Friday, October 17, 2014

Busy bees

Busy, busy, busy.

Drive. Shop. Drop him. Pick her. Get this. Buy that. Do this. Go there. Work. Office. Home. Career. Kids. Parents.

Oh how we love to pretend we're holding up the world.

Newsflash : We aren't. We're doing it all for ourselves.

The world would carry on just fine without us. But without the illusion of importance and urgency, we'll fall apart.

One day I'll have nothing left to do. And I know I'll hate it.

Friday, September 05, 2014

یادیں

گزری یادیں ، بھولی باتیں 
لوٹ کے آتی ہیں 

پیار کے لمحے، سارے  سپنے 
یاد کراتی  ہیں 

دل میں جیسے پھول کھلے ہوں 
ایسا لگتا ہے 

ساری  خوشیاں  لوٹ آئی  ہوں 
ایسا لگتا ہے 

وقت گزرتا جاتا ہے، روپ بدلتے جاتے ہیں 
لیکن کچھ لمحے ایسے ہیں ساتھ نبھاتے ہیں 

کتنے دریا ، کتنے دیس ، کتنی یادیں  ، کتنے بھیس 
کیسی کیسی تصویریں اور کتنی باتیں ہیں 

برسوں بیتے ، شامیں آئیں ، صبحیں گزر گیئں 
میرے دل کے آئنے میں کل کی باتیں ہیں 

لوٹ کے آئین ، دل بہلائیں، میری آس  بڑھائیں 
میرا کل سرمایا میری میٹھی یادیں ہیں 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Places in my mind

Deep inside my mind there is a place which is beautiful.

And I've spent all my life finding the key to this place. I find it for a while and then it eludes me again. It doesn't matter where I live or what I'm surrounded by. No riches can make me happy when I cannot find this place - and no ruin can upset me when I'm there.

In the final analysis we just live inside our heads. Unless we are comfortable there, until we are at peace with our soul, we will not be happy.

That's why I write, because writing takes me there. It seems to wash away the distractions of living, the worries, the hurries, and the rush of the ordinary and to connect me to myself.

It really is amazing that writing a few deeply felt lines can bring me more happiness and contentment than the most expensive gizmos, or the most outrageous amusements designed to entertain me.

When you get past the complications, past the self created sense of urgency, past the irrational voices in the head, life is actually pretty simple.

When I first started out I used to think that the only thing I needed was an access to books for the rest of my life and I'd be fine. And while I've done so much more and gone on so many more adventures, it has to be said that nothing grounds me quite like the written word.

Thank goodness for the small miracles of the ordinary everyday.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

I know how this ends

I know how this ends.

My life is nothing but one of billions happening right now. It's not hard to see how this ends. All I need to do is to look around me and take an average of a few thousand lives and that's pretty good indicator of where I'll end up.

And the longer I live, the easier it becomes to predict because my past life contains more data points to run a correlation with the averages.

We're all just so darned predictable. You grow up, go to college, get married, get a job, build a house, worry about your kids future, worry about your own future, get old and die. Everyone I know is along this path, or at least trying to get on this path.

Not that there is anything wrong with that. 

Indeed it is comforting to know that no matter what we do, we're pretty much conforming to some norm or the other, which has been repeated and re-lived over and over again by millions before us.

It is a bit funny though, because most of us think we're unique, but of course we're not. We're hugely, boringly, startlingly, statistically predictable. 

It is a bit off-putting at times though. Here we are, trying to be unique and different and special and all that, but the odds of us pulling that off are astronomically thin.

Sure, some decide to break the mould and act  different, but even they are just following the pattern set by millions before them. The loner, the adventurer, the cynic, the lone genius, the crazy singer, the warrior, the villain, the hero, the philosopher... it's all been done before. Over and over again. It's boringly, ridiculously, predictable. Just a slightly different point on the normal curve which never really changes.

Does it matter ? Probably not. Does it change anything ? of course not. Because this blog itself has been done a million times before. It's boringly, ridiculously predictable.



Tuesday, June 10, 2014

i (almost) robot

It'a a common scene in science fiction movies: the super human, or half-robot-half-human, or super-intelligent-alien-robot, or whatever, needs to learn something. He plugs himself into some kind of electronic library, and a few seconds later he has completely mastered how to fly a helicopter, or how to do kung fu, or whatever. (remember The Matrix ? or the robot in Short Circuit if you are an 80s kid)

We're not there yet, but the internet sometimes makes me feel a bit like that.

I come across a new idea which piques my curiosity. I do a quick Google on the subject, pare down to two or three promising links - one of which is usually Wikipedia - do a quick browse and, an hour later, I'm much more familiar with the subject.

Not quite as impressive as a one second upload of an entire encyclopaedia by the robots in movies, but not bad. Not bad at all.

Human curiosity is a wonderful thing, and for those who like to learn new things this is a wonderful time to be alive.

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Mac OSX Yosemite: First Impressions - 1

Having downloaded the first developer preview of the Mac OS X Yosemite, I'm currently putting it thru its paces. As had been widely expected, OS X has been given a full facial uplift with new colours, new transparency and new icons.



Note the new icons for everything from the Finder to the calculator and the Trash basket. Also the slightly new colours of the minimise, close, and full screen buttons.

On the whole it took me a day to adjust to the new colours, but now that I'm past that I'm liking the new look. Its not a dramatic departure so it is still familiar, but it does look nice and fresh.

The window close, minimise, and full screen buttons (red,, yellow, and green) look flat to go with the rest of the interface. Also the green button now always takes you to full screen mode - there is no dedicated full screen button on the right side of the window as before.

The other big visual change is in the notifications area, which now contains a Today tab. This contains widgets for things like calendar, weather etc and you can customise it by clicking on the edit button at the botton. Nothing earth shattering, but nice to have.



Usability wise, the thing I'm really liking is the new iCould folder in the Finder - which behaves exactly like my dropbox folder did. Note how it has automatically created a separate subfolder for each app from which I'm saving files on the cloud. Be warned however that turning this on means you must also upgrade to iOS8 beta to access these files - they won't be visible from iOS 7.

Finally, there is the new spotlight. This is a major improvement in usability and looks. While it works mostly like before, the built-in previews tab makes finding things even easier.



This developer preview version is quite stable, but I do see crashes and freezes from time to time as can be expected from any beta version. I have not seen any compatibility issues with any apps yet. It is very much usable, but if it is your primary work machine, proceed with caution for now

The other set of changes are in Safari which has undergone a complete interface refresh with a cleaner look and more compact toolbars and controls - more on that later perhaps.