Tuesday, December 30, 2008

And the countdown begins...

And the countdown for the year 2008 to end begins from now. If someone asks me to do a recap of 2008 as to how it has been, I would simple describe it in just one word, “Terrible”. And, many people would fairly believe with me that this year has been the worst of all. With so many things happened this year from bomb blasts that have taken place in most of cities in India to the latest terror strikes that happened in Mumbai on 26/11. Also, not to forget, the economic slowdown, which has brought the economy to where it all started. But, one should not lose hope because it’s a part of the game in life. After all, we do not have good times every time as we do have bad times as they were this year. 2008 has done one good thing, and i.e. it has brought all the people of India to stay united against the terror. All these lighting of candles at the India Gate and Gateway of India may seem rubbish but it has made us all realize the power of a “citizen”. Up till now, we citizens were just not bothered or if we were then we were just waiting for few people to act against the terror. And, that is what 2008 has done a good thing. It has made us stand united, holding hands and ask the politicians as to when will they just stop thinking about themselves and start thinking really about the country. It is nothing wrong though to think about yourselves but if people have voted you with a confidence then it becomes an utmost duty of a politician to prove them all that what you are worth it. Otherwise, if people lose faith upon the politicians, then it doesn’t take long to have them throw out of the power. It just shows the power that a citizen has…

So, as the sun of the New Year is beginning to rise, and as 2008 is beginning to hands the baton to the New Year, “2009”, let’s hope that New Year bring peace and prosperity in our lives and other people lives as we.. Let us all make a pledge that whatever may happen but we must stand united, and we will not bend down upon any faction of the society. In addition, let us all make a resolution that we must help out each other in times of any calamity, and let us all spread the word “happiness” in not only ours but other people’s lives as well.


WISH you a HAPPY NEW YEAR!
And the buzzwords are...

Like everyday, I got up early today at 5:45 AM. I opened the main gate of my house, and bent down to pick up the newspaper which the vendor had just thrown. As soon as, I turned to go back inside, I saw an old man stretching himself, getting ready to go for his daily chores. I wandered where he was up to in this early morning. Though, I had seen him quite often coming at the same time, passing by my house. But, to see anyone in this early morning and that too in a chilly winter was a suicidal attempt. But, then I realized that if someone has to earn his living then the person doesn’t need to see the weather. It has been so many times that I see many rickshaw pullers driving their customers while it was raining heavily. They were just not worried about themselves getting wet; instead their only worry at that time was to drop their customer to their respective location as quickly as possible, and that too maybe for a penny. That’s “Commitment” and “Dedication”. They are committed towards their customers, and dedicated towards their work. These words may sounds meaningless these days, and few people might even question me upon this. But, the real fact is that these words play an important part in our lives. Its not that we should only be committed and dedicated towards our work. Whatever we do, whether it is into learning a new thing such a musical instrument, spending time with our family members or spouse, or doing something for the national interest. All these things and much more require some sort of “commitment” and “dedication”.

Some people might even ask me that how it that how we stay is committed towards a task in hand or how can we stay committed while spending time with our family members. And, the answer is fairly simple, you just need to do few simple things which you know but you tend to forget.

So, stay committed and dedicated while new year rises....

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Let us light a candle!

Four days, extreme face of terror. It was really terrible, what happened in Mumbai for last four days, it was such a terrible thing that when we think also, it feels scary for us. Its time for us all to support, pay tribute to all those commandos who fought fiercely and bravely with the terrorists, and finally took the three building under their control. I do not live in Mumbai though but I do want to extend my hearteous support to the mumbaikars; I fill tears in eyes for those who laid their lives. It is needless to say that their presence cannot be filled in theor families, but lests try to understand that life moves on, and lets just move on with te our daily routine. Throughout these 60 hours, there hasnt been a single minute when I havent made myself aware of the situations (thanks to all the news channels for their quick coverage..for whatever reason they did whether it was for TRP or whatever but I dont want to take the onues from them also). So, let us salute to all the matyrs who laid their lives while fighting with the terrorists so that we can sleep peacefully. But, its high time that the Government of India act to the situation as it is getting worse than ever. Everytime, I get out of office, I just have a fear in mind that whether I wil l come back alive or not. There is a fear in my mind that what if today is another bomb blast or a terror attack like this. Now that the attack is finally over and Taj is under our control, its time for analysts to analyse the situation. But, lets not just say as to why this thing happened? Now is the time to understand as what needs to be done to avoid such things in future. The brave commandos have shown while fighting with the terrorists that we just cant let anyone capture our nation. They have proved to us that their are people to make us realize that we can live in our homes peacefully. People like Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan and Hemant Karkare wil lalways be remembered in our hearts for their brave act, for they have shown that terrorists just go on like this. But, there has to be an end to all these terror activities. Someone must find a solution, and someone has to take that repsonsibiliy that, "Yes, we can." I reppeat those words of the USA preseident, Barack Obama that "Yes, we can....and we will fight this terrorism to its end." Lets not waste the lives of all those matyrs who have fought bravely with the terrorists to make our lives secure. My heart fills with tears, and I can very well understand how their family will be feeling at this moment as their place cannot be filled with anyone and it wont be either. It will be just matter of time that everyone will forget them as the human memory fades out wuite often but they will alwas remain in our hearts. So, while we remember them from our heart, lets light a candle and make a pledge that we will fight this terrorism to its end.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Dasvidania

Last Sunday, I watched a Hindi movie called "Dasvidania" on my DVD. Its hero, Vinay Pathak, who also happened to be the Co-producer of the movie have done a wonderful job in the movie. It was well-written script, and left a message at the end. The movie started with Vinay making a "To-do list" of tasks he needs to do during the day, which we all do in our daily lives. So, this is so very similar to the reality, to which we all can co-relate. He makes a to-do list of all the tasks that he needs furing the day but forgets the tasks that he wanted to do in life, and one day comes when he is diagnosed with stomach cancer, and the doctor advises him that he wont stay beyond 3 months. He revisits his life, and tries to understands what had gone wrong in his entire course of life that had caused him this misery. He gets depressed, and turns to drinking in trying to realize the situation. It happens so many times that we create the To-do list of all the daily activities but in between all this, we tend forget the basic motto of life, and i.e. trying to be happy and enjoy the nature. We get engrossed so much in work that we even forget our own desires. There are so many things we desire to do like owning a farm house, going to beach or Seychelles, and so on. But, we get caught up so much in work that we cant find time to enjoy our life, and then a time comes when we have to go from this earth. It is then we realize but then it is too late. Like it happened with the hero of the film when the doctor gave him a notification of 3 months; it may not happen with everyone. Death comes all of a sudden, and we may not be able to do anything.

What will you do then?

Think about it?

Its time we realize that we all are guests on this earth, and we have to leave this earth one day, so until we are here, why not live every moment in joy and happiness, and share the same with our loved ones. Why not live each moment as if it was a last day on earth? Why not fulfill if not all, some of the desires that we want to?

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Mentoring Technical Writers!

In the recently concluded mentoring programme organized by STC India chapter, I was asked to rate the programme. Sometimes, we are put in such difficult situations where we have to do what we find the most difficult to do it. The programs like this really should happen once in a while because it not only benefits those who are in need but also those who are willing to spend their time for such unique cause. Apart from work, these activities also form an important part of an individual working in a corporate environment. In the recently published article "Maintaining Work-Life Balance) in the Indus newsletter (http://stc-india.org/indus/), I have clearly outlined the benefits of maintaining the Work-life balance and how essential it is for each one of us to spend as much time with our family as we do with our work. Continuing on the same topic, I believe that we can maintain a balance between work and personal life by being associated with the work itself, and that can be done by participating in such activities. It is all about to rejuvenate your energy levels. By mentoring another technical writer, we got to know our strengths and weaknesses as well. I feel proud that I have been a part of such a program, and would definitely like to participate in more such programs.

If anyone of you is willing to learn technical writing, do contact me at my email: anuj.anujkapoor@gmail.com.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Good Gesture from Captain Cool!

Such a good gesture that you can only expect from the "Captain Cool": Mahindra Singh Dhoni to give over the reigns for the last 3-4 overs to "Dada" eyeing that this will be his last test. This is definitely called a true sportsman spirit, and paying tribute to the man under whom he had played once. Mahi is really a person to cherish with not only good cricketing skills but also having a good character. That's the reason why he is so successful because he does have a heart. Its not just about giving the reigns to Sourav Ganguly for one last time but its about the thought which made him do so such a thing. This gesture may not benefit him much but surely put him in the hearts of millions of fans of cricket, and it will open a new chapter in the history of Indian Cricket.

Salute to Mahi for this overwhelming gesture! And, salute to Dada for his overall contribution to Indian Cricket, which has been fabulous. Dada has been a gem of Indian Cricket, and I had always been a fan of his batting no matter what form he was in. Though, it felt sad when he announced his retirement but all said and done, everyone has its own time in Cricket, and with so many youngsters pouring in, its time now that he should step down and give a chance to them to come in. Dada should now play a more important role, that of a mentor in order to groom the "new Dada" of Indian Cricket - maybe from WB itself.

Monday, November 03, 2008

I just got my article published on "Maintaining Work-Life Balance" in the following link:

http://stc-india.org/indus/

(Please note that it is under Cool Tips section.)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Coffee Boy

I am used to going for coffee breaks during my office hours, and I go to the refreshment room more than often. Sometimes, I go all alone, and sometimes with my peers / colleagues. This time, I went to the refreshment room alone, and I noticed the coffee boy sitting over there. Though, he sits there everyday, as that is his duty of continuously sitting on same chair. However, that day I noticed him particularly because the room seemed to be empty compared to before. He looked at me, smiled, and said, “Hello, sir.”

I looked at him. He had a short height, and was wearing his uniform, which the Coffee Vendor might have given him as the dress had a label of Coffee Vendor. He also had a glow on his face which was different from other coffee boys.

I smiled at him, and replied with a warm hello. I asked his name, and he said his name was Ram Saran. Then, I asked, where was he from? To this, he replied, “I am from Bihar.”

Then, it all started the saga of conversation. We started our conversation with the victory of India over Australia. He said, “Cricket has become rather a boring these days due to its excessive coverage with due respects from IPL and ICL” At first, I was a little amazed with his state of awareness. But, after a moment, I also joined the discussion by replying to him, “Yes, the craze is now all gone with heat of IPL and ICLs. At this, he said, “BCCI should spend money in venturing in other sports as well such as Hockey, Athletics, and so on.”

He said, “Hockey is our national game, and its state is no less than a mere beggar on streets, and the players have to pay themselves to be in the hockey team.”

I was again amazed to see how aware he is on the current affairs. He went on to talk about how media uses the news item to earn money, and how did the media used Saurav’s retirement news and flashed it on the news channels for 2 respective days, asking the viewers to SMS their views on whether Saurav should retire at this state. He also said, “It’s the same media that were against Saurav Ganguly when he wasn’t amongst runs, and was demanding to announce his retirement.” I kept on listening to him patiently, and realized that how much aware is the common man today, and it’s not a question of interest because it has become a necessity for a common man to be aware about what’s happening around the world.

At last, he said something, which moved me really. He said, “Poor is becoming poorer, and rich is becoming richer.” And, this is an underlying fact, which the Government hasn’t realized or is blind-folded to this realization. With the current market getting downsized, it may not affect the Tata’s, Birla’s, and Ambani’s to a large extent but it will certainly affect the common man because they are not the richest people on earth. Instead, what they need is twice a meal in a day. That’s, what they are looking for. Of course, they want to live life king-size, but their first priority to feed their family. I wonder sometimes that the difference between the rich and poor will finish, and poverty will be really eradicated as our dear politicians promise every time there is an election.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Reality Shows: What's the big deal!

First, it was the Saas-bahu saga with Ekta Kapoor been considered as the Soap Queen as her two shows rocked the whole nation, and now the "reality show" boom is rocking the whole nation in the television industry. Every other day a channel is born, and what you see first is a reality show whether it is for dance, music, or any other activity. You name it, and you have a reality show for that particular thing. So, now, people who have talent don't have to go knocking the doors of the concerned persons, and neither they have to deliberately leave their homes to the city of dreams called "Mumbai" for getting a break. They can do it easily by participating in such reality shows, though they still have to work very hard, of course. Without hard work, nothing is possible on this earth. You cant get everything served on your plate. But, media has really shown the doors to the people who deserve their every right to be in the limelight. But, easier said than done, are these reality shows really giving an opportunity to the people who deserve or this is just a gimmick and the real story of reality shows is entirely different. I wonder, some day Madhur Bandharkar will make a film on "Reality Shows" even as to what happens in the backdrop of reality shows and whats the real story all about, like he did in so many other movies such as Corporate, Page-3, and his latest to be released, "Fashion".

Whatever may be the case, if people are benefiting with these "Reality Shows", then I surely put my vote on it, even if an SMS worth 3 Rs and it earns a billion dollar for the organizers. So what, if the organizers and sponsors are earning a hell amount of money. They have every right to earn money as the saying goes, "Its All about Money, Honey".

But everything has a limit, and too many reality shows may spoil the entertainment saga. People tend to get bore easily, and they may not be interested in it any more. So, the channels and media will have to think of something else to replace the boom of reality show. But, till then, keep on enjoying the reality show bandwagon and watch the fights happening in the shows to have fun.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Delhi ROCKS!

Last weekend, we witnessed yet another blasts hitting another metropolitan city, our very own "DELHI". All these blasts took place in the most happening places of Delhi viz-a-viz, Connaught Place, Greater Kailash-I, and Karol Bagh. Whovever did this horrifying act, had done his home-work well as the day being a "weekend" is filled with a lot of people coming over there for shopping and having fun. But, how do they know that the fun would be all lost in the sky. Those of whom, who stayed back home were lucky enough and those who went there were the unlucky ones. I have always heard from saints and my mom saying that life is in hands of the Almighty, "GOD" but I wander sometimes that is really life in God's hands or these people who perform such barbaric acts. I was listening in one of the news channels that one of the couples had come to Delhi for the first time, and had vowed to never come in their life again because what they suffered was really horrifying. Theor trip was made their last one due to this barbaric act. But, life moves on. Whatever, blasts may occur in Delhi, life still moves on at its own pace. The people who have performed such an act cant really disturb the mood of Delhi. Delhi still rocks and will continue to rock no matter how many bomb blasts may happen. The politicians have condemend it, media have criticized it, and a lot of people have suffered. But, with time, all will foget, and then people will come out again on streets to have fun and go for shopping. No terrorist can really put fear in our hearts and minds as long as we have faith in our GOD. Delhi is city where a millions of people from different culture and diversity have come to earn their livelihood, and have made it their home.

No one can burn the spirit of Delhities, and neither can such barbaric acts bring down our enery levels. We delhities will still say, "चलता है यार...ऐसे छोटे मोटे अच्सिदेंट्स तो होते ही रहते हैं तो इससे कोई जीना तो नहीं छोड़ देता॥"

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Shame on you!

Its such a shame that though we live in India, and say that India is a secular and a democratic country, but still we are divided based upon different castes. And, now there is different kind of divide bing created, and i.e. regional divide. For instance, a person born in Delhi goes to Maharashtra or Mumbai (which is considered as a land of dreams for millions of people) to earn his/her living. But, what he/she gets in turn is a regional divide, and is asked or rather forced to adopt the language of that particular region. India has a one of the largest democratic country in the whole world, and what name we are giving in front of the world. How safe is the common man when the well-known personalities like Jaya Bachchan and Shahrukh Khan are being attacked for being claiming themselves to be a part of the regions from where they have come. Can anyone forget a region from where they have come or have been born? For that matter, are we trying to prove everyone that India is not a democratic country but rather it is a non-secular country. There is a need for a consensus, and the media needs to react to the situation urgently before it gets too late. I just read an article in Yahoo.com, which mentions that "In southern states, the anti-Hindi campaign has been on for the last sixty years. There is a ban on Hindi films and Hindi news in Tamil Nadu (Source: http://in.news.yahoo.com/20/20080909/1430/ten-sena-targets-king-khan.html)

I was shocked to see this news, and it is a known fact that most of the tamil movies are bing dubbed in hindi and vice-versa and the hindi ones are more popular. Not only this, even the tamil actors and actresses such as Kamal Hassan, Rajnikanth, Jaya Prada, and so on have been more successful in the Bollywood than they were in Tamil cinema. Then, why such a regional divide? More shocking in the article was that in Assam, people are killed who speak in hindi. Its high time we do something for this situation. This is a serious issue, and the media needs to take thew responsibility on their shoulders instead of giving us news if how a man reached the moon or how a cheetah killed a mouse or even when did Amitabh Bachchan went to temple.

We live in India no matter which region we belong to, and if we are a democratic country then make us feel that we area secular and democratic country.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Such is his caliber...

He is a genius. Such is his caliber that whichever movie or even for that matter, an advertisement he does, becomes a "hit". Some people don't have do silly things and they still create history. While, some people continue to struggle throughout their life, and they keep on searching for that little break. He has such power within himself that he can turn the fans to follow him. He is the "Aamir Khan". Whether it is Aakash from 'Dil Chahta Hai' or Bhuvan from 'Lagaan' or a Art teacher, Ram Shankar Nikumbh from his latest TZP. All of them have created history, and he has been able to voo the audience.

Yesterday, I was watching his advertisement for "Tata Sky" as he is their brand ambassador. I must say that he is simply the genius. Someone was telling me the other day that he charges around 14 crores for an advertisement. I said, "WOW". But, then I realized that with the power he has, this money that he charges is nothing. I havent seen him in doing any kind of shows like "Paachvi Paas se Tez Hai" or "Dus ka Dum" but still people like him; and they admire him.

I must say that if anyone is a Badshah of Indian Cinema, It has to be "Aamir Khan".

Monday, September 01, 2008

Divide & Rule

So, here I am again with a yet another blog entry. Last month, there had been a quite a few so this month I will make a point to post as regular as possible.

Starting this month, we have some bad news and some good. Lets have some good news, and the good one is, that the Amarnath shrine board has agreed upon to compromise. Sometimes, I wonder when they had to compromise then it could have done some two months earlier, and it would have saved so much of bloodshed that have occurred since these months. Though, the Kashmir valley is not happy with this but its just the minor chuckles, and I believe congress have some shrewd politicians, and they will make them agree.

Now, for the bad news, the riots in Orissa seem to be in no control, and just for the wrong reason. And, now there are riots between Hindus and Christians. Sometimes, I wonder why our dear politicians feel so proud in having a religious divide among the people of India. It seems like they are following the "Divide & Rule" policy that the British used to do while they were here in India. The British though have gone but they have taught quite a few lessons to these politicians and this one is among them, Divide and Rule. You divide the people based upon the religions and rule upon them. But, today's man seem to be more aware of things, and have understood this underlying fact. They don't have any problem with any religion as far as they are getting the opportunities. This world has become a land of opportunities, though it had always been but people have realized this fact recently, and are trying to cope with it. So, be it a Hindi, a Muslim, a Christian, or a Sikh, all are mere individuals who come in this world as an individual to perform their duties, and then go back after they task is over, I mean to say after their retirement age comes ahead of them. Everything is planned for us, individuals. God has made a plan for each one of us, and have sent us according to that plan. There is no miss in any schedule, and all the deadlines are met accordingly.

So, how much we are divided and ruled upon, there is one Almighty who is ruling upon us, and who has sent us for a purpose and will call us when that purpose is finished.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Have we lost our identity?

We get up in the morning, go to office, develop code for the software to be used by the millions of users, write content to be read by those million users. And, in this we take regular breaks, I mean meal or coffee breaks, and indulge in the office gossip. But, sometimes I feel that with all this are we losing our identity. India has seen so many eminent personaltities, and stalwarts with the likes of Ramanujan, Prof CV Raman, Chandrashekhar, Prof CS Seshadri, and so on. We have the great nobel laureate, CV Ramam producing the most innovative research hich we call it as "Raman Effect" and we have Ramanujan the stalwart in mathematics. Above all this, we also have the Aryabhatta, producing the well found research in area of mathematics whether it is giving volumes of sphere and pyramid or giving an approximation of pi. But the fact is that these people had existed, and still exists in our mind somewhere. However, these genuises seem to have been lost, as we have got ourselves involved in running after money so much. The growth of Information Technology has seen so many advancements with India entering the "IT superpower market". However, this advancement also has seen change in man's lives. He has become materialistic, and the run-in for money has got him into the race to earn more and more, and it will never end until we ourselves realize the potential of those geniouses. Its true that it is no harm to be materialistic but we need to ask ourselves that are we becoming too materialistic. Where the likes of Ramanujans and CV Ramans? Have we hidden them over the run-ins for money? Its a fact that it has been so many years since we produced a genious in mathematics and science. It seems that the field of science and mathematics has just stopped, and its time we rejuvenate ourselves to revive the field of science and mathematics. ITs high time we realize the potential of research in these fields and continue the works of Ramanujan, Aryabhatta, and CV Raman to bring a new name in Indian history.

Friday, August 29, 2008

“What is in the name!”

Shakespeare said in one of his plays, “What’s in the name?” I wonder sometimes where this rule is applied as it is the “name” that matters the most. If you don’t have a name, then people do not recognize you. Imagine yourself not having a name such as Ram, Albert, or Iqbal then how will people call you.

Will they call you like, “Hey, you!” or “Hey! Come here you.”

Sounds silly isn’t it. How will it look like when everyone will be calling each other like this? Then, there will be no names and people will be calling by the pronouns. Sometimes, I feel that did Shakespeare think while making the statement, “What’s in the name?” And, the hilarious part is that after making that statement, everyone knew that it was made by Shakespeare himself. Imagine how will it feel when you do something good, and don’t leave a name in it. How will it feel to not be recognized after doing something good? After all, people do everything to make a mark of them. But, after giving a due thought on this statement, I realized it has a different meaning. What Shakespeare is trying to say here is that there are so many religions on this earth, and there are so many people of different diversities. All of them are no different. All of them are the same, just the difference lies in the color and caste. “What’s in the name” actually means that it’s not your name that is important but more important is, “You”, yourselves. Everyone wants to be recognized and it’s not bad. It is always good to have aspirations and goals because without that life becomes monotonous. However, more importantly, its important to identify to identify yourselves. Look within yourselves, and ask yourselves what is good and what is bad.

That’s the real meaning of this statement. Shakespeare though had been a thorough thinker, and it is him who could have given such a thoughtful statement.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Why do people say "I am falling in LOVE"?

I have heard people saying in reality and in movies (both Hollywood and our very own Hindi movies) that, "I am falling in love". The term "Falling in Love" is generally derived from western countries, and it usually means the process of moving from a feeling of neutrality towards someone to one of love. The term "Fall" can imply to many things such as putting the lover in a state of vulnerability or that the process is irreversible. It also means that process of love may have been uncontrollable. However, its never bad to fall in love as pointed out by Albert Einstein. It has been theoretically proved by many psychologists that people generally fall in love when they want a change in their life or even start a new life altogether.

I want to quote few lines from a Wikipedia, which says "falling in love is a rapid process of destructuration-reorganization called the nascent state. In the nascent state, the individual becomes capable of merging with another person and creating a new collectivity with a very high degree of solidarity."

I remember a wonderful song sung by Elvis Presley, "I can’t help falling in love with you". Just read through the lyrics of the wonderful song and feel the difference it makes in your lives:

Wise men say
Only fools rush in
But I can’t help falling in love with you
Shall I stay
Would it be a sin?
If I can’t help falling in love with you
Like a river flows
Surely to the sea
Darling so it goes
Some things are meant to be
Take my hand
Take my whole life too
For I can't help
Falling in love with you
Like a river flows
Surely to the sea
Darling so it goes
Some things are meant to be
Take my hand
Take my whole life too
For I can?t help
Falling in love with you
For I can?t help
Falling in love with you

But, why people really fall in love is a mystery, and still is a mystery why some love grows and why some love fails. Love is like a sum of the interests and attractions and certain common traits that two people share. And just as life is a gift that comes and goes in its own time, so too, the coming of love must be taken as an abysmal gift that cannot be questioned.

To some people, this gift of love comes at a very early age so you must take hold of it and celebrate it in all inexpressible beauty. However, if it fails altogether, just don't stick to it. Just move on as you move on with life. Because, just life is a mystery, love is also a mystery that no human being has been able to solve on its own. It’s just the God's will that you cannot even pretend to change. When love fails, you look for answers and think about "What's really wrong in yourselves that made the other person not love you?" You tend to blame the circumstances that caused this situation and say that if they go far away and start a new life, their love will grow. Imagine that you fall in love with another person, and the other person also falls in love with you. Then, suddenly everything starts looking negative to you and other person decides to leave. So, in this situation, do not try to recoup it or to assess blame. Just, let it go. There is a reason and there is a meaning to everything in life. You will know in times to come as its not you who have written your future.

Remember that its not you who chooses Love but it’s the vice-versa. You can only accept it when it comes to your life. Feel the way it fills you to overflowing, then reach out and give it away. Give it back to the person who brought it alive in you. Give it to others who deem it poor in spirit, and give it to the world around you in any way you can. Also, remember that Love has its own time, season, and reason to come and go. You cant neither stop from coming into your life and nor stop from going from your life just as you cant stop people from dying. You can only embrace it when it comes to you but when it chooses to leave you then there is nothing you can do and there is nothing you should do either. However, you should feel luck and out of the blue moon that God has chosen you to be "fallen in love" out of the millions of people standing in the line still waiting to find a love of their life.
In the end, I want to quote the following lines, "If you keep your heart open then it will definitely come again in your life." I want to quote few lines of a beautiful poem Falling in Love is Wonderful from Harry Kottler,

Falling in love is wonderful.
Falling in love is sublime.
Falling in love is wonderful.
I fall in love all the time.

Falling in love is wonderful.
I fall in love with all I meet.
Falling in love is wonderful.
I greet my beloved on every street.

Falling in love is wonderful.
It's not grave; it is floating on air.
Falling in love is wonderful.
I fall in love with both the ugly and the fair
.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

"We are the World"
(One of the best songs of all times...I really love the lyrics. Its close to the heart, and is suited to current scenario.)

There comes a time
When we head a certain call
When the world must come together as one
There are people dying
And it's time to lend a hand to life
The greatest gift of all

We can't go on Pretending day by day
That someone, somewhere will soon make a change
We are all a part of God's great big family
And the truth, you know love is all we need

[Chorus]
We are the world
We are the children
We are the ones who make a brighter day
So let's start giving
There's a choice we're making
We're saving our own lives
It's true we'll make a better day
Just you and me

Send them your heart
So they'll know that someone cares
And their lives will be stronger and free
As God has shown us by turning stone to bread
So we all must lend a helping hand

[Chorus]
We are the world
We are the children
We are the ones who make a brighter day
So let's start giving
There's a choice we're making
We're saving our own lives
It's true we'll make a better day
Just you and me

When you're down and out
There seems no hope at all
But if you just believe
There's no way we can fall
Well, well, well, well, let us realize
That a change will only come
When we stand together as one

[Chorus]
We are the world
We are the children
We are the ones who make a brighter day
So let's start giving
There's a choice we're making
We're saving our own lives
It's true we'll make a better day
Just you and me

Monday, August 25, 2008

The Road Not Taken
by Robert Frost


(This is a beautiful poem which I found while googling for some motivational poems..its worth reading more than just once..)


Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that passing there
Had worn them really about the same
, And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I -
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

आज हुआ है जन्म गोपाल का.......

आज मेरे गोपाल का जनम हुआ है
धूम मची है आज मथुरा मे
हुआ है आज कोलाहल नन्द गाओ मे
क्योंकि आज आया है गोपियों का किशन
आज नाचेगी राधा मस्ती मे
क्योंकि आज आया है केतकी-नंदन यशोदा के आँगन मे
आज मेरे गोपाल का जनम हुआ है,
आज मेरे माखन चोर का जन्म हुआ है,
आज मुरली मनोहर, नीलकंठ, आया है
इस संसार को पाप से मुक्त कारने
जैसे उसने अर्जुन को गीता पाठ पदाया था
वैसे ही वो आया है हमें भी वो ही पाठ पदाने
की तू अपना कर्म कर और फल की चिंता ना कर
और धरम और अधर्म की इस लड़ाई मे,
जीत हमेशा होती है धर्म की
यह ही पाठ पदाने आज आया है नन्दलाल
हमारी इस छोटी सी बगिया मे
आज मेरे गोपाल का जनम हुआ है
आज मेरे माखन चोर का जन्म हुआ है

आज
जन्माष्टमी के पावन अवसर पर
मैं येही दुआ करता हूँ की लड्डू गोपाल
हमारी ज़िन्दगी को भी कर दे रोशन
मैं अपनी छत पे बैठा यह सोच रहा था
की यह दुनिया कहाँ जा रही है
गर मैं सोचता हूँ की यह दुनिया जा रही है
या हम कहीं और जा रहा हैं
फिर मुघे ख्याल आता है
की हम समय के आगे चल रहे हैं
दौड़ रहे हैं ज़िन्दगी की खींचा-तानी मे
मैं अपनी छत पे बैठा लोगों की भीड़ को देखता हूँ
और ख़याल आता है
की कहीं हम अपने काम मे इतने घूम तो नहीं हो गए
की अपने अस्तित्व को ही भूल गए हैं
मैं अपनी छत पे बैठा अपने आप को देखता हूँ
फ़िर अपनी घड़ी को टटोलते हुए
निकल पड़ता हूँ, उसी भीड़ मे,
जिसमे सब जा रहे हैं
तनहा
अपनी मंजिल की तलाश मे
उस मंजिल की ओउर जो कभी दिखाई नहीं देती
बस एक धुंदली सी शक्सियत नज़र आती है
मैं अपनी छत पे बैठा यह सोचता हूँ
की हम कहाँ जा रहे हैं !!
आज इतवार है, आज अक और वीकएंड ख़तम हो गया। अब फ़िर से शुरू हो जायेगी काम की भागा-दौर, अब फ़िर से लोग भागेंगे ज़िन्दगी की सड़क मे, और फ़िर से होगी खींचा-तानी और एक दूसरे को नीचा दिखने के लिए लोग लग जायेंगे, जुट जायेंगे। आज वीकएंड ख़तम हुआ, और ख़तम हुआ आराम करने का।

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Hindu-Muslim bhai-bhai!
So, are you a hindu or a muslim? Because, if you are a muslim then you can't get admission into this society. I wonder whether we are really living in a so-called secular state. "SECULAR"! meaning, "not pertaining to or connected with religion". But, still, our politicians divide our country into separate religions in order to rule on ourselvs. I sometimes feel that whether were better off in British rule or not. Is this the nation for which the freedom fighters, such as Subhas Chandra Bose, Chandra Shekher Azaad, Rajguru, Sukhdev, etc..laid their lives.

Why is it that muslims are considered as "minority community"?

In the name of a secular nation, are we trying to present a wrong impression. What is the future we are preseting to the coming generation. The new generation is very intelligent, smart, and hardworking. GOD, had created human beings but its us humans who has divided among different religions, caste, sect, and creed, and even color. God has sent us all equally, and has given same kind of organs. Does any human being has a different kind of heart or liver, or anyone has "Hindu" mentioned in their heart, and others have "Muslims" mentioned in it. The answer is, "No". Then, who are we to divide ourselves into different religions.
Are we trying to prove that we are right, and God is wrong? India is one of the largest democratic country, and it is in this nation where people of dfferent communities live, whether it is hindus, muslims, sikhs, christians, and so on.

Today its Janmashtmi, and its today when Lord Krishna was born to kill his Devil uncle "Kans". I dont know whether it is true or not, but its just rather depends upon your realization and belief. And, if its true, then lets pledge to kill the demons of dividing ourselves into different religions, and make this a better to place to live in.
Wish you a happy Janmashtmi day to every "INDIAN" of any cast or creed.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

एक पल के लिए खुशी दी
फ़िर गम देके चली गई
वो सपनो मे आके मेरे
मुघे दीवाना बना के चली गई

वो मेरे इतने पास थी
फ़िर भी लगता था जैसे दूर है
अब मुघसे इतना दूर है
पर लगता है दिल के करीब है

यह दिल भी कितना अजीब है
जब कोई पास होता है
तो वो दिखाई नहीं देता
गर वो चला जाता है
तो पता चलता है उसकी अहमियत

Friday, August 08, 2008

सपने

आह्खों में है धेह्रों सपने
उनको पूरा करने की चाहत
लेके चले है जिंदगी की रह में
पर नहीं संभालता दिल
जब टूट जाते है वो सपने
पर एक उम्मीद है इस दिल में
की कल सवेरा होगा
कल फ़िर से उजाला होगा
कल का सूरज एक नई किरण लेके आएगा
कल फ़िर से एक मैं एक और कदम चलूँगा
कहाँ है तू

कहाँ है तू
इक धुन्दला सा चेहरा है तू
आँखों में सपने लिए
उसको पूरा करने का ख्वाब है तू
जब भी में आँखें बंद करता हूँ
बस तुघे ही अपने पास पाटा हूँ
पर नहीं दिखती तुम्हारी सूरत मुघे
इतने पास रहके भी क्यों इतनी दूर है तू
मेरे दिल के करीब रहके
क्यों जिंदगी का पास नहीं है तू

Monday, July 21, 2008

“Early to bed and early to rise!”

This is an old saying, which our parents and grand parents say it to do every day. However, I wonder sometimes how many of us manage to go early every day to rise up early in the morning. In this age of Information Technology, when so many of us software professionals find ourselves busy whole day and night, it becomes really difficult to got to bed early, and with the tight deadlines and weekly calls from the US makes our life utterly miserable. Its not that we like it but it has made our bodies stiff, and thus increasing to lot of problems such as high blood pressure, blood sugar, etc. So, what do we do? Can we say “NO” to our dear client just because we have to go early to bed and rise-up early? What shall we do so that we remain fit? It’s a hard nut to crack because it is very difficult to say NO to the client, and more so when our project manager will not like more than the client itself. Then, the best thing to do is to manage our time judiciously. Its easier said than done as “managing the time is tougher task for most of us today.” But, this is also a reality that Time is only what we need to manage. It is only us who can decide how to manage our time. Just think about those tasks you do throughout the day and that are meaningless. If you think those tasks are taking your lot of time, cut down upon them. See if you can manage to convince your client to have the daily/weekly calls a little early so that will allow you to reach home early. Just think what difference it will make to your lives when you reach home early, and go to bed early. It will make your life a whole lot better. Once you rise early, make it a habit of going for a morning walk. You can start with a 30-minute morning walk or even a brisk walk. This will make you will feel fresh and energized throughout the day. It is said that if you walk daily in the morning, it stretches your mind and your soul. I want to quote the following lines from an article about walking, “It is dynamic mind & body process which creates a sense of rhythm. As you listen to your own silent rhythm, the pulse of life, your own heartbeat - you become whole, a complete man - fit in Mind, Body and Soul.” Source: http://www.healthnwealth.in/morning-walk.html.

A daily walk helps you to not only relax your mind but it also allows you to reduce weight and build lean muscle. It promotes positive mental health, including higher levels of confidence. While a daily walk in the early morning is really helpful, you can also go for other techniques once you rise up early such as Yoga.

For those who can’t find time to walk in the early morning, you can still make the benefit of walking. You can make use of the stairs instead of the regular lift in the office or you can prefer to use a public transport, and it is better if the house is pretty far away from where you need to take the public transport. Walking is the most natural form of physical exercise that gives you strength both physically and mentally. It allows you to stay fit and swift and itinerant.

Make it a habit of walking daily in the early morning. Write it down in your agenda list, and bring it to the top of the list, and make it as a high priority. So, what are you waiting for? Start walking now. After all, it’s your life, and you have to take care about it. No one else will come to rescue you.

START WALKING NOW!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

When the Market shall seem to stabilize, thou shall be the day for technical writers!

“Arre yaar! Fir se gir gayi! Market to yehi hai haal”

No, these are not the words from a new Hindi movie but instead these are words of a person who is a keen observer and follower of stock market.

With the market crashing each day, and every day you hear that stock market is going down and declining, it has become an immense cause of worry for any individual whether salaried or self-employed. A salaried individual has their own worries as they feel what their company will do to them in the current market scenario. With the current market scenario, it seems to me that an employee needs to stick around wherever they are. Gone are the days of job hopping with high salaries. In addition, gone are the days when you might have earned through stock market. The people who earned a huge amount of money were lucky enough. And, then the news comes about the high-rise in inflation rate. So the worries are not to be stopped. They in turn pile one on another. And, they keep on coming, one by one. The day starts with a good morning sun rise, and we wish that the stock market will get up today but only to realize the worse is still to come.

The experts though believe that nothing is lost as the market is now for those who are willing to take risks on a longer term. The current market trend is not for those who want profits through short-term investments. But, still, as a common man, I feel that if my money is on stake then will it going to recover the losses in the long run. I feel the pinch of heat going upon me when I see the amount of losses I have incurred until now.

But, with the current market scenario, where do I as a technical writer stand by in this industry? Sometimes, I realize that are there any jobs in the market to offer for technical writers. It’s that time where the companies are cutting down their costs to save each and every penny of money. And, with Technical Writing being still considered as a support function, I feel that why will a company want to spend so much in hiring a technical writer. They would instead want to hire a technical writer on a contract basis or pay the technical writer on an hourly basis. But, this is not good for technical writers. Today, the jobs for technical writers seem to be in scarce and it seems that now the attrition rate will go down in the companies. It is that time where we need to specialize in certain skills or even cross-train ourselves in different areas within the industry. There is so much to do, and there is so much to offer in the industry. Remember the saying, “Jack of all and master of none.” So, now the time has come to be a jack of all the tools and principles because you can’t be a master of one technology as you may never know whether that technology will be of use tomorrow. The market has become really unpredictable and with this unpredictable nature you can never be sure what’s in store for the near future. But, let us not be pessimistic. As, they say that there are always the dark side in a life.

So, lets be positive and move ourselves towards the building a better future. The economy will recover one day or other, and return with a bang; it will take time though. Meanwhile, the time has come to sharpen our tools and get a formalized education. This is a lesson for all those who have wanted to earn money with a bang. That’s not the case now as it is high time to make ourselves worth it, and prove that we really deserve to be there in this industry based on our experience and skills. Last but not the least, I would like to quote the few lines from a Hindi song of the latest Hindi movie released last Friday:

“beete kal se hum ko seekh jaana
naye kal ke kal-2 se pal-pal sajana hai”

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

jaaniye heeriye
jaaniye heeriye
mere mann ye bata de tu
kis or chala hai tu
kya paya nahi tune
kya dhundh raha hai tu
jo hai ankahee jo hai ansuni
woh baat kya hai bata
Mitwa kahein dharkanein tujhse kya
mitwa yeh khudse toh na tu chhupa

Heard those lines somewhere. YES! many times in the movie "Kabhie Alvida Na Kehna when Sharukh sings in the Football stadium. These lines make me realize the purpose of my living on this earth, why I am here on this earth and what am I doing.

"
kya paya nahi tune
kya dhundh raha hai tu"

What have you achieved so far, and what are you searching for? It clearly depicts your thought, allows you to THINK that what is it that you want from life, and do something about it. Its hight time to get up and be recognized in this world which is full of opportunities.

"Mitwa kahein dharkanein tujhse kya
mitwa yeh khudse toh na tu chhupa"

Listen to your heart as it is your heart that will tell you the truth, and it is your heart that cannot allow to hide anything from yourselves.


THINK about it.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Today, I'll turn 31. Phew, seems a lot though. It means to have shades of gray or it means to have sent 31 long years but still not have achieved what I want to in this journey of life. It means though that I am still travelling and I have miles to go before I sleep, reach my last destination.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Currently, I am reading a book called “How to Grow Rich? By Napoleon Hill”, which clearly states the facts about how to grow rich?

Well, though there is no book that could teach you to earn money; but Napoleon Hill states few facts that help you to grow your mind, and be persistent with your thoughts in order to grow rich. It is essential for you keep your energy levels high and always keep yourselves charged up. It is essential for you to understand the importance of esteemed desire. It is the burning desire of money that convinces you of acquiring it. No matter, how hard work you do; until and unless you have that burning desire, you wont be able to acquire riches.

To grow rich, you need to keep away yourselves from various ghosts of fear, such as fear of poverty, fear of criticism, fear of ill health, fear of old age, fear of loss of someone, and last but not the least fear of death. These fears reflect your state of mind. Its your mind that allows you to think, to have thoughts of acquiring the world’s best riches. These fears will hinder your thoughts, and would come in your way in acquiring riches. You also must of faith in yourselves while acquiring riches.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

A candle light dinner

Rani was so excited today as she was going to have dinner, a candle-light dinner with her husband, Ramesh who is coming home early. She had prepared some finest dishes for him, his favorite’s ones, and have recollected some of his favorite DVDs from the DVD store, and will be playing that once he comes in. It will be a perfect night for her and that too after a long time since we got married three years back. She could still remember that eventful day..how can she forget it! Ramesh's parents had come along to our house to meet them. It was that typical arranged marriage stuff as her mom's sister-in-law had arranged a match for her. According to her, Ramesh would be the one of the most wonderful person on earth, and I would be the lucky one.

Anyways, here she was waiting for her husband after 3 years of marriage, excited about the fact that he himself had asked to have a candle-light dinner with her, and nowhere else but at our own home. She asked him in the morning, "Darling, why don't we go to some restaurant?" He replied, "No, sweetheart. I want to be all alone with you, and want to have some intimate relations with you." That word "intimate" generated a kind of dizziness among her..but nevertheless, Indian wives are supposed to follow what their husband says. At least, this was what was said to Rani by her mother on the day of her marriage.

An then, suddenly, there was a knock at the door. It has to be Ramesh. He had promised to come early today so it had to be him. But, it was quite an unusual knock and was getting harder and harder...she slowly went closer to the door. She was afraid for a while as she heard in the news that there is a bogeyman wondering around our locality, and has already brutally murdered two housewives. This thought suddenly bought shivers to me, and she suddenly felt a little weak.

She looked from the peep hole..no one was there. She took a deep breath. At last, the person has gone. She turned around, and as soon as she started to move away from the door, it started to slam again. She turned around with a bang, and started to take step backwards slowly to move forward...she looked nervous. Suddenly, the door was banging even harder, and it frightened her even more. Then, again, it went silent. Now, the lights went off. There was darkness all around.

"Oh! Shit." she thought to myself. The inverter was also running out of battery. She had told Ramesh in the morning only to replace the battery, and he had consoled me that he will do it during this weekend. "But, what am she supposed to do right now?" she told to herself. "This darkness is going to kill me. Please, God! Help me. Don't let me die in the hands of this bogeyman." she pleaded before the God because once her grandmother had told her that if you are in danger, and you ask for something, God will always be there for you to help you. She turned to move towards the kitchen, and I turned on the gas stove. She lit the candle from the gas stove, and turned it off. She started to move towards the dining hall along with the candle. Suddenly, someone pulled her from behind, and put one over my mouth so that she couldn't shout, and with the other hand, tied both of her hands to her back. Then, he put tape on my mouth, and then moved to bring out his dagger from his pocket. She could only see his eyes as he was wearing a mask on his face, and I went pale when She saw dagger approaching her belly. Suddenly, a power came within her, and she kicked him hard on his stomach that allowed her to run hard for her safety. She quickly ran towards the bedroom. He came running towards me, and he caught hold of my legs. She bit his hands to release her legs from his knuckles, and then he quickly ran inside her bedroom, and slammed the door. He stood outside, started to bang the door, as if trying force it open. She pulled the bed, and threw it before the bed so that he couldn't open the door. Suddenly, the banging stopped. I could hear him speaking on his cell phone.

"She has locked herself from inside. What shall I do now?" He said. Then, there was a pause, and he said, "What? Are you serious? No, I cant. What if something goes wrong?" He said again, I am not going to do this." "What was it that someone was asking him to do?" she thought to herself. Her heart started to race with speed. She could hear her heartbeat in the dark, and she was sweating. Suddenly, she could hear the phone ringing. It was coming from downstairs as the phone was kept in the drawing room. "Shit" she told to herself. "What will I do now? What if he is standing outside? what if Ramesh is there on the phone. I could tell him about this thing, and he could help me take out of this. The phone kept on ringing. I slowly started to move towards the door, and pulled the bed a little, and peeped outside only to see no one outside. "Where the hell has he gone?" she told to herself. Her heart suddenly started to pound again. She slowly pulled the door open, and went downstairs, and picked up the receiver. She said in a trembling voice, "Hello! Whos this?"

"Sweetheart, what happened? What took you so long in picking up the phone?" said Ramesh. It was Ramesh, and I felt at ease. She started to cry, and told him that a man had barged inside our house, and was trying to kill me. "What?" He said shocked probably. "What are you telling?"

She told him that it was serious, and someone was deliberately trying to kill me. "Please save me, honey. I don't want to die."

"OK OK" He said. "Calm Down, first, and tell me where he is?"

I looked around only to find him nowhere. "He is not there, now" I told him.

"Sweetheart, you must be dreaming. It must be your own imagination."

She started crying as Ramesh did not believe her that there was someone in the house, trying to kill me. She said in sobbed voice, "There is someone in this house. Why dont you believe me dammit?"

"OK OK!". He said, "Do one thing. Close all the windows and lock it from inside, and do not open the door to any stranger until I come. As soon as she could say, Yes, someone pulled her again from behind, and pulled the phone cord and tied it over her neck. He was there again..she had told Ramesh, that he is trying to kill her. And, now, everything went blind befire her. She could hear Ramesh's last words, "I will be there in the evening, and we will have a candle-light dinner". Suddenly, she started to realize that she was dying. She could hear her mother's voices, she could hear herself screaming at her mother to let her go to the park, and she even see that she was hugging her maa & paa. And, then, suddenly, there was something that caught her eye. It was a dagger. It must have dropped from his hands on the floor in order to pull the cord. She caught hold of the dagger, and stabbed it on his belly. This loosened the grip of his hands, and cord went loose. She was stunned for a second, and then fell on the floor, as if she was unconscious. The man was lying in the pool of blood. Suddenly, she could hear the door open. A man stepped inside. She could hear the footsteps but she was in no position to get up on her own as she was too weak. She kept lying on the floor as if in an unconscious state. The man went close to the bogeyman’s body first, and said "What a waste of life? I told him to kill her and win the 5 lakh lottery." "Anyways, the money wasn't there for him maybe." said the stranger. Suddenly, she felt to recognize the voice but she wasn't able to hear him as he was speaking in a mild tone. He came towards her, and slowly knelt down, and said "Sweetheart, Look what a candle-light dinner I have got for you." and she could hear him laughing. And, this surprised her, and it shocked her even more. She felt like crying. So it was him..she couldn't believe herself...maybe he is someone else. "OH God! It shouldn't be him." she pleaded before GOD as she loved her husband so much and she couldn't imagine why he betrayed her, why did he wanted to kill her? Why? Why only me? She was suddenly lying there feeling both the pain in her body and in her heart, realizing the harsh truth of her life that her husband had tried to kill me but the question why he did so arose more often now.

She could sense that Ramesh had come close to her face, and she suddenly her eyes with a bang. Ramesh stood there, stunned, and in a state of shock that I was still alive.

"Why did u do this to me?" I asked him. "Why do you want to kill me?"

And, suddenly, the attacker came nowhere from behind and tried to stab her again. Rani bent down in an event to save myself, and the attacker stabbed Ramesh instead. There was silence for a moment, and she was trying to realize what has happened at that moment. Ramesh had tried to kill her, but instead he died his own fate. He is no more now. She will be now called the widow of Ramesh Khurana.

After Five Days

It has been five days since the boogeyman killed Rani’s husband, and she was been consoled by her parents and relatives. Suddenly, there was a knock at the door. She got afraid as it was the fateful night that had killed her husband with that knock at the door. She opened to door, only to greet a handsome looking man, standing there. It was the Ramesh’s insurance agent. Rani asked him to com inside, and he handed her over the insurance papers to be signed. She completed all the formalities only to receive a cheque of two crores. She started to sob before him, holding the cheque in her hand, and saying, “What will I do of this money?” He consoled her, and said, “Please, Ma’am. You have the whole life in front of you. This money can give you all that which you want.” She stopped crying, and he asked her permission to leave. As he left, Rani closed the door behind him. Now, it was the telephone bell to catch her attention. She said, “Hello! Who’s this?” She then said, “Ok, I have the cheque. Yes I am coming.”

Rani went to the bedroom, and came outside with the changed outfit. She went to the bank to collect the money. Then, she came outside the bank where a car blocked her way. She opened the door of the car, and sat inside. There was the man wearing the mask sitting on the driver’s seat. She pulled the mask over his head, only to see Ramesh in front of her. She put up a gentle smile on her face, and they both hugged each other, kissed for a while. Rani thought to herself, “It had to be his plan. He was the Mr. Perfect.” She always had said, “This plan is going to fail. It wont work.” But Ramesh always had consoled her saying, “Don’t worry..it will work, and it will fetch us a million of rupees and give us a lifestyle which we cant even dream of.” She started to see the images of how ital happened. How the bogeyman came from behind, trying to stab her, and how she bent down, and then how the bogeyman went forward to stab Ramesh only to allow himself to fall down. And, then Ramesh tried to catch hold of him, and stabbed him on his face. He wounded his face so much so that no one can recognize his face. He then quickly exchanged his clothes with the bogeyman, and according to the plan Rani was already there to send Ramesh throw outside the window so that everyone feels that it was the bogeyman who had killed Ramesh, and had run away. Rani had erased all the traces of evidence that would even arouse suspicion. “It was a perfect plan. It had to be.” Rani thought to herself. She hugged him again, and said to him, smiling, “Darling, What about the candle-light dinner?” They drove away taking the money along with them.

Friday, May 16, 2008

“DITA”: The Buzzword in Technical Writing

A lot is being talked about DITA these days—most job descriptions in technical writing require it. Read on to know what it is all about.

DITA (Darwin Information Typing Architecture), pronounced as Di-tah, was first developed by IBM in the 1960s. It is a data model used for structuring and authoring technical content. But you might ask, why Darwin as a part of its name? Named after the environmentalist Charles Darwin, and based on his theory, DITA uses the principles of specialization and inheritance while developing the information.

So, what’s special about DITA? DITA reduces the developing costs associated with developing a technical documentation. It uses the topic-based architecture. Therefore, it helps you to develop smaller chunks of content instead of developing large portions of content as compared to traditional form of documentation. DITA helps you to classify the “complex” and “complicated” information into small chunks that can be easily understood by the user. It allows you to alter the current documentation, and then reuse it elsewhere. It allows you to concentrate on providing the task-based information to the end-user—it helps the user to do or learn something quickly. It allows you to design new information more easily and consistently.

DITA is based on various features, which have been a base of research for decades in the methods of technical communication, such as:

  • Its topic-based architecture offers flexibility in the content by ordering or reordering the topics in order to create any kind of documentation for the product.
  • It provides topic specialization, which is a process by which DITA lets you define your own topic types from existing ones.
  • It helps you to save time of manually creating the style sheet.
  • It allows you to leverage the advantages of XML architecture in various areas such as content or format separation, consistency in the content structure, and portability.
  • It allows you to write content in the form of modular topics, as compared to the conventional book. This helps you to easily reuse the topics in different deliverables.
  • It includes extensive metadata, which enables the users to find the topics easily.

Deliverables Produced by DITA

The DITA Open Toolkit released by IBM helps you to convert the content developed in DITA into various formats. Some of these formats include:

  • PDF
  • XHTML
  • Microsoft Compiled HTML Help
  • Eclipse Help
  • Java Help
  • Oracle Help
  • Rich Text Format

The Future is bright!

Today, DITA is a popular industry standard for technical communication. Sooner or later, it will become a de facto standard for not only technical publications but also for content management and dynamic publishing applications including XML-based dynamic publishing.



Creative Commons License
DITA”: The Buzzword in Technical Writing is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 2.5 India License.
Based on a work at akapoor.blogspot.com.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Am I a “Good” Writer?

Many times, I ask myself a question that whether I am a “good” technical writer or a “bad” technical writer. I wonder what will be the definition of Good and bad technical writer. Being a technical writer, it is my job to put scientific and technical information into easily understandable language. I must empathize with my audience because it’s the audience who will appreciate my efforts, and not the client. Technical writing is a noble profession because it brings me closer to my audience, and allows me to convey only one meaning to the audiences. As a technical writer, I must not write in complex sentences filled with jargon and impressive words. When I started my first job as a technical writer, I had certain doubts in my mind such as whether this job will interest me or whether I will be able to earn enough money compared to my colleagues who earn a lot of money, or whether I would be able to communicate well with the programmers/developers. However, after having work for so long years as a technical writer, I have found an interest in this field. Now, I look back and realize what might have been the effective tips and techniques I got from my peers and managers to come at this level.

Tips and Techniques
Here are few technical writing tips/techniques to differentiate between good and bad writing.

  • THINK BEFORE YOU WRITE: As a technical writer, it is essential that you must think before you start writing a document whether it is a user manual, a proposal, or any training manual. It is extremely important that you must analyze a product, process, and procedure that need to be documented. You must first understand yourself clearly what you are writing about. It is as good as saying that “Put yourselves in your audience’s shoes”. Think how your audience will react to the product or a system. As a technical writer, you must consider yourselves as an "advocate" for the user, which means that you explain a system clearly from the audience’s perspective, anticipating the questions and problems of an average user. In this way, you may even provide suggestions to the system or procedure while is in the design phase.
  • KISS: The word "KISS" means, keep it simple and stupid. When I say simple and stupid, what am talking is to keep your document simple and you should not make use of drawn out and complex sentences in the document.
  • ALWAYS FOLLOW THE TASK-BASED METHODOLOGY”: I found this heading from a website, and found it interesting. Now, you must be wondering what this “task-based approach” is. Consider a scenario where you got a host of information from a team of developers / programmers, and now you begin your phase of writing. While you documenting (user manual, training manual, or any proposal document), you might confuse yourselves to put all these details and give a proper shape. Thus, you must follow a task-based approach which means that you should always break a particular concept into different tasks. This will affect in structuring your document properly. A task-based approach allows you to analyze what tasks will the audience of your document want to perform. This will help you to benefit in terms of organization, readability and usability of a document. For example, consider a scenario where you wish to write a user manual for MS Word. For this, you should first describe how to start MS Word, create a new document, print a document, and work with a document and save the document. However, some of the technical writer might not agree with me as they would feel that a structured-based approach will be definitely a good option to write a document. It is certainly not wrong to use a structured approach as it is also essential to include structural information if your document is to be complete. However, you must understand from the audience’s perspective that an audience always wants first of all to accomplish a task, and then find out about the unessential details.
  • AVOID USAGE OF PHRASES IN TECHNICAL DOCUMENTS: As a technical writer, when you should keep a document simple and sweet, it also becomes essential to avoid any usage of phrases in your document. These phrases may complicate a sentence and may even prove to be dull and boring. For example, you mustn’t use phrases such as “afford an opportunity to”, “in view of the fact that”, “prior to”, “with reference to”, and “for the purpose of”. Instead, you should use simple words such as allow, because, before, and about which have the same meaning but have a soothing effect to the audience.
  • ALYWAYS MAKE USE OF ACTIVE VOICE: While you are writing a document, always remember to use active voice instead of passive voice. This makes your document interesting to read and even helps you to avoid using any lengthy sentences. Active voice usually is shorter and more direct than a passive voice, which is more complicated and lengthy.
  • AVOID VERBOSITY: This is the most common tip that you may find in most of web sites. Verbosity means long-windedness, which means that you must not tell the audience about how much you know about a product or a system. However, you should understand how your audience will understand your document. For this, always remember to keep your sentences in a document as concise as possible. Keep your sentences crisp and make it interesting to be read.
  • ORGANIZE USING HEADINGS: It is always said that a “heading” often summarizes a particular section for what you want to say to the audience. A heading may allow your audience to browse your document, and even skip certain sections that might not of immediate interest to the audience. Thus, it becomes utmost essential to organize your document with proper headings such as “Creating a Document”, “Saving a Document”, or “Closing the Application”. In addition, it is also recommended to use a “gerund” form while writing your headings. A gerund is a verbal that ends in -ing and functions as a noun. The term verbal indicates that a gerund, like the other two kinds of verbals, is based on a verb and therefore expresses action or a state of being. A heading should not also mislead an audience. It should clearly depict the contents of that section.
In the end, I would like to quote that Technical Writing, though might look a boring profession to some people as it involve a lot of writing but it also at the same time helps the audience to understand a complex product or a system. So, take on the flight of technical writing but before that do always remember to fasten your seat belts which tighten you for your safe journey.


Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Finally, India have WON!

Wait! not the test match but the battle as truth prevails...and in the midst of all this, cricket is the real winner. Australians may have won their 16th test, but many people know how they have won it. Everyone was watching it..and the SUNDAY will be marked in the historical of events. Thanks to the cricket lovers in India with the help of whom BCCI supported their team, and forced the ICC to do justice to India. However, what lost cant be won as WE have already lost the test series!

Also, many congratulations to media. This is what media can do......

Monday, January 07, 2008

These days there is a buzz round the corner in every news channels about Harbhajan Singh being banned for three tests, and India losing the second test because of poor umpriring decisions. Ricky Ponting, the captain of the "world champions" Australian team says they had played the match in true spirits. I didnt see it, and neither any cricket lover may have seen it. Australia may have won the ecord 16th test but how did they won it, thats a question. Maybe, no one will remember how they won the record test but still they will always have a guilt feeling within inside for what tehy have done. They will realize it sooner or later, somewhere down the line.

An article in rediff.com quoted saying, "It is shameful this splendid test match, won in such a remarkable fashion by the indomitable Australians, has left such a bitter taste," wrote Mike Coward, veteran cricket writer."

All this hue and cry have been because of two issues, 1. Bad umpiring and 2. Ban on Harbhajan Singh for calling Symonds a "Monkey". I will not talk about the umpiring as it can happen with any test side..but Ban on Harbhajan Singh was really not expected. Recently, I was reading an article in CNN-IBN, "Monkey business? Symonds compared to Hanuman". Autralian newspapers have compared Andrew Symonds to Lord Hanuman who Hindus worhip. Soon, this news will splash in each and every news channels, and maybe some political parties even ask an explanation from the newspaper to compare Symonds with Hanuman. But, the main point is about the racial abuse that Andrew Symonds have complained about harbhajan singh to have called him a monkey. First of all, I would like to tell Mr. Symonds that the word "Monkey" is nowhere near the "Racial Abuse". It could be a racial abuse if he would have called him a black and so on....Whatever maybe the case, if Harbhajan Singh did call him a monkey then someone might have heard him except of Mr. Mathew Hayden and Mr Michael Clarke who have claimed to hear the the "M" word. As a matter of fact "Michael Clarke" even claims to catch the ball off Saurav's bat. So, wither Michael is telling a lie or there is a conspiracy in place against the Habhajan Singh and Indian team. Whatever may be the case, the loser has been the gentelman's game, "CRICKET". Yet, in this crisis, it is so good to see that the whole Indian team and the whole of India stands united to face the crisis.

I even read in an article quoting that "Since the Monkey God is one of the revered idols of Hindu mythology and worshipped by millions, it is surprising it was considered a racist term..."