Library sourcing

It’s been close to two years since I took up membership at the British Council Library in Bangalore and of late I’ve been thinking that I won’t extend my membership after it expires this December. The library hasn’t been very active in updating its book stocks, and seeing the same books in the same places again and again (my interests mean I’m limited to a handful of shelves in the library) gets monotonous, and there have been times when I’ve borrowed books just for the heck of it.

Yesterday, I was meeitng Kodhi after which I wanted to go to the library (since books were due for return), and he offered me to come along with me. And for the first time in a very long time, I had too many books from which I had to decide which ones to take home. There had been books which I’d been seeing at their regular places time and again, and had never felt the need to read until Kodhi told me about them and convinced me to borrow them. Overall, it was a very pleasant visit to the library.

Going forward, I think I’ll extend this strategy. Every time I go to the library, I’ll take along a different person – hopefully someone who understands well my interests and reading habits, and see if I make better use of the library. Since there are two months left before my membership expires, I hope to have got more data on this (how “successful” visits to the library are when I go with a friend) and can make a better decision about giving up the membership (it costs around Rs. 2000 per year).

Introducing: NED Talks

I suppose a number of you have heard of TED Talks ( You might have seen it in the news recently, for it is going to come to Mysore sometime later this year. TED talks are available online (on the ted website), and are in general extremely informative and entertaining.

When TED can have talks, can NED be far behind? So I, along with Kodhi, hereby invite you to the first of the series of NED talks. The beauty of NED talks is that nothing is known yet. So far we’ve been putting NED to figure out what we are going to have as part of those talks. However, wee are confident that we won’t put NED to organize the talks themselves.

So here are a few salient features. You might notice that nothing is concrete yet, heck nothing is even the steel framework yet. I request you to add your own concrete to this, and put in your ideas.

  • The first of the series of NED talks is likely to be held in Bangalore in October 2009. I have picked the date randomly, and is subject to change.
  • The first of the series will be a day-long event. However, if registrations exceed our expectations, the event might last a whole weekend.
  • We have no clue what is going to be there as part of these talks. We know that it is going to be a bunch of mango people (aam junta for the uninitiated) who will be talking, but we dont’ know what they are going to be talking about. We don’t even know who are the people who are going to be talking, though I’m sure I’m going to be one of them.
  • If you have any bright ideas as to what we can do at the NED talks, please let us know.
  • NED is not rich enough to put talks on its own website, hence the videos will be put up on youtube. However, we cannot promise the same quality that the TED videos.
  • Please note that NED talks are only loosely inspired by TED talks, and has nothing to do with the latter. I also wish to clarify that NED talks are not a spoof of TED talks.
  • At the risk of repeating myself – if you have any bright ideas as to what can be done at the NED talks, plis to be cantributing.
  • Oh and at the risk of repeating myself again – we are really serious about organizxing the NED talks. And we promise that we won’t put NED for NED talks.