Archive for January, 2007

A College Story…

Applying to colleges has just about gotten over for me because American Universities iare the only colleges that I’ve applied to until now; Indian colleges hold their entrance exams during March and April. So, basically applying to MIT, Stanford, Cornell, Columbia and Penn has been like a kick in the backside to tell me GET GOING!!!

Many people dread filling out college applications (it’s all over the MIT blogs btw), but I looked at it as an opportunity to get to know myself better. Perhaps, filling out those applications would allow me to look deep inside my being and discover who I truly am. Well, I approached my application to all the Universities with this deep philosophical outlook and soon enough, I realized that I was completely wrong. Really really wrong. Like, imagine somebody who is as wrong as they could possibly be. That was me, only more wrong. This is not to say that my college application process wasn’t educational, it just had nothing to do with learning about who I truly am. Allow me to share some of the things I did learn though! Maybe you learned some of these?

  • I now know how many hours are in a week and how many weeks are in a year (and how many seconds it takes for a PDF file to open on FireFox vis-a-vis IE)
  • I learned how big 5’x18′ ( or whatever the measurement is) envelopes REALLY are
  • I know how long 500 words looks on paper
  • I learned where both of my parents went to college, what their degrees were, and when they graduated
  • I know my SAT scores by heart
  • I learned that you can type as much as you want on the online application as long as you don’t mind reading the preview app with a magnifying glass
  • The Common App really is as scary as they say it is
  • I now remember what competitions I took part in , what I won in them, and whether they were honors or not.
  • I became proficient at downloading and reading PDFs.
  • I know everybody on the admissions committee on a first name basis, but I haven’t actually met them.
  • How DHL actually takes packages and delivers them, and how I can track their progress (and even find out if the driver stopped off for a cup of coffee while delivering my apps!)

Perhaps you learned all, or none of these things (I’m assuming YOU applied to a college as well right?). Perhaps your college application process was completely different than mine. All I know is that I know a bunch of stuff now that I never thought I’d ever need to know, and I imagine attending college will be a similar experience. Go into it expecting one thing and come out with something completely different.

Right now, though, it’s all about unevenly bitten fingernails, stained coffee mugs left all over the house while studying at unearthly hours, extra stationary envelopes, gluesticks, correction pens – to mail applications jussssssssst before the deadline and remembering to breathe every once in a while. I’ve had nightmares about turning up late for my SATs, public rejections from colleges made super-embarrassing, not getting admitted anywhere, etc. My application has been the only thing on my mind for the past two months or so – and what makes it scarier is how badly you want to get in but knowing everybody else wants it just as badly and is just as good… phew!!!

But it’s also nice in some ways ’cause you realize you’re taking your life into your own hands – deciding what you want, what you need and how you’re going to get it. When you’re writing essays about yourself you learn stuff about yourself that you really did not pay attention to before. Hmmm… I’m trying to write more about why it’s good… but… er… uh… until I get in anywhere, that’s all I can manage. 🙂

But perhaps, the most amazing outcome of all this is that I have learnt the true power of this wonder invention called the Internet. I’ve reviewed and put a browser (FireFox) through it’s paces, made new friends on another continent, met their friends, participated in a treasure hunt, used MIT’s computer resources, discovered just what all you can do using Yahoo! Messenger/AIM and MUCH MUCH more !

Trust me, this is a process I may not want to particularly go through again, but it’s been brilliant while it lasted, and I wouldn’t have wanted to do it any other way ! It’s been a dream I’ve always had ever since I was a kid, and perhaps, come March, it will become a dream that was worth chasing !

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January 28, 2007 at 1:04 pm 7 comments

A College Story…

Applying to colleges has just about gotten over for me because American Universities iare the only colleges that I’ve applied to until now; Indian colleges hold their entrance exams during March and April. So, basically applying to MIT, Stanford, Cornell, Columbia and Penn has been like a kick in the backside to tell me GET GOING!!!

Many people dread filling out college applications (it’s all over the MIT blogs btw), but I looked at it as an opportunity to get to know myself better. Perhaps, filling out those applications would allow me to look deep inside my being and discover who I truly am. Well, I approached my application to all the Universities with this deep philosophical outlook and soon enough, I realized that I was completely wrong. Really really wrong. Like, imagine somebody who is as wrong as they could possibly be. That was me, only more wrong. This is not to say that my college application process wasn’t educational, it just had nothing to do with learning about who I truly am. Allow me to share some of the things I did learn though! Maybe you learned some of these?

  • I now know how many hours are in a week and how many weeks are in a year (and how many seconds it takes for a PDF file to open on FireFox vis-a-vis IE)
  • I learned how big 5’x18′ ( or whatever the measurement is) envelopes REALLY are
  • I know how long 500 words looks on paper
  • I learned where both of my parents went to college, what their degrees were, and when they graduated
  • I know my SAT scores by heart
  • I learned that you can type as much as you want on the online application as long as you don’t mind reading the preview app with a magnifying glass
  • The Common App really is as scary as they say it is
  • I now remember what competitions I took part in , what I won in them, and whether they were honors or not.
  • I became proficient at downloading and reading PDFs.
  • I know everybody on the admissions committee on a first name basis, but I haven’t actually met them.
  • How DHL actually takes packages and delivers them, and how I can track their progress (and even find out if the driver stopped off for a cup of coffee while delivering my apps!)

Perhaps you learned all, or none of these things (I’m assuming YOU applied to a college as well right?). Perhaps your college application process was completely different than mine. All I know is that I know a bunch of stuff now that I never thought I’d ever need to know, and I imagine attending college will be a similar experience. Go into it expecting one thing and come out with something completely different.

Right now, though, it’s all about unevenly bitten fingernails, stained coffee mugs left all over the house while studying at unearthly hours, extra stationary envelopes, gluesticks, correction pens – to mail applications jussssssssst before the deadline and remembering to breathe every once in a while. I’ve had nightmares about turning up late for my SATs, public rejections from colleges made super-embarrassing, not getting admitted anywhere, etc. My application has been the only thing on my mind for the past two months or so – and what makes it scarier is how badly you want to get in but knowing everybody else wants it just as badly and is just as good… phew!!!

But it’s also nice in some ways ’cause you realize you’re taking your life into your own hands – deciding what you want, what you need and how you’re going to get it. When you’re writing essays about yourself you learn stuff about yourself that you really did not pay attention to before. Hmmm… I’m trying to write more about why it’s good… but… er… uh… until I get in anywhere, that’s all I can manage. 🙂

But perhaps, the most amazing outcome of all this is that I have learnt the true power of this wonder invention called the Internet. I’ve reviewed and put a browser (FireFox) through it’s paces, made new friends on another continent, met their friends, participated in a treasure hunt, used MIT’s computer resources, discovered just what all you can do using Yahoo! Messenger/AIM and MUCH MUCH more !

Trust me, this is a process I may not want to particularly go through again, but it’s been brilliant while it lasted, and I wouldn’t have wanted to do it any other way ! It’s been a dream I’ve always had ever since I was a kid, and perhaps, come March, it will become a dream that was worth chasing !

January 28, 2007 at 7:55 am 7 comments

Everyone likes a math joke !

Alright, I just thought it would be appropriate to inject some humour in here, so since the math exam is coming up, I thought everyone would like some math jokes ! Some of the more ‘incredible’ ones I saw on the various MIT blogs, and some of them have been forwarded to me by people at MIT…

Should put a smile on your face for sure !
I love this one !

and now, some one liners (and more liners) that I simply couldn’t pass up !

“A biologist, a physicist, and a mathematician were sitting in a street café watching the crowd. Across the street they saw a man and a woman entering a building. Ten minutes later they reappeared together with a third person. “They have multiplied,” said the biologist. “Oh no, an error in measurement,” the physicist sighed. “If exactly one person enters the building now, it will be empty again,” the mathematician concluded.”

“If I were an enzyme I’d be DNA helicase so I could unzip your genes.” (ok, this is not exactly math)

“A mathematician is someone who thinks that if there are supposed to be three people in a room and five walk out, then two must enter the room in order for it to be empty.”

“I Wish I Were Your Derivative So I Could Lie Tangent To Your Curves!”

and probably the best one of them all…

An engineer, a physicist, and a mathematician are trying to set up a fenced-in area for some sheep, but they have a limited amount of building material. The engineer gets up first and makes a square fence with the material, reasoning that it’s a pretty good working solution. “No no,” says the physicist, “there’s a better way.” He takes the fence and makes a circular pen, showing how it encompasses the maximum possible space with the given material.

Then the mathematician speaks up: “No, no, there’s an even better way.” To the others’ amusement he proceeds to construct a little tiny fence around himself, then declares:

“I define myself to be on the outside.”

….

Two mathematicians are in a restaurant, bemoaning the fact that the general public knows so little about mathematics. One is totally pessimistic, but the other thinks there’s some hope.

Eventually the pessimist goes to the bathroom and while he’s gone, the optimist brings over the waitress, who’s a vacant-eyed blonde (oops! maybe this is a blonde joke). He hands her $10 and says, “When my friend comes back, I’ll call you to the table, and I’ll ask you a question. Just answer ‘log x’ and there’s another $10 in it for you.”

The friend returns, and the guy says, “You know, I think the general public DOES know more math than you think. I’ll bet you $100 that the blonde waitress can integrate 1/x.” Of course the other guy accepts, the waitress is brought over, and she’s asked, “What is the integral of 1/x?”

She answers, “log x”, then pauses, and adds, “plus an arbitrary constant.”

….. and that concludes a very humorous post.. now, get back to your books… we’ve got an exam on saturday **whooooopppieeeeee**

P.S. : tell me which ones you liked the best, and why don’t you try to come up with some ?

January 25, 2007 at 12:07 pm 2 comments

Everyone likes a math joke !

Alright, I just thought it would be appropriate to inject some humour in here, so since the math exam is coming up, I thought everyone would like some math jokes ! Some of the more ‘incredible’ ones I saw on the various MIT blogs, and some of them have been forwarded to me by people at MIT…

Should put a smile on your face for sure !
I love this one !

and now, some one liners (and more liners) that I simply couldn’t pass up !

“A biologist, a physicist, and a mathematician were sitting in a street café watching the crowd. Across the street they saw a man and a woman entering a building. Ten minutes later they reappeared together with a third person. “They have multiplied,” said the biologist. “Oh no, an error in measurement,” the physicist sighed. “If exactly one person enters the building now, it will be empty again,” the mathematician concluded.”

“If I were an enzyme I’d be DNA helicase so I could unzip your genes.” (ok, this is not exactly math)

“A mathematician is someone who thinks that if there are supposed to be three people in a room and five walk out, then two must enter the room in order for it to be empty.”

“I Wish I Were Your Derivative So I Could Lie Tangent To Your Curves!”

and probably the best one of them all…

An engineer, a physicist, and a mathematician are trying to set up a fenced-in area for some sheep, but they have a limited amount of building material. The engineer gets up first and makes a square fence with the material, reasoning that it’s a pretty good working solution. “No no,” says the physicist, “there’s a better way.” He takes the fence and makes a circular pen, showing how it encompasses the maximum possible space with the given material.

Then the mathematician speaks up: “No, no, there’s an even better way.” To the others’ amusement he proceeds to construct a little tiny fence around himself, then declares:

“I define myself to be on the outside.”

….

Two mathematicians are in a restaurant, bemoaning the fact that the general public knows so little about mathematics. One is totally pessimistic, but the other thinks there’s some hope.

Eventually the pessimist goes to the bathroom and while he’s gone, the optimist brings over the waitress, who’s a vacant-eyed blonde (oops! maybe this is a blonde joke). He hands her $10 and says, “When my friend comes back, I’ll call you to the table, and I’ll ask you a question. Just answer ‘log x’ and there’s another $10 in it for you.”

The friend returns, and the guy says, “You know, I think the general public DOES know more math than you think. I’ll bet you $100 that the blonde waitress can integrate 1/x.” Of course the other guy accepts, the waitress is brought over, and she’s asked, “What is the integral of 1/x?”

She answers, “log x”, then pauses, and adds, “plus an arbitrary constant.”

….. and that concludes a very humorous post.. now, get back to your books… we’ve got an exam on saturday **whooooopppieeeeee**

P.S. : tell me which ones you liked the best, and why don’t you try to come up with some ?

January 25, 2007 at 6:58 am 2 comments

The War of The … Cars ?

Hey! The first post of a shiny new year, that promises, among many other things, a profusion of exams for me **yippee!!**

So I decided to liven things here a bit, and the theme is obviously cars, especially since all news channels in India are busy asking viewers to vote/SMS/shout out their picks for the Car/Bike/Bullock-Cart of the Year honour..

Apparently, this frenzy ocurred elsewhere in the world as well, and some ad-makers are having fun as well ! Take a look below (if only car ads here were as good!)

Here’s what started it all off..

=) !

January 21, 2007 at 8:44 pm 4 comments

The War of The … Cars ?

Hey! The first post of a shiny new year, that promises, among many other things, a profusion of exams for me **yippee!!**

So I decided to liven things here a bit, and the theme is obviously cars, especially since all news channels in India are busy asking viewers to vote/SMS/shout out their picks for the Car/Bike/Bullock-Cart of the Year honour..

Apparently, this frenzy ocurred elsewhere in the world as well, and some ad-makers are having fun as well ! Take a look below (if only car ads here were as good!)

Here’s what started it all off..

=) !

January 21, 2007 at 3:35 pm 4 comments


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