Sunday, January 27, 2008

Counter-intuitives : The 'true' misconceptions

Common-sense occasionally dictates us to behave or react in ways that are scientifically irrational...

#1: When the stock market is on a low, economics dictates that one should 'invest' in the market. Nevertheless, our common-sense (and basic instincts) makes us react otherwise and the 'right way/answer' seems counter-intuitive to ourselves.

#2: Often seen on "Khul Ja Sim Sim" or other Game Shows on TV :

Suppose you're on a game show, and you're given the choice of three doors: Behind one door is a car; behind the others, goats. You pick a door, say No. 1, and the host, who knows what's behind the doors, opens another door, say No. 3, which has a goat. He then says to you, "Do you want to pick door No. 2?" Is it to your advantage to switch your choice?

This paradox, also known as the "Monty Hall Paradox" has its roots in mathematical theory:


Question -- What other instances of such counter-intuitives have you seen in life ?

Friday, January 18, 2008

PIFF 2008

Some memories of PIFF '08 before they fade from my mind:

  1. Bliss aka Mutluluk (Greece)

  2. "The Lark Farm" aka "La Masseria delle allodole" (Italy)

  3. _Something_ "International" aka "Beynelmilel" (Turkey)

  4. "Black Book" aka "Zwartboek" (Netherlands)

  5. Warchild (Germany)

Afternote: Turns out that 'Bliss' and 'Beynelmilel' took away top honors at the film festival.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

What is The Proust Questionnaire ?

The (Sunday) Indian Express Column called "Third Eye" by Nadine Kreisberger is a modification of the original Proust Questionnaire

Nadine Kreisberger is a French traveller who has worked in international relations, classical music, journalism and psychology. But it is her particular interest in spiritual matters that has led her to devise this version of The Proust Questionnaire: "It helps us to see people who they really are inside".

Third Eye: Archives on the IE Website

The Proust Questionnaire is a questionnaire about one's personality, first popularized by the responses given by the French writer Marcel Proust.

At the end of the nineteenth century, when Proust was still in his teens, he discovered a questionnaire in an English-language album belonging to his friend Antoinette, daughter of future President Felix Faure, entitled "An Album to Record Thoughts, Feelings, etc." At that time, it was a fad among wealthy English families to answer such a list of questions that revealed the tastes and aspirations of the taker.

The "Nadine Kreisberger" Proust Questionnaire asks:
  • What does spirituality mean to you?
  • Do you believe you are guided and protected by a superior force?
  • Do you believe you have a special mission or purpose in this life?
  • What is spirituality for you in your day-to-day life?
  • What is the role of spirituality in your life as a {business person, politician, ... _name_of_profession_} ?
  • Can you tell us about a unique experience that changed or shaped your spiritual beliefs?
  • What are your spiritual inspirations?
  • If you were to be reincarnated, what would you like to be?
  • If there was one question you could ask God, what would it be?
  • What is your idea of happiness?

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

So spake Sudraka

Thundercloud, I think you are wicked,
You know I'm going to meet my own lover,
And yet you first scare me with your thunder,
And now you're trying to caress me,
With your rain hands!