Dittory : The Divine Intervention

Kalici palace was crawling with the waiting throng of souls and Lord Yama was not pleased. The attendants had their hands full in managing all the soulfulness that humanity was sending in these days.What with ISIS and other fanatics, things were pretty chockablock at the palace. Chitragupta’s massive register “Agrasandhani”,  which was used to maintain the deeds of the souls, had come apart at its seams, and in the confusion, the data had got mixed up. Some of the souls meant for hell, had got sent to heaven. In fact, Indra, was threatening to file a law suit as the hooligan-souls were raising all hell in heaven. So Chitragupta had just decided to migrate to the all new e-Agrasandhani.
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Yama was still used to the old way of doing things like travelling on his buffalo to pick the souls up, much to the chagrin of Agni and his other Yamaduttas. The last soul he had picked up had been an entrepreneur who had pivoted so hard, that he had lost his balance. He advised Yama to adopt automation to achieve mundane stuff and save on time. Drone uplifting of Departed Souls (DUDS) was his brainwave to solve this.He seemed quite elated that there were so many angels in heaven to cater to his funding requirements. All that was fine, but what of all the selfie deaths which were occurring, Yama retorted. Yet, another chap had wanted to get his selfie clicked with Yama to put on his Facebook Live stream, as he was still tumbling off the cliff. All of a sudden, people were also starting to die of a strange new disease called SFS (Scrolling Fatigue Syndrome).

Yama decided to pay Indra a visit, to sort out the soul mixup issue. As he entered the Land of the Devas, pretty much every one was furiously peering into their new D-phones. Technology was omnipresent. In fact, there were talks about having Google elevated to the God position. People seemed to be asking Google more questions than they had ever asked the Gods or sages. Apparently, some of the Devas were also developing the BaaS (Boon as a Service).

As he was ushered into Indra’s presence, he observed that Indra seemed a little agitated and not his usual self. Just then, a hooligan soul appeared and whistled as an Apsara walked past. Indra immediately reduced the soul to a stone and again lapsed into a sullen silence. Finally when Yama inquired the reason, Indra divulged the details. When a human devotee had wished for a garment that looked similar to the one Devi Indrani wore, he had been unable to grant the wish. Asking Devi Indrani for the celestial garment was out of question, so he had set the task for all his Gandharvas and Apsaras to visit all the stores in the three worlds and peer through all the online celestial websites searching for the similar garments. Of course, they had had no luck till now, and his reputation was at stake.

Yama was on his way out, when he got a soul alert on his soul-pickup app.One soul was on the verge of departing,located some where in Yeshwantpur, Bangalore.His buffalo,though had other plans and wanted to take a detour at Delhi. The Bhains log at earth had launched a campaign in Change.org asking for equal rights as the gows. As a celestial buffalo, he considered it his duty to put his weight behind them. So it came to pass that Yama landed in Yeshwantpur, on a busy Friday afternoon. Battling the huge traffic, he just made it in the nick of time.

The soul was just about ready as the ECG line was already flat. Chitragupta had proactively emailed him the soul’s deeds. Hmm..it was that of one Mr Satya, a Project Manager in IT Services. Perusing his long lists of negatives, Yama saw that he had stolen the limelight from his team, couldn’t say “No” to the client, two people in his team had died because of documentation fatigue and one by pointless meetings overdose. Tsk Tsk, this was going to be a toss up between a rebirth or hell. When it was time, Yama approached the soul and asked him to accompany but Satya’s soul didn’t want to budge. “No No.. don’t you realize, I cant go.I haven’t met my deadlines. I still haven’t completed the appraisals and I waited the whole year to screw them !” he wailed. Ahh, God save his team. Yama declined.”Sorry old chap. You just met your ECG deadline. Time to go buddy.”

They had to travel to the other end of the city to meet his buffalo before the office rush hour started. As they boarded a BMTC bus, suddenly Yama noticed a woman following them. It turned out to be Satya’s wife, Savi. Yama asked Savi to go back, but she refused to listen. Finally Yama turned and told her that she could ask for a wish but she had to positively scram after that. Savi,who had been waiting for this exact moment, told Yama that she wanted a garment which was very similar to Devi Indrani’s clothes. Suddenly everything became clear to Yama. So this was the human devotee and he was filled with admiration for this clever woman. She had already checked if the task was divinely possible by testing Indra and now that she knew it was not, she was using it to save her husband. However, Yama still decided to give it a shot.

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They consented to go to Satya and Savi’s house where Yama and his deputees could search for the garments. Yama summoned his Yamaduttas and they spent the whole of that day and night scrolling through innumerable e-commerce websites. Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra,Snapdeal and 100’s of others. Was it this pink ? – Yama asked Savi. Ah no, that was piggy pink, while she liked a lavendar pink. A week had passed but still there was no signs of ending the relentless search. Chitragupta was in fits at the Kalici Palace.Yama knew that he would forever be parked at Satya’s home, if something wasn’t done fast. He summoned Narada, who informed him that there was a wise man from the south who might have an answer to his problems, but he could only be contacted on twitter. So Yama sent a message to #SagelyBeard and he immediately got a reply. A single word – “Dittory“.

1-DittoryResultsSo Yama installed the Dittory chrome extension and a small colorful butterfly blinked on the top. He showed Savi a list of products and asked her to pick any one that she liked. When Savi selected one, the butterfly magically displayed many results which were similar. Soon, they found one which Savi really wanted. Yama sensed that Savi loved the products but was hesitating to select one out of fear, that Yama would take Satya’s soul away. Finally Yama said “Savi, thanks for bringing up a problem which so many people are contending with and battling – the deadly Scrolling Fatigue Syndrome (SFS).It enabled me to look for this awesome solution and so in return, I will let Satya’s soul stay on earth.Thathasthu. As for Satya, he can remove his legs from the grave and pull up his socks.”

Yama sped away to Devlok on his waiting Buffalo and gleefully informed Indra about Dittory. Indra was transfixed and in gratitude, he forgot all about the impending soul lawsuit that he had threatened to file. Peace returned to Devlok and the Devas went back to fighting the usual wars with Asuras. As for Yama, he decided to sponsor the DUDS program himself. And a colorful butterfly remained on this earth flitting from one browser to other and saving people a lot of time and money.

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Dittory – A small helpful butterfly in your browser. Get it here.

Dittory

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Disclaimer: I have a vested interest in the product as I happen to work with SagelyBeard 🙂

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Apps, Wine and Food – Nokia Apptasting in Bangalore

Nokia Apptasting
The latest differentiating factor in the smartphone world is Apps or as Rajiv Makhni put it, quote unquote the last customization possible today in technology. As a consumer in today’s rapidly changing market, where every app becomes yesterday’s news even before its launched,I was eager to know more. So my attendance was a foregone conclusion when I found an invitation from Indiblogger featuring Nokia Apptasting which promised fine apps and fine wine.The fact that the show was to be hosted by Rajiv Makhni, a popular tech show host and Vikas Khanna,the celebrity chef from NY, increased the glamor factor even more.

As I drove towards the venue, ITC Gardenia, I had my navigation-app voice guide me. For someone who has been directionally challenged for ages, having this app gave me enormous independence.As I entered the plush lobby of ITC Gardenia, I saw several bloggers waiting with anticipation.Some were clearly techies and some were hard core foodies and I wondered at this interesting potpourri of tech and food.I shared a table with some very interesting bloggers – 2 food bloggers, 1 Travel blogger and couple of bloggers with personal blogs and memoirs.

Nokia was represented by their Country head – corporate communications, Poonam Kaul and she made an interesting statement in her opening address – How many of us actually thought apps were still technology ? The import of this became became increasingly clear as the show proceeded.

Soon Rajiv and Vikas made the grand entry amidst roaring applause and they held the audience spell bound – Rajiv through his wit and quick repartee and Vikas through his simplicity and understated elegance.We started with Blogger introductions which was tailored like an elevator pitch on why they blog and amidst a lot of them, I managed to remember a few – An elderly gentleman who spoke about building the ‘character bank’ of India, a young man in striped shirt who got 4 girl friends through his blog, married the 5th and had a child with the 6th :), a 10-year old blogger who blogged to express his personal feelings. Wow, it sure was liberating to see how technology has empowered lives by removing all barriers. Just as I was wondering of how we would get through the 250+ bloggers who were in the room, they announced a cut off after 30 bloggers.Though it was a bit of disappointment not to meet all the bloggers, it was understandable, otherwise we would just be ‘Chaar baj gaye lekin party abhi baki hai..’

What followed next was Nokia apps showcased along with plenty of audience engagement built around it. The apps that were chosen were picked from various categories like entertainment, food, navigation and all of them effectively translated their relevance in current times.

I witnessed an app which makes a funny Charlie Chaplin style video in less than two minutes. Vikas and 2 others from the audience were the chosen bakras for a mock ramp walk which was converted almost immediately to a CC style video in black & white complete with sound effects. An app which suggests the wine based on the food served and the audience was served Sauvignon Blanc wine with fried chicken to check out the app’s suggestion !

An app which gives you an alcohol test and tells you if you are fit enough to drive provided one is not sozzled enough to operate that app ! An app which tutors you to dance in Gangnam style and we saw this in action when a group of audience performed some of Psy’s captivating moves 🙂 though must say even an app cant teach you how to get that expression !

The event would not have been complete without a quiz and so a tech-food quiz was thrown in and lots of prizes won including some Nokia Lumia. The final event ‘Your wish is my app’ was selection of the best app suggestions from the audience. The app which won the prize was the idea of accessory shopper ‘AccsApp’ which would help women spot their favorite accessories and shop for them. I personally liked one which suggested taking pictures of the potholes along with their GPS positions and uploading it on Facebook for gathering likes which could then enable sending alerts to the local MLAs/Contractors.Talk about an app changing the face of citizen involvement in governance !

We then proceeded to have a sumptuous dinner along with a brief tête-à-tête with other bloggers before heading home.

Thanks to Nokia and Indiblogger team for organizing this event !