All Posts in “Problems & Issues”

No, I don’t want to `Sign in with Facebook`

Every new website(startup?!) that I come across these days(which requires me to register to use the website) has a “Sign in with Facebook” apart from the site’s own login system. I hate it when these are the only two login options available. And, I refuse to use such sites.

It’s a PITA to remember password for each and every website we use and so, people with brains came up with an open standard protocol called OpenID. Google, Yahoo!  are famous among the many OpenID providers. If you disregard the technicalities, ‘Sign in with Facebook’ is similar to OpenID in terms of the end-user experience.

Apart from “it’s not a open standard” rant, my problem with ‘Sign in with Facebook’ is that it wants to share my private information with third party websites.

When all I want is to login to use your website, why do I need to share my friends list & other information, give you permission to access and post data? I don’t want to share my information with your stupid website. I am apprehensive about what you might do with this data. And, I don’t like it. I, just, want, to, login! Can you please provide more options?

I like “login with Google“. It’s simple and minimal, it’s OpenID and it does not share my private data with others. It serves the problem of remembering too many passwords for too many sites.

I love how Stackoverflow handles their login. It provide me with multiple options to login and is neat and elegant. I hope these new and upcoming startups learn from them.

embrace the greyside

Long time back I had a verbal fight with a friend. The fight started because he made a statement to which I did not agree. I told him my viewpoint, which he did not agree to. And we discussed for a few minutes until we realized that we both agreed with each other. Though both of us had ‘different’ views, the viewpoints were ‘right’ in their own contexts.

I’ve seen this happen so may times. In our day to day lives, when things irritate us or when we are high, we make strong statements; And when these statements go out to people without proper context, they are misunderstood.

Another reason for misunderstandings is that we assume things to be either Black or White. With least bit of reasoning, we embrace sides and talk about it vehemently. And there will be opinionated people listening who will be offended by such talk; and there will be arguments.

By nature, we are judgemental, we always look for Yes or No answers. Given a generic question, one cannot answer with a Yes or No; there will be Ifs and Buts. One has to take into consideration the specific issue at hand and the numerous limitations and problems. And when we arrive at our conclusions, we cannot just yell it out at the world; we need to give the context and reasons, because without them people cannot truly understand the conclusions.

~May the Force be with You.

Teaching the Basics at School

When I heard that the stampede at the Naina Devi Temple in Himachal Pradesh was caused because of a rumor, I felt the need to post a thought that has been in my mind for quite sometime now. It’s about our education system delivering what it needs to deliver.

One of the many purposes of education is to educate on how to be a responsible citizen and more importantly a responsible human being. So what does a responsible citizen mean? It’s not just voting in elections and paying taxes, it’s about being actively involved in whatever kind of work one does so that they make the place around them a better place to live in. I would say be a human first, then a citizen.

The stampede mentioned above resulted because of crowd panic triggered by a rumor. If people there knew how to react to `rumors` and behave in a crowd and not to panic, maybe the incident could have been averted.

What irks me is the fact that most of us lack knowledge (can call it common sense or anything you want to(Civic Sense is the word- Thanks W)) about some of the basic things that we need to know. We live in a society, and in a society we need to act and behave in a particular manner. In our day to day life, haven’t we found people spitting on roads & other public places, people behaving indecently, people not caring for fellow human beings, people not caring for precious resources being wasted around, etc., Its not that these people are doing these things knowingly & intentionally but because no body told them that it wasn’t right. A little bit of education will go a long way.

School is not the only place where we learn but it is one place where a uniform knowledge can be imparted to a wider audience. We usually learn a lot of things by being a part of society and interacting with people around us, but not everybody gets to learn every essential thing. There needs to be some form of a structured/formal way. We take for granted that children will learn about these things from their parents, friends, society as they grow but most of the times that isn’t the case.

What I think will be appropriate is a subject taught at school that will teach students some of these basic things. Well, there was a subject in my school called as Moral Science which told us to be Good Samaritans, but the same subject also said fear God. We need something that talks about practical things, based on reasoning and logic.

A few things that can be taught at school (that I can collect at this moment):

  • How to behave in a crowd, at public places.
  • To understand and respect differently-abled people.
  • How to act in case of emergencies.
  • To care about fellow human beings.
  • To care for our natural resources.
  • To respect Life.

[There are lot more that I cannot think of as of now…]

What I wish is that we all grow a little more mature and responsible as human beings and citizens of earth.