In search of a dream: When India won independence 65 years ago, its leaders had a vision for the country’s future. In part, their dream was admirable and rare for Asia: liberal democracy. Thanks to them, Indians mostly enjoy the freedom to protest, speak up, vote, travel and pray however and wherever they want to; and those liberties have ensured that elected civilians, not generals, spies, religious leaders or self-selecting partymen, are in charge. If only their counterparts in China, Russia, Pakistan and beyond could say the same. Read the full column here.
Back to reforms: It had been a brutal August for the Congress party: economic growth was wilting, the monsoon rains were failing and the opposition had it cornered on yet another corruption scandal. Read how Sonia Gandhi, president of the Congress party, was persuaded to back reforms.
New new world
This is very clever: the NotFound project, a collaborative initiative from Missing Children Europe and Child Focus, wants to raise awareness for missing and sexually exploited children in Europe by asking participating website publishers turn their 404 error page real estate into notices. Full story here.
IFTTT: San Francisco Startup Lets Anyone Control The Internet of Things: To get to the office of one of San Francisco’s most innovative startups, you need to walk away from the gleaming promise of the financial district and toward the boarded-up failures of upper Market Street. You’ll be looking for a formerly abandoned building, and you’ll likely walk past the entrance a few times before you try a blank steel door next to a shuttered storefront.
Power, Pollution and the Internet: Jeff Rothschild’s machines at Facebook had a problem he knew he had to solve immediately. They were about to melt. The company had been packing a 40-by-60-foot rental space here with racks of computer servers that were needed to store and process information from members’ accounts. The electricity pouring into the computers was overheating Ethernet sockets and other crucial components. Read how they solved the crisis and more on power, pollution and the Internet.
How to find porn online? Stuart Lawley has chosen a strange mission for his company, ICM Registry: helping you find pornography online. Is this something for which sentient human beings require assistance? Do we need to say- read more here?
Who spends $52 mn for a website? Meet the Chinese: China’s Ministry of Railways (MOR) recently revamped its 12306.cn website for buying train tickets, but the project has widely been regarded as a colossal failure. That failure didn’t come cheap, either, as the government is said to have spent RMB 330 million ($52 million) developing the website. Read more here.
Facebook, Twitter Growth in China Has Lots of Caveats: A new report shows just how porous China’s infamous Great Firewall might be for local Internet users determined to access banned websites. The country’s censors have deemed Facebook (FB) and Twitter unfit for local viewing, but that hasn’t stopped millions of Chinese from using the social-networking services, according to London-based researcher GlobalWebIndex. Read the full story here.
A Close Reading of Two Apple Apologies : The announcement from Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook, in which he addressed dissatisfaction with Apple’s new Maps app in iOS 6, is not the first time Apple (AAPL) has apologized to its customers. The company gave free cases or rebates to iPhone customers during the “Antennagate” glitch in 2010 and issued $100 rebates to customers who bought the first iPhones in the summer of 2007, before Apple dropped the price by $200 only two months later, in September. Bloomberg Businessweek takes a close look at the two apologies.
A new way to go to jail: Man straps self with wires and gadgets, surprised to be arrested: A Georgia man claims all the gadgets and wires around his body are a style statement. He is arrested after people in a mall are alarmed. Read the full story.
Foxconn Plant Closed After Riot, Company Says: Foxconn Technology, a major supplier to some of the world’s electronics giants, including Apple, said it had closed one of its large Chinese plants Monday after the police were called in to break up a fight among factory employees. More here
‘AOL squatter‘ takes wraps off new startup, Claco: Remember the guy who lived off AOL to bootstrap his startup and was finally shown the door by the campus security? He’s launching his new startup. Find out more.
“Oh Kickstarter, is there anything you can’t do?”: Apparently not, given the supremely exciting level of participation in the Kickstarter effort for the LIFX, a WiFi-enabled, multi-colored, energy-efficient LED light bulb that you can control with your iPhone or Android phone. Read more about how the creators of the project raised more than a million dollars with 51 days to go. Read full story here.
32 Business and Life Lessons: An entrepreneurs personal story of how he went from having a job he did not like at all, not knowing what to do with his life to building several successful businesses. Read More.
You Can’t Be Half An Entrepreneur: I’m a big fan of the HBO show Boardwalk Empire. One of the famous quotes from the show is “You can’t be half a gangster.” That line was said by one character urging the other to start acting like a full gangster and use all the tools at his disposal (violence) to resolve issues in their illegal endeavors; otherwise they’ll both probably end up on the wrong side of a gun barrel, since their competitors will be acting like “full gangsters”. Writes Jai Bhatti in Business Insider.
Is Going for Rapid Growth Always Good? Aren’t Startups So Much More? I think I’ve read Paul Graham’s post on “Startup = Growth” three or four times now. And of course on Twitter I’ve seen the Tweets, ReTweets and superlatives on what a great post it is. Read more here.
Python 3.3.0 final release is out. This version includes a range of improvements of the 3.x series. Read more to know the major new features and changes in the 3.3 release.
Visualising data: Data visualisation enables us to learn from information. Jo Wood, a professor of visual analytics at City University London, found a terrific way to depict a vast amount of data in a neatly accessible way—plotting all the bicycle journeys taken by London’s municipal bike-sharing service in the first year of operation in 2010-11; some five million trips. The result is the magnificent video-graphic below. Read more here.
For the future of big data startups, look to Facebook: Facebook knows something about big data — it collects more data and has built more tools than almost anybody else. Here, Facebook’s Jay Parikh and Accel Partners’ Ping Li talk about what lessons big data startups can take from Facebook to build businesses that can succeed. Read the full story here.
Wireless Stadiums: The Next Best Thing to Not Being There: On Sunday, Sept. 16, the New England Patriots played their home opener at Gillette Stadium against the Arizona Cardinals, a team they were expected to rout. They did not. For the first three quarters, the home team’s offense bogged down, its running backs gobbled up by the Cardinal defense, its offensive line porous, its receivers unable to get open or to catch the ball when they did. Read here.
A conversation with: Tinkle Magazine Editor Rajani Thindiath: Tinkle, India’s first English-language comic book for children, published its 600th issue last month. Read more about this iconic comic with which most Indian children grew up.
Did a bug in Deep Blue lead to Kasparov’s defeat? In his new book, Nate Silver writes that a glitch in IBM’s chess terminator may have spooked Garry Kasparov in his famous 1997 loss. But he was more likely psyched out by its surprising brilliance. Read the full story.