The more we know, the more we realize there is yet to be discovered – In praise of ignorance

“Science, we generally are told, is a very well-ordered mechanism for understanding the world, for gaining facts, for gaining data,” biologist Stuart Firestein says in today’s TED talk. “I’d like to tell you that’s not the case.”


Firestein explains that ignorance, in fact, grows from knowledge — that is, the more we know, the more we realize there is yet to be discovered. The purpose of gaining knowledge is, in fact, “to make better ignorance: to come up with, if you will, higher quality ignorance,” he describes. “The purpose is to be able to ask lots of questions — to be able to frame thoughtful, interesting questions — because that’s where the work is.”

The Columbia University professor of biological sciences peppers his talk with beautiful quotations celebrating this very specific type of ignorance. Here, a few he highlighted, along with a few other favorites:

1. “Thoroughly conscious ignorance is the prelude to every real advance in science.” James Clerk Maxwell, a nineteenth-century physicist quoted by Firestein.

2. “Part of what we also have to train people to do is to learn to love the questions themselves. If all you want in life are answers, then science is not for you. We have things that always give you answers to things–like religion… In science, on the frontier, the answers haven’t come yet. That’s why we have people working on the frontier.” Neil deGrasse Tyson on Bullseye.

3. “The great obstacle to discovering the shape of the earth, the continents and the ocean was not ignorance but the illusion of knowledge.” Daniel J. Boorstin, The Discoverers.

4. “Science is always wrong. It never solves a problem without creating 10 more.” George Bernard Shaw, at a dinner celebrating Einstein (quoted by Firestein in his book, Ignorance: How it Drives Science).

5. “Every answer given on principle of experience begets a fresh question.” Immanuel Kant‘s Principle of Question Propagation (featured in Evolution of the Human Diet).

6. “I know nothing except the fact of my ignorance.” Socrates, quoted in Diogenes Laertius, Lives of the Philosphers (via the Yale Book of Quotations).

7. “Ignorance is the first requisite of the historian — ignorance, which simplifies and clarifies, which selects and omits, with a placid perfection unattainable by the highest art.” Lytton Strachey, biographer and critic, Eminent Victorians, 1918 (via the Yale Book of Quotations).

8. “In an honest search for knowledge, you quite often have to abide by ignorance for an indefinite period.” Erwin Schrodinger, quantum physicist (quoted in Gaither’s Dictionary of Scientific Quotations).

9. “There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovered exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarrely inexplicable. There is another theory which states that this has already happened.” Douglas Adams, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy “Fit the Seventh” radio program, 1978 (via the Yale Book of Quotations).

10. “Ignorance follows knowledge, not the other way around.” Stuart Firestein, Ignorance: How It Drives Science.

CourtseyTED Blog – SCIENCE TED Talks – Posted by: Jessica Gross

Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music – September 2013

Welcome to September 2013 edition of Carnival of Blogs on Golden Era of Hindi Film Music.

As usual, we commence our blog festival with posts on Anniversaries.

Asha Bhosle turns 80 this year. Dusted Off presented 10 different moods of Asha Bhosle in Asha in Ten Moods.

Songs of Yore continues with the series of S D Burman’s association with different playback singer in Asha Bhosle’s best songs by SD Burman.

And here are some of the other articles on Asha Bhosle, which I ‘searched’ while looking for some more of the celebration articles.

Zee News presents an interesting slideshow – Asha Bhosle`s songs through the decades,  taking you on a journey with her through her decades in Bollywood and more.

Madhu in her bog posts has A Musical Journey With MadhuAsha Bhonsle Songs – S. D. Burman music articles gives an overview – Asha Bhosle: Working with great music directors

And HarveyPam’s Mohan Ki Asha, and very rich comments thereto, is a great post on Madan Mohan’s Asha Bhosle songs.

Songs of Yore has paid a very unique tribute to Mukesh, on his anniversary on 27th August, through quite an impartial discussion on “why did SD Burman use him so sparingly” in Mukesh’s best songs by SD Burman . Shri Arunkumar Deshmuks reveals, in Comment #1, that Mukesh- S D Burman combination output was (just) 12 songs (only). Shri N Venkatraman, in Comment#19, fills up the two remaining songs.

Conversations Over Chai comes back to active role on the scene, through  My Favourites: Songs of Praise – “songs that did liken a woman to more than a poultry dish?”. It is also a celebration (though a bit belated) of the Second Anniversary of the blog

Vithalbhai Patel, who contributed several earthy songs in late 1970s, also passed away on 7th September. Here is list of his Hindi Films songs, as a token of our tribute to the departed soul. Biren Kothari, Pallete,  has paid an objectively passionate tribute to Vithalbhai Patel in the article (in Gujarati) ગીતકાર વિઠ્ઠલભાઈ પટેલની વિદાય: પ્યાર મેં સૌદા નહીં.

We have an unfortunate situation, where we are to pay homage to Madhubala Zaveri, on her taking up that long, fateful journey on 11-09-2013. Biren Kothari has penned  મધુબાલા ઝવેરીનો સ્વરવિલય and placed video clips of some of her songs.Madhubala Zaveri

We will also bring some more sites / posts on Madhubala Zaveri on this page:


Madhu’s page – Talat Mehmood & Madhubala Zaveri Duets’s Madhubala Zaveri

And of course one son that always bring memories of Madhubala Zaveri, even if shae ay have a small portion in it is Boot Polish’s Thaher Jara O Janne Wale

We now change our tack – to Mohammad

Vijay Bavdekar digs the equation of S D Burman and Mohammad Rafi deeper in  Maestro SDBurman, Evergreen Dev Anand & All Time Great Rafi Sahab & Hidden Truths. Here are the high points – the lips movement and expressions given on face by Dev Anand, perfectly matches the Rafi’s throw of words / look back to the Golden Era of Hindi film music, you will find that other music directors kept Kishore away & preferred Rafi for Dev Anand / One interesting thing is that Rafi was Burmanda’s first choice for other Heros  / Look at the ”Trend setter-Singer ” equations,”Dilip-Rafi, Dev-Kishore and Raj-Mukesh”. Rafi sang most of the songs for Dilip Kumar, Rafi has an almost equal share with Kishore for Dev Anand and off course Mukesh sang major number of songs for Raj Kapoor, but Rafi also gave playback to Raj Kapoor for 31 songs.

Dances on the Footpath’ has presented A Song Performed By Carmen Miranda and Vasunthara Devi aka Vyjayanthimala’s Mother. The two songs, one Vasunthara performs is “ayyayyo-vasuntharadevi-mangammasabatham 1941” and the one by from which the song is inspired is “That Night In Rio (1941) – Carmen Miranda – “I, Yi, Yi, Yi, Yi (I Like You Very Much)“.

Dances On The  Footpath” also has designed a very rich YT channel  LifeIsaTrain‘s which has Classical Indian dancing feet / Noor Jehan / Kumari Kamala Lakshman and Recent uploads sub-chapters awaiting to be explored.

The discussions on S D Burman and Vyjayantimala , in this edition as well as in the last edition of Blog Festival spurred me to visit “100 Years Of Bollywood” – an excellent channel on YT an return with S.D Burman- The King Of Melody  and Vyjayanthimala – The First Female Superstar Of Bollywood  respectively.

I would also like to document the finds, Music Maestros Part-1 and Music Maestros Part-2.

My friend Samir Dholakia had forwarded a message form his friend about another YT channel: Portrait of Director –  This is a series directed by veteran film-maker Ramesh Sharma for Doordarshan and it captures the various aspects of film-making of master directors like Mrinal Sen, Ritwik Ghatak, Manmohan Desai, Shyam Benegal, Raj Kapoor and Bimal Roy.

We would, now onwards, share at least one of the clips from both these channels to bring them on same page here.

Now, we pay our first visit to Indian film posters from 1930[silent] to1970 [color]. We will take up DIL DE KAR DARD LIYA HAI MAINE SUNG BY JAGMOHAN… (Jagmohan Sursagar NFS)(1940)  and film “Fariyaad” (1942). The first one may be a repeat to many, but it is a treat worth repeating, every time. We take to full listening of Fariyaad (1942)’s these songs:

Aye Dil-e-Bequarar Bol – Shamim Kamal Pasha

Kahoji Ji Na Lage Bin Tere  – Ishwarlal , Shamim Kamal Pasha

I chose to pick up Fariyad (1942) here, because that immediately reminded me of Fariyad (1964) which had memorable Snehal Bhatkar songs:

Aap Ne Huzoor Mujse – Suman Kalyanpur , Mohammad Rafi –

Teri Nazar Ne To  Kafir Bana Diya – Mubarak Begum, Mohammad Rafi

Wo Dekho Dekh Raha Papiha –  Suman Kalyanpur, Mahendra Kapoor

Songs of Yore has presented Best songs of 1953: Wrap Up 2. Undoubtedly a very difficult job of doing a putting in ‘other’ female singers in the most relevant and respectful consideration in an otherwise Lata Mangeshkar dominated category. As we had decided last time, we will take a look at all the ‘wrap-up’s together, in more details – may be as a full-fledged separate post.

It is heartening to note that we are able to expand our catchment sources for information to be shared. However, there must be much more that remains to be explored and shared…….

I, indeed, await your valued suggestions and inputs.. …


“Long before the heady, rock star-like run for the White House, before “Ich bin ein Berliner,” before the Cuban Missile Crisis, the pillbox hats, Marilyn’s “Happy birthday, Mr. President,” Camelot and the limo drive through Dallas, John and Jackie Kennedy were a young newlywed couple much like any other newlywed couple — with one notable difference: by the time of their wedding they were, in a sense, already superstars.

Jacqueline Bouvier in gorgeous Battenburg wedding dress with her husband Sen. John Kennedy as they stand in front of church after wedding ceremonyThe pair had appeared on the cover of LIFE magazine mere months before their wedding, in July 1953, perched on the sloping deck of a sailboat off of Cape Cod, both of them smiling, windblown, emphatically New England-y, beside the cheeky headline, “Senator Kennedy Goes a-Courting.” They were both from prominent, monied, influential families, and they were frequently, together and apart, featured in what are still occasionally called the “society pages” of major newspapers.

When they married in Rhode Island on September 12, 1953, it was national news. LIFE magazine sent photographer Lisa Larsen, then in her late 20s, to cover the highly pub

Bride and bridegroom finally sit down to lunch..

licized event. Her photos from the occasion offer not only a solid before-and-after record of the nuptials, but a surprisingly intimate chronicle of one of the most high-profile American weddings of the 20th century. Here, on the 60th anniversary of John and Jackie Kennedy’s wedding, presents a gallery of the very best of Lisa Larsen’s many pictures from that day.

For its part, LIFE magazine reported on the scene in an article in its September 28, 1963, issue titled, “The Senator Weds”:

The marriage of Washington’s best-looking young senator to Washington’s prettiest inquiring photographer took place in Newport R.I. this month and their wedding turned out to be the most impressive the old society stronghold had seen in 30 years. As John F. Kennedy took Jacqueline Bouvier as his bride, 600 diplomats, senators, social figures crowded into St. Mary’s Church to hear the Archbishop of Boston perform the rites sand read a special blessing from the pope. Outside, 2,000 society fans, some come to Newport by chartered bus, cheered the guests and the newlyweds as they left the church. There were 900 guests at the reception and it took Senator and Mrs. Kennedy two hours to shake their hands. The whole affair, said one enthusiastic guest, was “just like a coronation.”



Carnival of Quality Management Articles and Blogs – September 2013

Welcome to September 2013 edition of Carnival of Quality Management Articles and Blogs.

We begin our current session by drawing upon seemingly unrelated fields.

The first is  Rick Bohan’s article –Volleyball, Chess and the Successful Lean Implementation, where we draw useful learning from the study of sports in so far as Lean and Quality are concerned. “People make use of patterns to evaluate and figure out how to respond to what they see. Make those patterns easy to discern, and they’ll do a better job of keeping processes in control.

First, it speaks to one of the primary foundations of lean, that is, the generation of easy-to-see, easy-to-learn, easy-to-respond-to patterns of work, material flow and information flow.

Second, it speaks to why there can be such strong resistance to even the simplest lean initiatives like 5S and visual factory.  Employees who have spent thousands of hours in their workplaces have formed strong patterns.  What might look like chaos to us, to them makes perfect sense.”

In another article, Standardisation and Climbing Ladders, James Lawther advocates “that without any rungs you have nothing to push against, so you won’t be able to climb any further.

Process Improvement is a lot like climbing a ladder.

But instead of having rungs to push against you have standards. If you don’t create and use operating standards then you have nothing to push against and so no way of moving forward.

Process improvement without standards is a bit like trying to swim up-hill…..futile.”

Michael Hess, MONEYWATCH, in the article Don’t let burning bridges fall on you, makes the point that “Every good businessperson knows the importance of building quality relationships. But I’m surprised at how often people don’t give the same thought to the “quality” with which those relationships end, and the possible ways in which a bad breakup can come back to haunt them.

Most business relationships don’t last forever; employees move on, customers come and go, suppliers are replaced. But what goes around does indeed come around, and paths can cross again, particularly within the same industry or in small communities.”

And here is the last of the present article from which quality professionals can learn a very useful lesson. McKinsey & Company insights, How to make a city great,  asserts that “Successful cities are built on smart growth, efficient government, and collaboration.

By 2030, 60 per cent of the world’s population will live in cities. That could mean great things for economic growth—if the cities handle their expansion wisely. Here’s how.

Mayors are only too aware that their tenure will be limited. But if longer-term plans are articulated—and gain popular support because of short-term successes—leaders can start a virtuous cycle that sustains and encourages a great urban environment.”

Quality and Customer are indeed two inseparable layers. In the present edition, we would take two articles, for two ‘new’ sources:

Jim Clemmer’s article Focus on Overall Customer Experience puts across the issue of customer service – “the operation was a success but the patient died” –  quite succinctly.

Customer CloudCustomer service improvements and measurements often focus on a narrow set of customer interactions or a few steps in the service process. What’s missing is understanding, and improving, the customer’s entire experience.

4 steps to improve the customer journey:

  1. Identify the journeys in which they need to excel
  2. Understand how they are currently performing in each
  3. Build cross-functional processes to redesign and support those journeys
  4. Institute cultural change and continuous improvement to sustain the initiatives at scale

The article concludes with this key point:

“Optimizing a single customer journey is tactical; shifting organizational processes, culture, and mind-sets to a journey orientation is strategic and transformational…engages the organization across functions and from top to bottom, generating excitement, innovation, and a focus on continuous improvement. It creates a culture that’s hard to build otherwise, and a true competitive advantage goes to companies that get it right.””
Jim Benson, @ Quality Digest article Understand Your Customers has put across a wide canvas of who constitute ‘customer’. He further states that “If you don’t know whom the work is for, you don’t know what you’re doing”
And then assuming that you do now ‘know’ your customer, he does suggest five quick actions we should take.

• Be clear about what the customer wants. Yes, this sounds obvious, but how many times have you had to rework something because of a simple initial lack of understanding?
• Be clear about what’s on your plate. No, sorry Ms. Customer, your request isn’t the only thing I must do right now. I wish it was, but life doesn’t work like that. Here’s what I can realistically do.
• Get the customer’s feedback early and often. How soon can you show the customer an interim product? How quickly can you compare expected and actual progress? Earlier feedback = earlier delivery.
• Understand minimum and optimal deliverables. Minimum and optimum deliverables give you a range of success to shoot for. If you’re always aiming for the high point, you will usually underdeliver.
• Work is a relationship. All work is a relationship between the person doing the work and the person receiving it. Communication (again as early as possible) helps both cement the relationship and ensure an appreciated delivery.

We always keenly look at the subject of Performance Management.

Bernard Marr, in the article, The 75 KPIs Every Manager Needs To Know, includes the metrics he considers the most important and informative, and they make a good starting point for the development of a performance management system.

“Before we look at the list I would like to express an important warning: Don’t just pick all 75 – You don’t need or indeed should have all 75 KPIs. Instead, by understanding these 75 KPIs you will be able to pick the vital few meaningful indicators that are relevant for your business.

Finally, the KPIs should then be used (and owned) by everyone in the business to inform decision-making (and not as mindless reporting references or as ‘carrot & stick tools’).”

We now take a look at current Roundup, which now presents a range of views by the ASQ Influential voices, in What’s the Value of Professional Training?

In our regular winding up session from ASQ™ TV: Creating a Global View of Quality,, we have two episodes:

ASQ TV Episode 7: Innovation and Quality

This episode focuses on innovation: what innovation is and the role it plays in quality. Also, learn about an organization in India that used an innovative management model to turn a failing business unit around. Discover how the innovation management cycle can jumpstart innovation at your organization, and take a self-assessment to see what your role is in the innovation process.

ASQ TV Episode 8: Lean

In this episode, learn why less is more! We cover all things lean: What it is and what makes lean projects work; how an emergency response centre used lean to increase efficiency; how to use value stream mapping, a key lean tool; and how you can use lean to better organize your home life. Read the Eurocross Assistance case study at Learn more about value stream maps in the Quality Progress article:–an-introduction.html. For more on lean and Six Sigma, visit

This month we visit Don Brecken @ ASQ’s Influential Voices

Don BreckenDon Brecken, an ASQ Fellow, writes The Quality Advisor blog. Don is management faculty and Southwest Michigan business program advisor for Ferris State University. Don is also a practicing business improvement auditor and consultant; his background includes quality leadership, continuous improvement, operations learning and development, management consulting, quality auditing, quality system implementation, and business improvement auditing.

The Quality Advisor blog is for sharing Brecken’s quality-related posts, which are intended to be of general interest to most readers. After all… “Quality affects us all; it spans all industries, pertains equally to product and service, and should therefore matter to everyone!”

A little more detailed search of the blog, throws up an interesting take on A Practical Approach to Business Improvement Auditing

Business improvement audits, in comparison to QMS Audits as per ISO 9001(:2008) , are bound only by the contractual agreement with the audit client.

An organization’s QMS should serve as a business improvement tool. Clause 8.5.1 of ISO 9001, Continual improvement, requires the organization to continually improve the effectiveness of its QMS through the use of its quality policy, quality objectives, audit results, analysis of data, corrective and preventive actions, and management review. Because the QMS requires these components be used for improvement, the business improvement auditor should assess whether each component is effectively leveraged to improve the organization. Most, if not all of the information the business improvement auditor will need for this assessment should be evident if the auditor knows where to look.

From the present edition, we would also take a detailed visit to the sites of some the leading national or international ‘quality’ organizations. Our such visit(s) may span more than one editions of our blog festival.

This month we will visit Quality Council of India. We begin our tour of QCI site from its Mission To help India achieve and sustain total quality and reliability, in all areas of life, work, environment, products and services, at individual, organisational, community and societal levels.

This has been brilliantly discussed by the then President of India Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam, in his inaugural speech at the 2nd National Quality Conclave on February 9, 2007 at New Delhi:

“My definition of nation prosperity index is equal to GDP including quality of life for all coupled with value system. It is essential to ensure that all the citizens are empowered with good quality of life encompassing nutritious foods, good habitat, clean environment, affordable health care, quality education with value system and productive employment leading to the comprehensive qualitative development of the nation……..”

And we finally round up our present edition with –
Management Improvement Carnival #199
I look forward to your constructive inputs and suggestions…. To improve content and the style of this Blog Festival …

The Tears that Can Make a Smile Come True

1. Why is the man who invests all your money called a broker?      (Contributed by Julie’s Place)

2. Why is it that anything you lose automatically doubles in value?        (Contributed by Migon McLaughin)

3. Should you trust your stockbroker if he’s married to a travel agent?   (Contributed by Cheri Bogowitz)

4. Does everyone have a scheme for getting rich that will not work? And why do most of them enjoy sending junk mail to tell me about it?  (Contributed by Alex Petty)

5. If a fool and his money are soon parted why does this happen to everybody?    (Contributed by Dark Shadow)

7. If Microsoft stock plummets will investors jump out of windows?   (Contributed by JTV)

8. At the end of the day when the Stock Market closes and it loses 207 points why do they all stand up and applaud? (Contributed by The Vent on

9.If the company Fruit-of-the-Loom ever files for bankruptcy, will they be required to file some briefs?  (Contributed by Ed Hexter)

10. Do you think the main purpose of the stock market is to make fools of as many men as possible?   (Contributed by Bernard Baruch)

11. Where I live, it costs $75 to file for bankruptcy. Do you think they will take a cheque?  (Contributed by Danno Z.)

12. .If someone owes you money are you ever really broke?  (Contributed by Gennelle Lee)

13. .How come when it costs you an arm and a leg, you usually only get two fingers?  (Contributed by Paul Nicholls)

14. When things aren’t going our way, why do we say they will get better? How do we know they will?   (Contributed by Valerie)

15. Why won’t my bankruptcy attorney accept payments?  (Contributed by June M.)

16. If all the newspaper companies go bankrupt, what will we use in the bottom of the birdcage?   (Contributed by The Vent on

17. Does anyone notice that JOB stands for Just Over Broke?  (Contributed by Steve)


A Gadzillion Things to Talk About