Friday, February 27, 2009

Twitter for Teachers

Here are some terrific articles to read on Twitter for Teachers:

1. http://cooper-taylor.com/blog/2008/08/50-ideas-on-using-twitter-for-education/
2. http://theory.isthereason.com/?p=2217
3. http://academhack.outsidethetext.com/home/2008/twitter-for-academia/
4. http://skambalu.edublogs.org/2009/02/14/more-on-twitter/
5. http://www.chrislott.org/tag/twitter/
6. http://www.sciencebase.com/science-blog/100-scientific-twitter-friends
7. http://www.digitalang.com/blog/

Monday, February 23, 2009

AR Rahman Wins 2 Oscars

The first time I heard the songs of Roja, I knew my life and the lives of millions of Indians would never be the same again. Just listening to the song brought alive vignettes of every day life, joys, heartbreaks and everything basically. The music made you connect you with yourself. It made you want to cry. It made you want to sing. It made you want to dive into your inner depths with joy and revisit every moment that made your life worth living. That's just the kind of beginning A.R. Rahman brought alive on celluloid through his music. Time Magazine called the songs in Roja as one of the top 10 sound tracks of all times.

He didnt go the way many others did. He didnt swamp himself with people who praised him to the skies. He didnt go around showing off his newfound status. He didnt do anything but plunge more and more into music. In fact, Rahman has always stayed away from publicity. He has tried to be as 'invisible' as possible.

At the same time, Rahman revolutionized the music industry and did so much to introduce talented young musicians and instrumentalists. So many talented youngsters were not given a chance in the Southern industry till AR Rahman began introducing brilliant and fine artists. He introduced only the best and redefined their learning and career curves too. It is very unusual for people to do that in the cut-throat world of the film industry.

Today, when I see pictures of AR Rahman holding the two Oscars, talking about success with his characteristic modesty and smiling away with a shyness that is so innocent, I can only say, "God bless this wonderful person."

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Writers, Wine Boom and Well Being

As some one who loves exotic wines, it is thrilling to see how wine boom is not confined to the Danielle Steel novels one gets glued to. At times, I used to read parts of her novels again and again to read about the wines she described.

Another famous writer who loved wines was Ernest Hemingway, who said, "Wine is one of the most civilized things in the world and one of the most natural things of the world that has been brought to the greatest perfection, and it offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than, possibly, any other purely sensory thing."

Let's face it. It's one of the most flavor filled and fulfilling naturall things in the world today.

But I am not sure how many Indians really appreciate the exotic tones and textures of wine. Maybe price is an issue or maybe its pairing with Indian cuisine hasnt been in great favor. Whatever it is, there is such a small group of wine lovers that it's just recently that wine has soared in demand. Also, fine quality wines like Sula have made an impressive entry. I totally love Sula wines though I wish they were more reasonably priced.

Coming back to the wine boom, I feel great that countries like China and India are emerging as strong players in the wine industry. India is hosting a Wine Fair in March 2009, which is just a few weeks away. See, what i mean?

Take the case of China, where over 90% of its people prefer red wine, not just for the taste but because Chinese culture respects red as a color of abundance, power and vibrance. White wine, however, is viewed as a more classy and chic choice in China's elite circles.

No wonder, people say that now is really a fine time to declar yourself as a wine lover in Asia. Places like Hong Kong actively promote wine as being a great thing for health, heart and wellbeing while in the UK, wine bottles are plastered with health warnings and duty hikes.

Last but not the least, here are some of my favorite links on wines:

1. To read about Greek wines, visit http://www.foodandwine.com/articles/greek-wines-7-greek-varietals-to-know

2. To read about explosion of dry roses, visit http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/05/22/WIQ710P4EA.DTL

3. To read about how to taste and savor wines, visit http://wine.about.com/od/winebasic1/ht/winetasting.htm

Finally, send me names of your favorite wines and what you like about it. Would love to hear from you. You can reach me at swapnaraghusanand@gmail.com.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Bill Marriott's Blog

Recently, I was struck by the 'blog reading bug' and i think its fun to read what people around the world relate to things that are happening around. It makes the world a smaller and much closer place. It ushers in a level of intimacy that definitely breaks so many boundaries.

Here is one that got my attention: http://www.blogs.marriott.com/archive/default.asp?item=2319978

No, before you suspect that I am promoting the Marriott, let me clarify. I am not a hospitality student or an employee hoping to move up the ladder in the Marriott but I definitely enjoy reading the blog by Bill Marriott, the CEO of Marriott group. His articles are so interesting without being boring. Nothing spells like a preachy business sermon. It makes sense. Yet, of course i am aware that he is promoting his brand in a most effective way. Still i like to relate to Bill's take on events that are happening around us, be it Obama's win or planning family holidays, things like that.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Why Use Twitter

There is so much talk about the 'microblogging' potential of Twitter and how its just perfect for harnessing work opportunities. Frankly, it went over my head because when I joined Twitter, I didnt really understand how this helps me expand my work related connections.

Also, I couldnt figure out why I am using Twitter in the first place. Leisa Reichelt called Twitter as a platform for "ambient intimacy" because it lets people connect with each other regularly without participating too closely in their lives.

But when 26/11 happened in Mumbai, I saw how people and even eye witness accounts began to get "tweeted" with pictures even before newspapers got to track those stories. It was amazing how "citizen journalism" became so powerful through Twitter. People get to share the micro-banalities of life by stating what they are doing to the whole social networking world.

More and more Twitterers come up with innovative inputs to share useful information. It has become such an amazing growth that it is definitely becoming mainstream like micro-banalities or Orkut.

In fact, Facebook even tried to buy Twitter but failed to do so. ,The founders of Twitter plan to make it a revenue generating company by offering incredibly compelling service and a terrific experience for millions of people dotted around the world.

Imagine you can connect with celebrities including Spears, Lance Armstrong, Tina Fey and mich more through Twitter.

For those who want more information on Twitter, here are some interesting links to check out:

Check out these links:

  1. http://pistachioconsulting.com/why-use-twitter/
  2. http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifehack/5-ways-to-use-twitter-for-good.html
  3. http://www.901am.com/2007/the-top-5-ways-smart-people-use-twitter.html
  4. http://www.doshdosh.com/ways-you-can-use-twitter/
These links really helped me understand just a little about Twitter. If you want to know about the popular Twitter acronynms, check out this link: http://pistachioconsulting.com/top-15-twitter-acronyms/.

Hope it helps you too.

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