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Showing posts from October, 2012

Startup Weekend : From Participant to Organizer

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The last one year has been a very exciting year for me in terms of learning and growing. In September 2011 I signed up as a participant for Startup Weekend the first time it was conducted in Hyderabad and since then I have volunteered at Startup Weekend events in Mumbai, Bangalore and Delhi and have become an organizer at Startup Weekend Hyderabad and we are about to conduct the third event in the city which is going to be part of the Global Startup Battle. What is it about Startup Weekend?  It all starts off with the event itself - the event is in a format that facilitates one to learn in multiple levels. One learns from the speakers, getting inspired by them from what they have achieved and then from the mentors who guide and advice the participants until their ideas start to make good business sense and finally the participants who come from very diverse backgrounds with whom relationships form that carry on well past the event. The event itself is very unstructured with a gre

Engineering education in Andhra Pradesh

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Way back in 1993 when I wrote EAMCET, the common entrance test for engineering one was considered brilliant if they managed to get a seat. In that year there were less than 9000 engineering seats and it was easier to get a seat in Karnataka than it was to get one in AP, but the colleges in AP were much more popular and better and everyone wanted a seat here. Fast forward to 2012, there are 340000 engineering seats and the funny part is that not more than 220000 write the entrance exams for these seats thus making the entrance exam just a farce as anyone who wants to get a seat will get one irrespective of the marks they get in the exam. Let us look how the increase of seats has been through the years Year   No. of colleges No. of seats Vacant Seats 1994 – 1995 32 9335 0 1995 – 1996 37 10155 0 1996 – 1997 37 10455 0 1997 – 1998 57 14155 0 1998 – 1999 89 19773 0 1999 – 2000 102

Programmers are getting younger and younger

I came across this TED talk today by Thomas Suarez, a 12-year-old app developer that develops apps for the ipod, ipad and iphone. In Startup Weekend Delhi I met with Evan Luthra who describes himself as a Student, President, CEO, Founder, Director, Keynote Speaker, Blogger & More. Evan is just 17 years old and he has his own company that designs and sells apps. We are seeing more and more students starting to challenge the status quo. They are challenging the tried and tested way of the 10+2+4 or the 10+2+3+3 education system. There is a lot of encouragement that they get to pursue their passions. There is so much information out there to help them learn quickly. I was born and brought up in a small town in the coastal area of Andhra Pradesh and had my first taste of computers when I was 14 years old, courtesy my school. The school, bought 2 computers to teach Computer Science as part of the ICSE syllabus that had just introduced the subject as an optional subject for th

Small victories > Big encouragement

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As an entrepreneur one always goes through ups and downs and there are times you second guess yourself and wonder if you are really doing the right thing. There are little things that happen that boost your confidence and give you big time encouragement to forge ahead. These are small triumphs that give you this new energy to forge ahead. What I find important is to be able to break down things so that one can achieve these small victories that provide validation for what one is doing that gives you the motivation to keep going. A task not broken down keeps going on for a long time and looks so intimidating that it becomes very hard to keep one motivated right through the entire task.