Saturday, 12 January 2019

Life on the Edge - book review

Life on the Edge is a mix mash of romance and the compromises that ordinary mortals have to make in mundane lives. It captures the travails of a middle class (failed)marriage very well. It tells how every day life becomes hell when you marry the wrong person, just because he is from your caste, community and your parents have approved it.

What I liked about the book is that it is extremely well written. The writing is simple, clear and error free. The plot resembles that of a movie in the eighties. So children's fees remain unpaid because of poverty, there are no good clothes to wear and scooters are bought on EMI. However as we reach the melodramatic climax this eastman colour story from the eighties takes a leap and enters the uncensored Netflix era. The ending is too bold when compared with the set up that the author creates. But at the same time the behaviour of the protagonist appears justified in the given circumstances of the case

The book is very different from the kind of books that are sold in the market today. It isn't a college romance, it isn't a clone of Da Vinci Code and not a book sold solely on marketing. It is something different. It is a one time read for sure.

Sunday, 6 January 2019

The Smart Home Revolution

As a child I loved listening to the tales from the Arabian Nights. One of my favourites was Alibaba and the forty thieves. I stood at the door of my house with an elan and said ‘Khul Ja Sim Sim’ numerous times. It was my dream that one day the door would open with my oral command. And indeed one day the door opened. Not because of any magic but because my house was now a smart home. Smart homes, smart watches, smart lights have become a part of our day today lives.
I have a five years old daughter whom I leave alone at home when I go to work. Of course there is a very loving caretaker who babysits her. ‘You will know how a parent feels only when you become one.’ My mother would say all the time. Today when I have become a parent I perfectly agree with her. Whether it is minor cold or cough my heart starts beating faster when anything is wrong with her. So when I see from my office that she is no longer playing in water, sleeping peacefully and not coughing, I feel that smart cameras are a boon for today’s working parents. I can control the smart camera with my phone. With the camera placed at the centre of the house I could rotate it 360 degrees and monitor all the activities at home. Given the number of crime news that are highlighted in the news, I feel that smart cameras offer effective protection. Prevention after all is better than cure.
When I purchased my first smart wearable, a smart watch the only words that came out of my mouth were incredulous. How can a watch have so many functions. It offered me a weather forecast. It told me my heart rate. It told me the number of steps I took when I walked and ran, and the number of calories that I burnt. With the internal storage I could add my favourite songs into the watch and listen to them when I went out for a stroll. Being a watch, there are alarm, stopwatch settings as well. Can you believe it when I say that the smart watch even tracked my sleep. I could easily change the watch faces, which are displays. The watch faces are extremely attractive. Further I could even add my own pictures as watch face. Wow, could I have asked for more? The watch is charged by placing it on the dock. Thus it is very easy to use. Wait there are some more stunning features to be discussed. I get all my mobile phone alerts on my smart watch. So if I have kept my phone in my pocket, bag or left it at home, I still have access to it.
Ten years back no one would have imagined that our lives would be so intrinsically linked with our mobile phones. Be it banking or gas cylinder booking you require a mobile phone. If mobile phones are the present, smart home, smart lights, smart wearable, smart camera and all other smart devices are the future. The earlier you switch to these smart devices the better it is for you.
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