What you hope to learn in CS3216

Posted: August 11, 2013 in CS3216

The above is a beautiful Hindi (my mother tongue) song  from the movie ‘Lakshya’. The literal English translation of the ‘lakshya’ is ‘goal’. I think the song fits in perfectly with this post. (Maybe it can be Prof Colin‘s goal to learn Hindi and understand this song by the end of the semester  #justsaying)

Well, its the start of a new semester for the 7th time in my life. And I actually feel kind of sad that this will only be the second last time. I really wish I could spend my entire life in NUS. I love the people, the professors, the classes, the hackathons, the projects, etc.. But alas, all good things must come to an end. I do hope I can come back to NUS as a professor or stay on as a research assistant or PhD student, but that is not what this blog post is meant to talk about.

This semester, I am going to take CS3216. I had been looking forward to taking it since semester 1 when I saw Angad and Adhiraj taking it, but for some reason or the other, I kept postponing. I was either doing other project modules or finishing my UROP. This year is probably even worse since I am doing my FYP, but this was the last opportunity and so I decided to apply anyway and was delighted to receive Prof Colin’s welcome e-mail soon after.

My classes start tomorrow and as the first assignment, I have to complete this blog post enumerating what I wish to take out from CS3216. So, let me get started…

  1. Create software that will be useful to people. If I am able to achieve this goal, I would consider ‘Mission Accomplished’. By the way, ‘people’ also includes ‘me’. If the piece of software I create is useful to me and me alone, that will also count as success in my book. I do not care much about starting a business because I am not concerned about the money side of things. I just want to create something that has utility enough to be useful to at least one person and which I will want to work on once the course is over.
  2. Become good at making web applications. Maybe I could have replaced ‘web applications’ with ‘software’. But I did not, one part of the reason is that a web application is what I think I will most likely be making in this module. The second part is that web applications are what I have the least experience in making. I have never had to make one in school. Even in CS3217, my worthy teammates did the web side of things, while I worked on the iOS side. I have spent every summer till now in trying to do internships which are research oriented and so have also not got a chance to create web applications. I hope I will get a lot of experience and be successful in making the frontend and backend of web applications as part of this course.
  3. Develop the habit of blogging. I think this component of the course is really useful too. I have never been much of a blogger (I have been an annoying Facebook poster though). All but the last two posts in this blog were also written for another module, IS1103, which I took in semester 1. Blogs which explain programs or talk about how to fix errors are very useful to the community at large and also increase one’s reputation. I hope I will get into the habit of blogging through this course and retain that habit for the rest of my life.
  4. Learn to prioritize tasks. I hope that the stressful semester ahead will force me into doing this. I hope I will be able to leave the urge to make things perfect, learn to move on and do important things first.
  5. Become physically fit by the end of the semester. This is probably the only goal my mother wants me to achieve in life and this is the goal which I think is the most difficult. Actually, I have had this goal before every semester. I hope I can learn to care enough about my health to do physical exercise regularly and not eat unhealthy food.

There are other goals too, which I have from taking CS3216, but this blog post will become too long I do not want to share them publicly. If I do well in this module, I will share them. If not, I will edit this post to remove this para and pretend the above 5 goals were the only ones in my mind.


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