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Bhooshan

Bhooshan Pandya is a UX consultant & Product Designer with more than 12 years of experience in representing global brands within cross-cultural teams in many countries. He brings his customer-centric vision to projects and is an ardent advocate of ‘design-thinking’ for co-creating solutions that create value for both the business and users. While working with a product he follows the objective of designing an experience which is enjoyable, engaging, and enduring.

‘One Heart’ Is A Melodic Pilgrimage with AR Rahman

I have been an ardent fan of the Oscar-winning music composer AR Rahman since the ‘Roja’ days and I feel particularly sorry for admitting that I haven’t been to any of his live concerts! But all is not lost and I still have my hopes high. Meanwhile, I was privileged to watch a movie on his life and times through a concert called ‘One Heart – The AR Rahman Concert Film’. It’s a film for anyone who has missed the chance to experience a live performance.

The 90-minute documentary consists of footage from AR Rahman’s ‘The Intimate Concert Tour’ in which his cherry-picked 10-member band performed in 14 cities across the US. Though I could not ignore the fact that this movie appears to be produced as an afterthought by including additional footage, in the end, it was the music and the live performances that mattered. It revealed the maestro’s melodious journey through a rare interview of the legendary composer himself, how he engineers those tunes, his inspirations, and associations, etc., also a never-before-seen Rahman opening up on his personal life. The live band consists of AR Rahman himself, with Ranjit Barot (percussion), Annette Philip (jazz/vocals), Marie Calhoun (violin), Jonita Gandhi (from Toronto! Yaay!!) and Haricharan (vocals), Mohini De (bass guitar/prodigy), Keba Jeremiah (guitar), Devi Rani Najev (dancer), along with Shiraz Uppal, Sanket Athale, Ashwin Srinivasan, and more, most of whom you might have caught jamming on the MTV Unplugged (India) season. I imagine I may have missed a few names, but then again, the concert was very engrossing.

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This November 7th Twitter announced it’s doubling the character limit from 140 to 280. It wasn’t that long when 140 characters seemed like a barrier as I typed my first notes in 2007. And as time flew, I accepted the challenge of emitting my views with limited use of words albeit using more tweets. In the process, I also became deft at using English terms. It was fun but that wasn’t the only thing I liked about the restraint of Twitter’s ABCs. Comprehending the emotions of my counterparts was also painless, whether a friend’s happy event, an unfortunate tragedy, or an outrage on some political news. I cannot ignore the diverse forms of outraging on Twitter with humour or insulting language and mindless obscenity. At times for good reasons, sometimes frivolous but mostly done for a harmless banter presumably. Regardless of the personal motives let’s applaud Twitter for doubling the characters. It’s a welcome change even if it increases the length of our tweets at least our views & interests would be communicated instantaneously and not in multiple pieces. Here’s to more tweeting with 280 then!

Goodbye, Dear Mint!

Last week, with a heavy heart, I removed the Mint Bird Feeder plugin from my site which effectively disconnected my site from providing ‘Mint’ the analytics for one final time. I was left with no choice and here’s why I did what I did.

I remember clearly, I was mesmerized by Mint when it was launched in the last decade. I’m talking about a pre-social media era where blogging was the absolute norm in reaching out to the world. But what seemed important to me was the analytics part. This was the time when Google had not yet launched their Analytics product which gave me raw numbers on page views, geographical visits, etc. I had other analytics software at my disposal which helped me feel the pulse of my audience and to gauge the popularity of my writing. So when Mint was developed and launched by Shaun Inman I bought the product without thinking over it twice.

Last week things started going downhill. I wasn’t able to log into my website Dashboard and I began to worry, that’s when I got in touch with Bluehost and asked them to take a look. It was found that the ‘Mint Bird Feeder’ plug-in was the root cause of the issue and they deactivated it pronto. I was aware that the product development of Mint has ceased with Shaun moving on to other ventures and I did not want to compromise the security of my site and so I removed it completely. Furthermore, the developer of the said plugin hadn’t updated it in over 2 years.

Quite frankly, I had a wonderful time with Mint and some third-party plugins (branded as ‘Peppermint’) as long as they lasted. Given the obvious vagaries of the programming world, I took up the challenge of installing Mint and succeeded, until Google Analytics came along and disrupted the fragmented web analytics product industry forever, in the process, creating an entirely new segment of ‘digital marketing’ and ‘SEO’! But I’ll always be thankful to Shaun for giving me an amazing product experience with Mint and Peppermill. Goodbye, and good luck!

Returning To Rotman In A Mentoring Role

Yesterday I was invited at the Rotman School of Management’s Business Edge program for mentoring the current cohort during the Informational Interview BootCamp. It was my pleasure to enlighten the cohort since I’ve heavily invested in using this tool for networking within my industry and I have managed to make some awesome connections. Through the Business Edge program I also get to work with a diverse batch of internationally educated alumnae who bring their varied industry experience from all parts of the world! It’s always a pleasure to be invited back to the program as a graduate and today was one such special day. The format of the BootCamp matches individual professionals with a program graduate based on their future career interest & line of work.

The BootCamp, which is held once for every cohort at the Rotman campus, brings together a varied blend of experienced graduates from Business Edge’s fine legacy and lends a no-risk-no-obligation opportunity to practice the principles of informational interviews. This was also a great setting for me to meet my fellow graduates from past cohorts – or as I call it, networking within a diverse network. This is also that occasion when I get to mingle, meet, and to share my aspirations and career learnings one-on-one with the illustrious Rotman faculty, especially Sabina and Val. To put it all in a nutshell, yesterday was a memorable day for me!

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The goal of a designer is to listen, observe, understand, sympathize, empathize, synthesize, and glean insights that enable him or her to ‘make the invisible visible’.

Hillman Curtis

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Bhooshan Pandya