Thursday, 31 December 2015

The hunt, the hunter and the unlikely prey.

2015 has been the year of search , the hunt.

Hunting jobs, helping other people hunt jobs , and the start of a startup that facilitates the hunt. 

The hunt for a home away from home, a place where the heart can temporarily , if not permanently, reside. An empty home, a furnished home, furnishings for an empty home. 

The hunt for virtual moments of shared knowledge, accomplishments, laughter and happiness. 
Or simply of reconnection.
The hunt for elusive loves, likes, comments and shares. 
The hunt for contentment and peace of mind.

And most of it done in silence ,alone, through a nifty handheld device. Where the finger tips run faster than the ticking of the brain. Where the backspace hides more than what typed says.

The mind boggles at what would have happened if the virtual had not existed. The hunt would have been difficult, I dare say impossible, for the faint-hearted. It probably still is, for millions of uninitiated. For the rest, the hunt is being made easy, a swipe of a finger can get you anything from a laptop to a life partner - 15 day return policy too ! . 

In the process the tables turn. The hunter actually becomes the prey - to endless choices, to discontentment , to a barrage of content that an algorithm thinks you should see. The enabler becomes the prey too - in trying to lure the hunter they dangle a bait, only to get bitten by it in the end. Maybe to predictably perish themselves.

But when has that stopped the brave - hearted ! The fire in the belly continues to burn.
The hunt for new ideas. New ideas for every hunt, for any hunt, for new ways of hunting. 
And the lure of the new bringing in new hunters. 

The journey along the spiral continues. Just as it should.

Looking forward to some real innovations making virtual life even easier. 

2016, you better be better ! 

Monday, 30 March 2015

Cloud Tech 101

“It went up, it went up to the cloud”
“You can’t get it down from the cloud?”

“Nobody understands the cloud, it’s a ****ing mystery.”

... says Cameron Diaz ! Well, here is something that should help !

[Update]: Here is the link to a more detailed article :


Monday, 23 March 2015

Mobile App Review: CultureAlley's English App

Listed by Economic Times as one of the 15 hot startups to watch out for in 2015, CultureAlley brings to the market a unique B2C proposition - A Hindi based English Learning App.

With well crafted modules starting from spelling names to incrementally building expertise in grammar and vocabulary, English App is a class apart from several other Edutainment  based mobile apps.

Strategic Analysis: With only 10% of the Indian population currently speaking English and a growing need for innovative language learning techniques,CultureAlley's English App fits right into the space of making learning entertaining. The app begins with the user spelling his or her name and then carefully leads the user through various levels of learning English. Several other startups in the space like Rosetta Stone, LearnEnglish Grammar, Duolingo etc. each come with their own unique points of differentiation in the edu-tech space, but English App has a competitive edge ,having incorporated several unique techniques together.

PODs: Several unique feature that make the English App fun to use are :

  • Gamification: Well designed games like Cutting Chai are conceptually right on the spot given the target audience and not only help keep the user engaged but also make learning fun.
  • Superior UI/UX: The app is very user friendly and also includes commonly used English words in Hindi ("continue","next") etc. The color tone is fresh and as the lessons progress, navigation and screen flow is seamless.
  • FB/Wiki Integration: The app allows the user to link his/her FB newsfeed and get translation highlights for the key words. This inclusion of the social aspect is one of the most attractive and innovative features of the app.
  • Audio-Visuals: It sure helps to hear each word out loud.And the app scores rather well there. Each new module has some crisp AVs that make things easy for the learner.
  • Help at Hand and Tutor Notifications: Timely assignments from the tutor and online chat facility keep the learner engaged and motivated.   
Revenue Model: Freemium + Ads

Started in Dec 2014, English App is well loved by the investors and by the users as well.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Back to School @ Indian School of Business

This one is dedicated to a new beginning ...

Its been more than a month since my ISB journey started. And what a month of contrasts it has been !!!

Studying instead of reading...Lecture videos instead of movie trailers on YouTube ..Turning ON the AC in Hyderabad instead of Turning OFF the fan in Bangalore

Lack of sleep...lack of food and the most damaging...lack of a monthly salary !

But the spirit of the Software Engineer lives on..thriving on coffee and pizzas ...battling daily deadlines of economics and away for a quick ice cream between 2 meetings...bantering and bickering with the team...meeting people...jamming and partying...though assignments and problem sets and problem packs and projects and case studies and quizzes and examinations !

All in a day's work at ISB.