shekispeaks

Sicilian Submarine

sicily books movies
In the last year I came across Sicily in a lot of books and movies. The first book The Leopard is the story of a declining Sicilian royal family in the 1860s. This book is based during the Italian unification. Unbeknownst to me, Italy was controlled by French Bourbons, Spanish and the Austrian holy Roman Empire until the last 1800s. Italy as we know it today is a modern state. This came as a surprise to me when I was reading the book. Read more...

Immigration and Wages

immigration usa
I live and work in the US thanks to the H1B Visa program. This is a program to get high skilled workers to the US. There is a narrative in the US right now that immigrants are taking jobs away from Americans. High skilled immigrants might be causing wage suppression for other Americans. A lot of my mostly liberal friends do not believe in this. The general belief in San Francisco is that immigration is great for the economy. Read more...

BART Gates

BART San Francisco
The BART gates are a good example of design gone wrong. The gates were designed to be operated from both directions, one could use the same gate to come in to a BART station or go out. But in reality most BART stations operate with half the gates working in a single direction. The gates flash not available either on the inside or on the outside. I assume it was confusing as people would try to come in and leave from the same gates as people don’t tend to think much when they are rushing to catch a train. Read more...

Coffee shop

A bright but colorless coffee shop opens in your neighborhood. They have croissants, bagels and Gibraltar coffee. La Luz (a Spanish American band) plays in the background. You don’t recognize La Luz. You think the shop is out of place. You wonder who are these folks at this coffee shop. Their colorless black rain jackets complement the white pale decor. They blend in. The coffee shop acts as if they are a local institution. Read more...

Vim CtrlP per directory cache

I use the awesome ctrlp in VIM. At any given point of time I work in multiple directories (git projects). This often pollutes my CtrlP MRU Cache. For example - I get results for Api directory when I am modifying code in my Web directory. This is midly irritating. To solve this you can set the ctrlp_cache_dir with a prefix of the current directory. Here is a snippet to do that. Read more...

Week in review 7 March 2016

We went to Portland ( me, Belle, Vlad and Srik). It was Vlad’s good bye trip. He is moving to New York at the end of this week. This is partly sad and partly exciting. I feel I expected a lot more from Portland the city due to pop culture references. It had good restaurants and bars - very good for a mid sized US city, but nothing made me feel like I can live here. Read more...

Week in review 29 Feb 2016

I spent the Sunday snow boarding at Heavenly resort in South Lake Tahoe. Thanks to the storm on Saturday night, there was fresh powder on all the slopes. It was a great day to snow board. In related news it has been a wet week in the bay area, with 7 inches of rain. The fields were lush green on the way up to Tahoe, a welcome relief from the usual California gold color. Read more...

Bye Bye Facebook.

This is a copy of my Goodbye message I posted internally at Facebook. Monday, (Nov 16) is my last day at Facebook.I was looking at the goodbye posts former People of Facebook for inspiration for my post. But instead, I decided to generate a message from the awesome corpus there. This computer generated artisanal message mostly captures what I want to say: So i really want to take this opportunity to say, after 4+ years of wonderful journey, the coming monday (nov-16) will be my last day at facebook. Read more...

RootConf 2015

I attended RootConf 2015 in Bangalore. A big shout out to HasGeek for putting together a good conference. I gave a talk on Rewriting Parse.com there. I got a nice Introduction to SaltStack by Mike Place. Salt Stack looks like a cleaner better Chef/Puppet. A few Engineers I trust love it. Anand Chitipothu presented a biased comparison of how Postgres is better than MySQL. He mostly compared MySQL 5.5 with MyISAM. Read more...

A conversation to remember.

travel conversation Berlin
I sometimes wonder, why I blog but it is to often to tell myself a story. Time erodes your memories and you just have big events in your brain, but sometimes it is the small things that happen to you which you enjoy. So today I republish a post of mine from 2009. I was an intern at Freie Universität in the great city of Berlin. A couple of days ago I met a Sri Lankan man at the bus stand as it is my habit nowadays to speak to all people who look Indian. Read more...