All posts by Swapna Kishore

Let’s hear (read) it for mindless, multi-tasked exercise

One of those funny things about exercise (at least for me), is how, no matter how much time I might have whiled away in stuff I can’t remember, I’m usually pretty sure that my falling back on my to-do list is correlated to the few minutes I spared for meaningful exercise. Now don’t get me wrong; I love exercise, at least in theory. I’d love to do it if I had the time. There was even a time (long, long ago) when I enjoyed the sense of wellbeing that stretches and weights brought me, that feeling of a body that works. I did mention that it was long ago, right? Well… Of course not all exercise is exercise. Walking, for me, is not exercise. It is pleasure. I can do it for hours, and never think of the to-do list lengthening with every minute I spend away from it. But …

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Using my procrastination mood to create a book trailer video

July beginning. There were heaps of things I should have been doing, but they were all large projects, and I just couldn’t get the energy to plan and get started on them, so I kept nibbling at smaller to-dos. But though I did nibble a few millimetres off my to-do list that spans several pages, I felt dissatisfied. What I wanted was to do something that I found fun, that made me feel productive(even if I wasn’t being productive in a productive way, if you know what I mean). I wanted to make something. So, though creating this video was nowhere in my active and overflowing to-do list, and merely a small item at the bottom of my huge wishlist, I spent a few days creating it: (you can see the video directly on youtube, too, at: this link. Ah well, the sketches were fun to make, and I did …

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Quick announcement for new ebooks I have published

cover image of ebook aligning ferret

I was updating the site to add details about an ebook I published a few days ago when and realized I had not made any blog entries even about my earlier ebook 🙂 I’ll probably do a detailed entry on related stuff later, but here’s the basic data: In the last few months, I’ve published two Kindle ebooks on Amazon as part of my professional work. Both have been co-authored with Rajesh Naik. My latest book is (Authors and ). It is a Kindle eBook with 3 quizzes on CMMI® – SVC (v1.3), each with 35 questions, and suitable for self-assessment by process/ QA professionals and CMMI specialists and is available at and This book is part of a set of products created for CMMI® – SVC (v1.3). Information on these products can be seen here. My other ebook, my personal favourite, is a business novel, , which …

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Year 2013 so far: movies I enjoyed – Kai Po Che, Special 26

dvd cover of movie showing actors

I usually watch movies comfortably at home, using DVDs. But I venture out to halls sometimes, and this year I’ve seen two movies in cine multiplexes. Luckily I enjoyed both: Kai Po Che! and Special 26. I even bought the DVD of Special 26 so that I could see it again and again 🙂 (Wikipedia page here).Actors: , , , . It has received very good reviews. Check out Special 26 at (Wikipedia page here): Having read Chetan Bhagat’s Five Point Someone and seen Aamir Khan’s 3 Idiots, I am more than ready to believe that Bhagat’s books are better as movies than as books :). Check out Kai Po Che at And the book I have not read yet (and may never read, having seen the movie): Chetan Bhagat’s The 3 Mistakes of My Life (at

Revisiting favorite books: On the Beach, Nevil Shute

cover image of the book

On the Beach (Nevil Shute): A classic. A gentle and uplifting story set in a world where everyone is doomed to die as the aftermath of nuclear war. Leaves readers with a sense of quiet dignity and hope in spite of the depressing scenario. Read the full post here: Revisiting favorite books: On the Beach, Nevil Shute

Read the full post here: Revisiting favorite books: On the Beach, Nevil Shute

Hunting for post boxes in this send-by-courier era

My father worked in the postal department; for me, as a child, red meant post-box red. Letters were everywhere. Sitting in a post office, waiting for my father to complete work, I’d see postmen hefting sacks of letters, or pouring out the contents on a table/ the floor. I’d see letters sorted expertly into piles, then bagged and put in vans. The smell of paper, of gum (that thick sort they used), pervaded the air. Once, when I had to go somewhere, I sat behind a postman’s cycle instead of a sack of letters.

Learning vector graphics using Inkscape

In the past few years, because of the websites and videos I was creating, I often needed to create graphics or edit sound or video files, and so I’d look around for some free but reliable software and pick up just enough skill to get my work done. For graphics, after some looking around, I mainly used GIMP and some amount of Microsoft Powerpoint, and I used these always used these packages with some specific end-product in mind. Recently, though, I decided to try out a vector graphics package just for the fun of it, and I chose Inkscape, a free vector graphics editor. Inkscape is open source (Wikipedia page in Inkscape here) and the software can be downloaded at their site here. One reason I wanted to try out Inkscape is that it is a vector drawing software, which means that the graphic remains okay on resizing. And Inkscape, …

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Mangalore museum, Gandhi letters

On a mini vacation to Mangalore, hubby and I decided to visit the museum there. The Shreemanti Bai Memorial Government Museum is located on a hill at Bejai in Mangalore, in a two-storied bungalow built by Colonel V R Mirajkar. The autorickshaw driver said he knew where the Bejai museum was (he often got fares for it), but he didn’t know a museum actually existed there (he thought it was just a name) 🙂 The first thing we noticed was a canon gun in front of a colonial style building, but the place seemed peaceful and inviting. There were no cars or buses in sight, no students jostling in queues for entrance. A small entrance room, one desk, no one seated there to greet visitors or demand fees. We stood there and looked around, and a woman emerged and smiled at us somewhat uncertainly. She confirmed the museum was open, …

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The plastic magnet tree

I was taking my morning walk at a very scenic place where the air was fresh, trees flanked the road, and birds flitted here and there. There was an overall sense of peace. Of vastness, of nature at its gentlest, relaxed. Here are some pictures. …

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On the convention that women should be (called) beautiful…

Everyone likes to look at beautiful things, and most people (men and women) assume that the best compliment to give to a woman is that she is beautiful. Other than when a person is downright-unbeautiful, people give such compliments. I consider this norm not just irrelevant but also somewhat shallow when given unsincerely, as a sort of knee-jerk reaction. It rarely involves noting the person’s expression or mood or character or actions. It’s just a token. As a child I was distinctly unbeautiful (as per the ruling conventions). (Still am, but it no longer matters to me). Persons who wanted to compliment me (on my looks, because when it comes to girls, that is what matters), would be stumped about what to say. They would, instead, dole out advice on how I could become beautiful. Daily facepacks with gram flour and cream and lemon? Avoid the sun? Clean the face …

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