As we head towards a Brexit, Grexit and a pan-European-exit into a melt-down, I am afraid a Change of Persons will not be enough to effect the REAL CHANGE that we all need in terms of productivity, labor, transparency, equanimity and socioeconomic stability in Greece and in Europe as a whole.
It would be advisable, at this historical point, not to focus on alternative local political agendas and economic propositions, when it seems very propable to fall back into internal political dysfunctions that can run out of all proportions on the face of failure on Diplomacy and Foreign Affairs.
Σταθακόπουλος Δημήτριος, «1821, Τα ημαρτημένα»
Greece may not find its old glory days anytime soon, but it will rise again from the swamp of the recent six-year long depression, offering great opportunities for long-term investors.
Democracy and human development will pave the way for the rise.
Since ancient times, democracy has often created chaos in the street of Athens, but it has served as a diffusion mechanism for political tensions. And it has accommodated the peaceful transition from one political leadership to another– a process that has accelerated in periods of economic crises.
It’s all Rigth, Ma [I’am Only Bleeding] (by Bob Dylan)
Η στρεβλή αντίληψη, που οδηγεί στη σημερινή διεθνή εκτροπή και στο αντίθετο από το δήθεν επιδιωκόμενο αποτέλεσμα!
ΘΕΡΜΟΠΥΛΕΣ – ΩΡΑ ΜΗΔΕΝ
Όταν όλα φαίνεται να’χουν τελειώσει
και κανείς δεν πιστεύει ότι έχει
να ελπίζει σε κάτι , οτιδήποτε!
Κι όταν όλοι έχουν δεχθεί πια την ήττα τους,
περιμένοντας κάποιον άλλον να πράττει,
γιατί απλά «Αυτός» φταίει για όλα
ενώ εγώ δεν φταίω απολύτως για τίποτα…
Τότε, κάποια Υπερκόσμια Δύναμη,
κάνει μια απαράβατη δήλωση,
Μέσα από στόμα, μία φωνή ξεχασμένη,
Μα το μήνυμα είναι ξεκάθαρο,
Είναι σπίθα ανεξέλεγκτη,
Σέ’να δάσος ξερό, σχεδόν έρημο
που καιρό αυτή τη σπίθα προσμένει,
Do not go gentle into that good night (by Dylan Thomas)
[…I am the Master of my Fate, I am the Captain of my Soul…]
“Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rage at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.
And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.”
Πρίν από λίγες ημέρες έγινε γνωστό πως οι υπηρεσίες της εταιρίας Netflix θα είναι πλέον διαθέσιμες και στην Ελλάδα. Για όσους δεν γνωρίζουν την εταιρία και δεν έχουν παρακολούθησει το σχετικό χαμό στο διαδίκτυο, το Netflix είναι από τις δημοφιλέστερες και πιο ταχέως αναπτυσσόμενες συνδρομητικές υπηρεσίες streaming σειρών και ταινιών στον κόσμο, με πάνω από 70 εκατομμύρια συνδρομητές, η οποία έχει παρουσιάσει κατά καιρούς και δικές της παραγωγές (θα έχετε ίσως ακουστά το «House of Cards» με πρωταγωνιστή τον Kevin Spacey).
Η επιτυχία της εταιρίας είναι αδιαμφισβήτητη και από πολλούς θεωρείται ότι αλλάζει τον τρόπο που βλέπουμε τηλεόραση, δίνοντας στον χρήστη τη δυνατότητα να καταναλώνει τηλεοπτικό περιεχόμενο μέσω διαδικτύου, από οπουδήποτε και από οποιαδήποτε συσκευή θέλει (τηλεόραση, pc, tablet, κινητό). Η εταιρία έφερε επανάσταση στην βιομηχανία της τηλεοπτικής διασκέδασης.
Αυτό όμως που δε γνωρίζουν οι περισσότεροι, είναι πώς η επιτυχία της εταιρίας οφείλεται στην πρωτότυπη εταιρική της κουλτούρα, η οποία έρχεται να αμφισβητήσει με τη σειρά της τα στερεότυπα δεκαετιών που επικρατούσαν κι εφαρμόζονταν από όλες τις μεγάλες εταιρίες, στο HR Management .
The target of successful, strategically-agile IT tech companies is to transform internal and external risks associated with Compliance, IT Security and Cyber-Risk into Legal adherence to agreed SLAs while maintaining desired level of quality controls. This is mainly achieved by securing and exercising the Right-To-Audit across the service delivery chain in order to maintain the sufficient levels of Quality and Assurance.
Instead of viewing Security and Risk Management as necessary “costs” to be kept at a bare minimum, these companies invest in those two areas as part of their carefully chosen business portfolios. These investments are expected to induce considerable revenue streams, in the long-run, constituting a lucrative “money-making business”.
It was just a few years ago that movies like Minority Report, I Robot, Avatar and the like were picturing the forthcoming immersion of humanity into Artificial Intelligence or the other way round! The audience was at best limited to the computer gigs of the time (now holding senior positions in the Technology Conglomerates that make the earth go round) trying to imagine what life would be like 10, 20 or even more years ahead in time.
History has it that that Moore’s Law of doubling Chip technology capacity every year also applies at Software – or shall we call it “applications”. I would rather use the later term, because applications better describe the coupling of hardware and software into delivering an integrated system that performs a specific / intended function (I will re-address this statement later on).
In a small country like Greece, being poor and proud, was once a merit for all the members of this tribe. This was not too long ago, when getting enough food on the table for all the family, was a permanent daily target not easily met. Men were working at the fields or the few industrial compounds countless hours day by day, and women were looking after the family –often consisting of 10 to 15 mouths to feed and support (excluding those that didn’t survive birth or were lost before their first birthdays…)
While all this did not seem easy to bear, by neighboring European country standards, those Greeks managed to defend the city long enough to enable Second World War intruders to face their final defeat at the East, while as a percentage of the overall population, Greece incurred the biggest losses amongst all other nations engaging at this deadliest of wars. Greece was also denied of its food supplies under German reign, leading to nation-wide famine and death, not to mention the heavy Loan that it was forced to surrender to its Rulers – and has still to be repaid due to “legal malady”. And after this absurdity was over, a nasty Civil War was instigated over “Political matters of a Philosophical nature” to make the nation’s post-war recovery process almost impossible despite of the Ally Support that followed mainly under the flag of the “Marshall Plan”.
Tonight, I had a very interesting chat with one of the most forward thinkers on IT strategy but also a good friend. This was an off-paper business chat, like the ones that good friends have over wine or coffee instead of the stifle presentations and discussions that take place in a meeting room or conference setup.
We quickly transgressed into the topic of Information Security, top of the agenda list of all IT senior guys around the world. We tried to foresee where the next big waves of change will take place or what kind of future will Big-data companies like Google, Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, and the like, are designing for all of us, internet users of all races, ethnicities and ages alike.
We clearly saw that Information Security is currently a competitive advantage tool for any company that safeguards its data more effectively and outruns its competitors in the number of least successful data breaches and/or vulnerabilities in its information systems
The results of the Milgram Experiment carried out at Yale University on May 1962, clearly raised the possibility that human nature can not be trusted to insulate men from brutality and inhumane treatment at the discretion of malevolent authority.
On the issue of globalization, there has been so much debate and so differing points of view, that we still may argue on the philosophical side of things, whereas the real effects of the related experience across the globe are severely felt and here to stay. The widening of the societal bi-polars of those who have and those who don’t, exhibit in everyday life how poverty can co-exist in the same geography with the affluent thin minority, driving people to extremities of all kinds and ultimately rendering peace unsustainable.
“It would be very difficult to explain why the Universe should have begun in just this way, except as the act of a God who intended to create beings like us…
The whole history of the universe can be said to be the work of God. However if we do discover a complete theory it should, in time, be understandable by everyone not just a few scientists.
If we find the answer to that, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason. For then we would know the mind of God”
Human bodies work in two basic and alternative modes:
- The Growth Mode
- The Protection/Preservation Mode
In the Growth Mode, we receive both nutrition from our intestines as blood concentrates there to aid digestion and absorption of nutrients from our food. This mode required that the person is relatively at ease, thus the brain concentrates in the digestion process allowing the blood flow to be allocated accordingly.
Homeless People is not Someone else’s “Problem”.
Unemployment figures mean nothing to tele-viewers or people on the streets if not related to actionable initiatives.
All we’re below one sky,
There is a story about a family man returning from the day’s work, feeling exhausted, lost in his anxieties and worries for the future of his family, questioning his ability to feed them and provide a secure home to keep them sheltered and safe altogether. Going deeper and deeper in his negative thoughts about the future, he felt a horrible weight pushing down on his heart and his shoulders – he was totally despaired.
It was not long before tears started dropping down his scarred face, straight from the darkness that had suddenly taken over his soul. His weeping eyes turned to the icon of the Cross that his father had wept some many times before, when he himself was young, taking part in a very similar round of anxieties about the future of his own family back then.
published in Netweek Magazine 11-2-2015 (in Greek)
Ενώ η κρίση μάς έχει χτυπήσει την πόρτα εδώ και μία πενταετία, η αγορά φαίνεται να αδυνατεί να ανακάμψει από μόνη της, δεδομένου ότι η έλλειψη ρευστότητας, αλλά και η αδυναμία περαιτέρω βραχυπρόθεσμου δανεισμού για την κίνηση των εταιρειών, μικρών και μεσαίων, τις αναγκάζει σε δυσπραγία και αποφυγή λήψης επιχειρηματικών ρίσκων, τα οποία θα μπορούσαν να αναστρέψουν την κατάσταση.
Published in Netweek Magazine 17-1-2015 (in Greek)
Στη μετά Snowden εποχή είναι πλέον προφανές ότι οι περισσότερες αναπτυγμένες κοινωνίες δείχνουν ιδιαίτερη ευαισθησία στην προστασία των ανθρωπίνων δικαιωμάτων, παραχωρώντας, παράλληλα, σχετικά εύκολα το βασικό δικαίωμα της ιδιωτικότητας, προς όφελος της λειτουργικότητας στις καθημερινές ψηφιακές εφαρμογές και χρήσεις των social media.
Το World Wide Web Foundation, του οποίου προεδρεύει ο Μπέρνερς Λι, μέτρησε πρόσφατα τη συνεισφορά του Web στην κοινωνική, οικονομική και πολιτική πρόοδο 86 χωρών. Στις διαπιστώσεις της αναφοράς περιλαμβάνονται τα εξής σημεία:
- Το 74% των χωρών είτε στερούνται ξεκάθαρων και αποτελεσματικών κανόνων ουδετερότητας διαδικτύου (net neutrality) και/ή δημιουργούν υπόνοιες για διακρίσεις όσον αφορά στη διακίνηση πληροφορίας σε αυτό.
- Το 62% των χωρών αναφέρουν ότι το Web παίζει σημαντικό ρόλο στην πυροδότηση κοινωνικής ή πολιτικής δραστηριότητας
- Το 74% των χωρών δεν κάνουν αρκετά πράγματα για να σταματήσουν την online παρενόχληση των γυναικών.
It has been the argument for every single generation of humanity, after rational thinking has been attributed to the homo sapiens (or even homo erectus), the fact that what exists is what you see and what you can understand from what you see. On the other hand, it has always been a mystery what everyone of us, humans, has felt when glimpsing up in the sky in a clear cold winter day, with scattered stars glittering in the sky mantle next to the big moon, giving us very few clues of who put them there, what they mean for us, and what we can learn without really understanding “the language”. That “language” which was later termed religion, meta-physics, or so many other names, and has been somehow stable in that it was more or less perceived through the eyes of faith – and the “translation” religious high-priests and prophets of all dogmas could provide as part of their own journey of understanding and, sometimes, undeniable personal experience of apocalyptic nature, that gave extra-sensory knowledge, ahead of their time…
As we pass through another Christmas Eve, we tend to summon the days of the year that passed, here in Greece, the birth-place of Democracy (aka Justice), the provider of the Universal language long before English was invented, the host of the greatest minds in the history of mankind, as well as the worst teammates – be it in micro or macro level. In this crisis-ridden country of all expectations, we have come to get accustomed to talks about economy and politics (as if they are the only factors of success) and completely missed the point of faith, the single most powerful notion that Christmas per se is based upon.
Anything But Linear…
A few years ago, Albert Einstein as well as the doctrines of Constantin Carathéodory (his teacher) and Stephen Hawking (a mighty “supernova-mind, equal contender of the other two in scientific significance) have pushed the limits of scientific theory so far that scientists themselves are still gasping to understand it all and put it in simple, easy-to-understand terms for common folks like me and you.
Arguably, what is more important, though, is that all three of them before breaking-out the news to us that half of previous our knowledge of the universe was just garbage or kindergarten staff, they had to break away themselves from what was considered axiomatic – and, therefore, unquestionable.
Ομιλία στα Ελληνικά του Σταμάτη Πασσά για Business και IT Ethics που δώθηκε στις 5 Νοεμβρίου στους Μεταπτυχιακούς Φοιτητές του Τμήματος Δημόσιας Διοίκησης της Παντείου Σχολής (Επίλογος από τον Γιώργο Ράικο)
Σήμερα, 5 Νοεμβρίου 2014, ημέρα της Αγίας Επιστήμης, γιορτάζει το σύνολο του παγκόσμιου επιστημονικού δυναμικού.
Στο βιβλίο «Μεθοδολογία της Επιστημονικής Σκέψης και Έρευνας», Εκδόσεις Μπένου, σελίδα 6, ο Καθηγητής Σταύρος Θεοφανίδης τονίζει ότι και στην αρχαιότητα, η Επιστήμη εορταζόταν ως θεότητα, και μάλιστα είχε μητέρα της την Ευδαιμονία – δηλαδή τον καλό Δαίμονα – σε ελεύθερη μετάφραση την αέναη ανησυχία για την κατάκτηση της γνώσης και την κατανόηση των φυσικών και μεταφυσικών φαινομένων και σκέψεων.
Σε μία εποχή που η αντίληψη της οικονομικής κρίσης καταδυναστεύει κάθε προσπάθεια για μετεξέλιξη στη βάση της πίστης για το καλύτερο αύριο και της καθημερινής προσπάθειας επίτευξης ομαδικών στόχων σε κοινωνικό επίπεδο, η Επιστήμονες σαν και εσάς καλούνται να απεμπολήσουν τη δυναστεία του φόβου και της ακύρωσης και να «βουτήξουν» κυριολεκτικά στα βαθιά νερά του αγνώστου για το αύριο, με τη σιγουριά όμως ότι και οι λύσεις θα δωθούν και το «καλό κ’αγαθόν» θα λειτουργήσει για άλλη μία φορά όπως λειτούργησε και εις τους αιώνες σε αντίστοιχες σκοτεινές στιγμές της Ιστορίας.
Athens is once again on the rise. Dealt a black eye during the financial crisis and the ensuing media coverage of the unrest, the country has pulled itself together and its capital has never been more lively. With visitor numbers back up, a recent New York Times article touting the town, and a new campaign to make curious tourists feel more at home (#ImAnAthenian), Athens has regained its confidence and is ready to show the world why this city is the next big thing.
The power of change is so strong, that anyone resisting it, simply gets washed-away. On the other hand, anyone flowing with the power of change, can accomplish things outside of the realm of the set of possibilities. Some call it synchronicity, others attribute it to mere chance, others even assign it to the field of quantum physics. It seems, that riding the wave of change is the best strategy for anyone to follow every day. This is called the “no-resistance strategy”.
Yet the comfort zone that we often find ourselves so attached to, is one of the hardest inhibitors in the acceptance of change, and the necessary art of letting-go, what we will call “Attachment-free Zone of Being”, where no one or nothing is necessary, except our firm belief that we are living in the NOW and that we are being taken care of, constantly. That’s a logical mindset to hit upon and accept, through the typical paths of logical reasoning.
[By Asking for Guidance from Above and allowing room for change]
Our emotions run hot and cold, and we are thrown challenges every single second of the day… We are on constant trial…
How are we going to cope with what is happening to us? What is this unforeseen challenge that I am up against? Why am I going through this? Unfortunate unforeseen events and happenings I don’t quite want to be dealing with are coming right at me and you…
Now ain’t that a statement! Let’s analyze this simple factual sentence, to get more depth in the inherent multiple meanings…
“Life is” is a definitive reference to a set of all things that exist – that is all that can be captured by the human senses – as well as all the unseen forces that create, coordinate and promote life per se. Then again, if we define life as a mathematical set of “creatures” that can been called “living”, still this set remains open as species can become extinct or can still being discovered in the depths of the seas or the microscope of the biologists in observing the almost infinite permutations of a single virus over time.
As children, we are often being asked by our elders to decide what we would like to be when we grow up. This question at that time strikes as quite odd, as we seem to consider adulthood as a million light years away. Yet, we often offer back an answer that will please the elders, just to get ourselves out of the awkward query.
The odd thing though, as we grow older, is that not only we are less often being asked this same question, but that we ourselves seem to postpone to give ourselves a clear answer. Instead, we indulge in the boxed templates of successful people that society offers as ready-made recipes. On the other hand, the close relatives revolt at us when, out of sheer honesty, we break-out the news that “none of these ‘templates’ work for us – at least not for the time being…”
The phone rings but nobody answers it. This was indeed a change…The telephone has never been left in the office to ring twice. His hear was beating stronger than the sound of the phone ringing over and over again, till the moment Eugene opened the door and saw Dimitri standing on his chair, in front of his cute sign with a marker on his hand correcting the word “Tomorrow” to “TODAY!” (all in capital letters).
Today was the real keyword for Dimitris, the one that could unlock a door that remains shut for many years. This reminded him the single most important milestone of his life: His father’s death. We always wished things would be different between him and his dad, but unfortunately, the “tomorrow” was faster than him…his dad perished leaving Dimitris unable to establish contact with him. He always said that tomorrow things will be better for the two of them, but…
As “New Age Children”, we have learned to grow fast, succeed often and fail even more often, take the shortcut, eat fast –food rather than sit to the family table, change partners when they go bad on us, watch TV throughout the weekends (and we call that fun!), hit the subway and fail to meet eye-to-eye with a single person (or when we do, we shy away), feel awkward when someone says good morning in the elevator, fail to see the landscape as we drive while we speak all the way over the bionic extension to our ears called mobile phone, (not too much of a mobile when it acts as our landline on the house, with the exception you can not claim you missed the call)…