The Bad and the Ugly of AI

Title: Artificial Intelligence & Future of Power: 5 Battlegrounds
Author: Rajiv Malhotra
Rupa Publications India

‘Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested ….’ When Francis Bacon tried to make this distinction, he advised that few books are to be read with diligence and attention for they are invaluable. But he could not have foreseen that there can be one more factor for classification – scary!

 This book ends at Srisailam. ‘ I could see the frail figure of Maniamma silhouetted in the distance holding the bamboo pole on the veranda. I waved, knowing well that she would not respond’. That was goodbye to one phase of life.

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Forest Fire and Other Stories

Title: Forest Fire and Other Stories
Author: Subir Adhicary
Pp 220; Price Rs 250; Genre Memoir
Blue Rose Publishers

We know author Subir Adhicary by his book, Beyond My Blinkers. He has a penchant for finding humour even in the most pathetic of circumstances. His second book, The Forest Fire and Other Stories, is also a description of reality, a memory of his primetime in life. That he is writing about those days forty years later in such great detail not only tells us that he has an elephantine memory but also an empathetic ear. It is an extremely descriptive narrative that rolls off his pen and like a watchful drone, he hovers over every word that draws smirks and tears.

 This book ends at Srisailam. ‘ I could see the frail figure of Maniamma silhouetted in the distance holding the bamboo pole on the veranda. I waved, knowing well that she would not respond’. That was goodbye to one phase of life.

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The Life We Live!

Vishal Gupta

What is the nature of human life? If you were to read Professor Jordan Peterson’s recent best-seller,12 Rules for Life, you will learn that human life is full of 'suffering' and our very existence in this world is a 'horrible' tragedy for which we need to 'make amends'. Life, in Peterson’s worldview, is 'nasty [and] brutish'.

A brief summary of any one’s ideas, let alone someone with a PhD, is bound to be an oversimplification, but there is no denying that Peterson’s view of the world is dark, pessimistic, and nihilistic. How else done one explain the 'life is suffering' theme that pervades an entire book that purports to be about how to live well?

Peterson is a practicing clinical psychologist who probably meets several troubled and..

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How India Became Democratic

CURRENTLY when India is in the throes of constant elections, somewhere or the other, we don't perhaps feel the need to know or have time (and perhaps interest ) to realise how the power to vote was transferred to the free Indian in the first general elections held in 1950. We are presently engaged in whether the electronic voting machines (EVM) are tamper-proof or the ballot papers were the sound system of voting.

Do we ask ourselves, how did India start its election process after it independence from the British Raj ? What were the challenges, especially when some of the princely States ( Bhopal, Junagadh or Hyderabad) had no intentions of merging with the Union of India that had just born? Did the Constituent Assembly have any role in preparing the electoral rolls of this vast new nation or was the Election Commission of India straightaway given the responsibility? How did that happen? The complex and huge exercise, both legal, social and administrative, of making universal..

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Tome that caters to intellect & faith

I often speculate if the progenitors of the sacred Rig Veda ever had the faintest idea of the word Hindu. When the venerated sages of the many mandalas that spawned this great compendium of lofty intellectual thought which also blends holy practice and earthy philosophy they were clear about one belief; worship of the Creator. The Rig Veda exhorts the individual to focus on the life here as opposed to the hereafter. It then permits or provides ways and means to connect with the Creator according to ones predilections and needs. Thus, one of the opening richa's of the Rig Veda categorically states: Aano bhadra krtavo yantu vishwatah (1.89.1 Rigveda), which in translation best reads as 'Let noble thoughts come to us from every direction'..

Stemming from this philosophical belief flows much of that which is described as Hinduism today. Sri Krishna sermonises in the Bhagwad Gita are regarded as divine by the adherents of Hinduism, 'Just as all rivers fall into the same ocean, all

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Full flavour of Telugu writing

The short story as a narrative encapsulates an ethos, a plot, a paradigm that is complete in itself with an ease that is deceptive and tantalising in its flow. This anthology has been very carefully and meticulously gleaned from the rich storehouse that Telugu literature is. Every tale is telling. Every tale is relatable. Every tale is identifiable. Every tale is contemporary. This is where the compilation becomes both compelling and contemplative.

The translation is so complete that one can easily divine the patios of the native language in the context of every circumstance and each anecdote. Almost every facet of human emotion, anticipation and condition, has been clothed in a tale that delineates man's journey from the cradle to the grave. It is in this, that the compilation makes the decisive score. Every story is a

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Jealous mistresses of nine men—politics and practice

Shweta Bansal's Courting Politics is about nine of India's distinguished lawyer—politicians. Shweta, a lawyer by education also cleared the civil services and went on to join the coveted Indian Foreign Service. She has featured nine lawyer politicians in her book. All the nine men documented in the book— Ram Jethmalani, Shanti Bhushan, P Chidambaram, Muzaffar Hussain Baig, Kapil Sibal, Arun Jaitley, Salman Khurshid, Ravi Shankar Prasad and Abhishek Manu Singhvi are legends, both in field of law and politics, which is evident from the fact that six of the nine, have been union ministers The book is divided into nine chapters; each dedicated to a dignitary and discussing the journey of the protagonist highlighting the ups and downs in their professional and personal live..

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Murty presents the trinity for children

Sudha Murty is back with her second book in the mythological series, titled The Man in the Egg: Unusual Tales about the Trinity. The book has three sections - Omkara Swarup, Satyam Shivam Sundaram, and Sambhavami Yuge Yuge which tells numerous stories about the Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh respectively.

Alongside, the stories also tell the importance of rituals and tales behind them, giving a logical insight to the activities performed in a Hindu household. Each story discusses an entirely different concept, such as Brahma's folly shows how even Gods were not perfect and committed mistakes, The Story of Sati brings into focus the wrath of Shiva and its consequences, and The Bones of Dadhichi explains the importance of sacrificing oneself for a greater good..

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Gurmehar's subtle attempt at writing an autobiography

Gurmehar Kaur, the girl who rose to fame amidst the infamous clash of 2017 between AISF (All India Student Federation) and ABVP (Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad), has added yet another feather to her hat—of that of an author. The 20 years old Delhi University student's 'Small Acts of Freedom' is an account of sheer courage in the face of adversity by the three generations of Kaur women. However, these stories are not unusual in any way whatsoever. These are the everyday narrative of every single woman in our families.

The struggles that a woman faces within the four walls of a house might seem too trifle to even notice, but the truth is that they are not. Therefore, the story does not present anything new to the table but it does give away an insight into how those..

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