Saturday, February 15, 2014

The Post-AAP Effect...Desparately Seeking A (Another) Mahatma …

During India’s Freedom Struggle….we had revolutionaries like Bhagat Singh who wanted Inquilab and then we had Subhash Chandra Bose who wanted Armed Struggle to uproot the British…

And then we also had a gentleman called M K Gandhi…who wanted a methodical (non violence was his tool but his method was sustained non-cooperation)….. 

I know I was not there during those days…

But seeing how its happening now (for ANOTHER equally emotional and powerful movement for Clean Politics)…I have renewed respect for the Mahatma….

Offcourse Bhagat Singh and Subhas Bose were needed …and most probably key factors in the end result…

But the one person who created the game-changing Sustainable movement was Gandhiji…. 

Having seen Mr Kejriwal…I find him more like Bhagat Singh (May be Anna Hazare is someone like Subhas Bose)….I will respect him in that way (hope History will have the same respect too)….

But all said and done…I am desparately searching for the Mahatma for this movement…

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Check your quizzing skills - on Crappy Celebrity Excuses

A Hilarious Set of Quiz Questions checking your knowledge of the crappy excuses Celebrities gave when caught in the "wrong act".

1 What excuse did Captain Schettino give for abandoning the Costa Concordia?
a) 'I was only obeying orders.’
b) 'Look, I’d been a having a bad a week, OK? My wife she was a giving me a hard a time back at home, and my mistress was a giving me a grief on the ship.’
c) 'I tripped and fell into a lifeboat.’
2 In 1975, Jeffrey Archer was accused of shoplifting two suits from a store in Toronto. What was his excuse?
a) 'I thought they were being charged to my account.’
b) 'I’d wandered into another shop through an interconnecting passage.’
c) 'Poppycock! I could afford to buy that store three times over, why would I want to steal their suits?’
3 What excuse did Jack Straw give for shaking the hand of the dictator Robert Mugabe at the UN in 2004?
a) 'He seemed like a nice man.’
b) 'It was quite dark.’
c) 'I thought he was Nelson Mandela.’
4 In 1999, a chauffeured car was used to transport John Prescott (left) and his wife 300 yards from their hotel to the venue of the Labour Party Conference, where Prescott gave a speech on how to encourage people to use public transport. His excuse?
a) 'We were late, now stop asking such daft, bloody questions.’
b) 'It was just an opportunity that presented in a limited way and that happened and as soon as we were there I didn’t deny it I just said 'that’s it’ and I had to go and explain it where they went out in.’
c) 'My wife doesn’t like her hair blown about.’
5 Which celebrity failed to report the alleged theft of his property with the excuse: 'The police, since my trouble, have not worked out for me.’
a) Tiger Woods
b) OJ Simpson
c) Woody Allen
6 Dick Cheney dodged the Vietnam draft in the Sixties. What excuse did he later come up with?
a) 'I had other priorities.’
b) 'I was a pacifist back then.’
c) 'I was exempt on account of my flat feet, and, er, my colour-blindness. Yeah, that’s right, I remember now. Colour blind. You can check my files.’
7 What excuse did the leading 'Stop Global Warming’ activist Laurie David give for flying in a private jet?
a) 'There were no other flights out of there that day.’
b) 'The truth is, I’m not perfect. This is not about perfection.’
c) 'Look it’s not my plane. It’s my husband Larry’s plane. Take it up with him.’
8 Which celebrity gave the excuse 'I didn’t have a professional bodyguard’ after failing to appear in court on a drug-possession charge?
a) Whitney Houston
b) Snoop Doggy Dog
c) Courtney Love
9 When Winona Ryder (left) was arrested in 2001 for shoplifting more than $5,500 worth of designer clothes and accessories from a store in Beverly Hills, what was her excuse?
a) 'I was doing research for my new movie.’
b) 'I was intending to pay for them but I got distracted.’
c) 'I thought they were giving them to me for free in return for an endorsement.’
10 'I was just giving her a ride home.’ Which film star gave this excuse after being pulled over by the police for picking up a transvestite prostitute?
a) Eddie Murphy
b) Charlie Sheen
c) Hugh Grant
11 In 1998, what excuse did the Labour MP Ron Davies give for going back to a stranger’s flat after meeting him late at night on Clapham Common, only to be mugged at knifepoint?
a) 'He said he had some etchings he wanted to show me.’
b) 'He invited me back for a meal.’
c) 'He said I could use his phone to report the theft of my wallet and mobile.’
12 When the Sri Lanka cricket team lost the 2001 ICC Champions Trophy final to Pakistan, what excuse did their captain Sanath Jayasuriya give?
a) 'There was bad light. The umpires admit they should have offered us the light.’
b) 'Our clothes were too tight.’
c) 'Shoaib Akhtar had been tampering with the ball.’
13 Liverpool goalkeeper David James came up with a bizarre excuse for letting in three goals against Newcastle in 1997. What was it?
a) 'I was getting carried away playing Tekken II and Tomb Raider for hours on end.’
b) 'My girlfriend distracted me.’
c) 'My gloves were too big.’
14 In 2003, five years after his 'moment of madness’ on Clapham Common, married MP Ron Davies was revealed as having visited a well-known gay cruising spot near a motorway lay-by. What excuse did he give for being there this time?
a) 'I was picking daffodils.’
b) 'I was asking for directions.’
c) 'I was badger-watching.’
15 What excuse did Janet Jackson give for exposing her breast during a dance routine with Justin Timberlake in the Super Bowl half-time show in 2004?
a) 'I did it to get some publicity because I have a new album out.’
b) 'That wasn’t my nipple, that was Justin’s thumb.’
c) 'It was a wardrobe malfunction.’
16 Which manager gave the following excuse when his team went 3-0 down: 'The jerseys were causing bad luck.’
a) Alex Ferguson
b) Harry Redknapp
c) Fabio Capello
17 In 1972, during the Vietnam War, Jane Fonda went on a trip to North Vietnam and was photographed wearing a helmet and sitting on an anti-aircraft gun that North Vietnamese forces otherwise used for shooting at American planes. How did she account for this?
a) 'Someone led me toward the gun and I sat down. It had nothing to do with where I was sitting. I hardly ever think about where I’m sitting. The cameras flashed.’
b) 'They kept calling me Hanoi Jane so I thought, what the heck, why don’t I start acting like Hanoi Jane?’
c) 'That was a gun? It didn’t even look like a gun. I thought it was some kinda big telescope.’
18 At the Masters snooker final at Wembley in 1997, Ronnie O’Sullivan built up an 8-3 lead, then lost seven straight games and the match. His excuse?
a) 'I had the wrong contact lenses in.’
b) 'A streaker broke my concentration.’
c) 'I suddenly realised what a pointless game snooker was and lost the will to carry on.’
19 What excuse did a naked and intoxicated Charlie Sheen (left) give in 2010 for smashing up his hotel room at The Plaza after a hard night’s partying?
a) 'I had an adverse allergic reaction to some medication.’
b) 'I was looking for the book I’m in the middle of reading. The Brothers Karamazov. Have you seen it anywhere?’
c) 'When the seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea.’
20 After Michael Jackson dangled his baby out of a hotel window, he gave what excuse?
a) 'I wanted to teach him that there is no need to fear heights.’
b) 'What can I say? We are the world. We can touch the sky.’
c) 'I got caught up in the excitement of the moment.’
21 When George Michael was arrested in 1998 for committing a lewd act in a public lavatory, what excuse did he give?
a) 'It comes from, I think, an abandonment issue... if I feel a mistrust, then... all my cards go down.’
b) 'I didn’t know it was a gents. Honestly. I thought it was an underground nightclub.’
c) 'The cop enticed me into a game of ''I’ll show you mine if you show me yours’’.’
22 Which sportsman, upon failing a blood test for doping, said: 'I have two kinds of blood because my twin died in utero’?
a) Olympic sprinter Ben Johnson
b) Olympic cyclist Tyler Hamilton
c) Olympic swimmer Michelle Smith
1) c, 2) b, 3) b, 4) c, 5) b, 6) a, 7) b, 8) c, 9) a, 10) a, 
11) b, 12) b, 13) a, 14) c, 15) c, 16) a, 17) a, 18) b, 
19) a, 20) c, 21) c, 22) b

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Rakesh Jhunjhunwala's - 10 Commandments of Investing

•Be an optimist! The necessary quality for investing success.
•Expect a realistic return. Balance fear and greed.

•Invest on broad parameters and the larger picture. Make it an act of wisdom, not intelligence.

•Caveat emptor. Never forget this four-letter word -R-I-S-K.

•Be disciplined. Have a game plan.

•Be flexible. For Investing is always in the realms of possibilities.

•Contrarian investing. Not a rule, not ruled out.

•Its important what you buy. It’s more important at what price you buy.

•Have conviction. Be patient. Your patience may be tested, but your conviction will be rewarded.

•Make exit an independent decision, not driven by profit or loss.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Is your computer “male” or “female”?

Found this wonderful little "pearl of knowledge" from my friend Raghavenrda Saboo's FB updates....
How can you confirm whether your BABY computer is a GIRL or a BOY....

Read's a simple 4 step process...

1. Open Notepad

2. Type the following line in notepad: CreateObject("SAPI.SpVoice").Speak"I love You"

3. Save file as computer_gender.vbs

4. Run the file (Make sure you are not on MUTE)

If you hear a male voice, it's a boy.

If you hear a female voice, it's a girl!..

Now...Geeks will know what I'm talking about....the SAPI thing is a "giveaway"...still a harmless little fun for a Dull Monday Morning...

So much for today....

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Are Entrepreneurs BORN...or MADE?


Encountered this question in a LinkedIn group....Lot of interesting ideas from some very talented folks...
Thought it would be nice to add my 2 cents to the burgeoning treasury...
So here's Ani's answer to the Q....

They are NEITHER Born NOR Made...

IMHO....they GERMINATE....

to draw an analogy....

ALL of us (people of the world) are like seeds (millions...with unlimited potential but blissfully dormant)

...MOST of us go wasted (die and get dried in the compressor of life), SOME get eaten by animals

.....and SOME lucky ones get dropped in soil...

........a FEW of them find the the right atmosphere (air, sunshine and

............and when ALL THESE factors are optimal (i.e incubator of life)

...............ONLY A FEW of these germinate to become saplings (budding entreprenneurs)....

...................again only a FEW of THESE grow and become saplings (eager to grow and conquer the world)

.............................and a very few can become HUGE Trees
....................................(that can create new seeds)......

What do think of this take....cryptic.....crazy....coool....
I felt it was a nice metaphorical take on the entrepreneurial journey....after all only 1 in 1000 take the jump and 1 in 100000 get the success...pretty the same ration of seeds becoming trees

So much for today


Sunday, February 20, 2011

35 Revolutions (Around the Sun) – A Short Journey by Ani

What would be the Table of Content of the My Autobiography (if I wrote...EVER) -

This was one of the questions asked in an MBA application....
It was one of the best essays that I had to write...made me think in a different way...
How could you summarise your journey in less than 1000 words...'s a shot at it...

35 Revolutions (Around the Sun) – A Short Journey by Ani
1) Prologue – An Interview Of Life

2) 1975 – The 13th of December

3) Growing up in the Ruhr of India…West Bengal in the staid 80’s

4) Search the Ticket to Excellence… all round academics

5) Here comes the Tabla Maestro….Enthalling and enthralled..

6) With Fame comes Hype – The invincible quizzer

7) 1991 – A New India in born…Liberalization from past…

8) The winds of change…and how they rock you…

9) The higher you rise….the harder you fall

10) Fighting the Personal Demons…one at a time

11) Poetry is the best friend of the loner…the fighter…the dreamer

12) The Miner finds a Stone…Diamond?

13) Meet the Mine Manager…in the jungles of India

14) Refocus…Aim…Dream…Jump

15) IT is the key in IIIT...and Bangalore is the Key to India

16) Studying with scholarships…making it a habit

17) Open your Heart to Me…Thanks Yahoo Messenger

18) GE and I…Made for each other

19) 9/11 and the Accidental Leader

20) Six Sigma in good…until you show the Ugly Truth..

21) US Beckons…Greenville Embraces

22) An Indian in the Redneck land

23) Marriage with a 2 year Honeymoon…

24) Chasing the 4 Es (Edge, Energy, Energizing Execution)…

25) Change is the only constant…in GE...

26) The Cycles of failures and successes…keep rolling

27) Bring back the leadership to India

28) Agile…The Game Changer….The Life Catalyst

29) The Biggest Project Failure…The Biggest People Success..

30) Decide before you jump!!

31) You can keep everything locked…what if you lost the KEY

32) A Day in the Life of DATA…Lost…Found…Protected…

33) SOA…to Cloud…via virtualization

34) “Jao Pakhi”…I Believe I Can Fly…

35) The Leadership Pipeline….the stairs to the journey…

So much for today....

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

On "Command and Control" in Agile Methods

Someone asked - Why does Agile/Scrum suggest Servant Leadership and No Command and Control management....Another person asked recently....Can we really do without command and control in Scrum...
Worse still...someone made a statement...this concept about NO Command and Control in Scrum in just can't deliver Software without CONTROL...

Been thinking....are we taking 2 extreme sides here....ultimately came with my it is..

Ultimately we all know that "Command and Control" is a Time Tested management technique used to "Balance between Constraints".
As Mr Pressman has been teaching us for long, in software development, managers need to balance the iron triangle of Time, Scope and Resource (i.e PEOPLE)...also Quality...but then that's non negotiable :-)

With this context let's relook at any Agile model (Scrum/XP/DSDM) that highlights the principle of NOT using Command and Control (explicit or implicit)...I think there is a "fine print" here...

What Agile/Scrum postulates is NOT to use command and control on PEOPLE...i.e one of the constraints (resources) the same time the idea IS to have command and control on the other 2 constraints i.e Scope and Time...

1) The way Scrum/Agile puts command and control on Scope is by ALWAYS having a prioritized Backlog and fixing the Sprint/Iteration Scope at the start of sprints....The PRODUCT OWNER has total command and control on the Backlog and the sprint team commands the scope.
2) The way it puts command and control on Time is by Timeboxing the sprint AND the ceremonies in sprints...The TEAM (PO, SM and Team) has complete Command and control on this Timebox.

SO according to me Agile methods like Scrum/XP etc  (with its emphasis on people) have explicitly taken away the control on people but equally explicitly places a tight control on scope and time....

Friends who believe some control is needed for SW delivery....the answer is taking away one control completely AND simultaneously putting explicit/total control on the other two, Agile basically empowers the team with more"usable" and "beneficial" control...
Even though most Agile methods are empirical there is definitely some scientific method is this perceived model (methods in the madness!!).
Remember Boyle's Law in Physics (PV=RT)...if we have 3 variables then you cannot control all 3 of them, your best bet is to control (or fix) 2 so that you can allow the 3rd to obviously you will provide tge freedom to the most important (priceless) component ..PEOPLE...Don't control them ...rather control your other 2 variables...and that's the People Centric Work Paradigm....

So much for now...let me think on this theory to see if there are any chinks :-)

Monday, August 9, 2010

Answering some queries on Agile

I joined a groupsite (AgileBangalore) sometime has been an exciting experience till now....collaborating with fellow Agile enthusiasts, discussing Agile issues/experiences....overtime I have answered a few queries in the groupsite...thought of collating some of those and publishing here..

Question: I am a software tools engineer. How agail and/or scrum helps me to become better tools engineer? (

Ani's Take: Agile is an umbrella term (collection of different names but similar processes based on same principles..e.g: Scrum, XP, DSDM, Crystal, Lean SW Dev etc)....all of them espouse certain human-centered management processes/framework...some of them (like XP) go further and suggest Engineering Best Practices to adopt (e.g: Unit Testing and TDD, Continous Integration/Build and Config Mgmt, Automated Testing etc)...
Nearly all Agile practices will need some or all of these practices to succeed and these will in turn demand skilled artisans/craftsmen to implement via if you joined the Agile revolution to enhance your ability in this direction, your best bet will be to investigate these...(try googling "software craftsmanship" and you'll get lot of starters)...
However I want to give a caveat....Agile DOESNOT espouse Tools and Automation for any human-centered interactions (you can still use them but in my experience they are rightly used only by mature teams).....
So if your idea of using tools is to get status updates I would not support that since by doing so you are going to sap the spirit of the daily scrum...your best tools to manage these would be whiteboards, excel files (and for mature teams some lightweight manegement tools like VersionOne, RallyDev, Mingle etc.
Lastly, you can still use some tools to capture metrics ...follow the same rule...try and focus metrics on the work and not the you can use tools for code review, defect management, static code analysis...all these will enable better agile team spirit...don't focus on tools to captures things like - the time taken to complere stories (unless mandated by mgmt), variance in productivity between team members etc etc..

Question: Generally people believe that Agile doesn't require documentation or doenn't support documentation. How much documentation do you use in your agile projects? What has worked well for you, and what hasn't? (

Ani's Take: There are 2 types to documentation (and the Agile principle is minimal but sufficient documentations)
1) Documents supporting delivery to external customers (this can be Release notes, User guides, Admin guides etc)....I don't think there is any scope of reducing this type of documentation

2) Documentation supporting internal delivery - e.g: Status Reports, Meeting Minutes, Specification documents (Use Cases Diagram, Functional Specs, Tech Specs etc etc)...again sometime a few of these are mandated (in service companies, clients may ask for this before transition to support)...

However the Agile principle should be to question the need and detail needed for each and take the minimum but sufficient approach...e.g: If client wants a Use Case diagram before the transition, I will take the following approach...thruout dev cycle I will NOT manage any document but rely on .MDL files to manage by user cases, classes, sequence diagrams etc and in the last sprint keep a story item to create a use case that time the components of the mdl file would be stable and it would be easy to create the document (in fact tools like Rational Rose may just create it for you)...Similarly I will NOT waste time on multiple status reports (no reports of scrum meetings etc), however make sure the team is capturing the relevant and important "conversations" in some sort of documents...

Bottom line....Agile is not for NO documentation it's for any documentation that has a purpose AND the simplest way to deliver those...

Question: As per your experience provide the details of key challanges you faced at your organization/project etc? (

Ani's Take: IMHO challenges in Agile Adoption can be at three levels

1) Higher Management Level challenges
i) If Agile was thought of as a silver bullet that will fix all issues, it causes problems since Agile on the other hand has a great knack of bringing forth the hiddne orgnanization issues (e.g: manager's tendency to command and control, no preparedness in Test Automation)
ii) Agile needs cross functional collaboaration which sometimes can open a can of worms in a strictly Functional Org (Mgmt needs to subscribe to matrix organizations)
iii) Management dictats (need metrics from teams, need to compare productivity from diff teams etc) can be misinterpreted by teams or can be mis-directional to Agile principles.

2) Mid Management Level (level of Functional managers who are assigned to drive Agile Adoption)
i) Not understanding the essence of Agile may lead to modifying Agile wrongly (What we call as Scrumbuts)...e.g: Functional managers tend to attend Scrum meetings and it ends up being status meeting AND team stop talking between themselves since now they are escalating issues to respective managers and they are discussing issues at their level...
ii) Not having or consulting Agile Coaches leads to combining Agile with Waterfall practices (e.g: Let's use Sprints 1 and 2 for Designing only)...We popularly hear terms like Scrummerfall (Try googling to get case studies...have seen in my experience too)
iii) This layer feels insecure (specially when there are no coaches OR senior mgmt is not clear in communicating) about their diminished role in day to day activities (loss of command) and hence resist Agile adoption using hidden or clear obstacles.

3) Team level
i) I have seen that teams are normally the least part of the problem....IF they are properly guided by a strong ScrumMaster/Coach in the initial part of agile (Guidance is not just theory...but providing the RIGHT hands on advice as an when needed)...however sometimes teams face issues in understanding "self - organization" and tend to depend on managers for decision making
ii) In few cases (not many) I have seen some team members who have come from successful Waterfall/Iterative implementations, resist Agile (too fast, too risky, too pressure).....acc to me these were symptoms of other problems (most probably they were insecure in some way, or may be didn't understand the tenets of Agile clearly).
iii) Product Owners - Unfortunately the spread of scrum has produced very good ScrumMasters (training, guidance etc)....but there are not many mature product owners (simply because there are not enough mentors, guidance or training for them)...I believe POs are the most complex role (they face the maximum change in work process) and hence if not guided or trained they will not succeed and put the teams at risk
iv) SMs - There are lot of SMs but not many who really can mentor the team, push back on outside interference AND be a true "servant leader"....SMs tend to become PMs (unfortunately due to environments or lack of coaching).

So much for now....will add some queries and my 2 cents on them later...ciao

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Stay Hungry, Stay foolish - Steve Jobs

HERE IS A SPEECH DELIVERED BY STEVE JOBS...The Best I have heard from a Leader...EVER (and that's a toll Order)

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I've ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life.

That's it. No big deal.
Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots. I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out? It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: "We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?" They said: "Of course." My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents' savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn't see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn't interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn't all romantic. I didn't have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends' rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with. And I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on.

Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn't have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can't capture, and I found it fascinating. None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, its likely that no personal computer would have them.
If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later. Again, you can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something - your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss.

I was lucky - I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parent’s garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation - the Macintosh - a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out.When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.

I really didn't know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down - that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.

I didn't see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.

During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the worlds first computer animated feature film, Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT, I retuned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple's current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.
I'm pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn't been fired from Apple. It was a awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it.

Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don't lose faith. I'm convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You've got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don't settle.

My third story is about death.

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: "If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you'll most certainly be right." It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: "If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?" And whenever the answer has been "No" for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure - these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn't even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor's code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you'd have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.

I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I'm fine now. This was the closest I've been to facing death, and I hope its the closest I get for a few more decades.

Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life's change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true. Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life. Don't be trapped by dogma - which is living with the results of other people's thinking. Don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your own inner voice.

And most important - have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960's, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: "Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish."

It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Thank you all very much.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Art of Appraisal

Big Boss: This year your performance was good, excellent and outstanding. So, your rating is "average".

Kumar: What? How come 'average'?

Big Boss: lack domain knowledge.

Kumar: But last year you said I am a domain expert and you put me in this project as a domain consultant.

Big Boss: Oh is it? Well, in that case, I think your domain knowledge has eroded this year.

Kumar: What???

Big Boss: Yes, I didn't see you sharing knowledge on Purchasing domain.

Kumar: Why would I? Because I am not in Purchasing, I am in Manufacturing.

Big Boss: This is what I don't like about you. You give excuse for everything.

Kumar: Huh? *Confused*

Big Boss: Next, you need to improve your communication skills.

Kumar: Like what? I am the one who trained the team on "Business Communication", you sat in the audience and took notes, you remember?

Big Boss: Oh is it? Errr...well..I mean, you need to improve your Social Pragmatic Affirmative Communication.

Kumar: Huh? What the hell is that? *Confused*

Big Boss: See! That's why you need to learn about it.

Kumar: *head spinning*

Big Boss: Next, you need to sharpen your recruiting skills. All the guys you recruited left within 2 months.

Kumar: Well, not my mistake. You told them you will sit beside them and review their code, and most resigned the next day itself. Couple of them even attempted suicide.

Big Boss:*stunned* (recovers from shock) Err...anyway, I tried to give you a better rating, but our Normalization process gave you only 'average'.

Kumar: Last year that process gave me 'excellent'. This year just 'average'? Why is this process pushing me up and down every year?

Boss: That's a complicated process. You don't want to hear.

Kumar: I'll try to understand. Go ahead.

Big Boss: Well, we gather in a large room, write down the names of sub-ordinates in bits of paper, and throw them up in the air. Whichever lands on the floor gets 'average', whichever lands on table gets 'good', whichever we manage to catch gets 'excellent' and whichever gets stuck toceiling gets 'outstanding'.

Kumar: (eyes popping out) What? Ridiculous! So who gets 'poor' rating?

Big Boss: Those are the ones we forget to write down.

Kumar: What the hell! And how can paper bits stick to ceiling for 'outstanding'?

Big Boss: Oh no, now you have started questioning our 20 year old organizational process!

Kumar: *faints*

Friday, November 27, 2009

Bollywood stars in FRIENDS movie ... who is who??? Here is my pick.

Hey ... we all know the Friends couldn't have been FRIENDS without the wonderful star cast but ifffffff Bollywood is coming up with a movie on Friends then here is my suggestion for the star cast (explanation given like a good designer .. :-) )
1) Joey - John Abraham (Think Dostana - Joey's character needs brawn and dumbness)
2) Chandler - Abhishek Bachchan (Again...think Dostana)
3) Ross - Irrfan Khan (Toughest role to cast....the character needs tremendous self depreciation and crankyness...Irrfan suits...Think Metro)
4) Monica - Lara Dutta (Think No Entry....this role needs a tough and obsessive-ness that Lara Dutta has in oodles)
5) Rachel - Priyanka Chopra (Classy...saucy....nerdy...stylo...what else do u need)
6) Phoebe - Mallika Sherawat (Hmmmmm.....the fun casting...She can be the star....she has the crazy, dumb, simpleton, tough-cookie combo)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Deming's 14 Points of Management:

1. Create constancy of purpose toward improvement of product and service, with the aim to become competitive and to stay in business, and to provide jobs.

At this new economic era the key is competitiveness. The markets are global, are worldwide and if you intend to stay in business, you need to be competitive. To be competitive, the best way is to improve the products or services you offer. But not only improve one time, you need to be constantly improved in order to offer the best of a kind in products or services. Today, an American company competes against not only Japanese but Canadian, Mexican, European,etc. To be successful a firm must be competitive.

2. Adopt the new philosophy. We are in a new economic age. Western management must awaken to the challenge, must learn their responsibilities, and take on leadership for change.

The Western management certainly is behind the Oriental management. We are in a new economic era with more competition, Global markets, technology improvements, and the challenge is huge. American companies and American people need to adopt a new philosophy considering cost reduction, team work, quality and leadership. If we do not, we will see other countries taking advantage from us and our industry.

3. Cease dependence on inspection to achieve quality. Eliminate the need for inspection on a mass basis by building quality into the product in the first place.

The first thing we need to change is our thinking. To achieve quality does not mean inspection 100%. Inspection costs are high and we need cost reduction. Inspection takes timeand we are looking for better timing, better delivery.

We have to think in quality on Product Design not at the end of the production process but at the very beginning: when a product or service is designed. Quality assurance must be considered since the first stage of production; and probably at the end of the process no inspection will be necessary.

4. End the practice of awarding business on the basis of price tag. Instead, minimize total cost.

Move towarda single supplier for any one item, on a long-term relationship of loyalty and trust. To be competitive it is very important to have lower costs. We have to minimize total cost; not only the price. Remember that defective units are cost; delay in delivery is cost, excessive inventory is cost, etc. To minimize total cost long-term relationship with suppliers is really important. If you as a customer help your supplier to develop, to improve the quality, you will receive better products so you will win and your supplier too.

5. Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus constantly decrease costs.

As discussed in the previous point, the total costs involved in the production/service system are high. Continuous improvements in the system will help lower costs through increased productivity and efficiency. This, in turn, should help keep the costs manageable.

6. Institute training on the job.

The Deming video noted that there is a difference between education and training. Management should recognize this and provide the necessary training to their employees. Training should also be ongoing. Continuous improvement of the work force will contribute greatly to the success of the organization.

7. Institute leadership.

The aim of supervision should be to help people and machines and gadgets to do a better job. Supervision of management is in need of overhaul as well as supervision of production workers. Leadership empowers everyone. It promotes excellence in everything "we" do. Deming suggests that through leadership at all levels, the organization will be able to achieve success. The old style of management is out.

8. Drive out fear, so that everyone may work effectively for the company.

Fear is both a motivator and de-motivator. Fear motivates, only to the extent that the "job" is done to avoid repercussions. it serves as a greater demotivator as it oppresses individuals creativity. Ultimately the organization suffers in such a negative atmosphere.

9. Break down barriers between departments.

People in research, design, sales, and production must work as a team, to foresee problems of production and in use that may be encountered with the product or service. Barriers impede sharing and cooperation. Organizations today should eliminate the "department barriers" that isolate employees. This isolation inhibits team play that is an essential element for organizational success today. The "team" philosophy can be used outside of sports to create the same cohesiveness within organizations that champion sports teams possess.

10. Eliminate slogans, exhortations, and targets for the work force asking for zero defects and new levels of productivity.

Such exhortations only create adversarial relationships, as the bulk of the causes of quality and low productivity belong to the system and thus lie beyond the power of the work force. Building quality into operation eliminates the uses of slogans and targets because of continuous organizational improvements.

11. Eliminate work standards (quotas) on the factory floor. Substitute leadership.

Improve operation skills and eliminating quotas will allow employees to experience different tasks on their job. By implementing some of these, employees will feel productive, therefore, will contribute more to the organization. Eliminate methods can improve product and services quality. Methods are operating systems used by the organization during the actual transformation process.

12. Create Pride in the job being done.

1. Remove barriers that rob the hourly worker of his right to pride of workers of his right to pride of workmanship. The responsibility of supervisors must be changed from sheer numbers to quality. All successful quality enhancement programs involve making the person responsible for doing the job responsible for making sure it is done right. Then employment involvement is a critical component in improving quality.

2. Remove barriers that rob people in management and engineering of their right to pride of workmanship. This means, inter alia, abolishment of the annual merit rating and of management by objective.

13. Institute a vigorous program of education and self-improvement.

Increasing the flexibility of an organization's work force by training employees to perform a number of different jobs. For instance, cross training allows the firms to function with fewer workers, because workers can be transferred easily to areas where they are most needed.

14. Put everybody in the company to work to accomplish the transformation.

The transformation is everybody's job. The involvement might range form an individual worker being given a bigger voice in how she or he does the job, to a formal agreement of cooperation between management and labor, to total involvement throughout the organization. Take action.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

A List of Useful Excel Shortcuts

Ctrl+A Select All None

Ctrl+B Bold Format, Cells, Font, Font Style, Bold

Ctrl+C Copy Edit, Copy

Ctrl+D Fill Down Edit, Fill, Down

Ctrl+F Find Edit, Find

Ctrl+G Goto Edit, Goto

Ctrl+H Replace Edit, Replace

Ctrl+I Italic Format, Cells, Font, Font Style, Italic

Ctrl+K Insert Hyperlink Insert, Hyperlink

Ctrl+N New Workbook File, New

Ctrl+O Open File, Open

Ctrl+P Print File, Print

Ctrl+R Fill Right Edit, Fill Right

Ctrl+S Save File, Save

Ctrl+U Underline Format, Cells, Font, Underline, Single

Ctrl+V Paste Edit, Paste

Ctrl W Close File, Close

Ctrl+X Cut Edit, Cut

Ctrl+Y Repeat Edit, Repeat

Ctrl+Z Undo Edit, Undo

F1 Help Help, Contents and Index

F2 Edit None

F3 Paste Name Insert, Name, Paste

F4 Repeat last action Edit, Repeat. Works while not in Edit mode.

F4 While typing a formula, switch between absolute/relative refs None

F5 Goto Edit, Goto

F6 Next Pane None

F7 Spell check Tools, Spelling

F8 Extend mode None

F9 Recalculate all workbooks Tools, Options, Calculation, Calc,Now

F10 Activate Menubar N/A

F11 New Chart Insert, Chart

F12 Save As File, Save As

Ctrl+: Insert Current Time None

Ctrl+; Insert Current Date None

Ctrl+" Copy Value from Cell Above Edit, Paste Special, Value

Ctrl+’ Copy Fromula from Cell Above Edit, Copy

Shift Hold down shift for additional functions in Excel’s menu none

Shift+F1 What’s This? Help, What’s This?

Shift+F2 Edit cell comment Insert, Edit Comments

Shift+F3 Paste function into formula Insert, Function

Shift+F4 Find Next Edit, Find, Find Next

Shift+F5 Find Edit, Find, Find Next

Shift+F6 Previous Pane None

Shift+F8 Add to selection None

Shift+F9 Calculate active worksheet Calc Sheet

Shift+F10 Display shortcut menu None

Shift+F11 New worksheet Insert, Worksheet

Shift+F12 Save File, Save

Ctrl+F3 Define name Insert, Names, Define

Ctrl+F4 Close File, Close

Ctrl+F5 XL, Restore window size Restore

Ctrl+F6 Next workbook window Window, ...

Shift+Ctrl+F6 Previous workbook window Window, ...

Ctrl+F7 Move window XL, Move

Ctrl+F8 Resize window XL, Size

Ctrl+F9 Minimize workbook XL, Minimize

Ctrl+F10 Maximize or restore window XL, Maximize

Ctrl+F11 Inset 4.0 Macro sheet None in Excel 97. In versions prior to 97 - Insert, Macro, 4.0 Macro

Ctrl+F12 File Open File, Open

Alt+F1 Insert Chart Insert, Chart...

Alt+F2 Save As File, Save As

Alt+F4 Exit File, Exit

Alt+F8 Macro dialog box Tools, Macro, Macros in Excel 97 Tools,Macros - in earlier versions

Alt+F11 Visual Basic Editor Tools, Macro, Visual Basic Editor

Ctrl+Shift+F3 Create name by using names of row and column labels Insert, Name, Create

Ctrl+Shift+F6 Previous Window Window, ...

Ctrl+Shift+F12 Print File, Print

Alt+Shift+F1 New worksheet Insert, Worksheet

Alt+Shift+F2 Save File, Save

Alt+= AutoSum No direct equivalent

Ctrl+` Toggle Value/Formula display Tools, Options, View, Formulas

Ctrl+Shift+A Insert argument names into formula No direct equivalent

Alt+Down arrow Display AutoComplete list None

Alt+’ Format Style dialog box Format, Style

Ctrl+Shift+~ General format Format, Cells, Number, Category, General

Ctrl+Shift+! Comma format Format, Cells, Number, Category, Number

Ctrl+Shift+@ Time format Format, Cells, Number, Category, Time

Ctrl+Shift+# Date format Format, Cells, Number, Category, Date

Ctrl+Shift+$ Currency format Format, Cells, Number, Category, Currency

Ctrl+Shift+% Percent format Format, Cells, Number, Category, Percentage

Ctrl+Shift+^ Exponential format Format, Cells, Number, Category,

Ctrl+Shift+& Place outline border around selected cells Format, Cells, Border

Ctrl+Shift+_ Remove outline border Format, Cells, Border

Ctrl+Shift+* Select current region Edit, Goto, Special, Current Region

Ctrl++ Insert Insert, (Rows, Columns, or Cells) Depends on selection

Ctrl+- Delete Delete, (Rows, Columns, or Cells) Depends on selection

Ctrl+1 Format cells dialog box Format, Cells

Ctrl+2 Bold Format, Cells, Font, Font Style, Bold

Ctrl+3 Italic Format, Cells, Font, Font Style, Italic

Ctrl+4 Underline Format, Cells, Font, Font Style, Underline

Ctrl+5 Strikethrough Format, Cells, Font, Effects, Strikethrough

Ctrl+6 Show/Hide objects Tools, Options, View, Objects, Show All/Hide

Ctrl+7 Show/Hide Standard toolbar View, Toolbars, Stardard

Ctrl+8 Toggle Outline symbols None

Ctrl+9 Hide rows Format, Row, Hide

Ctrl+0 Hide columns Format, Column, Hide

Ctrl+Shift+( Unhide rows Format, Row, Unhide

Ctrl+Shift+) Unhide columns Format, Column, Unhide

Alt or F10 Activate the menu None

Ctrl+Tab In toolbar: next toolbar None

Shift+Ctrl+Tab In toolbar: previous toolbar None

Ctrl+Tab In a workbook: activate next workbook None

Shift+Ctrl+Tab In a workbook: activate previous workbook None

Tab Next tool None

Shift+Tab Previous tool None

Enter Do the command None

Shift+Ctrl+F Font Drop Down List Format, Cells, Font

Shift+Ctrl+F+F Font tab of Format Cell Dialog box Format, Cells, Font

Shift+Ctrl+P Point size Drop Down List Format, Cells, Font

- CTRL combination shortcut keys -

- Key Description -

CTRL+( Unhides any hidden rows within the selection.

CTRL+) Unhides any hidden columns within the selection.

CTRL+& Applies the outline border to the selected cells.

CTRL+_ Removes the outline border from the selected cells.

CTRL+~ Applies the General number format.

CTRL+$ Applies the Currency format with two decimal places (negative numbers in parentheses).

CTRL+% Applies the Percentage format with no decimal places.

CTRL+^ Applies the Exponential number format with two decimal places.

CTRL+# Applies the Date format with the day, month, and year.

CTRL+@ Applies the Time format with the hour and minute, and AM or PM.

CTRL+! Applies the Number format with two decimal places, thousands separator, and minus sign (-) for negative values.

CTRL+- Displays the Delete dialog box to delete the selected cells.

CTRL+* Selects the current region around the active cell (the data area enclosed by blank rows and blank columns).

In a PivotTable, it selects the entire PivotTable report.

CTRL+: Enters the current time.

CTRL+; Enters the current date.

CTRL+` Alternates between displaying cell values and displaying formulas in the worksheet.

CTRL+' Copies a formula from the cell above the active cell into the cell or the Formula Bar.

CTRL+" Copies the value from the cell above the active cell into the cell or the Formula Bar.

CTRL++ Displays the Insert dialog box to insert blank cells.

CTRL+1 Displays the Format Cells dialog box.

CTRL+2 Applies or removes bold formatting.

CTRL+3 Applies or removes italic formatting.

CTRL+4 Applies or removes underlining.

CTRL+5 Applies or removes strikethrough.

CTRL+6 Alternates between hiding objects, displaying objects, and displaying placeholders for objects.

CTRL+7 Displays or hides the Standard toolbar.

CTRL+8 Displays or hides the outline symbols.

CTRL+9 Hides the selected rows.

CTRL+0 Hides the selected columns.

CTRL+A Selects the entire worksheet.

If the worksheet contains data, CTRL+A selects the current region. Pressing CTRL+A a second time selects the entire worksheet.

When the insertion point is to the right of a function name in a formula, displays the Function Arguments dialog box.

CTRL+SHIFT+A inserts the argument names and parentheses when the insertion point is to the right of a function name in a formula.

CTRL+B Applies or removes bold formatting.

CTRL+C Copies the selected cells.

CTRL+C followed by another CTRL+C displays the Microsoft Office Clipboard.

CTRL+D Uses the Fill Down command to copy the contents and format of the topmost cell of a selected range into the cells below.

CTRL+F Displays the Find dialog box.

SHIFT+F5 also displays this dialog box, while SHIFT+F4 repeats the last Find action.

CTRL+G Displays the Go To dialog box.

F5 also displays this dialog box.

CTRL+H Displays the Find and Replace dialog box.

CTRL+I Applies or removes italic formatting.

CTRL+K Displays the Insert Hyperlink dialog box for new hyperlinks or the Edit Hyperlink dialog box for selected existing hyperlinks.

CTRL+L Displays the Create List dialog box.

CTRL+N Creates a new, blank file.

CTRL+O Displays the Open dialog box to open or find a file.

CTRL+SHIFT+O selects all cells that contain comments.

CTRL+P Displays the Print dialog box.

CTRL+R Uses the Fill Right command to copy the contents and format of the leftmost cell of a selected range into the cells to the right.

CTRL+S Saves the active file with its current file name, location, and file format.

CTRL+U Applies or removes underlining.

CTRL+V Inserts the contents of the Clipboard at the insertion point and replaces any selection. Available only after you cut or copied an object, text, or cell contents.

CTRL+W Closes the selected workbook window.

CTRL+X Cuts the selected cells.

CTRL+Y Repeats the last command or action, if possible.

CTRL+Z Uses the Undo command to reverse the last command or to delete the last entry you typed.

CTRL+SHIFT+Z uses the Undo or Redo command to reverse or restore the last automatic correction when AutoCorrect Smart Tags are displayed.

- Function keys -

F1 Displays the Help task pane.

CTRL+F1 closes and reopens the current task pane.

ALT+F1 creates a chart of the data in the current range.

ALT+SHIFT+F1 inserts a new worksheet.

F2 Edits the active cell and positions the insertion point at the end of the cell contents. It also moves the insertion point into the Formula Bar when editing in a cell is turned off.

SHIFT+F2 edits a cell comment.

F3 Pastes a defined name into a formula.

SHIFT+F3 displays the Insert Function dialog box.

F4 Repeats the last command or action, if possible.

CTRL+F4 closes the selected workbook window.

F5 Displays the Go To dialog box.

CTRL+F5 restores the window size of the selected workbook window.

F6 Switches to the next pane in a worksheet that has been split (Window menu, Split command).

SHIFT+F6 switches to the previous pane in a worksheet that has been split.

CTRL+F6 switches to the next workbook window when more than one workbook window is open.

Note When the task pane is visible, F6 and SHIFT+F6 include that pane when switching between panes.

F7 Displays the Spelling dialog box to check spelling in the active worksheet or selected range.

CTRL+F7 performs the Move command on the workbook window when it is not maximized. Use the arrow keys to move the window, and when finished press ESC.

F8 Turns extend mode on or off. In extend mode, EXT appears in the status line, and the arrow keys extend the selection.

SHIFT+F8 enables you to add a non-adjacent cell or range to a selection of cells by using the arrow keys.

CTRL+F8 performs the Size command (on the Control menu for the workbook window) when a workbook is not maximized.

ALT+F8 displays the Macro dialog box to run, edit, or delete a macro.

F9 Calculates all worksheets in all open workbooks.

F9 followed by ENTER (or followed by CTRL+SHIFT+ENTER for array formulas) calculates the selected a portion of a formula and replaces the selected portion with the calculated value.

SHIFT+F9 calculates the active worksheet.

CTRL+ALT+F9 calculates all worksheets in all open workbooks, regardless of whether they have changed since the last calculation.

CTRL+ALT+SHIFT+F9 rechecks dependent formulas, and then calculates all cells in all open workbooks, including cells not marked as needing to be calculated.

CTRL+F9 minimizes a workbook window to an icon.

F10 Selects the menu bar or closes an open menu and submenu at the same time.

SHIFT+F10 displays the shortcut menu for a selected item.

ALT+SHIFT+F10 displays the menu or message for a smart tag. If more than one smart tag is present, it switches to the next smart tag and displays its menu or message.

CTRL+F10 maximizes or restores the selected workbook window.

F11 Creates a chart of the data in the current range.

SHIFT+F11 inserts a new worksheet.

ALT+F11 opens the Visual Basic Editor, in which you can create a macro by using Visual Basic for Applications (VBA).

ALT+SHIFT+F11 opens the Microsoft Script Editor, where you can add text, edit HTML tags, and modify any script code.

F12 Displays the Save As dialog box.

- Other useful shortcut keys -

ARROW KEYS Move one cell up, down, left, or right in a worksheet.

CTRL+ARROW KEY moves to the edge of the current data region (data region: A range of cells that contains data and that is bounded by empty cells or datasheet borders.) in a worksheet.

SHIFT+ARROW KEY extends the selection of cells by one cell.

CTRL+SHIFT+ARROW KEY extends the selection of cells to the last nonblank cell in the same column or row as the active cell.

LEFT ARROW or RIGHT ARROW selects the menu to the left or right when a menu is visible. When a submenu is open, these arrow keys switch between the main menu and the submenu.

DOWN ARROW or UP ARROW selects the next or previous command when a menu or submenu is open.

In a dialog box, arrow keys move between options in an open drop-down list, or between options in a group of options.

ALT+DOWN ARROW opens a selected drop-down list.

BACKSPACE Deletes one character to the left in the Formula Bar.

Also clears the content of the active cell.

DELETE Removes the cell contents (data and formulas) from selected cells without affecting cell formats or comments.

In cell editing mode, it deletes the character to the right of the insertion point.

END Moves to the cell in the lower-right corner of the window when SCROLL LOCK is turned on.

Also selects the last command on the menu when a menu or submenu is visible.

CTRL+END moves to the last cell on a worksheet, in the lowest used row of the rightmost used column.

CTRL+SHIFT+END extends the selection of cells to the last used cell on the worksheet (lower-right corner).

ENTER Completes a cell entry from the cell or the Formula Bar, and selects the cell below (by default).

In a data form, it moves to the first field in the next record.

Opens a selected menu (press F10 to activate the menu bar) or performs the action for a selected command.

In a dialog box, it performs the action for the default command button in the dialog box (the button with the bold outline, often the OK button).

ALT+ENTER starts a new line in the same cell.

CTRL+ENTER fills the selected cell range with the current entry.

SHIFT+ENTER completes a cell entry and selects the cell above.

ESC Cancels an entry in the cell or Formula Bar.

It also closes an open menu or submenu, dialog box, or message window.

HOME Moves to the beginning of a row in a worksheet.

Moves to the cell in the upper-left corner of the window when SCROLL LOCK is turned on.

Selects the first command on the menu when a menu or submenu is visible.

CTRL+HOME moves to the beginning of a worksheet.

CTRL+SHIFT+HOME extends the selection of cells to the beginning of the worksheet.

PAGE DOWN Moves one screen down in a worksheet.

ALT+PAGE DOWN moves one screen to the right in a worksheet.

CTRL+PAGE DOWN moves to the next sheet in a workbook.

CTRL+SHIFT+PAGE DOWN selects the current and next sheet in a workbook.

PAGE UP Moves one screen up in a worksheet.

ALT+PAGE UP moves one screen to the left in a worksheet.

CTRL+PAGE UP moves to the previous sheet in a workbook.

CTRL+SHIFT+PAGE UP selects the current and previous sheet in a workbook.

SPACEBAR In a dialog box, performs the action for the selected button, or selects or clears a check box.

CTRL+SPACEBAR selects an entire column in a worksheet.

SHIFT+SPACEBAR selects an entire row in a worksheet.

CTRL+SHIFT+SPACEBAR selects the entire worksheet.

If the worksheet contains data, CTRL+SHIFT+SPACEBAR selects the current region. Pressing CTRL+SHIFT+SPACEBAR a second time selects the entire worksheet.

When an object is selected, CTRL+SHIFT+SPACEBAR selects all objects on a worksheet.

ALT+SPACEBAR displays the Control menu for the Excel window.

TAB Moves one cell to the right in a worksheet.

Moves between unlocked cells in a protected worksheet.

Moves to the next option or option group in a dialog box.

SHIFT+TAB moves to the previous cell in a worksheet or the previous option in a dialog box.

CTRL+TAB switches to the next tab in dialog box.

CTRL+SHIFT+TAB switches to the previous tab in a dialog box.

Useful - Windows ShOrtcuts

Windows system key combinations

• F1: Help

• CTRL+ESC: Open Start menu

• ALT+TAB: Switch between open programs

• ALT+F4: Quit program

• SHIFT+DELETE: Delete item permanently

Windows program key combinations

• CTRL+C: Copy

• CTRL+X: Cut

• CTRL+V: Paste

• CTRL+Z: Undo

• CTRL+B: Bold

• CTRL+U: Underline

• CTRL+I: Italic

Mouse click/keyboard modifier combinations for shell objects

• SHIFT+right click: Displays a shortcut menu containing alternative commands

• SHIFT+double click: Runs the alternate default command (the second item on the menu)

• ALT+double click: Displays properties

• SHIFT+DELETE: Deletes an item immediately without placing it in the Recycle Bin

General keyboard-only commands

• F1: Starts Windows Help

• F10: Activates menu bar options

• SHIFT+F10 Opens a shortcut menu for the selected item (this is the same as right-clicking an object

• CTRL+ESC: Opens the Start menu (use the ARROW keys to select an item)

• CTRL+ESC or ESC: Selects the Start button (press TAB to select the taskbar, or press SHIFT+F10 for a context menu)

• ALT+DOWN ARROW: Opens a drop-down list box

• ALT+TAB: Switch to another running program (hold down the ALT key and then press the TAB key to view the task-switching window)

• SHIFT: Press and hold down the SHIFT key while you insert a CD-ROM to bypass the automatic-run feature

• ALT+SPACE: Displays the main window's System menu (from the System menu, you can restore, move, resize, minimize, maximize, or close the window)

• ALT+- (ALT+hyphen): Displays the Multiple Document Interface (MDI) child window's System menu (from the MDI child window's System menu, you can restore, move, resize, minimize, maximize, or close the child window)

• CTRL+TAB: Switch to the next child window of a Multiple Document Interface (MDI) program

• ALT+underlined letter in menu: Opens the menu

• ALT+F4: Closes the current window

• CTRL+F4: Closes the current Multiple Document Interface (MDI) window

• ALT+F6: Switch between multiple windows in the same program (for example, when the Notepad Find dialog box is displayed, ALT+F6 switches between the Find dialog box and the main Notepad window)

Shell objects and general folder/Windows Explorer shortcuts

For a selected object:

• F2: Rename object

• F3: Find all files

• CTRL+X: Cut

• CTRL+C: Copy

• CTRL+V: Paste

• SHIFT+DELETE: Delete selection immediately, without moving the item to the Recycle Bin

• ALT+ENTER: Open the properties for the selected object

To copy a file

Press and hold down the CTRL key while you drag the file to another folder.

To create a shortcut

Press and hold down CTRL+SHIFT while you drag a file to the desktop or a folder.

General folder/shortcut control

• F4: Selects the Go To A Different Folder box and moves down the entries in the box (if the toolbar is active in Windows Explorer)

• F5: Refreshes the current window.

• F6: Moves among panes in Windows Explorer

• CTRL+G: Opens the Go To Folder tool (in Windows 95 Windows Explorer only)

• CTRL+Z: Undo the last command

• CTRL+A: Select all the items in the current window

• BACKSPACE: Switch to the parent folder

• SHIFT+click+Close button: For folders, close the current folder plus all parent folders

Windows Explorer tree control

• Numeric Keypad *: Expands everything under the current selection

• Numeric Keypad +: Expands the current selection

• Numeric Keypad -: Collapses the current selection.

• RIGHT ARROW: Expands the current selection if it is not expanded, otherwise goes to the first child

• LEFT ARROW: Collapses the current selection if it is expanded, otherwise goes to the parent

Properties control

• CTRL+TAB/CTRL+SHIFT+TAB: Move through the property tabs

Accessibility shortcuts

• Press SHIFT five times: Toggles StickyKeys on and off

• Press down and hold the right SHIFT key for eight seconds: Toggles FilterKeys on and off

• Press down and hold the NUM LOCK key for five seconds: Toggles ToggleKeys on and off

• Left ALT+left SHIFT+NUM LOCK: Toggles MouseKeys on and off

• Left ALT+left SHIFT+PRINT SCREEN: Toggles high contrast on and off

Microsoft Natural Keyboard keys

• Windows Logo: Start menu

• Windows Logo+R: Run dialog box

• Windows Logo+M: Minimize all

• SHIFT+Windows Logo+M: Undo minimize all

• Windows Logo+F1: Help

• Windows Logo+E: Windows Explorer

• Windows Logo+F: Find files or folders

• Windows Logo+D: Minimizes all open windows and displays the desktop

• CTRL+Windows Logo+F: Find computer

• CTRL+Windows Logo+TAB: Moves focus from Start, to the Quick Launch toolbar, to the system tray (use RIGHT ARROW or LEFT ARROW to move focus to items on the Quick Launch toolbar and the system tray)

• Windows Logo+TAB: Cycle through taskbar buttons

• Windows Logo+Break: System Properties dialog box

• Application key: Displays a shortcut menu for the selected item

Microsoft Natural Keyboard with IntelliType software installed

• Windows Logo+L: Log off Windows

• Windows Logo+P: Starts Print Manager

• Windows Logo+C: Opens Control Panel

• Windows Logo+V: Starts Clipboard

• Windows Logo+K: Opens Keyboard Properties dialog box

• Windows Logo+I: Opens Mouse Properties dialog box

• Windows Logo+A: Starts Accessibility Options (if installed)

• Windows Logo+SPACEBAR: Displays the list of Microsoft IntelliType shortcut keys

• Windows Logo+S: Toggles CAPS LOCK on and off

Dialog box keyboard commands

• TAB: Move to the next control in the dialog box

• SHIFT+TAB: Move to the previous control in the dialog box

• SPACEBAR: If the current control is a button, this clicks the button. If the current control is a check box, this toggles the check box. If the current control is an option, this selects the option.

• ENTER: Equivalent to clicking the selected button (the button with the outline)

• ESC: Equivalent to clicking the Cancel button

• ALT+underlined letter in dialog box item: Move to the corresponding item