Siemens to Buy CD-adapco for Close to $1 Billion: Report

Siemens to Buy CD-adapco for Close to $1 Billion: Report

Siemens AG, Europe’s biggest industrial group, has agreed to buy CD-adapco, a privately held US engineering software firm, for close to $1 billion (roughly Rs. 6,778 crores) in cash, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Siemens’s deal with CD-adapco could be announced as early as Monday, the person said, asking not to be identified because the agreement is not yet public. The two companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Melville, New York-based CD-adapco makes computer programs used by engineers to simulate the inner workings of an engine. Those products will complement a business unit of Siemens focused on product lifecycle management software, the person added.

Since taking over Siemens as chief executive two years ago, former finance chief Joe Kaeser has set out to reshape the German company and make it more profitable and less cumbersome by selling off non-core units.

But Siemens has increasingly had to compete with software companies who can develop technology faster because they have a sole focus. Only 5 percent of Siemens’ 350,000 employees are software engineers.

Siemens said in December it would raise its research and development budget as it seeks to maintain an edge in technology innovation over arch-rival General Electric Co.

The sale comes after CD-adapco’s co-founder and CEO Steve MacDonald passed away last September. He was succeeded by his widow, Sharron MacDonald, who was named interim CEO and president.

Established in 1980 and still controlled by its founders, the company has 900 employees in 50 offices and has achieved $200 million (roughly Rs. 1,355 crores) in annual revenue and an annual growth rate of 15 percent for the past five years, according to its website. Its main competitor in engine simulation software is Ansys Inc.

Nasa hired CD-adapco to help with simulation of structural engineering problems following the Space Challenger disaster in 1986. Car maker Renault SA’s designers have also used CD-adapco software to simulate engine combustion, cooling and exhaust for Formula One race cars
© Thomson Reuters 2016


At 83, Former US Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld Develops a Mobile Game

At 83, Former US Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld Develops a Mobile Game

Former US Secretary of Defence Donald Rumsfeld has released a mobile card game at the age of 83. Called Churchill Solitaire, it’s a card game former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill played throughout World War II to improve his strategic thinking. Rather than code it himself, voice memos were sent to the developers with his ideas and feedback.

“Instead of capturing history, it is getting a bit artsy,” he wrote in a memo wherein he suggested ways to introduce scenes from World War II and quotes from Churchill. The game has a World War II theme and lets you progress through ranks from Sandhurst Cadet to Prime Minister.

Rumsfeld said that he was first given the rules of the game by Andre de Staercke, a diplomat who was mentored by Churchill after he escaped Belgium during World War II. It is said that Churchill created and played this version of Solitaire to combat insomnia.

(Also see: Crashlands, Music Memos by Apple, Kickstarter for Android, and More Apps To Check Out)

“The game itself reflects Churchill’s leadership qualities and personality: thinking two or three steps ahead at any given moment; making sacrifices to attain a larger goal, taking advantage of luck and opportunity; and relying on guile, cunning, and total concentration in the quest for ultimate victory,” a description on the game’s website reads.

Both the Churchill family and Rumsfeld are donating their share of profits to charitable causes.

“This is not a profit-making endeavour on either of our parts. The Churchill family’s profits from the game, like mine, will go to charity,” he said on Medium.

The game is available for free on iOS with microtransactions. An Android version is also in the works.


Twenty-one brilliant things only Margaret Atwood could say – and she did

Twenty-one brilliant things only Margaret Atwood could say – and she did
Photo Credit: Jaipur Literature Festival
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At 76, Author, poet, and all-around rockstar Margaret Atwood seems unstoppable. She was unfailingly sharp and wickedly funny through all her public appearances in India, at the Jaipur Literature Festival and then in Delhi. Here are some of our favourite things from all that Atwood said:

On writers being “cheap dates”
All of us authors descend from the village storyteller. As Canadian writer Robertson Davies used to characterise this function, “Give me a silver penny, and I will tell you a golden tale.” Note that it’s only one penny. As I said, [writers are] cheap dates.

On stories and growing older
Your romantic tragedy when you were nineteen becomes a funny anecdote by the time you’re forty five. And then, thirty years later, you can’t remember their name.

On the unfreedom of speech and expression
In an age that persecutes deviants, you can yet lose your life for being the possessor of a dangerous or unacceptable story. Words are powerful, which means that words can also be fatal.

On readers and writers
… For writers and readers are joined at the hip. Every act of writing presupposes a reader, even if it’s your own secret journal that you are writing, and the future reader is you.

On writing being an optimistic act
If you have publication in mind, you are looking at the great unknown. The sea, the ocean, the vast universe of readers into which you plan to throw your tiny bottle of a book, with your very tiny story or poetry enclosed within it. Will anyone ever find it? Will anyone ever read it? If so, will they like it? Will anyone hear your voice telling them a story? You hope so.

What writing can do
Writing is also the primary way in which the unknown, the obscure, the undervalued, and the neglected can become known. All over the world, writing has been the means by which light is shed on darkness. Whether the darkness of oppressive regimes, of lives lived in poverty, of the oppression of women, of discrimination of so many kinds.

On Harper and Trudeau in Canada
I was describing what had happened to Canada during the zombie apocalypse [as part of a guest appearance on the Zombies Run game]. The entire government had become zombified… this was under the Harper regime. It’s come back to life. In fact, we have a Prime Minister that is so cool we can’t get used to it.

On setting her latest dystopia in the USA
Canada’s too difficult a place to set real dystopias, because as we have just seen, Canada’s too shrieking nice to go all the way. When it looked as though we were heading that way, all sorts of Canadians formed citizens’ groups and dis-elected the former government.

There are a lot of areas of Canadian life in which you don’t see this fabled niceness, but I think the previous government had gone a step too far in the other direction for the average Canadian.

On utopia and the US
The United States itself, in its beginning, was a utopian experiment, done by the Puritans. They thought they were going to set up the kingdom of god on earth, they were going to be better than everybody else, they were going to be a city upon a hill, a light to all nations. Has that worked out? Not entirely, although in some areas such as Coca Cola, it kind of has.

On dots
I’m of the generation where there were a lot of dots [in place of sex scenes]. I mourn their passing. We’ve had to become much more explicit since those days. Once upon a time we could say, in romantic novels [and magazines], “And then they were one. Dot dot, dot dot dot.” You didn’t have to go into any details, so it left a lot to the reader’s imagination. And what imaginations they were.

On the future, and on inequality
On the one hand, things are going to get so much better, because think of all the astonishing discoveries we are making. On the other hand, things are going to get a lot worse because think of climate change, food shortages, and all the other things. Which is going to get there first? The utopian or the dystopian? Or is it going to be a mix, utopian for some, dystopian for others – as it is at the moment.

On pushback from her publishers
Either they want me to write agreeable 19th century historical fiction, which we find comforting, because it is in the past. I understand it, right now I’m stuck into Wolf Hall the TV version, and what nice clothing they had in the Renaissance to be sure, but it was unevenly distributed. Or they want me to write social realism, but I don’t see why one can’t write both [realist and speculative fiction].

On being a cat person
I’ve always been a cat person, it was my longing in my youth to have one, but I was not allowed to have one because we lived up in the woods so often. But I finally got my hands on one, immediately dressed it up in a bonnet. I’ve had them through the years.

On Angel Catbird, her new comic book superhero
He has an identity crisis. Half cat, half bird, do I save this, or do I eat it? He’s gotten involved with other people who’re also mutant, some of them having inherited it. One of them is called Count Catula, who is a combination of a cat, a bat, and a vampire. We like him.

On women writers in the 19th century
The novel wasn’t considered an art then, it was a low form. That’s why women wrote novels with impunity. It wasn’t considered too high for them. But there are very few women poets in the 19th century. Poetry was considered too much for our tiny brains.

On women’s empowerment, and writing about women (in response to an audience question)
Looked at as a whole, I would by no means say that the push for better treatment of women has been a failure. I don’t think it has been a total success, but my view of human beings is that these things go by stages and cycles.

I do point out to you where I have one whole novel where the narrator is a man. I wrote that because I keep getting questions like yours – why do you keep writing about women? People don’t notice Oryx and Crake.

On genre
Genres are useful for bookstores so they know what shelf to put them on. People who dismiss books based on the shelf they’re on are not serious readers, in my opinion.

On prisons for profit
There is a long human history of prisons for profit. There is incentive to criminalise more people so you can make more profit, is it not? Yes it is.

On human ingenuity
We’re going to have to invent ourselves out of our own inventions. We’re going to need to be ingenious in order to overcome problems caused by our own ingenuity.

On the origins of The Handmaid’s Tale
(This was in response to Patrick French asking her whether her travels in Afghanistan, Iran and India contributed to her writing the classic The Handmaid’s Tale).

People jump to that conclusion quickly, because they have not gone into the American and European history of the treatment of women. Nobody has a monopoly on the mistreatment of women. Things actually went backward for women in 19th century Europe, and one of the reasons I wrote the book was because at the time, they wanted women back in the home in the USA. They hadn’t figured out how yet, so I did it for them.

On the coffeehouse movement
The one in Canada was called the Bohemian Embassy. Some people thought it was a real embassy, and used to write to it, asking for visas. […] I was twenty. I was there. That was where I first read my rather awful poetry of those days, and learned how to deal with emergencies, such as electrical failures and other poets who were drunk.


Maharashtra’s deradicalisation plan could just replace one kind of propaganda with another

The Daily Fix: Maharashtra's deradicalisation plan could just replace one kind of propaganda with another
Photo Credit: Reuters
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The Latest: Top stories of the day
1. A Tanzanian student in Bangalore was allegedly stripped and beaten by a mob, and her car torched, while the police looked on.
2. Union Minister Rajnath Singh says the Indian government will stand by Pakistan if it takes decisive action against terror.
3. Ten soldiers go missing after an avalanche hits the Siachen region in Kashmir.

The Big Story: Anti-radicalisation

Maharashtra is going to fight them in the textbooks, fight them in the schools. Under instructions from the Union home ministry to draw up a comprehensive strategy to counter the spread of the Islamic State, the state government has rolled out itsderadicalisation programme. It includes opening up vyayamshalas in minority areas, making the National Cadet Corps as well as the Bharat Scouts and Guides compulsory in minority schools, and having a media outlet to pour “mainstream thoughts and values” into minority youth. This is accompanied by a socio-economic strategy to bring minority communities into the mainstream.

Better opportunities might go a long way in countering the appeal of extremist ideology; material deprivations and social exclusion have been known to drive youth to terror. But the rest of the deradicalisation programme raises a question: in its aggressive mainstreaming of the minority, is the government merely replacing one kind of propaganda with another? The alternative to religious extremism seems to be a muscular nationalism. This is to be laced with some yoga – the Bharatiya Janata Party’s magic cure to all problems.

Maharashtra could take some lessons from Britain’s misadventure with counter terrorism. “Prevent”, the David Cameron government’s programme to fight radicalisation, has only alienated the country’s Muslims, who constantly feel their Britishness called into question. Researcher Aminul Hoque notes how one of the major sites of tension is the school, where the government has bullishly gone about teaching “British values”.

The Maharashtra government also seems to ignore other major causes for resentment among minorities: entrenched biases that prompt the police to indiscriminately round up and arrest Muslim youth every time there is a terror attack, the slurs and prejudices that have forced the community into ghettos of deprivation. The state government’s programme asks the Muslim community to reinvent itself, but it leaves out other communities that play a part in the process of radicalisation.

The Big Scroll: on the day’s big story
Ann Aly of the Conversation asks whether “lone wolves” are terrorists or simply gunmen.
Aminul Hoque of the Conversation on how young British Muslims are alienated by the rhetoric of counter-terrorism.
TK Devasia on how a Muslim outfit in Kerala campaigns against the IS ideology.

Politicking and policying
1. In Jammu and Kashmir, a questionnaire distributed by the police, seeking details about the sects to which citizens belong and their links to militancy or separatism, sparks widespread anger.
2. Bihar chief minister and Janata Dal (United) leader Nitish Kumar is reportedly planning a mahagatbandhan against the Bharatiya Janata Party in the Uttar Pradesh elections next year.
3. The Congress plans a Dalit meet later this month, with vice president Rahul Gandhi as one of the speakers.

1. In the Indian Express, K Satyanarayana argues that Rohith Vemula’s death should focus attention on the rites of exclusion on college campuses.
2. In the Hindu, Suhas Palshikar on how the BJP has combined middle class anxieties and media excitement to stay in power.
3. In the Business Standard, AV Rajwade on the problem with inflation targeting.

Don’t miss…

Reema Omer on how military courts in Pakistan cannot be a quick fix solution to terror:

The operation of military courts has come at great cost to human rights and the judiciary’s independence, which has been argued in detail on these pages. The promised “quick results”, however, are yet to be seen. This is not surprising, as the very rationale behind the establishment of military courts is flawed, if not deliberately deceptive.

The premise of the 21st Amendment was a hastily constructed narrative that “civilian courts have failed”. This claim was supported by assertions that civilian anti-terrorism courts have high rates of acquittal and judges deliberately let “terrorists” off the hook, either because of fear or sympathy.

Notwithstanding the fact that equating justice with the rate of convictions is abhorrent to the rule of law (only in authoritarian regimes lacking an independent judiciary are there no acquittals), curiously, none of the advocates of military courts, whether in parliament or in the media, presented any evidence to demonstrate why the civilian judiciary is incapable of bringing perpetrators of terrorism to justice.

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