26 November 2007

This post might be useless!

Last week, I wrote a mail to my long time mentor. Actually I was suggesting him to ask the young students to read! To make them aware of the importance of reading. Students actually DO listen to him!

The reason was this - I just read some blogs of a few of my super-duper juniors! The language I found there was not really up to the mark.

I am talking about students who are doing their BTech at some prestigious college in Kerala (yes, the place where people claim to have great literacy rate!) Some of them have to really improve. I know, they are technically very sound, at the same time should know that non-technical stuff too is important.

I always wanted to read so much. But never had enough time to read what I wanted to read. I regret for not reading enough during my under-grad days. Actually I never cared enough during those times. At least I used to read quite a number of Malayalam books. :)

My first English book was when I was at IIT -- The Godfather! As the first book, I found it too long and was surprised by the explicit stuff! Later I knew, it was normal!

Then I have been through a few good books! Not always novels, some stuff which makes you think too. Reading is so much fun!

One good thing I have found in me is that I really don't differentiate technical books and non-technical books (old story). Now technical stuff is really getting tough! :)

So, back to reading - it is so much fun. Your language improves, you gain knowledge and start thinking different. And still, so many people who don't ever read even a few books in whole life! Yeah, their choice - what can I do?

Let me go and catch up with some reading!

Signing off, Sands.

PS: The ones who really read the post completely are the ones who have the habit of reading. The ones whom I wanted to read, wouldn't have read it as they are not interested in reading! Hence the post might be useless.

14 November 2007

Small mess up!

Just came from the class. When you have a set of students of which some of them are computer science graduates and some are civil engineering graduates, and you are teaching algorithm analysis - it could be a night mare. There are about 22 students.

The moment I write down something, the experts give out the answer. Then I tend to go fast, and the newcomers to comp-science would find it difficult! And the ones who already know the subject, they are frying me in the class. And once in a while, I am pretty good at messing up too.

Today, somehow, I swapped the names of selection sort and insertion sort. Just after I started, I realized the mistake. Immediately these guys started attacking me with in vigor. For like 2 minutes, I went pale and confused myself. Later I did it really coolly.

I guess, this is good. Next class, I will be wonderfully prepared. :)

Anyway, at the end, when I asked one of the guys, he told me that he understands more from my class than from the other teacher - and hence he comes only to my class!! (Isn't that delighting?)

Gotta go, signing off, Sands.

12 November 2007


Today I am somehow filled with lot of energy. May be because I am going to be terribly busy this week. Anyway good.

Last week, I got a new system here, at college. A dualcore 3.0GHz system with 2 GB RAM -- with Suse-10.3 installed. Not bad actually :). A new monitor too - which is a 24 inch widescreen from Samsung. I don't know, what great thing I am going to do with these. Do I really need this great stuff for checking emails, browsing and a little programming?

Anyway, the system is working wonderfully. [LG system, Samsung monitor, Logitech mouse and Cherry keyboard -- what a combination]

The thing which I am most happy about is the new keyboard. The old one was a little difficult. This one is really soft and feels good. And the keyboard is the only thing which is white in color!

Let me then get to my work.

Signing off, Sands.

10 November 2007

Short Updates

It is just a few days since I put the entry "How to educate them". Today, when I came home, I found a notice from the student-hostel-management, in my mailbox. Everyone in the hostel has got one such notice. It ran like this:

Dear Housing Residents,

In view of higher operating costs and i9n particular for ecological reasons, we ask that you make not of the following tips. In adopting them, you make a personal contribution to a more responsible use of resources and do your part to lowering the operating costs of your residency facility.

It was followed by a list of tips for saving water and electricity, and also instructions for separating the waste products. There was nothing new there. Something like, don't let the water be running while soaping/brushing, turn of the electric equipments while not using, etc.

I was pretty much surprised and was happy too. I reached my room and sent a "thanks for such a step" email to the hostel-management team. I also requested them to put some posters in the wings so as to remind the inmates always.

Otherwise, there is nothing special. The winter is already here. It is snowing right now. The temperature is 2 degrees above zero (feels like -5). The wind is howling, at a speed of 40km/hr. Very good time to lie in bed, read some book and fall into sleep. :)

Signing off, Sands.

5 November 2007

How to educate them?

A small anecdote first.

When I was staying at Balaji's room, after all my day's work, I used to lie in the bed and read for sometime. Once I become sleepy, I would just close the book, switch off the light and dive deep to sleep. The thing I'd hated most was getting up from there.

Unfortunately, on most of the nights, just when I switch off the light, through the small gap below the door, I'd see lights from the corridor. Cursing myself and the person who never bothered to switch off the light, I'd go and switch it off.

Many times, I had decided not to get up - what may come. Still, I'd be not able to stay and not switch off that light.
(The thing to notice here is that the lights in the corridor were actually sound/movement sensitive - when there is someone in the corridor, they turn on automatically. It was on top of this, they wanted to keep it burning all the time -- even during day time!)

Nothing has changed since then - except the place I live.

Every evening, from 6-11 whenever I go to the kitchen in my wing, I switch off a minimum of 3 lights. Anyone who's coming there first turns them on and never turns them off!

Many of the days, I'll have to do the same in the morning too. Since I am the one who gets up first in the wing, the burning lights mean that they were "on" all the night.

How can I educate my wing mates? Do you think some poster(s) can do the trick? If yes, please give me a few links to some good posters - against energy wastage and also for anti--global_warming.

I confess that I have a couple of lights in my room - I want my room to be very well lit. Especially during the winter times when the days are too short and also gloomy. Not all of them are power saving bulbs (they are way too costly for me right now).

At least I make sure that they are not in use when I am out. I make sure that my system is sleeping most of the time. I don't keep my heater on when I am not there.

It's already too late to take measures against all these. Educate your friends/family/neighbors everybody -- and yourself too.
Save energy -- save yourself. (My home in Kerala is in the tropics and it is expected to have about 5-10 degrees of temperature rise in a couple of decades there in the tropics. The majority of the readers of this blog should have to think of relocating themselves and their near&dear to some cooler place ... OR start rescuing the planet right now.)

Signing off, Sands.

I am just against wastage. If you need 100 bulbs burning in your room while you are reading, or if you want a car for transportation, go ahead do it. But make sure that those lights are off when you are away and also the car is in perfect condition so that there is no wastage.