Book reviews are fun to do, especially when you love to read, and love what you read. These were my thoughts exactly when I received my copy of Mr.Sudhakar Ram’s “Connected Age”.
Little did i know at that time, I am in for a reading-shock of mammoth proportions.
The Title : The Connected Age
The title leads to the assumption that this book is about technology, internet of things, Social media connects etc etc.Well, you are correct to assume so. Mr.Ram, being a technical person, it is only natural to have technical jargons as part of his everyday vocabulary.. However, not on the context of “Technology” of things…. but.. more so on the “Philosophy” of being….
The Tagline : Being The Best You Can, by Reinventing Your World
Isn’t this THE typical “philosophy” pitch?..Be the best, Bring out the best, Reinvent yourself etc etc. Well well.. not wrong either. Book tells exactly what it says .. but not the way we are used to hearing them from God-(wo)men, and Self-styled Gurus. Just don’t let that cloud your perception. Keep an open mind.
The Published version of synopsis here - @ The New Constructs, Mr.Sudhakar Ram’s blog.
My version of the Synopsis
As much as we would stop to smell the roses, the stench of the nearby sewage is impossible to ignore. Same applies to the ecosystem (a.k.a THE Earth) we live in.
As much as we wonder over the advances in technology that has enabled us to lead a (perceived) better lifestyle, we fail to ponder over the perils of continued use of the same technologies.
Just as energy can neither be created, nor destroyed, but can only be converted from one form to another. However, in our case, we humans since the 21st century have been converting THE Earth’s resources from one form to another, with unforeseen & undesired consequences (... eg..think “..Plastic...”).
Now is the time, to Sit Up, Reflect on (consequences of the) past actions, Act up (to right the wrong) at an individual level (... think... Ban Plastic..),
Diligent and socially conscious individuals can be our crusaders of change for better, by starting at grassroot level, ie.. personal - professional - community level - corporate level - Villages / Panchayats / Municipality level collaborative governance - state level - national level - and last but not the least, bring change at a Global Level.
Now, The Review
Short Review: This book is for the tech savvy-philosophers, and none otherwise.
There are 2 types of readers. Those who read for pleasure & those who read for purpose.In addition to the generic nature of the book, one is able to enjoy the reading experience solely based on the individual’s know-how of the things addressed in the book. Such a book is too serious to be used for reading-pleasure, and too light to be considered for a user-manual. The Connected Age, is one such book.
Philosophy has a strange way of sneaking into our thoughts. It wedges within, by the proverbial “foot in the door” technique when we are either disappointed, or hopeless, or both.
I believe, Philosophy (for the common man) is our psyche’s defence mechanism to deal with rejection. As much as despair pins us down, hope lets us soar.
“The Connected Age” is not for light reading of any sort. Heavy use of technical terms is an outright put off to a casual reader glancing through the book on a shop window. However, this doesn’t undermine the philosophy shared by Mr.Ram in any way. His views and visions are profound, except that the vocabulary is a bit too intense.
As we take the walk with Mr.Sudhakar Ram, we begin to accept our recklessness at a rather personal level at utilising the Earth’s resources, and abusing our privileges. After this guilt - trip, Mr.Ram brings in his mentoring expertise to motivate the reader to be the change one wants to be Further to this, he takes huge a leap of faith, and in wishful thinking, expects every citizen to be THE Ideal Reader who would act only in the correct manner, and settle for nothing less..
Sadly, Neither we, ourselves, nor the personalities we encounter match up to our Ideal Connected-Age Reader. But then, its the little efforts that count to make up the bigger change. So, i guess there is a little bit of everything for every one in this book.
If you can read past the first chapter without reaching for google on your smartphone, then this is a Must Read.