I am in the airport in Mumbai, the city formerly known as Bombay, en route from Bangalore to London. India is a vast country, about a third the size of the continental United States, and home to over 1,100,000,000 (four times the population of the U.S., and second only to China). My experiences these past few days in Bangalore are thus hardly representative of the country as a whole, which I guess means that I need to come back to get the chance to see other cities.
Bangalore was the center of colonial rule in South India during the British Raj (reign) until 1947. Nowadays Bangalore is India’s third largest city, home to over 6,000,000, and boasts the highest per capita income of any city in India. Bangalore has been called the Silicon Valley of India because of the large number of IT companies based there.
A trip to Bangalore is a rather surreal experience, almost like walking on to a movie set. The sounds, smells (some pleasant, others not, and none familiar), the contrast of high tech alongside abject poverty, cows on the side of the streets, brightly colored clothing, impromptu shanty villages, auto rickshaws (think motorcycle meets rickshaw), the constant stares earned by being so obvious a visitor, haggling with street peddlers, motorcycles carrying four or more (often with children perched on the handlebars) darting in and out of traffic, the smell and smoke of incense, the incessant sounding of horns as people and vehicles cut in and out of each other on hectic roads, familiar US brands but all with an Indian twist … it’s a truly amazing experience.
Adobe has an office in Bangalore (it is actually the former Macromedia India office, the other Adobe office is in Noida, way up North at the opposite end of the country) which is home to part of the ColdFusion team. A group of us (Damon Cooper, Tom Jordahl, Dean Harmon, and myself) came over to spend time with the local CF team members as part of our Scorpio planning, and a considerable amount of time was spent brainstorming, reviewing specs, analyzing feature ideas, and the like. The local CF engineers are a bright and capable bunch, and Scorpio will be better with their involvement. And no, I can’t share specifics yet, but several of the Bangalore engineers will be at MAX this year presenting the features and technologies that they are working on.
And with that, I have to run and catch my flight (and hopefully a few hours of sleep). Next stop, London!