setembro 24, 2012

The Closing of a Cycle


The closing of a cycle

He sat there with weary eyes and a sullen face. He was the last person in that field and had asked everybody else to leave him there alone. That was the last thing he could do for her, wait and see the last grain of dirty be placed on top of her grave. He knew she was already gone, that there was no afterlife and whatever he was doing; he was doing it for himself. But sitting there and remembering those crazy last two months was all he could do.

They were in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, on their sailboat, as many times before. The storm would come but they knew what to do for it would not be their first storm. So they setup everything as it should be, stored all lose items, lowered all sails, closed all hatches. The storm came as any storm would wind, rain, thunderbolts, noise but quickly enough it progressed into a hurricane and everything started to collapse. His only memories were acknowledging the fact that that seemed to be their last storm and trying to make sure they would be able to leave the boat with enough to survive the storm. So they did, they got their protective suits, the first aid kit and the survival kit and were able to leave the boat before it capsized and sank - to this day he still can't believe they had been able to survive a hurricane with winds and waves that were able to crack his boat hull, but they did.

How many hours they spent in the water they he didn’t know, but it seemed like thirty hours or more. He couldn't remember how was it that they had lost their raft and everything inside it. Eventually they washed ashore in a small island, an island standing alone in the ocean, nothing to be seen for miles. They were alive for their suits were able to keep them from drowning and suffering hypothermia. He had hurt his left shoulder and that ached a lot. She had a swollen knee.

The island was not a bad place as they found out after the first three days. There was plenty of fresh water and fruits available and they could find shelter in a shallow cave that was well protected from the rain and wind. But they were concerned with how long it would take for them to be rescued for they had not been able to send an emergency signal before everything happened. But they knew that his son would start to look for them the next day after missing their routine communication and it allowed them to be tranquil and they took the wait as a little vacation break. Of course they made sure they could be found with some fire, smoke and visual signals.

But fate is not an easy fellow. On one afternoon as he returned from the creek with some fresh water, which had taken him only four minutes to fetch, he found her laying on the ground with the clear signals of a severe allergic reaction. He ran as fast as he could towards her and got to her while she was still alive. She was still able to look him in the eyes and hold his hands before she passed out and eventually died. He couldn't believe it, for she had no known allergies, and also for he knew that if they were in their home, or even in their boat, she would still be alive. He sat there holding her in his arms for the next thirteen hours. For thirteen hours he cried. For thirteen hours he cursed life. For thirteen hours he felt impotent. For thirteen hours he couldn't think of anything else than the hole in his heart. Eventually he got to his feet and started to dig a grave for her.

And fate again played with him. A raft came to the shore of the island and three men came to him. He eventually learned they had read about the disappearing of the couple and when they saw the orange suits hanging as flags on the makeshift poles on the beach they thought they should take a look. But that he only was able to understand some days later, for his initial reaction to seeing his rescue party was not that of normal people. He didn't wave his arms, he didn't smile, and he didn't run towards the men. All he could do was to go back to her body, take her in his arms and walk as slowly as he could towards the ocean. He couldn't explain what he felt on that moment, but it was a feeling that was worse than the one he had felt thirteen hours before. How could it be that she died hours before they were rescued? After 58 days in an isolated island. That had to be a bad nightmare. But he, unfortunately, knew it was not. That was a sad and wicked reality.

He decided it was time to leave the cemetery and go back home, there was no reason for him to stay there, she was not there, she was nowhere, and she was no more.

Eventually he got home and the decision was made, he had all reason to suicide for he had lost two loves already. Twenty years ago his wife died during labor and he raised his son alone for many years until he found his new love. And now that love was also gone. Both died in his arms and he couldn’t cope with that pain again. But he would not suicide, not right away. His son still needed him; his son was still his son, the only living person he loved. So his decision was he would only suicide when that father-son cycle was over. He would wait, no matter how much pain he would have to bear, until his son became a father himself.

Six years, two months and three days were gone and he was there, holding his grandson in his arms, the little boy looked at him and smiled, and that smile was the most beautiful smile he had ever seen. Not only beautiful, but also freeing, he didn’t have to wait a day longer; his suffering would end tonight.

He got home, separated all his antidepressants and anxiety pills, placed them by his bed and started to write a suicide letter to his son.....

“My son, my only love, I am sorry.
I know it is not a brave action to take your own life, but you have to understand that I have suffered enough. Losing the loves of your life, watching them die in your arms, being unable to help is too much for a person to bear.

I have fought through it twice and am tired of all the depression, the nightmares, the increasing doses of drugs, the pain in the heart. I am just too tired. You were the only reason for me to continue, and now I feel I can move on. You are a father yourself and you don’t need me anymore. The cycle is closed and I can now rest.

Again, I am sorry.

Know you are the one person I loved most during my life, you were the reason I kept going. I would do it all over again if it were for you. There is nothing is this world that gave me more joy, happiness and the feeling that life was worth all the pain that comes with it.

The one thing I know for sure after all these year is that I truly love you, have always loved.

Goodbye son!”

His son finished the letter and didn’t even noticed the river of tears that were flowing in his face at the moment, all he could do was to look up and ask, “But father, I don’t understand, you are here, you brought me your suicide note. Why?”

“I will tell you why my son. After I wrote it and read it all over again, there was only one thing I knew for sure, and that thing is that the letter was true, I LOVE YOU. And it being true I couldn’t do anything other than throwing all those pills in the trash and making sure I will love you every second of my life until the day comes that I die naturally.”

julho 25, 2012

My first book

Dear reader,

I am just proud to announce the publishing of my very first book "CAELUM - Computer Aided Eternal Life Ultimate Machine", a sci-fi short story which tells the story of how the recurring dreams of a boy may prevent the end of mankind on a technology controlled world. When eternal life is sought by mankind the results might be too dangerous.  

It is available on Amazon for 1.99$, to check the English version of the book click here
See the cover below....
_______________________________________________________

Cara leitora,

Fico feliz em anunciar a publicação de meu primeiro livro  "CAELUM - Computer Aided Eternal Life Ultimate Machine", uma estória de ficação científica que conta como os sonhos recorrentes de um menino podem ajudar a salvar a humanidade da destruição em um mundo controlado pela tecnologia. Quando se busca pela vida eterna os resultados podem ser desastrosos.

O livro está disponível na Amazon por US$1,99 e para dar uma olhada na versão em português do livro basta clicar aqui.
Veja a capa abaixo....


fevereiro 21, 2012

"How your HR practices can jeopardize your tone at the top" an Article published on SCCE's Compliance & Ethics Professional publication

Usually when we read an article about practices that go against the ethics and compliance framework, we see examples coming from marketing and sales and finance departments. But what about other departments? Are they immune to non-compliance? Of course they are not. Why are we not reading more about non-compliance in other departments? Is it because it is easier for us to write about old or well-known examples? Or, is it because we fear to unveil the fact that many companies allow for unethical practices when those are deemed to be for a greater good (like making war to bring peace)?

I don’t plan to discuss the corporate ethics, for this is too complicated a subject for a small article. But, there are some HR practices that could undermine all your ethics and compliance efforts.

Practice 1: Performing background checks on future employees without their consent
Practice 2: Rewarding good results that are achieved with poor ethics and compliance practices
Practice 3: Creating a parallel control for your outstanding vacation days

Enjoy reading the article  here in this Google Docs link
(the article was originally published on the 04/2011 edition of SCCE's C&EP)

Cheers

Serpa

janeiro 06, 2012

Vinda de longe!

Ela apareceu à porta.
Dele se aproximaria.
De onde vinha? Não se sabia.
Pele muito alva, olhos muitos negros. De onde vinha?
De algum lugar ela vinha.
Não de sua terra. Certeza tinha.
Ele perguntou. Dela nenhuma resposta tinha.
Mas ela vinha.

A ele era ela misteriosa.
Falava seu idioma. Se entendiam.
Muito bem o faziam.
Assim o pensava(m).
Falava seu idioma, não sua língua.
Ou falava ela sua língua?
Seria ele a falar outra?
Nunca se soube. A ela não perguntou.
Aceitou que seria outra.

Diferente em cor.
Diferente em odor. Que odor!
Doce. Inebriante. Diferente.
Mas a ele isso não era o relevante.
Internamente, onde era, de fato, diferente.
Seria ele o diferente?
Mútua é sempre a diferença.

Voltava ele a sua vila.
Voltava a seus amigos.
"Ela? Quem ela?" era o que lhe perguntavam seus amigos.
Não a viam?
Ou a viam, apenas não entendiam?
Seria ele de mente exagerante?
Ou sonhava incessante?
Não sabia.

Não sabia, pois sempre ela aparecia,
ou a ele parecia.
E sumia. Se vinha, se ia.
Em ciclos?
O do Sol seria?
O da Lua?
Não sabia.
Perguntava a seus amigos.
'Quem vinha?' Lhe devolviam.
'Sonha acordado o pobre'.

Partiu. Sumiu.
Se o ciclo do Sol fosse
De um Sol distante assumiu.

Em torno de seu Sol viajaria.
Ciclos e ciclos ele contaria
Se a contar estivesse.
Era um belo dia, ou uma noite seria?
Não importa, Um livro lia
Uma voz ouvia
Um pedido?
Uma mensagem?
Não sabia.
Mesmo sem saber respondia.
Então, tardia
Era ela que lhe sorria.
De longe sorria.
Seria ela? Longe demais parecia.
Ou apenas estrelas do céu que lhe cobria
A ele que dormia.

Nunca soube.
De onde ela vinha.
Ela?!
Ou era ele que de longe vinha?!


* um breve (mini mini)novellete, inspirado, em termos de enredo, nas pequenas estorias de Isaac Asimov (ele que me perdoe) e em um ritmo de algumas obras de, outro maestro, Fernando Pessoa (outro perdão requerido), uma pitada de Dostoyevsk (Irmãos Karamazov) e com inspiração estética de Wall-E (e sua E.V.E.).

** A idéia e linha principal, escondida nas voltas do pequeno texto, é que sim ela existia, mas o visitava de um outro planeta. Um planeta que poderia ser o dele. Uma parábola, ou analogia, para nossa busca pelo igual, pelo comum, pelo "aceitável". Busca essa que pode estar maquiada no vontade de "pertencer", o que nos faz buscar o "igual" que é artificial. O que, de fato, queremos? Nesse mundo capitalista é ter dinheiro. Mas é isso que, realmente, queremos ou apenas buscamos o que de nós se espera querer, e tudo isso nos leva a achar estranho querer, ou gostar, de algo diferente da norma? E, com isso, acharmos que somos nós os loucos, deslocados que "a" vemos quando ninguém mais "a" vê. E que nos convencemos que "ela" não existe? "Ele" é você que lê o texto. "Ela" é aquilo que queres, mas que foge da norma!!! Para pensar ........

janeiro 04, 2012

"The Simplest Possible Code of Conduct for Employees" a featured article on SCCE's - Compliance and Ethics Professional Publication

Um artigo que discute que é sim possível escrever um código de conduta que seja ao mesmo tempo simples o suficiente para ser entendido, curto o suficiente para ser lembrado e que seja válido em todas as possíveis situações em que um colaborador/ funcionário de uma empresa se encontre.

O artigo traz uma resposta de três bullets para o desafio acima. Resposta essa baseada nas três leis da robótica do mestre da ficção científica ('Eu, Robô', 'O Homem Bicentenário') e um fellow-Mensan Isaac Asimov.

Também discuto que

- Complicar demais o assunto compliance e ética é desnecessário
- Que códigos de compliance e ética podem, e devem, ser simples
- Que quanto mais simples um código é, melhor ele atinge os objetivos
- É sim possível escrever um código que seja válido SEMPRE
- E que as leis descritas no artigo são uma solução perfeita


Espero que apreciem a leitura seguindo o link para o Google Docs

Abraços a todos

Serpa

English Article Highlights::

Overselling or overcomplicating compliance and ethics is not needed
Compliance related codes can, and must, be simple to understand
The simpler a conduct-related code is, the better it works
It’s possible to write codes valid for all possible situations
The laws devised here are a flawless solution

janeiro 01, 2012

As Três Leis da Robótica, as Empresas e o Amor



O grande mestre da ficção científica, e praticamente o criador da ficção científica moderna, Isaac Asimov, um nobre colega de Mensa, cunhou as três leis da robótica, as quais reproduzo a seguir**:
  • 1ª lei: Um robô não pode ferir um ser humano ou, por omissão, permitir que um ser humano sofra algum mal.
  • 2ª lei: Um robô deve obedecer as ordens que lhe sejam dadas por seres humanos, exceto nos casos em que tais ordens contrariem a Primeira Lei.
  • 3ª lei: Um robô deve proteger sua própria existência desde que tal proteção não entre em conflito com a Primeira ou a Segunda Lei.
E daí? Você me pergunta. Respondo então: Daí que temos um dos melhores exemplos de que com simplicidade pode-se chegar ao controle absoluto de assuntos de extrema complexidade. A simplicidade que falta no mundo de hoje, a beleza do simples que vem sendo buscado por todos os ramos do conhecimento humano. Um bom exemplo dessa busca é o uso de "enxames" de robôs simples, com cérebros simples que simulam o comportamento de insetos sociais, que conseguem, por meio da colaboração, atingir resultados complexos.

E, nesse espírito, podemos ver que uma das aplicações potenciais da simplicidade das três leis e a substituição de volumes gigantescos de políticas, normas e procedimentos por "três leis do funcionário", que seriam as seguintes:
  • 1ª lei: Um Funcionário não pode ferir a Empresa ou, por omissão, permitir que a Empresa sofra algum mal.
  • 2ª lei: Um Funcionário deve obedecer as ordens que lhe sejam dadas pela Empresa (seus representantes), exceto nos casos em que tais ordens contrariem a Primeira Lei.
  • 3ª lei: Um Funcionário deve proteger sua própria existência (emprego) desde que tal proteção não entre em conflito com a Primeira ou a Segunda Lei.
Reflita na simplicidade do exposto acima e busque uma situação em que as três leis do funcionário não serviriam para substituir uma política corporativa.

E não paremos por aí, apliquemos as mesmas leis ao assunto mais complexo que existe para os seres humanos .... o Amor.

Veja como ficaria:
  • 1ª lei: Um apaixonado não pode ferir a pessoa amada ou, por omissão, permitir que a pessoa amada sofra algum mal.
  • 2ª lei: Um apaixonado deve obedecer as ordens que lhe sejam dadas pela pessoa amada (ou satisfazer-lhe os desejos), exceto nos casos em que tais ordens (ou desejos) contrariem a Primeira Lei.
  • 3ª lei: Um apaixonado deve proteger seus próprios sentimentos desde que tal proteção não entre em conflito com a Primeira ou a Segunda Lei.
Claro que há um descompasso aqui na terceira lei, que coloca os sentimentos do outro num nível superior aos seus, mas quem sou eu para querer simplificar o amor ........


* Se você assisitu a "Eu, Robô" então você conhece o trabalho de Isaac Asimov.
** No original em inglês: 
  • 1st law: A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  • 2nd law: A robot must obey any orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  • 3rd law: A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.