Tuning and optimizations…

Written on 2:51 AM by Tushar

Do you think that tuning and optimizations are useful only while writing solid and efficient code?

-You daily spend at least 10 hours in the lab apart from 3 to 4 hours of classes and practically you don’t find time to talk on phone with your dear ones. You realize that one way walk to the university takes 20 minutes and you cannot study during that time. Ideally you can but then your life officially sucks. So you use that time to make calls. Everybody is happy. You are using your time effectively.

On weekends you set aside an hour or two to make calls to most of your friends and that is the best way to remain sane.

- Indian Graduate Student Association arranges a fun evening with games, dinner and screening of the movie Sholey. The idea sounds really great and you wanna go but you have a Programming Languages homework due so you show up only for dinner.

- Indian movie club at Hopkins ‘Tarang’ screens a movie every Saturday night. It has been 4 weeks now and you have managed to watch only one movie for an hour.

- You _have_ to stock up foods for at least a fortnight as it is difficult to find an hour to go to the grocery store.

- Even though you get a lot of fresh vegetables from the grocery store and you know that it is harmful to eat ready to cook stuff regularly due to its high sodium contents you end up having maggi or likes for the dinner coz you don’t have time to cook as you have to rush to the lab as early as possible.

- You don’t mind spending the night in the lab. Sleeping on two chairs is not really fun but once you get used to it it’s not bad either.

- You figure out that there are dishes in the grad lounge apart from free coffee and the kitchen the grad lounge is cleaner than the one at your place. In short you can live there. So you carry the fork so that you can eat food there sipping (harmful) cold drinks and reading (free)(mostly techi) magazines (though you would have preferred to read any movie gossip magazine as that is the only way you will discover (mostly a month or two later) that Oscars got over or Abhishek and Aishwarya got engaged )

- You figure out that the OS project is due on Sunday and you have four days to go so tonight might be the optimal choice for writing a blog else you know that you never will.

Welcome to grad life my friend!

Love(snow) is in the air…

Written on 7:44 PM by Tushar

Happy Valentine’s day to one and all!


When I was a kid I used to collect cartoon strips of a series called Love is… by Kim Casali. I still have a note book full of these strips in some corner of my room back in India. It was one of my prized possessions. I was delighted to see that those strips are now available as a book…a must have!

What did I do last year on the V’day ? :

Bought a book by (Robert) Love :P…So geeky!

What did I do today?:

Slept for the whole day at home… Snow storm warning were issued yesterday night. I left for the lab at 8pm and decided to stay there at night. In the morning when I was about to go for my classes I came to know that JHU is closed due to heavy snowfall! On my way back I could see it was snow every where. It was so beautiful. Had planned to go back and click the pics of JHU campus today but slept for the whole day instead. Seems a large portion of east coast is hit by snow storm. Minu sent some amazing pics. Have a look!

Fortune 100

Written on 12:42 PM by Tushar

Check out '100 best companies to work for 2007' !
Interesting to see that even though Google tops the list there are only around 10 'pure' software companies in the list. By 'pure' I mean excluding the financial companies which happen to have pretty big software divisions.

Choose the one you wanna work for!....TODAY!!
Doesn't that sound like a crappy TV commercial:) ?

Life is good…

Written on 2:01 PM by Tushar

It is Sunday and I am sitting in my office working on my stuff(It is not really as boring at it sounds!). Had called mom and jiji to get the update of what’s happening back home. Had been to a wonderful get together last night at Varun’s place. I had asked him to arrange some sort of gathering and around 20 desis turned up for the potluck. We had a helluva time from 830pm to 2am (That is when I left the party went on even further) watching ‘Darwaza Band Rakho’, having delicious food, playing antakashari, playfully ragging the Indian newcomers to Hopkins and dancing to the tunes of catchy hindi songs…Will cherish those memories till the spring break as we may not get an opportunity to arrange another one before that coz it’s Hopkins baby! It wont give you time to breathe once the semester begins.

In the spring semester I am taking Operating Systems, Information retrieval and Web agents, Programming Languages and auditing Transaction processing systems. Will also do an independent study with Randal on a topic in storage or file systems. Havent given much to thought to it till now.

Operating systems-

Unfortunately Shap is on sabbatical now and his PhD students are taking the course. I am enjoying it a lot coz it will be really heavy on implementation of concepts. My RA work is really paying me off now.

Information retrieval and Web agents-

David Yarowsky is good at what he does and this course is really good to learn about the vast field of natural language processing, info retrieval, machine learning, info extraction…I am happy that I wont graduate without taking a spoonful of knowledge in this exciting field.

Programming languages-

This is the second time I am taking a class under Scott. The course is really good and teaches the type system of programming languages. Scott’s website is really informative and his course is really well structured. I had enjoyed taking the course in my undergrad and hope to learn more this time.

Transaction processing systems-

Randal simply rocks! The course teaches how to go about implementing a transaction processing system including paging, locking etc and also deals with advanced database concepts such as query optimization etc. Randal’s lectures are very informative and he touches variety of topics while teaching. I will be auditing this one so that I can concentrate more on my research work this semester.

There is plenty to learn this sem and I am really looking forward to it.

Some really exciting things are gonna take place in Feb and watch out this space for more…

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