Saturday, 30 April 2011

Social on Mobile - The Next Wave in Communications or Revolutions?

These are Social & Mobile REVOLUTIONS that cause Revolutions

This post takes inspiration from where where my earlier post left off

There are two 'new' frontiers in the world of communications today - Mobile and Social, these two spaces are primarily a continuum and the overlap,

While the former  is receiving a huge amount of  public attention both solicited and unsolicited with the 2G Scam, and other skeletons crawling out of the woodwork. It is the impact of Social that is seen on the Regimes in the Middle East, starting with the Story of a Tunisian fruitseller, to the fall of the Egyptian & Libyan  Dictators, to the Rise of Anna Hazare.

"You can buy my hands, but have to WIN my heart" seems to be the dictum of today's youth, and to win it is difficult to say the least.

With the pace of change increasing exponentially, what took microsoft 20 years to accomplish, took google 10 and facebook about 3 years.

When seen in the light of my ealier post "Is it a Bird? Is it a Plane? Noooo! It’s a CELLPHONE!" - and the fact that our mobile phones today have as more computing power than Yuri Gagarin's Space Ship!

How many people would have been able to predict  or foresee such leaps in science & technology, such revolutions?

Do your reach for your phone or paper first thing in the morning?

Like our parents waited eagerly for their morning fix of  coffee & newspaper (to the point that most of you would recall the withdrawal and how uneasy they felt when the paper didn't arrive on time!)

Today youth don't wait for the newspaper to get the news, the first thing they reach for is their smartphone to read the latest tweets - Tweets & RSS Feeds are replacing print for today's youth.

As discussed earlier  The Paradigm Shift from the Ear to the Eye, the mobile phone basic functionality is now visual rather than auditory  - The Twitter Stream, The Facebook Update, The YouTube Video are the New HEADLINES - personalized, customized and delivered in Real Time.

Traditional Media like TV programmes today have have twitter id's (@thenewshour, @face_the_nation), Print publications have online editions  (,  E-Paper editions and RSS feeds, Radio programmes run facebook contests & campaigns.

The psyche of the youth is so ingrained with Social Media, so pervasive is this technology, that Scientific Studies have actually  found that Youngsters feel disoriented, when they are disconnected  (withdawal akin to dad's morning grumblings when the paper didn't come ;-)

This obviously can not be a good thing... or can it?

The impact of Social Media is seen on the Regimes in the Middle East & Asia, starting with the Story of a Tunisian fruitseller, to the fall of the Egyptian & Libyan  Dictators, to the Rise of Anna Hazare.

"When I first saw that he was getting in, I thought, 'Well, this has got to be a joke,'" the Boone-based evangelist told ABC's Christiane Amanpour. "But the more you listen to him, the more you say to yourself, 'You know? Maybe the guy's right.' -  Franklin Graham

Saturday, 9 April 2011

When the Cure causes the Disease - Antibiotics

‘The trouble with being a hypochondriac these days is that antibiotics have cured all the good diseases.’ - Caskie Stinnett

Antibiotics were called the ‘miracle drug’ in the 1940s, and are the cure-all of virtually any infectious disease.
However, Antibiotics are effective only on infections caused by bacteria, not viruses. While certain fungi and parasites may be susceptible to certain antibiotics, specific anti-fungals and anti-parasitic agents are needed for their treatment.

Antibiotics STILL considered by many to be the ‘one stop cure’ for all ailments. There is a tendency to pop them the moment someone sneezes, coughs or complains of a fever. While antibiotics are potent fighters of infection, if used indiscriminately, they can actually endanger health.

The myths mentioned below  have been perpetuated and the indiscriminate use of antibiotics has led to the Emergence of "The Super Bug"(1)
NDM-1 Superbug Mutation Shows Up in New Delhi Drinking Water - "The gene mutation, New Delhi metallo-beta-lactamase 1 (or NDM-1), was identified in 11 distinct bacterial species, including those that cause cholera and dysentery, researchers from the University of Cardiff reported Thursday in the journal The Lancet Infectious Diseases." (2)

Myth: Once the symptoms subside the prescribed antibiotics can be stopped.(3)
Fact: Antibiotics should be taken as ordered by the doctor. Failure to do so can cause reinfection or emergence of ‘superbugs’, bacteria resistant to antibiotics. These are more deadly and –even more difficult to overcome.

Myth: Antibiotic resistance is a myth.
Fact: The problem of bacteria becoming resistant to antibiotics is very real. When prescribed antibiotics are discontinued before completion of the ‘course’ or used indiscriminately, few bacteria survive the treatment. These virulent bacteria can result in the formation of a ‘superstrain’ resistant to antibiotics. One such strain is the MRSA or the methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, which can cause devastating infections.

Myth: It is a good idea to use antibiotics as preventative measures against some infections, say while traveling. 
Fact: Antibiotics should not be taken unless ill. Use of antibiotics when they are not needed can be harmful. They can wipe out the body’s natural flora making the body more susceptible to infection. Certain bacteria develop resistance to antibiotics over time and can cause more problems. However, in certain situations doctors recommend antibiotic prophylaxis for e.g. dental procedures, gastrointestinal procedures, pneumocystis, etc.

Myth: Antibiotics should be stocked up in case there is a shortage when you get sick.
Fact: Certain outbreaks in the recent past like bird flu have caused individuals to consider stocking up on antibiotics. While the antibiotics could be helpful in certain situations, they would not be of use in case of viral infections. Storing antibiotics beyond their expiry date results in reduced potency. Also the use of antibiotics past there expiration date can cause organ damage.

Myth: Antibiotics help get over colds or flu.
Fact: Antibiotics only kill bacteria and then not every antibiotic is effective against every strain of bacteria. Viruses are responsible for colds and flu that are unaffected by antibiotics. Doctors tend to prescribe antibiotics in deference to their patients’ wishes; this is to be avoided as the problem of development of bacteria resistant to antibiotics is on the increase.

Myth: Antibiotics will help to get better faster.
Fact: The antibiotics taken for colds and flu do not get rid of bothersome symptoms faster. Whether the antibiotics are taken or not, these illnesses take their toll and take their time to clear up. Use of antibiotics should not be on a ‘just in case’ basis.

Myth: Antibiotics help the immune system to fight colds and flu.
Fact: Antibiotics only kill bacteria, they do not strengthen the immune system. Quite often individuals attribute the antibiotic as responsible for overcoming the infection, while in fact it is the immune system that did all the work and the virus just ran its course.

Myth: Fever always requires antibiotics.
Fact: Fever is a part of the body’s defense mechanism against infection. Even a virus infection can cause can cause a fever. Antibiotics are not warranted in every fever.

Myth: Antibiotics always win the battle against bacteria.
Fact: Bacteria are quickly becoming smarter and quicker. The drug companies are not able to invent antibiotics to keep up with them. So while antibiotics are life-savers when used correctly, indiscriminate use can reduce their effectiveness.

Share and save lives!

Thank you for Reading :)

Sources: -
Wikipedia (1)
Time HealthLand (2) 
Times Wellness (3) 

Monday, 4 April 2011

McKinsey Hacked! (April Fools' Day???)

McKinsey recognized the world's "most powerful consulting firm", (elitist by design) falls victim to the whims of lowly hackers

Here's an email i recieved from "The most well-known, most secretive, most high-priced, most prestigious, most consistently successful, most envied, most trusted, most disliked management consulting firm on earth"

from McKinsey Quarterly 
date Sat, Apr 2, 2011 at 8:51 PM
subject Important information from McKinsey Quarterly
> Important mainly because of the people in the conversation.
Apr 2 (1 day ago)
McKinsey Quarterly

Important information from McKinsey Quarterly
We have been informed by our e-mail service provider, Epsilon, that your e-mail address was exposed by unauthorized entry into their system. Epsilon sends e-mails on our behalf to McKinsey Quarterly users who have opted to receive e-mail communications from us.
We have been assured by Epsilon that the only information that was obtained was your first name, last name and e-mail address and that the files that were accessed did not include any other information. We are actively working to confirm this. We do not store any credit card numbers, social security numbers, or other personally identifiable information of our users, so we can assure you that no such information was accessed.
Please note, it is possible you may receive spam e-mail messages as a result. We want to urge you to be cautious when opening links or attachments from unknown third parties. Also know that McKinsey Quarterlywill not send you e-mails asking for your credit card number, social security number or other personally identifiable information. So if you are ever asked for this information, you can be confident it is not from McKinsey.
We regret this has taken place and apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused you. We take your privacy very seriously, and we will continue to work diligently to protect your personal information.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact McKinsey Quarterly at For any media inquiries, please contact Humphrey Rolleston at +1-212-415-5321.
Rik Kirkland
Senior Managing Editor
McKinsey & Company

(As it is dated 02 April 2011...  had me wondering are they playing me for April's Fool?)