Thursday, May 29, 2008

Bangalore airport 2.0

last weekend was an opportunity to ring out the old and ring in the new.
i was returning from chennai on friday and was supposed to land at the new airport - on day 1 of its operations.
but, due to elections in other parts of karnataka, the opening was delayed by a day.
so, mine was among the last flights that landed at the old airport.

I had many complaints about the old airport - in terms of passenger convenience, once you get into the airport.
but no complaints - in fact all admiration for the little book stall - sankars - that i used to partonise regularly.
small shop, but a very good collection of books- and an ever ready and informed person at the cash register, always ready to help.
i bought a book - other than the usual magazines etc - when the person told me that they do not have space at the new airport.
the ride back home took much longe rthan usual - close to an hour and a half - maybe a ploy by the new airport to get people used to long commutes..

on sunday, had an opportunity to go to the new airport to receive my niece.
decided to try the airport shuttle service, rather than drive.
the ride to the airport was by a volvo bus - that took an hour and 20 minutes in the afternoon.
being a new landmark, one could see many people picnicing there!

it was spacious in terms of parking spaces, the foyer, the arrival area etc.
but overall, it gave an impression of an international standard small time airport..
from the number of people i could see - it will soon be crowded.
the airport is still under construction and getting stable in terms of services and facilities.
maybe that is airport 2.0 - like web2.0 - constantly evolving and ever in beta.
this is reinforced by the 'mechanical' problems with the starircase / aerobridge that made passengers wait a couple of hours inside the aircraft, bagge belts that took more than 40 minutes to deliver baggages and even the parking gate, that would not let anyone out of the parking lot for more than a couple of hours.

the return trip was not by volvo - as they are only once an hour and it would have been a long wait.
the driver was new to the route, and took a wrong turn - and nearly got lost.
the only other passenger - apart from us - had to navigate. that and the traffic, made the return trip more than an two hours and fifteen minutes.

as i talk to persons who have been using the new airport in the last few days, the initial impression seems to be positive.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Life: scripted by the Inbox

as i write this blog, i am installing an add-in called xobni to outlook.

one of the features i liked about it is the analytics that it is expected to have about emails flowing into the inbox.. see sample from the weekend traffic. the weekday traffic is much more..

i am hoping that it will give me ideas to tame my inbox that is growing out of control.

at one time, the main problem was spam.
nowadays, it is being in a CC for a 'reply all' thread seems to be a major contributor.

if i stay away from my inbox - or am not connected for a few hours, i can be sure of another few dozens mails flowing in.

I have now come to classify my mails into three categories.

the first are the ones that i am expecting - either information, updates or actions that i need.
the second are some subscriptions [newsletters etc] that i would like to have.
the third category - that is presently about 60% of my mailbox load - are things that i really do not need, but cannot delete without reading - as there could be some implied contribution from me.

I have always wanted to infer more on the patterns of mails and the persons from whom i receive mails.

just when i was getting convinced that the sole purpose of my life was to respond to emails, i feel that this kind of a tool would give me better control on my life outside the inbox!

Sunday, May 11, 2008


it is just coincidence that my earlier post was also titled two alphabets.
this XY is more about the GenX and GenY, inspired by a recent book i read - retire retirement.
you will find more details on my shelfari bookshelf.
the award winning author, tamara erickson - is also an interesting story teller.
in this book, she provides encouragement to the near retirees of GenX and provides many tips to extend careers after formal retirement ages.
she defines Boomers as those who were born between 65 and 80; the Gen Y was born between is 85 to 2000
Those pre genX are classified as traditionalists.
in terms of their behavior, they hold the following approaches to life:
Traditionalists: I want to join the world and benefit accordingly
Boomers: I want to hel change the world. But I must also compete to win
genX: I can't depend on institutions - I must keep my options open
genY: I must live life now - and work toward long term shared goals
one tip that she provides for the Boomers - who are the main target audience is to : Explore, experiment, strengthen your edge

she also has a blog @
you might find it interesting if you want to know more on this subject.

Saturday, May 3, 2008


that is not his real name.
i have known him for about 4 years now.
his role was 'office boy' - though he has children in the school going age. his main responsibilities were to keep the office clean and take care of any urgent requirements related to admin.
his salary was hardly enough to make ends meet, but his ambitions to provide a good education for his children were very serious.
a couple of years ago, when he coould no longer have free lunch in the office, it hit him hard.
when he approached me for help, i tired to refer his name to a few of my contacts.
lack of formal secondary schooling was a big challenge.
i suggested that learn driving and get a driver's license. that would have got him a significant increase in the monthly income.
to be fair to him, he did try. but, somehow could not get sufficient confidence to drive.
it was fortunate for him to get a break in a slightly different role - a role that made him responsible to get signatures on cheques.
the complication was that no two signatories on cheques would be available in the same building - and even in different locations, but not at the same time.
he had to now not only keep track of the cheques to be signed, but also the movement of the signatories.
i do not know how he does that, but would sense a signatory's presence in the office and bring the cheques for signature.
he would also have sorted the cheques based on importance and urgency - saying things like : this has to go to the bank in the next 30 minutes, so please sign these right away and the others can wait.
or, warn in advance about a big backlog or a hundred cheques to be signed that day, positively, as there were either vendors waiting for payment or ex-employees waiting for settlement or employees waiting for their claims to be processed etc..
i like the way he takes complete ownership of his job. and doing it with a cheerful smile always.