Posts Tagged ‘Life’

Humans still beat machines by a mile (or more)

June 3, 2015

There is this constant spiel on how robots can uptake human jobs in the not so distant future. I had my own reservations about that. I for one, had always compared the natural evolution of human processes. For example, we may be writing far less after the invention of typewriter and word processor, but we do write with our mind as often as ever. May be the Input / output medium may not be a piece of paper with a pen, it’s still the organic human mind at work. Advanced robotics or Artificial Intelligence can all come. But to replace our good old neural network that collates and compiles our thinking, they have to go miles.  They need to develop the equivalent of emotion and sense. They need to smell a flower and call it by a name. That, isn’t going to be easy.

So with that basic framework, I chanced upon Marc Andreesen’s post.  He had squared it all up and with illustrations.  Please do read it if you want to get rid of your lump-of-labor inhibition.

Only the chosen one wins…!

May 25, 2012

Never ask “Why is it happening to me…?”

Instead, say “I am the chosen one…!”

Life situations are meant to be accepted than questioned. It is so because not everything is in our control. We can only play with the cards that we are dealt. Still at the first whiff of trouble, we grumble “But, why me?” As if it’s ok if someone else were to go through hell. Let’s call it the loser’s camp.

Every life situation presents itself over a course of time, seemingly not always in a rational, cause-to-effect sequence. That’s when we say things happen at random, future is uncertain etc. But I strongly suspect everything happens with a definitive cause and effect relationship except that we can’t possibly relate every effect to its rightful cause. I may catch fever, but it takes even a trained Doctor to run several tests, try out a few drugs before he could detect the exact cause, diagnose the nature of the ailment and prescribe the right drug. In such unquantifiable situations, the members of the loser’s camp settle for the puzzled pitch “Why is it happening to me…?”

In this camp, people refuse to go about their lives as usual after having asked that “question”.   A sense of resignation slowly takes over as they lose interest in almost everything.   That momentary wallow in self-pity drowns them and those around as well.  They give in to their destiny so readily instead of coming to terms with it or exploring ways to get out of it.  Curiously, asking that question “Why Me” automatically “shifts the blame” to someone or something else besides us for the situation we are in.  It allows us to pass on the responsibility to own up and fix things and makes us a bit less sadder.   Not many realize that the `blame shift’ gets us only a temporary reprieve, without alleviating the misery.   It qualifies us as `escapists’ or `shirkers’ – big time.

Being a shirker – how does that help or pacify us over a seemingly hopeless situation, is a much larger question. We shirk because we delude that we didn’t ask for the misery,  so are no longer responsible to fix it. Things have reached a dead end as far as we are concerned and now it’s somebody else’s problem to find a solution.  We somehow wish it fades as it had come about, by the natural turn of events and with passage of time.  The reprieve that we momentarily experience does not originate from lessened pain, but comes from our delusion that we can `rest easy’ ( now that the blame has shifted).  It gets us the very “rest entitlement” that we have been seeking out.

Can we get any more absurd with our reasoning…?  Never.

Logically, every problem ends only with finding a solution, not by palming it off to someone else.  If you are hungry, it is not enough if someone else eats.  When we face a life problem, it is for us to solve.  If shirking from it calms us down, it shows absence of initiative and drive that is badly needed to get out of the hole.

That brings us to the opposite camp that loves to look at every problem in the eye and deal with it as if (s)he is the chosen one.  Let’s call it the Winners’ Camp.  Anyone who is able to face up to a problem can meet it mid-way and solve it to his/her advantage.  That’s why it is important to think “I am the chosen one”  instead of  asking “Why Me”.  When you do that, you are playing to win by elevating yourself to a higher realm of awareness, rising above every one else to own up, face the problem and crack it.   You are being responsible.  It is emphatic and makes a statement,  instead of  faking a question.  By owning up, you are not whining or even attempting to shift the blame.   You see your affliction clearly and get down to work to get rid of it.   You are courageous and you know how to regain your composure quickly.  You get back up to walk each time you fall down.  Success never eludes you if you play to win.  That’s exactly what you just did by affirming “I am the chosen one”.

…Packing off on holidays…!

April 18, 2012

…So, it’s holiday season for the family.  We have zeroed in on Club Mahindra’s floating cottages on the Ashtamudi backwaters in Kerala to spend our next seven days starting Saturday, the 21st April.  Hope to do some live blogging from my holiday destination too, since it’s my own way of unwinding…The waters, the breeze, the ambience and the cooing birds (hope they are there aplenty) should form a nice backdrop to stir the connoisseur and the casual writer in me.

But right now, it’s not exactly about the vacation.  It’s the anxiety of packing as I keep adding to my check list. Camera charged ? Check. Cell phone chargers packed in..?  Check.  Food coupons carried..?  Check. Swimsuits..?  Check. Cash and Credit cards..? Check.  This is the trouble if you are not just a holiday freak, but are hell bent on giving the family a great time.  If my daughter creases her forehead even once ( ” Papa, we forgot the chargers home, I can’t text my friends..!), it’s enough to screw the holiday fun.  I see them happy and I am thrilled to bits.

What’s adding to the tension is my ever vigilant wife who is taking the flight only on the D day.  Normally if she travels with us, I don’t have to worry about these chores. That’s been her department ever since we got married and my task was simple – Just look ahead to the vacation…Period.

Thank you, Meenakshi…Haven’t said that in a long time…Have I…?