Apple and Brahmin’s Coffee Bar

I follow Apple, a consumer product company regularly. I have also invested lot of my time in understanding the company history, product design ideology, product iterations, how it positions itself in the market, how it differentiates itself from others by tight integration of software and hardware etc. Since I follow it so closely, I tend to see many other things in those lines and try to draw parallels whenever possible. Of course I give it a good thought but I do not think it through all the intricate details as it more of a fun thought experiment. One such parallel I could think of was Brahmin’s Coffee Bar in Basavangudi, Bangalore, India. I visit Brahmin’s Coffee Bar very often and treat myself to the best idli and vades I have ever eaten. Apart from that, this blog post idea was lingering in my mind for eons now, so I wanted to put an end to that procrastination cycle.

Brahmin’s Coffee Bar (referred as BCB from now on) is a small restaurant that serves few South Indian dishes and coffee/tea and it is well known. Have a look at the menu card of BCB in the picture below.


As you can see very few dishes are served. Similar to Apple, which does not release whole range of models of phones, instead sells and supports only a small range of products. This helps keep the supply chain lean and react fast to market changes apart from other advantages which I am not fully aware of.

In the second picture you can see the picture of  idli and vade in a plate. One thing to notice is that the plate is very simple and lacks unnecessary design complexities which are seen in other similar restaurants. This makes the daily cleaning of dishes and replacement easy. This is similar to Apple, where it provides simple user interface (imho) and does not provide features which are used by only a small percentage of people and useful only in few incidences.

If you know how idli and vade is served in general, apart from noticing there are no partition in plates for chutney and sambar, you can notice there is no sambar. I am guessing it is an intentional omission and probably they have their reasons for it (will try to check and update the reason if I come across). Similarly with Apple, they tend to omit some very important feature that is common with other similar products from competitors due to various reasons such as controlling the hardware, competition etc. For example they removed 3.5mm headphone jack to control their music ecosystem.

If you have ever visited BCB, you can notice that inspite of having lot of customers, the service is quite fast. This enhances customer experience as it helps deliver menu items fast. They do this by limiting the menu and have lots of people to serve the menu items they cook. In Apple too, they tend to do the similar thing. They kind of have lot of support personnel which enhances customer experience.

To summarise, I have jotted down some points which made me think BCB as parallel to Apple. It is more of a fun thought experiment but feel free to provide points in which the analogy breaks or give more inputs to validate my weak claim 🙂



Objects in Space

As 2016 dawns upon me, I await for it with a child-like inquisitiveness and immense hope that it will be another interesting ride in my life. 2015 was special to me, because I have a feeling that I am back to my ‘best me’, the ‘me’ who is curious, confident and ready to take up the new challenge thrown at me. This year I make progress with my german, started learning mandarin. Read books which for me were the best of all I have read till now (though i did not reach my target). Did not run enough. Was mindful and practiced minimalism to the maximum. I have been more disciplined than I could have imagined to be, I am happy about it. I made some good friends though I could not keep in touch with my old ones. So this year has been a mix of ups and downs , like I want it to be. I made some progress with my interest in astronomy and astrophotography. With that note, I look forward to 2016! I leave you all with some pictures of ‘objects in space‘ that I took this month 🙂

All pictures are taken from a xperia Z smartphone and celestron Firstscope telescope.



Planets – Jupiter and 4 of its moons and Mars. Mars does not look great with my telescope.

Pleiades open cluster (also called M45) in Taurus constellation.

Happy new year 2016!!

The Spark

Series of not so exciting days, is something he could not handle. He was waiting for the spark around, the one that doesn’t allow one to sleep. Such a day did come, but, not before a long wait. A wait where the person he hated the most was no longer around him, it was him. Wait, where the last bit of infinitesimal amount of confidence was sucked out of him. He lived on a very small dosage of hope, which he carefully weighed and consumed. He knew for sure, he has to wait for a long time, to end his wait. In fact he wished if time could run backwards, for he was sure that he would be nearer to exciting times then. Sadly, like his mind, the time too was not in his control. A slave he had become, of laziness. With illusion, that of pursuit of excellence, he marched, day in and day out. Only to achieve mediocrity, and worst, make it the quality of his soul. He was fooling himself.

Times were difficult. He was in a state of mind, where he convinced himself that success should not be the goal of one’s life. He knew what he was trying to elude, he knew sooner or later it will find it. He knew, when failure find him, there is no eluding and he will be caught unguarded. He knew all along, that he had failed, it was with him all the time. He was running away from himself. Surprisingly, even with so much noise in his head, he slept very well. He was escaping life, realities and pain of dealing with them by just waiting. He could sleep in broad day light. But one fine night, he could not sleep.It was strange, he also turned off the small lamp thinking it would help him. He could not.

May be the wait ended, coz he found the spark,not around but within.

Ticks of Lord Time

I am a big Game of Thrones (GoT) fan, I think it is the most brilliant TV shows ever made. I like the GoT theme song which is awesome, but I like Rains of Castemere more than the theme song. I think Rains of Castemere is very powerful. I liked it so much, I kinda changed few words and wrote a new song about my upcoming exams, where I basically fight time to do well in my exams. So here is the song I wrote and here is the cover of original song and its lyrics.

And who are you, the proud lord said,
that I must work so hard?
Only a student of a masters course,
that’s all the truth I know.
I’m either clueless or I’m in fear,
but I still have the ability,
And I work so hard and study till its late,
just like you always do.
And so he ticked, and so he ticked,
that lord of time,
But now the ticks in my watch,
with no one there to fear.
Yes now the ticks weep in my watch,
coz the exams are already over
Hope I live up to what I have written and give a good exams 😀
– Check some covers of Rains of Castemere on soundcloud or listen here below
Image source – here


Next time, when you bookmark/favorite/mailyourslef a link to read later, think about it for a second or two. Think whether you really would want to read it or do you think you’ll make good use of the link. Give it an effective quick thought, overtime it seems more like an intuitive response. If the answer is no, you may not read it later, do yourself a favour by not bookmarking that link.

It can be easily argued that its a trivial thing and doesn’t hurt much. I would like to counter by saying – overtime, accumulation of unread/unused links creates a kind of guilt of “not doing” things you “love/like”. This is not a social effect but a result of introspection. Also I strongly believe that this is an extrapolation of the core human behaviour, to keep things which are not required with an explanation of later use. In short its greed. No its not wrong to save things for future, but when you do give it a good thought and act.

Why is it that it is greed when it comes to money and not when it comes to reading/knowledge ?

May be

It rained that day. They caught enormous amount of fish. They came back to the shore with joyous face. Looked like it will be a good year. Happiness everywhere. They all got together in the bar to celebrate. May be its a human thing, people become nostalgic and philosophical about life when they are happy.

All were drunk.

We should not live in the past. We must learn to let go. We should be less attached to physical things. We must celebrate failure. Happiness is a decision and doesn’t depend on anything but us. These were the kind of things they spoke while they were in that über-philosophical mood.

I completely agree with that. We must learn to celebrate our own failure and be happy irrespective of things we possess or want to. I went one level deep and like a greatest philosopher was asking himself questions like is expecting an answer to a question also a desire? Is not wanting to desire a desire too? If yes how could one be selfless and still be without desire? At least this time I didn’t want answers to those self posed question. I knew I was a pseudo-philosopher. Suddenly the idea of wanting to be a greatest human philosophically, without any attachment, without any desire seemed absurd. I was confused. Also unhappy. I could see the irony there. But I was happy that I thought this way.

While I sat thinking more about it the sea was calm. Within it were zillions of creatures. Also all the wealth one would want to possess. It’s own sun and moon and stars and what not. It can change weather, affect every living and non living thing ever. But it was there as though not aware of all this. May be it never asked questions. May be it didn’t desire all the wealth it has within. May be it doesn’t know about a word that gives similar meaning of desire.

May be sea is the greatest philosopher. May be.


It was that day in the island where the sea was calm on eyes, waves were soothing on ears. Everyone waited for sun to set. The sunset here is the most beautiful and resplendent, they said. There is a hill nearby where the view of sunset is magical, they added. Some started walking towards it. Some started building a wall on which they could witness the sunset. Some sat there consuming the sumptuous treat nature had to offer. It was time, time waited for no one, so did the sun. It was a great sight, the people building the walls loved the view, the people walking to the hill missed it.

All were happy though, some liked to walk, some to build and some liked being ‘there’ and enjoy the moment. They liked the island for its sunset so much, they all decided to live there. Years passed. The walkers walked around the island collecting food for all. The builders didn’t stop building the wall, they built it higher and broader, day after day. Others carried on doing random chores that came up.

They forgot about the sunset.