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Emails, outerspace and Indian cricket November 29, 2006

Posted by Sharath Rao in ideas, science, sport.
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1. How do you sign off an email and what determines how you do ( if at all ). I have thought of this before, the context of letters as well as email and its always nice to know the NYTimes has been as well.

Chad Troutwine, an entrepreneur in Malibu, Calif., was negotiating a commercial lease earlier this year for a building he owns in the Midwest. Though talks began well, they soon grew rocky. The telltale sign that things had truly devolved? The sign-offs on the e-mail exchanges with his prospective tenant.

“As negotiations started to break down, the sign-offs started to get decidedly shorter and cooler,” Mr. Troutwine recalled. “In the beginning it was like, ‘I look forward to speaking with you soon’ and ‘Warmest regards,’ and by the end it was just ‘Best.’ ” The deal was eventually completed, but Mr. Troutwine still felt as if he had been snubbed.

2.

Here is how your ( and everybody else’s) body is likely to react in outerspace.

For about ten full seconds– a long time to be loitering in space without protection– an average human would be rather uncomfortable, but they would still have their wits about them. Depending on the nature of the decompression, this may give a victim sufficient time to take measures to save their own life. But this period of “useful consciousness” would wane as the effects of brain asphyxiation begin to set in. In the absence of air pressure the gas exchange of the lungs works in reverse, dumping oxygen out of the blood and accelerating the oxygen-starved state known as hypoxia. After about ten seconds a victim will experience loss of vision and impaired judgement, and the cooling effect of evaporation will lower the temperature in the victim’s mouth and nose to near-freezing. Unconsciousness and convulsions would follow several seconds later, and a blue discoloration of the skin called cyanosis would become evident.

At this point the victim would be floating in a blue, bloated, unresponsive stupor, but their brain would remain undamaged and their heart would continue to beat. If pressurized oxygen is administered within about one and a half minutes, a person in such a state is likely make a complete recovery with only minor injuries, though the hypoxia-induced blindness may not pass for some time. Without intervention in those first ninety seconds, the blood pressure would fall sufficiently that the blood itself would begin to boil, and the heart would stop beating. There are no recorded instances of successful resuscitation beyond that threshold.

Though an unprotected human would not long survive in the clutches of outer space, it is remarkable that survival times can be measured in minutes rather than seconds, and that one could endure such an inhospitable environment for almost two minutes without suffering any irreversible damage. The human body is indeed a resilient machine.

Thats a link from MR.

3.

Here is an excellent article on what really is different ( read dysfunctional ) about Indian cricket. (Emphasis mine)

And there have been many before them: Simon Katich, Stuart MacGill, Adam Gilchrist, Justin Langer, Darren Lehmann, Michael Kasprowicz, Brad Hogg, Matthew Hayden, Damien Martyn – it’s a long list. Moral of the story: for Indian cricketers 25 is over the hill; for Australians it’s only the beginning. For Australia it is a triumph of the system; in India’s case it is testimony to the absence of a system. Australia look for the finished product, players who have gone through the grind, been hardened by competition, and are ready to plunge into international cricket. India search for precocity, a spark, and hope it can survive the cauldron.

That ( bold-faced ) is true of the larger scheme of things as well, it occurs to me.

Actually its probably about sub-continent cricket as a whole.

Over the last five years 22 players under the age of 25 have made international debuts for India. Fourteen of them were 21 or less, and two under 18. Only seven players over 25 have made debuts over the same period. On the all-time list of youngest Test debutants, one has to scroll down to 19th position to find an entry that is not from India, Pakistan, or Bangladesh. Nine of the 10 youngest centurions come from these countries.

So are we always preparing for a future ? Is having a young team an end in itself ?

Think about it, how about trying the same formula applying to India’s politicians and parliamentarians ? We might actually end up saving the country !

xoxo 🙂

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