MSNBC compares response in India between the recent Sumatran earthquake and the greater impact of the 2001 Gujarati earthquake, and then examines the recent social/business/governmental changes which have engendered such beneficial changes.
Steve Ballmer of Microsoft notes that their Hotmail service has five times as many accounts in India and China than there are actual computers, because much of the realworld usage occurs on shared machines in internet cafes. Probable offshoot: they'll have difficulty moving to practical commerce there because of the security risks of private data on shared machines.
BangaloreBest.com offers a SWF tutorial of over fifty common phrases in written English, romanized Kannada, and spoken Kannada. (Kannada is the colloquial language used in Karnataka, the state in India which contains the city Bangalore.) There is no written Kannada in this example, though... you can see the alphabet here, and the Unicode implications here.
Coca-Cola discusses their process of understanding the retail beverage market in India. (This weekend I was reading "Doing Business in China" by Ming-Jer Chen, and Coca-Cola came up for repeated phrase on how they worked to understand the messages they were actually sending.)
A Sun employee writes of his experiences seeing mobile use after returning to India. (I'm not sure it's a "he"... there are initials "VM" and I'm too lazy to hunt around on other pages for the writer's full name.) Interesting... there are sociographic splits among call-receivers, texters, gamers... data-oriented use is also naturally evolving. Start line: "It is becoming increasingly clear that the developing countries have adopted a computing device that makes more sense to their daily life - cellphone." From a comment: "I think the next step is to make browsing and ecommerce easier. Imagine sitting in bus back from work and being able to purchase movie tickets, chinese food and getting the latest on the weather and soccer results."
"Abhijit" on Blogspot collects together some of the recent articles on how technology is being dispersed in India, leapfrogging the stages that other places have endured. (I didn't know about WiFi on buses, for instance, creating a wide-area network with single point-of-service in the evening.)
I went to the Festival of India in Fremont today. It was about two hours transit each way, and I spent just about an hour there, but it was worth it.
The event was held in a large municipal parking lot, and it was packed... San Jose Mercury says 10,000 people by mid-day Saturday, and Tri-Valley Herald has estimates of more.
I didn't carry any momentum into this event -- my Hindi study has dropped down in preparation for the trip to China -- I wasn't even able to do any effective picking-out of phrases overheard in the crowd.
I also wanted to get something to eat, but was too overwhelmed by the crowd to stand in a line for twenty minutes. There was one booth grilling meat that didn't have a long line, and I noticed it was lamb rather than chicken.
Weirdest thing was an airplane towing a banner that said something like "Kill minority religions, that's the Indian way to get Hindu votes." I'm assuming it's a Muslim group that sponsored it... the choice of message, in context, may have said more than they desired...
I liked being around the people, and calming myself down to handle such a crowd. Towards the end I was standing on the fringes, along the side of a car to stay out of foot traffic, and I noticed that even with fifteen feet free on the one side people still brushed against me when passing by. I scrunched even closer to the car, but didn't want to lean on it.
I would have liked to have smoked a pipe, to calm myself down with the crowd, but I noticed no one was smoking at all.
I have never seen so many beautiful sarees in my life.
I don't know what I got out of it, but I'm glad I went.