Indian Manufacturing BPO

Ever since being introduced to the Indian blogging scene, there are a few prominent blogs I make it a point to read, Indra’s Drishtikona being one. Thanks to Pankaj for directing me to this insightful commentary on India’s affairs. While going through the blog’s archives, I stumbled across this post – Why SEMCO can’t be repeated? (I am sure he meant to ask “Why can’t SEMCO be repeated?”).
Yes, it is a pleasing feeling to see there is an industry that can be called an “Indian BPO in manufacturing”. When “Made in China” has become an ubiquitous engraving on everything from computers to lawn mowers, it is nice to see “Made in India” written on stuff other than shirts and handbags. And what pleased me more was the fact that I have had a chance to meet the man behind this venture. I met SEMCO India’s CEO in Baltimore last year, had a chance to talk to him on various issues, and I was bowled over just like Subroto Bagchi of Business India was.
I join Indra in wishing that many others join SEMCO’s class.


Hurricane Babies

This morning I saw a report on Hurricane Babies, about how exactly 9 months after last year’s hurricane in Florida and other areas, hospitals are experiencing 15-20% increase in baby births. I couldn’t find a link to the report on ABC’s site, but found a similar report on another site. This report also talks about a related expansion in one hospital’s facilities to take care of future toddlers.
In the aftermath of the hurricane, people were displaced from their homes, were put up in community centers, had to face power cuts, etc. So, with nothing else to do, what could they do – make babies, of course. Family after family was interviewed and they talked about the circumstances in which their babies were conceived. For some, the candles provided the romantic conditions needed.
This reminds me of an old joke about the population of a village exploding, due to a midnight train passing through the village every night and waking the adults up.
Now, what can you expect to happen in India, where for millions of families the hurricane- like conditions are a norm, candle-light dinners are a daily luxury, and trains pass their homes with much more frequency?


Birth pangs that des Pardes went through!

Since I have been using WordPress for a few months for my Hindi blog, I did not go through the problems that a new wordpress user would have gone through. On the other hand, set-up was a breeze because I was used to having to translate stuff to Hindi everytime I tried out a new theme on my Hindi blog, or did an upgrade. Also, typing in English is so easy as compared to typing in Hindi. Still, I went through the following problems, just in case you encounter them too:
1. Being the cheapstake that I am, I registered this domain when yahoo was selling domains for less than five bucks a year. They keep taking the deal off and on, though it is on as I am writing this. I bought webspace from shieldhost for about two bucks a month. That is what gave me some pain.
2. I am used to FTP stuff through Explorer (Win Explorer or IE). This doesn’t work with Shieldhost. So, I had to download and use WS_FTP.
3. I tried to set up subdomains, but even after doing everything right, it just won’t work. Finally I googled the problem and was told that I have to ask the host to do it manually for me. They don’t seem to say this anywhere on their site. But, well, I had to write a support ticket and thankfully they responded and acted within a few hours.
4. While trying to edit the presentation files through WordPress control panel, it said the file was not writable (this didn’t happen with my previous server), so I had to chmod 666 all the theme files.
5. I want to have pretty permalinks, but still have to figure out if I have .htaccess and how to make it rewritable.


Hello world!

Hello world! This is my first blog entry. The main, not sole, emphasis of my writings on this blog will be snippets from the US media, where India is covered, or mentioned, or in any way effected. Also, how as an Indian (read fob) I think about the happenings in the US and its news reporting. Most of my news comes from NPR, which I listen to on my commute to and from work, or from ABC’s Good Morning America which I watch while getting ready for office in the morning. Other than this I try to stay away from TV, and do not get to listen to a lot of radio.
Although this is my first English blog, I have been blogging in Hindi for the last six months. Most of my entries on this blog will also appear on my Hindi blog.