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Happened to see this youtube link, through a Facebook feed. Not sure how credible the information is, but interesting corner point. No harm in listening to an alternate view. Who knows, is it the truth or is it just another conspiracy?

Qaddafi for sure has done several horrible stuffs and no way a man to be worshiped, but the way he was publicly assassinated portray a sorry figure to civilized society. It is appalling that NATO had the freedom to do such barbaric acts to curt the end of another man who was criticized for similar acts to his own people.

Another stalwart, the founding father of Unix, C and in many ways one of the founding fathers of computing itself, Dennis Ritchie passed away. For me, Ritchie along with Kernigham was one of the first few names registered in mind, since learning computer programming. The first book I have ever seen on a programming language is this duo’s book on C. And boy wasn’t that most concise book in technology, every so compact and yet rich and clean!

Come to think of it, the impact of Ritchie to modern science and technology is enormous. He may not have been a very public figure, but his contributions indeed is the touchstone on the modern world, especially the information network world. Much of the internet, the Google, the iPhone’s and what more, almost everything we can think of runs on his stuffs or its variants. Quite remarkable.

I think the most apt summary of Ritchie’s contribution is heard from Brian Kernighan himself.  He said  “The tools that Dennis built -and their direct descendants – run pretty much everything today”

 

A Facebook feed (through a friend) led me to this nice article on Sachin Tendulkar. The title is “Point to Cover” and the author is Senantix. I liked the Bayesian view of Tendulkar’s performance. Quite simply true. Often, the short memory and incorrect assumptions lead to most of the controversies and criticisms against Tendulkar. As they say, Bayesian can never go wrong!

P(Sachin fails| crisis) = [P(crisis|Sachin fails) x P(Sachin fails)]/[P(crisis|Sachin fails)xP(Sachin fails)+P(crisis|Sachin does not fail)xP(Sachin does not fail)]

We all knew that this will be inevitable, but all of us were hoping that it will be delayed as much as possible. Sadly, that day we all feared has finally come and it was today. Steve Jobs, the ever so mercurial leader of our industry has finally lost his battle with cancer and passed away this evening. Thousands of pages have been written about him and on his contributions. More will follow in days to come as well, from every corner of this planet. Let me not go there. To me, he has been a symbol of a child who always followed his dream and to top it up, he had the trust and ability to see it through. People may say, he is not philanthropic, but that is not his title, nor did he claim to be one. What he showed us is that, it is what “you decide”, what you want to become and it is entirely up to you to follow it tirelessly and achieve it. That’s it, no more no less.  What others think and say is completely irrelevant, as long as you put the trust honestly into your mind.

Come to think of it, his life and work and the glory associated with the making of one of the largest valued company in the world all have a charm and special persona associated with. His 2005 Stanford commencement speech made him immortal and inspirational to wider circle of life all over the world. More than being a tech whizkid, he was a symbol of innovation. More than a manager or a programmer, where he stays above the rest is the clarity in product vision and leadership to drive it through. I have heard several stories from my friends and comrades on his passion to drive stuffs at all cost and at times at the risk of spoiling personal relationships. That single minded drive to realize something special everyday made him this special. More often than not, we could see the sense of honesty in every statements he made, whether it is in public forums or in personal remarks at interviews. No tantrums and no diplomacy hanging around, plain simple truth in blunt words.

The world has lost a leader, visionary and innovator. He did not invent a medicine for cancer or aids, but he had made many a mark in the lives of thousands of people around the world. For some, he was the man who championed behind the realization of many amazing products of everyday use (Myself a huge beneficiary of it directly and indirectly!) and for others, his life itself serves as a message to follow their own dreams and then enjoy a lovely and satisfying life.  Thank you Steve Jobs. You have made a stamp in many lives.

While driving back home this evening on  a dark and rainy day I had the Stanford speech in mind. My mind seem to have said. Thank you sir. The words “Stay hungry, Stay foolish” reverberated on. Immortal words! Along the same bay he is resting at peace!

Footnote: CNN money had this report published sometime ago. The level of scaling Apple achieved under his rein since the beginning of this century is stunning.

Courtesy: From CNN money report (See the link above)

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