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Personal

Working on Side Projects

Working on Side Projects can be really fun. But, you know what’s not fun and sucks? Not finishing the project and abandoning it (also, Global Warming). This is a very common problem and most of us struggle with it.

It gets trickier. Once you lose interest in the project and abandon it, guilt kicks in, as if we don’t have enough issues to deal with already. At this point it becomes really annoying having to fight with your conscience about the abandoned project. You don’t feel like working on it and at the same time you can’t really leave it. It’s just pure bliss at this point. 😇

One fine Sunday afternoon, you gather your thoughts and try to focus on your project and trim it from an ambitious project to a simpler project. You feel good about yourself for having found a way to deal with the problem. That’s when you notice a cool new tool. BAM! Suddenly, you notice all of your efforts and the interest you managed to build up, going down the drain. Can you stop it? No. What do you do instead? Go ahead and try out the cool new tool that’s going to make your life so much more awesome. What about your project? That can wait. You’re confident that you will be able to come back later and finish your project using the cool new tool.

Three months go by and you are finally at a point in your life where you feel confident and comfortable to say goodbye to your project and move on to a new one.

Moving Fast and Breaking Things

In the past, I’ve started a lot of projects and miserably failed to finish them. I even thought of moving fast and breaking things. In reality, that didn’t really work. It’s definitely not because the philosophy is flawed. It’s because my perception of the philosophy was flawed. I’ve realized what I was doing wrong and corrected it over the past few years. I’ve tried a lot of things and didn’t really find anything helpful.

Reasons for Abandoning Projects

After spending a lot of time thinking about why I kept abandoning my projects, I noticed a common theme and was able to compile a list of reasons that made me abandon my side projects.

Lack of Prioritization

Imagine working on a project where you have tasks that are not prioritized. You have no idea which task you’d work on after you finish the current task. It’s hard to continue working on something while not knowing what needs to be worked on next. Also, give yourself enough time. Make sure your deadlines are reasonable. Be extremely honest with yourself when setting up deadlines.

Unfamiliar Tooling/Technology

If you use tools that you’re not familiar with, you spend a lot of time learning to use them. After a few days, you find yourself working on an entirely different project – Learning to use the New Tools. Understand what’s important to you, learning the new tools, or completing the project. I know that these don’t have to be mutually exclusive, but, that’s how it is most of the time. If picking up a new tool is fairly quick, that’s absolutely fine. It’s unlikely that it’d distract you. Or, at least try to minimize introducing too much of new tooling into the project.

Not knowing the value

If you ever try to work on something that you’re not interested in and just think that it might be useful for others, chances are that you might never finish the project. If you truly understand how a project might be of value to you, it’s likely that you’ll stay interested in finishing the project. Your project doesn’t even have to be brand new. It could be something that has been implemented over a hundred times by others. When in doubt, just ask yourself, “Why am I doing this?”.

Perfection

Yep, perfection. Perfection is a major distraction. If it’s a side project and you’re the only one who’s going to be using it initially, don’t aim for perfection early on. This can work against you. Instead, make it an iterative process. This reminds me of the following quote:

If you’re not embarrassed when you ship your first version, you waited too long.

Matt Mullenweg, CEO of WordPress

Also, this is a perfect segue to the next reason for abandoning projects.

Lack of Iterations

If you think of a project as a whole, the project scope becomes too much to handle. Instead, you can build it in several iterations. Ship the Minimum Viable Product (MVP) first. Iterate on it later. Shipping the first version is very important. I do it with all of my projects and it has been very effective.

Lack of context

There have been times when I started a project, worked on it for a few days and stayed away from it for a week or two. When I came back to the project, it felt like I was missing the context from where I left off. So, I started journaling my thoughts regarding the project right after I stopped working on it. The next time I got back to the project, I’d read through my thoughts and pick up from right where I left off, with very little effort. This technique made me stay consistent with my projects.

I’ve struggled staying focused on side projects and abandoned a lot them in the past. Identifying these bottlenecks helped me optimize my process of working on side projects. Before publishing this post, I had all of these reasons as a checklist that I’d go through before starting any side project, as a reminder to be careful with these bottlenecks.

What bottlenecks do you face when working on side projects? Let me know in the comments section below.

Categories
Personal

Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones
Image from the iconic Game of Thrones title sequence

I just finished watching the series finale of Game of Thrones (GoT) and it feels like the end of an era.

I grew up watching the show these past 8 years. I still remember the day my ex-roommate, Gopi, suggested it to me for the very first time. I had just graduated and was actively looking for jobs at the time and wanted to start watching something to take my mind off of my job hunt.

I watched the very first episode of the show and immediately got hooked. It was extremely captivating. It wasn’t like anything I had seen before on TV. The quality of the show was unprecedented.

I started watching the show knowing nothing about the books. I loved it. It instantly became my favorite TV series. I binge-watched the rest of the episodes of the first season and waited for the season finale and watched it with even more excitement. Ever since the first season, whenever the show aired, I waited every Sunday eagerly for HBO to drop a new GoT episode and watched it immediately to avoid the risk of spoilers all over the internet.

I, like many of the others who watched the show, rooted for all the main characters, not knowing their fate. I felt bad every time a character that I rooted for died. I obsessively followed all the fan theories on Reddit and many other sources. This was the first time I had seen such a response to a TV show.

I do agree that there has been a quality drop since the part where the story from the books ended, nevertheless, it’s a great TV show.

George R. R. Martin (GRRM) is a genius for coming up with such great content and HBO did a great job by turning it into a TV series.

Thank you, GRRM & HBO for such a brilliant experience.

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2019

Happy New Year! 🎉

2018 has been a great year for me. Both, professionally and personally. I’ve managed to be very productive in 2018 and it has been a very humbling experience.

2017 was a particularly tough year for me. I was really sad, went through a lot and I wanted to pull myself back together. It was a tough phase of my life. I realized that and I wanted to get a hold of myself. I knew that I needed a ton of discipline in order to do that.

I wanted to set some resolutions for myself. Unlike previous years, this time I was serious. I wanted to make sure I stuck to them and so, I came up with a few challenges for myself for 2018. Some are personal to me and I can’t share them. However, the others that I can share publicly are below.

Blogging ✍️

I tend to procrastinate a lot when it comes to blogging. I, typically, start of a blog by gathering my thoughts and then organizing them into something that makes sense. This process of organizing is not really complicated. But I make it complicated. I keep trying to achieve perfection around tiny details and I never really end up finish my posts. So, in 2018, I wanted to stop doing that and write 12 blog posts.

I’ve successfully managed to write 9. I don’t see it as me failing to write the remaining 3 posts. Instead, I’m happy knowing the fact that I came up with a framework to stop procrastinating and writing more posts. It is now, a much more streamlined process, allowing me to just focus on the content of the post.

Travel 📍

I travelled a decent amount in 2018. I visited the following places:

  • Virginia
  • Las Vegas
  • Salt Lake City
  • Antelope Canyon
  • Denver
  • Los Angeles
  • Newark
  • New York City
  • Boston

Weight Loss 🏋️‍♂️

After almost a decade of being overweight, I finally chose to prioritize my health. I’ve always had trouble staying disciplined and being consistent with my diet and exercise. I wanted to change that.

I put in a lot of effort and successfully lost weight. I’ve lost 20+ lbs. I’m no longer overweight. My clothes are all now a size smaller. Even though I’ve lost a decent amount of weight, what gives me more happiness is knowing that I’m capable of staying disciplined.

Learning ✨

I learned to swim. I suck at it, but, it counts for something. Also, I learned a new programming language, Go.

Books 📚

I didn’t read many books last year. Here’s my Goodreads for 2018.

Good luck 🍀

I haven’t come up with any resolutions for 2019, yet. I’ll probably post about them if I come up with any.

With that being said, I hope you all have a fantastic 2019. All the best with your resolutions and I wish you all a wonderful and prosperous New Year. Cheers! 🍻

Categories
Fitness Personal

Weight Loss

Up until mid 2008, I had always been underweight. I used to be extremely lean and my focus back then was to gain weight. I wanted to look decent when I wore shirts and not look like someone hung a shirt on a coat hanger. To get a mental picture, I’m a little over 5’9” and weighed 120 lbs. With the focus to get bigger and look more muscular, I joined a gym. Every single day, besides the weekends, I put in my best effort and exercised sincerely. I knew I had to gain weight and so, I ate a lot of food. I didn’t really care about which foods to eat or if a particular food was healthy or not. My focus was purely on gaining weight and building muscle. Within 6 months, these changes started showing. I gained a decent amount of weight and by August 2009, I weighed 154 lbs. Mission accomplished.

Becoming Overweight

In the Summer of 2010, I decided to look for an internship to get some industry experience. However, I failed to find an internship and so, I spent the entire summer learning iOS application development and built an iOS app. I basically ended up all day staying home, watching football, learning iOS programming and doing nothing else. As a result, I gained a lot of weight due to my sedentary lifestyle. I ended up weighing 174 lbs by the end of that summer. That was the first time I became overweight. The ideal weight for a male of my height lies in the range of 125 lbs to 168 lbs.

Ever since that summer, I stopped caring about my health. Way too many things became higher priority. For a few years, I had “hit the gym regularly and stay healthy” as one of my New Year resolutions. I could never really do it as I hit the gym only a few times a year. I became really lazy. Fast forward to January 2018, I weighed 187 lbs.

Road to Improvement

Upon my wife’s recommendation (and enough motivation), I booked an appointment for my annual physical with my Doctor. On June 8th, as per my doctor’s suggestion, I started using MyFitnessPal and started keeping track of my weight using my Withings Smart Body Analyzer. I’ve used MyFitnessPal in the past, but, never consistently. This time, I knew I would use it religiously since my doctor suggested it. I have my Withings Smart Body Analyzer setup such that it pushes my weight data to MyFitnessPal every time I step on the scale. I cannot recommend this enough! This is such a useful feature.

Current State

As of September 13th, I weigh 165.8 lbs. That means, I’ve lost 21.2 lbs since January 1st and 18.5 lbs since June 8th, the date my doctor suggested that I get my shit together. :tada: This puts me back in the healthy weight range for my height and age. For the first time in a little over 8 years, I am in the healthy weight range.

Here’s an (updated 10/14/18) image showing where I currently stand on the BMI scale:

How Did I do it?

If you want to lose weight, you need to understand 2 things:

  1. The science behind weight loss
  2. How to keep yourself motivated and maintain consistency

The science behind weight loss

Weight loss ultimately boils down to simple science. At least for the most part.

Caloric Deficit leads to weight loss

You need to burn 3,500 calories in order to burn 1 pound of fat. What it means is that you lose 1 pound of fat over a period of 1 week, by consuming 500 fewer calories than your BMR (Basal Metabolic Rate), everyday.

500 cals (caloric deficit per day) x 7 (days of the week) = 3,500 cals (caloric deficit over a week) = 1 pound (weight lost by the end of the week).

Motivation and Consistency

There’s only so much understanding the science behind weight loss can do to your weight loss journey. Motivation is extremely important. Discipline and Consistency, even more. Staying motivated through out the period is really hard. The following helped me stay motivated throughout the process:

  • Not over-thinking about the process
  • Focussing on the result of no more than 1 week at a time
  • Being sincere and respecting the process, since, perspective drives performance

Every week, I’d check my weight and watching my weight drop really motivated me.

What’s next

I still need to lose some more weight. My goal weight is 163.2 lbs. Here’s a live tracker of the progress of my weight loss.

Update (10/14/18): I’ve hit my goal! and here’s a screenshot of the tracker.

Conclusion

There’re so many people out there, who’ve lost way more than 20 lbs of weight. I’ve always believed that if they can do it, I can too. Now you just need to believe that if I can do it, you sure can too!

I want to inspire at least a few people and help them achieve their weight loss goals.

Categories
Personal

Domain name purchase obsession

I love buying interesting domain names. I do that with the hope that one day, I end up using the domain name for one of my side projects or at least work on a side project after purchasing the domain name. Sometimes, I just think of an idea and come up with a good name for it and immediately buy a domain name for it (I blame domainr.com for making it so simple to lookup domain names). Due to various reasons, I don’t get to most of those projects. I end up hoarding the domain names. On one hand, I don’t let go of them and on the other, I feel guilty paying for the domain names and not even using them.

Realization

I realized that I was spending way too much money on domain name renewals on a yearly basis. It was a lot. I knew that I owned a lot of domain names, but, I didn’t really keep track of them. So, one fine day, 3 years ago, I opened up my domain registrar accounts and checked how many domains I owned. Across 3 different domain registrars, I owned a total of 62 domain names! Some were interesting, funny, creative, while some were stupid and some were just silly. Since, I owned a lot of domain names, I was marked as a VIP member by one of the domain registrars. I’d receive special discounts and offers that non-VIP members wouldn’t.

The Fix

The fix was simple really (unlike the realization). I could either sell all my domain names, which is a tedious process and requires a lot of patience or I could let them expire. The latter seemed more appealing to me and so, I let my domain names expire, one by one. Most of them are now registered to other owners. Also, I decided to only buy a domain name after I finish implementing the idea. I did that with my Money app and it worked really well for me. I still do hit domainr.com up, every now and then, but, I don’t buy domain names if I haven’t already worked on the idea. As a result of this approach, after 3 years, I, now, own only 8 domain names and I use them all.

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2018

""

Wish you all a very Happy and Prosperous New Year!

🎉 Cheers!

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2017

""

Last year, I, royally screwed up the timing of my year in review post by posting it in July.

I know, July is not really the best time to wish someone a Happy New Year, but, unfortunately, that was when I snapped out of my laziness to write a blog post. I didn’t want to miss my year in review blog and so I did it anyway…in July.

This year, I don’t want to be lazy and so, here it is, on the 2nd of January (I had friends come over on the 1st and so, I couldn’t find time to blog).

I had a fun 2016. It basically included traveling, adventures, reading, a lot of video gaming and tiny traces of fitness.

Here are the highlights —

January

  • Visited Birla Mandir in Hyderabad
  • Returned back to the United States from my India trip
  • Moved out of Fremont, CA

February

  • Visited Monterey Bay Aquarium
  • Took part in the Canvas & Cabernet event and ended up painting
  • Visited Safari West in Santa Rosa

March

  • Started reading a couple of books

April

  • Went hiking at Half Moon Bay
  • Went hiking at Purisima Creek
  • Visited my Sister and Brother-in-law in Los Angeles

May

  • Ran my first ever non-stop 5k. It was on a treadmill though. I ended up running 42 miles in 2016, 16 of which were in May.
  • Went hiking at Sequoia National Park
  • Visited Grizzly falls and Three Rivers (CA)

June

  • Went hiking at Mt. Diablo

July

  • Flew down to Seattle for my friends’ bachelor party (1 party for 2 guys)

August

  • Almost all of my friends here have their birthdays in July and August (incl. my wife) and so I ended up being busy organizing/attending these “surprise” parties

September

  • Became a member of Top Golf
  • Went Indoor Sky Diving. It was fun

October

  • Celebrated Diwali
  • Successfully completed my first year at my current company

November

  • Went on a road trip to Las Vegas and made a profit playing Black Jack

December

  • Visited my Sister and Brother-in-law during my flight’s layover in Los Angeles
  • Celebrated my 1st Wedding Anniversary by visiting Costa Rica. It was a fantastic & adventurous trip. Our activities included Canyoneering, Zip lining, Hiking the majestic Arenal Volcano in the rainforest and hiking around the hanging bridges
  • My buddy, Sravan, visited CA and we ended up driving down to Mt. Diablo and Napa valley
  • Had a nice NYE in San Francisco. Watched the fireworks

A few years ago, I gave up on the concept of New Year’s Resolutions, since, I never ended up keeping them. This has always been the case with me and now I want to change that. I want to challenge myself. I want to become a better version of me. I have a couple of ideas that would help me achieve my goals. I will share them soon in a separate blog post.

And with that, I’ll wrap up my post.

I wish you all a fun-filled, wonderful & prosperous New Year.

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2016

I haven’t yet wished you guys a Happy New Year since this is the first time I’m blogging this year. This is awkward. I’m going to go ahead and do it anyway –

Happy New Year 2016 🎉

""

Here’s a quick recap of what I did in 2015:

January, February

  • (Nothing interesting happened)

March

  • I feel like I coded a lot in March, last year.
  • Had a fun St. Paddy’s day at Work (I sprayed my hair Green)

April

  • Celebrated Holi at Stanford University with my buddies
  • Caught up with my friends in Vegas for my buddy’s bachelor party

May

June, July

  • (Nothing interesting happened)

August

  • Went hiking a couple of times

September

  • (Nothing interesting happened)

October

  • Attended a fun halloween party. I dressed up as Walter White from Breaking Bad
  • Quit my job ❤️

November

  • Started working at a new Startup 🎉
  • Had a fun bachelor party with my buddies at Lake Tahoe

December

  • Flew back to India after 2 years ❤️
  • Got hitched 💍 😀

Overall, it was a great year. Hope you guys had a great year too and hope you have a fun filled rest of the year!

Cheers!

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2015

March, not really the time of the year to wish someone a Happy New Year. I know, I usually have this post ready within the first two weeks of January (with an exception of last year). I have been
extremely busy with work and my side projects over the past few months and I could not really find time to blog. I hope I don’t write next year’s HNY blog post in April 😉

Without further ado, let me jump into last year’s highlights.

Highlights

  • Started going to the gym in January, for reals. (I’ve been a paying member for over 2 years though :P). Lost 22 lbs by the end of May
  • Pretty much utilized all of the 3-day weekends for fun stuff in 2014
      • My friends and I, flew down to West Virginia for the 4th of July weekend. We went mountain biking and white water rafting
      • My family was in San Francisco in September and it was fun
      • In November, my friends flew in to SF for the Thanksgiving weekend and that was fun too. We went snorkeling and drove down to Napa Valley
        and tasted some wines.
  • I started this thing where I create a new playlist for each month on Spotify (starting from March 2014).
  • Took a lot of photos on my Camera
  • Worked on a few side projects

Resolutions

#StayHealthy #StayPositive

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2014

Hello everyone! I know it’s February already but I never got to wish you guys a Happy New Year.

So, here you go:

""

Here’s a quick recap of what I did in 2013:

January

  • Created an open source component called “Hi5”.

February, March, April

  • (Nothing interesting happened)

May

  • Had a great vacation in Vegas with my childhood friends. Lost a lot of money at the casinos though.

June

  • (Nothing interesting happened)

July

  • Bought my first DSLR camera.
  • Went out fishing, for the first time, with my colleagues.

""

August, September

  • (Nothing interesting happened)

October, November

  • This was the most exciting part of 2013. I flew back to India after 3 years for my sister’s wedding.
    Had a wonderful time there with family and friends.

December

  • Got back to the United States after a wonderful vacation.
  • Attended a fun company sponsored Holiday Lunch. This year we were each given an Apple TV as a holiday gift.
  • Got shitfaced on NYE!

""

Resolutions

Last year, I only had one resolution; Be more positive. I like to think I did keep that resolution. This year, however, I don’t have any resolutions. That’s pretty much the New Year related part of this post.

Photography

I didn’t blog much last year. I wrote only two posts in 2013. I spent more time away from my computer, which, in a way, is a really good thing for me. I took better care of my health. I also developed an interest in photography and learned the basics of using a DSLR camera in Manual mode (thanks to my friends Andrew & Winnie).

I wish to take even more photos this year and hope even you guys are up to something interesting this year. Have another awesome 11 months!

CHEERS!

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2013

I know I am super late but I am going to go ahead and do it anyway,
Happy New Year 2013 everyone!

""

2012

Hope you all had a wonderful 2012. I myself had a few eye-opening experiences (personally and professionally) and was in a miserable situation for the most part of 2012 but I have no regrets. I’ve learnt a lot last year and I’m proud of it. Let me share my experiences in 2012 with you all:

January

  • I got very sick and was bed ridden for 2 weeks. It was a depressing month.

February

  • In an attempt to keep up one of my resolutions for 2012, I joined the gym. And you know how it goes in the first few months, right?

""

March

  • I quit going to the gym (but I never stopped paying).
  • In the later part of March, I crashed and burned.

April

  • Gave my sister a surprise visit for her birthday and fell sick at her place. She ended up taking care of me. I bet she did get surprised, although I am not sure what surprised her more, my sickness or my visit.

May

  • Went back to Bowling Green, KY, after 6 months for my friends’ graduation. Had a good time there.

June

  • I have zero memory of what I did in June.

July

  • Sis visited my place.
  • Had fun exploring California.
  • My friends (Anurag anna & Macha) came down to my place (from Bowling Green) and we had a great time.

""

  • Bought a car.

""

August

  • Just when I thought 2012 was getting better, my good friend, Anurag anna passed away in a car accident :(. It was shocking.
  • I was heart broken and had to visit Bowling Green only to make myself feel even more worse.

September

  • Jumped off a plane from an altitude of 18,000 ft. It was a great experience. I think it was the adrenaline rush that sort of reset my thoughts. It was memorable.

October

  • Nothing interesting happened.

November

  • Had an awesome Thanksgiving vacation with my friends in Florida.
  • Successfully completed my first year at BillFloat.
  • Came to know that an OpenSource JavaScript plugin that I contributed to a while ago, was heavily used by the front-end development team for the “Obama For America” campaign.

December

  • Got very busy at work. We released code 2-3 times a week in December.
  • Had a great NYE party with friends in San Francisco!

OpenSource

I did contribute to a few Open Source apps in 2012. This year however, I intend to contribute even more.

Resolutions

Last year’s resolutions:

  • [✔] Be productive
  • [✔] Donate money
  • [✔] Complete what I started
  • [✔] Be less selfish
  • [-] Be cool
  • [↓] Lose weight in a healthy way and work out at least 18 days a month. (The arrow pointing downwards indicates that I did the opposite by gaining weight. Oh and BTW my overall number of visits to the gym in 2012 was not even 18)

This year’s resolutions:

I only have one resolution for this year. Be more positive. These two blog posts, Chase Happiness and Lokaah Samastaah Sukhino Bhavantu, changed the way I think. They’re pretty impressive and have a fair amount of influence on me. I think you should definitely check them out.

I would like to conclude this post by saying, be more positive and be happy. Hope you all have a great year ahead!

Categories
Personal

Happy Sankranthi 2012

Wish you all a very Happy Sankranthi.

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2012

Bill Gates (B): Okay. So, shall we begin?

Me (MT): Yeah. Sure.

B: So, what’s the reason behind this sudden blog post?

MT: Sudden? pfft…It’s New Year. So, this is my customary post. Of course, since nobody visits my blog, it’s not a surprise that you don’t know about it. Anyhow, moving on…

B: Then why don’t you blog more frequently?

MT: There are two reasons for that:

  • I am lazy.
  • Who reads my blog anyways? (Come on admit it, you’re reading this blog either because you’re jobless or there is nothing on this earth left to do which is lesser boring than reading my blog or you were redirected here by some spammy website)
  • There’re a zillion other Social Networks to catch up with.
  • I am lazy.
  • I am busy with my work and my side projects that I’ve been working on lately.

B: Side projects? Can you elaborate what they are and what you’ve been working on?

MT: No.

B: That was insightful.

MT: Thank you.

B: What were your biggest achievements in 2011?

MT: Well, 2011 helped me gain a lot of respect. Yeah. So much, that the doors open-up themselves seeing me at airports, malls, grocery stores etc.

B: Airports…Have you been travelling too much?

MT: Good question. In 2011, I travelled a lot. I had the wonderful opportunity to live in Eastern, Central and Pacific timezones.

B: That should’ve been fun.

MT: Yeah, no. You might think it was, but no. But that sure helped me make up a new resolution.

B: What is it?

MT: Visit all the 50 states in the United States. Not in just a single year, but at least I should start with this year. And by visit I mean, I should stay in a place for at least a night in any State.

B: That sounds interesting. What are your other resolutions?

MT: There’re a few.

  • Be productive.
  • Donate money.
  • Lose weight in a healthy way and work out at least 18 days a month.
  • Complete what I started.
  • Be less selfish.
  • Be cool.

B: Most of these look like your last year’s resolutions. Don’t they?

MT: Yeah. They are. So what do you get from that?

B: That you never were able to keep up any of your resolutions?

MT: 10 points for the correct answer. Claps

B: Okay, now let’s skip to the last part. What according to you have been the highlights in 2011?

MT: Let me recollect. Thinks Yeah. Here they are:

  • I met some amazing people.
  • I went through a very tough time and survived.
  • Nailed an awesome job at a Start-up.
  • Visited some great/good/bad/ugly places.
  • My country won the cricket World Cup.
  • Had my first ever surprise birthday party ( tears rolling down )
  • Travelled between the dates September 11-15, October 11-15, November 11-15 and December 11-15. Amazing coincidence, right?

B: Sure. Whatever you say. Okay now, with that we wrap up this wonderful conversation. Have a wonderful year ahead. Take care.

MT: That is so kind of you to call this conversation “wonderful”. Anyhow, have a Wonderful and Prosperous New Year ahead.

/me wakes up

Categories
Personal

My trip to India (Dec 2010 – Jan 2011)

It has been 24 days (already) since I’ve returned to India for my vacation and I am totally enjoying my stay here. It’s been awesome all the while. I met all my friends (School, Intermediate, Engineering and WKU of course) and some of my relatives. I had my favorite Chicken Biryani, Chicken 65 and many other foods which are part of the Indian Cuisine. I had been to almost all the places I love here. I may have put on some weight but I seriously doubt it.

There are two things though which bug me here – the pollution and the Internet speed. Both suck big time. Apart from these, everything is beautiful. I am feeling bad coz I’ve to go back to the US very soon. I do like my place back in the US, Bowling Green (Kentucky), but home is always much more fun. The festivals here are the best part. They are very lively, colorful and festive.

Speaking of festivals yesterday was Sankranthi, the “kites’ festival” as I fondly call it. Sankranthi happens to be my first favorite festival (2nd being Ugadi). I had loads of fun yesterday and the day before, flying kites with all my buddies. It was awesome meeting all my pals at the same time. 1 terrace, 21 friends, million kites, unlimited fun. It reminded me of my childhood days. I used to along with my friends, fly kites from three months before the festival till three months after the festival. That’s the amount of love I have for the festival.

Anyways, let me tell you guys about what we (my friends & I) did yesterday. After it was late in the evening, my friend Subbu said that he should fly a kite far enough until the thread (manja – sharp thread and saadhi – soft thread) was finished. While he was onto it, I suggested that we tie something (some color paper from torn kites) to the thread just to make sure that we know where the kite was (It was getting really dark and the kite was out of our scope). As we did that, another pal, Amar, came up with another idea, stating that we tie some more kites to the existing thread. We did that as well. Now, at this point, he got another idea. This probably was the weirdest part of the fun that we had yesterday. He suggested that we tie even some trash from the left over papers and stuff. So, as per the plan, we did that too and flew it. 😀

But that was not enough. We wanted more fun. Next, it was my friend Prashanth’s turn. He suggested that we burn crackers since it got really dark. I said yes. After a while our minds became even crazier and we started tying the crackers to the thread of the kite, lit them, flew the kite and watched the crackers fire up in the sky. We had an awesome time doing this little experiment of ours 😀 I will definitely miss all this. Anyways, how is it goin’ on with you guys?

PS: Will upload the video and the pics ASAP

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2011

Happy New Year!? Observe the above line carefully. Did you? Good.
I was just trying to play with your attention 😀

Anyways, guys how was your 2010? I hope it was great. Mine was good. Not great. Good. I have learnt practically many things in life in 2010. I am thankful to 2010 for that. I learned that I should not depend on anyone for anything. Do my work myself. And most importantly, not to plan stuff. Planning stuff ruins everything. (In my case) But on an honest note, **FUCK YOU **2010. You literally messed my life up. Absolutely zero productivity, one messed-up head and two B’s to my GPA.

Ok, let me not get emotional here. Let me tell you about my last year’s resolutions and how they went. Yeah. My resolutions. My first resolution was to work hard, which I terribly failed at. I never worked hard. In fact I wasted a lot of my precious time (special mentions: facebook and twitter) and when I had time, I was in neck-deep problems. My 2nd resolution was to try not to be lazy. Had I not been lazy, I would have blogged on the 1st of January itself. So, to hell with that. I hope at least you guys were committed to your resolutions. Anyways, here is my new set of New Year resolutions. (I withdrew my previous ones, punctuality and regularity. Whom am I kidding?)

  • Keep my resolutions this year. Take resolutions more seriously.
  • Be productive.
  • Donate at least $100.
  • Lose weight in a healthy way and work out. At least 18 days every month.
  • Complete what I started.
  • Be less selfish. With that, here I am wishing y’all an awesome 2011. Cheers.

PS: If any of you guys are willing to sponsor a Johnny Walker Blue, please don’t hesitate to stop by. My doors are always open for such generous people.

Categories
Personal

12 Things I do when I get bored

There are certain things which people do when they get bored. I have listed the things that I do when I get bored.

  1. Facebook:
      1. Open https://facebook.com
      2. Check out everyone’s activity.
      3. Think of an “Über-cool” status message.
      4. Overthink about the Über-cool status message to an extent that it sounds lame.
      5. Drop the idea and head to https://twitter.com
  2. Give World Peace a thought. (Yeah, I do that a lot :D)
  3. Make phone calls.
  4. Think about working out.
  5. Mail:
      1. Check email inbox every two minutes.
      2. Get excited to find a new email.
      3. Trash the message knowing that it’s just a spam message/newsletter/offer advertisement from Amazon/GoDaddy.com.
  6. Plan on cleaning my room.
  7. Sit outside and stare into the sky for several minutes with absolutely nothing on my mind.
  8. Take some pictures using my cellphone.
  9. Listen to music and/or watch crappy movies.
  10. Watch Natalie Tran’s videos.
  11. Reorganize my phone book.
  12. De-clutter my desktop.

Now I’m really bored and I can’t think of anything else. As a result, in an attempt to do something different I ended up successfully writing a blog.

Categories
Personal

Happy New Year 2010

Time seems to be in a hurry. Last year seems like yesterday to me. ‘Tis January 10th, 2010 already. Anyways, Happy New Year everybody.

It feels good to get back to you all after a long time. Time has been the major reason for my absence all the while. It didn’t let me write a post. To be frank I didn’t find anything worth blogging. Finally when I had the time, patience, content and the will to write a post, I got bedridden for almost a week. This post was intended to be posted on the 1st of January. I wasn’t well and hence, the delay. I always wish that life had the options to rewind and fast-forward. If I rewind myself a year back, and then just play the highlights, this would be the result.

January 2009: The saddest and most disgusting month of 2009. Lost one of my best friends Rohit Santosh and my grandpa 🙁

February 2009: Bought hosting and the domains http://blog.mohni.sh/ and http://mohnish.net The 2nd one actually came free with my hosting account 🙂

March 2009: Started working on my blog and posted my first blog post.

April 2009: Completed my final year project. Voted for the first time. Had both fun and sad moments in the last month of engineering.

May 2009: Celebrated my b’day 😉

June 2009: Got busy with Visa processing.

July 2009: Got my Visa to U.S.A.

August 2009: U.S.A had the honor of meeting me…face to face. 😛

September 2009: 1st month of education in U.S.A. Got my Dell Vostro 1320.

October 2009: Improved my culinary skills.

November 2009: Spent most of the time on Social networking websites.

December 2009: Finals, project submissions and of course…relaxation. So, that was me in 2009. I’m hoping that 2010 brings loads of excitement and happiness into my life and yours too.

Have a great year ahead.

Categories
Personal

Voted at last

The other day, I had the opportunity to vote for the first time. There are first times for everyone for many different things in life. In most of the cases people tend to get excited about doing things for the first time. I’m no exception. I was very excited about voting for the first time. I got up early, got ready and went to the polling station in our locality at 8.00 AM in the morning, thinking that there wouldn’t be anyone at that time. But when I reached the polling station I realized that everyone in our locality had exactly the same thought in their minds. It was completely full and there was a long queue in which I had to wait. I thought I had to wait at least an hour or so for my turn. And it turned out to be what I thought. I stood in the queue for an hour and it was 9.00 AM by the time I came out. I got so bored standing in the queue. I didn’t know what to do. I thought of taking some photos using my cellphone and I did so.

Categories
Personal

Project Experience

Now that my Project External is finished, I’m a free bird (well, at least for a while because I’ve my final exams starting in a few days). Project work was very hectic. Generally the coding part is done first and then the documentation part. But in my case it was entirely different. We completed the documentation part first and then we completed the coding part. Sounds strange? But that was what had exactly happened. We had no time for the coding part and the deadline for submitting the documentation of our project to the University was getting deadlier (I meant that the deadline was getting close :D. Forgive my poor S.O.H). So we had to get our documentation ready and get the printing done. The only way we could do that was to imagine how the interface of the “undeveloped” new module would look like and prepare its dummy screens. And that was what we did.

Our project was actually being developed using ASP .NET with C# and MS Access as our database. But, we developed the new screens using HTML and took screenshots of them to use in the documentation part of our project. We even implemented JavaScript alerts in these fake screens. The same JavaScript would execute each time for a new screenshot, only with the alert text changed. All the new screens were thus created and the documentation part was successfully completed. We immediately gave our soft copy for printing and got the books bound. Once all this was done, we continued with the coding part. We actually wanted to skip certain aspects of the project, but couldn’t. That was because we had already put those screenshots in the project documentation. As a result, we had to work like dogs to complete the coding part.

I worked till 3.30 AM in the morning of the day on which our final external seminar was scheduled. By then the project was complete with very minor changes left behind. I had given my pen-drive to my friend, Sravan, who in turn gave it to another friend of his. Thanks to him, I didn’t have a pen-drive to take my code to the college. So, I sent Amar, another friend of mine, an SMS asking him his pen-drive. This was the exact content of that SMS: “Dude, I need ur pen-drive. Plz get it 2 me 2mro early in da mrng…jus in case if m asleep, dn wake me up. Ok.” I worked till 3.45 AM and dozed off. I thought that Amar would wake me up early when he comes to my place to hand me over the pen-drive. With this confidence I went to bed happily. Suddenly I woke up and saw that the time was 6.25 AM. I had to develop some minor parts in the code and so I started doing that till 7.20 AM. My bus reaches my stop by 8.00 AM and I had to be there by 7.55 AM. I got ready and I asked my dad whether Amar had come. He said that he had come and given the pen-drive. Without wasting a single minute I copied my project code into it and rushed to my stop and boarded my bus. Amar too was there in the bus. I asked him why he didn’t wake me up when he had come to my place to give me his pen-drive. He said that I was the one who asked him not to wake me if I were asleep. He even showed me the message I sent him. He read the message as: “Dude, I need ur pen-drive. Plz get it 2 me 2mro early in da mrng…jus in case if m asleep, ‘DONT’ wake me up. Ok.” He thought by “dn” I meant “dont”. Knowing that, I started laughing out loud because by “dn”, I actually meant “then”.

All this ended in a while and the journey to my college relieved me a bit. Everything went fine. I reached my college, met my team-mates and went straight to the seminar lab to show the latest module to my team-mates. I copied the contents of the pen-drive onto my college PC and started executing the code. To my utter shock, the code didn’t behave the way it did on my home PC. A lot of changes that I made to the code went missing. After a little amount of panic I realized that I had accidentally copied the wrong code onto the pen-drive. HOLY SHIT!!! This was the only thing that was running through my mind at that time. I felt like kicking my own ass. There was nothing I could do nor could my team-mates. We, in a jiffy, made some minor changes to hide the flaws in the code.

We really hoped that the external examiner would not find out those flaws. The ultimate time had come. It was our turn to present the project to the external examiner. Our seminar started and lasted for 45 minutes and everything went smooth. The external examiner didn’t notice the flaws. In turn, he liked our project and praised us. Once the seminar ended, we all felt relieved and I was very excited about it. Overall it was a memorable experience and I had learnt my lesson.

Things I learnt:

  • Never delay project work.
  • Never send ambiguous messages.