Thursday, March 4, 2010

Break Even

A: This style will break even in fifty years.

B: No! It will be like this forever.

A: But it has to break even. It cannot continue like this. We must go back at some point in time.

A: We have to find a means of staying together. We cannot afford to build one house per child. We all need to be able to settle down at the same place. If every single kid that is born today aspires to build his own home after 20 years, moon will not be far from earth! Besides, our country will not be like this forever. Someday, we will have high end infrastructure and better technology. All those Indians working abroad in various fields will look to work for Indian government. And we will have more to look for than making dollars. Agriculture will prosper. We will have enough food like in the olden days coupled with better medical facilities. 

But yes! I do see your point. We have a problem.

B: What problem?

A: If we go on building more houses and cutting down more trees from outskirts of cities and towns, if IT companies start setting up offices in small and large towns, and for this purpose, more and more agricultural land is converted for residential and non-agricultural purpose, and if the desire to own more cars and houses continues to burn, no one will ever come around to believing that we Indians can ever do anything better than working for foreigners.

B: Don’t you see the obvious? What have we in India to work for? I mean, yes, we have railways, we have ISRO, we have banks and government hospitals but the quality of life is so mediocre. You work for a software firm. Can you leave that and join local politics? Can you join Andhra Bank and stay content? Can you join a departmental store and work as an assistant?

A: You are right. I wouldn’t. But there has to be a way out. Isn’t there anything we can do other than software? Why don’t we have any breakthroughs in any field? I don’t even know what else is there to work on. Where do we get such awareness from? What do students from disciplines other than CS aspire to become? I know a kid who wanted to do his post graduation in aeronautical engineering.  I don’t know what he is up to now.

B: The question is why so many people go to Software when they have a degree in civil or chemical or in physics! They start off aspiring to become a painter, an astronaut or a tennis player and end up in software. Is the trend related to the monetary benefit it brings or is it related to the risk taking ability of Indians at large? A large number of Indians are and have been comfortable with those areas which can generate a steady income. Is this trend slowly changing with more and more people taking up the risk of entrepreneurship.

However is this enough? Where is good governance and enforcement of laws and anti-corruption measures, leadership?

Where is the infrastructure of the nation?Why is the population of other countries lower than that of India?