Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger

Would you pay millions to have a Buffett lunch? For more than 18 years, people have tried to outbid each other to have lunch with the Oracle of Omaha – Warren Buffett. This year the winning bidder shelled out $2.68 million for the privilege of having lunch with the man.

I have some good news for you. You can get the wisdom of Warren Buffet and his right hand man, Charlie Munger if you pick up the book titled “All I Want to Know is Where I’m Going to Die So I’ll Never Go There”. Yes, that is the title of the book. I was almost not going to read it. I thought it would be another compilation of financial mumbo jumbo and ratios. Then I read the subtitle. It says, “Buffett and Munger – A Study in Simplicity and Uncommon, Common Sense.” This a must-read.

Konkona Sen Sharma: Stories are made of fact, fiction and memory

Storytelling is a craft that has to be honed bit by bit. When we read a story that captures our imagination we can visualise it in our head. We create an image of the protagonist. Visuals have a way of becoming rigid and freezing. So very often when I see a movie that is based on a book that I have read, I am often disappointed.  What I seen the […]

What they do not tell you about class toppers

What they do not tell you about class toppers

If you were the top student of your class, does it mean that you will land up being the CEO? To answer this question, Karen Arnold, a researcher at Boston College, followed 81 high school toppers and those who were top of the class after they finished academics to track their progress. Are they doing well? Are they successful? Find out for yourself.

Who writes those forwards I get on WhatsApp

Who writes those forwards I get on WhatsApp

My problem is that I cannot remember if I have read the joke until I reach the punchline. It is only then resentment rises at the person who sent the joke that I have been receiving over the years. I sometimes believe that sending WhatsApp jokes to each other is a way of dealing with the future. That future when robots will do all our work leaving us jobless. Will we spend all our waking hours reading recycled jokes? Think of the kind of jobs we can create.

Algorithms: Are we giving up our right to choose

Algorithms: Are we giving up our right to choose

What would happen if a tobacco company or alcohol maker or drug dealer were to buy the app to encourage addiction? The fear is not far-fetched. E-commerce companies are using algorithmic nudges to encourages shoppers to buy more than what they need or can afford. The UK government is using behavioural scientists to get people to pay their taxes in time. What is to stop a totalitarian government from using algorithms for something sinister?

Just Post-It

Just Post-It

These yellow Post-It notes are an essential part of my life. I have used these yellow thingies to write welcome notes and bid goodbye. To share a word of appreciation for my team members. To say thank you for great work done. Several appraisals and many bosses later, my team members still have the fading thank you notes and cartoons on their desk.

The “Assisted Economy”

The "Assisted Economy"

Our cultural traditions have always had a place for a sidekick. Our folk theater has had a jamura who acts as a sidekick to the main performer or madaari. Without the jamura, the madaari’s show is incomplete. From royalty to musicians, there is always place for a sidekick. That may be an opportunity for India as tech becomes Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva in the pantheon of jobs.

When do we feel threatened by machines?

When do we feel threatened by machines?

When machines start doing our tasks, we hold them to standards that no human can match. We expect them to be perfect. Maybe we know that they are peering over our shoulder and learning to take over our lives. They better be perfect. That is the only way our lives will be perfect. But is it?

Brain Hack

Brain Hack

Today several people celebrated Teachers Day and acknowledge the role of the teachers in shaping their lives. Today’s post begins with a tip that encourages you to think like a teacher when you want to learn something… anything.

Seven decades of dreams

Seven decades of dreams

When the Olympic Games have been officially declared closed and everyone has gone home, the world begins to believe in a myth. The myth of limits. That it is not humanly possible to do it any better… ever. Somewhere, tucked away in obscurity there is someone who does not believe in any such limits. Someone is still practicing for years for a shot at being unreasonable.

Serendipity

Serendipity

I have discovered poetry and music in strange places because I got lost. I love wandering about aimlessly when I am in a new city. It was during one of those meanderings after dinner one night in Madrid that I discovered that some of the streets had some words engraved on the cobbled stones. A helpful resident of the neighborhood told me that they were the lines from the Spanish poet Becquer.

Why do we work?

Why do we work?

Do only the poor work for money? After all, I have seen even the highest paid employees bargain with clenched teeth about an amount that would be less than a percentage of their earning. When someone says, “It is not about the money, it is the principle of the thing that I care about”. You can bet that it is indeed only about the money. Or are we missing the point?