Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Do Atheist have morals?

Do Atheist Have Morals?
Atheist and Moral, are they contradictory? So why is this question ? This was the first question came to my mind when I had decided to be an Atheist. Religions, all over the world, tried to define morals for society. In fact, the morality comes very closer on the religious agenda. What is morality anyways? To me, its an ability to distinguish differences between right or wrong. However, how could you tell what is right or wrong?
Generally religious morality are based on following few common morals,
- Do not Kill
- Do not Stealing
- abstaining from intoxicants
- false speech
- sensual misconduct
Basically all it means is what is not yours and what you don't control is forbidden. Also the behavior which may hurt others should be abstained.
Any atheist person will agree of all of these factors. No atheist will kill or steal just because he or she is an atheist. 
The biggest difference is while theist think or taught that the immoral behavior attracts punishment of some kind and should follow morality on fear of punishment or reward, atheist think that its their own responsibility to behave morally but without any fear or reward.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I hate Corruption ! So what? I don't support Anna Way?

Curious voice : Are you with Anna? 
Me: "No". 
Aggressive voice : Don't you want corruption to end?
Me : I want corruption to end.
One angry Voice : Then, why are you not supporting Anna's Jan LokPal?
Me: I don't think that will going to end corruption.
Frustrated and Still angry voice : People like you are here, that is why India is in neck dip in Corruption. You must be from Congress. All politicians are ****, and you are one of the blind supporter of them. You are not a patriot. And much more angry and emotional outburst.
I thought, what I have said which has pissed off my friend. I never took or gave any bribe, atleast not from the time, I gain my consciousness. I am not terrorist. I have faith in India. So why on one fine day, my friend has easily labelled me as unpatriotic?
There is so much written for or against Anna and his team. I also have my own reservations on any national or social issue. So why I was deprived from expressing myself. Why is it become "only Anna" equation? 
In the time of Mahatma Gandhi, there were lot number of people who were critic of his methods. Ambedkar on Social or Bose on National issue. Not always people went for Gandhi. 
So If I decide not to join Anna movement or criticize him, why such anger?
I am not with corruption and I doubt who are doing corruption may also are against corruption. There is always a small section of society who loves to break law for enjoyment. Just leave this group, and see that all other are against corruption. But nowadays its a fad to support Anna. I have seen a group of builders who were supporting Anna. Shall I need to say more?
What is corruption exactly? 
- Political corruption : It is the abuse of power by the state official for the private gain. 
- Social corruption : To stops valuing integrity, honesty, virtue or moral principles. 
For what we are targeting is Political corruption and not the social corruption. Because we all know how corrupt we all are. Corruption start at rock bottom level, going upwards well nourished and protected. 
Most of us have the target of "getting thing done". It is because lack of knowledge of the processes, checking for short-cuts which are not at all necessary. 
I see, passing the Jan Lokpal bill is one more moral, social and constitutional corruption we are committing. 
If someone is going to make a law in this country, then its my right to ask questions about it. Why the open discussions are not being held? Why more emotional outburst that the rational answers. The same so called weaker laws have put A Raja and Kalmadi and many others behind bars. Why are we forgetting the case of
"Nanavati and Ahuja Murder case" where we had to abandon the system of Jury from the Judicial system of the country, which is still prevalent in many western countries.
There are many bill are required, separate bills, like Police reforms, Judicial procedure reforms, Political parties reforms, etc need to handle corruption. 
But what about social corruption? I heard many of my friends are very proud saying that they get so many things in dowry. Many of us still look down-ridden caste as ugly and disgusting. Many of us are involved in honour killing. Beside all this, many of us are living on the space which was reserved for forest or school or children park. The list is countless. These things were in our hand, but we turned blind because it profits us. 
I don't want bloody revolution in my country, I don't support Modi because of what had happened in Gujrat, I don;t support congress becasue of what they did with Sikhs and I don't support many others because of this. 
I believe in Democracy, I believe in elective representation in Parliament, I believe in our independent Judicial system. I believe in reforms from dialog and discussion. It needs Patience and courage. Here, Team Anna, who don't represent people of India, dictatorial mandate to Pass the bill in single session doesn't go well with me. Hence I don't support his fast and bill. 

I would like to give a quote from Ambedkar.
If we wish to maintain democracy not merely in form, but also in fact, what must we do? The first thing in my judgment we must do is to hold fast to constitutional methods of achieving our social and economic objectives. It means we must abandon the bloody methods of revolution. It means that we must abandon the method of civil disobedience, non-cooperation and satyagraha. When there was no way left for constitutional methods for achieving economic and social objectives, there was a great deal of justification for unconstitutional methods. But where constitutional methods are open, there can be no justification for these unconstitutional methods. These methods are nothing but the Grammar of Anarchy and the sooner they are abandoned, the better for us. – Dr.B.R. Ambedkar

Monday, August 22, 2011

Shudras are not untouchables!

While discussing about reservations in Indian system, my friends told me that it is okay to give reservations for Shudras. I asked him, what do you mean by Shudra? My friends said, weren't they untouchables?
Often we don't know the history or remember some part of it. The above information might have come from false interpretation or limited knowledge. In my history classes, I never taught about the actual history of India. The actual history of India is not well written and highly speculative. All we know for sure that there was a system existed in India. There was Varna system and caste system. Caste are different from Varna. This must be well understood. People often mix here. They think Varna and Caste system are same. They are not same, may be mixed but not same. Varna is basic division of then society in four major parts,
- Brahmin (mainly priests, scholors)
- Kshatriya(kings, warriors)
- Vaishya(traders)
- Sudra(craftsmen, labourer)
Castes are endogamous groups which may sub-divided in sub-caste.

But the untouchables are not part of any of this. They are simply outcaste. Anyone outside the then society and not in varnas are outcaste, chandaal.

Untouchables or even the shadow of them were considered unpure.

The outcastes are below sudra and not a part of society. So next time if you hear someone is confusing between shudra and untouchable, tell them the reality.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Luck ?

What is Luck?

"Hey, today I won a ticket to Paris. I am the only lucky person among 200."
"I won lottery of 1 million $."
"Wish you best of luck for you future."

Looking at general point of view about luck, I still don't understand luck and its consequences.

What is luck? I say, I don't believe in luck but use it as a word in day-to-day interactions.

Luck is a false idea. It just give you a ray of hope in oddities. It's just a positive thinking. It has no spritual or scientific base.
No one believe in luck, yet they just want it to be on their side. Have you come across someone who actually said, I am lucky and I will win this lottery?
It is such a fragile idea that only after something happen you come to know about it.

Let's say, Person A has won a lottery for a trip to Thailand (or wherever), while on board plane has accident and Person A died in it.

Following would be the outcome of statements:
- Person A is lucky to have won lottery (after lottery results out)
- Person A is unlucky that he died in plane crash (after plane crash)

Let's alter the plane crash outcome to Person A lightly injured.
- Person A is lucky to have escaped death (after being hospitalized)

3rd outcome: Person A badly injured, all limbs gone
- Person A is lucky to have escaped death (after being hospitalized)
- Person A is unlucky because of limbs loss (after being hospitalized)

So the Person A luck is always happens after. You can't determine the fate of Person A before something happened.

Skill and Effort:
In the above example, Person A requires no skill or effort to win the lottery. Person A just needs to participate in that lottery, willingly or not.

CAT exam for entrance to MBA is an extremely difficult exam to crack. If there is only one seat and two people with same name, age, abilities, marks, background etc.. Are contending for it and one get than seat, the one is lucky and other is unlucky.

In first example, person A requires no skill or effort to win that lottery. It is possible that he may not even have opted for it. But in second case, the winner and loser both have put their equal efforts to win that seat. The unseen phenomenon if someone termed as luck by the virtue of day to day language is fine. But otherwise how good it to be judge for the looser who has put exactly the same amount of effort but still a looser. The explanation cannot come handy on some superstition things like Karma in last life, or the luck or something like this. If something is already written, then why to take an effort? Or taking effort is also written somewhere. The idea of being a play tool of someone who has taken good efforts to write about everything about everyone is scary. Mammoth effort, isn't it? To do such thing, only effort and skill are required. Nothing is automatically done.

Luck and Decision making
Decision making is a collective result of experience, skill, thinking, etc. Do you really put your luck in your decision making?

Luck is essentially a wishful thinking and nothing else. It is just denying the unpredictability of random events.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Anti-Corruption tamasha and People

Since Anna Hazare declared that he's going to fast in peaceful way at Jantar Mantar, I have started following the movement. Corruption in India is a chronic problem, and must be tackled before it eats us all. Everyone will agree, but not everyone will agree on how the movement should follow the path. In general, any movements where people are agreed on the goal but not on the strategy have parallel but different routes of achievement. Freedom movement in India had Gandhi, Bose, Bhagat Singh singing different tunes but for same goal. For many people Hazare is unconditional leader, whereas for some Baba ramdeo is just taking limelight from the movement started by Anna. The baba is still very much immature in politics and has not deal with them on political issues before this agitation. On the other hand, Anna Hazare has long experience with Maharashtrian powerful leaders. The fast is not new to Anna. But even Anna has limitations. He can't be compared with Gandhi. The picture created in front of Indians is that all the politicians are crooked, corrupted and thugs. In that case, it’s all common people vs. political class.
With the start of this movement, people have put all political parties and in general all politicians bar. While we must consider that there is considerable truth in these allegations as none of the politician with corruption charges went in Jail. Corruption is rampant in India as we all know, but from where to start is the real question. There are anti-corruption bureau at almost all the districts in India. This department exists with CBI, CID etc. Along with ED, Income tax, Central Vigilance Commission, Lokayukta all exist. But they exist with very minimal powers. The willing to fight against corruption doesn’t reflect in these personal. After all, corruption is in Indian blood, so corruption exists in all the area which deals with public. Education, health, public works these are the oasis for corruption.

The movement is trying to create cure than prevention. Of course the cure is important as the disease is well blown. The remedy is not so easy or one day solution. Consider, if someone want that he will always stay lean. For this he’s to follow the path of complete and well balanced diet along with exercise. For a fat person, getting lean is a process and this process has to continue throughout the life of the person. Same is with this cure; this should not be seen as silver bullet.

Even the lokpal bill which is proposed with so many things will have all the powers. In the end the lokpal will have to investigate and give judgment, but this will not stop the accused to call the high court wherein his case will be pending for long. So in the lokayukta is nothing but the arbitrator between common people and accused. Hence this will not solve any problem as we thing it will. But this could be seen as 2nd step against corruption. Why I have said that this is 2nd step, because I consider Right of Information Act was the first step. I agree that this act need many corrections and protection to the people using act. But in general this act has created fear among babus. The accountability is now on rise.

So can we think on and try to find some common problems and possible remedy.

1)    The low level corruption at various public departments
2)    The corrupt people even if they caught are not punished for long time.
3)    Tendency of common public about escaping the law
4)    The awareness about the wastage of public money among all class of people
5)    Business grown with the help of corrupted people
6)    Justice delayed
7)    Delaying or doing nothing will also be considered under corruption
To be completed…

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Learning from Failures

This is a developer summary on the project developed and managed from scratch. This is my experiements in last 3 years.

The last project was developed (?) and (mis) managed entirely by me and colleague with the same experience as me. In the process I have understood the importance of design, planning, processes, project management, test management and code reusability, etc. I have learned this all from the failures.
The project was started on a note that it will be a small migration from dot net to java, should be complete in 6 months and we are free to use any thing we want to.

The problem started with communication. The requirements were not clear, but as old habit die hard, at least for us Indians, we never bother for a more specifications. Rather, we had imagined things as they have come and implemented. Of course, in the end, the product was not so near to what was expected. It was not far from expected either. But it dragged a project a little bit more, just for rework.

Unit tests:
This is best part of our project. More often we don’t have unit test cases (Junit), but in case where the unit test cases were written, didn’t serve the purpose.
I have noted down the problems below:
- Unit test cases were connecting to database. They will fail in other than dev environment; hence we found a solution to have different config files for different env.
- Unit tests were more close to system tests where we test the entire system and not just part of it.
- Discussed Test Driven Development but never ever tried to implement
- We never had time to write unit tests. ;-)

Code Documentation:
While we always has specification and functional stuff defined on project wiki, we never seriously believed in documentation on code. I know that document is not always helpful or necessary, as masters say that clean code is always preferable.
But we had neither. :-D

Coding Style:
All developers has there own style of writing the code. Hence our code was cluttered with two not so different styles, Hungerian and CamelCase. One developer has declared class variable like m_BlaNothing, while other has blaNothing. The formatting specified for code is different for both developers. Even the development environment was not same, I was using BEA Workshop (Bea’s eclipse with weblogic debugging facilities) and other has eclipse. When the third developer joined the team, he started using the latest version of eclipse.

Now in India, 3 years of coding experience seems good. I don’t consider myself as a bad developer and colleague is also good thinker and developer. We both had just above 3 years of experience when we started working on this project. Soon after I came to know that we have had very limited knowledge about the designing the software. I realized that I can write a complicated piece of code, but can’t design system entirely from scratch. It’s a huge limitation. Designing software comes with experience and practicing and reading lots of design pattern and much more. And at that time, I knew only one design pattern, Singleton. ;-)

Code Reusability:
We knew from start that code should be reused. But we have lacked with the vision of how to achieve this.
I think following we should have done:
- Put generic code at common place.
- Communicate often about the code.
Instead what we have done is,
- Never discussed amongst us as what we are developing and how are we developing
- The developed code, even if it at common place, is not communicated with others.
Now, the problem started occurring while we were refactoring some code after few years. Many times, we had just updated at one place, forgetting others. So usually we had problems on Prod env.

Clean Code:
Every programmer should read once, Clean Code book. We had done all the things, exactly opposite as what is said in that book. And we faced the consequences.

Half baked implementation of frameworks:
Spring, iBatis, Hibernate etc, was used at will. If developer things that JDBC is his comfort zone, then use JDBC otherwise iBatis. Spring was always underutilized as none of our modules used any of the spring features.

Test Case Management:
The automated and manual tests are managed in Quality Center. We have developed a wonderful script using, VAPI-XP script to automate our web services. We have also managed to use selenium to manage web based modules in quality center.
But the main problems with those test cases are, they check for more conditions than required or specified in test case. Hence test case can fail even if the output is what is expected.

I have seen things going wrong, and managed to correct them. I have learned a pretty hard lesson in all this process. But on the bright side, I have come up as a better programmer. I think that’s the best part.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Getting Social

Recent developments in social networking sites are now a phenomenon. The pace of connecting people is so huge that it can be only called as mass rage. People of all age groups are attracted towards some form of networking. One may wonder how people used to interact with each other when the technologies like internet and mobile were not developed. The technology is helping us to move closer and making truly marking an era of single global village.
All at the same time a new form of commerce is developing within social networks. The advertising which was earlier limited to TV or radio commercials are expanded to the social media. Mails are scanned by autobots, chat windows are showing text based ads, searching information are promoting paid ads and many more. The revenue is not just generated for the companies who own social network sites, but also to those small businesses who want to reach to the larger audiences at lower price and more eyes of user. It is easy to search as well as order things on net than that of going out and finding one. Just take an example of courier service, once dubbed as potential failure after invention of e-mails are now booming because people have started purchasing on net and couriers are delivering the orders. The form of business has changed with creating a lot more of possibility of creation of new jobs.
Let us not forget the allegations towards these networking. Parents are complaining that the pupils are stick to computer, and doing lesser physical activities. Few studies have shown that kids with too much of time on net finds real world boring, whereas the virtual world the things happens faster. They start off and end relationship on the click of the mouse. On the other hand, few kids are sharp enough to start their own business and also not shy with complete strangers.
Shadowy identities have been created and a person pretends to be the one they are not. But with the gradual shift towards web2.0 sites are more about extending the real identity or names. So with real people develops real relationship. Isn’t it is great that people don’t get time to call others but at the same time everyone can be able to get updated about the others. Just update own site and follow the others. People now don’t forget the birthdays. 
The topic is relatively new and lot to be there to study about the socializing behaviour of people in new era. At the same time, it is doubtless that everyone enjoys socializing.
Happy Socializing!!!