Saturday, December 31, 2016

I wanted to write an EoY Review post last year like I did two years ago but I didn’t as I was too busy making sure 2016 was beginning with my most important goal for that year — overcoming my fear of coding and becoming a better programmer. 2016 has been a great year of personal learning and I want to celebrate its passing by documenting some of that learning and experiences.

But before that, some background from 2015.

2015: Back to School

The major turn of events in 2015 was the hurried decision to apply to Brown University early in Jan and their…


How to Learn

I spent two years in industry before going for a master’s degree. After being away from a traditional educational institution, it took me a whole semester to figure out how to learn effectively. How come my usual learning process, reliable enough to pass any exam in college, was not working anymore? If I knew about the science of learning back in college, I would not have taken any pride in not taking effective notes in classes or studying only a night before an exam. Neither would I have shied away from studying in groups and learning by teaching.

Time Management and Prioritization

Time is…


Thursday, October 15, 2009

It was this day, that I had waiting for for almost a month now. Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam visiting the campus of National Institute of Technology Calicut, my college.

And, it was just last night and this morning, that I was so excited to get his one glimpse in front of my eyes. Everything in the campus seemed so good yesterday, with all the decorations, lighting and preparations in Open Air Theatre (OAT) and near Aryabhatta Hall.

I woke up early, despite of having no classes today. Nobody in the hostel seemed to be excited about…


I have been reading Bjarne Stroustrup’s A Tour of C++ and the language feels like a totally new language since my last project in C++ which was years ago. Since, (re-)learning a language requires both reading and writing code, I decided to work through some exercises on Exercism.

For C++, Exercism encourages a test-driven approach to solving problems and requires some tooling support (CMake) to focus on solving the problem instead of wasting time on setting up a build system for each exercise. I wasn’t familiar with either.

For both test-driven development (TDD) basics and familiarizing myself with CMake, I…


Deepak Malani provides insight into how, through various stages of his academic and professional life, he turned into an innovator. Quoting him:

Recently, I was speaking to first-year undergraduate students at IIT Bombay. The students were set to start their first major hands-on learning journey through summer projects in campus. I compiled my learnings through my engineering projects since undergraduate days. This helped me connect the dots, in retrospect.

~24 mins, watch along with the slides below

There are many lessons in his talk for engineering students. Specifically, the definition of Engineering from Wikipedia is worth pondering over:

“Engineering is the application of
scientific, economic, social, and practical knowledge
in order to
invent, design, build, maintain, research, and improve
structures, machines, devices, systems, materials and processes.”


I happen to be surrounded by a lot of gadgets lately. One of them is a pretty Moto 360, one of the early Android Wear watches:

and another a MacBook Air (PlatiniumAir) which is about to celebrate its first anniversary:

This morning while walking-reading in my room, I had iTunes on the MacBook playing some tracks from one of the auto-generated Apple Music playlists. Now, it’s fairly easy to flick away mobile (lying away on my desk) notifications using my watch and not interrupt my reading for more than a couple seconds. But it was annoying to go back to…


Just read a Jeffrey Archer work for the first time, a story titled “Caste-Off” from his short story collection “And Thereby Hangs a Tale”.

Cover Image from Goodreads

The book was gifted by a junior last year and I had avoided reading it since, for I generally avoid reading fiction unless it is Sci-Fi. Moreover, I had never read Archer before and did not want to start with one of his less acclaimed works.

While sorting through the physical books from my collection this evening, I ended up reading about this book on the Internet and got intrigued enough to read at least one…


If you are like me who likes their media collection well organized, you might have found it difficult to sift through a huge but unorganized collection of movies that you retrieve from a friend’s external hard disk. I spent couple of hours yesterday doing the same for my brother’s collection; here are some tools that I found useful:

Kodi

This one probably needs no introduction if you are already familiar with XBMC (its old name) — one of the most popular and feature-rich media center around (also open source & cross-platform). I have been using XBMC/Kodi for about 4 years now…


Something interesting happened this morning which leads to existence of this post.

I had gone to visit a long time friend and mentor Amarjit at his home. It was unusual of him to not welcome me at the door himself. I soon learnt why — Deepak Malani was there!

Me, Deepak, Amarjit

I know Deepak for about 4–5 years now, mostly from stories told by seniors (of IEEE Glory Days) and from Amarjit himself. We have been in touch on the Internet on and off for about the same amount of time but had never gotten a chance to meet in person. …

Kartik Singhal

Hacker, Bibliophile, Cyclist. Concurrency, Systems & Programming Languages.

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