Archive for August, 2003

Linux makes deep roots into high performance

August 31, 2003

Linux continues to make inroads into high performance. It has less to do with
free availability and more to do with an ability to modify. It may NOT reduce
cost but increases flexibility

Virus attack

August 28, 2003

Last week the whole world was wasting time fixing the problems associated with
Blaster & Sobig virus. Viruses are no longer irritants; they waste enormous
resources on a global scale. It is time that the infrastructure providers
(networks, operting systems, database, and middleware) join together and
create an “IT “building” code”, the way “fire code” is prepared for buildings
and get it administered by “independent” agencies. That will be the only
“lasting” solution to this endemic disease.

(My views expressed in the talk “Security – A Consultant’s View” at
Symantec Partner Meet 2003 at Marriott Hotel, Dubai on August
, 2003)

Intel announces $ 375 M Packaging Plant in Chinese hinterland

August 27, 2003

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> New Packaging Plant In China > August 27, 2003

Concerns that Indian IT industry must address to grow to $ 80 Billion

August 8, 2003

McKinsey projected a $ 80 Billion oppportunity for the Indian IT industry by
year 2008. This is fairly achievable from the demand side but the supply side
concerns must be addressed. India’s USP is what I call “Big E
(denoting English language proficienc of Indian IT professional & “Small
” (entrepreneurship attribute) and “Big Q” (quantity of IT
engineers) & “Small Q” (quality of Indian IT professionals). While we
are doing OK on “Big E” and “Big Q” (with 35,000 engineers produced per year
there are million students in the 4-year engineering degree program at any
time), we need to address the quality factor (“small E”); except a handful of
Institutes (IIT’s and a few IIIT’s) the quality is far from “world-class”;
similarly the entrepreneurial spirit must be nurtured, supported and
grown. Once these are done, India can easily hit $ 80 Billion target and even
surpass it. These are areas where Stanford University with its outstanding
technical education and a culture of entrepreneurship
can help

(My views expressed in the panel discussion at Stanford ATI (Asian
Technology Initiative) held at Infosys Campus on August 7, 2003)

Indian IT industry must move all over value chain, just not move up the

August 7, 2003

It has been fashionable these days to talk of “moving up the value chain”; as
a corollary, we criticise the spectacular achievement of the software industry
as mere “body shopping”. In the same vein, we talk derisively of call centres,
BPO and other support operations. We might end up doing a lot of damage to
the nation
. We must NOT forget that a country with billion people needs
million jobs
. There are only a few jobs in the high end of the chain; the
maximum number of jobs are in the low end. Why should we give them away to
China, Philippines or Russia?
We need to get the designing, prototyping,
consulting jobs no doubt (which we are immensely capable of); at the same time
we should keep up our programming jobs, BPO jobs; we should even create more
basic supportive jobs, logistics, courier, food supply, drivers..that support
IT indutry; all of them constitute a great eco-system. All those “menial” jobs
must be elevated, better paying, more respectable and less tiring for those
who perform it.

(My views expressed in the keynote speech given at Texas Instruments India
7th Technical Conference, Bangalore
on August 7, 2003)

Jobs will move to India; will we keep them?

August 6, 2003

In spite of resistance from US politicians and those afftecd (as per ABC News
item that was aired all over USA on 30th July 2003, that I watched while
attending Microsoft Research Faculty Summit in Seattle, USA), jobs will move
to India over the next five years. As some one observed the centre of
gravity of software industry will move from United States to India
. But
the challenge to India is to keep them. Jobs move because we are cost
efficient; if we do not keep a tab on cost and get into bad habits, cost will
rise cutting out our advantage; also, in our feeverish expansion of the supply
side we might dramatically bring down the quality of our people which might
jeopardize our chances. These are concerns we must address carefully; else
the jobs will move out of India at a rate faster than the rate at which they
came into India.

SCO gets back in its own coin

August 5, 2003

The legal wrangle over Linux started when SCO sued IBM for a billion dollar
and sent letters to 1500 CEO’s alleging that use of Linux might give IP
violation related headaches. Now SCO gets sued by Red Hat alleging that its
earlier suit lacks substance and only creates confusion in open source
community – sort of getting back in its own coin! I wish the controversy ends

Craig Mundie – changing face of Microsoft

August 4, 2003

The CTO of Microsoft Craig Mundie (former founder of super computer
firm Alliant Computer Systems) represents the maturity that Microsoft as a
computer company is undergoing. He listens; admits the role of open systems,
if not open source software; and talk of responsible industry leadership.
Economist in its July 26, 2003 issue calls him “Colin Powell to
George Bush so Craig Mundie to Bill Gates
” – interesting indeed!

Universities as ideal organization

August 3, 2003

In the July issue of Harvard Business Review Lawrence Summers,
President, Harvard University
(and earlier Treasury Secretary of the US
Government) had suggested that corporate sector should learn a leaf from the
“open, hierarchy-free” structure of Universities (such as Harvard) to build
enduring organizations.

Jobs, Jobs and Jobs – moving from USA

August 2, 2003

These days too much is made about the jobs moving from USA to India – partly
fact and partly fiction. The way ABC News on 30th evening portraying an
American worker going to Bangalore to train six Indians and immediately losing
his job does create a bad taste. Any human being in the place of the American
worker would send a strong negative signal. It is time the Indian IT industry
take effort and project the story in right perspective. Jobs are not moving
to India – they are moving to cheaper location – to help America save cost.
In the long run it will do good to America provided Americans in their
uncanny ability innovate and create more paying jobs (they had done it many
times over earlier)