Category: Tid-bits on Tuesday


A Costly Affair?!

US President Barrack Obama will be visiting India and spending or rather should I say “celebrating”  Diwali with us! Although I am quite inquisitive as to what is his agenda will be, however I was quite taken aback after I happened to hear the “huge costs” involved in his stay!

A rough estimate says that his trip to our national capital, New Delhi, costs close to INR 15,00,000 per Hour!!! His security staff has booked all 440 rooms of a luxurious 5 star hotel from November 5 till the president’s departure. In addition, official sources say, more rooms have been booked in other luxury hotels, including a neighbouring hotel of the same class!

Just his two-day stay at one of the hotels will cost anywhere between Rs 1.2 crore and Rs 1.8 crore per day. 

Obama is touted to bring one of the largest contingents which also includes his personal chefs,security staff,technicians,advisors,businessmen and other officials from his government!

This will be his first ever visit to India, as far as I know, since he became the President, who has come under severe criticism for his “lack of doing anything” for the US. In my opinion news about his vacation plans and photos or his visits to deli’s or cafe’s are making headlines more than his efforts taken! Although I do have to admit that, when he adopted Presidency the economy had already taken a big hit, so it was only natural that you cannot expect overnight measures to be taken by him to reapir them! Nevertheless, Politics is like a rubics cube! Unless and until you reach the “perfect combination” you simply cannot move!

Meaning only if everyone “agrees” on any policy, say the Healthcare Policy, he can implement them, otherwise it will just lay there collecting grime or just being tossed around!

Anyways, I will definitely update my readers about the happenings from Obama’s visit soon. Until then, Happy Blogging!

Hello my dear readers, if there are any???

Apologize for the quite a long delay in not updating anything over the past few days. Been busy with work and festivities all around me. Ate too much like an Anaconda that my head just didn’t stay in place and constantly longed for the pillow, which ultimately it did manage to get, He he..

Anyways, as for today, I do want to share with you the story about a start-up, Innocent Drinks, UK. Has anyone heard about it?

Well, although am not in the Uk but quite associated with it in a way(I cover Uk news happenings for MAARS News!) so I decided to share an interview that I happened to watch over the weekend on the BBC.

“Richard Reed,the founder of UK company Innocent Drinks describes how he and three university friends took their business venture from idea to reality.

Richard Reed founded Innocent in 1998 with two friends from Cambridge University, Adam Balon and Jon Wright.

When they left university they all got jobs with blue-chip companies – one went into advertising and two went into management consultancy. But that didn’t stop them constantly talking about setting up a business – a conversation they’d been having since their student days.

Four years later they quit their jobs and decided to go into business after getting back from snowboarding holiday where they’d done nothing but talk about their desire to become entrepreneurs.

They decided to set up a business which would appeal to people like them – so they fixed on the theme of doing good to themselves. The result was Innocent, a drinks company producing pure fruit smoothies. The company now produces more than 30 different recipes and sells more than two million smoothies each week through 10,000 retailers in the UK and overseas.

Since Innocent was launched the company has been growing by 20 per cent year on year and currently has a 75 per cent share of the smoothie market. In April 2009 Coca-Cola bought an 18 per cent stake in the company for £30 million. A year later it paid £65 million for a 58 per cent stake.” (Interview taken from BBC.) You can also go to the BBC website for the main video interview.

It was definitely inspiring and their corporate culture is really cool and laid back, that it definitely tempts me to take a swig of their smoothies. Well, that is not possible since am not in or from the UK. No matter, I did learn quite a lot from the interview –  in terms of things  like try and try again, perseverance and hard work will pay,etc..

For more info on the company this is the site, http://www.innocentdrinks.co.uk/us/?Page=our_story

Until next time, will catch you with another post – that you can decide whether its interesting or mundane!

Last week had been an eventful week for ideologists,scientists,economists,philosophers,etc.. around the world, as the Annual Nobel Prizes were announced for this year 2010. The list is as follows:

Nobel Medal, registered trademark of the Nobel Foundation. Photo: Lina Göransson

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2010 was awarded jointly to Andre Geim and Konstantin Novoselov “for groundbreaking experiments regarding the two-dimensional material graphene”

The Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2010 was awarded jointly to Richard F. Heck, Ei-ichi Negishi and Akira Suzuki “for palladium-catalyzed cross couplings in organic synthesis”.

The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2010 was awarded to Robert G. Edwards “for the development of in vitro fertilization”.

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2010 was awarded to Mario Vargas Llosa “for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual’s resistance, revolt, and defeat”.

The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 2010 was awarded jointly to Peter A. Diamond, Dale T. Mortensen and Christopher A. Pissarides “for their analysis of markets with search frictions”.

The Nobel Peace Prize 2010 was awarded to Liu Xiaobo “for his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China”.

Some Intersting Facts about the Nobel Prize:

On 27 November 1895, Alfred Nobel signed his last will and testament, giving the largest share of his fortune to a series of prizes in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine, Literature and Peace – the Nobel Prizes. In 1968, Sveriges Riksbank (Sweden’s central bank) established The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel.

237 names were submitted for the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize, 38 of which are organizations. The Nobel Committees in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine, Literature and the Prize Committee for Economic Sciences each usually receives 250-300 names every year, but this is the highest number of nominations for the Nobel Peace Prize ever. The names of the nominees cannot be revealed until 50 years later.

The highlight of the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony in Stockholm is when each Nobel Laureate steps forward to receive the Nobel Prize from the hands of His Majesty the King of Sweden. In Oslo, the Chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee presents the Nobel Peace Prize in the presence of the King of Norway. Under the eyes of a watching world, the Nobel Laureate receives three things: a diploma, a medal and a document confirming the prize amount.

Each Nobel Diploma is a unique work of art, created by foremost Swedish and Norwegian artists and calligraphers. The Literature diploma is written in parchment reminiscent of those used by medieval book illustrators. The other diplomas use specially ordered hand-made paper.

The Nobel medals in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine and Literature are identical on the face: it shows the image of Alfred Nobel and the years of his birth and death (1833-1896). Nobel’s portrait also appears on the Nobel Peace Prize Medal and the Medal for the Prize in Economic Sciences, but with a slightly different design. The image on the reverse varies according to the institution awarding the prize. All medals made before 1980 were struck in 23 carat gold. Today, they are made from 18 carat green gold plated with 24 carat gold.

The Nobel Prize for 2009 was SEK 10 million (over USD 1 million) per full Nobel Prize. Until 1968, in principle more than three persons could share a Nobel Prize, but this never happened in practice. The previous wording of paragraph 4 of the Statutes governing the Nobel Prize was: “A prize may be equally divided between two works, each of which may be considered to merit a prize. If a work which is to be rewarded has been produced by two or more persons together, the prize shall be awarded to them jointly.” In 1968 this section was changed to read “In no case may a prize be divided between more than three persons”.

 I do congratulate all the prize winners for their efforts. However, I do have to ask as to how do the Nobel Prize Awarding Committee select candidates for the various categories and ultimately , how do they decide upon the winner? If any of the readers can throw light on this issue, it would be great.

On the other hand, I do also have to admit, that most of the winners are basically forgotten and not even remembered enough, either before or after they get the award.  With boiling tensions over the Nobel Peace Prize for this year, it still remains uncertain whether China will send the imprisoned receptor, despite worldwide pressure.

Apart from the awards of intellectual finesse, we also witnessed sporting glory in Delhi, in the form of various athletes, raking in the medals for their countries. India too on its part, is busy in scripting glory, as of today it has won 32 Gold Medals, in various sports including recent additions like athletics, archery,etc.. and expecting more medals in Badminton or Hockey. Am very proud of my nation that it is showing its prowess and grit in sports. Go INDIA Go!!!

A brief History about The Commonwealth Games:

The Commonwealth Games is an international, multi-sport event involving athletes from the Commonwealth of Nations.

As well as many Olympic sports, the Games also include some sports that are played mainly in Commonwealth countries, such as lawn bowls, rugby sevens and netball. The Games are overseen by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), which also controls the sporting programme and selects the host cities. The host city is selected from across the Commonwealth, with eighteen cities in seven countries having hosted it.

The event was first held in 1930 under the title of the British Empire Games in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. The event was renamed as the British Empire and Commonwealth Games in 1954, the British Commonwealth Games in 1970, and gained its current title in 1978. Only six teams have attended every Commonwealth Games: Australia, Canada, England, New Zealand, Scotland and Wales. Australia has been the highest achieving team for ten games, England for seven and Canada for one.

There are currently 54 members of the Commonwealth of Nations, and 71 teams participate in the Games. The four Home Nations of the United Kingdom – England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – send separate teams to the Commonwealth Games, and individual teams are also sent from the British Crown dependencies of Guernsey, Jersey and the Isle of Man (unlike at the Olympic Games, where the combined “Great Britain” team represents all four home nations and the Crown dependencies). Many of the British overseas territories also send their own teams. The Australian external territory of Norfolk Island also sends its own team, as do the Cook Islands and Niue, two states in free association with New Zealand. It was reported that Tokelau, another dependency of New Zealand would be sending a team to the 2010 Games in New Delhi, India. In the end however they did not.

So until next time, Happy Blogging…

I would like to share with you two websites that I happened to find on the net, that I felt might be useful for all of us in general.

http://www.enigmai.com/

Managers looking for a more convenient way to look after their employees are sure to find this site worth their time. Enigmai is an application that works on the browser, and which can be used for free.

Some of the tasks that it can perform include managing both time and attendance for all the people that are on a company’s roster, and also manage the way they actually work in a bid to take productivity higher.

Also, the fact that all the schedules become available online just simplifies everything to no end both to employers and employees. The latter can confirm their availability at a mere click, and to all intents and purposes choose when they are working and when they are going to take a leave.

For its part, managers have access to detailed reports that showcase who has worked and when, in a way that is easy to be understood and printer-friendly. Tracking who is working harder has never been this instant.

http://www.benderconverter.com/

Bender Converter is a new Internet tool that can be used to download any video you find online, and have it converted into the format that best suits your requirements. Need to turn a presentation into a file that can be reproduced on your mobile so that you can study it more thoroughly, and make the best of the time you are commuting? Need to convert a YouTube video into a format that could be reproduced using an archaic computer? Well, Bender Converter is sure to help you out in both cases.
All the main video sites of the day are actively supported. These include not only websites such as YouTube, Daily Motion, Mega Video, Vimeo and Google Video but also a site like TwitVid.

Using  Bender Converter is as simple as specifying the link where the clip to be converted is found, choosing an output format from the several ones that are available, and then saving the resulting file on your computer.

Hope these two sites are useful..  Until next time.. Happy Blogging!!!

As a bright new day dawned, I usually start my day by reading the newspaper. Sort of became a habit that developed over the years, so as I was glancing through the news, I started to hear a feeble voice from somewhere.. As my parents were busy with their chores, I dismissed the idea that, maybe my mum had called me for something. Yet, I kept hearing this “strange voice” still. Maybe I was dreaming still, so pinched myself to see if I was still awake.. OUCH! Yup, was still awake, then I just fell of my bed after I found out that it was the “Paper” that was talking..

It was new marketing strategy that German Car manufacturer, Volkswagen, had adopted to promote their new car “Vento”, in India. A small speaker was attached to the paper accompanied by a full page ad, describing the product.

Volkswagen-Full page advertisement

 

I have to say that I was certainly impressed with their strategy, as no one for sure would have heard a NEWSPAPER talk!!! Kudos, Bravo, Well Done, Volkswagen for their innovative marketing strategy!!! Its not an easy task to add speakers to around a million copies of the mostly wide read national daily, here in India. I am pretty sure that it will prove to be a really good investment and eventually better returns and profits at a later stage.

The Speaker

HOWEVER, MAYBE IF ANYONE FROM THE VOLKSWAGEN IS READING, IT WOULD ALSO BE NIC EIF YOU COULD REDUCE THE PRICES, APART FROM THIS LATEST MARKETING GIMMICK!!! THANKS!! 😉

Have attached pictures that I took from my mobile phone for your referrence. Apologize for the clarity and quality, if bad!!

And finally I would also like to thank all those who have been reading and also making an effort to comment on my blog. My blog has recorded over a 100 hits, as of yesterday, just withind a 3 week margin when I started…:)

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