persons die even if pariharams are made ?
- Why cannot I sacrifice for someone else ?
- If love can make anything happen, why is it not happening ?
- What causes death ?
- How does one body affect another though marriage ?
- How does the life change after marriage ?
- Why is not possible to write off all debts in just one birth ?
- How does life (soul) come into the new born baby ?
- If the soul is able to choose the parents, is there a similar world as earth in another dimension ?
- How are multiple dimensions (ghost / after death / deva loka / ashura loka / shiva loka etc) existing ?
- If dreaming is considered as life in another dimension, does the soul just pass from one dimension to another and how does it exist simultaneously in several dimensions ?
- What is reality ?
- If “siddhi’s” should not be used, then why are they there ?
- Where does the soul reside in the human body ?
- If the soul is part “God”, why I am searching for him outside ?
- How do I achieve/realize "God" ?

I need ANSWERS and this is not the end of my list neither am I a novice to these questions and search for answers.

Who knows ?

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Air Deccan's 3 for 3 - Good Deal or Raw Deal ?

Is this deal a good deal? What is the hidden agenda? What are the hidden processes ? Please find below a full blown discovery! My mail to Airdeccan and I received only 2 bot mails so far " We received your mail, we will get back to you" kind. I have not seen such callous attitude to the customer queries. Any body else feel like having received the same raw deal ?


Dear Customer Care,

I was surprised to find that the refund of Rs.2784/- towards the trip from Chennai to Delhi has been credited back to my account at ICICI bank contained the PNR NUMBER!

(26/08/2006 AIRDECCAN RFND-PRN Cr 2,784.00)

Whereas you had refuted my query with you on several attempts by telephone and also in person, (between 24th August 2006 to 25th August 2006) by informed me that the PNR number had not been generated and so my ticket from Chennai to Delhi would be cancelled.

I had booked the ticket for 3 persons namely:

for 10th November 2006, from Chennai to Delhi by AirDeccan Flight DN639 through my ICICI bank account on 23rd August 2006 and my account had been debited for the same.

(23/08/2006 Dr 2,784.00)

This was purchased under your special scheme for Rs.3 for 3 lakh tickets. When I did not get a confirmation mail even after 3 hours, I had called up the customer care (should I say, “customer don’t care!”). After 45 minutes and 20 attempts, I was able to get hold of a “live person”. He informed me that the PNR number was not generated and the money would be refunded. This was confirmed by one more staff at your “ Whites Road ” office, where I had gone personally. (BTW, did you know that a girl appointed by you at the reception knows only this sentence “Call up customer care, I cannot help you”. My question to you – What is she there for and why does she has such a bad attitude?) The other “boy” at the reception was able to connect me with his manager inside the room. Only the manager present in the office was more kind (?) and informed me that the PNR number was not generated and so my ticket would be cancelled. He had confirmed this information to me, when your staff at the reception mentioned to me that the server was down. He maintained the same stance from my entry at about 11:30 am to my exit at about 12:15 pm. From where this manager was able to pull this information with the servers down, I don’t know! Must be magic!!! (The staff at the reception gave this reply to persons who wanted to book tickets. 2 persons were waiting for over 2 hours for the booking.)

I had also booked the return ticket (from Delhi to Chennai) on the same day after I had booked this ticket and have been awarded the same. So, please do not raise the issue that I could have booked later on.

This cancellation reflects to unfair trade practices and cheating of customers through one of the below mentioned techniques:

Unfair Trade Practice 1: (Staff)
I believe your staffs have been canceling tickets so that they can award themselves with the tickets. This has come to light because the cancellation of the ticket contains a PNR number which your staff informed me that a number had not been generated.

Unfair Trade Practice 2: (Company)
The system/staff (on instructions from the company) have automatically cancelled the ticket to Delhi for the same family since AirDeccan would want the family to purchase tickets one way. If so, you should have specifically have provided this information on your web site / advertisement failing which it becomes a plain case of cheating.

Please provide me a fair deal.

Up in Smoke!

I was reading my own post. But I remembered the exact reason why I left it. But I did not mention it in full truth since I did not want my sister to know how I had felt on that day!

Now, my sister is no more. But the reason why I left smoking was... She mentioned once in the hospital..."I will not take a smoker's blood", when I wanted to give my blood to her. She needed a transfusion and the hospital wanted a donor, and I volunteered immediately but she refused. I felt so ashamed of myself that I could not give blood to my sister, though many of my friends and colleagues did. I felt so helpless and so lonely. That day was the day I felt I was worthless. If I could not give up smoking, I was a total waste. And I did give up smoking ...with the thought of my sister..and I steeled it using other metaphysical resolves...thanks to my sister. Chomi..where ever you are I will always love you. I wish you to come back to me in your next birth.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Thank you Everyone

Thank you everyone for the heartfelt condolences and kind wishes. I am very glad that Sowmya had such wonderful friends in her blog world who respected her a lot. I am also grateful to the others who knew very less about her but still sent their condolences as a mark of respect for her memories. Thank you all.
I am now discussing with my family on whether to post the chain of events which lead to her untimely demise. She would have lived for a longer period if not for the doctors carelessness in administering the treatment.
There are 2 trains of thoughts running here.
1. Some feel that the causes be mentioned since somebody else could benefit out of it. They can also question the all knowing doctors on their treatment methods and not accept blindly. (We have questioned and proposed the latest lines of treatment through the best doctors from around the world and even then, there has been a lapse in methodology of treatment in the Indian counterpart)
2. Others feel that now she is no more, let not her "fight" be known. Except for the family and a few good friends, no one else knows, and let it be the same. Let the world not know the pain and suffering she underwent and just remember her as they knew her as happy memories.
Still discussing...

Friday, March 10, 2006

My sister “Sowmya”

To sum up, The Brave Fighter is how I wish to remember her as.. She loved life and wanted to live as happily as ever with her family. She did not like anybody around her to be sad and neither was she sad. In fact, any cinemas / dramas with sad scenes would be forwarded or the channel changed. If my mom was sad, she would immediately sit near her and cheer her up.

Most people who know my sister know her as a happy person, who was living her life normally and most of them will, but very few ppl are aware that she fought an illness with such strong determination that we (the family and close friends) all were wishful in thinking that she was winning the war though a series of victories in her battles. We consulted the best doctors in the world in the best hospitals, and she had been given the latest line of treatment. Some of her friends were very helpful in getting the best doctors and my sister and her husband met one of the best doctors in the US. Since our house was a bit small, during treatment my little sister's parents had provided their house and they treated Sowmya with love, encouragement and happiness. My BIL had also taken a break from office and worked from home so that he could be with her. We also followed up on homeopathy and other non-allopathic medicines. On the spiritual side, we prayed for her in all the temples mentioned (Pariharams) and I had specifically wanted Rudra abhishekams to be performed in her name every month at Kapaleeswarar temple and I had also paid in advance for Archanai in her name at Vaideashwaran Koil. My dad who is 63 yrs old, got up at 3'o clock everyday to chant Soundarya Lahiri for her in the brahma murhurtham. He also went to all possible places and doctors searching for the ultimate cure. Before every visit to the hospital, he would go there first and book rooms so that his daughter could have privacy and be with the family. My mom was with her most of the time and gave her positive reinforcements. She was encouraged when she was sad. She was coaxed and cajoled to eat her food and comforted when she felt sad. There were many times that she cried her heaqrth out saying "Why should everything go wrong with me ?" All those times my mom patted her and said things will get better and she should not lose courage. She did not till the end and she even showed us a thumbs up sign.

Now, she is no more. She passed away after a struggle at Apollo hospital in Chennai on the night of Maha Sivarathiri. I just stood near her along with my family just holding her hand and speaking soothing words to her, telling her that she would come out of it soon and we can be happy after this battle. She fought till her last breath and she wanted to live. In her last days she suffered so much that none of us could sit near her for more than a few minutes without crying. I cannot understand how God can be so indifferent!! A few years back, I was much into meditation and I did not want to live in this world at all, he could have just taken my life earlier on, instead of hers.

I find that I cannot still reconcile myself to the fact that my sister is no more. I still cannot accept it. She certainly looked like she was winning the war, but for the doctors’ wrong treatment methods. Specific instructions provided by world renowned doctors were not followed by the Indian counterpart in full. He had given her a line of treatment as he deemed fit (different from the other doctors’ recommendations) and he has in effect killed my sister. I certainly did not like the words used by him. Quote: “Don’t tell me how to run my unit, I will run it as I please!” – He used them when we had suggested for a different line of treatment and a second opinion from a different doctor. He was completely commercialized!!! It is a unit he speaks of ….and not a human life!!! Words fail me beyond this point, I shall post more when I am more composed.

Who was she in the blogging world ? - Sowmya at