My Windows Mobile story ...

24 March, 2010 | | 8 comments |

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A month and a half since I joined Capgemini and when so much of misconceptions, fun and work pressure wasn't enough to please me, here comes another bombastic event !!! Call it a feat, event or an achievement but it will surely go down as the best in my memory list and my friends who witnessed it. Microsoft India's evangelism wing had scheduled Microsoft Community Tech. days in Capgemini Mumbai, INDIA. It was a three day Tech. event (6-7-8 March, 2010) to showcase Microsoft’s incoming product line and enlighten the crowd with parallel sessions on developer, designer and architect tracks by Microsoft MVP’s (Most Valued Professional) and the other best known in this business. One thing which is to be noted and which was of prime importance - this was the very first time Microsoft had entered into a mutual pact with Capgemini and this guaranteed the presence of some of the top honchos of Capgemini and Microsoft. Adding to the guest list was Capgemini India’s CEO Mr. Baru. High stakes in the event and Microsoft’s organizing team made little mistakes in publicizing this event. Details of the Tech. day sessions found its mention on hoardings put up nearly in all prominent corners of Capgemini Mumbai and Bangalore and also in our Inboxes in the form of newsletters. ADRENALINE RUSH here … For sure !!

The day was 6th March, 2010 and I was to attend my .Net training (running since 20 days now) in my training room with my batch-mates and it meant a loss for me of all sorts coz I had to give the Tech. days a miss. Also, missing all three days was a total pain. Just when I lost all hopes, here enters Ms. Aziza – Capgemini Mumbai’s L&D head. “Capgemini’s CEO would be here to kick-start the Tech. days so we would like the AC’s to be there till that time. I’m sure Alankar, you don’t have any issues ?”. The answer was an obvious “No” from my trainer and this brought our entire clan in the cafeteria hall. Ohhh !!! We’re right on time it seems and the Microsoft product showcase began and it started from AutoCollage, then SongSmith, Office 2010, etc. This showcase was followed by a much anticipated keynote by Mr. Baru and then by the MD of Microsoft India and towards the end we were ready to make an exit. But then, MS India’s architect advisor Mr. Ramnish Singh took over and the crowd was just ecstatic with his well timed humour and don’t know for some reasons we were not asked to leave. So here is where the JUICY part of the story begins …

Ramnish Singh acknowledged the fact that he was pleased with the crowd’s appreciation during showcase and he had no doubts that people here love Microsoft products.

But is there somebody over here who can do anything for the company, anything for Microsoft? He’s in love with the company since birth and can do anything, if asked to.”, asked Ramnish.

He said that with a very powerful conviction and the crowd was stunned and sat dumb-founded. This spurned a myriad of thoughts in my mind. It’s true that I’m a Microsoft fanatic and I can’t stand anything against it, I love whatever it does and I tend to think the way it does. I love Microsoft and all its products since I was a kid. So the grunting shout came out from my mouth – “Yes” and my hand popped up. Probably 20 seconds of silence passed by after the question and finally Ramnish Patel was thrilled to see a hand going up. So the entire crowd along with him gave me a stare, a frightening one actually !!!

Are you sure you can do anything? Anything .. ?”, asked Ramnish.

Yes”, I shouted again.

Ohh! A huge round of applause for this guy. Can you please come on stage.

And I obliged.

Ramnish : Please introduce yourself my friend ?

Me : I’m Hardik Shah, I’ve joined Capgemini as an Associate Consultant about a month back.

Ramnish :
Ok good. Do you have a mobile phone ? Can I have a look at it?

Me :
(I popped out my Samsung X210 and was about to give it to him when I noticed a curious Ramnish waiting to check whether it’s a Windows Mobile) I’m so sorry it’s not a Windows Mobile phone !!! (The crowd burst out with laughter)

Ramnish :
What !!! You’re a Microsoft enthusiast and you don’t have a Windows Mobile .. ?

Me : Actually I was about to buy one but was awaiting my next month’s salary. (The crowd again burst out)

Ramnish :
When did you buy this phone ? You seem to be attached to it even now.

Me :
I bought it two years back when I was in my 3rd year of Engineering. It’s worth more than 20,000/- bucks for me coz I bought it with my first salary when I was working as an intern. (The crowd gave me an applause again)

Ramnish :
Ohh !!! Can you please keep this phone here (he pointed towards the pulpit)

Me :
(I obliged and kept the flap-type phone opened up on the pulpit)

Ramnish : What if I break this phone with a hammer.. ? (He shouted and the crowd burst out)

Me :
(I was just clueless as to what he’s upto and what’s going on. I had a puzzled and anxious face)

Ramnish : What if you have to break this phone with your own hand ? (The crowd burst out) Ok. Get me a hammer now !!! (And to my surprise a guy from back-stage got a hammer and passed it over to him) You said you can do anything for Microsoft right .. ? Now break your phone with this hammer. (and he handed the hammer over to me)

(The crowd laughed and rioted as though I was trapped but I was just not aware of this as I was in my own thoughts. It’s true that I value my phone but the love for Microsoft started even before the love for my mobile began and that’s the ANSWER !!! I raised the hammer in the air slowly with fear, anxiety and courage, all together and wacked it towards the phone. Don’t know why, but Ramnish put his hand in between and obstructed the hammer when I was centimeters away from hitting my phone. I was totally confused.)

Me :
You only wanted me to break the phone right .. ? (I meant it very seriously but Ramnish and the entire crowd laughed and shouted very hard. I just stood there confused.)

Ramnish :
(He started nodding heavily and then said) Ohh !!! Round of applause for this guy. This guy can really do anything for Microsoft and for this I’ll give him a small prize. It’s an HTC Phone with Windows Mobile 6.1. You deserve this !!! It’s a brand new phone and you can even collect the warranty card from that guy later if you want. (As he pointed towards a guy standing back-stage)

Me :
(I was thrilled but still confused and don’t know what to say) Thanks. Thank you. Thank you !!! (I was holding the HTC phone and posed for a couple of photographs there before walking out slowly towards my place. The crowd just kept clapping and shouting throughout these moments … )

In more ways than one, I feel victorious, happy, gifted and proud to say I’m mad. And this Microsoft madness just won’t fade, even if I want to kill it !!!

That’s the story and I’m sure all my readers enjoyed it. The story is all true with whatever I remember …

Thanks and Regards,
Hardik Shah [Guru]

Arms race killing economies more than politicians, diseases and recession

07 March, 2010 | | 6 comments |

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Wacky topic and I surely got to start with a wacky and an eye-catching caption for the same. But big promises also mean big expectations which are a strict no-no, so I’ll better keep it simple. :) :)

"Did you know that India spends 20 BILLION DOLLARS as its defense budget considering the fact that hundreds of our civilians and soldiers just die by the day and through the year ?"

Add to the above caption a very shameful and shocking fact that India doesn't even retaliate against the perpetrators, even when it has something-to-be-proud-of defense budget. So what’s the point spending a BOMB on something which we’re not in a position to use ? Surprising it might sound, but this is the case with some of the most developed countries. Need some examples to quote – Russia (know Chechnya ?), Israel, India, etc. So why is that .. ?

Well, a lot of reasons actually and a majority of them might sound puerile and they indeed are. Those who are reading newspapers regularly it’s a revision for them albeit in a humourous manner. The points which I’ll be enumerating will surely remind you of the cat fights we used to have in our childhood days and the very simple do’s and dont’s which we were taught to wear during our school days but unfortunately we swear not to abide by them when we grow up. Still confused and guessing, read the mindset theories behind spending billions on unutilized defense budget

1. The theory of Deterrence :

The very obvious proclivity here is to have an even more powerful toy to keep the opponents in check and at bay.

2. The Threat theory :

Just because everything is calm and in peace means some precarious disaster is anticipated.

3. Dominance in the region means stripping others of the rights which we possess :

I have a patent to manufacture a BOMB so for obvious reasons you cannot and if you oppose I’ll impose sanctions.

4. A firm ingress into external matters means more grip on the current situation :

A smart sportsman is the one who not just knows his own game but even his opponents’.

But don't you think some of the best graduates from the most premier colleges who are running our countries know this ? Yes, they indeed do but as usual with majority of minds even they don't want to slog that extra bit to mitigate this matter and the others have just surrendered to this situation assuming there’s no solution.

So the natural question arises - am I going to provide any solution ? Well not exactly but yes I've got steps to resolve this. I guess it’s a very critical thing to resolve especially knowing that even a bit from that billion of dollars could do enough in areas where it’s actually required. Negotiations, consensus on a particular solution and a commitment to resolve this is the need of the hour.

But who's going to advocate those in power to follow the above paradigm. The answer is " We ". Yes, we can indeed push this initiative and we've got the Web and Google Uncle to back us. So blog about it, tweet it and do whatever is possible.

That's because I still believe it's impossible - I am possible.