Lessons Learnt from 80Yrs

Here are some of the lessons from Blackstone’s Byron Wien in his first 80 years:

  1. Concentrate on finding a big idea that will make an impact on the people you want to influence.  The Ten Surprises, which I started doing in 1986, has been a defining product.  People all over the world are aware of it and identify me with it.  What they seem to like about it is that I put myself at risk by going on record with these events which I believe are probable and hold myself accountable at year-end.  If you want to be successful and live a long, stimulating life, keep yourself at risk intellectually all the time.
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DevOps Enterprise Summit Las Vegas 2018: Conference Review

Originally written for and posted at blogs@liatrio

DevOps Enterprise Summit Las Vegas 2018 took place in Las Vegas from October 22-24, and @teamliatrio had a great time bringing our largest number of consultants ever. The week was super productive and fun, especially since we coupled the conference with a consulting team offsite meeting. The move of the conference to Las Vegas originally had us a bit skeptical. However, the strength of the community and the quality of the speakers quickly won us over, furthering our belief that DevOps practitioners and evangelists are cut from the same cloth and are passionate about doing DevOps right.

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Hidden realities that create Enterprise Delivery problems

Originally written for and posted at blogs@liatrio

Enterprises look like very busy places. There is a lot of activity – massive programs and projects, long off-sites, strategy sessions, big investment portfolios, a whole lot of people, and a whole lot of action. But is work really getting done? If so, is it getting done the right way and with the right direction and momentum with a flow of ideas from implementation to delivery to customer satisfaction? And is there a culture of continuous learning, along with fast feedback and the optimization and use of that feedback?

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DevOps Enterprise Summit 2018 Planning

Vegas Here We Come!

Originally written for and posted at blogs@liatrio

The DevOps Enterprise Summit (DOES) 2018 is about 5 days away. We at Liatrio have been doing a lot of DevOps Enterprise Summit 2018 planning, and we’re getting ready to show up in full force with our consultants who lead our clients on their DevOps Transformation journeys. Members of our team have attended every U.S.-based DOES, this year and 10 members of our team are going!

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Maate Malayadwaja – Carnatic Classical

One of the most iconic & classic rendition of this raaga/song. 
Lyrics:

pallavi
Mathe Malaya dhwaja pandya samjathe mathanga vadana guha
(mate – 5times)
anupallavi
Sathodari sankari Chamundeswari Chandrakaladhari Thaye Gowri
(mAtE – 5times)
Swara
da da ni da da ni da da ni da da ni pa ma
da da ni ri sa ni sa da ni sa da pa pa ma
da da ni ga ri ni ri sa ni da pa ni da ma
da da ma ga ma pa ma pa da da ni ni da ma
da da ri sa ni da ni da da ma da ni ma ni
da da sa sa pa da ni da da ma ga ri sa ni
da da pa da da ni da da sa da ni da
ma ga ri sa ni da ni sa ni ni da da pa ma

(repeat at speed)

Jathi
thAmthAm thakajoNu dadanida dimithika | tamtam kukuthari thajaNutha dapamama ||
dAdA nigarini risadhimi tharikita | jamjam thakitatha kukuthari Namthari ||
dAthathin ginathari jEkumada nithaka | Namthasa sathimitha thomthadi mithakita ||
dAdapa dAdatha rEkusa dArijam | magari sanidA nisanini dadapama ||
(repeat at speed)
SAhityA
Data sakala kala nipuna chathura
Data vividha matha samaya samarasa
Data sulabha hrudaya madhura vachana
Data sarasa ruchira tara swaralaya
Geetha sukada nija bhava rasikavara dhata
Mahisha suranada nalmadi srikrishna rajendra nadaya
Sada pore mahitha harikesa manohare sadaya
(repeat at speed)
(mate – repeat 1time)
charaNam
Shyame sakala bhuvana sarva bhoume sasi mandala madhyaga (repeat 5times)

MA,MA, pani dada papa magamapa MA,MA, nida MAsani dapadada

Shyame sakala bhuvana sarva bhoume sasi mandala madhyaga
nidanida dapapama PAPA nidapama gamaPA nidaMA sanidapa MAnida

Shyame sakala bhuvana sarva bhoume sasi mandala madhyaga
saSAsa nidanisa niDApa magamapa maMAma samagama pasanida NI (repeat 2times)
nidani padani mapadani gamapadani samagama padani samagari sasanida pada

Shyame sakala bhuvana sarva bhoume sasi mandala madhyaga

gani magamadani sama nigama sanima nidaga nigari dada rini sadani pada samagama nida nidamaga

(mAtE)

composed by Harikesavanallur Muthiah Bhagavathar

—————————————————

Meaning:
 
O Mother! You are the daughter of the Pandya king Malayadhwaja,
You are the lady with the face glowing green.
O Mother! You have the beauty of the moon.
You have the great expertise in all the arts,
You allow equal rights to all the creeds,
You are soft and sweet spoken,
You express affection in music and rhythm,
You inspire us with your beautiful and expressive song,
You have gained fame for killing the demon, Mahishasura,
You protect and care for Sri Krishna Rajendra, the Maharaja of Mysore,
Even pray to Siva and the mother Parvati.
Mother! You glow with the blue colour,
You care for the whole world,
You glow like a full moon.
——————————————————————–
Notes:

“Maate Malayadhwaja” is a prayer to the Hindu goddess Madurai Meenakshy Devi.

——————————————————————-

 

Paneer Jalfrazi

Paneer Jalfrezi is an easy & tasty paneer dish that goes great with rumali roti & biryani. This will not take more than 20mins which for Indian cooking is fast food!

To keep it simple, follow the steps below:

  1. Take a non-stick pan, heat it, add a spoon full of butter and let it melt.
  2. Take a packet of Paneer, wash it and cut them into 1×1 inch cubes.
  3. Now add the paneer to the butter and let the paneer fry till they turn brown. Not fried but to make them firm.
  4. Now cut the following vegetables as big chunks and keep them aside – 1 onion, 1 bell pepper & 2 tomatoes. Keeping them big is key.
  5. Now take a deep/big pan and dry roast – 5 peppercorns, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, coriander seeds and 4-5 red chillies. Keep them aside to cool. After they cool, grind them for 10secs and take out half of the mixture. Finely grind the remaining mixture.
  6. Now in the same dish, add another spoon of butter and when it melts, add the vegetables and stir fry them rapidly. Now add the fine mixture to make sure it mixes with the vegetables. Add some salt to make sure it cooks faster.
  7. Now add the panner and on high flame, keep stir frying. You don’t need a lot of time here; you need the garnish to mix well.
  8. Turn off the flame and add the corse mixture on top, add some mint leaves and leave the curry covered for a few minutes before serving.

One difference between how I make this and what is traditionally made is the addition of tomato sauce. I don’t like it as it get too tangy and the paneer gets a tomato flavor & I like to retain the paneer flavor.

Mirchi ka Salan

Mirchi ka Salan is one of those dishes that you have to spend a ton of time making it and then it fades away as a side dish. But a biryani, especially a Hyderabadi biryani, without a really good salan is just a dinner incomplete.

Salan, either Mirchi or any other time needs time and patience. My order of making biryani dinner is to make the biryani first and set it up for 4hrs of slow cook & then start the salan. This will need about 2hrs.

To keep it simple, follow the steps below:

  1. Take a non-stick pan and heat it till its hot. Put the flame on a simmer and add a small cup of groundnuts. Roast them for 2mins till they become slightly brown and their skin starts coming off. Then add, using the same small cup as before, sesame seeds. Roast these for a minute. Now turn off the flame and add a small cup of grated coconut. Mix well and leave it on the pan for another 2-3 minutes. Now put them in a blender and let them cool.
  2. In the same non-stick pan, add a lot of oil. Heat the oil well and add a small spoonful of mustard seeds. When mustard seeds splutter add cumin seeds, red chillies, methi seeds. Let all of these cook for a bit.
  3.  Cut 1 big onion into small rings and add it to the mixture and let the onions sauté for a while. Onions don’t need to be brown but they need to get soggy. Now add salt, curry leaves and let the curry leave get soft.
  4. Now add a spoonful of ginger garlic paste cook till raw flavor is gone. Now add turmeric, red chilly powder, cumin powder, coriander powder. Mix all of this well.
  5. Now grind the groundnut, sesame & grated coconut mixture into a fine paste by adding water and add it to the frying ingredients. Add water till the mixture becomes really thin and has no lumps.
  6. Now comes the most important part. Put this on a slow flame, cover with a lid and leave it without touch for 60mins. No short cuts here, just leave it as it is. After 60mins and take a look. If you do not see oil separated out fully, leave it on for another 30mins. The whole taste rests on this step.
  7. Heat some oil in a different pan, slice big mirchi’s vertically; remove the seeds and fry them in the oil. The mirchi need not get deep fried but needs to be fried enough to hold shape.
  8. Slice mint and coriander leaves and add it to the simmering mixture. Now add 3-4 spoons of yogurt to this and mix well. At this point, the mixture may get thick. Add some water if needed. At this time, taste a little to check salt, spiciness. Add what is needed.
  9. Heat some oil, put a lemon sized serving of tamarind and squeeze the juice out.
  10. Add the tamarind juice to the simmering mixture and taste again.
  11. Now add the fried mirchi to the mixture, cover the lid and simmer for 10mins. This will get the mirchi to soak in the flavors.
  12. Serve along with biryani.

Sambar – Andhra Home Style

Sambar in our house is always made the same way. Non-complicated; non restaurant style but something that is light and good with rice/idly & dosa.

To keep it simple, follow the following steps:

  1. Take a palm full or toor dal, add water & pressure cook the dal. Make sure it is done well.
  2. Cut vegetables first. The technique of Sambar is that there should be more water and it should not be like a gravy. For this, use very few vegetables so that its wet. Cut 2 okra, 1 onion, 1 tomato, 1 brinjal & 1/5th of bottle gourd. If you have large green chillies, cut one. Cut all vegetables into huge pieces – not small.
  3. Heat some water in a small cup; take a lemon sized portion of tamarind; wash it and leave it in the hot water.
  4. Take a huge vessel and pour 4-5 tbs of oil. You will need a little more oil in this step. Heat the oil and when its hot add in the following order – Urad Dal, Channa Dal, Cumin & Mustard seeds. Let these turn golden brown. Lower the flame and now add dhaniya (1tbsp) and just 4 pepper corns. After they cook for a minute, add 4 red chillies and shut down the flame. Remove this onto a plate & let this cool. Leave excess oil in this vessel.
  5. In the same vessel, with the same excess oil, put in all of the vegetables, a few curry leaves and fry them. Fry for a while to make them mushy.
  6. After 10mins, squeeze the tamarind juice & without any pulp, pour the tamarind juice into the vegetables. Mix well.
  7. Now add 2 big glasses of water & let it come to boil.
  8. Now add the cooked dal and let it simmer for 10-15mins till everything mixes in well.
  9. Add salt as desired and add 1 tbsp of haldi powder.
  10. Lower the flame & when you are done simmering the mixture and 5mins before you are done; grind the tadka mixture very fine; add it to the vessel.
  11. After 5mins, remove the Sambar.

Game of Flow – Agile vis-a-vis Waterfall

Software Delivery is hard! Very hard.

Inherently, compared to writing software, delivery should be technically simple and needing less intelligence but thanks to the cumbersome, large, bureaucratic & silo’d enterprises; technical work has often become the easiest and the cheapest part – managing managers – has become the expensive part.

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Vegetable Dum Biryani – Simple Style

In my series of mastering the various biryani styles from all over India, here is a recipe for a quick 1hr preparation.

To make it simple, follow the steps in order.

  1. Soak Rice first. Plan rice to masala ration. Make sure you keep rice to masala ration of 2:1. When rice is flavorful, the masala will become secondary.
  2. Heat a small quantity of oil. Make sure the oil is hot. Chop onions finely when the oil is heating. Mix the onions with corn flour and in small batches, fry the onions. The goal here is to fry them and keep them aside so that they become dry and crunchy.
  3. Marinate – Sour Yogurt, Salt, Red Pepper, Turmeric, Whole Masala & Bombay Dum Biryani Masala, Oil.
  4. In a 1:2 ratio, grind ginger & garlic to form a coarse paste. Add into the marinate above.
  5. Chop Vegetables in a slightly bigger fashion.
    • Mushrooms
    • Carrot
    • Potato
    • Green Beans.
    • Cauliflower
  6. Chop greens – Mint and Coriander. Make sure there are no thick stalks. Keep aside.
  7. Add in the chopped vegetables to the marinate; add in half of the mint and coriander and keep it aside for 30mins.
  8. Boil water. When boiling, cook rice up to 75%. Add in some salt and oil.
  9. Take a deep, big pan, put some oil and garnish the marinate+vegetables.
  10. Pour rice on vegetables.
  11. High Heat for 5 mins and low heat for 15mins with close lid.

Happy Cooking!

The Revenant

Disturbing, gruesome, hard to digest. Revenant as a visual experience is a tough watch.

But for what its worth, once you sit through the movie, there are questions that you ask yourself. Can we, the modern 21st century humans can deal with lack of material comforts and technology. Do we have what it takes to survive the elements and have a hunger to live. Maybe its unfair considering the advances we have made but makes you wonder if a story like this, how much ever  fictionalized, could have ever happened a couple of centuries back.

Tom Hardy was phenomenal and is lost in the character.  He does not stand out as someone who needs to be felt for or thought about even though the performance is stellar.

As expected, this is a Leonardo DiCaprio show. Does he deserve an Oscar for this performance – maybe or maybe not – but the suffering to make this movie and the determination to showcase the braving of elements deserves our applause. IMHO, he should have been given an award a long time back and I am wondering if he had one; would this movie have a different dimension to it; maybe we would have gotten to see the side of story that was less about suffering and more about the return from death – the revenant. And maybe, just maybe, Alejandro Inarritu would have directed a movie with a little more to it than just human ability to survive for revenge.

The Hateful Eight

And the 8th film does not disappoint as well. A story that can be summarized in one line but the whole 2.5hrs does justice to what all needs to take place to serve revenge cold!

A director whose filmography I go tend to go back to on those nights when you cannot sleep, the hateful eight adds a type of screen-writing edge that made me want to immediately re-watch the film to make sure I get to experience the intensity for a couple of more hrs.

And that it is 70mm is just the icing on the cake.

Loving Work!

Simple checklist of why I love the work I do:

  1. I am truly passionate about the work. I really believe in it and I love it!
  2. I get to take on work that I like, work when I like and generally control all aspects of my life (with & without work)
  3. I don’t have to worry about un-necessary stuff. Meetings, events, politics.
  4. I get paid very well for the work I do and the talent I possess.
  5. I have a good life, all things considering!

Walking!

So simple, yet so difficult.

In the last 3days, I have walked closed to 15miles. That’s all I did. Just walked 4 times in the last 3 days, 45mins on the treadmill – resisting the urge to run or lift waits or think about routines. Just walk.

Its boring! It feels idiotic but mostly, it feels useless. It feels like I am wasting my time and it feels like I could be getting so much value doing something else.

But…

For once I want to give this a shot. 3miles everyday for a month. I will read fiction or non-fiction and not think about if its adding value or not but just showing up and doing it right and doing it everyday! Small steps, simple progress forward; continuous improvements. That’s what I tell my clients anyways…

Home Buying: Lessons and Experiences

Saw a house we fell in love with in the middle of May; had the lowest offer among the bidders but a letter to do with FC Barcelona and FC Liverpool did the trick, went through ups and downs of inspections, contingencies, appraisals and about 12days past supposed closing date, signed the papers. Keys in hand and some celebration. Home Ownership, phew!

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DevOps Service Delivery Quadrant

In the DevOps philosophy, one critical item to focus on is the co-relation of a software delivery functions that need to be performed to the tools that are being used. Tools are nothing but a constrained codification of a process so the actual tooling is always secondary to the function that needs to be satisfied. So as long as a function is satisfied when it comes to delivery (like code analysis or monitoring); what tool you use or do not, really does not matter.

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Decoding Toyota DNA

 A fascinating read that really explains how a culture of continuous improvement embodies the Toyota manufacturing system and how generations after generations of workers are trained constantly to solve problems at their level by using tools in the form of countermeasures, problem-solving as a way to keep getting better and coaching by asking questions to enforce the idea of empowerment.

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Mandolin Shrinivas – Rest in Music

Call it the bane of living away from what affects one’s heart a lot. 4 months late; just found out about the passing of Mandolin Shrinivas last September (thanks to this dedication by Amit Trivedi).

My first recollection of hearing Shrinivas was during the Sunday 10AM Doordarshan’s Spirit of Unity Concerts from Madras Telugu Academy in early 90’s mostly with Shankar Mahadevan & a lot of young kids. The first I saw him live was during Remember Shakti’s winter India tour where they performed at Hyderabad’s Taramati Baradri sometime in 02/03.

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40 Reasons for a man to dress well

Not that there are dearth of reasons for a man to dress well but this I think is a great list as to why you want to look your best. As a consultant, I pride on looking my best(different from being good looking 😉 at all times so that people who work with me have the confidence that I will do my best at all times as well. So here it goes; some wise words!

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11 things from Hubspot Culture Code

HubSpot Culture Code:

  • Culture is to recruiting as a product is to marketing.
  • Whether you like it or not, you’re going to have a culture. Why not make it one you love?
  • Solve For The Customer — not just their happiness, but also their success.
  • Power is now gained by sharing knowledge, not hoarding it.
  • “Sunlight is the best disinfectant.”
  • You shouldn’t penalize the many for the mistakes of the few.
  • Results should matter more than when or where they are produced.
  • Influence should be independent of hierarchy.
  • Great people want direction on where they’re going — not directions on how to get there.
  • “Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without.”
  • We’d rather be failing frequently than never trying.

Feedback @ravi_kalaga

You will be missed Mr. Robin Williams

RobinWilliamsMagnum

There’s three things in this world that you need: Respect for all kinds of life, a nice bowel movement on a regular basis, and a navy blazer.”— Robin Williams, The Fisher King

You have given a whole lot of us, 100’s of hrs of joy and an insight into how to look at life in a slanted way. We will miss your humor, your ability to perform non-stop and the thought that what is outside is not what is inside.

Rest in peace you crazy genius!

Gameday 3: ManU (0) vs. Liverpool (1)

Wonderful start to the season continues. Fantastic game by Liverpool even tough we just about held on with a lucky early goal.

Cautious optimism, yes but three 1-0 wins with each game having 60mins of defending and not crumbling shows something. In this game especially, we did not lose the formation in the second half where we had meagre possession but the fact that there was just one shot on goal proves how well the back 4 are working and this without Kolo Toure.

BlogImages-39

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Game Day 1: Stoke (0) v. Liverpool (1)

BlogImages-38

Another season, great expectations and a promise to return the club to the heights that they truly belong at. All optimism aside, its not going to be a easy season and we are not going to win the league and all we should look forward to is to play some good possession football, make no mistakes and look for some luck to push up to the top 4.

If the stoke game is anything to go by – the passing was excellent in spurts in the first half. We put up 15-20 pass clutches 2 or 3 times and one of them led to a goal. But if we are truly going to be in the running for top 4, we need that all important second goal in the first half and not give away the ball cheaply. And Agger style mistakes are what we really need to avoid.

We will loose on the road to the likes on Man U, Man City & Chelsea and we will drop points on those winter nights at Villa or Sunderland but if we can close out Anfield games with 2 goal margins and then keep the ball and not make mistakes in our half; the points are only ours to loose. Big clubs do this well and they do this consistently and a 2 goal lead will shield us against the mistakes that are bound to be made. We are a Big Club!

Good start; scrappy at times but good start.

Velocity Conference – 2013

Was at Velocity conference @ Santa Clara last week was an absolute blast! Had a chance to attend all three days of the conference with a few of my colleagues from work and along with the Atlassian conference, this has to be one of the best out there. The speaker list had a good mix of some really good technical topics but mostly, the conversation centred around how fast technology is changing and how culture needs to change to ensure that we keep going in the right direction.

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Stuff I am tinkering with!

Stuff I am working with these days.

  • Ruby on Rails
  • jQuery
  • backbone.js
  • PostgreSQL
  • Redis
  • Heroku
  • Amazon Web Services (EC2, S3, SQS, RDS)
  • Facebook API
  • Continuous Integration & Delivery
  • Devops (Extension of work to home)
  • Technical writing (Extension from work to home)

Something I have learnt along the way: Having work that is not focussed on engineering with latest technologies definitely holds you back. But having work that you are passionate about and good at vs. coming home to work on stuff that interests you is definitely rewarding. You learn a lot about yourself.

Feedback @ravi_kalaga

Raghu Dixit: Addicted

Heard him live a few weeks back in SF and have been addicted to his songs ever since. Nothing fancy about the writing but the sound is uniquely Indian; something I have not heard in a while.

Watch him sing some of the Kannada songs, makes you wish there were more of this kind of performers out there.

California Deserts – RoadTrip Aug 2012

Travelling to the deserts of California in the summer for a foolish idea to start with. No two ways about it. It’s hot, 115-120 degrees hot, dry and most of all, very intimidating. But there are perks to it – you have the largest national park in the 48 states mostly to yourself, empty parking lots and fancy accommodations at dirt cheap prices.

Death Valley, Mohave and Joshua Tree are now checked off from the list. A peak into the trip for anyone planning to do a part of the route.

The trip started off on a tuesday evening with a 5hr/350 miles nearly non-stop drive to the largest American naval land base-town of Ridgecrest. Just another small army town with clean motels, starbucks and a Dennys to feed the hungry at odd hours. Crashed at a chain hotel and day 1 begins. Ridgecrest hits you hard at 7am with 100 degree heat and the first view of the vast expanse that is a desert which would be a constant companion for the rest of the trip.

Made a quick decision to hit death valley straight. The other option would be to drive up 395 and pull into the base-camp of Mt. Whitney which at 4,400+ mts is the tallest peak in the lower 48 states. Just 120+ miles from the destination for the day, Badwater Basin, the lowest point in the lower 48 states. California is amazing!

Left Mt. Whitney for another trip and drove past ghost towns and former industry towns to get to the kindred spirit that is the entrance to the national park. It standsway before you actually enter the park and there is a still a good deal of driving before you pass through the barrier mountains that leads to the actual death valley. The actual park is the largest in the contiguous USA but as you can actually see for miles on end in all direction, the scope makes this park feel small. But the canvas is HUGE! The actual valley floor from the Northern most point to the southern most point is close to 100miles. And at Furnace Creek, that is the central point on the valley floor that recorded the highest US temp of 134 degrees, you can see close to 50 miles in each direction.

Furnace Creek is also the only spot for food and gas in the entire park. Decent food later, at 120 degrees of heat, the next stop was Badwater Basin , the lowest point in the US at 285 ft. There is actual “bad water” here that is pretty gory to look at. A quick detour enroute badwater leads to a place call the Devil’s Golf Course which is basically the valley floor all dug up due to heat. The moisture is so less that the earth actually cracks up for miles on end. Pretty awesome sight.

The valley floor is hot. Very very hot. More hotter than that is the actual air trapped inside the valley. Summer nights the minimum holds up at around 90-95 degrees which us quite awesome to experience. Burning, truely at the midnight hour!

Twilight is supposedly gorgeous but had cloud cover on that particular day. The lights play an interlude apparently on the valley floor but was too exhausted to trek down from the mountains.

Outside the park, spent the night at this opera house called Amaragosa. I would call it creepy but it actually was not. Definetly not a regular hotel… long, really long corridors and open ceiling rest rooms!! All non fussy traveller should stay in a place like this once to experience the times gone by.

So much for the one day-one night trip to Death Valley. I don’t forsee going here again but definitely will not rule out for a California enthusiast. The drive in and out is a pleasure with parking lots, ghost towns, borax works preserved sites and mountains with an artists palette all over them all for yourself with very little disturbance.

Part 2 coming up shortly. Will cover the great trails highway, Mohave and Joshua Tree next. Some pictures from the trip.

Sensible Financial Advice

This has to be the most simple financial advice I have come across in a long while. By Scott Adams:

  1. Make a will
  2. Pay off your credit cards
  3. Get term life insurance if you have a family to support
  4. Fund your 401k to the maximum
  5. Fund your IRA to the maximum
  6. Buy a house if you want to live in a house and can afford it
  7. Put six months worth of expenses in a money-market account
  8. Take whatever money is left over and invest 70% in a stock index fund and 30% in a bond fund through any discount broker and never touch it until retirement
  9. If any of this confuses you, or you have something special going on (retirement, college planning, tax issues), hire a fee-based financial planner, not one who charges a percentage of your portfolio

 

If I had to add to add something from an Indian POV to the above –

  1. By a small piece of real estate in India. Comparing population to area, land will always appreciate there.
  2. Don’t buy a fancy german car before buying a house. The market is cheaper now to buy a house than an expensive car.
  3. Don’t travel to places where you will have to take your kids or parents alone or with your spouse. You will have to do it again and it will be expensive. Rule out Europe, LA, Orlando or DC.
  4. If you still have something left over, buy a vacation door/cabin in Tahoe or LA or Hawaii. They are at the rock bottom now and rent is always more than mortgage.
  5. My only don’t: Stay away from a house in US till you know you will settle here. The closing and selling costs are not what you think they are.

Thoughts by Chanakya

1) “Learn from the mistakes of others… you can’t live long enough to make them all yourselves!!”

2)”A person should not be too honest. Straight trees are cut first and Honest people are screwed first.”

3)”Even if a snake is not poisonous, it should pretend to be venomous.”

4)”There is some self-interest behind every friendship. There is no friendship without self-interests. This is a bitter truth.”

5)” Before you start some work, always ask yourself three questions – Why am I doing it, What the results might be and Will I be successful. Only when you think deeply and find satisfactory answers to these questions, go ahead.”

6)”As soon as the fear approaches near, attack and destroy it.”

7)”The world’s biggest power is the youth and beauty of a woman.”

8)”Once you start a working on something, don’t be afraid of failure and don’t abandon it. People who work sincerely are the happiest.”

9)”The fragrance of flowers spreads only in the direction of the wind. But the goodness of a person spreads in all direction.”

10)”God is not present in idols. Your feelings are your god. The soul is your temple.”

11) “A man is great by deeds, not by birth.”

12) “Never make friends with people who are above or below you in status. Such friendships will never give you any happiness.”

13) “Treat your kid like a darling for the first five years. For the next five years, scold them. By the time they turn sixteen, treat them like a friend. Your grown up children are your best friends.”

14) “Books are as useful to a stupid person as a mirror is useful to a blind person.”

15) “Education is the Best Friend. An Educated Person is Respected Everywhere. Education beats the Beauty and the Youth.”