Tuesday, October 23, 2007

What I learnt from Corporate Finance

The present value of a classroom bunk is greater than the future value. Hence bunk classes as soon as possible and exhaust your holidays.

P.S : Later if you fall sick and lose a GPA of 1, then please consider yourself unlucky, as this is the risk associated with the future value calculations.

The Ten Commandments of Classroom Participation

Me and a few of my fellow classmates came up with the ten commandments. I am taking this from a fellow blogger aka vishesh.

MBA education uses levers as class participation (CP) and relative grading (RG) for effective classroom experience. Both mediums are powerfully effective when used (by students!) in the true spirit of learning, but have quite distasteful outcomes when the same students indulge in what they call RG-giri, i.e. trying to portray each other in negative light to score some brownie points in front of the instructor; and indeed, often these brownie points do translate into grades :)
Anyways, after one such session in a marketing course where the group presenting the case was massacered left, right and centre by an over-enthusiastic (Read: in the RG-giri mood) audience, yours truly too contributing with one question, we came out of the class laughing at ourselves...and then in the same lighter mood, postulated the Ten Commandments of CP.
Only if Moses was alive, he would not have complained of hearing just the Voice of the Divine.
(Some terms carry additional explanation in italics).
1) Thou shalt not CP in the last 2 minutes of a lecture; especially if the prof himself is overshooting the class timings
2) Thou shall not CP in XYZ course at all, the instructor already himself is a living CP specimen
(not mentioning the course to be, ah, politically correct)
3) Thou shall not CP if thou art Rajamundry
(an over-enthusiastic chap who CPs, I guess, without any RG intention)
4) The time between two consecutive CPs shalt atleast be 3 classes
5) Thou shalt treat the whole class if thou CP more than once in a single day
6) Thou shalt seek all CP-overdoer infidels and slay them in the name of God
7) Thou shalt NEVER EVER put in a follow-up CP
8) If thou art the last person to CP, thou get to be hooshed
(a popular physical torture over here in IIMB)
9) All case-presenters are thy brothers and sisters, thou shalt love them
10) Remember, thou shalt be CPed against the way thou CPed unto others
Credits: Vishesh, Sudhakar and yours truly

Friday, April 27, 2007

Made it into IIM B Finally!

Finally my MBA journey comes to a definite conclusion after IIM B announced its result today. Me headed to IIM B in all probability.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

I have Quit

Have Quit Oracle. Would be soon joining Great Lakes Institute of Management or IIM B (in case I get into it).

Monday, March 26, 2007

Is Dumbledore dead?

Ok, a lot of websites talk about this and let me pitch in my views on this:

1) I feel Snape is surely a good guy. No need to point out the evidence. Only a dumb idiot would miss the fact that in every book she tries to make him the bad guy and finally he turns out inculpable. Moreover, plenty of evidence in book six to suggest that he is indeed a good guy, such as "Dont call me a coward" scene, Dumbledore pleading Snape to "do the job" when he says "Snape, please"....come on, a man like Dumbledore would never plead for his life, and if he was not pleading for his life, then it was something more and if it is really something more then Snape is a good guy.

2) Secondly, JK has supposedly informed her fans that Dumbledore is defly dead (in an interview as an answer to Salman Rushdie). Here I have a new angle,

Consider this:

IF you are JKR, and you are asked :

"Is Dumbledore dead?"

You can say:

1) No. He is not dead.
--> And therefore give away a lot, and a lot of readers, though happy, would feel "what nonsense, why did she reveal the suspense"

2) No Comments.

--> In which case it become obvious without you telling....that Dumbly is not dead.

3) Yes he is dead.

--> The safest route. You have to stick on to what you have thus far said so that people shut up and stop asking more questions. Tomorrow, even if you wake him up from the dead, nobody is going to complain. And on top of it, as far as Book 6 is concerned he is dead. So he is dead. Full Stop. So JKR is not really lying anything.

Considering the three options, JKR has only used the best viable option, and I still tend to think Dumbly is not dead :)....I will give a 80:20 chance for his survival (or rather some sort of a comeback). A 100:0 chance for snape being the good guy. And if it really turns out Dumbly is dead, he sure has done a lot more (perhaps kicked out a few more horcruxes, taken care of a couple-a death eaters etc, without informing Harry, and also has arranged for a lot of other things which may unravel later) than what has been mentioned thus far.

Eagerly awaiting book 7 with Rs.1000 and for movie 5 with Rs. 100 in my hand :)

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

My IIM B interview experience

Reached B'lore in the morning of March 6. The push for a better infrastructure in the city seems to have made a leeeetle impact. Roads seemed to have become a bit better than the last time I was in B'lore.

Anyways, let me come to the point.

My interview was at 2.30. GD started with a case study. I was 5th in the group of 8 (1 guy did not turn up).

GD was a very simple topic. I started to speak and on the whole I think I did quite well. Easily among the top three performers and arguably the top performer. But I guess GD does not matter much.

Then the PI starts

2 profs took the interview. One person a very cordial smiling face. Let me call him P1. Second prof a bit of a serious type and "Cut the bullshit" look. Let me call him P2.

I go inside

P2: Let me see your certificates

P1: So Bala. Tell me about yourself. Not the usual stuff. We have read your SOP and all...but tell me something more about you as a person
Me : Usual start....then blah blah about my strengths. Told him about my nature and stuff. And then went on to hobbies....blah blah more...

P1: So you are a creative person. What have you done that makes you think you are creative...

Me: Sir, I blog. I write short stories, they have come in oracle magazine, and famous websites...blah blah.....
Also I make advertisement and posters for the Ora Vol Club and Emp. Club at oracle (wanted to take and show him the posters I had done from my file, but he said "thats ok...we believe you")
Also in my own team I have done this and I have done that blah blah blah...

P1: Hmm...so are you a deviant?
Me: <>Hmm, sir, are you asking in a positive sense or a negative sense?
P1: I dont know. You tell me.
Me: If I take it in the postive sense then yes. I am not someone normal. I have certain abilities that make me special. I am creative. blah blah..more nonsense...
P1: So , you dont follow rules and ethics?
Me: No sir, if I take "deviant" to mean someone who does not follow ethics then I am not a deviant. I follow ethics.
P1 : So , tell me 2 people from India who are creative.

Me : Thyagaraja swamigal in carnatic music is a creative genius...he has done this he has done that blah blah
P1: Is he one of the trinity?
Me: Yes sir.
P2: Ok enough. Tell me someone who is alive.

Me: Infy Narayanamoorthy

P2: Ok tell me what he did that makes you think he is creative.
Me: Outsourcing. Pre 1991 Economic reform era. He was a person who spotted opportunity where there was none...blah blah
P2: Was it just him or his team?
Me: It was also Nandan Nilekani and others in his team
P2: Who else were there?
Me : I am not sure of the names of the others. But there was a team.
P2: So is Narayanamoorthy creative or his team?
Me: The team.
P2: Ok, so tell me, is being creative being innovative?

Me: ...sir could you repeat that?

P2: If I say that I am creative, am I also innovative.
Me: Yes.
P2: So if I just sit and think about atoms and me flying amidst them , and doing arbit things, am I innovative?
Me: Sir, no. Just thinking about it is not enough. One should put his ideas into action, only then he becomes innovative.

P2: Ok, now to the GD. You were suggesting that the person use a AC Taxi, and reimburse the fair for non AC right?
Me: Yes sir.
P2: Now you are oracle sales head. Larry asks you to go to Argentina...

lots of stories. And then he gives me an ethical vs. unethical drama...

Me: I chose to stick on to ethics at the cost of losing my money.

P2: So you will lose so much money from your pocket?
Me: Given all the conditions I would.
P2: Ok, then next larry asks you to repeat that excercise.....
Me: Oops. That puts me in a tricky situation indeed.

.....they decided to move on...

P1: Who are Oracle's competitors and what is oracles most serious threat today....
Me: I wanted to take the ERP story....started off with acquisitions, SAP .....
P2 cut me
P2: Is ERP oracle's primary business?
Me: No sir it is Databases.
P2: Then tell me about the competitors of Oracle DB
Me: Sir they are, IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, Sybase, Teradata, MySQL

P2: Tell me about MySQL
Me: Sir it is a freeware
P2: Freeware?
Me: It is an open source Software
P2: Is open source same as freeware.
Me: No sir. Open source is not same as freeware. But My SQL is a open source available for free download on the internet (I think I went wrong here...not sure if it is a free download)

P2: Compare My SQL and Oracle
Me: Gen fundas....basically more robust...blah blah
P2: Yahoo.com uses MySQL. Why?
Me: some more fundas....Gave some large customers who use oracle

P2 was not satisfied and he said...
P2: Dont tell me why Oracle is good. Tell me how yahoo manages with MySQL
Me: Some fundas...such as Yahoo may have a lot of servers to handle the number of requests...

P2 went on to the next qn.

P2: So why MBA
Me: The usual fundas.
P2: Hey come on, why not a neurosurgeon. You can be a neuro surgeon and have all the things you just said.
Me: Sir, not in my interest....blah blah...
P2: Why here?
Me: Esteemed faculty, peer group...student exchange blah blah...
P2: Boss. You are not coming here to look at our old faces are you? There is something in you that motivates you to come here. What is that.
Me: Down the lane I want to be a business leader in the IT Space and I think IIM B is the right platform to get there.
P2: That is what I wanted to know. That will be all. Thanks for your time.

Me walked out...not knowing how it went...

Guess I will know soon....

Keeping fingers crossed for now...


Sunday, February 25, 2007

YSR in Devil's Advocate

Caught this episode in CNN IBN late night a few days ago. Boy what a hilarious entertainment it turned out for me :)....

I really appreciate Karan Thapar's Guts...he does have it in him to ask such questions to top politicians.

The topic initially starts off with Karan Thapar asking our YSR abour 310 acres of land in his name and ehre is what YSR had to say about it....

Karan Thapar:It’s not just facts that you were ignorant of? As a four time or five time MLA in Andhra Pradesh you have been chairman of the Constituency Assignment Committee and you were ignorant of the fact that you yourself owned an assigned land.

YS Rajashekar Reddy: That’s right I’m telling you. The fact was never brought to my notice. As and when it was brought to my notice I gave it to the government, I surrendered it to the government.


Oh my god! Too many jokes in my mind!! I am cracking up...can't control myself!!! I am already in the floor laughing as I type this....

Ok , so here goes my excuse for not filing Income Tax Returns "Hi Indian Government. I donot know that I should pay taxes. Nobody told it to me. As soon as someone brings it to my notice I would pay my taxes. Till then, so long and thanks for all the fish"



Karan Thapar: I will tell you one of the thing wrong with this 180 acres. You have surrounded it with a compound wall or a compound fence. That compound wall denies access to the public to this land, which is illegal.

YS Rajashekar Reddy: The compound wall is there because there has to be fence, otherwise there are lot of forest animals that come.


Ohohohoh!!! I just can't control it...

S.Ve. Sekhar could not have provided a better entertainment.

"There are a lot of forest animals that come in the land. They pee there. They dirty it up. How can I allow forest animal to pee in the land that belongs to the public. Hence I put compound wall. In fact, I will put compound wall everywhere around all the forests so that those animals dont come inside the cities and dirty the roads. Bad Forest animals. Bad Bad forest animals."



Karan Thapar: The Opposition has said in fact, for land ceiling purposes you have claimed that the land at Kundur was non-agricultural. Yet, for income tax purposes you have claimed that the income earned at Kundur is agricultural. How can you have it both ways?

YS Rajashekar Reddy: Well at that point of time, I don’t know whatever has been filed in income tax.

Karan Thapar: You mean once again you are ignorant of what you are filing yourself in the income tax.

YS Rajashekar Reddy: No, its only about this particular land. I own so many lands in so many places.

Karan Thapar: That means you are so rich and you have land in so many places that you don’t know what you are talking about.

YS Rajashekar Reddy: Yes, ultimately whatever has been filed in the income tax is there.

Let the opposition go to court because I had the cake and ate it too.

I was reminded of a Tamil movie "Mudhalvan" which was remade into "Nayak" in Hindi. As I saw KT's interview I was waiting for the moment when the CM would say "Do you know how difficult it is to be a CM. Why dont you be a CM For one day. Just one day. You be a CM and then you will not talk like this"....

But sadly..that never happened...I guess movies will only be movies...


Hmm...Jokes apart...I read the other day in one of the Indian Economy Blogs (not exactly the same words), that "politicians spend their first two years earning back what they have spent in their elections. The next three years they have to spend improving their vote bank, making more connections, and increasing their coffers to face the next election.Hence it is wrong to actually say that Politicians are Corrupt. Saying that a politician is corrupt is like saying the Grass is Green. We need to see how best we can extract good things from them."

It was nice to read it, but it makes me think. Is a politican necessary for the world. Is a politician a necessary evil. Can the world be rid of politics? Is such a world possible? Hmm...have to think...I dont think that such a world is impossible....

Life Goes On...

She was very close to salvation. God only wanted her to control two senses to get there. She did not have the senses of vision,hearing and speech right from birth.

When her parents were asked what they felt about their child all they said was,

"She is God's Merit Certificate of Goodness to us. God was thinking which couple would get this very special kid of his. As he looked around, he felt that we were the most loving and caring couple in this world, and hence he gave her to us. We shall try to live up to his expectations."

Monday, February 19, 2007

All are equal in the eyes of the Government

Hence, they have made sure that it takes as much time to book a railway ticket from here as it takes to actually go to a counter and buy one.

It took me close to 1 hour to book a ticket in that stupid website. I know there must be a lot of traffic, but how hard is it to increase a couple of more servers to handle it. Secondly, has anyone who booked the tickets online, had their money debitted from the account, but did not have a ticket delivered? IT has happened to me a lot of times. However, they do give you back your money once they have realized their mistake (about 3-4 days later). Meantime my money can be invested in the share market in some IPOs (kidding :) ). Also, what about the surcharge my bank levied on the transaction that never happened? Where do i report that loss.

I think I have to report it to someone in Railways...but as usual..the trouble is I donot know whom to report this to. Let me see...

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Two sides of the same coin

The Head of it

It was a daylight robbery. Police were all around Mr.Sharma's house in search of clues. Fingers were pointed at Ramayya their servant. Ramayya knew he had no role in the burglary. The police just needed a nod from Mr.Sharma to round Ramayya up.

"Did you do it Ramu?", asked Mr.Sharma
"No sir. I did not. I had nothing to do with this.", replied Ramayya, tears welling up in his eyes.

A few days ago Ramayya had asked Mrs.Sharma an advance for his daughters marriage. Mrs. Sharma had refused. Mr.Sharma put one and one together and gave the go ahead to the police.

Ramayya languished in the gaol for three months before the real culprit was discovered. There was another burglary that happened in Mr.Sharma's house six months later. This time the police never nabbed the culprit. It was Ramayya.

The Tail of it

It was a daylight robbery. Police were all around Mr.Verma's house in search of clues. Fingers were pointed at Krishnayya their servant. Krishnayya's heart was pounding fast. The police just needed a nod from Mr.Verma to round Krishnayya up.

"He did not do it", affirmed Mr.Verma to the police
"Sir, are you sure? Your wife tells that he had asked an advance for his daughters marriage. All evidence points to him.", asked the Inspector.
"I am sure", was the response.

Krishnayya's daughters wedding took place three months later. Six months later Mr.Verma opened his safe and found the burgled money replaced. Someone had surrendered himself to the police for the crime. It was Krishnayya.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Home and the World - Book Review

After reading Gora, "Ghare Bhaire" was my next choice (Ghare - Home, that which belongs to home, Bhaire - That which is from outside, or external). I read the treanslation (by Surendranath Tagore) of Ghare Bhaire (Rabindranath Tagore).

Once again Tagore has proven his brilliance. The words he uses in his sentences are like pearls in a necklace. The way he expresses himself is simply exquisite.

You have a point of view (POV). You want to put it through. How do you do it?

Ask Tagore.

He creates characters out of all possible POVs and makes them part of his drama. They then unfold , making you think it is a story. In the end you find Tagore has expressed almost all the POVs in a subject. Such was how I felt after I read this book.

Spoiler - Dont read further if you plan to read the book.

This is the first time I am reading a novel, that tells the story from three different angles. i.e, the book unfolds as "Bimala's Story", "Sandip's Story" and "Nikhil's story". I saw a tamil movie which was also of the same theme (i.e narrating from different POVs, i.e Virumaandi).

Quite a nice concept really. Instead of being a third person who narrates the story, or the hero who tells his journey, this is one more way to develop a novel. I really loved the triumph of mankind over blind patriotism. The love for a fellow human being winning over the love for one's caste, rigid values etc. (as Nikhil's master has shown). And as usual, Tagore's women are strong characters and rich in values.

On the whole a good read. I would rate this at the same level as Gora. I am now latching on to A History of the World in 10.5 chapters by Julian Barnes (suggested by one friend of mine).


Tuesday, January 23, 2007

History of Religions

Found this nice website:


However, there is a slight misgiving I have about the above website. It shows Hinduism as the name of the religion as it is today. However, the word "Hindu" is a coined word (and it was coined by the Britishers for all it takes :) just a few hundred years ago).

Before this word was in place, there were Shaivites, Shanmugaites, Vaishnavites, Kali Worshippers etc throughout India. To unite them all under one head, the Britishers used the word "Hindu".

I would call the religion as the "Vedic" religion, or rather the Vedic Way of Life. The Vedas together with the Upanishads, and the other "Angas" (parts) such as Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana, Mahabharata etc. make up the core of the religion people of the Indus Valley (India).

One more flaw I see with the above map is that it mentions "Hinduism" to have started at around 3000BC. But in the Mahabharata itself there is mention of the Vedic Lore, which clearly implies that it predates the 3000 BC period mentioned. Also, Ramayana which is a part of the "Itihasa" (history), studied as part of Vedic education, predates Mahabharata. There is mention of the 4 vedas in the Ramayana. Vedas themselves mention that there is no specific "Starting" point for them.

Also, there is very little mention of Nature Worshippers, Aboriginal religions, and about other religions practiced in other areas of the world (it cannot be possible that the other parts of the world were not doing much about religion all that time :) ). Maybe, the reason why it was left out was because,that information is not available or that those religions are today non-existent.

Anyways, that apart it is quite interesting to see the above URL.


Wednesday, January 17, 2007


The news channels seem to be full of the Shilpa Shetty Racism issue. I read this article and I thought of blogging about it as well. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/6265127.stm

The trio also complained that Shilpa had touched other housemates' food with her hands.
Danielle said: "You don't know where those hands have been."

After so many thousands of years of civilisation, are we truly educated? Seeing the remarks that have been made against the actress I am full of sympathy for her.

We saw what happened in France a few months ago. The movie "Crash" was well directed and brought out a lot of important facts.

Looks like Racism is there to stay.

The more one is educated and the more one is wealthy, the lesser he cares about all else. Especially about fellow humans. Arrogance in one's race and lack of confidence on the part of the oppressed race, is the root cause for Racism.

But the oppressors do have a reason to be arrogant about.

Do we Indians not foolishly try to imitate the west in all we do?
Do we Indians not look upto them?
Did Vivekananda gain praise because he preached in Kanyakumari or in Los Angeles?
Did the Bhagavad Gita get notice because of us or because Einstein had some good things to say about it?
Did the Vedas Gain prominence because of Max Muller or because of Ved Vyasa?

I request all Indians to just think about this. Let us stop looking up toward the westerners for each and everything in our life and take pride in our own culture and tradition.

Confidence in oneself will automatically eradicate Racism. If all races are very self confident, there is no question of Racism.

I request Shilpa to stay calm in this situation and act like a matured Indian. We Indians are too matured to react to this kind of silly childish remarks. Please know that in this issue you have my fullest support.