Saturday, September 27, 2008

Let them eat cake

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Sunday_Specials/Let_them_eat_cake/articleshow/3508019.cms

Rajdeep Sardesai on the current state of affairs

http://www.ibnlive.com/blogs/rajdeepsardesai/1/52720/a-wednesday-and-beyond.html

An excellent article by Rajdeep Sardesai on the current state of affairs in India. Blasts after blasts keep happening but there seems to be no political will to actually tackle the issue. The only thing that politicians want to do is politics.

Monday, September 22, 2008

The site is back up

Finally I have been able to update my homepage after quite some time. It had been quite a while since I had updated my site. This time I decided to change the template also a little. I moved to a little more blue color. Content obviously has been updated. Lets see if I get time to update it again.

With the resume writing going on these days, a process of self-discovery and introspection is also going on. And while thinking about myself, I decided that it was time I revamped my homepage.

You can take a look at it here: http://www.abhinavjain.net.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Life comes back a full circle

While teaching the first-yearites today in the Java tutorial, I realized that life comes around a full circle. I was teaching with full enthusiasm and energy. Yet, there was a person who was sleeping and another one who seemed to be interested only in biting nails. Looking at that I realized for the first time how painful it is when you are putting in all your efforts and you do not see them being reciprocated from the other side, Coming to think of it, this fifth year is teaching me a lot of different things.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Friends

An hour ago I was in a gloomy mood and posting a sad post. And here I am dancing away to glory. How much difference do friends make. It is really awesome to see. Listen to a giggling friend and you actually forget what you were upto. That is the power a few people have in your life.

The taste of failure

I am sitting here trying to write something but all I know is that I am not feeling good. It is a very difficult thing to put down but I think the title of the post sums it up pretty well. And the feeling gets even more weird when you think you were poised to succeed surely and then out of nowhere failure stares you in the face. Anyways, these freak incidents do keep you tied down and you start to think again with your head.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Value for People

This day is teaching me that I seriously need to start valuing people. I am learning how important is that they are being good to me and hence it is equally important that I be good to them and make them feel the warmth.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

IITK alumnus helping Bihar flood victims

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/7606185.stm

<snip>
The catastrophic floods in the east Indian state of Bihar resulted in many deaths and much hardship, but the suffering could have been much worse if it was not for the efforts of some valiant individuals. One such hero was Anand Mohan, who has just graduated from India's premier engineering institute, the Indian Institute of Technology [IIT] and is set to join a multinational mining company in Australia in mid-October.
</snip>

It is great to see your own batch-mate doing such great work. You might not be a very close friend but it still feels nice to see someone doing a great job. I hope this is the first of many laudable things that the people of my batch are gonna do.

Horstman's Laws

#1:Until You’ve Got Something, You’ve Got Nothing
#2:You Don’t Get Credit For What You’ve Done,Only For What The Recruiter Knows You’ve Done
#3:I’ll Take 90% Less Ability For 10% More Attitude Every Day of the Week

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

GRE Word List

Looking at Manjish mugging up the word list, I was wondering what is the use of drinking up this list which you will never use in your life. I thought this might be a way to test language but then language is what is used today. Not some long list of words that are never used. Then the word list thing may be just a way to test your hard work and patience. But then there could be better ways to test that. You could simply look at the projects or publications or recommendations. If you wanted a standardized test score there may be some better way to do that. The word list thing appears very strange to me.

Compared to the GRE, GMAT seems a much more thought out test. It has Reading Comprehension, Critical Reasoning and Sentence Correction which at least on the face seem to test concepts that are needed everyday. Other than these, it has simple math as well as writing skills test. Overall GMAT appears to be a much better indicator of a person's personality than the GRE.

Monday, September 8, 2008

What's the meaning of loose?

Loose - not rigidly fastened or securely attached

Lose -
to suffer deprivation of or part with especially in an unforeseen or accidental manner

Now I don't know why people cannot understand the simple distinction between the above words. They are entirely different though they might have similar pronunciations. I notice that people blindly use the word 'loose' without realizing that they actually meant 'lose'.

Talking to a friend of mine, I realized that there were a lot of other things that people were commonly confused about. The most glaring example was 'there' & 'their'. Do I even need to explain the difference?

I got a new girlfriend

I got a new girlfriend. What I mean is that I generally need something to focus on in my life - I need a goal to keep going. And this must be the same thing with other people when they spend all their time on their girl friends. Without something to focus on, I seem really lost. Not that I am not lost otherwise. But still...

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Meeting with the Faculty

Recently, there has been a great concern in the department about declining interest of students in research. Hence a meeting was convened to discuss the same. Quite a few faculty and almost all graduate students were there. The reason why I am posting this here is because I am not feeling too good after the meeting.

I raised the valid concern that Dual Degree (Bachelors + Masters - 5years) students are only interested in just completing their thesis on time and getting out. They are just looking for a good job after graduation. This did not go down too well with the faculty. Somehow I did not like the way the faculty reacted to this. We were there to discuss the issues and I felt this was one thing that needed to be addressed. But it seemed as if it hurt people on a personal level. A few people started talking as if what I was saying was blasphemous. But one needs to realize that a dual degree student is essentially an undergraduate rather than a postgraduate in attitude. They joined a course directly out of school and did not realize whether they actually wanted to do research or not.

The above issue apart, I was happy that a few other valid concerns were raised in the meeting as well. Lack of faculty was discussed as was the lack of special interest groups. A few first year m-tech students raised the issue that they felt overburdened but I personally feel that this is more about managing time than anything else.

After the meeting I was discussing with Ashish what is the real cause of lack of motivation in dual degree students. We were of the opinion that the atmosphere for research is not there. If somehow we can create such an atmosphere things might improve. Creation of special interest groups is one way. We realized that if such groups can be sustained successfully, a lot of people will take part in them. Even people looking for jobs will be interested in such groups. Lets see how things turn out.

I think the essence of the meeting was that finally we need to introspect what is wrong and why is the motivation not there. Taking my personal case, I was interested in doing computer science and even on campus scored better in comp science courses as compared to other courses. But somehow, I cannot imagine myself doing a PhD. I am not motivated enough to stick to academia. The 4+ years at IIT K have not really added to my zeal for computer science so that I can think of continuing in it for the rest of my life. Hence I started looking for other alternatives.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

What to blog?

Till the time one does not maintain a blog, one keeps wishing that if there was a blog what all one could write and share with others. But once you set up a blog, it becomes difficult to actually pen down anything. Not that the ideas stop coming, they are still there aplenty. But a process of evaluation kicks in. At least, with me this happens quite a lot. I start thinking whether should I even share this or should I keep it to myself. What will people think about me? Will I come across as too kiddish or too mature? Or will I be revealing too much about myself? The final result is there for all to see - my second post on the blog and yet nothing substantial up there.