Tag Archives: thoughts

A thought…

The firms, in general, that are making money are the ones that hire humans to make computers capable of decision making. The ones that are in trouble are the ones that have computers enable a human to wheel and deal on the phone.

I know about Knight Capital but this seems to be the general trend in the markets.

Currently reading: Dark Pools by Scott Patterson.

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That time of the year…

when you file your taxes and realize you sponsored a part of a babu’s Europe trip to beat Delhi’s summer, while you suffered mid-summer, mid-day power cuts.

#FML in India 🙂

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The Musical Chairs of Investing

Found this while reading an article on Seeking Alpha:

“Investing is rather like the children’s game of ‘Musical Chairs.’ We must dance while the music is playing, knowing full well that when the music stops we shall all be dashing for the few chairs that are there to be taken and we shall fight for them when that time comes, but while the music plays…while the flute is up to the musician’s lips; while the bow is being pulled across the violin… dance we must, or sit out the game on the sidelines.”

– Dennis Gartman

Investing, it seems to me, and many before me have said so, is more about patience than balance sheets or Fibonacci ratios.

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Words’ worth

Had posted this a few months ago…then took it off because it was adding too much entropy to the Universe.

There is a great deal of verbal communication in the world today. Letters,phone calls,emails,chats,blogs(:P)…an infinity of words.

I for one believe that the best communication involves zero or a minimal amount of words.

What a million words of commiseration could not do…a sigh and 6 words did.
It felt like an arm round the shoulder …and all those wise men and women with their words did not realize that that was what I needed.

A few friends and a completely different topic had me laughing on the worst day of my life.

No amount of words can do what one look into the eyes of a friend trying desperately to hold back her tears did.

I went out for dinner once by myself…a couple sat on the table facing me.
The girl was trying to hold back her tears. The guy sat opposite her,not eating …just looking into her eyes…almost soothing her…not one word was said.
I smiled.

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Atlantis

Ayn Rand is one author that has influenced me a lot since I have been reading her work…in fact The Fountainhead is probably the first fiction work I have read must be December 2003. Around the time of sem 3 exam. Since then it has been a tradition to end up reading rand longer than engg textbooks in the PL.
Atlas Shrugged is a rivetting story which is similar to the conditions prevailing today as has been pointed out in a previous post. Here is a passage from this book which I always keep on my desktop …it tells you not to lose hope…to let go of the unjust punishments that we might be subjecting ourselves to. Studying for BE exams often seemed like self inflicted punishment and this passage often gave me hope of a better tomorrow and of finding myself in Atlantis.

“If you fail, as men have failed in their quest for a vision that should have been possible, yet has remained forever beyond their reach—if, like them, you come to think that one’s highest values are not to be attained and one’s greatest vision is not to be made real— don’t damn this earth, as they did, don’t damn existence. You have seen the Atlantis they were seeking, it is here, it exists—but one must enter it naked and alone, with no rags from the falsehoods of centuries, with the purest clarity of mind—not an innocent heart, but that which is much rarer: an intransigent mind—as one’s only possession and key. You will not enter it until you learn that you do not need to convince or to conquer the world. When you learn it, you will see that through all the years of your struggle, nothing had barred you from Atlantis and there were no chains to hold you, except the chains you were willing to wear. Through all those years, that which you most wished to win was waiting for you”—he looked at her as if he were speaking to the unspoken words in her mind—”waiting as unremittingly as you were fighting, as passionately, as desperately—but with a greater certainty than yours. Go out to continue your struggle. Go on carrying unchosen burdens, taking undeserved punishment and believing that justice can be served by the offer of your own spirit to the most unjust of tortures. But in your worst and darkest moments, remember that you have seen another kind of world. Remember that you can reach it whenever you choose to see. Remember that it will be waiting and that it’s real, it’s possible—it’s yours.”
– John Galt to Dagny Taggart,Atlas Shrugged.

Consider these above words carefully…and ask yourself,”Is what I am undergoing worth the effort and the pain?”. I did…and I found my answer. You find yours.

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Reservations about reservations…

The UPA government is going ahead with the proposed reservations.As in a previous post…they don’t really care about us ( copyright MJ). No matter how much we scream and shout it won’t be of much use I guess. As I think about it,the words a friend had put up on his orkut page come to my mind. Here they are courtesy Alistair Maclean via Pratik Gupta.

Beyond anger lies fury, the heedless, ungovernable rage of the berserker, and beyond that again, a long, long step beyond the boundary of madness, lies the region of cold and utterly uncaring indifference.
When a man enters that region, as few ever do, he is no longer himself, he is a man beside himself, a man without all his normal codes and standards of feeling and thought and emotions, a man for whom words like fear and danger and suffering are words that belong to another world and whose meaning he no longer can comprehend.

Alistair MacLean.

Are we there yet…I don’t know…but we surely are getting there. That is what this country and its leaders need to guard against. Youngster after disgruntled youngster,who could have done so much,should not be leaving the country for not just greener but fairer pastures.

The more I think about the current fracas the more it reminds me of the situation of Atlas Shrugged,where driven by the unfair and unjust Directive 289 John Galt and the men of the mind go on a strike. If the most promising and productive people of the country suddenly decide that they will not contribute in any way to the prosperity of that country…it will be hell on earth. That is what this thing is doing to me.

Why should I contribute to the well being of a nation that will take the product of my work and distribute it to those who claim their right to it by their sheer inability to achieve it on their own?
Why should achieving something be made increasingly difficult for some and increasingly easier for others?
It is only when their crutches are taken away that they will know they can run too.

You cannot catch enough fish to feed them all everyday,so you might as well teach them to fish.
I am not against helping anyone to be as well equipped to face life(or exams in this case) as they can but then once you are at an examination there should be no reservations.
This is nothing unnatural…in fact it is the first and foremost of Nature’s Laws:
SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST.
And Newton’s Law tells us what will happen if we do not heed this law of Nature.
EVERY ACTION HAS AN EQUAL AND OPPOSITE REACTION.

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Caste away

With all this talk of reservations and the predicted and perfectly appropriate brain drain…I am left thinking that my status in this country and its state of affairs is that of a Caste-away.
As I watched in horror the future doctors of the country,people my age, getting brutally thrashed I got the distinct feeling that I and people like me did not matter anymore. We form the minority I guess, but then we are not a religious minority, are we?
I debated with myself,and later with a friend whether the President could have done something about it…he could have returned the Bill(as far as I remember Civics…he can).
Even a year ago,I was horrified to find that while my AIR 194 would not get me IITM Communication M Tech…AIR 2000 odd could…he has an extra piece of paper (called the caste certificate) you see.

The TV showed pictures of the youth in Bangalore on the streets…and just for a moment a placard caught my eye:
” WE DREAM…WE WORK…THEY GET IT BY BIRTH”…well said my friend.

I guess the machinery is already rolling…the Constitution has been amended…and there is very little we can do except buy some time…time to drive some sense into the heads of the politicos.
The IITs were called the Iyer Iyengar institutes of Technology…but then we had no choice…the reservations were already so high (especially in TN i guess) that to get decent engineering education you had to get into an IIT.
If this move goes through the IITs and IIMs,the islands of excellence in this unending sea of mediocrity, will drown too…an Atlantis many of us will seek and never find.
The Govt suggests raising the number of seats in the IITs..but do u have the funds to do so? It spends Rs. 1.5 lakh per student per annum…imagine what the extra load will be on the economy. And who will foot the bill…people like us,who stay here and create wealth…not grab undeserved seats and then run away.

If this Bill goes through,it will cause much anguish to my brother and infinitely many others like him.And what will I do…go away from India( after an MTech that I worked my backside off for…not worked a piece of paper for) and send US dollars to my family so that my money won’t fund the education of these undeserving b#$%rds.

In one line…the upper castes need 50% reservation too…after all we are
OBC – OPPRESSED BRAHMIN CASTES.

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