Category Archives: Insight

Certification and Certification

The past decade has seen a proliferation of certification programmes. Some are better and some are ****.

There as a time when I had friends who sought out any and every certificate they can collect. I think there is a slowing down. One reason is the economic recession that makes people and employers more careful here they put their money. Another is the realisation that jobs depend on more substation life things than just certificates.

Certificates are still useful. But you better be good in the subject that you are certified in. I think the days of getting jobs based on certificates of subject matter that one has no knowledge beyond the exams is largely over. And that’s a good thing, for employers and also for genuine training providers and certification bodies’ reputation.

Hmmm….. do you smell a fish?

Taiwan food prices – not as cheap as I expected, though still much cheaper than, say Ossieland

I am in Taiwan for a while. A month already. Really nice people. Do not see the dog eat dog attitude I have found in some other places. What surprised me initially, was the cost of food. It’s high for what I expect, given the slower development here. Thigh it depends on where you eat, I tend to go for the mixed rice shops where common worker types go. I paid about 60 to 90 Taiwan new dollar. (100 NT is about US$3.30 or Malaysian RM13.20). Soup and tea usually thrown in. I found in my travels that our Malaysian/Singapore etc environment of always (almost) trying to upsell you drinks when you buy a meal not so common here. Made me realise the types of pressure we are subject to daily, where we no longer even recognise that it is a pressure that’s forces you to decide one way or another.

Back to prices.  Cheapest mixed rice I had recently in Malaysia was RM3+.. Leaving aside the plain nasi lemak or roti Chennai and tosai which can go for two ringgit.

Sorry. Bloody ipad is a real pain when i try to resize pictures to let them be small enough to fit in a web blog.  Why, Apple, Why? I thought Apple’s speaciality was to make it easy for humans who dont need to get into the techie stuff.  Now???

 

Good looking side profile – how a body balance?

Somehow I like this picture. The side profile seem to have some natural aesthetic about it. I was going to crop out the right hand side of the picture, but decided to keep the “noise” because it seems to balance the weight that the mind attaches to the guards tummy, and the side it is facing.

tummy

Side profile of guard

What do we see depends on several things in our own mind

This is a simple picture. Quite boring. Unless you notice the hand on the head of the person and wonder why. Then you look around the picture for some clue. Is he puzzled by something? Is it something he is thinking of, or something he has just see or heard? You can probably write a whole page, or more, of the story from just this one picture.

picture story

Simple picture has a story

Food – the bane of cheap food, for some

Treasure food poster

Treasure food poster

As I grow old (er) there are fewer things that really upset me. Though I seem to be complaining a lot more about those things that do (working on these).

One thing which I think will stay with me, is the compulsion to keep spreading the message about the terrible wastage of food in many places. There is no race or place in the world that is immune to this tendency among some of its better fed individuals.

Taking more food than we can, or want to eat, at one sitting, is something that we can learn to be conscious of. I do not think that people (except the mentally sick) deliberately start off with wanting to throw excess food away. Nevertheless it is a mental condition that is a lack of awareness. Awareness of the degree of hunger or need to nourish ourselves. Even the joy of eating something that looks or smells nice. Our favourite dish. There is a physical limit to how much we can eat. Consciousness of this at the moment in time when we are at the buffet table line will help us to moderate our actions.

I would hve liked to use the element of fear, in this message. The karma thing. Where it all comes full circle and you end up in a life where you face starvation simply because those who have are wasting food that could have been more than enough to feed those who have not.  But I will not. Because it is good enough, and better,  simply to be aware of our real needs, versus our purely psychological tendencies, driven by a hundred demons (the little examined past experiences that shape our present attitudes ). This is not just about food. It is about your own self development.

I will revisit this theme again, elaborating on and relating this to other topics. Because, there is so much wastage going on in our lives. There is no need to be austere or be a yogi (heaven forbid). Life can be enjoyed to the full, with all the good experiences meant for you to experience in this life.

 

 

 

 

No pain no gain?

There is a common perception that in order to benefit from exercises all from sports we need to suffer pain.at the same time, there is also a belief that pain is a warning by our system, the body system,  that something is wrong somewhere and that  we need to protect the part that is suffering pain. 

Clearly, there is truth in both of these statements. The difference is the situation under which we will apply either one of these beliefs. I should not use the word belief, because we need to look at the facts of the individual case.

There must be some sort of criteria, guidelines, that we can make use of in deciding whether the pain that we are currently suffering from, in a given situation, is one that we should try to minimize or try to remove the source of pain in any way.  We ought to, perhaps even increase the pain significantly, in order to take away the problem permanently.

Give this matter some thought, because all of us will at some point or other, face this decision. Leaving the decision to others to tell us what to do is not a good idea. Because the pain can only be felt by we ourself and the way that we verbalize the condition to another person, even a doctor, may not do justice to the actual condition. 

My Injured ankle. X-ray MRI did not help the “specialist” doctors diagnose the problem let alone the cure. More on this on a later post. 

Old and New buildings contrast reflects some inate human nature?

When I saw this old building in front of the modern glass walled skyscraper, I thought of whether it reflects the changing taste in society of this place. If so, is it due to evolving ideas of what is desirable in a building? Or is it a change brought about by advances in technology. That is, limitations of technology determine what is desirable, to an extent.

Increasing rates of change in our environment and technology has led us to believe that what is impossible today, may one day be possible. Often within our lifetime. Science fiction has become reality.

What then is the next step-wise change in our thoughts? When there is the self confidence that what we wish for, can be achieved, with time and resources, what then is the next level of expectations?

A philosophical question? A moral question? Or is even the type of question yet to be understood and given a name!

An old brick building in front of a towering glass clad tall building.

Old short, New tall, building technology reflected here.

Thinking out of the box is incorrect.

Thinking out of the box may be a good thing. But there’s a problem when it’s applied. In order to think out of the box, you have to be able to know where the box is. This is often missed out. The box is different according to the scenario and the area of study. There is no such thing as a universal box where you can say that “this is the boundary of the box” and apply that to all situations. Photo-2016-12-5-07-45.jpg

What’s in a name?

Names are important in helping us to be clear about what we mean. And the same the other way around. If we wish to convey some piece of information the choice of words is one factor that determines The success or failure of our communication. 

This is easier said than done. Many other factors have to be considered  in tandem. The listener and the speaker may attach different meanings to a particular word. The context of the moment and place of the interaction is another factor. The mood of each person may also change by the minute. Body language may be correctly or incorrectly interpreted. 

IMG 1797 SSlookLadderOnGroud

What does this mean? Is the guy thinking deeply? Puzzled? Starting to get a heart attack? Wondering what the ladder is doing on the ground? Angry with the ladder?

 

This is a topic that we can revisit many more times with further insight. 

Egg and it’s strange uses

The humble egg. Two things come to my mind.

One is why we seem to assume it’s a hens egg or a chicken egg when we hear the word “egg”. Without any other context, the chicken in the assumed mother of the “egg”. This contextual meaning is food ( pun intended ) for another post. 

Second, is, the arguments we still have on whether the egg is deserving of the same kind of consideration as the hatched fully formed creature, be it chicken or human. It is a very contentious argument and can get very convoluted since the discussion is frequently emotional and both sides tends to dredge up “scientific proofs” as well as moral, ethical and religious literature.

I shall leave you with the questions, and not pontificate on this. I am using this to illustrate the in the realm of work, in business analysis or in project management, you are likely going to meet similar types of issues regarding the definition of things, and the very difficult to define or explain situations, existing or required. An example is when someone can happily describe what he does at work, but finds it difficult to connect them all up into a nice picture.

This is a reason why I am careful not to give new analysts or project managers the impression that “it’s all in the book”.