Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Islamic Science

Do read HT Goranson's article on Project Syndicate

I was reminded of Al Beruni the Iranian scholar from the ninth century. Al Beruni had visited India and was a known Sanskrit scholar. He had written one of the most comprehensive books on india of that period - Tarikh al-Hind that roughly translates to Chronicles of India. He had also translated some mathematical work by Indian mathematicians.Indian mathematics made its way to europe through the arabs and the persians. Globalization of science!!!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Getting Practical in Controlling Malaria [Project Syndicate]

Dr. Sachs makes an excellent point on the failure of markets to improve the conditions of the poorest of poor. There are large communities for whom "free markets" will only work after a certain threshold quality of life is reached. That threshold is quite low for these people, it involves access to drinking water, food and hygiene.

Getting Practical in Controlling Malaria

by Sachs D. Jeffrey

<p>Many international assistance programs fail because they are badly designed and/or too complicated. The result is that the poor don&rsquo;t get the help they need, and taxpayers in rich countries lose confidence in the use of their aid funds. Read More


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Wake - up pretty girls!!

I found an interesting article on NY Times today.
What's Wrong with Cindrella?

Keeping to toys and kids ....

I frequently visit toy stores to buy gifts for my wife's sister's kids.  It is a fascinating experience to watch marketing work its magic with the parents and kids as well!!  Yesterday, I was trying to get to a couple of toys my nephew wanted and we found one of them, by the skin of our teeth.  A lot of parents were at stores too at about 5.30 PM on the day before Christmas trying to buy "panic gifts" to reinforce their kids' belief in Santa!!

I strongly feel that Santa must be given a honorary place in the echelons of marketing !!  Without him gifts would lack that special meaning and the same Elmo would look a lot less attractive to kids if they realize there was no Santa behind Elmo's appearance at the Christmas tree.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Creativity and Chaos

Saying Yes to Mess - New York Times

NY Times has a cool article on "disorderliness".  I was elated, as I am prone to being more "chaotic" than organized.  Noting that anecdotal evidence is not sufficient to support a general argument, I do state that I noticed some of the smartest people having very chaotic offices :)