Letters To The Editor
Date: Saturday , January 01, 2000
On receiving my latest copy of siliconindia, I was immediately struck by your large-type comment on the cover page: "IT'S NOT ABOUT MONEY." The editorial reiterates this point and provides the answer: "It is the thrill of converting ideas into reality." This same point is made, once again, in the centerfold, which also indicated that it is "the romance of building companies."
Hogwash! On page 47 of your very own magazine, in an advertisement for siliconindia, you get down to the truth of the matter in your list of things to do: "wake up, shower, get job with a startup, work hard, go public and buy a jaguar for twenty-sixth birthday." This certainly conflicts with the noble ideas expressed in your own editorial and in the centerfold.
It is also interesting that the January 2000 issue of Red Herring, on its cover, says "Silicon Valley used to care more about innovation than getting rich. No longer." This is followed by an article which concludes that "An obsession with the instant gratification of easy wealth is hurting the high-tech industry."
It would be a mistake to conclude that this illustrates the difference in values between us Indians and native-born US types. In the last five years, I have met many Indians whose social conversation is limited to bragging about their investments, their SUVs and their second Mercedes cars.
I am afraid that easy money makes pigs of us all, without regard to race or creed. It is an Equal Opportunity Issue.
S.K. Ghandhi, Emeritus Professor, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, NY
NO CHALLENGE TOO BIG
I was particularly drawn to the article "The Indian Century" (siliconindia, November), in which the author has brought out very cogently the salient achievements of India in the twentieth century in the fields of politics, society, science and technology, business and economics, and arts and music.
The author feels (and I agree with him) that Indians are capable of accepting any challenge in any field. It is gratifying to know that the Center for Advanced Computing could develop the Param 10,000 -- probably the most powerful machine of its kind -- which can meet India's high-end computing needs. Any Indian would feel proud of the fact that Einstein sought collaboration with Satyendra Nath Bose, which resulted in Bose-Einstein Statistics.
We hope in some future article siliconindia will bring out India's contribution in the fields of yoga, spirituality and religion, and other fields.
Dr. Jag Deva Singh, Columbus, Ohio
A DHARMIC STAGE
"Leadership for the next millennium," (siliconindia, December), by Sudhir Chadalvada, was an excellent article. Throughout the last decade there has been increasing awareness amongst Indian executives to make significant contributions to research in management science. We proudly say that India's contribution to mathematics is zero; while we have potential to contribute infinity. I am delighted by your optimism expressed in the concluding paragraph.
I hope these key Indian employees attain dharmic stage and understand notion of "spirituality at the place of work." I am sure that there will be more such articles appearing in siliconindia that will elaborate on how to attain the "dharmic" stage, with some case studies.
VISION FOR INDIA
Though I had known about Sam Pitroda's works, vision and contribution to our country, it was only recently that I read your article "Making Meaningful Contributions."
The content development idea particularly on use of solar energy by poor people excites me. Solar cookers somehow have not caught on, even in middle-class families.
There are no electronic-artificial arm manufactured in India for the war casualty soldiers. May I suggest that some NRI be encouraged to develop the content for this on the Net.
Likewise, computer experts in India may collate and publish the software available in the US for deaf, dumb, or blind children and also mentally retarded children.
Brig Sivam, Bangalore
TO THE POINT
When I read Sam Pitroda's article in siliconindia, I feel many times we from India do not say what we mean and just do not mean what we say. Is this because we do not know how to say it and how to be direct in a positive way? Sometimes we try to save the feelings of the other guy.
For some reason, very few of us from India have that skill -- and many like me learn as we get old. Once I knew how to say it positively and be direct and not to worry about feelings to the extent that I kill the communication, I think I do good.
Maybe you can suggest ways for people to learn some of techniques/ words/skills to say and be direct and to come to the point without wasting time.
Apropos Ashwini Khanna's letter (siliconindia, December), on Kanwal Rekhi's article "Obligation, Not Charity," is really amusing!
"Motherland," "Our nation," "Our beloved country"… these are beautiful words and they are much like "Motherhood," and "Apple pie."
Kanwal is a good friend of the Indo-American community and a fabulous human being. He did not run down anything or anybody. He told it like it is; self-criticism is a real virtue.
By being a critic, Kanwal made the readers think on the positives he suggested. By being a critic, Kanwal was not being negative towards India or Indians, rather he tries by his article to make the readers think on the positives he suggests.
Indians are a heterogeneous people and they discriminate among themselves up to their genetic level. All Kanwal did was to make a few pointers for thought with the hope that some good may emerge.
Ray Vrudhula, Texas