Wednesday, March 31, 2010

IIM Ahmedabad interview

14th March 2010, IIFT Delhi

Morning 8:45 exactly around 28 call getters were divided into 4 panels .Then we were called in for writing our essays.

In ten minutes we were supposed to write an essay on "Is banning politicians with criminal records from contesting election violation of their rights?". At first I felt it was a bouncer, so I only had two choices, either duck down and give up or hook. I could not have played a defensive shot. It was a bouncer because I had to be sure that I don't mention any random political proper nouns in the essay which i could be questioned upon later in the interview. so very carefully i put forward two points, in a fairly structured way.
Firstly, that in india politicians are looked upon as leaders, and there is a need of immaculate integrity at the top.Secondly, if thousands of citizens' rights are at stake, we can forgo a chance of violating one politician's rights and if he is a true servant, he won't mind it. I thought the essay was fairly above average.

then after quite a long wait, i was called in for the interview. I was 5th.

Let me introduce the panels.
P1: an old professor, looked very systematic and rules driven
P2: a young prof. who did not speak much (and spoke nothing looking at me)

P1: So, you are doing Electrical Engineering. Is Electrical and Electronics same?
Me: Sir, in our college, there is only an Electrical Engineering as a major, but it has 4 streams we can choose from. There is telecommunications, VLSI, Power and automation.

P1: So what is your stream?
Me: Mine is VLSI (I was frightened now coz I knew nothing more than the full form of VLSI)

P1: Very Large Scale Integration ha! What is the difference between LSI and VLSI?
Me: The difference is in the density of transistors per unit area. VLSI works with very high density as compared to LSI

P1: So what is this trnasistor?
Me: I explained what it is and how and where it is used in both analog and digital domain

P1: How is it represented?
Me: Answered

P1:So how many transistors are there on this Pentium chip?
Me: Order of a million sir. But intel is coming up with a new chip named Gulf Town with a billion transistors

P1: OK. You talked about area. What is area of a circle?
Me: (I was surprised by the question and said hesitantly) sir, pi into r square?

P1: so how is it derived?
Me: (now its more like it)told him pi is experimentally calculated as circumference by diameter and derived the area by integrating a sector's area

P1: (somewhere he got confused or appeared to be and finally agreed that it was ok. I did not know why he did that)so why did you take sin d theta as d theta?
Me: at small angles sine theta is approx theta

P1: so is area of circle an approx formula
Me: no and explained why calculus is accurate and not approx...also mentioned sine law ...

P2: So you have been in Delhi for 4 years. you know about common wealth games?
Me: yes sir later this year.

P2: why are they played and why are they named so?
Me: CW nations are originally the British colonies. CWG are a good way to develop relations...blah blah

P2: is it worth spending so much on them?
Me: gave fundas on image of india, foreign money coming in, long term investment (i think i missed infrastructure development which he wanted to hear)

P2:So, if the money is directly given to orissa, their problems will be solved.can hosting CWG solve these problems
Me: gave random fundas

P2: OK.there is an uneasiness on why bankers are given bonuses. Why do you think it is?
Me: Gave fundas on recession and contrast

P2: even reliance people get so much money. why no easiness there? why only ankers?
Me: fundas of stereotype of bankers, and how they play wwith others' money

P2: (somehow managed to confuse me completely ) by comparing Reliance and Bankers (and either deliberately or not he was speaking in a very weird way, not looking at me while speaking and speaking in what cannot be called a clear voice)

Me: okay sir they are one and the same

P2: tell me something about railway budget
Me: (did not know enough so thought the best option was) not much aware about it sir.

P2: what do you know about green coal?
Me: (now surely he was testing me)it sounds like environmentally efficient coal, but i have not heard about it

P2: In delhi, what are the companies involved in electricity and energy sector?
Me: the companies are basically divided into Gencos, transcos and distribution companies.

P2: (interrupting) so what do you think, this triversification helped. what is the situation in delhi?
Me:I think, this move of triversificationis a move towards ideal working of things. it helps small players to enter independentlyinto any allows sharing of grid etc. in delhi the prices have not gone up, though they have also not gone down as expeced. But, i think we should give it time and it would work out eventually.

P1 and P2: Ok, thank you.

Me: (stood up and realised that i was not at all asked about my hobbies. My strengths are not even talked about. So what i did next was a gamble and i am still not sure whether i should have done that. but i had to take a decision then and i did take one without faltering)I would have liked if you had asked me about my hobbies sir (and handed over my file to P1. This file had a collection of the paintings and structures that i have made)

P1 looked at it very disinterestingly, though I explained each of my unconventional paintings (3d art, rubik's cube wall, took the opportunity to mention that i am ranked 16th in india for speedsolving rubik's cube, charcoal painting, ambigrams etc.) P2 got interested somewhere in between and offered me a chair. I sat down. P2 took the file and started enjoying it, but P1 was keen on sending me out."Ok thank you" he said and handed me a toffee.

Now people ask how did the interview go? Please comment!

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Friday, March 19, 2010

About balance

Given time...things evolve, become better, problems solve themselves (or reach a point where they become irrelevant). All this at a holistic view, obviously.
This makes me wonder, isn't it a proof that the final state , is that of balance and stability. Though its proven that entropy is increasing, can't we see it in a way that system is reaching a state of homogenization.

Let me write an example or two: when a container of a gas (say oxygen cylinder) is opened, we see that gas rushes out and spreads everywhere and we say that overall entropy of the universe has increased. But isn't it also a valid perspective , that the ultimate stable state of the universe is complete homogenization, not sharp categorization , but homogenization which the gas is trying to achieve by spreading. If we let all such gases let loose, we will have each and every gas present everywhere. there would be no way to identify one space in the universe from another.

Isn't that the ideal state of a society too? The state of complete equality.

We have a good example of Wikipedia, that can be told here. Wikipedia is complete chaos, anybody can put in anything, anybody can read anything. No categorization whatsoever. Is it really a bad state to be in.

the point that i want to make here is that chaos is egalitarian, complete chaos more so and if increasing chaos is a natural arrow of time, don't worry we are moving towards the ultimate balance .

Friday, March 5, 2010

loved it! i want to be the one to have written it :)

““The thing about performance is, even if it’s only an illusion, it’s the celebration of the fact that we do contain within ourselves infinite possibilities.””


Daniel Day Lewis