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Archive for the ‘Imagine Cup’ Category

For all those who wanted to know, we didn’t make it to National Finals of the Imagine Cup this year.

Now, unfortunately (or fortunately) the BE Project that we guys were doing and our IC submission was one and the same thing (for the sake of our sanities) – so atleast we will be seeing this thing through (hopefully)

Our theme and ideas were kept somewhat hushed up (which feels kinda stupid now) but anyways, will be letting the cat out of the bag soon enough.

In other news, came back from an awesome two day picnic to Nagaon (which is about 8 odd kms from Alibaug) and it was awesome fun. Will be posting pictures of the trip soon.

Perhaps the last with the guys from college – everything went off nicely and everybody had loads of fun.

For starters, here are a couple of images that I took on the beach …

Low tide at the Alibaug beach at sunset – small kid with his dad

A family of four moving towards the Alibaug fort which is accessible by foot during low tides

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After the entire experience … getting stuck in Bombay, losing all hope of making it … then finally making it … then coming to know what standards exist ( aka not winning the thing ) … we finally made it back home yesterday …

It was quite an experience …

While coming back, we had to get our flights changed to Delhi, as none of the Thai planes were landing in Mumbai …

Microsoft India, then booked our tickets from Delhi to Pune …
They really took great care of us … made our lives so much easier …
If it wasn’t for their support in India … we’d probably have never made it …
And if it wasn’t for the ADE team in Japan, we’d probably have starved to death … I’m serious :)
Thanks you guys :)

Anyways, attended the first day of college today …
It has been raining pretty bad in Pune too … comparing to Pune standards …
All the roads have taken a bad beating … so it’s now officially very hazardous to venture out in your vehicle …

The task of avoiding the craters and also not getting muck covered at the end of the ride, is just too much to do …
And, when it rains … there is a layer of water everywhere … which makes detecting the depth of the potholes … I mean the craters … that much harder …

I’m happy that we’re back to college and life has ( sort of ) become normal again …
We have our BE Seminars and Projects to do this year … so expecting stuff to be a lil more on the wild side …

On top of that, results are due very soon … which might be the topping on the bad luck of things happening …

One thing to look forward to this year, are shorter college timings …
College gets off at 2:30 now … yay !!!
Plus, Saturday is holiday … and on a couple of days, we’re off by 12:30 itself …
So, this is atleast some good news :)

Will write more later …
Adios !

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I think, and hope that this is the last blog of this trip from Japan …
We had an awesome time … and Japan is a great place …

I really liked the place, the people and the culture … and got to learn a lot from this place and this entire event …
Only the language and the food was kind of a problem … other than that, everything was perfect …

Today was a tiring day …
From morning, we were at the conference hall and after all the prize distribution ceremonies, had the flag exchanging stuff and all …
It was all fun …

It turns out, my predictions were almost right …
I got all the three teams right … but the order got mixed up …

In the software design, Russia came first … Followed by Greece and then China ..

In the short film category, our India team came second and the Mexico team won the event …
The Canadian “Thoughtpulse” team came third …

If you would like to know what each of these teams ( in the software design ) did in more detail, you can click here.

Night time, we had a fireworks display …
Today was Japan day ( I think .. ) and all the streets were and the entire harbour was filled with Japanese in Kimonos and traditional dresses …

All the roads were closed and all the people were on foot …
I have never seen so many Japanese at a time … the whole harbour side was jam packed like a rock concert …

We got a decent show from the convention center …

Anyways, tomorrow we have to catch a flight at 11:00 am and have to apparently leave the place by the 5:30 bus … as the ride to the Tokyo Airport is 2 hours long and we need to go and check there whether our flight will actually take off …

We are supposed to land in Mumbai … and all the news that we’re getting here is bad …
So, we’re trying to get to Delhi and then take a flight to Pune from there …

I hope everything works out well in the end …

As always … some more pictures of the trip …

Some shots from the fireworks show … Not at all good …

I got 2 mediocre shots after clicking about 40 odd or something …
Didnt have a tripod and impossible to do without one…

The big Japanese rush I was talking about … All the roads were just full … of people …

Anoter fireworks shot … More decent than the previous one though …

The entire Indian Contingent … with the two teams who actually won something …
The Short Film and the business plan team …
Seen on the rightmost corner in black … is Morris Sim … the guy who started the Imagine Cup.

Lots of other dignitaries and Japanese organisers also seen in the shot …

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Today was more of a chilled out day … with nothing much to do …
We went to the amusement park in the morning .. at about 12 and sat on the Ferris Wheel and the roller coaster … which I dont think I will be doing again for quite sometime now …

The Roller Coaster was uncomfortable and short and pretty scary … the Ferris wheel was more of a sight seeing thing than a joy ride …

Anyways … the rest of the day, went in watching all the short films which were submitted earlier by the participants and the 6 finalists of the Software Design Invitational … which were all pretty good …

The 6 finalists were : Slovenia, Brazil, Germany, Greece, China and Russia …

Russia had a really innovative app and China was scarily comprehensive …
Greece tackled a social issue of creating a speech to sign language and sign language to speech app for the hearing impaired …

The other team presentations were boring … and the Germany app was not that interesting …
Whatever they did, we could have implemented on our base system within a matter of a few hours … We had all the back end …

Only their presentation was slightly better …

My prediction is : Russia, China and Greece … lets see what happens tomorrow…

Note to myself : Next year, the presentation has to be awesome !!!

Anyways, we had this very sophisticated, formal, Japanese dinner in one of the poshest clubs in Japan …
Again, all of us could just not consume the food.
Whats with the food huh ?
I think rest all people from all over the world can still eat it … but we Indians just cannot …
We had an early Indian dinner before we went to the one at the club …

The dinner was supposed to be 5 course … and by the 2nd course … we had excused ourselves to go to the bathroom … and ditched the entire event … walking 25 mins to get back to the hotel …

Had two glasses of ( not so good ) starbuck’s cold coffee on the way back …
Anyways … next year’s Imagine Cup is going to be in India … so there is going to be a flag handing over ceremony and all of us are supposed to be on stage …
So, we have some sort of rehearsel at 10 am …

Thats all from me for now …

More pictures … :)

This was supposed to be our main course .. some boiled carrot and some seeweed look alike vegetable …
We had 9 types of cutlery out there !!! 9 types !!!

 

Yes … you can rub your eyes again … but this is Gaurang in formals !!!
Didn’t think that would happen before the world imploded in itself .. did ya ?

 

The Roller Coaster ride that we sat in … which solidifed my belief that these things are not for me …

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Okay …
First, the bad news …

We didn’t make it to the final 6 teams of the Software Design of the Imagine Cup …
It’s okay …

I think our presentation was the best we had given till now and the software was also working properly …
Only, the idea didnt click well with all the other international judges …

I’m happy for the fact that we atleast made it all the way here … and got to present our solution …
Would have been really depressed if we had got stuck up at Mumbai itself …

On the bright side, we still have one year to go … and besides, winning World two years in a row would be kinda hard anyways …
So, we’ll just win it next year … promise …

The other teams to make it were Japan, China, Greece, Slovenia, Russia and one another team which I don’t kinda remember now …

I seriously have no idea what the other solutions are … so, I have no basis for comparison … but we’ll come to know about it tomorrow …

Anyways, the entire ceremony was like an Academy Award dinner kinda thing …
We had round table reservations and all the short films were shown on the screen and we had a 9 course “Vegetarian” Japanese dinner … which honestly, I could not consume …
Nothing personal … but except the noodles, which I ate with a pair of chop sticks for the first time ( Yay !!! ), couldnt think of eating anything else …
Most of the veggie stuff … was … just bamboos … It tastest okay … no taste actually … something like boiled wood …

Anyways, as soon as the entire thing got over, we hit the Indian restaurant and packed some desi khana …

Thats all for tonight … just before I push off … picture of the day … clap, clap, clap !!!
We’ll hopefully be riding that thing tomorrow …

The giant ferris wheel … second in the world only to the one in London …
Comes with its own Roller Coaster …Me thinks, Microsoft India is going to pick up the tab on this ;)

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Hmm …

Day 2 at Japan … Yokohama …
Today is supposed to be a relaxing, chilled out, picnic day … and we’ll come to know whether we will be making it tomorrow or not for the finals …

We had a trip planned to the Sankeien Gardens at 9:30 …
We woke up at 9:20 … and made it to the bus departg for the gardens …

The gardens, as you would imagine were very beautiful …
Apparently, it is about 10,000 sq mts and was a private garden of a person … Sankei Hara …

They had also lunch there … but we vegi Indians had to fruits and salads and chocolate pastries.

We later came back and pigged out at a buffet at an Indian Restaurant …
The place is only about 5 mins walking from our Hotel …

We have a digital theatre program in the evening along with the preliminary results of the Software design invitationals …
In the digital theatre, they will be showing us all the entries from the Short Film category …

There is also a team from BITS Pilani among one of the 6 teams … so we will be rooting for them …

Check out some more pictures below ….

Until later then … :)

The Sankeien Gardens … Entrance

Lawns at the Garden

Our ADE ( Academic Development Evangelists ) taking a nap :)

More garden shots

We guys … and Tejas and Pratibha ( 1at and 3rd ) from the left … They’re Microsoft ADEs from India accompanying us for the trip

Bamboo plantations

Our Hotel … Pan Pacific International

Hotel Lobby

The Giant Ferris Wheel opposite our Hotel

The Imagine Cup welcome board at the Hotel

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Some pictures that we clicked today from Japan …
Will be putting up lots more when I get the time … and when I click it …
Clicked them only today after we got into our rooms …

The harbour … the bridge can be seen clearly in the background … from our balcony :)
We have some very nice views … yet to come …

Our hotel room … I’ve tried to hide most of the messy part of the room … but it still shows :)

Night view of Japan from our balcony again :)

The Pacifico building opposite our building …

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