A friend and colleague is travelling to India for work. He will be meeting with some off-shore staff in Calcutta, and will be taking a day from work to sightsee – after all, it’s a long flight and a rare opportunity to travel overseas for business.
India is one of the few countries east of Greece (or very far west of San Francisco – depending on one’s perspective) to which I have a curiosity for visiting. There’s not only the gorgeous mythological draw of exotic lands far from here, but the very practical interest to be in the place where the concept of zero as a number was born. Imagine a number system without zero – it doesn’t make any sense to us in this 21st century. Yet until the 9th century, no such idea existed except as a confusing void.
I’d like to visit a place where some cool ideas arose – and not just any sort of idea but one which is highly useful in the languages from which software is constructed.