Archive for October, 2005


October 20, 2005

“How I spent my Birthday”

Hmm the heading is a bit cliched and instantly reminds me of my 7th grade English teacher.

I woke up as usual at 6 am. I got a phone call first from my Dad who is working at a charity hospital in Uttaranchal presently. Then my Mom and sis called from Muscat. After that I got an SMS greeting from my grandma who lives in a village (yeah!!! Talk about the IT revolution in India!!!).

Then I checked my mail, there were about 30 mails, most of them alerting me of a new entry in my Orkut scrapbook. I replied to the mail/scraps and by then it was time for the 8 ‘o clock class. Classes went on for five hours till 1 pm.

I came back, checked my mail to find even more mails. I got about a 100 mails, some directly wishing me, some alerting me of a scrap on orkut. A few people who I thought wouldn’t wish me, wished me and one or two did the reverse.

I got a few gifts in the evening…. wind chimes, a candle, a cover for my mobile and a nice carving. It really feels nice to receive gifts…. ten years ago I actually wished my parents would give me pocket money instead of gifts !! Now the idea seems so {can’t think of a suitable adjective} …. maybe its because I’m (somewhat) financially independent and so knowing that someone cares for you is more important than $$.

I finally had dinner at a Prof’s house. The dinner was nice and thanks to that, I managed to “conveniently” avoid giving any dinner-treats 😀


October 13, 2005

Well…about my Bangalore trip… I guess I’ll initially describe what happened yesterday night/today morning and then start from the beginning.

Yesterday night, I boarded the Shram Shakti Express at NDLS and was traveling to Kanpur. I happened to be traveling in the First AC compartment where there are cubicles with cushioned seats arranged like in 2AC. There were only 7 people traveling in the 1AC compartment, and only one in my cubicle. He looked a bit familiar to me. It turned out that he was Dr SK Dube, the director of IIT Kharagpur. He was coming to (IIT) Kanpur for a meeting.

We talked for over an hour about various things… starting with how IITKgp was setup initially in Calcutta on 50 acres of land, after which it was shifted to the town of Kharagpur. We talked about various other things like the new JEE pattern, problems with the IITs today, like the shortage of faculty, the effect of LAN and festivals on the students, the MBA dual degree program at IITKgp, hostels, research output levels of the IITs, IISc and universities abroad.

He went on to describe a few incidents like…once when he was eating at Los Angeles with a colleague, the waiter asked them if they were from IITKgp and so, the waiter called the owner of the restaurant who happened to be from IITKgp too.

Anyway… in the end we went to sleep at about 1:30 am. The train reached Kanpur on time and we both took separate cars to the IITK campus.

Now back to the beginning. I left for Bangalore on 12th morning from the IITK campus at 4 am. I took a car to the station and boarded the Rajdhani to Delhi. It was my first time in a 1AC compartment and it was pretty comfortable. They served a typical English breakfast…two slices of toast, butter, jam and some cornflakes. The train reached Delhi 30 seconds early (which is less than than the least count of my perception of time).

I then took a prepaid taxi to IITD where I met Rohan, Priya. I went around campus with them , taking quite a few pics of the campus. They were all complaining about the latest CS project that their prof had given them. They took me to the insti roof from where one gets a good view of almost the whole campus. We then went to have lunch at a place called Rainbows, where we were joined by Aman. We had pizza and it was pretty tasty.

Then I left the IITD campus and went to the airport to catch my 5:30 pm Jet Airways flight. The flight had been delayed by an hour and a half so they provided some snacks at the airport. The plane took off on time, at 7 and I landed at Bangalore at 9:30 pm. There was a person from the Taj Residency waiting, who took me to the Taj.

I reached there at 10 pm, freshened up and went to have dinner after which I slept. I woke up early the next day and had a nice buffet-breakfast. I left for the Bell Labs along with Dr Lavakare and reached there at 10 am. I joined Poonam, Dr Lavakare, Dr Rajeev Rastogi (Executive Director of Bell Labs, Bangalore) and Mr Soum Mukherjee (Director – Marketing) and Jasmine in the conference room.

Rajeev stated with a presentation on Lucent/Bell Labs. They seemed to be involved to some extent in the Digital Gangetic Plain Project in collaboraton with IITK. After that, we went to see the labs. We were shown how a call is made on a CDMA based 3G system. The staff used a lot of acronyms, of which half I knew and another half of which most could be figured out from the context. They showed us the testing equipment including a fifth generation switching system.

After that we returned to the conference room and then they asked us about our experience during the Global Scholars Summit at New Jersey. After this we went to have lunch at a Chinese Hotel (I don’t remember the name but it was a four star one). The food there was realllllllly tasty (and proportionally expensive).

We finished eating at 3 am after which I was dropped back to the airport. I reached in time for my 4pm flight. The flight was on time. We landed in Delhi at 6:30 pm where I met my dad. We took a prepaid taxi to NDLS where we had dinner at Wimpy’s … a burger and fries. I got into the train at about 11pm and the first few paragraphs of this post describe what happened after that.


October 10, 2005

Last week I had my midsemester exams… three of them went good and two were not so good. So now I have a week of hols (to recover). Two days of the hols have passed by so far… I spend my time mostly watching movies/cycling around the campus.

Tomorrow (12th) early morning I’ll be going to Delhi by the 4:45 am Rajdhani. I hope to reach there at 10 am. I would spend a few hours with friends there and then catch the evening Jet Airways flight to Bangalore. I would be spending the night at the Taj Residency. The next day, I would have to go for a felicitation function/press conference organized by Lucent, after which I would fly back to Delhi and then return to Kanpur on 14th morning.

So presently, I’m (thinking of planning to do some) packing.