as written by a Class – X schoolboy, with all the original spellings.

This guy is a genius!!!
The original inhabitants of ancient India were called Adidases, who lived in
two cities called Hariappa and Mujhe-na-Darao . These cities had the best
drain system in the world and so there was no brain drain from them. Ancient
India was full of myths, which have been handed down from son to father. A
myth is a female moth. A collection of myths is called mythology, which
means stories with female caricatures. One myth says that people in olden
times worshipped monkeys because they were our incestors.

In olden times there were two big families in India. One was called the
Pandava and the other was called the Karova. They fought amongst themselves
in a battle called Mahabharat, after which India came to be known as Mera
Bharat Mahan.

In midevil times India was ruled by the Slave Dienasty. So named because
they all died a nasty death. Then came the Tughlaqs who shifted their
capital from Delhi because of its pollution.

They were followed by the Mowglis. The greatest Mowgli was Akbar because he
extinguished himself on the battlefield of Panipat which is in Hurryana. But
his son Jehangir was peace loving; he married one Hindu wife and kept 300

Then came Shahajahan who had 14 sons. Family planning had not been invented
at that time. He also built the Taj Mahal hotel for his wife who now sleeps
there. The king sent all his sons away to distant parts of India because
they started quarrelling.

Dara Seiko was sent to UP, Shaikh Bhakhtiyar was sent to J & K, while
Orangezip came to Bombay to fight Shivaji. However, after that they changed
its name to Mumbai because Shivaji’s sena did not like it. They also do not
like New Delhi, so they are calling it Door Darshan.

After the Mowglis came Vasco the Gama. He was an exploder who was
circumcising India with a 100 foot clipper.

Then came the British. They brought with them many inventions such as
cricket, tramtarts and steamed railways.

They were followed by the French who brought in French fries, pizzazz and
laundry. But Robert Clive drove them out when he deafened Duplex who was out
membered since the British had the queen on their side. Eventually, the
British came to overrule India because there was too much diversity in our
unity. The British overruled India for a long period. They were great
expotents and impotents. They started expoting salt from India and impoting

This was not liked by Mahatma Gandhi who wanted to produce his own salt.
This was called the swedish moment. During this moment, many people burnt
their lion cloths in the street and refused to wear anything else. The
British became very angry at this and stopped the production of Indian

In 1920, Mahatma Gandhi was married to one wife. Soon after he became the
father of the nation. In 1942 he started the Quiet India moment, so named
because the British were quietly lootaoing our country.

In 1947, India became free and its people became freely loving. This
increased our population. Its government became a limited mockery, which
means people are allowed to take the law in their own hands with the help of
the police. Our constipation is the best in the world because it says that
no man can be hanged twice for the same crime. It also says you cannot be
put in prison if you have not paid your taxis. Another important thing about
our constipation is that it can be changed. This is not possible with the
British constipation because it is not written on paper.

The Indian Parlemint consists of two houses which are called lower and
higher. This is because one Mr Honest Abe said that two houses divided
against itself cannot withstand.

So Pandit Nehru asked the British for freedom at midnight since the British
were afraid of the dark . At midnight, on August 15, there was a tryst in
Parlemint in which many participated by wearing khaki and hosting the flag.

Recently in India, there have been a large number of scams and a plaque. It
can be dangerous because many people died of plaque in Surat. Scams are all
over India.
One of these was in Bihar where holy cows were not given anything to eat by
their elected leader. The other scam was in Bofor which is a small town in
Switzerland. In this, a lot of Indian money was given to buy a gun which can
shoot a coot.

Presently India has a coalishun government made up of many parties, left,
right and centre. It has started to library the economy. This means that
there is now no need for a licence as the economy will be driven by itself.
India is also trying to become an Asian tiger because its own tigers are
being poached. Another important event this year was the Shark meeting at
Malas Dive. At this place, shark leaders agreed to share their poverty,
pollution and population.”

How we can keep ourselves safe in cyberspace

Cyberspace is increasingly a war zone. If it’s not a criminally minded hacker (there’s good ones out there too) trying to bring down your website or email server, there’ll be a spammer blasting tons of crap at you through common email service providers. There are some tools that can help us figure out the shades of gray into more discrete forms – I’m not going to cover all of them, just the ones I use most often.

Have you ever travelled or organized an event? Do you just jump right into the middle of the event/trip or do you plan for it, and ensure you’re covered for most risks? I’d wager you do the latter; so why is it that using the internet and working over the net are not considered with equal fore-thought and planning? After all the risks on the internet are usually minor, but the more major risks of identity theft and credit card fraud can be far worse than the worst car breakdown or wardrobe malfunction. Fortunately there are simple ways to keep a check on internet related risks, and I’ve covered 3 of the most common ones here.

1. Firewalls: There are a lot of there out there now; you get free software firewalls and then there’s Windows Firewall (which is pretty good too) – and of course hardware/external security appliances (like the excellent Sonicwall appliances I’ve worked with).

If you’ve noticed your internet suddenly slow down when you’re in office, and it stays slow for ~2-3 hours specially around lunchtime, chances are someone could be downloading stuff. When I say “stuff” – I mean videos, games – or stuff that’s not directly connected with office work. One of the most common methods to download these days is by the use of torrents, or via web services like rapidshare (Note: there are many legal uses for these services – if you do catch someone using these to download illegal stuff you should fire them first and then use the firewall :-)). However if just two people start large downloads, it’s likely to block off your internet to the point nobody else in the office can use it.

That’s where the firewall comes in. Many firewalls have what’s called a “QoS” – Quality of Service – that can allow you to throttle the rate at which a certain service runs. So while you may want official VOIP calls to run at full speed, large downloads and torrents could be throttled to use a 5% or 10% of the bandwidth.

Further, firewalls are able to detect the type of traffic flowing through the network, and can give you a pretty good idea of whether it’s someone trying to gain access to something they shouldn’t, or if someone’s watching a movie online, or downloading music or suchlike – and based on what you see you can block or throttle the activity. It’s also possible for the external appliance firewalls to detect spam sources and they can help block it and reduce the load on your email servers.

2. Spam filters: If you’re using Gmail, you probably could go directly to #3 – however if you’ve got a 3rd party mail server or manage your own email services, read on.

Spam is identified in 2 ways – blacklists and the email contents. Firewalls will help you with the blacklists aspect, but what about the contents of the email? The best way to check this automatically, using a powerful learning algorithm, is SpamAssassin. Most email servers have plugins for SpamAssassin and you can then configure the settings to filter out the kind of spam you see the most. Voila! Your private mailbox is as clean as, or cleaner than your Gmail account.

Client-side spam removal tools: If you use Outlook, you should probably look through client-side spam removal tools as well. These would double-check your mailbox and eliminate the residuals of any spam attack that made it through your filters.

3. Virus/Malware protection: In my book this is either AVG (the free edition) or Windows Defender. I’m starting to prefer Windows Defender over all of the others because of the ease of use and accuracy of detection. Also the fact that it doesn’t slow down my system as much as the Norton’s or Symantec products do means I can continue my work unimpeded.

Often while browsing websites or downloading useful documents/tools for our work, we may come across virus infected files that we just don’t want on our system. These anti-virus measures ensure that your system remains safe from infection.

Ideally you should also scan your system once a week to ensure you don’t have any unwelcome “friends” occupying space on your hard drive.

Important: Remember to always update your anti-virus/anti-malware and other software on your PC. If you have limited internet bandwidth and need to do this later – do it later but as much as possible do NOT delay! You never know when you’re the next target.

What happens if we don’t do this (points 1, 2, 3 and the ‘important’ note above)? The answer is not as simple as it looks. If there’s a virus/malware on your PC, chances are the malware is using your PC to attack others on the same network, or even others around the world via the internet. If there’s spam in your email service that looks appealing/genuine, you may end up on a phishing site and victim to an online fraud.

Vigilance is the key to ensure this doesn’t happen – however it’s not practical for a human to be vigilant 24/7 – which is where these tools come into play. The sooner you adopt and use tools that keep you, your identity and your computer safe, the better set you are to explore the world of the internet, with little or no risk.

Be safe!

Spamhaus attack a good thing? Or is this World War III

How can I minimize the impact of this ongoing Cyber war – WW 3 – on my services and website? It’s up here.

The world has been on the brink of WW 3 for a long time now – ever since the 1990s there’s been attacks and bombings and everything – and in the back of their mind everyone knows that sooner or later something big is going to break out.

In the 2000s specially after the movie “The Matrix” – cyber warfare has been considered a very real and very possible threat. In this latest Spamhaus vs Spammers match, who will emerge the winner?

If the Spammers end up victorious – which would mean Spamhaus incurs major losses and is forced to shut shop – does that mean we’ll suddenly get 500x the usual amount of spam?

If Spamhaus ends up victorious – which would mean their resources and support far outweigh the Spammers’ capabilities – will the spam cease and Spamhaus become redundant?

Who wins and who loses?

Is this a World War? Definitely yes – all we need to do now is see the outcome.

Ref: http://www.theage.com.au/it-pro/security-it/spam-dispute-becomes-largest-cyber-attack-in-history-of-the-internet-20130327-2gtw1.html

Ref: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/28/technology/attacks-on-spamhaus-used-internet-against-itself.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

Further, PCH’s Bill Woodcock has put up this really brilliant explanation of the DDoS attack that happened on Spamhaus: http://youtu.be/Vlhu8_Aa7J8

Multiple desktops on the same Windows PC

I was very interested to find out that Sysinternals is still operational, and has this very interesting tool that allows multi-desktop capabilities on Windows XP, Win 7 and the latest Windows 8 (I’m using it on Win 8 Pro myself)

While this has none of the frills of the other virtual desktop software, this is a “real” desktop that’s being run – separate explorer.exe on each one, and each application in it’s own “natural” environment.

Very impressive! Though given Microsoft owns Sysinternals I do wonder why they couldn’t bring this out as an official ‘product’ and encourage people to use it.

Anyways if you’re interested, it can be downloaded at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/cc817881.aspx

CIO Excellence’s evaluation of me – cool!

So over the past week I’d requested an evaluation by CIO Excellence, and here’s the result!! I’m planning to enroll for their CIE certification (I’ll probably start with one module – the costs are quite prohibitive – so will need to do this over time)

Our Senior Analyst has reviewed your answers and provides the following evaluation.

Based on our observations and our experiences in teaching CIOs how to be more effective strategic value creators over the last decade, we conclude the following:

1. You seem to have the business value creation perspectives of a CIO in a very competitive multi-billion dollar corporation.

2. You seem to recognize your need to improve your acumen and influence as a business strategy leader in the corporation. This is a very good sign.

3. It is also a good sign that you are very interested in improving a well-defined process for using IT resources to increase your company’s profits and grow your company’s customer base, although you already have one.

4. The fact that you are only getting occasional participation by most people who should be in your IT Governance meetings is an indication that the other Senior Corporate Leadership questions your relevance to the marketing, sales, and finance aspects of your business, but the fact that you are very interested in learning how to improve their participation is a good sign that you have the right attitude to improve in this area.

5. You seem to recognize the need to improve your leadership skills and have reported a strong desire to do so.

Next move => Large org (5~7 years).

Next move after that => Fortune 500.

Yes people, I’m definitely a Fortune 500 CIO in the year 2020. See you there.

Employer Screening – a professional brand screening a corporate brand

No I’m not talking about how employers can screen you – I’m talking about the other angle.

So you’re applying for job and are terrified of the fact that you’re going to be screened then interviewed by a person who probably knows more about your work history than you can remember. Big deal!

Most people are under the impression that an ‘interview’ and ‘screening’ are a one way thing – that only Employers get to screen their future employees for jobs that are available. You have no idea how inaccurate this is! Everything as far as your career is concerned runs both ways.

You work with a company and help it earn more money – you get paid more
You bad mouth your company – recruiters see you as a bad choice and your options decrease
You transform your company into a great place to work, learn and earn – your job options suddenly go through the roof!

So everything runs both ways!! You do some good you get it right back, and so goes the ‘evil’. As the old saying goes… but I don’t need to repeat that.


How do you “interview” a “company”?? Seriously if I invite a candidate in for an interview I know what to see, what to ask – and who to ask it to! Here’s my guidelines on how to “interview” the “company” you’re interviewing with:

1. See the company: Everything about how an organization’s office looks will tell you about how sound and healthy the company is. If it’s neat and clean; or poorly maintained, located in a crowded bustling suburb or a fancy downtown tower or maybe even a dilapidated building in the middle of nowhere – the place speaks volumes about what you’re signing up for!

2. What to ask: A great office need not be a great workplace and vice versa – what we want is a great workplace – so keeping that in mind there should be focus, positivity and happiness when you mention “office”. You may or may not find an appropriate question on these lines to ask your interviewer – so that’s clearly not the best source for this information.

3. Ask the company: Who better to answer the questions than your interviewer, right?

WRONG! There are people all around you – receptionists, office boys, maybe even janitors or delivery men – the people we foolishly think may be ‘low class’  can actually give us deep insight into the workings, ethics and future of the company.

Its simple: you walk into an office and find the receptionist lost and confused looking, the office boy annoyed and grumpy, and delivery men looking frustrated waiting at the door – even worse all three, you want to keep an eye open for more signs of negativity.

As Gandhi said – if you want to truly know a person’s heart, you can find that out from the way he treats his juniors – even more from the way he treats his servant.


Every employee’s background is looked into, and usually checked quite thoroughly for fraud or signs of poor work history. Depending on the post you’re applying for and the company you’re applying to, most stuff about you would be analyzed by either a professional investigator or as we see in India (ok not everyone does it – but some do) a police verification report.

Why then should a company’s history be a secret revealed only during induction? Naturally you expect to know what you’re getting yourself into, so get a move on and find out all you can! For this we need to revisit the social studies – History and Geography.

1. History of the company: When was it formed? By whom? Who of the original founders left or was ousted? How much did they earn in the first few years and when did they go public? Were they growing slower or faster or around the same pace? Did their first few CEOs or C-level employees quit within a year or is the current CEO the one who started the company?

This will tell you so much!! Whether the company was formed by people who had a long term strategy or whether it was a ‘get-rich-and-exit’ scheme for them, whether the environment was progressive or repressive – even about if they are as serious TODAY with their growth as they were back then. You can then decide if this is important to you, and if you will be able to make an impact here.

2. Geography of the company: Where did they start? Did they shift headquarters more than one a year? Are they still in the same neighbourhood thet started in? Have they moved across countries (eg. started in the US and then over time transferred operations entirely to India or vice-versa)? Did their current C-level people move across the country, or even more impressive across countries to join them? Are their most popular clients recognized in the same country or are their clients MNCs?

This again tells you how much you can grow! If the company has offices in San Francisco, Chicago, Boston and Dallas in the US, Walldorf in Germany, Dubai in the Middle East and India and Singapore in Asia – you can be rest assured there’s a lot to do and a lot to grow!

If the company started in India and launched their IPO just a few years back – but nearly tripled (or even more) their balance sheet numbers since then, then that’s really something – even more so if they were able to scale 10x. If they’ve bought multiple companies in countries with a higher currency value that’s a sign of sure greatness!

Every company has something to see, something to learn from and something that can help you grow. I’ve moved from IT Consultancy to Health care, Tourism to Non-profit and the one thing that’s remained in common – is ME. When I’ve applied for a job I’ve always walked into the interview knowing as much as I can about the company, so there’s nothing left to ask the interviewer. In fact they’re pleasantly surprised that I’ve researched so much about them – sometimes even slightly shocked – but never find me unprepared. After all when the linen was out of the closet I still found it interesting enough to go for the interview; and then they understand what I’m all about.

And as long as you’re focused on the future of your company (the one you’re working for; not the castle of dreams you may/may not create after you retire) – you will always grow, learn, innovate and CREATE!

Now go get that job, and make us all proud!

This CIO’s Future

Ref: http://subbuiyer.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/whose-problem-is-it-anyway/

What is your take on how this story is going to go? Please participate in writing in your feedback. Perhaps your views will help in shaping clarity for our protagonist CIO and / or his organization.

Simple answer: He transforms the sin into a blessing, divides the ocean and leads the flock to IT-Utopia.


  • The CIO gets in a technology ‘agent’ – be it internal or external – to form a crisp, thin ‘control’ layer between the external application and the internal application
  • The control layer is created to allow greater permeability and visibility into both the homegrown user-interface frontend and the application, and requirements not satisfied by the current application vendor can be easily ‘plugged’ in using other vendors
  • Meantime, the CIO removes bloatware (that exists in most organizations; if you don’t find it its likely you dont know what you’re looking for), which streamlines and trims the bulk of the ‘technology fat’ that would normally slow down tech operations at any level. This could be actual software or could simply be a process that has outlived its usefulness.
  • At the same time the CIO moves focus to the new information strategy and begins piecing together a 3 part action plan, while ensuring essential resources are available to the organization as the key pre-growth plans are pushed (maybe advertising campaigns that need extensive design and content development capacity, or bulk accounting processes that want to identify major expenses on marketing activity as Marketing attempts to identify key expansion points – could be many things)
  • Part 1 – Keeping in line with the strategy identifies the most critical pain points and generates a localized strategy to deal with each pain point
  • Part 2 – Identifies potential areas that could become pain points during the next growth phase and creates a best case & worst case treatment plan (worst case would apply if the growth starts before the cure has been applied)
  • Part 3 – Notes important support points that would need to be strengthened to allow smooth and effective growth (a great example would be the call centre in a radio taxi service)
  • Then comes the critical implementation phase – Parts 1, 2 and 3 are executed around the same time. By this time (6~8 months from the time this process was actioned) the bloatware removal has resulted in some minor improvements, and the technology ‘agent’ assigned with making the control layer has achieved the required element of success (so those points need even less attention)
  • As the implementation of Strategy Part 1 begins, a lot more ‘low-hanging fruit’ solutions would become visible and should be dealt with then and there (within reason; if it’s a particularly large ‘fruit’ it would be dealt with on a case-to-case basis)
  • Further to treat Part 2 & 3 (assuming major growth phase has not started yet) a support team is created and trained to deal with the expected, with clear escalation paths defined for the unexpected. Given there is a new system in place critical testing and pre-deployment preparations are done well in advance of the expected growth ‘wave’.

Further as the growth wave comes in

  • Some fixes applied in strategy Part 1 may break, and some known points of Part 2 end up in worst case – the support team would handle most of these issues within ~15-20% of them becoming important enough to escalate [i.e. they act as a filter]
  • Since the key support points have been dealt with in Part 3 (and there’s a support team to handle overages) there would possibly be some teething problems given the new software, which the original technology agent would offer support for.

End of the day, the growth expected comes though, the CIO isn’t ‘drowned’, and the system is brought up to a point where it’s now upgradable and to some extent scalable (in that it would handle the initial growth phase and scale ~2.5-3x without trouble).

Possibly in the meantime (specially needed if 10x and higher scaling needed) plans would be made to replace the problematic software vendor, and if need be even the user front-end – which would be made significantly easier with the modular ‘control’ layer now in place.

Re: Who’s Problem IS “IT” Anyway?


Thought provoking post by Mr Subbu Iyer – most CIOs think they’re supposed to simply manage IT, or only a bit of strategy, or drive one strong line of business (say websites either as development or as a platform like an ecommerce org), or something very ‘niche’ like that…

How unfortunate! They are the ones that truly hold the reigns of power within an organization and can give tremendous, effective direction and guidance to it’s future.

The CEO is almost always busy with growing the external capabilities/extent aspect of the organization. There may be other aspects to this – like laying a business directive, overseeing organizational health/culture, identifying the key areas of business and communicating that clearly to the organization, and so on – I wouldnt know – but simply put they’re not hands on with the information flow.

The COO is tasked with maintaining productivity and ensuring operational work gets done.

The CTO builds the technology base for the organization to operate from, and may also do the CIO’s job in a smaller organization.

The CIO needs to I = innovate, I = invent, I = INFORMATION!! This is the key to everything happening within the organization! Information and the flow of information are what gives a company the ability to be dynamic, proactive, know it’s place in the world and know where it can grow in that space. Without this key information an organization is paralyzed.

I was just discussing with someone about it this morning today – as a CIO, we need to know the organization inside-out, and just as a CEO (my take: E=external) focuses on the outside of the organization, the other C-level executives are tasked with looking ‘inwards’. Most importantly the CIO (my take: I=internal).

As the owner and key stakeholder of all information flow and technology linked to that information, the best person to transform and evolve the processes in an organization is the CIO!

Again in various organizations other positions may not exist – for example a CIO may be expected to fulfill the function of an IT director as well, or in a smaller organization it may just be a CTO (no CIO present). Unless an innovative and evolutionary insight is taken I fear most people in this CIO/CTO ambiguity may simply end up as IT managers, that cannot lead their organization anywhere.

Wine making – finishing

We learned how to make wine at http://cbd.vcio.in/2013/02/02/wine-making-home-the-way-i-do-it/ – now let’s learn how to finish it!!

How to finish your wine

Ok we all know how to finish it by drinking it off; but I’m talking about a different kind of finishing here 🙂

Basically if you’ve tasted grape juice, you know how ‘rough’ it tastes – often there is a lot more fibre in it than we’d want, and wine would taste similar if it’s not ‘smoothed’. Also the yeast would add in a slight bread-y flavour which tastes most unacceptable.

There are a few natural processes that occur that help the finishing.

First is the settling phase, where the yeast has finished processing as much of the sugar as it can, and dies off – it then settles to the bottom of the fermenting can and we can decant the clarified wine off the top. Even after this the yeast continues to settle; so this is not the end of it – ideally we then want it to sit as long as humanly possible so we get a clearer wine.

Next, is the forced-clearing phase, where we change something to remove the residual floating debris as much as possible. This includes:

  1. Filtering (using a sieve or a fine filter) – I use a superfine kitchen sieve specially for this
  2. Additives – I’ve only ever used Bentonite (fuller’s earth or what we call ‘multani mitti’ in Hindi); mix this in some warm water and then add it into the wine barrel; shake well. This binds to the floating particles and weighs them down to the bottom.
  3. Temperature drop – this is best done after adding in bentonite as it’ll cause the settling to speed up, and the wine clears faster

And we’re done! Let it sit for 1-2 months (remember longer the better) undisturbed, and then we move on to really finishing it 😉