Showing posts from 2018

Minority Rule

History in the large is the conflict of minorities; the majority applauds the victor and supplies the human material of social experiment.  -Will & Ariel Durant [from the book: The Lessons of History]


The men who can manage men manage the men who can manage only things, and the men who can manage money manage all.  -Will & Ariel Durant [from the book: The lessons of History]

Good Decisions

A good decision does not have prejudice, opinion, or belief.  - Krishnamurti 

Buying Art

Are you buying a painting or a story behind the painting? 

TEDSocial Thinking Weekend: Ethics In Tech

Thinking Weekend: Ethics In Tech Technology has caused rapid changes in society, politics, and business. Recently, there has been a backlash against tech companies because of their role in elections,  #metoo movement, and the displacement of non-tech employees. Just like any other corporation, tech companies are working to maximize shareholder returns. Do they have other responsibilities? Should tech companies be treated differently, and if so, why? Inherent in the ad-based revenue model adopted by many tech companies is the requirement to collect and sell personal data, which is becoming increasingly intrusive and sophisticated. Is there anything morally wrong with this? Are consumers of these services responsible for understanding the terms and protecting themselves? As technology continues to disrupt and challenge traditional markets, does government have a role or responsibility to society to minimize and manage the potential negative or harm

Attention And Purpose

Can you have attention without purpose?

True Nature

Your true nature is nothing but an idea created by your mind, over the years, under the heavy influence of social conditioning. 

Evolution And Senses

How does evolution explain the never satisfied human senses, and our ability to do self-harm with sensory indulgence? 


As a group gets bigger, personal identity of the group members shifts towards a smaller subgroup. For example, people, which are members of a very large group, human beings, are willing to kill each other for their smaller subgroup, nation. Similarly, identity shifts towards smaller subgroups within religions, organizations, cities, etc as these groups get bigger. 


Can art contribute more than commentary to society? 

Nature And Society

Social construct is based on natural deconstruct. 

Fiction And Reality

We escape reality with fiction and that changes what we expect from reality. 

Dreams And Reality

It is much easier to sell a dream than to sell the reality. 


Do we have an innate need to trust? 

Growth And Operations

A rapidly growing hierarchical organization hides fundamental operational problems. 

Politics And Age

Politics within a hirerchical organization is directly proportional to its age. 

Competition And Size

Competition within a hierarchical organization is directly proportional to its size.

Truth And Story

A compelling story does not tell you the entire truth. 

Politics And Principles

What are the principles for which a politician is willing to give up power? 

Con Man Vs. Behavioral Economist

A con man understands human nature better than a behavioral economist. 

Identity, Privacy, And Safety

What is the relationship between identity and privacy? Do people living in individualistic societies value privacy more? If identity extends to material possessions then does an attack on the possession feel like attack on self? Why is that the feeling after a minor car accident is very different than the feeling after a minor car break-in?  And, how is privacy related to safety? 


Can a society function without illusions? 


Digitization  =>    Faster Product Development  +  Faster Customer Feedback  +  Faster Market Expansion  +  Cheaper Distribution  +  Cheaper Marketing  +  Cheaper Operations  +  Better Pricing  +  Better Customer Support  +  Better Decisions  =>    Groundwork For Supervised Automation (if you are labeling the data correctly:)) 


It is easier to imagine things that don't exist than to reimagine what exists. 


The good leader perceives others as individuals with motives, feelings, and goals of their own, whereas the poor leader is more likely to perceive others in relation to his own motives and goals.  - Herbert Mayer (sociologist) 


The pursuit of happiness is causing a lot of misery. 


Would you like to stop thinking about a problem that seems impossible to solve? Create a new and bigger problem. 


Media personalization eliminates random discovery and limits the expansion of the mind. 

Management Today

The idea of management comes from the military because that was the first time in human history a diverse group of people who did not know each other were organized to work together towards a common goal. That structure gave us a few principles:   Hierarchy  Command and control  Incentives for achieving the goals  Division of responsibility based on function  Centralized decision making Not much has changed over the last few thousand years. Today, the business world follows many of the same principles. At the highest level, business management is about capital allocation, mainly within an organization, to maximize shareholder returns. To do that, a manager must be good at understanding risk, making decisions, making trade-offs, communication, and putting the right people in the jobs. Middle management is more nuanced. Theoretically, management is an easy concept to grasp. However, the execution of the concept is complex. Having worked in organizations ranging from about


Western civilization is continuously looking for order. Inherently, life is chaotic. There are no simple answers to anything. That causes stress for people. Traditionally, Indian civilization accepts chaos as a part of life. Hence, the idea of living in the present. The west is slowly adopting that idea and questioning the quest of material possessions. Have you noticed people talking about happiness, mindfulness, and yoga? 

Structure And Freedom

There is an inherent conflict between structure and freedom. To achieve any significant goal or to be a member of any group, organization or society, one has to give up few freedoms because any collection of humans to function as one entity requires structure and rules. The irony is that with no structure, human freedoms would be very limited. Imagine if everyone could do whatever they wanted all the time. There was no rule of law, there were no social norms, there was no moral code. What freedoms can you exercise in that environment? Freedom, in essence, is relative. We are limited by conflicting human interests, nature, knowledge, will, and capabilities. 


How would the contemporary society be like with no concept of time? Would we still seek order in life without time?

Wine And Whisky

Wine is the study of subtlety in soft things. Whiskey is the study of subtlety in hard things. 

Intrinsic Value

What is my intrinsic value?


I am so rational that I can rationalize all my irrational behavior. 

Fashion And Credit

Fashion and credit cycles are self-correcting i.e. their wide and easy availability results in their decline. 

Rise And Fall

The fall is much quicker than the rise. 


With millions of lives and many centuries lost to get us democracy, we are still obsessed with kings and queens. 


Beliefs distort reality. 

Startup Pitches

If all you needed was a good pitch to get your startup funded then it says less about your superior communication skills and more about the stupidity of the investor. 

Geek vs. Geek

What is more geeky? A person wearing a bluetooth headset on one ear or someone wearing AirPods in both ears? 


Risk means more things can happen than will happen.  - Elroy Dimson  

Entrepreneur And Investors

A good entrepreneur is excessively optimistic and a good investor is adequately pessimistic. 

Kings And Queens

If cash is king then credit is the queen who is running the world and cryptocurrencies are her illegitimate children that are driving the king crazy. Global debt to GDP ratio is 318% and cryptocurrencies market cap is $420B. 


Opinion without understanding corrupts the mind. 


Creativity and effort towards a goal is inversely proportional to the appealing available alternatives. 


Shared adversity makes better friendships. 


Psychiatrists are very good at defining and explaining things that, for the most part, are made-up  Hence, consistently increasing their market size. Brain is probably the least understood thing in science today. And somehow, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) has hundreds of disorders with subcategories explained in around thousand pages. 

Attachment Theory

Childhood is not the cause of all adult romantic relationship problems. Social conditioning, fiction, and media may have more to do with it. Attachment theory might be too attached to itself. 

Listen For Understanding

When one is eager to speak, one's ability to listen declines. 

Long term vs. short term

There is no long term if you don't survive short term. 


Experience is the understanding of a domain in variable conditions to make good decisions within that domain. It is not the amount of time you have spent doing something. 

Correlation vs. Causation

To see how how the experts confuse correlation and causation everyday, watch financial news and analysis on CNBC or Bloomberg. 

Love And Convenience

Love may conquer all but eventually convenience triumphs over love. 


"Cloth" - a synonym for textile - has the same meaning as "clothe" - to cover. Naked things, like naked people, demand to be covered. In covering nakedness, whether of people or of things, we accomplish these five basic purposes:  1. We protect and insulate  2. We facilitate contact with the world 3. We hide defects and weaknesses  4. We give the appearance we wish to give  5. We decorate       - Ernest Dichter 

Wisdom Of Crowds

What's popular on Netflix makes me doubt the concept of wisdom of crowds.