The Backfire Effect by The Oatmeal

Monday, February 20, 2023
I have always had strongly held beliefs, but over time I have also realized the need to change them as more information is presented to me. The Backfire Effect, a comic strip from The Oatmeal, describes why we should all keep doing that rather illustratively. I’m just here to tell you that it’s okay to stop. To listen. To change. It is okay.

Goodbye Tweetbot

Friday, January 20, 2023
I have been actively using Twitter for years. I joined in late 2009 and have fond memories of using it. From a desktop first, then an iPod Touch using the official Twitter app, and then my old Sony Ericsson K790i by SMS-ing tweets, before switching over to using smartphones and using apps. I did use the default Twitter app for a bit, but Tweetbot was the first iOS app I bought on the App Store in 2013, and added it immediately onto my dock where it stayed ever since. Continue reading...

The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy

Sunday, May 8, 2022
I don’t read much fiction, which makes me a very slow reader. When I started reading The God of Small Things, I had no idea what to expect. I had read some of Arundhati Roy’s essays, but none of her books. I was prepared to be surprised and stunned, but not this… There was something approachable in this book that kept me going. There was honesty that kept me coming back. Continue reading...

Eliud Kipchoge's Profile in the Irish Examiner

Saturday, November 13, 2021
I first learnt about marathons when I went to watch the inaugural Standard Chartered Mumbai Marathon in 2004 with dad. I took the Mumbai local to Churchgate early that morning and walked to the finish line near CST to watch atheles cross the finish line. I was mind-blown when I saw the route in the Times of India the day before. It took the runners through some of my favorite parts of Bombay: the Bandra-Worli Sea Link, the Worli Seaface, the Queen’s necklace. Continue reading...

Electricity Disruption

Monday, November 1, 2021
October 20, 2021 was a gloomy day. Gloomy enough that I had turned on the floor lamp by my desk even before I logged in to work. Just before noon, I was in the middle of an important meeting, listening to a colleague answer my question. About halfway through the answer, my lamp flickered, and then went off. Still trying to focus on the answer, which was starting to stutter, I said to myself, “Sigh, will I need to buy a new lamp now? Continue reading...

iPhone 12 Mini

Sunday, August 22, 2021
I walked out of the house this morning without my watch; one of the rare times I have done that in months. I tried to unlock my phone, and it asked me for my passcode because it couldn’t recognize my face. A few minutes later, same thing again. I wasn’t sure why it kept asking me for my passcode over and over. It felt unusual. And then it hit me: I was wearing my mask. Continue reading...

Following the Science of COVID-19

Saturday, April 10, 2021
For all that has happened over the last year, the pace at which science (and more specifically, biomedical science) has progressed has been awe inducing. We went from having no tests to genome sequences shared with scientists and labs across the world to countries before the virus reached their shores. We watched as epidemiologists (and other experts) figured out how the spread occurs, and what can be done to contain it. Continue reading...

The Three Languages of Politics by Arnold Kling

Monday, March 29, 2021
Now that I think about it, it is not at all surprising that I picked up and read this book. I have been intrigued by language (so much so that getting machines to understand language is my day job!) for as long as I can remember. Observations that change how I see the world intrigue me. How people perceive, understand, decipher and involve themselves in politics has fascinated me over the years. Continue reading...

‘Hey Jude’ at 50: Celebrating the Beatles’ Most Open-Hearted Masterpiece

Tuesday, March 23, 2021
If you ask me my favorite Beatles song, I’m going to choke. But I do know ‘Hey Jude’ is in my top 3. It has to be. I just read this story in the Rolling Stone by Rob Sheffield from a couple years ago, describing the background in which ‘Hey Jude’ came to be, and how it became a signature Beatles song. It truly is one of their greatest. “Hey Jude” remains a source of sustenance in difficult times — a moment when four longtime comrades, clear-eyed adults by now, take a look around at everything that’s broken around them. Continue reading...

The Joys of Being an Absolute Beginner – For Life

Monday, March 22, 2021
Over the last few months, I have been thinking a lot about learning, especially in this last year when there was so much time to just think. I really liked this piece in The Guardian by Tom Vanderbilt. As I read through it, it hits the right notes for me about (adult) psychology, human behavior, the desire to learn and overcoming inhibitions. Like the author, I have wanted to learn how to play chess well for a really long time, but haven’t gotten around to it. Continue reading...
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