Testing

Saturday, December 31, 2011

When High Priority ≠ First Thing to Do

Like a rational mind, I had my plans in order of priority for this ongoing vacation. Things which I thought of high-priority were put on top and things with medium put on bottom. Sounds perfect, right? Well, I don't know about you but I have discovered that vacations are not same as regular days. Vacations are time when if you pick up boring stuff, you could go on and on w/o coming to any conclusion until it becomes dire need. It needs lot of discipline to do boring stuff early in time and no pressure. I have yet to reach that level but for now let's consider I am normal normal.

I started reading a subject (Let's call it S-2) which I like, in the beginning of the holidays and I thought, wow, I am actually utilizing my vacation. I was able to utilize around 50% of the time. One day my roommate suggested that I should rather focus on subject S-1, considering that is higher priority than subject, S-2. That put me into thinking and I started loosing time. I thought that my roomie has a point and I should indeed do S-1 before S-2 at the start of vacation. But there is a caveat. None of them have deadline before start of college so I could play around the schedule and still reach in time. (S-1 is connected with college course while S-2 is an independent study )

I took his advise, moved S-1 on top and kept S-2 away. S-1 didn't had great start and I was fine with it. Slowly I was loosing interest in S-1 and eventually I was dragging myself, losing days. Simple reason, I don't enjoy S-1 as much as S-2 but to take up S-2 over S-1 was tough. You see, I invested time in S-1 and couldn't go back to S-2 just because I like it. But, today I should say, during vacation its better to start with things we like to do than things we don't enjoy. That way we would not waste time on some mundane thoughts of priority as it hardly matters when in vacation. I have decided to record what I have learned & explored in S-1, keep it handy so that when I resume it after finishing S-2, I will have a background and not clear puzzled head.

So, after all this, the plan of action is, I am going to spend coming two days preparing myself for upcoming conference in computational geometry and after I am done, start with S-2, finish that up and then take up S-1, since I will be pushed not by interest but by deadline to finish S-1. As always, don't know if this is going to work but let's try it out and I will come back with how it went.

Giving an example of a sailor who doesn't have modern compass, its only with time he will know where did he go wrong and the sooner he change his direction, the better are chances he will not be laughed at through generations for his foolishness.

What do you think could have helped me realize that before or how do you think I should have drawn my initial plan? Do let me know.

Take Care.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Happy Holidays with Video Podcast.

video

Do let me know if you liked it. Not sure how it came out as I can see the image blurred :P.

Bbye.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Waiting for Holy Onsite Opportunity for Years.

If you don't understand what the title means, possibly you wont understand what I am going to speak below, but if you wish, read on.

ONSITE, chance to work on client position which is usually US, UK or other developed countries, is portrayed as the coveted Champions Cup which each IT Professional needs to win. For many first timers, the lure is of visiting these so-called developed nations where the general perception is, that robots will be seen flying in sky and everyone is super happy as shown on Hollywood movies and it is easy to hook up with the opposite sex and then a small interest in some corner of the heart is to save some money(1$=50INR). From 2nd timer and above, it is the lure of money.

For both 1st & 2nd timer their bosses use this lure of ONSITE as golden pot which he or she is promised of either in the interview process or after slogging in job for months. Interestingly the distance between the gold pot never seems to increase. It is intelligently placed either the same distance or brought in close proximity to raise goosebumps and Managers will pronounce "You were too close this time, never mind keep trying".

You might observe that some of your friends are indeed getting the gold pot which bolster your confidence in the words of your manager and you keep going round and round and round in some infinite loop until one day you are awaken by a slap on your face. The figure could be rejections in marriage proposal due to low salary, your wife (lucky you.), your mirror reflections when you toothbrush sitting on toilet seat and in no hurry. For many, the realization is painful because it has costed them more Time than the goodness the ONSITE would have brought. As a result of which the employee is disgruntled, will get into arguments with boss and management and finally leave the company.

I am not going to talk about how much he is missed and managers eye opening experience but from the perspective of candidate. Now, coming back to our protagonist, he fails to understand many things like how not every manager is your father like and why he don't give damn to your career progress but is just interested in his/her own which means he would like to go Onsite before he gives you the opportunity (for reason read above). Second, the novice fails to realize that if the manager is dilly dallying ONSITE, then probably he is not worth the company's money which should actually ring a loud speaker to his ears that his skill knife has gone blunt and needs sharpening. He need to seriously look towards taking more challenging projects and move on with life. Getting too comfortable in one chair is understandable but even the chair is tired of your butt marks and wish to get some change. Take chance at least once in Life and you won't regret your cowardly self.

To me, Life is not "A Risk, A Success" but "Series of Risk, Series of Success".

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Yatri (Traveller)

मंजिलें तोह मिल ही जाएँगी, भटक कर ही सही
गुमराह तो वोह है जो घर से निकले ही नहीं
-   Shivani Raina Facebook Feed.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

From Homeless to Harvard

I am just moved by this movie called From Homeless to Harvard. It talks about Liz Murray, child to drug addicted parents and homeless but determined. She changed her life from nothing to something.




It is just big dream and she is perfect example of "Nothing is Impossible if you work Hard".

A friend in need is a friend indeed.

For past few days I was going downhill with my studies. Not focusing right. Loosing the big goal. All this because I didn't do right in one mid-term paper. Before that, I was all charged up ready to take on the world but later that incident, things changed. I started sleeping late, under utilizing my time and was thinking of easy aims and finding fault with US education system(Will talk about it in detail sometime later).

I spoke to him few minutes ago and explained him my situation. He said, If subject XYZ is causing all the pain and making you loose focus, let it go to waste. Don't let one subject ruin your aspiration and life. He gave eg. of a painter (He himself is a wonderful cartoonist), and said, "In Painting, if you are painting one with utmost care but happen to make one mistake, it ruin your all hard work and many a times people just give up because of this failure. Let this not happen to you. You should not get discouraged with one subject but you should keep working towards other subjects and do well in them". He said, if I could cross the threshold and get admission to MIT/Harvard/Stanford for my PhD., my life will become wonderful and worthwhile. Also, I should not entertain the thoughts of "Should I really do PhD?" but do all my preparation as though I really want to be at such elite university for my PhD and then I will see the difference of attitude.

America could be a lonely place for someone who comes from country like India where there are social linkages even between neighbors and you could just go to them and talk without being bothered of invading personal space. There are times I miss such wonderful friends who would just know what I need when I am down. As said, I have some true friends indeed.

Good Night.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Left high paying MNC Job for Civil Service Exam Preparation

A friend of mine recently left high paying job in an MNC with annual salary more than INR 10 Lakh (approx USD 25K), which is quite high as per Indian Standard to pursue his goal of serving society by appearing in India's one of most tough civil services exam. He has taken a big leap of faith and confidence. I know his journey is not going to be easy but I wish him good luck in all he does. Over the chat I asked how he feels about his decision and he says "
i m happy dude, no regrets"

He inspires me. He tell me what it means to follow your heart. He gives me strength to follow mine. I promised him that I will make him proud one day too by accomplishing something worthwhile in life. Remember, I am still toiling with the Idea of PhD/Startup after MS. I need to make a good choice for myself and do something worthwhile.

To have such friends who gives you strength to aim high is a blessing and I am few blessed ones. My best wishes to my dear friend and pray all his tough times don't last long and his effort pays off well.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Unstoppable

If your dog doesn't get the bone you are hanging high enough for him to get, chances are he will loose interest and stray away. Contrary to this, if a man is faced with a similar challenge, he can innovate/improve upon his strategy and try a little more long. .....Hmm..I just lost my train of thoughts after the guy in the lab started howling. I will still go ahead and post it as I think I still have a point.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fire : It can be Controlled.

I got to share with you all some wonderful research done by one of my friend and his research group at UMASS Lowell titled "Non-Toxic Flame Retardants". It has to do with inventing new coating substance which retards the spread of fire and even prevent burning. US Army has shown keen interest to this project. The coating is made using organic waste. I am excited about his research and may even get you more details after talking to him but at the moment I would urge you all to go to the site and post comments/feedback and spread the word. It is crucial that large number of people know about it to create momentum for its fruition.

Thank You.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Connecting the future dots

Remember me talking about connecting dots in general and connecting the future dots and how sometimes I have intuition about what's going to happen next by looking at what's happening today. Well I just had a moment yesterday which I would like to share.

For past one year, I am struggling with a questions, "Should I pursue PhD and become Professor after MS or should I start a business after MS?". I am exploring each of these two options by talking with Professors, reading about latest research, and by participating in forthcoming Boston Startup Weekend etc. Yesterday I just happen to attend a technical colloquium at my Computer Science Department on topic based on Forensic analysis of P2P system for Child Pornography. It was interesting topic and the speaker Swagatika Prusty presented it well and handled the questions clearly. I liked it. I learned something new. After the presentation, the usual practice of few audiences forming a circle around the speaker and participating in the discussion happened and I joined the league. There were random topics mostly concentrated around what was presented and then we moved on to career. One from the audience was a Professor from my department and asked the speaker (which if you have noticed is only a second year Master's student at UMASS Amherst) whether she would like to pursue PhD? To which she responded that she is yet not decided but would prefer to be a doctorate student only to be interrupted by the Professor "unless you land a fat paying job" to everyone's humor. Then he spoke about his life, how he was in Israeli army at young age, then went on to start a business where he made good money and told his mother that he doesn't see why he should attend college considering he is already earning quite well. To which her mother responded "You are stupid" which mentally tormented him and he joined college obtaining his bachelors degree and realized that "it is so much fun" and enrolled for Masters degree which again he realized "This is so much fun" and rest all is history.

Now, the story part is over. Next phase that went into my head is, why is the professor speaking about his career decisions, why did I meet another student who is in dilemma of doing PhD or not, why am I here amongst all the infinite possibility and how come each of these things are happening when I am suppose to go for a startup event on coming weekend. Well, Steve Jobs said you can connect the dots by only looking backward and he is absolutely right because connecting the future dots is only probabilistic in nature. Getting obsessed about connecting future dots can make someone dogmatic but I would recommend that he/she should just take it as some form of information and continue doing their daily routines and when the final day of making a choice comes, use these pointers along with regular pros & cons rationality. Making future look like the way you want will disturb the natural order making the future connections only fraud.

Do share your story if you happen to experience the same.

Have a wonderful future
Amit

P.S. I feel so relaxed after writing this topic because I was waiting for a long time for an event to happen naturally where I can make future connections and talk to my readers about it.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

How to be smart.

"It's not that I'm so smart , it's just that I stay with problems longer." Albert Einstein (1879-1955)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Steve Jobs , The Entrepreneur.

At this moment, I have a mixed feeling because I am extremely sad for demise of Steve Jobs. He has taught me valuable lessons of life through his Stanford Commencement Speech.


He was a great entrepreneur, someone whom I listened live or heard in my life span. He will be remembered by millions.

The second feeling I have today is of accomplishment. I am able to execute a program for which I have been working for more than 1 month as part of my college assignment in Operating System Graduate Course at UMASS Lowell. The Professor has been kind enough to give me flexibility and not penalize me heavily for delay of 2 weeks which I have already done. I made lot of mistakes, I asked for help at places I couldn't find a way out but I kept trying just to make sure I learn in the honest way.

I give credit to my today's success to Steve Jobs  for lessons in perseverance.

Thank You Steve. May you rest in peace.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Randomness

Right now, I have an assignment to choose 1 out of first 15 sections in the book of "The Society of Mind" by Marvin Minsky and write a one page summary of it as homework assignment for Artificial Intelligence Course in my graduate studies.

Since it was not an easy choice where all parts are good topics, I decided to generate a random number using RANDOM.org website between 1 to 15. It may sound lot of unnecessary work for just a number but if you might have faced or heard that some of the best things happens by chance and I thought that if I choose a random chapter rather than going by my bias, it will give me an opportunity to explore something new and who knows it might hold my attention for entire life. 

The stage is set.



Get Set Go.


So my random number is 11 and so it is. The section name is "The Shape of Space". Wow, I surely wouldn't have picked this one thinking "What has space got to do with Artificial Intelligence?". Let's see how it works out. Don't let too much intelligence ruin the chance of discovering something new by loosening yourself and giving randomness a chance.

Have  Nice Weekend.
Cheers.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Quote Unquote

A quote from my senior colleague while at Fidelity Investment
"Fire is fire.. there is no small or big in it. As long as it is alive, when the conditions are ripe, it'd burn down even a great forest"

Vasu Palaniandi

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Why MS?

1. To make the better use of my life than being in IT.
2. To contribute to society in my capacity.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

She is not unknown to me anymore

Things have changed tonight. Tonight I no more was watching her from far and thinking what is it she made of and what does she think about me. We danced together, romanced and spoke few words. The moments of togetherness calmed my eagerness to know her for years together. Painfully we parted but I know it was for good.

Monday, August 29, 2011

I love you Mac

Its been just few days(Got on 8/26, today is 08/29) since I got my first apple product Apple MacBook Pro and I am already loving it. Couple of things makes it amazingly wonderful.

1. Mac OS is a Linux Flavor which makes it virus free and fast. I always wanted to move out of Windows due to its pricing and too much control over user.

2. MacBook Pro is no nonsense system. It doesnt even have unnecessary stickers of Intel Processor/Graphics Card/Apple either.

3. There is a unknown territory (Mac Commands Vs. Windows) and requires few days of learning but after that it is smooth ride. Online reference will help you get started quickly.

4. People who worry about softwares which comes only with Windows installer, look harder for Mac and you should be able to find one. Between MS Office is available for Mac OS too or you can choose OpenOffice to do your Word/Excel/Visio task at zero cost.

5. You dont have to shut down your system completely. Just close the lid and it goes into sleep mode which saves your battery more than Windows sleep. It is safe till now.

6. The power adapter is bidirectional which helps in accommodating to any situation and not struggle with it.

7. Display is very good. Processor is fast and dude you dont have to worry about unnecessary software notifications. Mac OS takes care for you that.

The list is good enough for anyone to be convinced. I just trusted one of my close friend's advise.

Take Care
Amit

Tim Cook's Speech

Thursday, August 18, 2011

US F1 VISA Interview at Chennai Consulate

"I have my US Visa interview today at 7:30 am. Its midnight and am eagerly waiting. Though I am not much worried but normal anxiety do exist. God, help me as you always did to pass this hurdle too. Gn"

After years of preparation for my Masters studies and having secured admission and done with running around for Bank Loan, it was Visa that was left in the end. You may be going to Standford after all the pain but if the Visa Officer see that you are not right fit, he can hold you down and your aspiration by a simple "NO". Hence, unless you are through VISA, it is still like a sword hanging around your neck. It means a lot specially to the ones who are genuine seeker than to those who are looking it as an opportunity to migrate to USA.

My visa was scheduled for 27th June at 7:30 am in Chennai. I reached the office at around 6 a.m. since I was traveling from Bangalore and reached Chennai early morning at 5. I waited for my turn when I could see other aspirants joining in with their files and some along with their parents. It was getting hotter and I could wish I leave asap back to Bangalore.

The security guard signaled for 7:30 a.m batch and I moved along with others. To my surprise I was not allowed to submit my bag because it had wheels in it. I was furious and got further anxious when I couldn't find any other place to secure my bag. Well, I must say "You gotta money in your pocket, you got a way out of trouble". Looks like someone sensed my trouble and offered me a place to secure my bag though he charged me 10 times of what get charged officially. I was in need and with no choice. I concurred.

After taking my token for VISA Interview and security checkups I waited for a while. Since I was early bird, I was still kept waiting since the random number calling still didn't see me. I thought, someone behind the monitor is playing with those numbers and making sure I don't come soon. Anyways, my turn came as a big relief and I swiftly moved to the queue where I was supposed to be interviewed.


I was asked general questions which I answered well and confidently. I could see I was going good and when the final words "Your Visa is approved" came, my hearts knew no bounds. I was elated. Took hold of my documents and marched quickly out of the office lest the VO changes his mind and call me back.

I could now connect the dots of the past where I was preparing for GRE, leaving my job and travel with family. Thank you Steve Jobs for this wonderful lesson.


Cheers,
Amit

P.S. For those keen on knowing what questions I was asked, I would say you may look into popular sites like Edulix etc for probable questions asked.

For those who want to know how to prepare for VI, I have got few suggestions.
1. Get your documents straight. I saw two candidates with missing documents and getting their VISA rejected. Though they tried hard to find in the folder they were carrying but hard luck.
2. Be Honest. Somewhere I read, only if you are honest can you be confident. Being Confident is key to clearing the interview. If you are not, you are unlikely to get through.
3. Be Calm and positive throughout.

I am Android

I am new member of Android family.  Someone welcome me or I will do so myself.

Monday, August 15, 2011

What is Indianism?

Indianness is not about the country you are born in, or the country you migrate to, it's about your identity and emphasis towards discipline, hard-work, honesty and continuous learning. The values that hold true towards tolerance, and focus on intellectual and spiritual growth. It's your ability to be a global citizen embracing diversity, and believing in peace without prejudices of language, color or skills and abilities. 
Harsha G Goolya

Its time I write about my first USA trip

10/08/2011

I am sitting outside Fox Hall building, walking around UML Campus. I must say, its beautiful but due to summer break its a lonely place. I look around and I feel that I have made right choice. This place gives me one more opportunity to make a great life and nothing stops me. The college has not started yet but I hope it will be equally satisfying experience.


I must say USofA is not as fancy as I thought it to be sitting in India. People over here are same as people at other places with habits & problems. Not every passerby greets you, there are dirty homes, people do misuse benefits etc. But on the other hand, people are polite and cars stops for pedestrians. Everyone is on car. I thought I will be amazed by the various car models and housing but the rapid economic growth in India has equally matched with what USofA has in their streets and their homes.

Oh yes, there is one great news. There is just no air pollution & weather in summer is moderate. There were times I laughed at myself for letting go the easy life I had as an IT professional in Bangalore and choosing this new life of student where I am struggling to find a house, a phone, food to eat & jobless. I know this is just initial hiccups which one experiences due to country and cultural change. Lot of things work opposite here but I will surely adapt. This is one golden opportunity (sun is shinning very bright at the moment) & I will make the best out of it. God help me remain focused & calm.

P.S. Just wanted to add, TV is surely an idiot box here. People talk about cat rescue (I know they have started this in India too), material buying & loads of nonsense go around television. I feel it is important to be away from TV and focus on work & actual social participation. USofA has culture of Capitalism and it promotes more buying. People buy more than what they need. For eg. If I need one towel, there will be an offer where a set of four will be a more reasonable choice than just one. Anyways, I accept this country as it is as each one is different. There are loopholes in my understanding which I am sure will get filled in the days to come where I will learn more and I will come back with updated views.

Monday, August 8, 2011

This looks so right

Today I updated my profile in Linkedin as my new Title is "Graduate Student, Computer Science Department at UMass Lowell" and the first thing I felt about this new chapter of my life is"This looks so right". I was waiting for this for long and surely time has its own sweetness. I felt, "I am at the right place and I need to make the best of it". God give me strength.

Thanks to all my family and my friends who stood by me in difficult times and I share my future success with them.

Take Care all.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

I got the puzzle of time flying at home.

Haven't you told yourself, "Oh, how come its already 6 pm., some time back it was just 1". You know what, I got some clue :D :D

I have been home these days for past 2.5 months I guess, and when I look back, I say "Holy shit, it looks as if I came just yesterday." Time flies because we mostly end up catching on sleep & leisure around and not busy accomplishing something to measure time. Lot of my time just goes around doing the daily chores, preparing for VISA and talking with mum.

I got my VISA interview coming in a weeks time and I am still confused with what's going to happen in that fraction of time I am going to spend with Visa Officer. Though I got all my documents straight but I cant fully underestimate the tricky man up and his power change things in blink of an eye hence I am trying my best to prepare and rehearse my answers at visa interview for probable questions thinking it might help me not stammer and be concise when required. I seriously wish, it work out in my favor because I together with my dad has been toiling for past 2 months getting loan sanctioned, health report prepared and lot of running for many other things. I would like to specially thank my dad at this moment for helping me out in getting dozens of documents at the first call. It fills my heart with gratitude when I remember the moments when each time he has to take steps to get on the bank building and how he used to walk slowly by holding the railings on side. He surely took lot of pain and I will be thankful to him all my life.

How can I forget my mom. What makes my time at home so wonderful is, knowing I have someone who loves me dearly and someone I need to take care of. She laughs, frown, prod and prepare the best food she can just to make her family a healthy one. Today while watching the movie " The Blind Side", I suddenly remembered of her and thought, "Man, she is not going to be around all time. Spend as much time as you can & capture each wonderful moment you can. I am sure you going to miss her badly one day". I am sure all the mums of the world are amazing women and I bow to each one who toil everyday for the well being for their family and expecting very less in return. Interestingly with my mom, after every meal she prepares she would ask, "Is it tasting real good?", and all of us (my dad, brother and myself), would sing in one tone "Sure it is". This silly act of ours used to make her smile and feel a sense of accomplishment. What a woman.

Sometime, I ponder over my usage of time and how myself who used to keep himself all busy is just spending time doing nothing. Ah, it is envious I know. I think, it is one of its kind of vacation, where I decided to spend time with family before I travel very far from home.

Wish me luck for my interview and that I eventually embark upon my long dream of pursing Masters degree.

Wish you a Happy Day.

Cheers to all parents !!
Amit


Sunday, June 5, 2011

So what if we have waitlisted tickets.

The atmosphere at home is of humor, leg-pulling, critical and have-faith-in-god type. It is real fun to see it happening to us and my dad (who otherwise would have frowned), is smiling too.

The event at home is, we are prepared to embark on our annual long distance trip and this time its to Jaipur, Amritsar & Dharamsala. Well, the tickets for this trip has been carefully planned and booked 2 months in advance only to discover yesterday that our first journey railway from Dhanbad to Jaipur is still waitlisted and has not yet buzzed even by one while others are confirmed. You may call us fool of not noticing it earlier but home has been a busy place in the past one month with visits from relatives and all of us busy entertaining them. I guess the ignorance of our waitslisted ticket has got to do with 2,3,4,5 waiting we got and the high chances we thought it will be approved resulted in non-registration of "Waitlist" in our memory and we were too happy to notice nitty gritty details of ticket later.

Now the situation is, we have got another class of tickets called "Tatkal" in waitlisted but with higher probability of getting confirmed. My brother is heading for Kolkata to make sure he start negotiating with TC (Ticket Checker), from the starting point of Train incase they dont get automatically confirmed.

I guess, I have already confused you with my situation but its not your fault. That's the nature of it and we are totally standing as one family with one-opinion to go about it and surely more than normal faith in God's magic :).

Anyways, we have got all our luggage ready, foods, camera and magazines ready and will wait for the signs of confirmation of tickets and march towards railway station with aura of victory and smiles ear to ear.

Isn't it Fun :D.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Co-Founder Problem

Here's an imp read for issues related to co-founders. It is a message block from Google Groups.

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/headstart-network/ya62uwsCq3c

More about it some other time.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Day 1 @ Home

9th April 2011

Starting today I have begun my 4 months of home-stay before leaving for my studies. Today was the first day and it went mostly in getting things sorted, arranging my stuff and calling my sisters/friends.

Also, what special happened today was when I heard my mother saying "कितने टाइम के बाद कोई मुझे माँ बुला रहा है और घर में चल पहल है " (After a long time someone is calling me Mom and there is liveliness at home). It was emotional moment as I know I am returning home after 10 years though I have come in between many a times but never more than a week or 10 days but now it is for 4 months. It made me realize that how my mother too earns for the closeness of her child and how dear are we to her.

Interestingly this time, I don't see the rush for me to go and meet relatives, perform chores as it used to be earlier and it is solely because I am going to stay real long.

I also realize that I have a critical goal to achieve and without loosing my mind over random things, it needs to be planned and executed well. Again its a faith which is driving me and am sure it will turn out well.


Enjoy
Amit

P.S. As a writer, I would love to hear from my readers of my blog as what they think about my subjects of writeup and if they would like to see some change in it. It will help me become better. Thank You.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Last few days in Bangalore

Having done with my job on 31st March, I had one week at my disposal before boarding my Train to Howrah on 7th April 2011. This one week has been deliberately chosen to give me enough time to wrap up my official work and meet my friends one last time before leaving Bangalore. I know I won't be meeting them again even if I do have plan to come back for a day or two. I will miss some of the people and the place in particular.

Bangalore, I consider as the best place for professionals in India. It is cosmopoliton & people are very accomodative and kind compared to other cities where I had trouble of being outsider or not knowing the local language. Bangalore's "Adjust Maadi" lingo makes all work easy. Also, an above average Public Transport system with newly incorporated AC Volvo buses makes it comfortable to ride distances. Being the
"Silicon Valley" of India, it is well detailed on web and you can get easy home delivery of anything . Though autorickshaws are pain sometimes but I happen to meet an honest one once and I took his number and called him eveytime I needed auto service to which he used to oblige kindly. Bangalore also has lot of nightclubs, concept restro & weekend places which helps maintain work-life balance.

So, here what I have been doing around in past few days.

Day 1 :-Friday
Met Marsha for breakfast at Daddy's Deli (A Parsian Cafe, recommended), where we chatted for long discussing topics ranging from office ass lickers, marriage, friends to opening a new business and becoming Professor. She has been very kind to get me some gifts like Mug for being Learning Catalyst and a folder which is coming in good use to me these days to carry my documents around. Thank You Marsha. I will always miss you.

Then went to my investment advisor who asked me to wait for few days before redeeming my NAV's.
Then went to Blossom Bookstore at Brigade Road where I managed to find a book on Operating Sytstem which I plan to read during my vacation time. Finding a book in an unorganized store is hell of a task.

Day 2:-Saturday
The day started with my visit to my counselor at Yashna Trust whose service I am availing for preparing me to appy to US universities. Let me be frank, if I wouldnt have their support, I doubted I would have made it this time. Very professional and years of experience. Fees is not very costly and genuine. It is affliated with USIEF. It was Visa Counselling day and I must say going for that session helped me avoid mistakes.

Later I left for Jayanagar where there was a friends meet planned. We had lunch in a restraurant but since it was the day for Final Match for Cricket World Cup so we didnt talk much over table but glued to the TV screen and following the match. Nothing helped getting us to talk. At times I was feeling little frustrated thinking its my last day and my friends give cricket more preferance over me :).

Then I left for my Mother's sister house closeby where I watched the rest of Cricket Match and celebrated India's Victory. For the first time I was howling on the streets and I didnt feel embarassed because there were other hundreds doing the same. Next morning I left for my temp stay at Marathalli.

Day 3:- I was tired and coming back home I rested for some more time and then in the evening went to meet Raghav at Garuda Mall. He was my teammate in my project for more than 1.5 yrs and I value our close bonding more as friends than colleague. I was looking for a quiet place for us to talk but it was wrong thing to wish in a shopping mall. We went to a restro in 4th floor in the mall which was little pricy. I dont mind it and I think it was worth the choice as we spent ample time talking about lot of things and then Raghav gave me an open choice to select a gift for myself on his behalf. It was tempting and  I told him that I will encash this wish later which he refused laughingly and I chose an informal Kurta for muyself. Later we parted and left for home.

Day 4: This was very hectic day I must say. It started with meeting Kishlay (my high school friend) at "The Egg Factory" (St Marks Road, recommended), were you get dishes of egg only. We enjoyed our time together, remembered some old times and talked a bit on future planning. The place was quiet and the food was good lunch. I later took Kishlay for Bangalore Darshan at M G Road and had ice-cream at Lakeview Cafe. I had wondeful time.

Later, I went to Forum mall where Manisha, Shalinee & Amrita were waiting for me. They are my school friends. Since I just came back from heavy lunch I had Lassi. We chatted for long and again remembered some old memories. Also, the news of marriage for all the three girls was broken to me. It is a different feeling I guess when you see your friends getting married. I wished them good wishes for the marraige life.

At the end of this meet, started third with Neha (Originally my friend's girlfriend). She was little dissapointed about her low score in GMAT, so we talked about how to improve it next time then about my friend on his new posting in Pune and at times about my career goals. Later we went to Bayleaf for dinner. We had great time and then we wished each other and left for homes.

Day 5:-
Day 5, started with some lethargy. I woke up late but I had VISA fee to be payed. Since I had heavy food, last night I forgo my breakfast and lunch for 2 glass of sugarcane juice. Went to Sarjapur Office of HDFC, paid my fees and then marched towards ITPL to meet Prabha and give my gift to her as token of Thank You for giving me recommendations for my school application which worked out.

Came back home but later realized that I have few items remaining in my to-do-list. Went to M G Road to get VISA photoshoot and then to a Pizzahut for my Pizza dinner. Tired and concerend if I will get bus back to room, I left Pizzahut as soon as I finished it and fortunately got into the bus which brought me directly to home.

Day 6 :-
It is tomorrow and I have some plans to be executed. It is also my last day where after that I am boarding my train. I doubt if I will be able to write about this day so I will publish it now in its present form and when ever I get time I will update this.

As said, I love Bangalore and being a Bangalorean.

Friday, April 1, 2011

My Last Day at Job

My farewell mail on second last day at Job on 30st March 2011. I will remember it my whole life.

Subject : Thank You & Farewell.

Hello,

Only an end can assure a new beginning. My stint with Fidelity is coming to an end tomorrow to embark upon a new journey of pursuing MS in Computer Science. I joined here as college fresher and has come a long way which wouldn't have been possible without your support. You have played key role in grooming me as a professional.  I will fondly remember being associalted with Fun@Work team at OSG, Fidelity Cycling Group, Voice of Fidelity and Control-M trainer. These were key to my soft-skill developments. Thank You for giving me the opportunity and your guidance.

I would like to take this opportunity to remain in touch with you and request you to drop me your preferred email ID or connect via social networks mentioned below. If I can be of any help, feel free to contact.

Thank You & Wish me Luck,

Regards,
Amit Choudhary
amit_krchoudhary@yahoo.com / mr.amitkc@gmail.com
LinkedinID

Entreprenurship is an Art Not a Job

Going through my tweets, I stumbled upon this article link (Click Here) by Steve Blank. It talks about how Entreprenurs are Writers and may not be Actors.

Though I dont have any first hand experience of starting a company but I did spend somedays in building a business model and planning. I can think of new ideas, ever ready to puruse new challenges and dont care what will be tomorrow. But at the sametime I have realized that I am sloppy with execution and it left me with low opnion about myself but as Steve's says, you can be an Writers but not actors, so I take my shortcoming with pinch of possibility.

One of the initial comment that caught my attention and I felt is coming from a Horses Mouth (James Harradence) is

Steve:
I agree wholeheartedly with your thought that entrepreneurship is an art. However, it can also be a discipline.
Many great artists are neither crazy nor chaotic nor addicted to the unknown. They accept the potential of failure and realize that creating newness (a sculpture or a new category of product) will require great effort and great patience.
They are also aware of the micro and macro processes at work. Not a highly detailed, granular process, but a big blocks of quantum progress process. They understand and believe, more than most people that:
1) Failure = a chance to learn (10x the learnings from success)
2) The failure & learning must stop for success to occur.
Great artists and entrepreneurs share the ability to see what should be and, either immediately or over time, being right.
Early on, they make practical mistakes and then they gain the tools to consistently make their vision reality (‘Hi, my name is Steve Jobs.’).
The chaotic ones are just immature: either as people or in their craft.
The crazy ones (and I have worked with more than one) leave more potential on the table (as a group) than they capture: avoid them is my advice.
James

Take Care & Enjoy!

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The "D" day has arrived. Pre-Lessons learnt(don't want to get biased with results)

Today is the big day for my so called "Task", and I am keeping my temper at ease even though I feel like kicking my own butt for things that could have been done better. The reason for putting up this article is to analyze my experience with this task objectively and and not after its execution where the chances of getting biased with the result will be high.

1. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
On numerous instances I have heard this parable but failed to understand. My present situation force me to contemplate upon what could have been done better and I am sure to say that the adage holds true/right all time. Proper planning with good brainstorming looks like is the essence of success or way to avoid not superr failure and despair. It is painful to make a plan and more harder to follow it but I guess it is worth the effort and relief from heart burn later.

2. One Size does not fit all.
If a particular plan has worked for one, it may not work for me. Make an individual plan considering one own strength and weakness.

3. Assumptions Kill.
Moving with too much of assumption with air of wise man can overlook a great potential risk.

4. Good Sleep is necessary to achieve good results.

My First Resignation

Today I am about to send my first resignation. Never before the "Send" button in outlook has been more dreaded to push. But I am at ease and confident that this end will start a new beginning.

Thank you Lord for your constant support and my near family, friends & others to support my dream all through. It wouldn't have been possible with you.

God, I strongly believe that the future has something more beautiful and satisfying stored in for me. Keep your grace as always and help me with confidence to meet future challenges.

Thank You all once again.

Regards
Amit

When in Confusion. Seek Faith.

I have tried many a times to understand the implications what my decision could make or better to say, find out what will be the exact outcomes of those.

I don't feel ashamed to admit, I was foolish. Yes, I was. How can life's events be predicted when there are infinite possibilities attached to it. For eg, if you divide infinite by zillion, it still remain infinite. Just a bad illustration to show, how even if we have some countable possible outcomes, it can never map possibilities to a finite number.


But one of the thing I have started trusting is my Gut-Feeling or in better words, understanding the series of events. It is interesting to see how a series of events when observed can give a much better idea of what could possibly be the future.These are subtle events that whiz pass very quietly. Getting obsessed about it can make you superstitious but I don't consider being superstition as bad if there is a fair chances of positive outcome. In that case, it will be more appropriately called as being analytical.

I got into this thinking mode  by looking at series of events which happened recently in my life. It is hard to convince someone else with my view on this as it is subjective in nature. There's also a possibility that we connect the past events on the basis of result we achieve and high probability of getting biased.

 I will have many more instances in life to create some kind of definite pattern. I got to go now and sleep.

More about it later.

Bye

My First Big Step

In coming few days, I will be free to do what I want without bothering about my boss and monthly salary. I guess I will be living the dream of every free soul. No I am not going to exile. I am going to pursue Masters education in a US School in Computer Science subject starting Fall 2011.

My Visa is still not done and there is four months time before I get my boarding pass. Till then I will be at home with my parents and execute some study plans as its been long since I left college and will rather spend sometime building some muscles before the actual fight than getting knocked down on first blow. Many had advised me to wait till my Visa stamping but I must say, "I was bored to death at job and needed an immediate change". The decision was not hasty and well thought of and it was difficult on my part too, to let go 4 months salary. I said, "Dude, if you don't take chance today, you will regret all your life. Give yourself one chance at least" and then I leaped. It can also be termed as leap of faith because only then can we see something different emerging. If I fail in Visa (pray I dont), I still know that I will be starting something new in august.

I have been waiting for this opportunity for as long as 4 yrs. It was not easy road. I went all directions (MS, MBA, CMI, Finland, Sweden, Singapore, UK) before I got UMASS Lowell. I cannot be more happy. Success has many fathers (remember my old post), well yes and I too have them and they all contributed considerable. My next phase is important in life as I have to decide to pursue one of two career options seriously. No details now. It will be too much talking. Let's wait and watch.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Greatest Oscar Speech : Russell Crowe

This is the best Oscar Speech I have come across in recent times. Short and clear with a strong message for all.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Books Recommended by Donald Knuth

You might be thinking what makes me so interested to read books recommended by some one else. I think my reason is I adore this personality, Donald Knuth for his contribution to Computer Science research and he reminds me of my favorite professor Dr. B V Rao, Ex IIT Bombay Professor under whom I did my thesis. I am posting this blog as a placeholder for future reference so that if I land in a bookstore someday, I will have some reference to start and if I like it, I will buy them.
  • Life A Users Manual by Georges Perec (perhaps the greatest 20th century novel)
  • Gaudy Night by Dorothy L Sayers (captures Oxford high-table small-talk wonderfully)
  • An Instance of the Fingerpost by Iain Pears (also Oxford but in the 1660s)
  • Death of a Salesperson by Robert Barnard (who is at his best in short stories like these)
  • The Haj by Leon Uris (great to read on a trip to Israel)
  • Marjorie Morningstar by Herman Wouk (in-depth characters plus a whole philosophy)
  • On Food and Cooking by Harold McGee (applied biochemistry in the kitchen)
  • Food by Waverley Root (his magnum opus, a wonderful history of everything delicious)
  • The Golden Gate by Vikram Seth (the Great California Novel, entirely in 14-line sonnets)
  • The Age of Faith by Will Durant (volume 4 of his series, covers the years 325--1300)
  • Efronia by Stina Katchadourian (diaries and letters of a remarkable Armenian woman)
  • The Man Who Knew Infinity by Robert Kanigel (biographies of Ramanujan and Hardy)
  • Hackers by Steven Levy (incredibly well written tale of our times)
  • The Abominable Man by Maj Sjöwall and Per Wahlöö (one of their brilliantly Swedish detective novels)
  • Blasphemy by Douglas Preston (the best novel to deal with "science versus religion" that I've ever encountered)
  • Blacklist by Sara Paretsky (a brilliant characterization of the tragic state of politics and class relations in America that also happens to be an action-packed murder mystery)
  • The Travels of Ibn Battutah edited by Tim Mackintosh-Smith (fascinating and eye-opening journal by a 14th-century Muslim scholar)
  • Murder in the Museum of Man by Alfred Alcorn (delicious caricature of academic follies)
  • America (The Book): Teacher's Edition by Jon Stewart (has graffiti even better than the marginal notes in Concrete Mathematics
If you have any recommendations of books for me to read, please post it in the comments section.

Thank you & Happy Reading.
-Amit

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Poor Numbers

"Torture numbers, and they'll confess to anything." -Gregg Easterbrook
"Statistics are like bikinis. What they reveal is suggestive, but what they conceal is vital. " -Aaron Levenstein
"If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bull" -WC Fields
"Facts are stubborn things, but statistics are more pliable." ~Author Unknown

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Should NRI Teachers come back to India to teach.

The Times of India article of "India scouts for faculty among bright NRIs" it is being discussed of roping in Indian embassies for attracting NRI's settled in foreign countries back to India with the lure of teaching their brothers and sisters back home and give back to society. IIMB has already been on hiring spree and IIT's are adapting similar techniques.The single comment by Balasaheb (USA) on this article has drawn my interest to blog about it :-
I have been going to India as a visiting faculty to give lectures on specific topics to Medical College students and faculty. My experience is not very good. In a few places the intellectual level may be high but in most places the faculty has no motivation to remain up to date in their fields, introduce innovative teaching methods or integrate subject matter to provide better understanding of the subject. The curriculum rarely gets revised. Interaction among various departments is nonexistent. Overall my view is that in most colleges teaching is very old style and interest in doing research is almost absent. So my advice is that before you make a move on a permanent basis think twice, investigate the track record of the institution you are planning to go. Local politics is very bad and it will be very difficult for those who have been on the faculty of US schools to get adjusted to the limitless bureaucratic administration that is so ingrained in higher education in India. There are only a few exceptions.


Faculty shortage is no new thing and lack of enthusiasm in teachers is wide spread. Students lack the motivation to do research or basic project without peeping into others work. Changing the mindset of students is a big challenge as most of them desire of well paying job and learning comes second priority. Anyone who wish to come to this country surely need to be mentally strong to fight amongst odds and still rise among it. It is daunting and discouraging but I am sure the satisfaction of achievement will be at least 10 folds.


I understand that each one of us should give back to society. People especially expect this from NRI's thinking they have made big bucks and should be socialist enough to share a few with others. I fail to understand that why do we not consider it of priority for people already in the country and why only to few who have settled abroad. Each one wish comfort and there is no wrong if few among them have ditched the country for their selfish reason because there are still millions who have looted the country by staying here itself and have done very little for anyone outside their kith n kin.