Kanthan's blog

Who guards The Guardian?

24 February 2020 — Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? This Latin phrase traces back to the work of the Roman poet Juvenal, written around the late first or early second century, It translates to "who will guard the guardians?" Surprisingly, the original context was not in the sense of the modern...

Corona versus Ebola: some stats

23 February 2020 — The Democratic Republic of Congo announced their tenth outbreak of Ebola in 40 years on 1 August 2018. The number of cases has exceeded 3 000, making it the country's largest-ever Ebola outbreak. It is the second-largest Ebola outbreak after one which hit West Africa from...

Every so often, the Internet gives us something truly wonderful

22 February 2020 — Fancy listening to Folk Music of Afghanistan from 1971? Or Afro-Cuban Jazz from 1966? The Internet Archive has begun digitizing long out-of-print vinyl and making it freely available. As I write these words, I am listening to "Profiles" by Gary McFarland (1966). It was...

Free speech versus the right to bear arms?

21 February 2020 — The First Amendment to the United States Constitution prevents government passing laws prohibiting freedom of speech. The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution protects the individual right to keep and bear arms. But what if they are in fact the same thing?...

Cognitive bias holding you back?

20 February 2020 — A quick listicle from the World Economic Forum on cognitive biases that could be holding some of us back at work. The sunk cost fallacy — when you have already invested so much time, emotion, or effort in something that it becomes difficult to abandon, even though you...

Reading into India's GDP growth

19 February 2020 — Quite a bit of buzz today around the fact that India has overtaken the UK as the world's fifth largest economy. India's GDP has clocked $2,94 trillion. The UK sits at $2,83 trillion followed by France at $2,71 trillion. There's been a lot of grumbling from India's...

A plague on both your houses!

18 February 2020 — "And I miss you... Like the deserts miss the rain..." went the 90s track from Everything But The Girl. Desert rains also bring chaos. An abundance of rain leads to an abundance of foliage, which encourages breeding of locusts. These have wreaked havoc around the Horn of...

Looking for the elevator in the gym?

17 February 2020 — Ever stop to observe the behaviour of vehicles entering a shopping center parking lot? They will generally circle close to the entrance of the shop they want to go to. Frequently, they will stop in a row, hazards flashing, waiting for someone to leave their space....

Up in my air balloon, air balloon...

16 February 2020 — Whenever I watch "Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade", I'm filled with longing for the majestic beauty of airships. Three times longer and twice as tall as a 747 – to put that in perspective, the Hindenburg class machine was as long as the Empire State Building is tall – ...

Biting the bullet butter

15 February 2020 — "Have you got any butter?" I asked the barista at the Slow XS Lounge in Lanseria. He had just passed me a double espresso. "Sure," he said, and passed me a couple of single serve tubs. He then watched in fascination as I tipped both into the espresso. "I bet you've never...

So Ramaphosa delivered, sort of...

14 February 2020 — Yesterday, I said there are three very simple things President Ramaphosa can do today that will immediately give an uptick to our economy: Let SAA fail Take the money that would be spent on SAA and use it to upgrade Metrorail rolling stock and stations Hand over...

My wishes for the State of the Nation Address tonight

13 February 2020 — There are three very simple things President Ramaphosa can do today that will immediately give an uptick to our economy: Let SAA fail Take the money that would be spent on SAA and use it to upgrade Metrorail rolling stock and stations Hand over control of Metrorail to...