Product Development in India [Video]

In February 2012, I gave a talk at the Agile India 2012 conference. The topic was “Product Development in India”. I use my experiences from the the 1980s till today to give people a guided tour of what it was (and is) like to develop products in India. This talk is a wee bit more formal than my usual talks, but hopefully you will enjoy it.

A question of ethics

RubberstampsIf you involve me in a process that I find out to be of questionable quality, repeatedly object, recuse myself immediately after, and ask you not to use my name to rubber stamp your questionable results, but you still do, what does that say about you?

(To be continued)

p.s. Am currently keeping comments on hold, and will release them at a later date, when I post up the complete story.


eBooks & Educational Institutions

eBooksToo many people look at ebooks as some new, technological miracle that requires some completely new way of thinking. That’s rather weird to someone like me, who has been using eBooks since the late 1990s. It is also completely wrong – ebooks are essentially just books, as we have known them from times before Gutenberg. What changes is only the medium they are “printed” on.

So the most critical requirement for an ebook implementation is the same as it is for any other book – subject, author, writing.

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On inviting me to give a talk at your event

Every year, I face the same problem. Come February, and I get flooded with invitations to speak at some event or the other. And I have to turn them down, because they are all in my “unavailable” period of mid to end-February (for various personal reasons, including my birthday, my wedding anniversary, etc.).

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The Real Problem With SOPA & PIPA…

Stop SOPA…is not that you wouldn’t be able to access material on the web anymore if these acts pass.

It is that there wouldn’t be any material to access.

Because if the publishing of almost any form of creative work can be arbitrarily (and even retrospectively) criminalised using SOPA & PIPA, people will eventually stop publishing (or even creating) material.

And that is when culture will truly die.


Not everything goes as planned…

TL;DR Version: PRODUCTISE.IN isn’t happening in January 2012, will now happen in our regular event slot in December 2012.

The long version:

For the past 10 years or so, I have had things mostly work as planned for my projects. In 2001, I had to scrap the original Linux Bangalore event plans when things didn’t fall in place, forcing us to reschedule to December 2001, which worked out very well.

Unfortunately, those were different times – with no established expectations or precedents.

We had originally planned to hold PRODUCTISE.IN in December 2011 (our regular slot for the now discontinued FOSS.IN), but the short notice made it difficult for speakers from abroad to make it.

So we rescheduled to January 2012, moved the venue booking, and started planning.

Then the venue owners informed us that they may not be able to give us the venue, as some internal event was happening around that time. They said they would let us know for sure by mid-December, but didn’t. In panic, we started scrambling around looking for an alternate venue, but everything was booked, or unsuitable.

The team had a discussion about this, and we realised that it was now too late. As it is, the event preparation time was ambitious (October to December, about 70 days originally). Shifting the date once more by a month was not possible (most of the team members are not available post January until mid-2012), and even I have prior commitments in February (our 25th wedding anniversary and my 50th birthday being among them).

We do have a firm venue booking for December 2012 for what was supposed to be the primary PRODUCTISE.IN event, but it is clear to us that the Event Curtain Raiser in January 2012 is not possible now.

So it is with long faces that we must announce that the PRODUCTISE.IN event planned for January 2012 stands cancelled. The event will now take place in our usual event slot in December 2012.

Details about the December event will be made public by March (and ONLY after we have everything carved in stone), giving everyone plenty of time to prepare for the event.

We apologise to everyone who looked forward to the event, and do hope to see you all at PRODUCTISE.IN/2012 in December 2012.


20 Tips For Your First Job

Six months ago, I tweeted a list of 20 tips for people starting their first job that day (June 1st). The list was partly or fully re-posted all across the web, but people keep asking me for a link to the tips. So I guess I should post them here on my own blog as well. :)

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