Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Not in my backyard

This phrase means usually that a person who supports a cause purportedly in public interest backs out when it affects him. This is also hypocracy. We have many examples to support the same.

Take the issue of stray dogs. This is a suburban problem but which is rare in the City. Hence we have a lot of South Mumbai animal lovers and NGO's campaigning and even filing writ petitions in the High Court(s) to protect animal rights. From an ethical stance(that all life is entitled to exist/ slippery slope arguement that will we stop at dogs or go to humans etc), they are probably correct. What fails me however, is that in SoBo(South Mumbai), there are virtually no stray dogs.Once people listen to the melody of the barks and fights, they may soon change their minds.

Another is patriotic causes like fighting corruption, standing up for the weak or joining the army/low paying Civil Service jobs. We pay lipservice but how many of us really would like a hazardous low paying army job even for prestige?

I can go on and on but the point is clear. Unless we think in the larger good atleast sometimes, nothing will happen.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

THEN(Is it so)-NOW(What is the probability it is so)

The above line; in the preface to "A First Course in probability"-6th edn by Sheldon Ross; got me thinking. When even light has dual nature(particle/wave), where we are not certain about the exact location of sub atomic particles(Heinsenburg's uncertainity principle), then how can we be certain about much less exact things?

Schools, Colleges and some extent work teach us that there is only 1 right thing. But where even "established theories" in any area(economics, finance, law, astronomy) get refuted, should we be so blaise about insisting on only 1 thing?

This no doubt helps standardization but does it really serve the objective? Instead of having 1 number, we should take a probability weighted number for that or better still, present the distribution instead of the number.

Back after a 3 yr hiatus

It feels good to be writing again on virtually anything under the sun. But that is what "Musings are for". I resolve to:-
(i)Post atleast once a week
(ii)Revise posts in case of new data/errors