This is a note to myself and to anybody else reading this blog. These things have been helpful in college and also go a long way in helping others too. So I just thought of jotting them down.
- Document what you do: You always experiment, try out cool things everyday (they may not seem cool to you, but it maybe for others), just take some time out and make a note of that, write a blog post. Not because that would be show-off but because it will go a long way in inspiring and helping your juniors or any other person from outside your college as well. I can vouch for it because there have been many blogs from whom I have taken inspiration.
- Be passionate for engineering: Make things, create! Its the best way to have fun, when code that you had been hacking on runs, or the Arduino LED glows, the ecstasy is incomparable. At the end you will end up tinkering with a lot of things and a whole bunch of messy ideas in your head.
- Give back: You will always find yourself looking up answers on Google, Stack Overflow and the like. Take a moment after you solve your problem, share it with the world, answer a few questions on Stack Overflow, or on our group. Improve the community as a member, because if others hadn’t contributed you wouldn’t have found the answers.
- Open your eyes and ears: Look outside your world, there are a lot of great people to meet and find out. Keep yourself updated with the latest from the tech world. Read other blogs, HN, etc.
- Re-invent the wheel:You can go ahead and try to make a square wheel (doesn’t matter if you fail), the experience that you gain along the way will be what will be valuable to you. Don’t be afraid to re-implement something because it already exists – who knows, yours could be different or better?
- Find your specialty: That one thing that you are good at, do it often, iterate until you are good. You find yourself drawn to cool user-interfaces then just do HTML/CSS just don’t for Python because your friend is doing it. As it is stated in the Unix Philosophy – “Do one thing, do it well!”
Following points have been added by Rishi Ayyer, and I feel they will be an useful addition to this post.
- Travel: Because you need to get out of that comfortable armchair, with the comfortable food and sleep that you know will be there. Don’t worry, it’ll be there when you get back. But go and have an adventure. You’ll learn a lot more in just a few days roaming out in the world, from practical problems, to meeting people who “do” in the real world.
- Be versatile: Yes, it’s good to have a specialty. It’s great if you’re a master at it too. But be open to other aspects, other interests. Always approach situations with an open mind, and an eager heart. Learn to be interested in various aspects of a particular thing. One-dimensional views can be misleading, and won’t help you build a “system” or “product”. At the end of the day, that’s the aim.
- Learn to code: It’s my greatest regret. And I know that’s it’s indispensable today. (Though I myself agree somewhat with this, but still I prefer my own #6)
- Take charge of your life: Don’t let life happen to you. Make life happen. To quote Marley, “Live the life you love. Love the life you live.”
PS: These viewpoints are purely personal and in case you have something to say, please leave a comment.